Trypp’s Travel Intelligence

ImageThe elephants are back at Mfuwe Lodge in Zambia on their annual trek for their favorite wild mango treats.  Check out the pictures on the link.  After viewing the last two on the bottom row, I’ve vowed never to pick on Teezer the Golden Retriever if she has an “accident”!


Above link from the Chicago Tribune is good advice on car rental insurance coverage.

One big mistake car renters make is assuming personal insurance coverage also covers a rental car.  Maybe not. . .

  • If the driver is not listed on the rental contract as an extra driver, his/her or the personal auto insurance coverage of the renter might not cover costs associated with damage to the rental.   (The more economical car insurance companies charge a fee for extra drivers, so sometimes is less expensive to go with a premium car rental company when more than one person will be driving the rental car.)
  • If damage to the rental car due to something prohibited in the rental contract (e.g., driving off-road or even a gravel or dirt road or driveway), personal car rental policies might not cover the damage.

Remember, you are liable for the deductible on your personal car insurance policy for damage to the rental car.

Do consider purchasing the car rental option with travel insurance coverage for your trip offered by companies specializing in trip insurance (TravelEx, Travel Guard, etc.).  It is often less expensive than either the liability coverage offered by the car rental companies or the deductible on your personal car insurance, but you get COMPLETE trip coverage (baggage loss and delays, refund of trip costs for covered cancellation, medical treatment and evacuation, etc.).

I can help you with insurance details for you trip, whether it be complete “cancel-for-any-reason” coverage, or just enough to cover basics, such as a car rental mishap.

Great advice from our host agency’s CEO, Robert Polk, about personal safety when traveling, especially to Mexico.

From a steamy seduction scene of double entendre to a honeymoon in the upper berth, Cary Grant and Eve Marie Saint sizzle during the cross-country train scenes in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic suspense thriller, North By Northwest.  As Grant deadpanned, “Beats flying, doesn’t it?”

Hitchcock apparently thought so, setting scenes on trains throughout his illustrious directing career on both sides of The Pond:  The 39 Steps, Strangers on a Train, Shadow of a Doubt, and The Lady Vanishes, to name just a few.  Such was the Golden Era of Streamliner travel.

Train Holidays creates the ambiance of that era with a limited opportunity for glamorous seduction North by Northwest aboard a beautifully restored 1940’s-style private Streamliner Train.  For four trips only this Summer, 30 passengers will travel the Canadian Rockies from Seattle to Banff.  The Great Western Limited rolls through majestic scenery over the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, passing through the Cascade Mountains along the Skykomish River by day.  Fully hosted, the 8-day journey includes stops with sightseeing at Whitefish, Glacier National Park, Waterton Lake, Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, and 4 fabulous nights in Banff.

A choice of Pullman accommodations onboard features  luxurious bedding, turn-down service and private facilities.   Sumptuous meals are freshly prepared by the onboard chef and served in the dining and lounge areas with the gracious elegance of white linen and fresh roses on each table.

The tariff includes:

  • Accommodations and all meals, wines and spirits aboard the train.
  • Overnight deluxe hotel accommodations at Grouse Mountain Lodge in Whitefish; Prince of Wales Lodge at Waterton Lake; and 4 nights at the Banff Park Lodge.
  • Daily breakfast , one day at Chateau Lake Louise; lunch at Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump; and dinner at Le Beaujolais overlooking the Bow River.
  • Complete sightseeing including “Going to the Sun Highway” and Lake McDonald cruise at Glacier National Park; and gondola ride up Sulphur Mountain, Moraine Lake and Lake Louise, Yoho National Park while in Banff.
  • Services of a professional tour manager for entire trip.
  • Transfers to Calgary airport.

Tours depart June 24, July 22, August 19 and September 16.  Availability limited.

For complete details, quotes and reservations on this Unforgettable Journey, contact Judy Duran, CTA, 720 270-5767;

Just got an e-mail flash with a link to the Terry Fator website.  If you go to Las Vegas, don’t miss his incredible show — I’ve seen it twice in one year!

2007 winner of America’s Got Talent, Fator is, indeed, a remarkably talented man:  Ventriliquist, impressionist, comedian and puppet creator.  Fator appears most Tuesdays through Saturdays in The Terry Fator Theater at the Mirage .

