Everything Else


Tuning out of the world for two weeks as you take to the tarmac in your beloved stallion is as good as it gets. It’s why we call it the Great American Roadtrip and the reason why one in four people make this an annual pilgrimage of theirs. Adventure, peace and quietness, self-discovery, and nostalgia; these are just a few reasons why we love it so.

However, that doesn’t mean every road trip is destined to be great. It takes more than just stepping into the driver’s seat of a car, pulling out a map and screeching off toward the horizon with a smile etched deep into your face. The greatest road trips require a dollop of planning.

Read on for a list of things you might want to consider when planning a road trip.

1. Pick Your Pals Wisely

Trust us; there is nothing worse than being locked into a road trip with someone you’re not compatible with. Having someone who wants to see totally different things, won’t drink cheap coffee, not willing to spend at all, a loud singer, backseat driver or anything else that might fall within this bell curve will certainly drive you bonkers.

2. Budget & Budget Well

The secret to budgeting is to be realistic about what you have to spend and how you want to spend it. Having a budget of $10 a day and an expectation to stay in five-star hotels isn’t going to go down well. So, do a bit of planning, look at where you can save and what you are willing to splurge on so that you will have an idea how much you can spend on a day-to-day basis.

3. Good Cars Only

There is something totally charming and film-like about driving down the west coast in a beat-up rust-bucket. However, do this and you are rolling the dice in the worst way ever. And it’s not just rust-buckets that qualify either; it’s cars that fall short on fuel economy, passenger comfort, trunk space, lack of cruise control and off-road ability. These are all the marks of non-road-trip-worthy cars.

4. Ride With Sense, Okay

The greatest road trips are the ones you walk away from. It’s as simple as that. To give you some advice on what constitutes as riding with sense, it’s things like; don’t have your feet on the dash because airbags deploy at 220mph, don’t drive when you are tired because fatigue is one of the most common causes of road accidents, don’t hover in a truck’s blind spot because, well, visit to find out why and don’t drink and or anything like that. That sort of common sense stuff.

5. Get Off The Highway

Road trips are not meant to be a straight line between A and B, or you getting from A to B in the fastest time possible. They are meant to be an adventure into the great outdoors and that means leaving the highway and taking the good old scenic route. Chances are, the back streets will become the highlight of your trip.

With the warmer weather finally making its appearance, motorcycle lovers across the country are finally dusting off their leathers and their waterproofs and are making a point of getting their bikes ready for the road. The drier weather makes those bucket list rides possible and it also means that those less experienced in motorcycling start taking their first journeys.

Motorcyclists are often tutted at on the road by those in cars, and this is usually due to the fact that no matter how vigilant road users are, motorcyclists are quick, stealthy and seem to come out of nowhere. Whatever you do as a motorcycle driver, even if you are an old-hat and own a selection of preowned motorcycles in the garage, your safety will be questioned. There is nothing wrong with a little extra safety measures, but there are some myths about motorcyclists that just need to disappear from the road entirely. So, what are the top five myths that motorcyclists everywhere would like to dispel the most?

Myth 1: Leathers Are All For Show

There is not one motorcyclist out there that enjoys the heat that comes with being on a long journey and wearing leathers in the heat. Leathers are purely a safety feature of the motorcyclist as it’s resistant to abrasion and road rash in comparison to other materials and it’s a great insulator against the wind and rain. Also, the accessories of leather gloves and pads look cool – there’s no denying that.

Myth 2: Helmets Cover Your Eyes

Thanks to the safety regulations out there, full-face helmets don’t cover the eyes and you CAN see. They’re also an excellent bug-squishing tool and catch the elements instead of your skin. It means the rider experience is also free of distraction, making for a safer ride.

Myth 3: You’re Obvious To Drivers

So much nope in that sentence. Motorcyclists should never operate under the delusion that a car will see you coming up from behind. If riders could wear neon colours on the road, they will so that they can be seen and accidents could be prevented.

Myth 4: Beginners Need Big Bikes

It’s a bad idea to get straight on a giant bike for a rider, even if they do look awesome on the road. Bigger bikes weigh over 600 pounds, which means the handling is far more difficult than anything they ever felt before. Beginners should always go for a smaller bike until they can feel confident and comfortable on the open road.

Myth 5: Streets Are Safer Than Motorways

Nope. Sometimes, the hazards on a regular neighbourhood street can be far greater than the open road. It’s difficult to drive on an open motorway for a prolonged length of time, but more crashes happen in urban areas than open ones.

