Barter Best Bet For Simple Living

In the 1800s, the barter, pledge and sharing networks formed the backbone of the economy of many small communities in North America. These networks often were based on family connections, but also found strong support in community development. Today, particularly in the USA, such cooperatives are viewed, at best, as socialistic, and at worst, communistic. It is unfortunate that we allow the label to define the concept, and, in turn, allow great ideas to be discarded because we chose to pigeonhole them.

Barter networks have regained some of their former popularity in restricted circles, and cooperatives, in general, have found niche appeal. Their implementation, though, could have been employed effectively to mitigate the impact of the 2008 economic downturn. Sharing networks have become the domain of eco-freaks and urban environmentalists, who focus on community-owned bicycles and other transportation assets. Unfortunately, our evolved innate distrust of those that we do not know, and our fear of losing material assets have led us to reject the concept of sharing and pledging as too Utopian to work.

Barter systems, today, most commonly rely upon the business members to provide most of the goods and services that are traded or banked to keep the network functioning. While many programs have city, country or world-wide membership, an effective local barter network can be developed with ease. Think of the old country doctor, as an example. Often, the fee for his work was paid in livestock or food. Travelling repair handymen could count on room and board in exchange for a day’s work. Neither of these would be considered retailers or manufacturing businesses.

I belonged, for several years, to a local barter network with international reach, through its affiliate program. I could trade off services that I provided for restaurant meals, business services, auto repairs and even travel. While it proved to be quite valuable for me, it had limitations. Only those with a marketable asset could participate. Yet, I often bought goods privately, and found that there was no capacity for one-on-one, personal trading and banking. There was no structural reason for this; merely a philosophical one.

While working as a rural business development specialist, I structured a community-driven barter system that enabled every member of that community to participate. When I concluded my work with the community, however, no one was willing to take on the task of maintaining interaction lists between members. Yet, as the network would grow, it would be capable of providing an income stream for whoever chose to operate the system.

Barter networks require one essential ingredient, aside from the capacity to input something of value to the group that can be traded or banked. Each member must be willing to input a reasonable value of goods or services, to be banked, thus eliminating the “trust me, I’m good for it” factor. That good faith gesture often hampers the growth of barter networks, yet should be viewed as its strength, because the input of something when joining means that there is a liquid asset to the operation, creating value. In the alternative, barter networks require small cash inputs and contractual indebtedness to ensure viability.

Many look at barter systems sceptically, assuming that they must be somehow illegal. In fact, they are not only legal, but are recognized by the tax systems of all major democratic countries. That, sadly, means that the value of goods traded is taxable. There are some minor concessions allowed, though, that enable the free trade of goods and services in a non-business environment.

Sharing programs, like barter systems, require an element of trust, but also require the charitable (or in-faith) inputs of key members. Sharing programs generally have been limited to urban bicycle-sharing groups, or even automobile pooling, but may be designed to share almost anything, including technology, apartments, equipment and even vacations (think “timeshare”). These programs generally operate as true cooperatives, but offer very viable ways to reduce individual costs while maintaining lifestyles.

Best Bets For Spring Break

We all want to do something interesting but affordable with our kids for spring break. I have compiled a list of the ten most kid and adult friendly places to go.

10. Splash Lagoon indoor water park in Erie, PA. At a dreamy 84 degrees F any day of the year this is a location of guaranteed nice weather. This place is awesome with a lazy river to lounge in atop an inner tube built for two. There are three giant hot tubs, one for adults only to relax in. An enormous tipping bucket perches on a three story tree house waiting to dump a thousand gallons of water on the waiting crowd that gathers below. Monkey Shines Island is an area for little ones only with a pool and mini slides. The biggest bonus is that there are three hotels directly attached to Splash Lagoon so you can go to your hotel room and back even in the coldest weather without having to get changed. They offer packages for hotel and Water park starting at under $200 for a two day pass for four people and one night hotel stay.

9. Cuba is a good deal for families. Some all inclusive hotels offer kids to stay free programs so you only have to pay for the flight for passengers under 12 years old. Cuba can always be booked at the last minute for cheap. The food is not five stars but it’ll keep you alive enough to enjoy some spectacular weather and beautiful beaches.

8. Cancun has so many hotel rooms that you can usually find something to your liking and in your price range even for spring break. Cancun hotels have some of the biggest pools anywhere including the 1/4 mile loop pool at the Oasis hotel. Beware of the tide though; danger level flags are raised on the beaches everyday to let swimmers know how the tide is. If the flags are red do not let little ones swim in the ocean as the unseen undertow can sweep you out to sea in the blink of an eye. Cancun can get a touch rowdy during spring break so ask for a room on the quieter side of the hotel. On the other hand if you are one of those creating the party ask for a room on the lively side so you don’t keep young families awake with your night owl habits. Most hotels have a variety of restaurants so you are assured of getting food you like. An added bonus to traveling to Cancun is that the entire city has filtered water so not only can you drink the water but you can eat washed veggies and fruit too and add ice to your drinks.

7. Dominican Republic on the Eastern side of the island of Hispaniola, Haiti occupies the Western side of the island, is always an economical choice. March travel means getting your vacation in before the annual hurricane season. Be sure to stay on the Northern side of Dominican, Puerto Plata of Sosua area, for the best beaches. If it’s culture you’re after one of the oldest churches in the western hemisphere that Christopher Columbus had built is in Santo Domingo on the south side.

6. Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fl seems like an obvious choice and you may wonder why I didn’t rate it higher. Although I am a huge Walt Disney World fan I am not so fond of the lines that come with spring break. If you can’t resist then you must go to Disneyquest which never seems to be overcrowded and is an indoor theme park that will also give relief from the scorching Florida sunshine. While you are at downtown Disney you also must eat at the Earl of Sandwich restaurant.

5. Kennedy Space Center in Cocoa Beach Florida where you can be educated and entertained simultaneously. You may be lucky enough to visit during a shuttle launch, an unforgettable experience. There are two IMAX theaters showing film of what the first space subdivision could look like on back to back screens. You can see the old space suits complete with the attached vacuum for bathroom use while out in space. You can try out freeze dried food such as ice cream just like the astronauts.

4. Get a hotel in your hometown by bidding on Priceline. You can probably get a nice hotel with an indoor pool for under $60 a night by bidding on Priceline. Often your breakfast will be included with the price of your stay. In any case there is no airfare to shell out for which makes your stay affordable. It’s like having a resort near home.

3. Day trips from home are usually affordable. Take a trip to the zoo in the spring and see the animals hopping as you never would in the summer heat.

2. Jamaica is your new island home. The people are friendly and the water is drinkable since they have had filtered water since 1928. The language is English spoken albeit with an island lilt. The food is scrumptious at even roadside stands. There are many hotels and price ranges to choose from but you’ll never be disappointed. One of the best beaches in the world in Negril can be right outside your door if you choose.

1. The number one destination of all is a cruise. Carnival is my favored cruise line because they have a wonderful children’s program with age appropriate activities for those from 3 years old up to 17. From video games to dances for teens with special recipe mock tails, Carnival’s Camp Carnival program will keep you kids busy so you can enjoy a little adult fun in the casino or the dance club or just relaxing on deck. Carnival has something for every member of your group. There is a spa for Mom and gym for Dad and a 2500 sq ft playroom for junior. There are only so many people that are allowed to board any one ship so the crowds are always under control.

Online Data Backup Service – Your Best Bet For Data Protection

When you are looking for the right kind of protection for your important files, you can always rely on online data backup times the power-packed features of the right service. Regardless of your level of computer expertise, you will find that backing up your files online is simple and hassle free.

There is only one requirement in order to use the service, that is, you must be able to actively connect to the internet to access the service. Whether you are an individual wanting to preserve memories or a business entrepreneur that needs large data storage, your best bet for data protection is to back them up online.

The online data backup is a system that automatically back up files, encrypts, and transmits the same to a dedicated server. Since the transmission is highly secured and can happen almost instantaneously, users will find the service to be time efficient and effective. Data is protected at all times with users being able to access the same data at anytime they wish.

Especially when you use the computer for your business, you will realize how practical backing up your files online can be. For one, you free your hard drive from volumes of files that can slow down the performance of your computer. Hard drives can succumb to errors particularly when they are frequently used and carelessly maintained.

Another thing is you save yourself from the hassle of manually backing up your files using traditional methods as tapes and disks. These tapes and disks will require careful handling and storage. You don’t have any guarantee that these disks and tapes are not going to fail you. What happens to your data when these tapes and disks are lost for whatever reasons?

When you safe keep your data online, the guarantee of security and protection is higher as you are practically safe keeping the data on a different location. The servers where your data are stored have their own backup mechanism to protect the integrity and reliability of your files.

Data recovery is convenient and happens almost in an instant. You just have to connect to the internet to retrieve your data. Even when your own internet connection fails, you can always access the data anywhere you can connect online. You also don’t have to worry bringing with you your storage drives when you travel as you can always access the files as long as you can go online.

There are just too many good things going when you use the online data backup service. In fact, if you are running a business with your computers, you can eliminate the need for additional manpower to back up your important files and maintain the backup disks. This will certainly contribute to the efficiency of your operations.

Corporate Events Organizers: Your Best Bet!

Corporate Events in UK play a very important role in strengthening bonds between employees of a company. Most companies are so huge that such functions seem to be the only way to get to know each other. Now-a-days, people spend more than 9 hours in office, hence it is important to jell well as colleagues and create an affable and friendly atmosphere at work. Most jobs require a lot of team effort; this is possible only if teams have a clear communication. In most cases, teams do not even know each other; hence there is a huge communication gap. It’s truly amazing how much a simple get together or a small event can help create team bonding. However, they also require a lot of creativity. It is something which requires consistent planning. In brief, you can say it is almost a full time job and handing it over to one team member would not be fair.

Corporate Event Organizers: Your Best Bet

They are certainly your best bet for having a yearlong program filled with interesting events and outings. From Interesting activities to quality food and accommodation, most they take care of everything from the scratch. These companies also have tie-ups with the best of resorts and travel agencies; hence they offer you the best deals and packages which you would not be able to negotiate otherwise. Event Organizers are thorough professionals who take care of the minute details like the colour scheme, caterers, security etc. Here are some reasons why you must hire their services for your events, UK.

Since they are connected to the best of caterers and travel agencies, they offer the best packages and deals.

You need to carry the headache of what business function to have. Most companies come up with innovative ideas and will present a cost effective way to enjoy the same.

A year long programme can be planned under the supervision of only professional help.

Events means a lot of running, hence, you can relax and enjoy the party /outing while your event organizer takes care of the rest.

Most event organizers promise ten times more business to travel agencies, resorts, caterers etc. hence, they are capable of getting you deals at a cost effective rate. Try calculating, if you try negotiating directly, it will cost you much more than an event organizers fee.

Event Organizers charge a nominal fee which makes them cost effective. Firstly, they take the load off from your head and most importantly they offer you amazing deals and packages. Hence, it is highly advised to go for Corporate Event Organizers!