Newfoundland has long been a tourist hub of activity for people coming to see “Iceberg Alley.” Recently, a hunk of ice of huge proportions appears to be stuck and it’s generating all kinds of interest. Remember the 150-feet that you can see are all that is out of the water, icebergs are generally much larger below the surface of the water. The peak time to view icebergs is from now until June.  This year is predicted to have the largest number of icebergs in years.

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U.S. citizens don’t need  a passport to visit Newfoundland to enjoy Iceberg Alley, however reentry to the United States will require a valid (more than 6-months until expiration) passport.

If you need to renew  or get your very first passport, we can expedite the process for you. We can also obtain passports for every member of the family. Book your flight and talk to us about obtaining your passport. We will make sure you won’t be late to enjoy Iceberg Alley this year.  Call Texas Tower at 713-874-1420 or contact us on Facebook.

 

It’s not only Wednesday and on the way to Friday, but April 19th is Humorous Day and we thought it would be a great day to look at some pranks pulled off in airports.

It can be boring on a layover waiting for your next flight. You can only watch streaming Headline News, some talk show, or watch the other travelers streaming by to their own layovers or catching flights for so long.  Here’s a few people who took self amusement to the next level, and filmed it!

Fake Outlet Prank
Have you ever been in a smaller airport with few outlets? Talk about frustrating. This prank puts up a fake outlet.

Crashing Other People’s Calls
Isn’t it annoying when someone else begins chatting loudly next to you? This guy is all of us.

Welcoming Strangers at the Airport

Greeting Mom Prank
These two sisters missed their Mom and her a very special sign.

Hope you got a smile from these pranks and have a great Humorous Day!

Texas Tower Passport and Visa is your one-stop passport and travel visa expediting service. We can get passports for every member of the family and handle travel visas for nearly every destination. Call us at 713-874-1420 or visit TexasTower.net to get started!

 

Everyone that has gone through the process of getting a U.S. passport knows the basics of how it works and to keep their passport safe. Here are five things you may not know about your U.S. passport.

  1.  The U.S. Passport is no longer the most powerful
    The power of a passport is calculated by how many countries the passport holder can visit without obtaining a travel visa. Up until the present the U.S. and U.K. were tied for first place. This year, Germany scooped them both as the most powerful passport according to the Global Passport Index.
  2.  The majority of Americans don’t have passports
    According to the latest figures from the State Department, only 38% of Americans hold current passports.
  3.  Your expiration date isn’t your expiration date
    Even though your passport reads it expires in 10 years, most countries won’t let you enter if you have less than 6 months left on your passport. So you technically have to renew after 9 years to stay current.
  4. Counterfeit passports tend to get caught
    The newest incarnation of the U.S. passport possesses over 30 security features and is very difficult to duplicate. Fraudulent passports are normally caught very quickly.
  5. The chip in your passport is high-tech
    Although passports have had chips since around 2005, the chip has evolved from then to now as much more secure. The chip is protected with a polycarbonate coating and only countries with the same technology can read and verify the chip.

If you don’t have a current passport, or you have questions about how to renew or obtain a passport, just ask us! Call us at 713-874-1420 or email info@texastower.net .

7 Beautiful Travel Destinations for Walking ToursA type of travel that is gaining rapid popularity is the guided walking tour. Small groups with local guides allow for an intimate tourist experience. Generally, the usual tourist traps are avoided and you get a real view of the country.

Often local guides will arrange for a dinner with a local family in town to give you a genuine taste of the local cuisine. Make sure your passport is ready to go (along with your most comfortable shoes) and talk to us if you need to renew your passport or require a travel visa for entry to any of the countries mentioned in this list.

1. Bhutan
A beautiful walking tour that will take you through ancient temples, small villages nestled between enormous Himalayan peaks, and rice paddies and farms worked the way they have been for thousands of years.

2. New Zealand
Known for its beaches, forests, and beautiful valleys, New Zealand is a nature lover’s dream tour. Due to the country’s geographical isolation, it has developed uniquely in its evolution with a singular ecosystem. Visit untamed frontier towns and quaint villages, all in one tour!

3. Croatia
The Dalmatian Coast is quietly becoming a must-see destination for lovers of medieval architecture, olive groves, and beautiful, rolling green hills. Island-hopping is the standard mode of tourism through this country by the sea.

4. Czech Republic
This country has walking tours that are set in villages that look like they came straight out of a fairytale. World-class breweries, charming cobblestone streets in cities like Telč, the catacombs of Tábor, and the crooked medieval lanes of Český Krumlov where you’ll see brightly painted row-houses. Prague has intriguing gothic streets to explore, and of course, sample the street food of handmade dumplings.

5. Iceland
Known as the Land of Fire and Ice, Iceland offers beautiful landscapes, black sand beaches, waterfalls, lava fields and their famous hot springs. Steeped in Viking traditions, you’ll find fjords with Minke whales and seals along with picturesque villages to explore. In the city of Reykjavík enjoy all the comforts of home and explore Europe’s largest migratory bird sanctuary at beautiful Lake Mývatn. One must-see is found in Þingvellir National Park, where you can stand at the meeting place of Iceland’s 1,000-year-old parliament.

6. Peru
Machu Picchu is a destination on the bucket list of many travelers, when you visit, make it a walking tour and really get a feel for the area. The vibrant culture of the area is filled with buzzing marketplaces, beautiful, high rising Andean peaks, and explore the ruins of the lost cities. Other great walking tour destinations in Peru include the Urubamba River Valley or the baroque architecture found in Cusco.

7. Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia
Foodies will enjoy a walking tour of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Walking tours often include a walking tour of the Night Market where all types of delicacies can be sampled. Cambodia walking tours often include the Khmer ruins which are overrun and half hidden by huge silk-cotton trees in the jungles. In Laos, you’ll see country villages and quiet pagodas while walking lush trails.

Those are just seven popular destinations to book a walking tour. Forget the tourist traps and crowded venues, see a country as it was meant to be seen with a local guiding the way.

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Traveling to a foreign land can be somewhat awkward if you don’t know the local customs. Also things that are okay to do in the U.S. may be culturally unacceptable in another country. With that in mind, Russia has published a tourism guide for travelers and it’s got some interesting advice such as “how to be a good human” and “Woman stretching hands when meeting.”

Not only is this tourist guide for individuals visiting Russia, there are helpful tips for Russian natives traveling the globe. The goal is avoid causing an “incident.” In Japan, they are advised ‘don’t dip the sushi rice into the soy sauce.’ Russian travelers are also advised to not be offended by the salty language of the people of Greece, apparently they curse like sailors.

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Russia is a destination we process travel visas for on a frequent basis. If you have any questions regarding getting your business or tourist visa, talk to us. We can make the process fast and easy.