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Travel News

By Judy Newell

Mexico Travel News

Delta Returns to the LA–Mexico City Market

Delta has announced plans to launch daily nonstop service between Los Angeles and Mexico City on Dec. 1. The flight, which is subject to government approval, will connect Delta’s LAX hub to partner Aeromexico’s Mexico City hub and complement Aeromexico’s existing schedule between the cities.

The flight marks Delta’s return to the LAMexico City market for the first time since 2005. LA is the number one US market to Mexico, and the two airlines’ combined schedule gives customers access to 20 destinations beyond LA. In 2016, Delta and Aeromexico carried over 7 million customers to and from Mexico.

In May, Delta and Aeromexico announced five new nonstop markets starting in late 2017: Atlanta to Merida and Queretaro; Los Angeles to Leon; and Seattle and Portland to Mexico City.

Aeromexico offers six daily roundtrip flights between LA and Mexico City.

Delta SkyMiles members and Aeromexico Club Premier Members enjoy reciprocal mileage earning and redemption opportunities on both Delta and Aeromexico flights.


VivaAerobus schedules Mexico City–Las Vegas nonstop

Mexican low-cost airline VivaAerobus announced its first nonstop international route from Mexico City to Las Vegas. Passengers can now buy their tickets from US$82 to fly the new daily route, which will start Dec. 16.

With this route, VivaAerobus has 12 new routes in 2017. The airline added 77 routes to 34 different destinations, three of them international.


Pablo Escobar’s Palace Now Accepting Guests

Pablo Escobar, a controversial drug lord from Medellin, Colombia, has now entered the “family resort section” of pop culture. The drug kingpin, who rose to infamy in the 1980s, once owned a palatial property in Tulum, Mexico.

That property has now opened as a resort “for friends and family” according to Casa Malca’s website, which showcases an enticing and beautiful property that boasts 35 rooms. Its renovation and repurposing is thanks to New York art dealer Lio Malca, who now owns the compound.

Escobar was once the head of the Medellin Cartel, a well-known drug syndicate. In 1987, Forbes magazine listed Escobar among the richest people in the world. His exploits have become the basis for a hit Netflix show called Narcos, which retells the Escobar story with flourishes from Hollywood.

The rooms start at US$514 a night. Thankfully, they do not require guards standing nearby in case any other kingpin wants access to your territory.


Cruise News

Royal Caribbean’s “Total Eclipse Cruise”

Royal Caribbean is offering a special 7-night “Total Eclipse Cruise” to the Caribbean that will sail during this summer’s path of the eclipse, which will occur on August 21. The voyage even includes NASA–approved sunglasses for safe and optimal viewing.

The cruise on board Oasis of the Seas will set sail on August 20, 2017, from Port Canaveral, Florida and visit Eastern Caribbean destinations Phillipsburg, St. Maarten; Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas; and Nassau, Bahamas.

The August 21 total eclipse of the sun, the first to sweep the entire continental U.S. since 1918, is a celestial phenomenon that has been anticipated for years. The moon will align with the sun and Earth, forming a shadow that will be seen from the Oregon coast to the Atlantic Ocean (by way of South Carolina), which will turn day to night. Nothing but the outermost part of the sun’s atmosphere, called the corona, will be seen shimmering in the sky.

Oprah Cruise Extended to 300 Voyages

Holland America Line’s programming based on O, The Oprah Magazine will extend beyond the Share the Adventure Cruise, showcasing Oprah Winfrey, which sailed on July 15. O-focused programming will be featured on more than 300 of the cruise line’s North America voyages beginning in August 2017.


New Cruise Specials on Star Clippers

Through October 2017 on certain itineraries, Star Clippers is offering up to a US$1,300 credit on airfare, plus a 65 percent discount off Star Flyer or Royal Clipper cruise fares.

In addition, through October 2017, on select Bali sailings, US$800 savings are being offered per cabin on airfare, in addition to a US$500 shipboard credit and a 15 percent discount when taking consecutive cruises.

In the Mediterranean, the Star Flyer embarks on seven-night voyages roundtrip from Athens while the Royal Clipper cruises roundtrip from Cannes. Round trips from Bali (7, 10, or 11 night sailings) are available to the islands of Indonesia.

International News

Taj Mahal Restoration

India’s iconic Taj Mahal is undergoing a major restoration, which means the structure will be covered in scaffolding over the course of a year. Workers will apply a mudpack treatment to renew the marble exterior to a brighter shade of white. Las year the outer minarets were restored.

The 377-year-old UNESCO World Heritage Site is the main draw for over 8 million tourists each year.

If a pristine Taj is vitally important to you, it might be best to wait until after April 2018 before visiting Agra.

Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

“Nothing is as easy to make as a promise this winter to do something next summer.” By Sydney J. Harris, columnist

Deal of the Week

Last Chance Balcony Blowout Sale

MSC Cruises is offering balcony stateroom from only US$579 on the beautiful MSC Divina. This promotion includes 7-night Eastern and Western Caribbean sailings from July to December 2017.

  • Eastern Caribbean, 7-night sailings, balcony stateroom from US$579 per person.
  • Western Caribbean, 7-night sailing, balcony stateroom from US$679 per person.

Judy Newell, an international travel consultant for over 40 years, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, abilities and budget. Please contact Judy for reservations or further information on Travel News topics; cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949 300 3682; email Her office is in Rancho Los Labradores, Car. a Dolores Hidalgo. View the latest travel specials on the website

Sources: Travel Agent Central, Travel Weekly, Travel Pulse, Space Coast Daily, Star Clippers, MSC Cruises


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