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Nine signs you're a good traveller - Travel_the_world

 

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You’ve learnt the basics of the language before you arrive
It’s a true wonder of the world that English is such a universal language.  Every tourist region has English-speaking staff.  This makes it so easy for us English-speaking tourists to get around. It also makes it so easy for us English-speaking tourists to take the English being spoken to us for granted and even have the audacity to get cranky and speak louder when someone doesn’t understand English (I’ve seen it happen over and over again).

When you’ve taken the effort to learn basic words in the native language of the place you’re visiting—words such as hello, thank you, goodbye, please, water, and you’re welcome—you are usually respected by the locals for it.  I’ll even go as far as saying that you’ll often find that for your effort they will go out of their way to help you.

You don’t travel with more luggage than you can manage on your own
In my blog ‘The worst type of travelling companions’ I called out everyone who over packs and then expects help from those unlucky to be in the vicinity when the bags need to be moved. 

In my travels, I’ll help out a first-time traveller who’s made the rookie error of too much luggage for them to handle alone.  But mate, if you’re travelling around the world and have three big bags, all I’m going to say to you is “God gave you two arms, not three,” as a nip up the stairs with my own bags.

You know when you’ve earned the luggage badge for good traveller, because this is when you’ll know what combination of luggage works for you and what doesn’t. For example, I love travelling with my big checked-in suitcase, a carry-on suitcase and a small handbag. My handbag goes over the shoulder and I use my two arms for my two cases.

You plan, but you’re flexible with the plan
I’m a real planner.  But, I’ve discovered that planning every minute for every day will mean that I miss out on the impromptu stuff that a city has to offer. 

A good traveller will arrive in a city with a hit-list of what they need to see, what they want to see, and then there’ll be spare time to ‘discover’.

I usually use discover time to browse the shops. Some people use this time to check out the pubs, museums, or any local sporting event. But the reason discover time is important is because I have also used it to discover and indulge in the hot springs in Rotorua, New Zealand; the Reichstag in Berlin, Germany; buy last-minute tickets to West End shows in London; and randomly meet local English-speaking Chinese in Beijing and go to dinner with them at their ‘local’.

You always take your own version of a first aid kit
As a good traveller you’ll travel with your own personal version of a first aid kit.  For me this includes tough strip band aids for blisters on my feet, sunscreen and after sun care, headache / migraine tablets, and antihistamines. 

You’re happy to ask for directions
Disclaimer here: I acknowledge that not knowing the way can lead to an adventure.  But, if I only have one day in a place, I can bet your bottom dollar that I’ll have a list of things I want to see. Don’t be above asking for directions.  It will get you taking with the locals and who knows, they may even give you a hot tip.

You quiz the locals about the best restaurants and bars
This is one that guidebooks don’t tell you. Chatting with the locals and quizzing them about the best places to eat and drink will get you in with the in-crowd. 

After checking in at your accommodation hit up the concierge or reception team and ask them where they go to eat.  Don’t be surprised or disillusioned if they try and direct you to the tourist spots, this is their default response.  You need to be persistent, tell them you’re asking for ‘their’ opinion and ask direct questions and for details.  Which restaurant on ABC Street? Which bar along the wharf? 

You’ll be enjoying the best the city has to offer without the crappy tourist food in no time.

You make the most of it – rain, hail or shine
Every traveller leaves hoping that they get sun, sun, and more sun.  However sometimes Mother Nature has a different idea and you end up with rain, rain, and maybe even sleet. 

The rain and the grey is probably not the vision of the city you had in mind.  But, don’t let this stop you.  Get out and get amongst it and get exploring. 

So what if you get a bit wet—are you the wicked witch of the west who’ll melt if you get wet?  The upside to the rain is your photos will look different to everyone else’s, and you’ll have great stories to tell of dashing from cover-to-cover as you attempt to stay dry.

You know the risks of not booking in advance and take the risk anyway
As I noted above, I love a good plan.  But, there is nothing like the spontaneity of booking that night’s accommodation while sitting in an airport waiting for your flight. 

However, beware.  While this might feel exhilarating and exciting, you’re walking a tightrope of bargain shopping or selling your first-born to be able to afford a bed. 

As someone who’s experienced both sides of the tightrope, I still occasionally find myself booking accommodation like this for the thrill of it but in doing so I’m well aware that this decision means I could very well be fleeced.

You take note of, and respect local customs
Local customs make travelling so interesting. Learning about how other people live, eat, and enjoy their spare time is fascinating.  Just like learning some key phrases before arriving in a non-English speaking city, learning about local customs and what is and isn’t appropriate will prevent you from faux pas. 

There are well-known customs such covering shoulders and knees when visiting churches in Europe and Asia, restraining from public displays of affection in India, but there are also little know customs such as leaving a little on your plate in China to show your host they gave you enough to eat that can go a long way to show respect for the city you’re visiting.

