1. ELIGIBILITY: Gadling’s Food Photo Contest (the “Contest”) is open only to individuals who are legal residents of the fifty (50) United States (including the District of Columbia), 18 years of age or older. Employees of Weblog, Inc. LLC, AOL Inc., their advertising or promotion agencies, those involved in the production, development, implementation or handling of Contest, any agents acting for, or on behalf of the above entities, their respective parent companies, officers, directors, subsidiaries, affiliates, licensees, service providers, prize suppliers any other person or entity associated with Contest (collectively “Contest Entities”) and/or the immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings and children) and household members (whether related or not) of each such employee, are not eligible. All U.S., federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. Void in Puerto Rico and where prohibited by law.

The Contest is Sponsored by Weblogs, Inc. LLC, 770 Broadway, New York, NY 10003 (“Sponsor”).

3. AGREEMENT TO OFFICIAL RULES: Participation in the Contest constitutes entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to and acceptance of these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor, which are final and binding. Winning a prize is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements set forth herein.

4. ENTRY PERIOD: The Contest begins at 9:00 am ET on July 5, 2010 and ends at 5:00 pm ET on July 12, 2010 (the “Entry Period”).

5. ENTRY: During the Entry Period, go to and leave a comment with a link to your online personal photo of food from your travels. Submission will result in one (1) entry. Limit one (1) entry per person. The use of any agencies or automated software to submit entries will void all entries submitted by that person.

Sponsor shall have the right to disqualify any entries that they deem to be obscene, vulgar, sexually explicit, lewd, derogatory, inappropriate, or otherwise not in good taste, as determined by the Sponsor in its discretion. By submitting an Entry you hereby grant the Sponsor, its affiliates, subsidiaries, assigns, licensees, and legal representatives the irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide right to use, reproduce, edit, market, store, distribute, have distributed, publicly and privately display, communicate, publicly and privately perform, transmit, have transmitted, create derivative works based upon, and promote the Entry (as such may be edited and modified by the Sponsor in its discretion) for editorial, commercial, promotional and all other purposes including posting on any websites. Submissions must be 100% your original work, and must not contain any third party material or content (including but not limited to any company logos or trademarks, likenesses, or any other copyrighted or trademarked content) for which you have not been granted specific written permission for this use by the copyright or trademark rights holder. You retain ownership of all right, title, and interest in and to your Submission. All elements of your Submission must be your original work and must be owned by you, and you must have the right to grant any and all necessary rights and licenses, including without limitation, all necessary copyright and other related rights to all of the materials, free and clear of all claims and encumbrances without violating the rights of any person or entity, including any right to privacy or publicity. Your Submission should not include the likeness of a third party, unless permission of said third party has been given, or contain elements not owned by you (including but not limited to trademarks or logos). By submitting your Submission, you agree to release and hold harmless the Contest Entities and their officers, directors, employees, and agents from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of your Submission or your participation in any phase of this Contest.

Disclaimer of Similarities:
Due to the nature of this Contest, there is a possibility that similar photographs may be submitted by multiple individuals. Any similarity between Submissions shall in no way entitle you to any consideration or compensation from the Sponsor or from any third party, including in the event a Submission similar or identical to yours is selected as a winner in this Contest. By submitting your Submission, you specifically acknowledge this possibility and agree to the terms stated in these Official Rules.

6. JUDGING: A panel of judges (the “Judges”) will select fifteen (15) Finalists based equally on the following criteria (the “Judging Criteria”): creativity, beauty, composition, and theme. In the event of a tie, the submissions involved in the tie will be reviewed by an additional judge according to the Judging Criteria. Decisions of judges in are final. In the event an insufficient number of qualified eligible entries are received during the Entry Period, Sponsor reserves the right to select less than fifteen (15) Finalists.

