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Skeleton costumes for Halloween
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Halloween in New York City for Free And Cheap Fun

Starting in early September, carved pumpkins, spooky ghosts and candy treats for Halloween sprout all over New York City making window shopping a great way to enjoy free fun. Best yet, it spreads the spirit of autumn across the five boroughs through All Hallows' Eve on October 31... and maybe the following weekend! Whether it's watching the world-famous Village Halloween Parade...

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family in car
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Favorite Car Games For The Backseat

It is an unfortunate fact of family car trips: kids, despite most efforts, can become pretty restless while cooped up in the backseat. In the past, Family Travel Forum has recommended numerous handy travel games, electronic devices and books to keep traveling children content during a road trip.  And while most of these have been effective in keeping the peace, sometimes they cause a severe...

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Downtown Las Vegas.
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Las Vegas: Glitz, Glitter And Family Fun

Las Vegas is maturing much faster than its family audience, but it's still great fun for parents who don't mind "minding" their kids. Las Vegas is maturing much faster than its family audience, but it's still great fun for parents who don't mind "minding" their kids.

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Top 10 Cheap Getaways For Family Travelers 2008

In 2008, FTF's Top 10 Cheap Getaways for Family Travelers were selected for the great value they offered to families who desired to travel on a budget. FTF staff examined the value proposition offered by cruise, resort, ski, hotel, reunion and camp destinations to select the winners during the 2008 economic downturn. 

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Professional Editor Shares Tips On What Makes a Great Essay

Roger Rapoport, the publisher of RDR Books, is a member of the Society of American Travel Writers and one of the judges of the 2009 Family Travel Forum Teen Travel Writing Scholarship. The co-editor of the bestselling “I Should Have Stayed Home” travel humor series, Rapoport was pleased to be a part of the...

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Virginia Beach, Virginia Hotels And Resorts

Summer planning? Editors' reviews of some great hotels for the whole family at Virginia Beach, one of America's most popular yet affordable beach resorts. Whether your family is looking for a simple motel with a standard bedroom, a fancy hotel that has housed Presidents, or a luxury resort with a family feel, Virginia Beach has it all. The oceanfront boardwalk has been cleaned up and the...

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Family Car Games – The License Plate Game

It's back to the future with the License Plate Game, one of our favorite car games -- in printable form -- to make road time and the long miles fly by. We've also got game suggestions in app form that your kids will love. Families know that FTF has reviewed and recommended numerous handy travel games, electronic devices and books to keep traveling children content during a long family road...

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Teachers Apply for Grants Supporting Travel Abroad

Teaching is not an easy job, and one of the perks is having the summer off with the rest of the students -- if you have somewhere to go. Since 1988, with the inception of Fund for Teachers, a national donor-supported organization, teachers nationwide have been using grant money to travel abroad.Of course, this is not just a vacation. For the summer...

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Top Cheap Campground Getaway: Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts

The Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts, previously a winner of FTF's Top Cheap Getaways for Family Travelers award, get a fresh look in 2015. Camping always seems like a good idea for families:  It's eco-friendly, in the great outdoors there is more space to play, and it offers that cozy home-away-from-home...

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Road Trip USA: The Pacific Northwest From Portland To The Olympic Peninsula

With its combination of sophisticated citylife in Seattle and Portland, and the scenic wilderness of the Olympic Peninsula, this road trip satisfies all ages.For families that want the flair of cities combined with the best that nature has to offer, a road trip through the Pacific Northwest is the perfect fit.  Along the main road of Interstate 5 travelers can find the major metropolises...

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New York’s Best Family-Friendly Hotels

Having lived in New York City our entire lives, we have always loved tiny cafes, small movie houses, and those more intimate places to go. Although we prefer some of NYC's smaller hotels to the larger ones, in fairness to families who come for excitement and a Big City experience, we have included some favorites in all size and style categories, grouped according to location, then price.This...

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Fine Food, Fast Cars, A Romantic Weekend Getaway

We were a little upset when we landed at Daytona Beach’s airport in central Florida: it was raining… hard. Not the most ideal scenario for a romantic weekend getaway for my boyfriend, Maurice, and me. A charming coastal community best known for its former Spring Break crowds and the International Daytona Speedway, we weren’t sure what this famous beach town...

