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Luxury travel news this week

Here’s a round-up of luxury travel stories that have caught the eye this week. To make sure you receive these new weekly alerts in your web browser, please click on the red bell icon in the bottom right hand corner of the page and click ‘subscribe’ (works on desktop only – for other ways to subscribe, please click here). This will also alert you to any other posts on the blog. Should you wish, you can unsubscribe at any time, by clicking on the icon again and selecting ‘unsubscribe’. New Zealand bans dolphin swimming: People are loving them ‘too much’ Tourists in New Zealand have been banned from swimming with bottlenose dolphins because of the impact it has on the animals. New research shows people have been “loving the dolphins too much”. Interactions with the dolphins has had a “significant impact” on the population’s resting and feeding, says the department of conservation. People had been able to swim with the bottlenose dolphins in the Bay of Islands, on New Zealand’s north island… [read more] Inside the Cessna jet-set (and how to join it, yourself) The downside of travelling is, well, the travel. Crowded airports, insentient self-scan check-in screens (and even less sentient check-in staff), security queues scented with sports sock. Then there’s the sharp-elbowed, loudmouthed and germ-laden neighbouring passengers aboard a claustrophobic and stuffy aircraft. And just when you’ve really started questioning your decision to ever leave the comfort of sofa, you’re treated to the tedious immigration queues and soul-crushing baggage carousel roulette at your destination. It’s a long time since air travel has been remotely glamorous. For the general public, that is… [read more] Amazon fires not yet impacting Brazil travel Hundreds of new fires were reported this week across the Brazilian Amazon, with most of the blazes concentrated in the northwestern state of Rondonia. International uproar over the fires’ climate-change impact intensified even as two C-130 Hercules aircraft dumped hundreds of gallons of water onto the fires. The blazes generated smoky skies in Port Velho, leading to the closure of the international airport for nearly two hours. Late last week, smoke from the fires blanketed Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest city… [read more] How to get to the world’s most remote dive sites The 58-metre cruiser SS Thorfinn is gently bobbing in the mid-Pacific in Chuuk Lagoon, billed as the biggest diveable ship graveyard on the planet. On board, an audience of 20 listens avidly to a history lecture on Operation Hailstone, during the Second World War; part of a series of attacks that created the eerie underwater museum below them. Tomorrow, they’ll dive from custom-designed 32ft tenders to explore some of the 250 aircraft and 40-odd ships, encrusted with colourful coral and full to the brim with cargo ranging from rusting motorcycles and munitions to unbroken sake cups and human remains… [read more] How much does a private jet cost in 2019? The average cost of a private jet depends on some key variables – especially where you’re going, what aircraft you want to fly in, who is flying with you, and when you want to get there. For instance, a short hop from Boston to Bangor, Maine – about 30 minutes – would likely only cost $2,500 in a small plane. Yet if you were flying in a plush, customized, mid-sized private jet from Boston to Cleveland (about a 90-minute flight) you’re likely to pay more than $30,000 for the ride. Of course, it also depends on whether you want to buy or simply lease a private jet as you go… [read more] We really enjoy hearing from our readers and would love to hear your views on any of these stories! Please click on the comments below and share your thoughts. Thank you. Have a story you’d like to share? Please contact us for details.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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  1. That’s got to be the most extensive guide to private jet travel that I’ve ever seen. It really does lay it on the line that it is probably even more cpsnsive than you had ever imagined. Price jet ownership is even more expensive than you ever imagined. It is a luxury that only the seriously mega rich can afford..

  2. Regarding the New Zealand dolphin-swimming story I think that is definitely time that we tightened up on a lot of these wildlife experiences. We certainly need to think far more about the animal’s welfare than just the bottom line of profit. We all know what happens so often, it’s the care and concern for the animals that gets squeezed so that the profits grow.

    1. Very true, Karen… I read today about how the Japanese whaling industry has re-opened after a 30-year hiatus, and interestingly how the Japanese can’t understand what all the fuss is about. It seems there are some very strong cultural differences around the world – the Japanese have been whaling for centuries – that further complicates reaching any consensus in opinion on these matters.

  3. On the piece on the remote divesites the ship SS Thorfinn sounds perfect for me. Staying at a resort is a bit half-hearted, after a dive, when you want to talk about your amazing experiences, it’s very tame to go back to a resort where people are doing little more than lying on a sun-lounger sipping their cocktails. I always want to talk about the dive and keep living it. Having a lecture on Operation Hailstorm to set the scene and fill in all the historical background would set you up brilliantly for the dive. It would all be so much more meaningful.

  4. Good news that people are still travelling to Brazil. If the world keeps its eyes on the Amazon and keeps people talking about it then that is a best chance of putting pressure on the Brazilian government with sensible global support to preserve the “world’s lungs” as the forests are increasingly coming to be called. We need to keep the Amazon at the top of the world’s agenda.

    1. Apparently, the number of fires in the Amazon in August tripled when compared with the same month last year. That is rather alarming and I wonder why there’s been such a large increase in such a short space of time.

  5. I’m quite surprised by dolphin swimming being banned in New Zealand. I can imagine it being very popular, but it’s a shame to think these beautiful creatures have been negatively affected by too many people interfering. Surely it would have been better to reduce the numbers of tourists swimming with them, perhaps to avoid it getting to this point. I wonder if Florida have found similar because that’s hugely popular for swimming with dolphins.

    It’s heartbreaking to read about the Amazon fires. And yet I don’t think it’s had anywhere near as much press as it should have. I saw it described as the ‘lungs of the world’ and I thought that was such a lovely way of putting it. The devastation is hard to imagine, and it’s it must be incredibly disheartening to be working there to put out the fires only to find new ones crop up in their place. I really do hope the end is in sight, it’s incredibly concerning to think how much has been destroyed.

  6. The Diveworld piece is quite an eye-opener. I just never know that so many diving opportunities existed worldwide. It makes for quite an enlightening read. I’m glad comforts have moved on from the days when the number of showers that you could have each week was rationed. I’ve only just started diving so these sort of trips are way beyond my ability at the moment but it certainly gives me something to work towards.

    1. I’ve never learnt to dive but would like to as there are some amazing opportunities out there. We could have done a PADI course when we were on honeymoon but the thought of spending our evenings studying books in order to meet the grade didn’t really appeal at that particular time!

  7. The intro to the piece on private jet travel comes up with a fairly convincing and lengthy list of problems with travel. Sharp-elbowed, loud and germ ridden fellow passengers to sum it up in a nutshell.

    Though in spite of this the travel industry just continues to grow. More airports, more flights and more passengers arriving at the ever growing number of hotels.

    It can’t be all bad. Despite all the drawbacks the pros have got to outweigh the cons otherwise we wouldn’t put ourselves through all the hassle.

    1. Now you’re getting into deep waters! Why do people keep travelling even though there are always frustrations and problems. Last year, after a 12 hour over night flight I was stuck in an hour queue for passport control in Mauritius vowing that I’d never travel again. After the welcome cocktail at my hotel, a room with a beach view and a quick dip in the Indian Ocean, I was planning my next holiday despite all the traumas of the travel.

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