Understanding riders on the road is so important if you’re going to be out in a car. If you’re a rider who is ready to don their own leathers, learn what’s safe and what’s not before you start your engines.

Thanks to the folks from Wearnes, we had the privilege of taking the all-new Renault SCÉNIC out for a weekend spin and we had such an enjoyable adventure that our time with it felt so short!

Renault Scenic Privilege 2018 Test Drive//

Bearing the spirit of exploration amidst a flair for novelty, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC bravely redefines modern journeys and seizes every opportunity to impress. Standing out with its athletic and charismatic exterior styling, while epitomising unrivalled fuel efficiency that champions all in its class, Renault’s latest creation has been engineered to go more than 1300km in just one tank!

Renault Scenic Privilege 2018 Test Drive//

Available in two variants, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC and the All-New Renault SCÉNIC Privilège, each showcases unique design-centric differentiation and trim levels.

Renault Scenic Privilege 2018 Test Drive//

Embodying an athletic architecture with a strikingly tall stance, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC evokes a commanding road presence. A major design shift was marked through the incorporation of unprecedented proportions with wider tracks and a longer wheelbase, on top of a higher driving position and an elevated ground clearance of 182mm. The All-New Renault SCÉNIC also sits on sizable 20-inch rims as a standard fitment in worldwide markets.

Renault Scenic Privilege 2018 Test Drive//

Distinctive visual impressions are also established through the All-New Renault SCÉNIC’s sleek dual-tone livery, which showcases a black contrast roof that extends down the side-wing mirrors for a sportier presence. Broad shoulders and a fluid silhouette are set to turn heads and create an impactful impression at first sight.

Distinctive Lighting Signature

First showcased in Singapore on the striking Renault KADJAR, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC also sports prominent headlights framed by sculpted C-shaped signature LED daytime-running lights, a feature uniquely anchored to Renault’s brand identity, to provide a 3D lighting effect for an intense gaze.

This is combined with permanently-lit 3D-effect rear LED lights that are defined by slender red beams, to further imprint the brand as an architect of cutting-edge design.

Robust Glass Cabin

Take in the full view of adventures and experience a reduction in blind spots, through the extended horizontal visibility achieved from the integration of Triptych windscreen pillars. To add on, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC Privilège’s full glazed panoramic glass moonroof enables all occupants to bask in generous lighting and indulge in astounding all-around sights throughout the expedition.

Unprecedented 20” Rims

Inspired by the R-SPACE concept car, the fitment of unrivalled sporty 20” rims as a standard has to be one of the most groundbreaking features of the All-New Renault SCÉNIC. The specific profile actively contributes to the model’s balanced proportions and delivers enhanced road handling. This positions the car amongst the very best in grip and braking performance, all without detracting from ride comfort. 

Capacitive Multimedia Touchscreen

Having been the first to offer steering wheel-mounted fingertip remote controls, Renault continues to innovate and invites you to step into the world of tablets, with its largest-in-class 8.7” capacitive coloured touchscreen multimedia and navigation system in the Privilège edition. Featuring a revolutionary portrait touchscreen tablet, users benefit from intuitive smartphone technologies, such as click-and-drag movements, in addition to two-finger pinch and zoom abilities for simplified usage.

Renault MULTI-SENSE System

Customise your preferred display interface, cabin ambience lighting and driving modes through the Renault MULTI-SENSE system in the All-New Renault SCÉNIC Privilège. With it, the driver is able to immerse in an augmented driving experience through engaging one of the five driving modes, all of which are designed to cater to one’s favourite driving style.

The All-New Renault SCÉNIC stands out as a segment game-changer with its modular cabin that is uncompromisingly practical yet desirable, satisfying the needs of every active lifestyle.

Featuring first-in-class One-Touch Folding rear seat control, achieve greater ease in folding the rear seats with one touch to create a colossal luggage area and enjoy the flexibility of extending loading space by up to 1.69m in length.

This is the only vehicle in its segment to offer this function which can be activated from two different avenues for optimum convenience. At the touch of a button on the centre console’s 8.7” capacitive touchscreen, or from the controls within the luggage compartment, the second row seats fold flat instantly to provide configurable space that accommodates all adventure necessities.

