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Old 03-25-2014, 10:08 AM   #1401
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Avoid both during the summer though. It was 93 the day we visited Chichen Itza and that was the hottest 93 I've ever experienced. Hotel owner says it is regularly 105+ during the summer months.

We're headed to Merida for a few days in early July. We expect it to be hot. Any tips on what to see?

We'll probably take a day trip to Chichen Itza, or maybe visit there on our way back to Playa del Carmen. I've also been considering Uxmal, but not sure if we want to see that many Mayan ruins.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:55 AM   #1402
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We're headed to Merida for a few days in early July. We expect it to be hot. Any tips on what to see?

We'll probably take a day trip to Chichen Itza, or maybe visit there on our way back to Playa del Carmen. I've also been considering Uxmal, but not sure if we want to see that many Mayan ruins.
I've seen more than a few sets of ruins, and once you've been to Chichen Itza, well, you'll not be wowed by the others, IMHO.
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Old 03-26-2014, 12:30 AM   #1403
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We have a chance to go somewhere internationally in mid-May (friends offering us buddy passes to fly really cheap...WOW).

Because of traveling on buddy passes we can't book anything too firm like tours ahead of time (we'd be flying standby for each leg of the trip). However we could possibly book something last minute once we end up whereever our final destination is.
Friends don't let friends fly on Buddy Passes.
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Old 03-27-2014, 01:28 PM   #1404
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We're headed to Merida for a few days in early July. We expect it to be hot. Any tips on what to see?

We'll probably take a day trip to Chichen Itza, or maybe visit there on our way back to Playa del Carmen. I've also been considering Uxmal, but not sure if we want to see that many Mayan ruins.
I would check out the Museum of Popular Art and the Museum of the Maya. Both very good. Several other museums as well but we didn't have time for those. A walk around the mercado is very interesting as it takes up about six city blocks and has just about everything offered for sale. The Paseo de Montejo is an interesting boulevard to walk down and see all of the colonial architecture.

La Tratto in the Santa Lucia Plaza is a nice Italian restaurant with happy hour from 6-9 pm. Great deal and good food.

Have a great trip!
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:33 PM   #1405
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Going to Monterey, CA for four days for the Next Generation Jazz Festival. Should be a great time to listen to all of the music this weekend.
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:09 PM   #1406
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Leaving on a 4 day trip to Manila tomorrow...for w*rk. I expect I'll be to busy to get out much to look around.
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:29 PM   #1407
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:59 AM   #1408
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We got our NEXUS cards in the mail last week -- something I've really been looking forward to.

The last couple of times I've driven into Canada, I was stuck in long (over 20 minute) bumper-to-bumper lines at the border crossing. Very frustrating, since I could see the cars in the NEXUS lane just zipping on through -- clear sailing for them.

We have a couple of trips that way coming up this summer, so this will be a huge improvement. Well worth the 4-5 hour drive to Detroit for our interviews.
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Old 04-01-2014, 12:29 PM   #1409
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brau, is that the same as the little card we got with our Global Entry? I have never used it, though we will use it in May when we take off in the bus. I wonder if it will help speed us up, though, since we'll have a mix of folks with us, none of whom probably have the cards.
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Old 04-01-2014, 03:49 PM   #1410
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brau, is that the same as the little card we got with our Global Entry? I have never used it, though we will use it in May when we take off in the bus. I wonder if it will help speed us up, though, since we'll have a mix of folks with us, none of whom probably have the cards.
No, alas I have sad news for you. We made the same mistake, so I'm happy to set you straight.

Like you, we signed up for Global Entry, and it worked beautifully. We put our trusted traveler numbers in when making airline reservations and got into the good lines. But the Global Entry program is only designed for those entering the USA from other countries. Sure, it also puts you in the trusted traveler program so you can get the pre-check certification on your boarding pass, but that's it. Incidentally, the card is meaningless -- you'll never use it. Trusted traveler pre-check is keyed off your number that you give the airline. When you use a Global Entry kiosk coming into a USA airport, you just use your passport.

The other program, NEXUS, is designed strictly for travel between the US and Canada. The NEXUS card (looks very similar to the Global Entry card) is actually useful, and is what you use at border crossings.

After going through the Global Entry routine, we found out about the NEXUS program, so we signed up for that, too. Not a big deal, very similar, but since it's a joint US-Canada program you have to do the interview at a designated border facility, which is why we went to Detroit.

