This Week’s Blog: Just the Facts.

From the Desk of the U.S. TRAVEL ASSOCIATION:

U.S. Travel Association - www.ustravel.org

U.S. Travel Association

SOME VERY INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT THE TRAVEL INDUSTRY!

LEISURE TRAVEL

■ Direct spending on leisure travel by domestic and international travelers totaled $564 billion in 2011.

■ Spending on leisure travel generated $86 billion in tax revenue.

■ 3 out of 4 domestic trips taken are for leisure purposes (77%).

■ U.S. residents logged 1.5 billion person-trips for leisure purposes in 2011.

■ Top 5 leisure travel activities for U.S. domestic travelers: (1) visiting relatives; (2) shopping; (3) visiting friends; (4) fine dining; and (5) beaches.

12532 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, CA 91604818-762-0676  joshuawwilletttravel@gmail.com

Willett Travel 12532 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, CA 91604 818-762-0676 x326
joshuawwilletttravel@gmail.com  CST#2002558-10

BUSINESS TRAVEL

■ Direct spending on business travel by domestic and international travelers, including expenditures on meetings, events and incentive programs (ME&I), totaled $249 billion in 2011.

■ ME&I travel accounted for $99 billion of all business travel spending.

■ U.S. residents logged 458 million person-trips for business purposes in 2011, with more than one-third (36%) for meetings and events.

■ For every dollar invested in business travel, businesses benefit from an average of $12.50 in increased revenue and $3.80 in new profits.

(Person-trip defined as one person on a trip away from home overnight in paid accommodations or on a day or overnight trip 50 miles one-way or more from home.)

Horizon Air - Alaska Airlines at LAX (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Horizon Air – Alaska Airlines at LAX (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL

■ In 2011, international traveler spending (export receipts) totaled $153 billion and travel spending abroad by Americans totaled $110 billion (travel import payments), creating a trade surplus of $43 billion in favor of the U.S.

■ The U.S.received 62.3 million international arrivals in 2011. Of those, approximately 27.9 million were from overseas markets and 34.4 million were from Canada and Mexico.

■ The United States’ share of total international arrivals is 6.4% (down from 7.5% in 2000).

■ International travel spending directly supported about 1.2 million U.S. jobs and wages of $28.5 billion.

■ Each overseas traveler spends approximately $4,300 when they visit the U.S. and stay on average more than 17 nights.

■ Overseas arrivals represent 45% of all international arrivals, yet account for 78% of total international travel receipts.

■ Greatest challenges facing international visitors: burdensome visa process; unwelcoming entry experience.

■ Top 5 leisure travel activities for overseas visitors: (1) shopping; (2) dining; (3) city sightseeing; (4) visiting historical places; and (5) amusement/theme parks.

U.S. Travel Association

U.S. Travel Association – http://www.ustravel.org

The U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $1.9 trillion in economic output. It is the voice for the collective interests of the U.S. travel industry and the association’s 1,400 member organizations. U.S. Travel’s mission is to promote and facilitate increased travel to and within the United States.

Pic of the Day 23-MAR-13: Malibu Sunset

Who likes Sunsets? (Or do you like sunrises better?)

Malibu Sunset - Pacific Palisades, California (copyright 2010 Joshua Weisel)

Malibu Sunset – Pacific Palisades, California (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

The evening view at Pacific Coast Highway and Coastline Drive.

Who doesn’t like California?

Contact me at joshuawwilletttravel@gmail.com to plan your next vacation to the left coast.

22-MAR-13: Do You Like Disney? (or do you LOVE DISNEY?)

I’m a certified DISNEY DESTINATIONS GENIUS!

Disney Destination Genius

Mark Twain's Steamboat - Disneyland, California (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

Mark Twain’s Steamboat – Disneyland, California (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

Mark Twain’s Steamboat is an attraction, located at the Disneyland, California theme park in Anaheim.  Passengers embark on a 150-ton, 28-foot-high, 105-foot-long riverboat for a scenic 12-minute journey around the Rivers of America which departs every 25 minutes. Originally named Mark Twain Steamboat and located in the Frontierland section of the park.when the park opened in 1955, the stately, 5/8-scale stern-wheeler was the first functional riverboat to be built in the United States for fifty years. 

