A winter vacation in the mountains skiing, having fun in the daylight and warming beside the fireplace in the evening arguably is one of the best ways for a family to spend some time together. Many resorts known for their strong activity during the cold months try to sculpt a profile of a “mummy, daddy and the tribe” friendly type of resort so it’s not an easy task to gain some recognition. This is why the mention of Pamporovo among the top 10 options for a winter family vacation – a selection made by the British newspaper “The Guardian” draws more respect for the Rhodopes located resort. The atmosphere and the combined value of the Pamporovo ski pass, equipment hire, and accommodation play a key role for the Bulgarian winter centre to gain in popularity every year.
And the fact that the cards are the “pay for one, use two” type adds more points of attractiveness to the Rhodopes complex. Except for the main resort, the Pamporovo lift pass includes also the access to the slopes of the nearby Mechi Chal skiing zone in the vicinity of Chepelare. The connections between these two areas, for now, is performed by shuttles – so-called Ski Bus, who is available on 15 minutes interval in the morning and every half an hour in the afternoon.
The more, the merrier… and cheaper
The bigger the clan is, the longer you plan to stay, the cheaper gets the price of the Pamporovo ski pass. A plain comparison explains the situation. Two parents and one kid pay 368 BGN for three days, less than 190 Euro or just above 20 Euro daily expense for a person. For the same number and configuration, 9-day Pamporovo lift pass will cost 938 BGN or 480 Euro, below 18 Euro for a person per day. It gets even better for the 5-member combo of mama, papa and three children – 528 BGN for three days (18 Euro fee for a person per day), 1342 BGN for a 9-day vacation (15 Euro for a person calculated to one day expense). It’s important to know that for all type of Pamporovo ski pass the prices listed are valid for children older than 7 and younger than 12 years. The teenagers are considered the same as adults, at least in terms of the fee for the slopes, while the minors who haven’t turned seven rides for free.
Charters flights in the winter make it easier to reach Pamporovo
The main setback regarding the Rhodopes resort is the lack of a good and close airport connection. Many planes land in Sofia every day but the capital is 230 km away – at least three hours by bus or car. The nearest airport is located in Plovdiv, approximately one hour away. And while it operates on a really small scale, this winter there it will easily accessible by charter flights from several points in the UK, including London-Gatwick, East Midlands, Manchester to name some. Except for affordable Pamporovo ski pass every family will look for comfortable accommodation for a good price. Some of the best offers to stay can be found here – http://www.balkanholidays.co.uk/holiday_destinations/winter_holidays/bulgaria/bulgaria_mountains/pamporovo/pamporovo-ski-packs-and-services.html. For example, a week-long vacation for 4-member tribe starting from the first Saturday of 2018 the cost of the hotel could go below 250 GBP if you book on time. And winter is here, there is no time to wait!
Planning your next winter holiday? If you want to be far from the madding crowd of the Alps and stay on a budget, well, you need to look in a more unconventional place. Bulgaria is known for its affordable ski resorts, but the country can offer a lot more to the adventurous visitor who decides to set foot on their picturesque slopes. There are three main resorts with excellent slopes and nice hotel options. But if you prefer plenty of sun and blue skies while brushing off the pistes, then you should definitely head off to Pamporovo. The resort prides itself on being one of the sunniest in Europe. Combined with gentle slopes and acclaimed ski schools and you have the perfect place for beginners.
Pamporovo is an up-and-coming ski resort set in the majestic Rhodopes Mountains at the foot of Snejanka peak. The small village is well-hidden in the gorgeous pine forest and is relatively tranquil even in the busy season. Thus you won’t need to fight your way through the crowd to get a seat on the lift. Pamporovo ski resort is 4-hour transfer from the dashing Bulgarian capital Sofia or 2 hours from Plovdiv airport. Rest assured that the long travel will be rewarded with impressive views and a whole lot of snowy slopes.
There is a variety of well-groomed pistes, most of which are suitable for beginners and intermediates. Professionals can try off-piste skiing or go straight to the most difficult run in Pamporovo ski area – “The Wall”. All major runs start from Snejanka peak. The longest piste is 4 km and leads straight to the village and the bed base Stoykite. If you are new to skiing or snowboarding, this is the ideal place to find your passion for winter sports. There is an excellent ski school with experienced teachers, who will ensure you learn all the basics while having a great time.
As of last year, the ski area Mechi Chal in Chepelare is also part of Pamporovo ski resort. This means that you can use your Pamporovo lift pass in both areas. There is a total of 14 lifts that serve Pamporovo, with plans for the construction of new ones also in store. A number of shuttle busses connect the village with the base of the slopes as well as with the Mechi Chal ski areas.
Pamporovo is more of a purpose-built resort than a village but it has a good set of hotels and several decent restaurants such as an Italian one and an upmarket steakhouse. Have a bite in one of the local taverns called “mehana” to taste the traditional Rhodope cuisine. Go for “kachamak”, “patatnik” or roasted lamb. Looking for some evening fun? Pamporovo will live up to your expectations. There bar hop, bowling and snow tubing. If you fancy venturing outside of Pamporovo, you can visit surrounding villages such as the ethnographic reserve Shiroka Lyka popular with its traditional Rhodope homes. You can also stop by Smolyan and visit its Planetarium or enjoy the beautiful sights of Plovdiv.
First of all, it is important to point out what exactly the Global Entry is, and namely – it represents a certain immigration program of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Service (BPS), which allows all pre-approved and low-risk international frequent travelers, as wells as exchange visitors to receive clearance, valid for 5 years, upon arrival into the federal republic through automatic kiosks at 42 U.S. airports. Its main aim is giving the travelers the opportunity to avoid the long-formed queues, annoying paperwork and extra hassle, and in that way – to let them pass through customs and head off to their destinations much faster than usual.
