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Le Bastille Day

Le Bastille Day

There is never a shortage of fun things to do in Cape Town, whether it’s Summer or Winter. And this weekend is no exception. Experience a little bit of France on July 15-16th at the annual Bastille Day Festival held in Franschoek.

An extravaganza of food and wine the place to be is the Food and Wine Marquee held in the beautiful grounds of the Huguenot Monument. A R280 ticket will buy you a complimentary tasting glass and booklet of 5 tasting coupons to be used on the day. A quick word of advice-the tickets sell out fast and no tickets will be sold on the day once the marquee is full. To avoid disappointment book early.

If you are not a fan of wine or simply want to give it a skip there is Franschhoek’s main road bustling with various eateries and curio shops for you to explore. This year the Porcupine Ridge Barrel-Rolling competition is back as well as the dedicated children’s corner and the Farmer’s Market is sure to be extra vibey with a host of musicians and carnival artistes ready to entertain.

So, dust off your berets and experience one of Cape Town’s hallmark festivals. For more information including accommodation, wineries and activities click here

B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.

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Tips on Traveling through London

  • If you flying into Heathrow the fastest way into London is the Heathrow Express which runs every 30 minutes to Paddington Station in the heart of London then it is a short cab ride to your hotel. It takes just 15 minutes cost around £27 (undiscounted) , a black cab £60, bus or Tube train £12 but will take considerably longer. Buy your ticket online well in advance and save up to 65% off the standard ticket price. Off peak journeys, weekends and Bank holidays are even cheaper. There is no need for a more expensive First Class ticket the train is comfortable enough and the journey is really short. heathrowexpress.com
  • If you flying from Gatwick Airport just South of London there is the convenient Gatwick Express which leaves from Victoria station every 30 minutes. If you buy the ticket online you save 10% for the first ticket and for two people 35%. So a little preparation pays.  The Gatwick Express is the fastest, cheapest way to get to the airport. A Black Cab will cost you around £110, Uber £55 and Gatwick Express £17.  The train is popular and can get crowded so arrive early.    gatwickexpress.com
  • If you going be traveling extensively in London then consider a one day Travel Card at £12.30 but buy it only after 9am to get the off peak rate, anytime price £17.50. You can use the Travel Card on the bus as well. You can also consider a 7 day Travel card starting at £32.10 for Zone 1-2 (pretty much where all the interesting attraction are located). Kids travel at a discount.  For short journeys, it is often cheaper for three or four people traveling together to take a Black Cab rather than a Tube ride.
  • London city has many one way roads so for a short journey you may find it is quicker to walk than take a cab or even a tube, use Google maps and select the on foot option. London is full of surprises so walking is a great option.
  • Remember always take a Business Card from the hotel with their address just in case you should get lost.
  • London is a city designed for public transport probably better than any other city in the world but it does help to plan your journey. Download the London Tube map Free on Google Play or from the Apple App store.

B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.

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Our Top Ten Must do’s in Cape Town

Our Top Ten Must do’s in Cape Town

1.      Go up Table Mountain on the Cableway – Table Mountain sits majestically in the heart of the city and gives a panoramic view of The City, Table bay, Clifton and Camps Bay. Bring something warm to wear, the weather can change fast at the top and it is always cooler at the top of the mountain which is just over a 1000m above sea level.

2.      Cape Point – Cape Point is located in the Cape Point Reserve (about 80km from the city)where you will find several species of antelope, Zebra and baboons.  Absolutely worth the walk to the Point with its amazing views of False Bay and the Atlantic. There is a funicular up the hill (The Flying Dutchman) if you do not feel like the short hike.

3.      Robben Island – The prison made famous by Mandela’s incarceration, Trips by boats leave from the Waterfront at the Clock Tower.

4.      Seal Island – Boats leave from Hout Bay Harbour and travel around the Sentinel to the Island which is covered in Cape fur seals.