The All-New Renault SCÉNIC is also the first vehicle in its class to feature a versatile sliding centre armrest designed with an extensive 13-litre storage compartment. Simply press the handle in front of the armrest to shift the position of this smart sliding centre console to achieve your ideal space configuration.

The All-New Renault SCÉNIC’s spacious cabin also features top-in-class stowage space. 13 ingenious storage solutions include four underfloor compartments and other smart storage spaces, created to meet all practical needs.

Four USB ports and two 12-volt sockets provide handy charging points for electronic devices and gadgetry within the cabin, enabling greater convenience on longer journeys.

Remarkable Performance & Safety

As an engine expert and a pioneer of downsized turbocharging in Formula 1, Renault is a leading advocate for smaller-capacity engines that seamlessly blend driving pleasure with efficiency.

This 1.5L turbocharged Euro 6 dCi engine has a clear roadmap – to deliver both punchy performance and economy of use to drivers. It features steel pistons, which optimises motor efficacy by reducing friction, and is paired with an advanced Efficient Dual Clutch (EDC) 7-speed gearbox. This EDC gearbox allows for seamless and amazingly quick gearshifts. In addition, it is calibrated to minimise fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by instantaneously executing suitable gear upshifts for any given speed – all to boast segment-leading fuel efficiency of 4.0L/100km, while delivering an impressive class-leading torque of 260Nm.

The outstanding torque delivers brisk and effective pick-up, while the high rev-range of the engine easily climbs up to 4,000rpm to provide similar levels of performance to that of larger engines.

Fitted with Stop & Start System and Energy Smart Management System, the All-New Renault SCÉNIC’s powerful dCi engine includes a host of technologies (downsizing, friction reduction and latest-generation injection systems) that elevate it to exemplary levels of performance.

A Comprehensive Range of Safety Features

The All-New Renault SCÉNIC guarantees protected journeys with its comprehensive suite of active and passive safety features.

Handsfree Auto-Park Assist

Handsfree Auto-Park Assist in the All-New Renault SCÉNIC Privilège steps in when activated to help the driver identify a parking spot by measuring the available space with its sensors, before taking full control of the steering during parking manoeuvres. This innovative feature manages three different parking modes: parallel, perpendicular and diagonal.

The central display screen shows all of the information relevant to the manoeuvres (graphic representation of the manoeuvre, reversing camera image and sensors) to ensure that the driver remains informed of the surroundings. At all times, the driver maintains control of the braking and acceleration during the manoeuvres.

Blind Spot Monitoring System

Available as a standard feature in the All-New Renault SCÉNIC Privilège, the Blind Spot Monitoring System alerts the driver by way of a visual signal on the side mirrors, should another vehicle be in the driver’s blind spot, ensuring safer overtaking.

Our Personal Opinions & Thoughts

The All-New Renault SCÉNIC is truly a car for the bold and adventurous. Offering a pleasant and comfortable driving experience that is coupled with a sophisticated design, it commands a road presence that is unlike its rivals. Running on a diesel-powered engine, you can be assured of a punchy driving experience that gives you extra mileage and cost savings!


If you have to travel a lot, you’ll know that it can become a little bit of a nightmare every now and then. Sometimes the logistics of travelling is enough to annoy you! But a lot of people have to do it for reasons such as work, family etc. If this is you, and if you find yourself getting stressed from time to time, we’ve got some excellent ways that you can make your next trip a little bit easier. It doesn’t matter where you’re going in the world, all you need to do is follow some suggestions that we’ve got below.

Bring As Much As You Can
This is the first step in making travelling a little bit easier for you. So many people struggle with it because they leave so many things behind that could save time and money. For example, did you know that you can transport your vehicle from your hometown to the part of the country you’re travelling to for next to nothing? It’ll save you having to drive a long journey because you can just hop on a plane and it’ll save you a lot of time when you actually get there. You’ll have the luxury and comfort of your own time, and also a vehicle that you can ride around in to get from location to location whilst on your trip. As for your other belongings, try and make it as comfortable and relaxing by bringing the simpler things in life, such as a book or tablet to keep yourself entertained. Money is another thing you need to be thinking about. If you’re going abroad and the currency is different, make sure you’re working out how much money you need exactly. Some countries are either more expensive or cheaper to live in, so you might need to vary how much money you’re bringing.

Make It Cheaper
If you want to make your travel a little cheaper, you’re going to have to put in some additional effort. For example, package holidays can sometimes be overpriced, and people tend to find that it’s cheaper to actually go through the different companies directly. So, you could go through Virgin for example to book a flight, and then find the hotel that you’d like to stay at and book directly through them.