7. VOTING: From 9:00 am ET on July 19, 2010 until 5:00 pm ET on July 23, 2010, the Finalists (as selected by the judges) will be posted at for public voting. Users will be allowed to vote for their three (3) favorite photos. The three (3) submissions receiving the most votes will be declared the potential Grand, First and Second Prize Winners. In the event of a tie, the judges will select the winner. The use of any agencies or automated software to submit votes will void all votes submitted by that person.

8. NOTIFICATION OF WINNERS: Potential winners will be contacted via email and will be asked to provide their full name, age and mailing address within a specified time period. If a potential winner does not respond within the timeframe stated in the notification email, the Sponsor may select an alternate potential winner in his/her place.

9. REQUIREMENTS OF THE POTENTIAL WINNERS: Except where prohibited, the potential winners (or, if winner is deemed a minor in his/her state of residence, his/her parent or legal guardian) may be required to complete and return an affidavit of eligibility and liability/publicity release (the “Affidavit/Release”) within seven (7) days of being notified. If a potential winner fails to sign and return the Affidavit/Release within the required time period, the prize will be forfeited and may be awarded to an alternate winner. Acceptance of a prize constitutes consent to use winner’s name and likeness for editorial, advertising and publicity purposes without additional compensation, except where prohibited by law.

One (1) Grand Prize Winner will receive a Nikon L110 digital camera, a Tamrac Aero 70 photo backpack and a Tamrac Zipshot tripod. Approximate Retail Value (ARV) of Grand Prize is $405. One (1) First Prize Winner will receive a Tamrac Aero 70 photo backpack and a Tamrac Zipshot tripod. ARV of First Prize is $145. One (1) Second Prize Winner will receive a Tamrac Zipshot tripod. ARV of Second Prize is $60. No cash or other substitution may be made, except by the Sponsor, who reserves the right to substitute a prize with another prize of equal or greater value if the prize is not available for any reason as determined by the Sponsor in its sole discretion. The winners are responsible for any taxes and fees associated with receipt or use of a prize.

In the event that the operation, security, or administration of the Contest is impaired in any way for any reason, including, but not limited to fraud, virus, or other technical problem, the Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, either: (a) suspend the Contest to address the impairment and then resume the Contest in a manner that best conforms to the spirit of these Official Rules; or (b) award the prizes from among the eligible entries received up to the time of the impairment. The Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any individual it finds to be tampering with the entry process or the operation of the Contest or to be acting in violation of these Official Rules or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner. Any attempt by any person to undermine the legitimate operation of the Contest may be a violation of criminal and civil law, and, should such an attempt be made, the Sponsor reserves the right to seek damages from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. The Sponsor’s failure to enforce any term of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision. In case of a dispute as to the owner of an entry, entry will be deemed to have been submitted by the authorized account holder of the screen name from which the entry is made. The authorized account holder is defined as the natural person who is assigned to an e-mail address by an Internet access provider, online service provider, or other organization responsible for assigning e-mail addresses for the domain associated with the submitted e-mail address.

12. RELEASE AND LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: By participating in the Contest, entrants agree to release and hold harmless Contest Entities from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of participation in the Contest or receipt or use of any prize, including, but not limited to: (a) unauthorized human intervention in the Contest; (b) technical errors related to computers, servers, providers, or telephone or network lines; (c) printing errors; (d) lost, late, postage-due, misdirected, or undeliverable mail; (e) errors in the administration of the Contest or the processing of entries; or (f) injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from entrant’s participation in the Contest or receipt of any prize. Entrant further agrees that in any cause of action, the Sponsor’s liability will be limited to the cost of entering and participating in the Contest, and in no event shall the Sponsor be liable for attorney’s fees. Entrant waives the right to claim any damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct, or indirect damages.

Except where prohibited, entrant agrees that any and all disputes, claims and causes of action arising out of, or connected with, the Contest or any prize awarded shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by the appropriate court located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, entrant’s rights and obligations, or the rights and obligations of the Sponsor in connection with the Contest, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules (whether of the Commonwealth of Virginia or any other jurisdiction), which would cause the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than the Commonwealth of Virginia.

