Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Trip Ideas - Travel Awards

Last night I read the latest issue (Nov. 2009) of one of my favorite travel magazines, ITN. They just announced a new award for travelers; the Phileas Fogg award. The award is so new that it is not yet listed on ITN's website. The concept of qualifying for an award seemed like a decent blog post. Some travelers need an inspiration, a challenge, to get outta town.

ITN travel awards are available only to subscribers and represent travels to a certain number of places. There are awards for visiting all 7 continents, all countries in Africa/Europe/CentAm/SoAm, all 24 time zones, and more.

Here is the complete list of ITN's travel awards and requirements:
  • Phileas Fogg - visit destinations from "Around the World in 80 Days"
  • 100 Nations - visit 100 of the 195 listed
  • Quarto Mondo - visit 49 countries
  • Travel is My Forte - visit 40 countries
  • World Traveler - visit the 40 most popular nations
  • ITN Globetrotter - visit the 20 most popular nations
  • 24 Time Zones
  • Continents - separate awards for 6 and 7 continents
  • Following the Equator - 13 countries at the center of the world
  • All of Africa - all 53 countries
  • Half of Africa - 27 of the 53
  • All of Europe - all 44 countries
  • All South America - 13
  • All Central America - 7
Subscribers can receive a certificate by confirming their travels--checking off the countries on a list or listing the month/year of visit. No receipts or documentation is necessary. Each certificate costs around $7. Each issue lists several recipients in the different award categories so people evidently like this program. I can imagine undergoing the challenge of completing the tasks but being realtively unfulfilled with a paper certificate. Perhaps it is said best by ITN in describing their Following the Equator certificate: "It's perfect for covering up cracks in a wall."

BTW, ITN will send you a FREE sample copy.

In my next post, I will write about some other trip ideas. Meanwhile, let me know what you think about these awards or if you know of other awards. What travel challenges have you or someone you know attempted? How about all of the tours offered by A&K, Rick Steves, or Tauck?

© 2009, Charles McCool

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