 
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Urban Hum honey now on hand at Newcastle Airport-Airport_news


You can now give the sweet taste of Newcastle on your travels, with Urban Hum honey now stocked at Newcastle Airport. 
Urban Hum provides local, ethically produced honey, to residents and businesses throughout the Hunter which makes for the perfect gift or souvenir that fits right in your carry-on.
Over the past few years, local beekeeping business Urban Hum has installed over a hundred beehives, boosting backyard biodiversity and providing raw unprocessed honey to over 9000 customers.
Urban Hum has taken local residents on a journey allowing them to play an active role in hosting hives while raising awareness of the plight of the honeybee.
All their honey is produced within 20km from the Heart of Newcastle with hives located on rooftops and in suburban gardens. 
“The survival of the honey bee is in jeopardy and unfortunately our survival depends on theirs with bees responsible for 60% of the food we consume,” Urban beekeeper Kelly Lees said. 
“Our bees come first. This is reflected in our management practices and ethical honey production,” Kelly said. 
Each jar of Urban Hum honey is unique to the suburb from which it is sourced.
"A process of small batch production and single hive origin extraction offers customers a unique experience of enjoying the complex floral varieties that makes up a city like Newcastle, an interesting blend of native bushland pockets, street trees, parks and suburban gardens.” Urban Hum co-founder Anna Scobie said.

Pick up your jar of Urban Hum honey,  that is unique to the Hunter, from News travels in the departures lounge at Newcastle Airport .


Newcastle Weekender-airport_news

Weekend in Newcastle? Here's the only guide you'll need
Where the beach meets the city and the coffee is always good, Newcastle is a booming foodie hub like no other. Bursting at the seams with places to eat and things to do, Newcastle is where the beach is on your doorstep, and the bustle of the city is in your backyard. Take a short drive, and you’ll also find yourself in the acclaimed Hunter Valley wine region.


Breakfast


You can’t beat café-packed Darby Street for some of the best meals in the city. The Three Monkeys Cafe is renowned for its Snickers smoothie and generous breakfast menu, while Core Espresso is perfect for those in need of wholesome food and coffee. To escape the busy Darby Street, try The Edwards, set within a beautiful space in Newcastle West, complete with a wood-fired oven that’s perfect for a winter breakfast with sweet, savoury and vegetarian options available. You can also take your laundry here, thanks to the in-house launderette. In Newcastle East, Scotties serves up some of the best coffee in town that’s best followed up with a short stroll down to the beach for a dip.

Lunch


A newcomer to the food scene and in the heart of Newcastle’s west is Antojitos, a Mexican eatery perfect for the casual BYO Sunday-sesh. The fish tacos are a must and perfect for kicking off drinks! All corn chips and tortillas are made in-house, and the menu leans towards fresh and light offerings. For a beachfront setting, there’s Estabar, which is perfect for taking in the coastal views and brunch style options. Parry St Garage is ideal for a long lunch and wines by the bottle. You can also book ahead;  meaning it’s perfect for those in big groups or wanting to make sure they can get a table.


Dinner


The new menu at Reserve Wine Bar with its Mediterranean-style share plates make it a popular favourite with a loyal following. Fortunate Son is another favourite among locals while fine-diner Subo offers a 5-course seasonal set menu for $90. If you’re after something more casual, Bronx Pizza on Darby Street has some great American beers on tap and crisp-base pizzas to boot!

Pre-dinner or post-dinner drinks


Battlesticks bar is the ideal setting for champagne and has one of the best vantage points to watch the sun set over the harbour. For some of the best cocktails in Newcastle, head to Coal & Cedar, that also offers cocktail and whisky masterclasses. The Basement on Market St is great for relaxed street-side drinks and a light meal, while afternoon drinks on the rooftop of 529 The Terrace never disappoints.



The Hunter Valley


The Hunter Valley is worth a full day out. If you’re after a dining experience like no other, choose between a 5- or 8-course degustation at EXP. Restaurant by chef Frank Fawkner. You can also grab some Oakvale Wines and Fawk Foods black garlic paste to go, which makes a great hamper for any food lover. Dark Horse Vineyard cellar door makes for a memorable wine tasting with an equestrian-inspired décor. For something a little different, why not taste some of the artisan chocolates available from local chocolatiers Cocoa Nib at Keith Tulloch Wines. For breathtaking gardens and heritage convent buildings to match (as seen recently on the reality television show Farmer Wants A Wife), a walk around Circa 1876 is a must. If you plan on spending the night in the area, be sure to start the next day with a Champagne breakfast at Peterson House.


Things that don’t involve eating


Granted, you can’t spend all your time trying all of the fantastic food and wine this area has to offer, no matter how much you might want to. So why not take a walk to Nobby’s Head lighthouse while enjoying second-to-none views of the city and ocean, or do the Newcastle Memorial Walk, a 450m track that takes you from Bar Beach to Strzelecki Lookout, along coastal cliff tops. Follow your walk with a swim in the Newcastle Ocean Baths and a spot of shopping through the streets of Cooks Hill and Darby Street for quirky gifts, clothes and antiques. The Newcastle City Farmers Market is a must and is held at various times throughout the year. For local boutique artisans, you can’t beat a visit to The Emporium.