NEXUS is great, because:
a. it costs just $50 for five years, instead of $100 for Global Entry.
b. it still lets you use the Global Entry kiosks and be a trusted traveler.
c. it greatly speeds up your border crossings into/out of Canada.

When you get your NEXUS card in the mail (after your interview), you activate it online just like the Global Entry card, and that automatically deactivates your Global Entry card, which they tell you to shred.

So I would say that any USA citizen who even occasionally travels to Canada should forget about the Global Entry program and just sign up for NEXUS. It costs just half as much, gives you the exact same privileges, and seriously smooths your Canadian border crossings.

The big difference, of course, is that you have to do the personal interview at a designated border crossing instead of the large number of USA facilities that do the Global Entry interviews.

Also, since NEXUS is a joint program, there is one additional requirement that Canada imposes for airport use. You have to get an iris scan, in addition to the standard fingerprinting. Not a big deal.

Of course, all this is just for your information. In your case, it won't make any difference, since everyone in a group must be enrolled in NEXUS in order to use it. I'm afraid that unless all your folks are enrolled, you'll be stuck in the slow lane.

Any other questions? I'd be happy to provide detail.

NEXUS | U.S. Customs and Border Protection
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Old 04-01-2014, 11:01 PM   #1411
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Retirement in 2 days
so in 4-5 weeks heading out on the harley to say thank you to those that gave me the ball early in my career. 15-20 people. Then north with the flyrod to Montana I'd. Then home before Sturgis. got to mow the lawn : )
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Old 04-03-2014, 07:27 AM   #1412
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I'm a bit of a train geek and have taken train trips on three continents (so far). So, this definitely got my excitement level up...

New train ticket offers 53-day rail trip around the world
Round the world rail tickets - CNN.com

Except it's the three continents I've already been to.. damn the luck. Oh, and I did it for quite a bit less $$$ than that...
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Old 04-03-2014, 11:48 AM   #1413
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Retirement in 2 days
so in 4-5 weeks heading out on the harley to say thank you to those that gave me the ball early in my career. 15-20 people. Then north with the flyrod to Montana I'd. Then home before Sturgis. got to mow the lawn : )
Sounds wonderful. And what a great idea to personally thank those who helped along the way. Wish I had thought of, and done, that.
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Old 04-10-2014, 06:44 PM   #1414
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Next month we're flying to Frankfurt and taking a train to Trier, Germany. There we pick up our rental bikes and will spend a week biking the path along the Mosel River to the Rhine. It's a leisurely ride (15-25 miles/day) so we'll have plenty of time for wine tasting, beer drinking and castle visiting.
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Old 04-10-2014, 07:09 PM   #1415
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Next month we're flying to Frankfurt and taking a train to Trier, Germany. There we pick up our rental bikes and will spend a week biking the path along the Mosel River to the Rhine. It's a leisurely ride (15-25 miles/day) so we'll have plenty of time for wine tasting, beer drinking and castle visiting.
I'd love to do that!
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Old 04-10-2014, 07:09 PM   #1416
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Currently in Beijing on a 10- day holiday. Been doing side trips and enjoying the sights here. So far the pollution level has been kind to us. The last time I was here was more than 10 years ago. Things have changed so much. Did a climb on a remote part of The Great Wall too.ImageUploadedByEarly Retirement Forum1397178587.384287.jpg
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Old 04-12-2014, 09:32 AM   #1417
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Just got back from a most enjoyable couple of days with DW in St Augustine Fl.
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Old 04-14-2014, 12:38 PM   #1418
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Wynn, Las Vegas.....had a great time.
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Old 04-16-2014, 04:08 PM   #1419
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Just in the process of organizing a Sept/Oct trip to Sardinia, Sicily, Malta, and Greece with a stopover in London both ways. Perhaps a last minute cruise deal while we are in the Med. if the price and itinerary is right.

Any suggestions appreciated.
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Florida and Grand Cayman in May
Old 04-16-2014, 05:20 PM   #1420
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Florida and Grand Cayman in May

Spending some time in Florida and one day on Grand Cayman in May basically planning to do mostly nothing except beach bumming and bar hoping for a week.

I am considering checking out Stingray City while in Grand Cayman. Sadly, I will be there on a cruise ship day; so, I expect it to be packed if the weather is nice. Anyone have recent experience with this?
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