Tag: benefits

4 Benefits You Need From Your Travel Credit Card in 2021 | Travel

If your credit card is helping you earn gobs of points, you don’t want to lose them just because your trip got canceled — so choose your currencies carefully.

4. Statement credits for at-home spending, like takeout or streaming

One of the most delightful aspects about travel credit cards is the benefits you get that you might not otherwise pay for yourself, but that improve your experiences: lounge access, airport restaurant credits or upgraded boarding. Even if you’re not traveling, the same logic applies to non-travel perks.

Especially now, issuers are throwing in benefits designed for sheltering in place. As an example, you’ll find credits for Variis by Equinox, an app designed by the gym that brings Equinox’s workouts to your living room. Plus, more cards offer credits toward takeout or discounts on delivery, so you have a good excuse to order in from the new pizza place you’ve been pining for. And keep an eye out for special offers on streaming services, so you can finally binge that new hit show everyone is talking about.

You might not be the kind of person who’d pay for a Disney+ subscription or a Peloton membership on your own, but when it’s free or discounted thanks to your credit card, you may find that Baby Yoda and yoga can make your social-distanced life just a bit better.

The bottom line

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Army Corps of Engineers extends America the Beautiful Military Recreation Pass benefits to veterans and Gold Star families

Army Corps of Engineers extends America the Beautiful Military Recreation Pass benefits to veterans and Gold Star families

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2020

WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced today it will expand eligibility for benefits under the America the Beautiful Military Annual Recreation Pass.

Beginning Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2020, all U.S. military veterans and Gold Star family members will be eligible to enter USACE-managed recreation areas free of charge where a day use recreation fee applies. This benefit does not apply to camping and camping-related services, or fees for specialized facilities (group picnic shelters) and events. Some facilities and activities on federal recreation lands are managed by private concessionaires whose services would not be covered by this benefit.

To receive benefits, veterans must demonstrate proof of their status by presenting a valid veteran identification card. Gold Star Family members are asked to visit the following website, https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/veterans-and-gold-star-families-free-access.htm, where documentation of Gold Star status can be obtained and printed. This documentation can then be presented to gain free access to USACE-managed recreation areas that charge a fee. This temporary expansion of benefits is in effect until rescinded or amended.

“Today, I directed the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to implement the Interagency Pass Program at USACE-managed recreation areas to include veterans and Gold Star Families. As a component of the Department of Defense, we fully support the decision to expand free access under the Pass in this manner to support our military families so they can enjoy the many benefits of USACE recreation areas,” said The Honorable R. D. James, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works.

The America the Beautiful Military Annual Pass began in 2012 as a way to honor the sacrifice of our nation’s active duty military, Reserve and National Guard members, and their dependents by granting them free entrance to federal recreational lands. For more information on the Military Pass, please visit https://store.usgs.gov/recreational-passes.

USACE is a leading federal provider of outdoor recreation with more than 400 lakes and river projects located in 43 states. To find the USACE recreation site near you, visit www.CorpsLakes.us.

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SOURCE U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

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Being outdoors has so many benefits. So why aren’t Black

Nature is for everyone. And the social, emotional, and physical benefits of being outside are too valuable to keep from people of color.

CLEVELAND — Erika Hood knows a little something about Black joy.

On a bright afternoon in late September, she found it in a pair of roller skates.

A dozen kids sat cross-legged on a basketball court in Southeast Cleveland, waiting for directions. After months of social distancing, the kids were restless, and eager to lace up their skates.

Erika’s sister, Ebony, crouched to help a kid fasten his helmet.

“There are cultural barriers that we deal with within our own community that’s, ‘Oh, that’s not for us. That’s for those other people. We don’t do that,’” said Ebony. “And we’re here to show them that’s not true.”

Black Americans have long faced barriers when it comes to recreating in natural spaces and deep, generational fears that contribute to a gap in access, causing many to miss out on the benefits linked to spending time outdoors.

Ebony Hood shows off a Cuyahoga Valley National Park T-shirt before cycling 12 miles of the Ohio and Erie Towpath Trail, which follows the historic Ohio and Erie Canal in September 2020. (Photo: Family handout)

Growing up in Southeast Cleveland, Erika and Ebony didn’t often see other Black people recreating in natural spaces, even as their mother, Marcia, prioritized spending time outdoors. Growing up, the sisters said they felt connected to nature, but saw other Black Americans struggle to access those same healing, joyful experiences.