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Aruba Marriott Resort And Stellaris Casino

The moment we walked into the sprawling, six-story lobby of the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino and received our complimentary tropical cocktail, my cousin and I knew we were in for a great family beach vacation. ...

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Rekindle Romance In St. Kitts, The Caribbean’s Sexiest Island

More than five years ago, I was lucky enough to find myself vacationing on the island of St. Kitts, a lush, 68-square mile volcanic island in the West Indies. I fell in love with the people, the culture and the sweet air of the small island nation, affectionately dubbed, “Sugar City.” On my return, this time with boyfriend along my side, I wondered: would the taste of rum cake, the sting...

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Star Trekking: Vanessa Hudgens Visits Disney World in Orlando

Vanessa Hudgens, the star of Disney’s High School Musical series, spent time in Florida this weekend at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  The actress and singer was doing a press visit for her new upcoming film Beastly, a modern-day retelling of the classic Disney movie Beauty and the Beast.Vanessa was certainly the Belle of the park too as she posed for photos...

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Good Golly! Macon, Georgia For Music And History

A mom takes the family back to her old stomping grounds in Macon, known as Middle Georgia, and discovers museums, monuments, music and great eats in the heart of the Peach State. Not long ago, after spending a decade in Northern California, my husband and I moved our family of four back to my childhood home of Middle Georgia, a place I love more than any other. Like a kindergartner at...

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St. Lucia Hotels And Resorts

Find the perfect island hotel or resort, all-inclusive or luxury villa, for your family vacation with our guide to St. Lucia's top family beach resorts. The influence of years as an English or French colony (and top value airfares) have made the lush island of St. Lucia irresistible to tourists who have, in turn, inspired a sophisticated and stylish resort scene.  For more recommendations...

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Utah’s Park City, Where Family Fun is Not Just for Winter

With all that Park City has to offer, we are sure that your entire family will be surprised at how much this winter community blossoms during the spring and summer months. Numerous ski resorts stay open all year round to provide warm weather enjoyment for young and old, all at an elevation of 7,000 feet. Summers in Park City are packed full of family-friendly activities and...

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The Seven Stars Resort, Turks & Caicos

The family-friendly Seven Stars is one of Turks & Caicos' newest luxury oceanfront resorts on Grace Bay Beach. A Caribbean paradise located just south of the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos in the British West Indies promises warm blue-hued waters, beautiful shores and tradewinds throughout the year.  The nation consists of nearly 40 islands and cays, and...

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Star Trekker: Justin Bieber Celebrates in Luxe Style with Selena Gomez

A few weeks ago, the “Never Say Never” pop sensation and heartthrob, Justin Bieber turned 17 years of age... and he is growing rather fast. Bieber and Disney star, Selena Gomez, 18, celebrated his birthday by spending the evening together at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Hotel and Spa  in Dana Point, California, just...

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Star Trekking: Miley Cyrus in Haiti Lending a Hand

Hannah Montana Disney star, Miley Cyrus, hopped a plane to Haiti last week to do some good for the Caribbean island nation. Haiti suffered horrendous damage and loss of life during the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that occurred January 12, 2010. In the past year, islanders have continued to suffer from psychological trauma and diseases such as cholera...

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Star Trekker: Justin Bieber Wins NBA Celebrity All-Star

While Hollywood's elite watched, the 60th NBA All-Star Game played out Sunday, February 20, 2011 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. It's a great venue to take the family to on any LA vacation, and this night was no exception. The best players, including Kobe Byrant, Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, were...

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Hacienda Tres Rios: An Eco-Luxury Yucatan Adventure

Seeking a luxurious Mexican retreat? Hacienda Tres Rios is where the Mayan heavens meet the earth and the rivers and sea converge before your very eyes.Located just a few miles north of Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, the Hacienda Tres Rios is not your standard all-inclusive luxury hotel.  Opened in November of 2008, the hotel was built on 326 acres full of natural resources...

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Star Trekking: Celebrities Flock to Dallas Super Bowl XLV

Football lovers will say that the Super Bowl is about the two best teams in the NFL battling it out for the top spot. Some believe it is about the commercials and others might claim it is a day for chicken wings, cheesey dips and even some beers for the adults.  The 2011 Super Bowl was technically about the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers, but tons of celebrities headed...

