Egypt Independent: Living-Main news en Airlines with the best in-flight service <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p><span style="line-height: normal;">Qantas and Singapore Airlines dominate a new ranking of the best in luxury air travel.</span></p><div>Editors at <u><a href=""></a></u> have released their picks for the airlines that offer the best in-flight service in first class, business class, premium economy and long-haul economy class cabins.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Qantas and Singapore Airlines cracked the top 10 list across all four categories, while Air New Zealand, Cathay Pacific Airways and Etihad made three of the four categories.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The winners were chosen from a pool of 450 airlines.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Here are the winners, listed in alphabetical order:</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>First Class:</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>All Nippon Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Lufthansa, Qantas, Singapore Airlines, Swiss and Thai International</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Business Class:</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Air France, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Etihad Airways, Japan Airlines, Qatar, Qantas, Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia/Atlantic</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Premium Economy:</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Air France, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, EVA Air, Japan Airlines, Qantas, Singapore Airlines and Virgin Atlantic/Virgin Australia</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Long Haul Economy Class:</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Air New Zealand, Cathay Pacific Airways, Etihad, EVA Air, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines and Thai Airways.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div> Fri, 09 Oct 2015 11:42:00 +0000 AFP 2459041 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/07/09/501010/singapore_07-09-15.jpg Best times to book cheaper hotel rooms <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p><span style="line-height: normal;">An online reservation site has come up with the best times to book a hotel after analyzing prices at 25 of the most popular tourist destinations around the world.</span></p><div>And according to their data, overall, the cheapest time to book hotels is at the beginning of the year, as room rates were below average in 22 of the 25 markets studied by <u><a href="">Singapore-based</a></u>.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>On the other hand, the findings suggest avoiding September and October, which emerged as the most expensive months for hotel rooms.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>For the report, authors culled the booking data from millions of guests who used in 2014.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Travelers eyeing a trip to Europe are also advised to visit mid-March, when room rates in Paris, Berlin, Rome, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Stockholm and London are about 20 percent less than average.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>And if you&#39;re New York or Sydney-bound, book a room in July.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div> Fri, 09 Oct 2015 09:45:00 +0000 AFP 2459031 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/08/10/501184/eiffel_tower.jpg Get set for exciting theme park rides in 2016 <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>The world&rsquo;s largest, multi-lane water slide is set to open next year in the United States, sending thrill seekers careening down toboggans at speeds of up to 40 ft per sec (12.2m per sec).</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Standing 60 feet tall (18m), the Six Flags franchise will add another multi-lane Wahoo Racer &ndash; the largest of its kind in the world &ndash; to their Six Flags White Water location in Marietta, Georgia, when it opens in May.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The record for tallest water slide goes to the Verruckt at the Schlitterbahn Waterpark in Kansas City, with its 168ft (51m) drop.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>At the Six Flags location, thrill seekers will barrel down six aerodynamic toboggan slides set side by side on two-tiered mat sliders that twist and turn before stretching out into track-style sprinting lanes.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Here are a few more highly anticipated attractions to look forward to in 2016:</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios Hollywood</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Harry Potter fans on the West Coast (US) will get their version of the popular theme park attraction when it opens in spring 2016 at Universal Studios Hollywood. Like its sister site in Orlando, the park in California will recreate the magical world of Hogwarts, with the addition of an amped up version of theHarry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride which will feature 3D technology.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Frozen Ever After, Walt Disney World, Epcot</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Guests of the ride will be taken to the wintry setting of Arendelle, where they will visit Queen Elsa&rsquo;s ice palace, the North Mountain and the Bay of Arendelle in a Viking boat, set to the film&rsquo;s soundtrack.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Stark Expo, Hong Kong Disneyland&rsquo;s Tomorrowland</strong></div><p><br /><span style="line-height: normal;">When it opens in 2016, the Stark Expo at Hong Kong Disneyland&rsquo;s Tomorrowland will become the first Disney attraction based on a Marvel character. The expo will feature life-like replicas of varying stages of Iron Man suits and bring other Stark innovations and the man himself to life, as visitors will be able to take photos with Iron Man. The ride, set in the streets and skies of Hong Kong, will allow guests to take flight with the superhero.&nbsp;</span></p> Thu, 08 Oct 2015 14:58:00 +0000 AFP 2459014 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/10/08/43/flight_slidenew.jpg Awards name best luxury, value and dining cruise lines <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>Shopping for a cruise holiday? Experts at one of the biggest online cruise sites have released their picks in categories that cover all budgets and needs.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>In the eighth edition of the Cruise Critic Editors&#39; Picks Awards, judges named Crystal Cruises the best luxury brand, while giving Carnival Cruises the award for best value for money.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Other big winners include Viking Star, which was named best new ship of 2015. Editors compared the ship with a boutique hotel and praised the inclusive package for offering complimentary WiFi, alcoholic beverages at meal times, and a free shore excursion in every port.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>New this year, the awards have been expanded to include river cruises.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>Here are the winners:</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Best New Ship: Viking Star (Viking Ocean Cruises)</div><div>Best Ship Refurbishment: Star Breeze (Windstar Cruises)</div><div>Best for Luxury: Crystal Cruises</div><div>Best for Families: Royal Caribbean International</div><div>Best Itineraries: Azamara Club Cruises</div><div>Best for Adventure: Un-Cruise Adventures</div><div>Best Value-for-Money: Carnival Cruise Line</div><div>Best Dining: Celebrity Cruises</div><div>Best Entertainment: Royal Caribbean International</div><div>Best Suites: Royal Caribbean International</div><div>Best Inside Cabins: Disney Cruise Line</div><div>Best Standard Cabins: MSC Cruises</div><div>Best Shore Excursions: Azamara Club Cruises</div><div>Best for Romance: Windstar Cruises</div><div>Best Nightlife: Norwegian Cruise Line</div><div>Best North American Homeport: Port Canaveral</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><strong>2015 Cruise Critic Editors&#39; Picks Awards (River)</strong></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Best River Cruise Line: Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection</div><div>Best New River Ship: SS Maria Theresa (Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection)</div><div>Best Dining: AmaWaterways</div><div>Best Cabins: Avalon Waterways</div><div>Best Enrichment: Grand Circle Cruise Line</div><div>Best Shore Excursions: Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection</div><div>Best for Active Cruisers: AmaWaterways</div><div>Best Itineraries: Viking River Cruises</div><div>Best Value-for-Money: Emerald Waterways.</div><div>&nbsp;</div> Thu, 08 Oct 2015 13:17:00 +0000 AFP 2459005 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/10/08/43/screen_shot_2015-10-08_at_2.25.03_pm.png