So in 2009, the mother-daughter trio founded Syatt — an acronym for “See You At The Top” — with a grant from the Cleveland Foundation’s Neighborhood Connections program, and set out on a mission to not only increase access to natural spaces for Black youth, but to produce and encourage Black joy in places that haven’t always been safe or welcoming of people of color.

Inequality outdoors

According to a 2017 report by The Outdoor Foundation,  just 9% of the 144.4 million Americans who participated in outdoor recreation over the previous year were Black.

For the Hoods, those numbers aren’t surprising.

Black people often find power, confidence and healing in returning to natural spaces they were once harmed by or excluded from, said Marcia. But making that first trip can be difficult — especially for young people.

Report for America: Vulnerable Kansas bird populations are a canary in a coal mine for climate change

“We have to make them feel comfortable through our confidence,” said Marcia, who gave her own daughters the confidence to be present and joyful in natural spaces. “It’s like, ‘Yes, you do have a right to be here.’”

And to prove it, the Hoods lace up right alongside their participants.

“They see my hair all messed up and crazy looking after we kayak. If I got splashed or wet, or if we decide to swim, then you’re going to see Miss Erika wear her hair in an afro,” Erika said. “We’re going to

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How to Replicate the Benefits of ‘Vacation Anticipation’

Illustration for article titled How to Replicate the Benefits of Vacation Anticipation

Photo: NadyaEugene (Shutterstock)

Remember back in March and early April when we were all panic-buying supplies to prepare for spending a few weeks hunkered down in our homes? Our new lockdown lifestyle seemed like something we’d live through for a period of time, and then life—including the summer—would resume, mostly as usual. At this stage, summer vacations weren’t just an annual tradition, or a way to explore a new destination: looking forward to them became a coping strategy for a lot of people.

When it sunk in that most travel this summer (beyond quick, socially-distanced road trips) wasn’t going to happen, we lost that form of escape, both mentally and in terms of the actual trip. In fact, for some people, anticipating vacations is a form of self-care, Taisha Caldwell-Harvey, a psychologist and chief executive of the Black Girl Doctor tells the LA Times. Here’s why “vacation anticipation” can improve our well-being, and how to recreate it without the actual vacation.

Illustration for article titled How to Replicate the Benefits of Vacation Anticipation

What are the benefits of vacation anticipation?

For years, I’ve used travel—both the trip itself and looking forward to it—as a way to deal with my anxiety. When everything else was too much and my thoughts were racing, I could take a break and calm down by looking up oddly specific local museums or historical sites at my upcoming destination, or think about what I was going to eat when I got there.

As it turns out, I’m not alone. According to Tom Gilovich, a professor of psychology at Cornell University, looking forward to a trip gives your mind plenty to do—especially during stressful times. “You’ve never been to the Hawaiian Islands, and you try to predict what it’s going to look like. That’s the kind of soothing thought that puts you to sleep,” he tells the LA Times. And the benefits don’t stop there Gilovich adds: after you’ve taken the trip, you then have the opportunity to do a mental comparison between your expectations of the vacation and your actual experiences, which could be gratifying.

But the mental benefits of vacation anticipation extend beyond those using it to manage anxiety. “The emotional system is really geared toward steering people to engage with good things and to avoid bad things,” Leaf Van Boven, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at the University of Colorado at Boulder tells the LA Times. He points out that this is why looking forward to future events can be more satisfying than thinking back on what has happened in the past.

Illustration for article titled How to Replicate the Benefits of Vacation Anticipation

How to replicate the benefits of ‘vacation anticipation’

We’re not going anywhere anytime soon, but fortunately, there are ways to get similar benefits without booking a flight. Here are a few:

Plan a day trip or a quick nearby weekend getaway

So, you may not be jetting off to your dream destination, but even planning smaller excursions like day trips or nearby weekend getaways can help. “The benefits of experiential consumption

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9 Wonderful Benefits of Traveling

If there was one piece of advice I have for people today to experience more joy in life, it is to travel more. I don’t mean taking vacations or going on pre-planning trips, I mean making the journey out to somewhere you’ve never gone before with an open schedule, to let life show you what opportunities were waiting for you that you couldn’t have even imaged before.

