If you’re exhausted from the parade of bad economic news, let’s take a break and talk about some good news from the world of travel. It’s harder to find, but there is some out there, especially if you’ve got dollars in your pocket and you’re used to them being not worth so much.
Hungary, Poland, and South Africa just got cheaper. Yeah I know, it sucks if you live there. But if you’re a traveler, you’ll get more for your money now. A lot more:
The zloty fell 3 percent against the dollar today, taking its weekly decline to more than 16 percent, the steepest since Bloomberg began tracking the data in 1993. The forint extended its weekly loss to a record 14 percent while the rand fell almost 17 percent in its biggest five-day slump since 1975.
Americans can now buy rail passes on Amtrak. If you live in or are going to travel in the northeast or northwest, this is good news indeed.
Some international airlines are starting to cut fuel surcharges. (The U.S. ones are behind, of course, since they made bad hedging bets right after complaining about oil speculation. Oh, the irony!)
National Geographic’s new “Places Rated” survey is out, one in a series that queries industry players (me included) on which places are in trouble and which are holding up well. This one is on historic places. Some destinations have really screwed the pooch (I’m talking to you Pamukkale), but in places where the locals and government have made an effort, things are in good shape. It’s easier in a developed country of course, but there are high-ranking entries from Mexico, the Czech Republic, Argentina, and Estonia.
Sarah Palin is still funny.