Special “travel agent only” offers on Disney resorts, hotels, park admission, packages, Disney Cruises, Disney Adventures and the Aulani in Hawaii are usually available.

http://www.facebook.com/joshwilltravelhttp://www.twitter.com/joshwilltravel

RETURN TO HOMEPAGE: http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com

21-MAR-13: Washington Monument and the Reflecting Pool

The Washington Monument and the Reflecting Pool – National Mall, Washington D.C.

Washington Monument, Reflecting Pool from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial - Washington D.C. (copyright 2010 Joshua Weisel)

Washington Monument and the Reflecting Pool from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial – Washington D.C. (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

The Washington Monument is the most prominent structure in Washington, D.C.

The 555-foot, 5-1/8″ marble obelisk was built between 1848 and 1884 as a tribute to George Washington’s military leadership from 1775-1783 during the American Revolution. He led the Continental Army to victory, and then became the nation’s first president under the Constitution.  Construction took place in two major phases, 1848-56, and 1876-84.  The monument was dedicated on February 21, 1885, and officially opened to the public on October 9, 1888. http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/wash/dc72.htm

The Washington Monument was closed for repairs from damage caused by the 5.8 magnitude earthquake on August 23, 2011, but is now open again!

Washington Monument National Park Homepage: http://www.nps.gov/wamo/index.htm

http://www.facebook.com/joshwilltravelhttp://www.twitter.com/joshwilltravel

RETURN TO HOMEPAGE:

http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com

20-MAR-13: Like Cruisin’?

Have you ever been Cruisin’?
Which cruise line and where did you sail to? How did you ‘LIKE’ the experience?

Crystal Cruises' Crystal Symphony (copyright CrystalCruises.com - used with permission)

Crystal Cruises’ Award Winning All Inclusive Luxury Cruise Ship “Crystal Symphony” (copyright CrystalCruises.com – used with permission)

There’s a lot of bad press about cruise vacations recently, thanks to Carnival Cruises’ recent troubles.  But Carnival’s troubles means the rest of the cruise industry is offering great deals on amazing experiences all around the world.  Extra savings for early bookings!  Where do you want to go?

http://www.facebook.com/joshwilltravelhttp://www.twitter.com/joshwilltravel

RETURN TO HOMEPAGE: http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com

Pic of the Day 19-MAR-13: Ventura Sunset 4B&W

Ventura, California

Ventura Sunset 4B&W - Ventura, California (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

Ventura Sunset 4B&W – Ventura, California (copyright 2010 JoshWillTravel)

Ventura (officially the City of San Buenaventura; and called San Buenaventura until 1891) is located northwest of Los Angeles on the California coast.  Ventura has a Mediterranean climate, typical of most coastal Southern California cities, with the sea breeze off the Pacific Ocean moderating temperatures.

Contact me at joshuawwilletttravel@gmail.com to plan your next getaway to Ventura, Oxnard, Ojai, Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez!

Pic of the Day 18-MAR-13: London Hotel – West Hollywood

London Hotel – West Hollywood

Passages of Distinction Luxury Travel “Roadshow 2013 – Your Destination Awaits You.”

London Hotel - West Hollywood (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

The London Hotel – West Hollywood, California  www.thelondonwesthollywood.com (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Experience unparalleled style at The London West Hollywood. This award-winning West Hollywood hotel offers chic accommodation and sophisticated service.
Contact me at joshuawwilletttravel@gmail.com to plan your next luxury hotel stay!

YOSEMITE 2011 – Part 3 Down in the Valley: Yosemite Valley

Yosemite Roadtrip 2011

This is PART 3 – GET READY FOR MORE OF NATURE’S AWESOME BEAUTY!!!