14. CONTEST RESULTS: To request the names of the winners, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to Gadling Food Photo Contest Winners, AOL, 22070 Broderick Dr – 12E:D01, Dulles, VA 20166. Requests must be received by July 31, 2010.

Eyjafjallajokull fallout: What did Iceland’s volcano’s explosion cost travelers?

Beginning April 14, Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano erupted, melting glaciers and spewing a huge ash cloud, which disrupted air travel throughout the EU and impacted business as far away as Kenya. As a result, air travelers were stranded for days, many in airports and most with little hope for comfort. After about a week, air travel began to return to normal, though many travelers flailed about looking for who would help reimburse their costs during their forced stays.

To help understand the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, Gadling has teamed with Online Schools to develop an easy-to-understand infographic, which explains everything from how to pronounce the name of that silly volcano to an analysis of how much hotels tried to gouge stranded passengers. Keep reading for some amazing numbers — and for the only solution for clearing the next ash cloud from the skies.


[Source: Online Schools for]

What is “Travelers Night In”?

Every Thursday from 3:30-5:00 EST, Twitter users who love travel come together for Travelers Night In (TNI) to chat about the latest and greatest of the travel world. Each week, TNI tackles a different theme, and for those 90 minutes, the hosts of TNI discuss the theme with participants. Past themes have included Winter Destinations, Adventure Travel, and Mexico/Caribbean travel. This week’s theme is City Travel, and next week’s theme is Travel for Foodies.

How does it work?

The process is simple: the hosts of TNI ask one question every 10 minutes for the 90 minutes of the event. Participants respond with answers, questions, tips, etc. Each Tweet should include #TNI, so it’s easy for followers to track. If you forget to include #TNI in your Tweet, it’s likely that comment will be lost.

The process is very democratic. It is NOT 90 minutes of hosts lecturing to participants. Quite the opposite! In reality, the hosts throw out questions and keep the conversation moving, but participants do the bulk of the knowledge sharing.

How can I participate?
How you participate is ultimately up to you, of course, but you can easily join in by loading your Twitter page (or your Tweetdeck, or your Hootsuite, or…) and searching for #TNI.Warning: hundreds of people show up online for this event, and Twitter and many third-party Twtitter apps can’t load replies quickly enough. Power users suggest using Tweetgrid — we’ve created a custom Tweetgrid for you here — which allows you to enter search keywords of interest for you. In this case, we suggest using, at a minimum, search keywords #TNI and probably your Twitter handle. You can add other phrases that interest you, if you like.

I’m not on Twitter.
It’s ok! You can still use Tweetgrid (or Twitter’s built-in search functions) to follow the conversation, but you won’t be able to contribute to the discussion. Maybe this is a good time for you to join Twitter? It’s easy (and free) to get an account, and without a Twitter account, you can’t participate. Sign up, and join the conversation.

(If you join Twitter, be sure to follow Gadling!)

I can’t participate. Will you please stop Tweeting so much?
Gadling is honored to have hosted TNI several times, and it’s a lot of fun. It’s great to interact with a community that loves travel, and it’s great to learn travel tips from such a seasoned community of travelers. We learn something every week, and that’s our favorite thing about TNI.

Occasionally, we get comments over Twitter about how we’re tweeting too heavily during TNI. To this, we have to say:

1.) The point of Twitter is to engage, so if you’re unhappy that we’re engaging with readers and followers, we’re sorry, but maybe you should go back to using RSS. However, we think we’re using Twitter in a smart, creative way, so we ask that you forgive (or ignore) us for these 90 minutes of Twitterrhea.

2.) If you understand that Twitter is about engagement, but you still hate that we “flood” your timeline, please understand: TNI is only 90 minutes per week. The rest of the week, we try hard to be conservative, and interesting, and not flood timelines with silly or irrelevant non-travel Tweets. We don’t love flooded timelines, either — but we understand and forgive when there are good reasons for said flooding.

Where can I learn more?