5.      Penguins at Boulders Beach – In summer enjoy the opportunity to swim safely at Boulders just past Simonstown with a colony Jackass penguins.

6.      Kirstenbosch – The Botanical Gardens at Kirstenbosch is the best in the world and absolutely worth a visit. In summer book for one of the many open-air concerts on the lawn, it will be unforgettable.

7.      The Castle of Good Hope – located in the centre of the city, one of the oldest buildings in South Africa built by the Dutch settlers.

8.      Visit Groot Constantia wine farm – built in 1685 and the oldest wine producing estate in South Africa.

9.      The Waterfront – South Africa’s top tourist destination with all its restaurants and shops located in a working harbour and also home to Cape Town’s eye a revolving pod letting you see the city and beyond.

10.   Lions Head by night – take a walk up to the top of Lion’s head with a torch on a full moon but expect crowds of people, the reward is a unique 360-degree breathtaking view, so worth it.

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Kite Surfing in Cape Town

Kite Surfing in Cape Town

Cape Town offers the traveling kite surfers everything that they could want for in a destination, and is one of the world’s best locations for kite surfing. It is also the home of the prestigious Red Bull “King of the Air” competition that attracts the world’s best kite boarders to these shores.

Strong prevailing South Easterly winds in summer with good size waves for wave-riding and flat-water areas to practice tricks and turns, are all close to the city.

The Kite surfing season in Cape Town starts as early as September and continues through to April with the peak months being November, December, January and February. During this peak period you are almost guaranteed to get good southeasterly winds at least 3-4 times a week. The swell size in summer is smaller than the winter season, where swells of 6m and larger can be recorded when the winter storms hit.

In summer the swell size averages around 2.5 m and can be a lot of fun on a twin tip or directional board.

Table Bay, with Table Mountain overlooking it, is the prime location and it stretches all the way from Milnerton Beach, through Sunset Beach, Dolphin Beach, Kite Beach, Tableview, Big Bay, Derdesteen, Haakgat, Melkbos and up to Yserfontein Beach.

Sunset Beach, Tableview and Blouberg suburbs are the hub of Kite surfing in Cape Town with great side shore southeasterly winds reaching speeds of up to 40 knots. Affordable accommodation in these areas is readily available and can be accessed on the internet via Airbnb etc.

In the coastal town of Langebaan, which is approximately an hour’s drive up the West Coast, the massive lagoon and main beach are the ideal spots to learn to kite board, or to practice flat-water turns and tricks.

Langebaan is situated in the heart of the West Coast National Park, a reserve area for fauna and flora and it is not uncommon to see an ostrich or a wild antelope on the road trip.

There are many kite boarding schools in the Sunset Beach / Tableview area and they cater for novice beginners right through to advanced riders. In most cases the lesson includes the rental of the necessary equipment.

The area also has many Kite surfing / Windsurfing stores that carry the latest equipment and they are always good for information regarding local knowledge of tides, beaches, safety and repair of your damaged equipment.

Cape Town is truly a kite surfers paradise and on the “off days” there is so much to see and do, there is nothing like kiting in great surf and wind conditions, with Table Mountain as your back drop.

You will not regret booking your trip to Cape Town today. See you soon !

 B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.

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10 Top Wi-Fi Hotspots in Cape Town

A selection of Cape Town restaurants and cafés offering free wireless Internet

Everyone searches for a spot offering Wi-fi (also known as Wifi or wireless Internet) at some point or another, whether it’s so that they can quickly check emails, get their daily social media fix or just get some serious work in within a comfy environment. With so many different Wi-fi hotspots in Cape Town’s city centre, all of which differ slightly in their ambience and offering (they range from trendy and bustling to quiet and business-like), it can be quite tricky to find the setting that suits your needs.  Not to mention, the requirements for using a spot’s free Web offering can be difficult to navigate – is it necessary to order a big meal? Is it fine to just grab a coffee? So, to answer such questions and to bring you the lowdown on the Mother City’s wireless Internet scene, we’ve scoured Cape Town to find a variety of top cafés, restaurants and bars offering great food, a relaxed setting and, of course, FREE Wi-fi.