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Star Trekking: Jersey Shore Cast Heads to Italy

The cast of MTV’s hit reality television show, The Jersey Shore, is set to film the fourth season overseas, in Italy, the network announced last week.In statement to the press, Chris Linn, MTV's executive vice president of programming and head of production, said, "While the Stateside 'Jersey Shore' locales have become iconic for our audience, it's really the constantly...

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Star Trekking: John Travolta’s Newborn is Already Flying the Skies

Two-month-old Benjamin Travolta is already logging hours towards his pilot’s license.  Following in father’s, John Travolta (now age 56) footsteps, newborn Benjamin is flying the friendly skies.   An avid pilot who flies regularly for Qantas Airways, Travolta, as reported by People Magazine, took little Ben...

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Star Trekking: Kate Plus Eight Go Down Under

Ending 2010 with a bang, reality television star and single mom, Kate Gosselin, packed up her eight children, and headed to New Zealand and Australia for a two week get-a-way.  Sources report that the 22-hour first class flight on Qantas Airways had a hefty price tag of more than $140,000.  Although lucky for Kate and her large bunch of kids, TLC, the network that airs...

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The Harry Potter Bachelorette Party

Writer, with girlfriends in tow, heads to Universal Orlando to explore the latest addition to the theme park: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.It wasn’t a typical Bachelorette Party with strippers, partying and the usual frisky accouterments. Instead, our small group of ladies in their mid-20s headed to Orlando, Florida with wholesome visions of butterbeer, wands, spells and...

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The 13 Career Break Symptoms That Say “Meet, Plan, Go!”

As the nationwide movement on extended travel and career break -- Meet, Plan, Go! recently took the world by storm on September 14th 2010, inspiring countless travel aspirants to break away from their daily grind and escape from their cubicles,  the Tours4Fun team experienced a strong dosage of inspiration themselves. As the nationwide movement on extended travel and career break --...

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Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort

White sand, blue waters, great service, delicious food... this centrally located Marriott resort is not the largest, but it has it all.One of the first resorts nestled on the south end of Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach and less than two miles away from Georgetown, the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach

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How Important is Family Travel for the Soul?

If you’ve been bitten by the travel bug since you were a kid, chances are that passion for travel runs in your family.  You are born to be a traveler when the memories of the road trips and the journeys which you undertook with your family as a child, hold a special place in your heart and inspire you to carry forward the legacy of family travel with your own...

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My Family Learns The Secret Of Italian Cuisine

Join us on a heritage tour of Italy as we stop in the pretty town of Parma to experience cheese, ham and balsamic vinegar production at the source. My family spent nearly two weeks touring the nation of Italy this summer and throughout the duration of our trip, there was one constant: delicious food.  Italian cuisine is something I live for and would probably die for.  Fortunately, I grew...

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Mission Holidays Blog Serves Increasing Number of Volunteer Vacations

Media Only. August 31, 2010. An increase in the number of community service trips and charitable vacations undertaken by young travelers prompts FTF to launch a blog on the topic.Every year, Family Travel Forum (FTF) hosts a teen travel writing scholarship asking young travelers to blog about their most imporant vacation experiences. Follow up surveys and data analyses indicate that community...

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Star Trekking: Ashton Kutcher, World’s Most Famous Stepfather, Explores Israel

On August 7th, he tweeted, “This just in from Israel… It’s hot.”  And that was just the beginning of the journey made by Ashton Kutcher, husband of Demi Moore and star of television series such as Punk’d and That 70s Show, to the Holy Land. An active follower of Kabblah and Jewish mysticism, Kutcher made his visit to Isreal as a guest of...

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San Juan Marriott Resort And Stellaris Casino

Need a burst of tropical warmth? No passport? No problem, when you contemplate a getaway to this city-style beachfront resort in sunny San Juan, Puerto Rico.By day, the San Juan Marriott is just like any ordinary and relaxed resort on a tropical island. Families exit the ground-level elevator with towels trailing and head outside...

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Barcelo Los Cabos Palace Deluxe, Mexico

A newly opened all-inclusive resort in San Jose del Cabo, this luxurious Barcelo resort was designed with the family in mind.One of the newest resort complexes on the pristine sands of San Jose del Cabo is the beautiful Barcelo Los Cabos Palace Deluxe.  Although most might say that naming a hotel...

