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Flash (Pointe Noire) by Jain

Hello all! Welcome back! As the world is in a virtual lock down and as the weather warms up, I thought it will be fitting to talk about traveling. Traveling can have many aspects with it, but I will be only talking about the different types of transportation and tips while in transit.

Within Cyprus, there is primarily three different transportation options. The first one is walking. Sometimes, I occasionally walk around my apartment like for an hour or so and see some local sites. There are some notable sites around my area. Some of these sites include restaurants, markets, and other related things. However, there is one site that I really enjoyed seeing. It’s not far away from my place, but Metochi Kykkou is a relaxing picturesque garden where it has stunning architecture and exotic animals including peacocks, emu, turkeys, and others. (There are no tigers, sorry to my Tiger King fans). Below are some pictures from it.

Another option is by using the Nicosia bus system (OSEL). If you ever plan on going to UNIC, there are two direct bus routes that goes directly from UNIC to old town. These routes are the 123 and the 259. For a typical bus fare, it cost around €1.50 one way. However, for students, there is a student discount of €0.75. These buses are pretty much what you expect. The only exception is that they don’t have a string to pull on, but instead a button to press on to get out. For some locals, they will yell στάση or stasi.

Besides the local bus system, there is also the Intercity buses. These buses, as the name implies, goes between major Cypriots cities. Depending on how far you go, it can go from €5-10 one way. In some instances, I have uses these buses to go to Ayia Napa, Larnaca, and Limassol. Typically, they are always almost packed, especially during holidays.

If you’re planning to travel to Northern Cyprus, there isn’t a strong reliable transportation network. From what I heard from locals and other Global Semesters students there is a thing called a ‘Dolmush’. A ‘Dolmush’ is a shared taxi service. This service is a combination of both a taxi service and a bus service. In order to get into one, you will have to “hail” one down. If you’re lucky, you might find a ‘Dolmush’ going to your intended location. However, for most ‘Dolmush’, you have to be aware of its signage of where it’s going before hailing it down.

The last transportation option within Cyprus is Bolt. Bolt is very similar to Uber and Lyft back in the States. You can go from one place to another in a reasonable amount of time and money. In some instances, similar to the States, you can have detailed conversation with one of the drivers. For example, a couple were going back home and was just having a normal conversation, but out of the blue, our Bolt driver started to play pop music and was dancing. Yes, dancing. The only main difference is that most Bolt drivers drive Mercedes Benz. I don’t know why they do, but from what I observed Mercedes Benz are fairly common within Europe.

Here is a picture of us inside a Bolt. Left to right: your favorite blogger, Sal, and Mckenzie. Thanks for the picture Sal

Outside of Cyprus, there is only one way of getting out and obviously that’s by plane. Within the European Union and its other related countries, you can get cheap airplane tickets. The primary reason stems from cheap international budget airlines. Some of these airlines include easyJet, Ryanair, Wizzair, and others. Intially, this past week, I was supposed to enjoy my spring break trip in Switzerland. Yet, like everyone else in the world, it was cancelled. The one benefit with intra European flights or any departing European flights is that in an event of a flight cancellation, you’re entitled to a full refund. This is good to know if you’re strapped for cash and if your flight is cancelled. Anyways, this round trip airport ticket was less $100. You can never find these prices within the the US!

While in transit, there will be some type of passport control. As American citizen, I’m privilege with the immense power of my passport. With my passport, I can travel to around 185 counties visa free or visa on arrival. For some non-American, they don’t have the same power. As a result, when I had a layover in London, I was able to freely move around London proper without any passport restrictions!

During my layover in London, I was using the London Underground

Lastly, if you’re planning to travel to a foreign place make sure you have enough money! I know this might be a shocker for most of you, but outside the US, they don’t use the dollar! Also, for some US credit cardholder, some standard credit card companies are not valid in other countries. For example, I have a Discover card and while I was in Cyprus, there were numerous times where my card was denied.

Anyways, you have reached the end of this entry, come back next week for my TANGible adventures!

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