Can anyone and everyone get a Global Entry Card?
Unfortunately, the answer is “NO”.
Only the following groups of people are allowed to apply for it:
adults (individuals under 18 must have parental approval in order to get Global Entry Pass);
lawful permanent residents;
South Korean citizens;
Canadian citizens and residents;
Wonder how to get your own Global Entry Card?
Provided that you belong to one of the categories mentioned above, here is what you have to do next:
As a start, complete the online application form and pay the concomitant application fee. Acceptable forms of payment are credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover), money order or simply a certified check. Cash and personal checks are not accepted. As for the price – the privilege of possessing this card will cost you round about $100. But be careful because the following fee is non-refundable!
The whole application process takes not more than 10-15 minutes and you should receive an email confirmation shortly after sending it.
Set a date for an interview. In the framework of 1 to 10 days you are expected to receive a second email that informs you that you are approved. You must then log into your GOES (Global Online Enrollment System) account and select an appointment time at one of the Global Entry Enrollment Centers at your choice.
Note: You have only 30-day grace period to fulfill Step 2!
You will receive your Global Entry Card by mail within approximately two weeks after the interview;
So far, so good, but… Howto use your Global Entry Card now?
Once the particular program member arrives at an airport, he is required to go to one of the well-marked local Entry kiosks, to insert his passport or U.S. permanent resident card inside, to place his fingerprints on the scanner for fingerprint verification afterwards and then to complete a customs declaration. The kiosk itself provides the traveler a transaction receipt and directs him right to baggage claim, respectively, to the exit.
All of us have a family, some have a small other have big ones. Most of us love to spend time with them and one of the things we can do is to travel together and build great memories. There are few things that are better than that and for the most people there is nothing more pleasant to travel together with your family.
So when you plan your vacation down the south somewhere into the States or you go up to the North into Canada. You want to have fewer obstacles to your journey with your love ones. And most often than not there are few things than might make your experience traveling a little bit bitter because of many small things like traffic or flat tire.
Hi, my name is Jane. I love to travel south to the beautiful New York City. Where I live in Canada is so quit and green that sometimes I just want to escape to the big city. I like to travel with my car. There are some difficulties when I do that though. That’s the traffic on the border side. However, I found a quick and easy way to pass that test. A friend of mine suggested me to buy a Nexus Card. I have heard about it but I have never really gave it a thought.
There are time when we lose things. We lose money, keys, wallets and etc. We hate it, we are angry about it but at the end of the day we got to do what we got to do to handle things right. That’s the case with our friend Joe who lost his Nexus Card recently and he shared his experience with us.
“I am a Canadian and I work as an engineer for a building company. Therefore, I have to travel often to New York where is located our headquarter. I often go with my family car together with my family so we can spend time together. We have already used to ride on the Nexus Line and no waiting needed on the crossing border.
Till one day when I lost my wallet with all the document and unfortunately my nexus card. That was shocking news because we had already planned a family trip to US and now all was in vain. I had to request new passport, ids and new nexus pass. I was not familiar how to get nexus card replacement and I was worried that it will take me so much time as it took me when I was initially applying for nexus program but it was really easy process. All I had to do was to go to a website that offers that service for lost nexus card and apply again. The total cost was $50 and the process was very easy and quick. I did not expect that. Probably the most important of my documents was recovered faster than I expected. The company that I trusted for this process is called Global Trusted Traveler and they explained to me that it may take an interview again when I apply for nexus card replacement but it is not necessary every time but sometimes is requested. However, I was lucky this time and I had my nexus cardreplaced with new one week later in a white envelop sent from the government. The card had the same expiration date as the previous one and I think that the number of the card is now different. “
That was Joe experience of replacing his lost nexus card. If you have the same problem you can write us a comment and we will be happy to help you out.
It is easy to stay the same and not change anything but most of the times change is not just good but a must. What do I mean? Stefan is a Canadian citizen and he lives near Niagara Falls. He loves to spend time with his family and they often travel together. They love to visit USA because of its sights and entertainments. He has two children, the small one is 3 years old and the other is 10. Their children are big fans of Disney Land (are you kidding me, who’s not). So they go every month to the States with their family car to visit some of their favorite places. For a long time they did not realize that they spend a lot of time crossing the border. Sometimes that could be an hour, sometimes on holidays it could be 2-3 hours. The time spend waiting is precious for the family traveling experience and is not a necessary.
Till one day a border police suggested them to apply for nexus application for family. They have heart about Nexus program before but did not realize that this traveling program can improve their traveling experience. Moreover, they can save hours of their time and spend it in family activities. They can save over 100 hours of waiting a year and create so much family memories just by having a Nexus pass.
So they bought each member of their family a nexus card and for a small fee they improve so much their traveling/crossing the border experience that they said “We love Nexus program, it’s the best thing that happened to us for a long time.”
Be smart and open minded traveler. Seize those opportunities that can save you time. It can be just a traveling card or something else that can save you so much time and make you remember more family times than border crossing times.
Congratulations! You have made it through the first stage of the NEXUS Canada or U.S. program, now you are off to the second part of the application – the interview.
The interview for the NEXUS pass is important because it will confirm whether or not you will be a likely candidate. As intimidating or scary as an interview may sound, its important to not see it like that. Its important to not put too much pressure on this part of the application – rather you should see it as like when you are at border security and the guards are asking your questions.