Pre-Travel Checklist
Always have a pre-travel checklist. The reason why so many trips are hard is that people don’t bring the right things with them, so when they get to their destination; they’re always left panicking and searching at the local shops for things they might have missed. So, what you need to do is make sure you’re writing down everything. From your passport to your phone charger, make sure you have it all before you leave!

If you’re going on a trip anytime soon, we hope we’ve made it a little easier by showing you a few simple ideas to do so.

They’re words you never want to hear but, every year, thousands of parents hear it from their children: “I want to ride a motorcycle”.

The idea of your child on a motorcycle probably fills you with dread. There is something about motorcycles that just seems far more threatening, far more worrying, than the idea of your child driving a standard four-wheel car. However, don’t say “no” to their request just yet— there are a few surprising benefits you might want to consider…

Motorcycles are better for the environment than standard cars
Concerned about the impact of another car on the road? Then let your child ride a motorcycle — when they have qualified, of course! — and be comforted by the fact that such motorcycles are far less polluting than their four-wheeled counterparts.

It’s tough for motorcycle riders to get distracted
Motorcycles require almost constant intervention from their rider. If you are concerned that your child may get distracted or be tempted to text while driving a car, then this worry can be eased if they ride a motorcycle instead.

Remember that you’re helping an industry
If you allow your child to ride a motorcycle, then they will be helping an industry that could really do with a change of luck. The infographic below helps to demonstrate the problems the motorcycle industry is facing, and also explains how appealing to younger generations is a key part of the reparative strategy— read on for more information on this…

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I am a big fan of Lonely Planet! In fact, before I make any trip to a new destination, I will always make it a point to check out Lonely Planet so that I can get some essential travel information and travel ideas prior my visit. When I need some travel inspiration for my solo travels, Lonely Planet is the first place that I will always go to.

Are you a fellow Solo Traveller? If you are, then you got to read The Solo Travel Handbook!

Written by Lonely Planet’s solo travel pros, the book is packed with pearls of wisdom, inspiration and real-life tales from the road – and covers everything from preparation, such as booking, budgeting and packing, to practical advice for meeting people, staying safe and healthy, working remotely and staying connected abroad.

Perfect for once-in-a-lifetime adventures to weekend getaways, this definitive guide gives seasoned and beginner travellers alike the confidence and know-how to embark on a solo trip, helping them to overcome any fears or concerns they might have while preparing them for the journey ahead.

The Solo Travel Handbook also features 10 of the best places around the world for food (Vietnam), nightlife, a solo stopover (Singapore), culture, self-reflection (Ubud, Bali) and lots more.

Other chapters in The Solo Travel Handbook include:

• Why go solo?
• 10 lessons you learn while travelling solo
• The solo travel quiz
• How to arrive at any new destination like a boss
• 10 travel hacks every solo traveller should know
• 10 non-awkward ways to meet people on the road
• 11 ways to overcome loneliness
• Top 20 ways to stay safe on the road

Apart from having a wide collection of travel guidebooks that caters to youth and adults alike, Lonely Planet has resources for kids too! In fact, Lonely Planet Kids has published more than fifty books and more recently, they have three exciting new additions to the Lonely Planet Kids First Words book series!

Simple, striking and beautifully illustrated, these three new books – First Words: Italian, First Words: Japanese and First Words: Mandarin – are the perfect introduction to new languages for the whole family.

Each First Words book contains: 

  • 100 travel-relevant words, from the airport to ice cream and tomato to umbrella.
  • One word per double page, with a simple pronunciation guide accompanying a bold, colourful illustration to give the word context – and to help make remembering the new vocabulary easy and fun.
  • (What I personally like best about the Lonely Planet Kids First Words book series)- Access to a free audio pronunciation guide. Either scan the QR code on the book’s back cover or visit Lonely Planet Kids’ First Words website ( to discover a list of every word in the book. Click on each word to hear it spoken clearly by an Italian-, Japanese- or Mandarin-speaking child.

Suitable for kids ages 5-8, Lonely Planet Kids First Words book series is certainly a book that will help children learn simple words!

Green tea is one of the healthiest beverages in both the ancient and the modern world. Indeed, many Asian countries have been using this herbal drink for its various health benefits and medicinal properties for thousands of years. Green tea’s superiority over other kinds of teas appears to stem from its processing: it doesn’t undergo fermentation, which allows it to retain most if not all of the antioxidants and polyphenols that it contains.