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Active Adventures In St. Lucia

In addition to beaches and natural scenery, families should explore the unique allure of the Caribbean island of St. Lucia with an adventurous twist.St. Lucia boasts a rugged landscape that is lathered in greenery. Whether they're approaching from the south coast’s Hewanorra Airport or the northern tourist town and island capital of Castries, visitors will be simply enchanted by their...

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Family Travel Forum Announces 2010 Young Travel Writers Scholarship Winners

After running the inspirational Teen Travel Writers Scholarship for the past three years, Family Travel Forum decided it was time for travel writers ages 18-26 who shared their tales with the travelBIGO.com community to be eligible to win their own scholarship.The Spring 2010 scholarship period lasted for one month and in that time FTF received over...

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The Ultimate Times Square Dining Experience

As a local, I have eaten in a ton of New York City Restaurants, but up until recently, I have never had the pleasure to eat in Times Square.  Okay, yes, I have grabbed a hot dog or quick slice at a local joint, so I guess the more correct phrasing should be: I have never dined in style in Times Square. Just last month I had the pleasure to spend the night at the Residence...

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Curacao Attractions

A southern Caribbean gem with a Dutch flair that has it all for families: eco-attractions, great beaches, historical culture, friendly locals and more.Just a mere 40 miles off the coast of Venezuela, Curacao, part of the Netherlands Antilles, is a melting pot of over 50 cultures.  The 171-square-mile island is renowned for its coral reefs and deep sea diving and is immune from most tropical...

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Star Trekking: New Moon’s Robert Pattinson Spends Time in NYC

Robert Pattinson, the British heartthrob of Twilight fame and glory, recently spent some time in the Big Apple plugging his new movie Remember Me.  New York City, overloaded with world-class hotels and fancy accommodations, left many choices for the star, but Pattinson opted to stay at the Mandarin Oriental NYC. With 202 guest...

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Study Abroad on the Rise with Teens

When I was in college, I was lucky enough to spend a summer studying abroad with the American Institute of Foreign Study in Florence, Italy.  It was an amazing and educational life experience as I was living and learning in one of Italy’s most beautiful and culturally significant cities.  I studied the Italian language during my class time, but as a temporary citizen of Florence,...

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Punzabo Winner Lends a Helping Hand in Illinois

Congratulations to the February 2010 Punzabo winner, Nathan Fox, author of  “A Very Volunteer Vacation”! On his trip, Nathan didn’t discover an exotic locale or visit international monuments in far away lands; he did however, learn a great deal about helping others.  He and a group of teenagers from all...

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Star Trekking: Brad and Angelina (Plus Kids) Take Venice by Storm

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie spent some time in Venice during the end of February.  And of course, it was a family travel event with 19-month-old twins, Knox and Vivienne, in tow. Plus the rest of the Jolie-Pitt children, Maddox, 8, Pax, 6, Zahara, 5, and Shiloh, 3 also tagged along to enjoy the canals and bridges of Italy’s city built on water.Sources reported that the family...

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St. Kitts Marriott Resort And The Royal Beach Casino

The St. Kitts Marriott is a sweet luxury resort offering fun in the sun, a relaxing setting and much more, including interesting environmental programs for kids.The local Kittitians call their small island home in the Eastern Caribbean “Sugar City.” Of course, the real reason for this loving nickname is because St. Kitts is famous for its delicious sugar cane; however, locals like...

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Star-Trekking: John Travolta Flies Doctors and Medical Supplies to Haiti

On Monday, January 25th, in continuing efforts to send aid to Haiti, a nighttime flight piloted by John Travolta took off from Tampa, Florida carrying 50 doctors and over 7,000 pounds of medical supplies. According to the Embassy of Haiti and the Greater Washington Haiti Relief Committee, on the return trip, Travolta brought Haitian-Americans home to the United States to reunite them...

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Writers Comment On A Winner: “The Pennsylvania Hills”

For 2009, the winners of the Family Travel Forum Teen Travel Writing Scholarship were selected by professional writers and editors from the Society of American Travel Writers. They chose Kassandra Caudell’s essay "The Pennsylvania Hills" as the Third Place Winner. What follows are comments from these esteemed judges about...

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Unusual Blog “Beautiful Nepal” Generates Controversy Among Writers

Christine Anderson’s essay “Beautiful Nepal” was the Second Place Winner of FTF's 2009 Teen Travel Writing Scholarship, the first time that a poetic, stream-of-consciousness style of writing made it to the winners' round.  After it was selected by professionals from the Society of American Travel Writers, they asked the...