Traveling is wonderful in many ways. It captures us with a sense of wanderlust and has us longing for more destinations to visit, cultures to experience, food to eat, and people to meet. As amazing as traveling is, most of us think we need to wait until our later years to really explore a lot of the world. I want to inspire you to travel more now and I will do that by sharing 9 wonderful benefits of traveling so you can take the leap of faith you’ve been waiting for.

1. You’ll find a new purpose

“To travel is to take a journey into yourself.” – Danny Kaye

Traveling is an amazingly underrated investment in yourself. As you travel you’re exposed to more new people, cultures, and lifestyles than you are living in your homeland all the time. With all the newness in your life, you’re also opened to new insights, ways of seeing the world and living, which often gives people a new purpose for their lives. If you’re feeling stuck on what your purpose is, what you want to do with your life, the career or educational path you want to pursue, go travel…you might just be surprised about what you discover as a new sense of life purpose and direction.

2. You’ll appreciate your home more

“All travel has it’s advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it.” – Samuel Johnson

When we spend time away from home, especially in a place where we don’t have the same luxuries readily available to us…like a village in Fiji that runs without electricity…we become more aware and appreciative for the luxuries we have back at home. I remember a time where I visited my cousin in Argentina after she’d been living there for about a year. I was visiting her around Christmas time and brought her the new Harry Potter book along with some basic goods that you can find almost anywhere in Los Angeles. She was over joyous and filled with gratitude, like she just got the greatest gift in the world. In other parts of the world, like India and Ethiopia, people don’t have as much access to clean drinking water…especially from what’s readily available on tap. Traveling through areas like that really make us appreciate what we do have, and often can spark the movement of something to support people living there experience a greater quality of life.

3. You’ll realize that your home is more than just where

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Vacation Health Benefits

If you don’t take all the vacation time you’re allotted, you’re not alone.

If you work while you’re on vacation, you’re like a lot of other people in the workforce.

If you’re stressed when you return to the office, there are a number of reasons for that.

There seems to be no question that the United States has an unhealthy “vacation culture.”

It ranges from how much time off we’re given, to how much vacation we actually take, to how we act while we are away from our jobs.

Americans simply don’t take enough vacation time, and when we do, we don’t take full advantage of it.

And that’s too bad.

Experts say there are a number of health benefits to enjoying a vacation… for both the employee and the employer.

“It gives you a chance to relax and recharge and clear your head,” said Alison Sullivan, a career trend expert at the website Glassdoor. “Vacations reduce stress that can build up when you are working, working, working.”

“People do better at work if they take time off, rest, refresh and get away from the daily grind,” added Jeffrey Pfeffer, author of the book “Dying for a Paycheck.”

“If they don’t take vacations, employees are less productive, less creative, and think less outside the box,” noted Ken Yeager, PhD, director of the Stress, Trauma and Resilience (STAR) program at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

That stress can produce some serious consequences.

A 1992 study that tracked workers for 20 years concluded that men who didn’t take vacations were 30 percent more likely to have a heart attack. For women, it was a 50 percent greater risk.

“Stress, we know, is bad for our health,” says Pfeffer.

So, with all this evidence, why don’t we leap at the chance to go on vacation?

Our vacation culture

The lack of vacation time is not only part of America’s business culture.

It’s also part of our laws.

The United Kingdom mandates that companies provide at least 28 days of vacation to their employees, according to the official UK government website.

Other countries such as Sweden and Austria require a minimum of 25 days.

Australia insists on 20 days, Mexico mandates 6 days, and China requires 5 days.

The U.S. government does not require companies to provide any vacation days. That’s right. Zero.

A lot of U.S. companies apparently take advantage of this lack of legislation, too.

A 2013 study estimated that almost one in four American workers have no paid vacation time.

Even workers who are given vacation days don’t seem to take them.

A 2016 study by Project: Time Off indicated that U.S. workers took an average of 21 days of vacation in May 1996. That fell to 16 days in March 2016.

In fact, the average American worker takes only about half of their allotted vacation time, according to an article published on Inc.com.

And even when we’re on the beach or in the mountains, we don’t completely unplug.

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7 Personal Benefits of Travel: Why Travel?