Read the full article here

 B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.

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8 Ways To Secure Your Device When Traveling Abroad

One of the worst things imaginable when traveling abroad is losing your device, whether to theft or loss. All your valuable information, travel images and more could be gone in an instant and knowing how to protect your belongings in advance is the first step to preventing that.

Safeguard your device

At times you might be wearing an item without pockets, not carrying a travel bag or even going to the beach. Before your trip, ensure that you’ve purchased an anti-theft bag or a waterproof bag for the beach so that you can ensure your device is safe even if you’re unable to store it elsewhere.

Protect your personal data

If you haven’t already set up password protection on your device, ensure that you do it before you travel. Make sure you do what you can to make it complex in order to prevent making it easy for anyone to access your device should it get lost. Additional steps could include location finder and enabling remote wiping so that if all is lost, at least none of your personal data is tampered with.

Be safe in public settings

Never assume everything is fine when it comes to accessing any personal information, such as your bank accounts or company servers, etc. Do your utmost to avoid using any passwords or login id’s on public devices and instead try to only access it using your own personal devices.

Lock up and go 

Being well-aware of your surroundings and the areas you are traveling to assists you in preparing. If you are traveling to an area with a high risk of pick-pocketing or theft, instead of carrying your device with you – leave it locked up in the safe at the hotel you’re staying at. If there are no lockers in your room, ask the staff if there is perhaps safes available on the premises.

Check your location and privacy settings

At home, knowing your location could be useful for the apps that you need it for to navigate or better your experience at home but when you’re abroad, make sure that your location is turned off for unnecessary apps or social media. This is information cyber criminals could use against you at any point.

Back it up

Before you leave for your trip, backup your device where it can be stored at home. In the situation where your device was lost or stolen, you would be able to restore the backup and have access to your data again.

Update your software

Although it might come off as unnecessary, updating your software could be crucial in ensuring your device is safe, especially in a cybersecurity sense. Software updates are created with the intention of fixing any bugs and preventing malicious devices that could be attempting to access your data. Think of it like a vaccine for your phone or tablet.

Get a local SIM

Apart from protecting your device from theft you need to ensure that you protect your data, getting a local SIM when travelling to the USA will ensure you keep data costs low and won’t need to worry about not being able to make and receive local calls. View the b4i.travel data packages here: https://b4i.travel/usa/

There are a lot of things you can do to protect your device but remember that if your personal information lands in the wrong hands, it could be worse than just simply a lost phone. Take the time and steps to prevent that before and during your travels.

Be safe, have fun!

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Skiing in the States: The need-to-knows

For any seasoned – or aspiring – skier, an expedition to the United States of America is an outright must. With nearly 500 resorts to choose from, one is indeed spoiled for choice, but might also be left a little baffled. Check out the list below to find out where to begin.

For your convenience, we’ve also thrown in a few handy mobile apps.

Save the date

December to April (and May and June, in some states) are traditionally the months to go skiing in the United States. Since December and January fall in the Festive season, and the best snow for skiing falls in February, this period tends to be considerably more expensive, and bookings will need to be made way in advance.

March and April still have good snow, and resorts tend to be quieter. If you’re on a budget, you’ll want to book for this time of year.

Where to go?

The Rocky Mountains (or Rockies) is considered America’s prime mountain range for alpine-related activities. Aspen, Colorado and Salt Lake City, Utah, as well as Lake Tahoe, Sierra Nevada are some of the most well-known destinations for the months of December to February.

Jackson Hole, Wyoming is considered by many to be America’s prime skiing destination, with the best months for visiting pinpointed as May to June.

These are, of course, but a few of the destinations available to skiers; keep an eye on nearby resorts in the region for good deals. Since snow-related conditions are prone to drastic and unexpected change, it’s a good idea to have email details and, in case of bad internet connection, contact numbers for a few ski resorts in the area you’ll be travelling to. Before embarking on your trip, be sure to register for an American SIM with b4i.travel to make communication easier and a lot cheaper.