El Capitan - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

El Capitan – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

To view PART 1 – click this link:

https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2013/03/03/yosemite-2011-part-1-road-trip-to-tuolumne-meadows/

To view PART 2 – click this link:

https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2013/03/10/yosemite-2011-part-2-tuolumne-meadows/

PART 3 – Down in the Valley: Yosemite Valley

At the end of PART 2 we left off at Olmstead Point on Monday morning, heading down into Yosemite Valley, destination: Yosemite Lodge.  More pictures from Olmstead Point:

Granite Dome near Olmstead Point - Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Granite Dome near Olmstead Point – Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Half Dome from Olmstead Point - Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 Aaron Barth)

Half Dome from Olmstead Point – Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Half Dome from Olmstead Point - Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Half Dome from Olmstead Point – Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

The drive from Tuolumne Meadows to Yosemite Valley takes about an hour and a half.  There are lots of places to turnout and stop along the way.  We stopped for pictures and used the facilities at a picnic area on our way to Yosemite Lodge.

Picture Point along the Tioga Road - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Picture Point along the Tioga Road – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

We arrived at Yosemite Lodge too early in the day and even though we were able to check in, our room wouldn’t be ready for a few hours.  We were given the Lodge WiFi password, which enables you to access park visitor information via your mobile device, nice technological extra for the “internet generation”.  We thought about taking the Valley Tour, where you ride around in an open air bus, but instead we parked the car and hopped the shuttle to our first adventure, just past Curry Village: the hike to the base of Half Dome and what used to be Mirror Lake.

Half Dome from the trail to Mirror Lake - Yosemite, Calfiornia (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Half Dome from the trail to Mirror Lake – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Half Dome is a granite dome at the eastern end of Yosemite Valley. Yosemite’s most familiar rock formation, the crest rises more than 4,737 ft above the valley floor. On March 28, 2009, a large rock slide of 1,500,000 cubic feet occurred from Ahwiyah Point. The slide damaged a large area under the dome. No one was injured but hundreds of trees were knocked down and a portion of the Mirror Lake trail was buried. The slide registered an earthquake reading of 2.5 on the Richter scale.

Trail to the base of Half Dome and Mirror Lake - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Trail to the base of Half Dome and Mirror Lake – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Mirror Lake is a small, seasonal lake located on Tenaya Creek between North Dome and Half Dome. It is the last remnant of a large glacial lake that once filled most of Yosemite Valley at the end of the last Ice Age, and is close to disappearing due to sediment accumulation.

Half Dome from Mirror Lake - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Half Dome from Mirror Lake – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

The road from the shuttle stop is only accessible by walking, bicycle or park transport for disabled visitors.  It’s a nice hike, and of course, wherever you go in Yosemite, carry drinking water and prepare for changes in the weather.  We hiked out to the picnic area at Mirror Lake, enjoyed the area for a time and then hike back and caught the shuttle bus to Yosemite Village.  As you can see, it was a beautiful day, and the weather was warm.  It was the Monday of the weekend after Labor Day, so schools were in session and the valley was less crowded than during the Summer season.

Half Dome from across the valley - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 Joshua Weisel)

Half Dome from across the valley – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

We visited the Visitor’s Center, the Ansel Adams Gallery and the Village Store.  I grabbed a burger at the grill and we sat outside on the patio with German tourists.  After lunch we hiked over to the base of Yosemite Falls.

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Falls - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Falls – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Falls is the highest measured waterfall in North America.  It is a major attraction in the park, especially in late spring when the water flow is at its peak.  The total 2,425 feet from the top of the upper falls to the base of the lower falls qualifies Yosemite Falls as the sixth highest waterfall in the world.

Lower Yosemite Falls - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Lower Yosemite Falls – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

After a short hike back to the Lodge we checked in again and got our room keys (no keycards here).  The Yosemite Lodge is basically bare bones motel accomodations.  After the flood, they took out most of the cabins, and now there are just a number of two-story motel buildings surrounding the Lodge proper and the shops and dining rooms.  It’s definitely NOT the Ahwahnee Hotel, but compared to the tent cabins and communal shower at Tuolumne Lodge, it’s luxury. Actually it’s wonderful to have a warm bed, with a private shower and toilet, after roughing it in the rain and cold.  We put our stuff in the room and then drove over to Sentinel Beach (yes there is a beach) and the less traveled end of the valley for some more sightseeing.

Sentinel Beach - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Sentinel Beach – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

When you visit the valley to fully enjoy the park, be sure to get to the less traveled areas.   At Sentinel Beach, we were almost alone, so we made friends with a Raven.