Here are just a few of the benefits that you can derive from drinking green tea every day.

1. Healthier Skin and Hair
There are many ways that your skin and hair can benefit from green tea. For one, the polyphenols in green tea can help neutralise free radicals that cause sagging skin, wrinkles, and age spots. Green tea also contains catechins, a type of antioxidant, that possess antibacterial properties, which in turn can help fight acne-causing bacteria. Its high tannin content, which acts as a natural astringent, also makes green tea an ideal pore minimiser as it cleanses the skin of impurities. Meanwhile, the same catechins that help green tea fight acne also help prevent hair loss and stop the formation of dandruff. The vitamin content of green tea, particularly C and E, also helps protect the hair from external stressors like dust and smoke, leading to stronger and shinier locks.

2. Healthier Heart and Circulation
Green tea has high levels of flavonoids and antioxidants, both of which help in improving and
maintaining the health of blood vessels, and slowing down the process by which the body breaks down LDL or “good” cholesterol. Drinking green tea is also associated with low cholesterol levels and lower chances of developing arterial blockages. Tea drinkers also have a lower chance of having a heart attack (about 43 percent), while those who have already suffered from one heart attack may lower their risk of suffering from the second one by 44 percent.

3. Helps with Brain Function
Apart from its caffeine content that helps stimulate the brain, green tea also has L-theanine, a type of amino acid that can penetrate the blood-brain barrier and helps reduce feelings of anxiety. These two compounds also increase alertness and focus, without the “jitters” that often comes with drinking coffee. Studies have also shown the green tea has the capability to protect brain cells and restore damaged ones. Researchers have also delved into the potential of green tea to slow down the deterioration of the brain function of patients with Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease.

4. Helps Fight Infections and Inflammation
The catechins in green tea have antibacterial and antiviral properties that help prevent, among others, urinary tract infections, tooth decay and bad breath, and the spread of influenza. Some researchers have even found that drinking green tea together with prescription antibiotics can enhance the medications’effectiveness. On the other hand, the polyphenols in green tea can also help combat inflammations and minor aches and pains, such as those caused by arthritis. In fact, the Iowa Women’s Health Study has revealed that women who consumed three or more cups of green tea per day have a 60 percent lower chance of
developing rheumatoid arthritis.

5. Reduces Risks of Certain Cancers
While research about green tea’s cancer-prevention capabilities is still relatively new, they have shown promising results. Most studies point to the polyphenol content of green tea, which have been found to deliver positive effects — from reducing the risk of developing cancer cells in the first place to killing off and preventing the progression of cancer cells — for high-risk individuals and patients with breast cancer, colorectal cancer, skin cancer, and prostate cancer. However, further studies still need to be conducted to verify the repeatability of the outcomes.

6. Reduces Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
It is fair to say that type 2 diabetes has already reached epidemic proportions, with close to 500 million people afflicted with the condition worldwide. While there are many products in the markets such as protein bars for diabetics that are being developed to cater to those who are afflicted with diabetes, prevention is always better than cure. Several studies have shown that green tea can improve the human body’s insulin sensitivity and therefore reduce blood glucose levels. Those who drank the beverage regularly (at least two to three cups a day) also showed 40 to 42 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Drinking green tea also relaxes both the mind and body — all the more reason to pour yourself a cup of two and enjoy its multitude of health benefits.

When you think of safe driving, you likely think of what you should and should not do out on the road. How to react, how to read other drivers, how to ensure you’re not making any reckless moves; that sort of awareness on the road is important, but safety starts long before you put the keys in the ignition. Here, we’re going to look at how you start safe so that you’re more likely to be safe as you keep going as well.


Make It A Factor In Your Purchase

If you’re truly concerned about safety, then it should be a factor in buying a car, not just how you drive it. There are different elements of the car that could make it a safer drive. For one, the safety rating will often tell you how it fares in the event of a crash. Safety features like lane departure warning and blind spot detection are important factors worth considering too. The reliability of the car matters as well. The less likely a car is to malfunction, the less likely those malfunctions are to cause an accident down the line. Make safety more of a focus when you’re choosing a car.