Forget milling around in your finest evening wear, Singapore Sling in hand: You’ll be lucky to get peanuts. Flying isn’t quite the party it was in Sinatra’s days, and lots of time, energy, and money are expended to leave home, so why travel? How long do the personal benefits of travel last?

Getting away from home and stepping outside of your usual routine is beneficial for both mind and body. The long-lasting personal benefits of visiting a foreign country far outweigh the costs and time to get there.

The great travel writer Pico Lyer said: “Travel is not really about leaving our homes, but leaving our habits.” Here are seven ways that travel, especially international travel, will enhance your life.

01
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Travel Sharpens the Mind

You’ve done your old routine for so many years that you could run through it on autopilot. Being dropped into a new environment engages a dormant part of your mind and gets those synapses firing again.

Suddenly, you’ll be required to navigate unfamiliar places, read foreign languages, try new things, make quick decisions, and choose your new eating and sleeping schedule.

Unlike at home, all the new sights, sounds, and places will require mental processing and filing. Your brain will welcome the workout! Once you return home, you’ll be sharper than ever for better organizing and sprucing up your daily routine.

02
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A Shift in Perspective

“Nobody comes back from a journey the way they started it.” — Unknown

Being exposed to new cultures and people will greatly shift your paradigm and create a healthier perspective once you return back home. Seeing different social classes creates compassion and really makes you feel more blessed and content. Large portions of the world’s population have to deal with daily threats such as hunger, disease, and landmines.

A hard day at work suddenly doesn’t seem so bad when you see people in developing countries toiling in sun-scorched fields from morning to dark, or begging for a drink of water.

03
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A Chance to Try New Things

“Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

While you may branch out at home from time to time by trying new restaurants or splurging on expenditures, traveling kicks you out of the comfort zone and forces you, for better or worse, to try new things!

Even if you don’t enjoy your first attempt at scuba diving, at least you’ll be able to relate in a new way the next time you see it in a movie or hear someone talking about it.

Becoming a well-rounded individual enhances self-confidence and will help you find new material for conversation in social settings with a wider variety of people.

Who knows, you may accidentally discover your new favorite food or find out that you want to pursue a new career in karaoke!

04
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Meet New People

“A journey is best measured

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The Surprising Benefits of Unlimited Vacation Policies

Christopher Hanks, founder of the Entre­preneurship Center at Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, Georgia, loves leading sessions about unlimited vacation. “It’s a fun seminar to do, because it’s never quiet,” he says. “Some business owners get really upset. Others are evangelistic. It excites so much emotion.” Unlimited vacation policies are still the exception, but the idea is spreading beyond its Silicon Valley roots. These policies can have unintended consequences, though. “People take less time off than before,” Hanks says. That’s not good news. Nielsen research shows employees who vacation are happier with their jobs, more engaged, and less likely to quit–or have a heart attack–than their non­vacationing peers. Those who skip vacations are also likelier to be depressed, and to dent office morale.

Unlimited time off is becoming a requirement for some companies seeking top talent. “We were recruiting from other companies that had it,” says Margaret Wheeler, chief people and culture officer at Stitch Fix, which provides online personal fashion stylists. Stitch Fix switched to unlimited late last year. So far, Wheeler is pleased. “People responded really well to it, and it feels correct for us,” she says. Other small-business leaders agree that offering unlimited vacation time can be a great thing–if you do it right.

Don’t leave people guessing.

The marketing auto­mation company Sales­fusion launched its unlimited vacation policy in 2014. Some of its 72 employees, uncertain about how much vacation is too much, started taking less. So the company created an FAQ document to address issues like how much vacation to take at a time (two weeks max) and how to arrange that time off.

“It really did help to provide folks something in writing they could review,” says CEO Carol O’Kelley. “If you stood up and said, ‘Does anyone have questions?’ you’d hear crickets.”

Measure performance.

Before offering unlimited vacation, you’d better have key indicators that tell you how well each employee is doing, Hanks warns. “If my vision is fuzzy, I can’t really hold you accountable,” he notes. “I’ll say, ‘You’ve been out of the office a lot. I feel like you haven’t been working hard,’ and you’ll say, ‘No, no–I’ve been up till midnight a lot of nights.'”

Call legal.

In some states, including California, these policies are challenging to establish for hourly employees, because vacation days are considered part of their pay. So some com­panies offer unlimited time off for salaried, “exempt” employees, and traditional policies for nonexempt workers. And offering unlimited time off means you need a policy that distinguishes vacation from maternity and medical leave.