Insurance, insurance and insurance

Look: skiing is, and always has been, a dangerous pursuit. That’s why it’s known as an extreme sport.

Should, perish the thought, rescue helicopters and emergency surgery be required, things will get complicated. Throw caution to the wind and have a look here:

https://www.comparethemarket.com/travel-insurance/winter-sports/ski/

Also, you’ll need to pay a visit to your doctor prior to embarking on your snowy quest. He/she will be able to determine whether you are capable of undertaking the excursion at hand.

Budget

Skiing is traditionally known as a pastime of the rich and famous, and with good reason.

Luckily, iPhone app Liftopia has taken initiative, with daily price updates on lift tickets and ski passes for more than 250 resorts across North America (including Canada). What makes it extra effective is that you can also book your tickets on their website. Check it out: www.liftopia.com

Check the weather

[Almost] nothing can spoil your skiing holiday as much as a blizzards or unexpected avalanches. However, we live in modern times, which means there is an app for that. Check out www.onthesnow.com for Android and iPhone. You’ll get coverage on the latest weather and powder (deep snow that has not been skied on; in other words, fresh snow) reports for your region, complete with various mountain webcams. It also features other useful information, such as open and closed lifts and mountain trails.

Organise your gear

If you aren’t taking your own, make sure you are kitted out before heading up the slopes. Most resorts should have gear for hire, but the risk of them not having something in your size available is a possibility. Check out these rental services and secure your outfit:

www.skiset.us
www.rentskis.com

Get a GoPro

Impress everyone back home with awesome first-hand footage of you rocketing down the peaks. Check out GoPro’s website to find a device that suits your prerequisites and means:
www.gopro.com

Now that you’re all clued up, what are you waiting for? Buy the flight ticket, and strap on the ski goggles!

B4i.travel skiing checklist:

  • Contact details for various resorts
  • A printout of your booking
  • American SIM arranged in advance
  • Insurance
  • Ski goggles/glasses
  • Sunglasses
  • Gloves/mittens
  • Ski jacket
  • Ski hat (beanie)
  • Ski boots
  • Helmet
  • Waterproof socks and pants
  • GoPro/Camera
  • Power pack charger
  • Waterproof phone cover
  • Extra batteries for camera
  • Walkie talkies
  • A basic first aid kit
  • Sunscreen (trust us: sun reflects off the snow)
  • Hydration pack
  • Hairdryer

b4i.Travel offers three different types of American SIM cards that can be purchased in advance. These SIM cards can be purchased here: https://b4i.travel/usa-sim.

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Helicopter Flip Over the Mother City

Buckle up for a next-level sightseeing tour of the Mother City’s breathtaking Atlantic coast

They say that first impressions are everything, and beyond a doubt, the best way to get acquainted with the Mother City is to meet her via helicopter. In South Africa, chopper flights are reportedly the cheapest in the world, and more importantly, a heli-flip is really the only way to truly appreciate Cape Town’s magnificent beauty.

Sure, there’s plenty of opportunity to take in bits and pieces of her exquisite scenery with ground touring. But much in the same way that looking at individual pixels to get an idea of a grand image is rather unsatisfying, conquering the Mother City on land just doesn’t compare to drinking in the whole of her brilliance from the heavens above.

And while there are a handful of operators that take passengers up, up and away, we recommend booking with long-time locally reputed company NAC.

The established operator is backed by South Africa’s first commercial aviation company and boasts a 100% accident- and incident-free record. More importantly though, it offers two entry level flights that treat riders to spectacular views of glorious Cape Town, including vistas that feature Table Mountain, the V&A Waterfront, Lion’s Head and so much more.

Read the full article here

B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.