Get More Hands-On

As mentioned, the better condition the car is in, the fewer malfunctions or faults, the less likely you are to get into an accident. So, it only makes sense to keep up with the maintenance and repairs of our auto as much as possible. This doesn’t just mean taking the car to the mechanic as the schedule dictates. Spend some time maintaining the car yourself, not just with tools from an auto body supply store, but checking things like the brakes, tires, and fluid levels. Beyond improving the condition of the car, you’re a lot more likely to spot the early warning signs of a more serious problem by spending more time with your car.

Make Sure You’re Fit To Drive

Being completely aware of the road conditions is one of the most important driving safety practices there is, but all too often, people drive when they really shouldn’t. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is the most dangerous of them all and you can prevent that from happening by assigning a designated driver, keeping your phone charged so you can get an Uber, or leave your car keys with someone else. Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous, so avoid setting out on the road when you’re overtired. Leaving in a hurry can lead to more aggressive driving, too, so try to give yourself more time to relax and plan to leave ten to fifteen minutes earlier than you think you need, especially in the mornings.

Safety should always be the focus of the driver, before, during, and after their time on the road. Make sure you’re buying the right car, that it’s ready for the road, and that you are, too. Just as many accidents are caused by poor preparation as are caused by reckless behaviour on the road.


America’s Musical Journey, the new 3D documentary for IMAX® and giant screen theatres, has held its world premieres on Thursday, February 15, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum and Friday, February 16, at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

The movie has opened globally on Friday, February 16, in select IMAX® and giant screen theatres with a rollout expansion planned throughout the year through the Fall of 2018 and beyond. This is the second film that MacGillivray Freeman Films has produced in association with Brand USA and Expedia as the presenting partners. America’s Musical Journey marks Air Canada‘s first time as a presenting sponsor. The new film celebrates the unique diversity of cultures and creative innovations that characterize America, as told through the story of its music.

Narrated by Academy Award® winner Morgan Freeman, the film follows Grammy Award®-nominated singer and songwriter Aloe Blacc as he traces the roots of America’s music and follows the footsteps of Louis Armstrong through the colourful locales and cultures where America’s music was born. Visiting iconic music cities including New Orleans, Louisiana; Chicago, Illinois; New York City, New York; Nashville, and Memphis, Tennessee; Miami, Florida, and more, America’s Musical Journey explores the collision of cultures that gave birth to American art forms such as jazz, the blues, country, rock and roll, hip-hop, and more. As audiences join Blacc on this joyful, tune-filled tour, they’ll experience uniquely American adventures like paddle-wheel boating up the Mississippi Delta, flash mob dancing in Chicago, and skydive with Elvis impersonators over Memphis in scenes shot exclusively for the giant screen.

Academy Award®-nominated director Greg MacGillivray threads all these images together to create an immersive experience of American culture and creativity with a soundtrack that showcases the national passion for creative innovation at its purest. “America’s music has its roots in the diverse cultures that came together from different parts of the world, culminating in a unique blend of sound, culture, and innovation unlike anywhere else in the world,” said MacGillivray. “This creativity and trailblazing spirit are what makes American music such a treasured experience around the world. I hope people are inspired to explore their own creativity after seeing the film.”

“Music is an essential part of the human experience, and I look forward to helping audiences discover the unique cultural influences that gave rise to jazz, the blues, folk, and other American musical genres,” says Aloe Blacc. “I love the freedom of expression in this country, which is a source of creativity and innovation unlike anywhere else.”

“We are excited to share our second film with the world, which celebrates the rich history and colourful tapestry of American culture through music,” said Christopher L. Thompson, president and CEO of Brand USA, the destination marketing organisation for the United States. “As a universal language that transcends borders, music is one of America’s most unique and important assets. Bringing to life the sights and sounds of our vibrant urban centres, America’s Musical Journey uses music as an instrument to inspire and welcome new audiences to experience travel to the USA in an engaging and dynamic new way.”

In addition to Aloe Blacc, audiences will meet other iconic artists, musicians, and innovators who are shaping America’s culture today, including Jon Batiste, bandleader and musical director of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Latin music stars Gloria and Emilio Estefan, New Orleans music hero Dr. John, Chicago jazz pianist Ramsey Lewis, teenage banjo-playing phenomenon Willow Osborne, Memphis jookin dance star Lil Buck, the Detroit Youth Choir, Chicago footwork maestros Pause Eddie and Donnetta “Lil Bit” Jackson, the Bandaloop vertical dancers, the Fisk University Jubilee Singers, the Beale Street Flippers, skydiving Elvis impersonators, and many more.