But more than talent, Fator is simply a nice guy.  He allows the use of flash photography and recording devices during his performance.  He signs autographs after most shows until the last fan leaves.  The profits from his Mirage gift shop go towards assisting the families of US service men and women deployed overseas.  He supports several charities.  His show is full of patriotic pride and clean enough for my 86-year-old mother to enjoy.  While his humor is adult, unlike so many comic acts and Las Vegas shows, his performance is not profane or raunchy.

Fator’s proverbial white hat goodness comes from a sincere gratitude for his fans.  He quite frankly tells his audience he was able to break out of one-night-stands in Tippacanoe and Tyler, too, into a reported $100 million 5-year contract at the Mirage because his fans voted him into the America’s Got Talent top slot.  With so many celebrities blaming their woes on the zealous pursuit of their fans, it’s refreshing to encounter a talent who actually appreciates his fans and the recognition they’ve given him.

My favorite Fator characters are country singer Walter T Airedale, the character Fator has worked with the longest; Vicki the Cougar who compares herself to fine wine (the older she gets, the easier she goes down!); and Duggie Scott Walker, Fator’s annoying Mary Jane-smoking neighbor who sees strobe lights and hears heavy metal music everywhere.  What Fator does with Cher and a little audience participation is absolutely side-splitting!

Fator’s website is, which has links to his blog, charities, performance schedule, etc.

Here’s a ticket tip for Fator’s Mirage performances:  If you arrive in Las Vegas without tickets to Fator’s show, the box office at the Mirage often has same-day performance tickets for MUCH less than the vendors hawking last-minute tickets along the strip.  Show up in person at the box office in the Mirage Casino.  Don’t be put off if the only seats left are in the last row — the first time I saw Fator, this is exactly where I sat.  I can honestly say there is not a bad seat in the house, including those in the last row.  It’s a fairly small theater with closed-circuit TV’s throughout.

Better yet, get your seats before you arrive as part of your Las Vegas vacation package.  Contact me for details on this Unforgettable Journey:  Judy Duran, CTA; 720 270-5767;

For Immediate Release
April 27, 2011
Judy Duran, CTA
Contact: 720.270.5767;

Announcing a New 4-Star Resort on Michigan’s Lower Peninsula 

Grand Traverse Resort Village

MLT Vacations.  The new Grand Traverse Resort & Spa is nestled along the sandy shores of Lake Michigan’s Grand Traverse Bay, just 6 miles northeast of Traverse City.  Accommodations at the full-service, 900-acre resort and conference center include rooms, suites and condominiums.  King rooms are available in the Main Hotel Building.  The King and Queen rooms in the Tower Building overlook rolling hills and surrounding golf course or East Grand Traverse Bay.

A diverse selection of dining options is available at:

  • Aerie Restaurant and Lounge – casual dining
  • Sweetwater American Bistro – casual selections
  • The Grille – club fare (open during golf season from April to October)
  • Jacks Sports Bar – appetizers, full bar, and flat-screen TVs

The Resort boasts 54 holes of championship golf on 3 courses including the Jack Nicklaus-designed The Bear and The Wolverine, a Gary Player signature golf course.  Guests enjoy the thrill of a 15,000-square foot water playground at one of the two indoor pools.  A private beach is located on the shore of East Grand Traverse Bay offering a variety of rental options, including jet skis, jet boats, pontoon boats, ski boats, water trampoline, paddle boats, and 1- and 2-person kayaks. Other amenities include seasonal recreation; 2 outdoor pools; children’s center; spa and fitness center; and 5 indoor and 4 outdoor tennis courts.  Winter offers cross-country skiing and ice-skating at the resort, plus access to nearly 200 miles of groomed snowmobile trails.  Shopping at the Gallery of Shops is a delightful year-round activity.


From left:  Golf Course; Indoor Water Park; Dog House Pet Care Facility

Complimentary WiFi is available throughout the property.  Children 17-years-of-age and younger stay free with adult when using existing bedding. Additional guest services include bell service, dry cleaning, business center, licensed day care, and dog care facility.  The nightly resort fee is included in price.

The Grand Traverse is just 10 minutes from Traverse City’s Cherry Capital Airport (TVC), with air service by both Delta and United Airlines.  Packages, including air and ground transportaion, are available from MLT Vacations.

Contact Judy Duran (720 270-5767; for information and reseervations.