Accommodation


Spent all your money on food and wine? We know the feeling. So for cheaper accommodation, you can’t beat the Newcastle Beach Hotel. You’re lucky if you can get ocean views, but a practical (albeit dated) room does the job nicely. But if it's something a little more upmarket you are looking for....The Crowne Plaza Newcastle, which overlooks Newcastle Harbour, is always a favourite, situated perfectly to offer you the best of Newcastle right outside your door.




First published on Apr 20, 2017 by Delicious.com.au. 
Words by Sam Coutts. 

National Volunteer Week 2017-Airport_news


8 May to 15 May is National Volunteer Week. While Australia stops to celebrate the contribution that volunteers make this week, it is also a time that we stop to celebrate an important anniversary for some very special members of the Newcastle Airport family.

The Newcastle Airport volunteer program, manned by our very own teal-clad volunteer Ambassadors, was launched in 2008 during National Volunteer Week. Since then, the contribution our Ambassadors make to the Newcastle Airport experience is infinite. 
For the past nine years, our Ambassadors have helped:


  • you at the pay stations
  • keep the kids entertained your parents find their luggage and get safely into a taxi
  • direct your brother to the ever-important ATM (which is amazingly under the large ATM sign), and
  • you locate vacant power points to charge whichever gizmo or gadget needs some juice.
In isolation these might seems like small contributions but, together, they make the Airport a much friendlier place to be; the smiling face of one of our Ambassadors is often the first impression a visitor has of our region.

Many of the Ambassadors have been a team member since the program’s inception and since this time as a team they have collectively volunteered in excess of 25,000 hours. The Ambassadors willingly work on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and Easter because they believe they have a positive impact on the passenger experience. And you know what, we agree with them.

So, next time you rush by one of our teal-clad Ambassadors, slow down, stop, and say ‘Hi’.  We can assure you they’re more than eager to have a chat, and we are sure you will board your flight or get on the road to your destination feeling better for the experience.


From the bottom of our hearts, thank you to our wonderful Ambassadors. Thank you for freely giving your time to help others; you really are the heart and soul of our Airport! 

An open letter to the people of the Hunter - News


Dear the people of the Hunter,

Wow, hasn’t there been some interest in our airport during the month of May! It’s heartening to see so much passion from our region.

The commencement of works on the $1.9 million international processing area fit-out seems to have more than piqued your interest. What is evident is your excitement and enthusiasm at the prospect of future international destinations becoming a real possibility.

I am writing this open letter to residents of the Hunter to thank you for your passion for the introduction of new routes out of Newcastle Airport. I have read your comments on social media, and listened to opinions on radio and in the media that prove we are an impassioned region with strong views on the future of their airport.

Your sentiments are not only warranted, but just what we need to convince airlines we have a local population that wants to fly to new destinations and would actively support new routes with fervour.

We can all agree our region most definitely deserves an international airport. These development works are the next step towards making this happen for you.

Partly funded by the State Government thanks to an $850,000 Restart NSW grant, the fit-out is due for completion later this year. This means that if an airline told us today they wanted to start international flights from Newcastle, by November we’d have all the necessary infrastructure ready for the services to commence.

We’re working hard to bring more flights to Newcastle Airport, but competition is fierce among airports to attract more flights. Just like any other company we pitch business cases to win new work (ie new routes). These pitches are backed by extensive passenger and traffic research and often include financial incentives.

As you can imagine, we’re not the only ones doing this, almost every other airport in Australia is hoping to grow their footprint and deliver new routes for their catchment. Ultimately it’s the airlines who decide where they will fly their planes and that decision is based on demand.

Completing this Border Force fit-out means that from an infrastructure perspective, we have done everything we needed to prepare our terminal for international flights. When international flights will start from Newcastle, is yet unknown.

That said, what is evident to me and my team is the wanderlust our community has.

We take this desire for new destinations—both international and domestic—seriously and we will continue to lobby the airlines and push hard for Newcastle Airport and our region to give you an airport the region deserves.

Domestically, we’ve listened to your comments and have focused on new services into South Australia and to additional airports in Queensland. We are in discussions with airlines at the moment about opportunities to both these states and I believe we have presented a strong business case for new services. Watch this space!

Internationally our focus is on short-haul destinations such as New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, and—with the right aircraft—potentially Bali in the future.

While right now we don’t have any announcements on the horizon, completion of these fit-out works will remove the last infrastructure hurdle in bringing international flights to Newcastle. If we don’t build the infrastructure, we can never have international flights.

So, what we need you to do now is keep that enthusiasm going strong! We will continue to communicate openly and honestly with you and we also need you all to let the airlines know that Newcastle Airport is serviced by a population that is passionate about travel.  Let the airlines know where you want to fly and keep that enthusiasm strong!

Thank you again for all of your support,
Peter

Peter Cock
CEO Newcastle Airport
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