“Music has the power to bring people together, especially here in America where diversity and creative freedom are such an important part of the culture,” says Shaun MacGillivray, producer of America’s Musical Journey and president of MacGillivray Freeman Films. “We’re using the immersive, visual giant screen experience to tell the story of America’s musical and cultural heritage in a new and powerful way.”

This is the second collaboration for these companies, following the highly successful National Parks Adventure, voted Best Film of the Year by the Giant Screen Cinema Association and the highest grossing documentary film of 2016.

“As a longtime partner of Brand USA, we are honoured to lend support and raise awareness as a global sponsor and exclusive online travel activation partner of this film,” said Wendy Olson Killion, global senior director of Expedia Media Solutions. “We believe music has the ability to inspire travellers from all over the world to explore new places and cultures.” 

The film will run from February 17 to 25 daily at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Lockheed Martin IMAX® Theater in Washington, DC and at the Airbus IMAX® Theater at the Steven F. Udvar Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia. The film will continue to run indefinitely at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History’s Warner Bros. Theater. There will be festivities on behalf of the film held both domestically and in international markets such as Paris, France; Mexico City, Mexico; Tokyo, Japan; and Beijing, China to mark the opening of the film around the world. For a running list of all theatres showing America’s Musical Journey (in the United States and internationally), please click here.

To discover more about America’s rich musical culture and the diversity of experiences the USA has to offer, please visit Brand USA’s consumer website and follow Visit The USA on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

Financial institutions like banks and credit institutions have a huge role to play in economic development. Proper financial management is important for both individuals and corporate entities and these institutions help with this critical function. There was a lot of chaos and disorganization before such institutions were invested as individuals and businesses didn’t have a secure place to store their cash and other valuables. This meant that they had to keep their excess cash with them and this was not safe at all. Credible and regulated lenders also didn’t exist at that time and as such, individuals and business couldn’t access loans for their personal and business needs. Registered and regulated financial institutions have, therefore, improved the financial sector and this piece highlights some of the roles such institutions play in the economy.

1.      Loan Facilities

People and businesses sometimes require a little financial aid to be able to navigate the challenges in their lives or to take up investment opportunities. Banks and credit facilities offer such aid and this has made life easier for the individuals and businesses. People have taken up loans to buy houses or motor vehicles while businesses have acquired the same loans to buy office equipment and to fund expansion objectives. Loans from credible institutions are usually regulated and this prevents exploitation. The rates are usually fixed and those in need of such loans know what they are getting themselves into even before they sign on the dotted line. To find out more about what you need to when searching for a credible institution for your cash advance needs, check out this loan blog.

2.      A Safe Deposit For Cash

If you have more cash than you need at any given time, the best thing would be to deposit some of it in a safe place and this is where financial institution come in. You can deposit as much as you need for safekeeping and access it when the need arises. Other than making sure that your cash is safe, cash deposits boost your loan limit and as such, you can borrow as much as you need to meet your financial obligations.

3.      They Offer Investment Advice To Its Members.

We’ve all been told that investment is the way to go if we want to boost our cash reserves and to secure our financial future. Most have, therefore, taken different investment ventures but the results have not always been impressive. Without proper planning and evaluation, individuals and businesses have put their resources in the wrong ventures and this has resulted in massive failures. Financial institutions usually have investment segments as part of their operations and both individuals and business entities can seek their opinion on the best investment options in a particular region. They may even go ahead and offer investment financing for your venture if you select them as your financial partner.

4.      Cash Remittance

Individuals and businesses entities don’t have to use cash whenever they need to make payments for the goods and services they have received thanks to financial institutions. As mentioned earlier, carrying around a lot of cash is not safe and you could become a target of robbers if you decide to hold a lot of cash on your person or in your office. To make sure that people can still make their payments, financial institutions have come up with cash remittance methods such as checks, money orders, and direct money transfer. These methods are not only safe but they are accurate and traceable and this ensures business integrity.

5.      They Spur Economic Development

By offering loans and investment advice to individuals, financial institutions help spur economic development. The businesses that will be set up by the funds from the financial institutions and investment advice from the same institutions will employ workers to perform different duties within the organisation and pay taxes to the government. Employment and taxes are key to economic development and by making these critical aspects possible, financial institutions play a huge role in developing the economy.


Businesses and individuals depend on financial institutions like banks and credit facilities for financing and investment advice and this has gone a long way to improve the economy.