  • If you’d like to learn more about the founders of TNI, head over to ZipSetGo and see what they have to say about TNI.
  • For further reading, check out Adventurous Kate’s blog, where she does a TNI recap most weeks.
  • Join us this Thursday starting at 3:30EST and see what other travel-lovers have to say about City Travel. See you there!

Gadling on Foursquare

Ethiopia. Barbados. France. Chicago. New York. Seattle. These are just some of the places you’ll find our travel experts at this exact moment.

If you’d like to keep a closer eye on some of our travels and hear about our insider travel tips, become Gadling’s friend on Foursquare. Once you do you’ll find out what we think is the best bar in Munster, Indiana; which place in New York has the best donuts; or where we found the best burger in South Florida, among other things.

For those of you who “don’t get” Foursquare, don’t worry – it’s just a simple tool that allows you to “check in” at places you visit — bars, restaurants, hotels, shops — via your mobile device. You can share information about those places and get tips from others who’ve checked in, too. In addition, Foursquare offers its users a fun game: you can earn “badges” for your check-ins and even become the Mayor of an establishment, if you’re the most frequent visitor there.

Still confused? See how Foursquare describes itself and read The Frugal Travelers’ excellent description of the application, and how it has the potential to change the way we travel, the way we think about travel, and the way we collect information about our travels.

And don’t forget to become our friend!

Share your travel tips with Gadling and get published, paid

Have you ever looked at a travel blog and thought to yourself, “Boy, I could do that!”? Well, now’s your chance to “do that”!

Introducing Gadling’s brand new, 100% reader-generated feature, “100 words or less.” In “100 words or less,” YOU — the expert traveler — get to share your expert travel tips with Gadling and all our readers. Know a sure-fire way to score a cheap hotel room? Confident you know a trick to get an airline upgrade? Share it with us!

To submit your own tips, sign up for a free account at Seed, filter the assignment list by the category “travel” and look for assignment requests with the words “100 words or less.” (And yes: if your tip is published, you will be paid!)

Anticipating questions, here’s a quick FAQs:Q1. What kinds of tips are you looking for?

A1. Right now, we’re looking for tips covering the broad topics of Hotels, Road Trips, Cruises, Dining Out While Traveling, Souvenirs, Airplanes/Airlines, Traveling With Kids, Packing, and International Travel. We may launch more tips soon, but for now, this is the extent of our tips offering. HINT: Use your imagination (and your brains) and leave some good tips. We don’t really need any more “leave for the airport early” tips. No offense, but, um, we’re not gonna publish those. Have a look at our hub and see what kinds of tips we’ve published so far.

Q2. What if you don’t use my tip?

A2. If we don’t use your tip, don’t feel bad. We may have rejected it because someone else already submitted a similar tip. (After all, we can’t keep publishing the same tips.) Alternatively, perhaps the tip wasn’t the right fit for Gadling. Don’t be distraught. Submit another tip!

Q3. I have some great tips on my blog. Can I submit those?

A3. Sorry, but we’re only looking for tips that have not been published elsewhere. If you can come up with some tips for your blog, we bet you can come up with at least one more for Gadling.

Q4. What’s the pay like?

A4. For these tips — all of which are under 100 words in length — we’ll pay $10 per tip, paid via PayPal. You may submit as many as you like, and we’ll pay for all we publish.

Q5. I don’t have any travel tips, but I would like to contribute in other ways to Gadling. Is this possible?

A5. C’mon, everyone has travel tips! However, if you don’t feel inspired to submit some tips, there are other assignments in the queue relating to travel. (In fact, there are lots of different assignments in the Seed queue for all kinds of topics!) Sign up for an account, and we bet you find something to which you can contribute. In fact, we just added some more assignments to the queue, so go wild!

Q6. I don’t live in the US, but I have some great tips. Can I still participate?

A6. At this time, the Seed platform is US-only (but that’s changing soon). So, for now, we can only accept tips from US-based writers. We’ll update you when we know more.

Got more questions? Leave them in the comments, and we’ll answer them there. Good luck!