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The beach bum’s checklist for a holiday in the USA

Planning a beach holiday to the States? With nearly 20 000 kilometres of coastline, there’s certainly a lot to choose from. So, where do you begin when planning the perfect North-American beach vacation? Read on to find out.

Choose a destination according to your prerequisites

Identify what it is that you want out of this vacation. A quiet seaside resort-experience? Water sports? Fun in the sun?

If it’s big crowds and parties you’re after Miami is the place to be, with a nightlife to match. California is a mecca for surfers with its world-class waves, while Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Massachusetts are home to charming, quiet beach towns. Book your flights here: https://b4i.travel/book-flights-in-usd/.

Speaking of which: the seasons

It’s pretty safe to assume that you’ll want to plan your visit during the warmer months. Summer in North America (on paper) begins on the 20th of June, and ends on the 21st of September.

Also remember that the water on America’s West Coast (California) is, as a rule of thumb, much colder than the water on the East Coast (Texas, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina). It is worth mentioning that California’s southern coast is warmer around summer time (June to August).

Accommodation

As per usual, this depends entirely on your budget. If you can’t afford hotels (very expensive during peak season) or don’t feel like staying in a backpackers (very crowded and rowdy during festive season), check out accommodation here: https://b4i.travel/accommodation/

Some handy tips

Now that most of the practicalities have been covered, consider these hints to make the most of your beach vacation in the States.

Especially for surfing and swimming, monitoring the tide is key. Luckily, there is an app for iPhone and Android to give you coverage of both the current and upcoming tide, as well as the sunset: https://tidesnear.me/

For a lowdown on the waves, MS Surf Forecast (for iPhone and Android) is a must: http://magicseaweed.com/App/

Safety first, everyone

Getting into a tight spot on the beach is no-one’s idea of a good time. Avoid going into the water when no lifeguards, or at least other people, are present, don’t swim out too deep; you know the basics.

It’s also a good idea to get a few emergency contact numbers, and register for an American mobile SIM so that you aren’t stuck in an emergency.

Now that you’ve got the basics covered, grab your beach kit, make some reservations and buy the plane ticket. Oh, and don’t forget the sunscreen!

B4i.travel beach bum checklist:

  • Sunscreen, sunscreen and sunscreen
  • Lip balm
  • After-sun lotion
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Flip flops
  • Sunglasses
  • Sarong
  • Beach towel
  • Beach mat
  • Beach umbrella
  • Sun hat
  • Cooler bag
  • Beach bag
  • Camera
  • Power pack charger
  • Waterproof cover for mobile phone
  • American SIM arranged in advance
  • Emergency contact details
  • Water bottle/ hydration pack
  • Insect repellent
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Free and Cheap Things to do With Kids in Cape Town

15 Fun family-friendly activities for mahala or less than R50

Raising children can be expensive. There are nappies, teeny garments, sticky sweets, mini furniture, toys and school fees to think about, so when it comes to entertaining them, most moms and pops likely want to keep costs as low as possible. Of course, this doesn’t mean simply sitting at home – no one wants little tykes climbing up curtains or hanging from lampshades – but rather finding fun family-friendly activities that don’t burn a hole in the pocket.

And fortunately, such things do actually exist in Cape Town. From free options like storytelling sessions at bookshops to very affordable to-dos like crocodile viewing, rose picking and grape juice tasting at wine farms, there are plenty ways to keep tiny tots busy while pinching the pennies. If you’re wondering where to find such alternatives, simply take a look below – we’ve carefully compiled an overview of things to do with kids for free or for less than R50 to help you get through the child-rearing phase with your bank balance still more or less intact.

Read the full article here

B4i.travel simplifies your communication needs when travelling and takes the risk out of high international roaming costs. We offer a range of pre-loaded, pre-activated and pre-registered world travel SIM cards so you’ll be connected when you arrive in the country you are visiting. Tourists, students and businessmen have been talking like a local in South Africa, USA, Europe with B4I.travel since 2010. It’s time to ‘Explore your world’.