Quote the Raven "Nevermore" Sentinel Beach - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Raven at Sentinel Beach – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

North Dome - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

North Dome – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

North Dome is a granite dome and is the southern summit of Indian Ridge on the northeastern wall of Yosemite Valley.

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Sentinel Rock – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Bridalveil Falls - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Bridalveil Falls – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

El Capitan - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

El Capitan – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

El Capitan is a granite monolith located on the north side of Yosemite Valley near its western end. It towers over Yosemite about 3,000 feet from base to summit along its tallest face, and is one of the world’s favorite challenges for rock climbers.

Base of  El Capitan - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Near the Base of El Capitan – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Cathedral Rock and Cathedral Spires - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Cathedral Rock and Spires – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

We drove back to the lodge and had dinner at the dining hall/cafeteria.  They have different food stations and there are lots of tasty choices and the food prices reflect the vendor monopoly in the park.  I had the chicken sandwich and my stepbrother had fish.  After dinner we went back to the room took showers and got cleaned up.  Then we went over to the Mountain Room Bar and watched Monday Night Football and had a beer.

Mountain Room at Yosemite Lodge (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Mountain Room at Yosemite Lodge (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

It was a clear night, the moon was full and there were many stars visible in the sky.  So, before going to bed I went for a night hike around the Lodge.  After a good night’s sleep, we woke up early, grabbed a quick breakfast and coffee at the dining hall/cafeteria and hit the road heading west out of the valley.

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Tuesday sunrise on El Capitan - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Tuesday sunrise on El Capitan – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

We stopped at the Wawona Tunnel View picture point on the way out and got some great pics.

Sunrise on Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Sunrise on Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Wawona Tunnel - Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Wawona Tunnel – Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Wawona Tunnel - Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Wawona Tunnel – Yosemite, California (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

The drive home was uneventful.  We stopped for lunch at a diner along the freeway and I had a great breakfast.  We hit some rain coming back into Los Angeles, but made good time and avoided the speed traps.

Driving the freeway home (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

Driving the freeway home (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

It was a great weekend!  My stepbrother covered the cost of the tent cabin and lodge and I paid for the meals and gas.  We had a great time (except for the altitude sickness) and saw a lot in the short time we were there.  These are just a sampling of the pictures we took and the things we saw.  It was great to get back to Tuolumne Meadows and Yosemite Valley and I’ll probably write about my previous trips another time.  If you’ve made it all the way through please leave a comment or LIKE this if you liked it.

Thanks for reading my blog.  I hope you enjoyed the pictures.  I encourage everyone to visit Yosemite National Park, because the pictures can’t compare to the wonders of nature experienced first hand.

Use the links below to FOLLOW and LIKE us on other social media!

RIGHT CLICK and “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW LINKS>

LIKE us on Facebook> http://www.facebook.com/joshwilltravel

FOLLOW us on Twitter and Periscope> http://www.periscope.tv/joshwilltravel

RETURN TO HOMEPAGE: http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com

RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW OUR YOUTUBE PAGE!>

The “JoshWillTravel AdventureScope” is now available on Youtube!>
(And our Periscope videos from Katch are now posted on YouTube)
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoP3QQfRTfD-2eABWVd-JwQ

Taking pictures with my Blackberry in Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 Aaron Barth)

Taking pictures with my Blackberry in Yosemite Valley (copyright 2011 JoshWillTravel)

17-MAR-13: Ireland! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Who wants to go to Ireland?

HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY!  Don’t Drink and Drive!

Ireland, green fields, a rainbow and sheep!

Ireland: lush green fields, a rainbow (maybe a pot of gold) and sheep!

Visit the Emerald Isle!

Use the links below to FOLLOW and LIKE us on other social media!

RIGHT CLICK and “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW LINKS>

LIKE us on Facebook> http://www.facebook.com/joshwilltravel

FOLLOW us on Twitter and Periscope> http://www.periscope.tv/joshwilltravel

RETURN TO HOMEPAGE: http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com

RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW OUR YOUTUBE PAGE!>

The “JoshWillTravel AdventureScope” is now available on Youtube!>
(And our Periscope videos from Katch are now posted on YouTube)
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoP3QQfRTfD-2eABWVd-JwQ