The CEO must go too.

“Whether you see everyone around you, above you, and below you taking advantage of it is really what makes or breaks the program,” says Heidi Kim, senior product manager at Zest­Finance, an underwriting tech­ company with about 100 employees. “A policy on paper is meaningless.” Because ZestFinance’s leaders take time off, lower-level employees do too; about four to five weeks per year.

Ban “working vacations.”

If vacationing employees constantly check in

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Vacation | Employee Benefits

Overview

Eligible employees are granted vacation at time of hire and is prorated for the year based on start date (see below). Vacation is then granted at the start of the fiscal year (July 1) for Faculty, Academic Staff and Limited Appointees and at the start of the calendar year (January 1) for University Staff employees.

Once vacation is granted, it may be used before it’s earned for that annual period. Vacation may be used from the first day of employment and like all other paid leave, must be approved by your supervisor.

If vacation is not used within the year it is earned, it may be carried over into the following year. If vacation is not used by the end of the carryover period, it will be lost.

Faculty, Academic Staff and Limited Appointees

Granted 176 hours (22 days) of vacation per fiscal year; prorated if part-time. The fiscal year is July 1 – June 30.

University Staff Employees (does not include crafts workers)

Vacation is granted at the start of the calendar year (January 1) for University Staff.

Accrual is based on years of continuous service and your Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) status. Refer to your appointment letter to determine your FLSA status.

Vacation hours are prorated if part-time.

Vacation Hours Granted Each Year

(on January 1)

Years of Service

FLSA Non-Exempt

FLSA Exempt and
Nonexempt Supervisors

During First 5

104

120

5+ to 10

144

160

l0+ to 15

160

176

15+ to 20

184

200

20+ to 25

200

216

25 & Over

216

216

 Crafts workers

University Staff employees who are crafts workers are granted vacation hours differently. Crafts workers will be provided vacation in accordance with provisions in UW System Administrative Policy 1210 (formerly BN 1): Vacation, Paid Leave Banks, and Vacation Cash Payouts, except as indicated in UW System Administrative Policy 1238 (formerly GEN 21) Crafts Workers.

Leave Banking

Once certain eligibility requirements are met, employees have the opportunity to bank (save) unused vacation for use at a later date. Note: Crafts workers are not eligible to bank unused vacation.

Banked vacation:

  • Accumulates from year to year without limit and does not expire
  • Can be used like any other paid leave (must be approved by your supervisor)
  • May be able to receive a portion of eligible banking amount as a cash payout (University Staff only)

The option to bank vacation hours is offered in July for eligible Faculty, Academic Staff and Limited Appointees. The option to bank vacation and/or receive a vacation cash payout is offered in late fall of each year for eligible University Staff.

Forms & Resources


last updated: 12/9/2016

Every effort has been made to ensure this information is current and correct. Information on this page does not guarantee enrollment, benefits and/or the ability to make changes to your benefits.

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Benefits Of Bus Travel

Everyone likes to travel. Holidays are meant to be fun and satisfying and that is another reason for traveling overseas right now. Could also be again house pining for that favourite city or country, favourite seaside or mountain journey and actively saves for one more trip to the identical spot or even a new vacation spot as an experiment.

Finding best tour operators would be the most interesting solution to see any locations easily because they have skilled guides and all their guides have educated nicely to make your journey infotainment. Have our life experiences, schooling and conditioning discouraged us a lot from using our creativeness that we now view it as a frivolous phrase?

If you want to know extra about Pakistan’s culture and people, then the Swat Museum is a must place for you to go to. So, I went to the Travel Occasion, and I won a visit, got started with the business. Within the city enterprise dress is the norm for locals and there are numerous males in ties and even jackets.

Traveling, whether or not for a long weekend away to a nearby country, or clear across the globe, is invigorating, refreshing and expands a lot in one’s life that it is one thing that extra folks should do. Traveling overseas can vastly change your life for the better as a result of there are various cultures and life to expertise.

Many individuals select bus transport as a result of it’s cheap. You need pocket cash to purchase meals and drinks, to pay cabs or rental vehicles, and, in all probability, to buy some take-residence mementos from the place you visited. There may be a variety of lodges to choose from.…

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