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Breezes Runaway Bay, Jamaica Resort And Golf Club

Newly renovated, this Jamaica resort provides families -- with teens and older -- an all-inclusive vacation that meets all of life's simple requirements for sun, food, drink and fun.Nestled on 22 acres of beachfront property in lush Runaway Bay, Jamaica, SuperClubs' Breezes Runaway Bay Resort & Golf Club is an all-inclusive property which only caters to adult families.  If traveling with...

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Star Trekking: Justin Bieber Swims with Dolphins at the Atlantis

Justin Bieber, the 15-year old Canadian pop star famous for his hits like “One Less Lonely Girl” and “One Time,” loves the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas.  And his recent trip there explains why. In the beginning of January, 2010, Bieber, along with a few of his closest friends,...

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Punzabo Winner Shares the History of her Favorite City: Berlin (December 2009)

The winner of the December 2009 travelBIGO Punzabo Award (and $100) is Jennifer Stacewicz! Her essay entitled Berlin, Germany takes the reader through a detailed description of the varied historical landmarks and attractions of the city that was once torn apart by the Cold War.When Jennifer was informed about her win,...

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Punzabo Winner Shares the History of her Favorite City: Berlin

The winner of the December 2009 travelBIGO Punzabo Award (and $100) is Jennifer Stacewicz! Her essay entitled Berlin, Germany takes the reader through a detailed description of the varied historical landmarks and attractions of the city that was once torn apart by the Cold War. When Jennifer was informed about her win,...

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Aruba Attractions

Like most Caribbean family beach getaways, Aruba offers visitors opportunities to rest in the sun on a tranquil beach, as beautiful, gentle blue waves lap at the sand.  Conversely, unlike most Caribbean beach getaways, Aruba is located outside of the hurricane belt, a mere 19 miles north of the Venezuelan coast.  Its climate, averaging a steady 81º F year round, is dry...

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Ten Travel Tragedies Of 2009

It could happen to any traveler... Here is a roundup of 2009's travel mishaps, disasters and tragedies. And you were worried about your lost luggage.It could happen to any traveler... Here is a roundup of 2009's travel mishaps, disasters and tragedies. And you were worried about your lost luggage. It is a fact of life: sometimes bad things happen to those who travel.  Usually...

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Top Cheap American Hotel Chain: Candlewood Suites

Candlewood Suites in the United States is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award. Looking for a budget hotel can be a daunting task.  Granted, while en route (and not being too picky) across the USA, a family can easily find a not-so-nice room at a local motel or hostel for $50 a night.  But, without a trusted brand name to back the quality, mom...

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Top Cheap Reunion Getaway: Asilomar Conference Grounds, California

The Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, California is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award.The Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, California is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award. According to a national study, more than 200,000 family reunions are organized every year in the United States. ...

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Top Cheap Reunion Getaway: Crystal Coast, North Carolina

The Crystal Coast of North Carolina is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award.The Crystal Coast of North Carolina is a winner of FTF's Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award. According to a national study, more than 200,000 family reunions are organized every year in the United States.  Planning a gathering while minding your wallet...

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Introducing: The 2009 FTF Teen Travel Writing Scholarship Judges

As the Family Travel Forum Teen Travel Writing Scholarship entered its third year, the experienced FTF judges were ready for anything that came their way.  However, when applications opened in May, 2009, only a handful of essay trickled in. By August, the once leisurely judges had their prayers answered as the essays overwhelmed the www.travelBIGO.com...

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Punzabo Winner Gifted By Passing Bird! (October 2008)

The winner of the October 2008 travelBIGO Punzabo Award (and $100) is Quinn Yanaga! Her essay entitled The Bird’s Gift retells the story of a rather large "present" that a bird left on the rearview mirror of her family’s rental car on their first day in England.  Since taking the trip in 2007, Quinn, who hails...

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Family Travel Forum Announces 2009 Student Travel Scholarship Winners

(New York, November 13, 2009) - Family Travel Forum (FTF), the award-winning family vacation publisher, is proud to announce the winners of its 3rd annual Teen Travel Writing Scholarship competition. More than 8,500 student travel blogs – a 30% increase over 2008 – were submitted by Americans ages 13 to 18 hoping to win a merit scholarship.Students wrote on an extraordinary range of...

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