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Tagged With "fuel costs"

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Re: Hamburg concert hall: Overdue, Over Budget, Finished

DrFumblefinger ·
Nothing like inept bureaucrats to run up the budget....Imagine, €300 for a toilet brush! I'm sure an adequate brush could have been purchased for €3. And that's just one example. Beautiful building, but at a cost of nearly $US 1 billion, it does seem a bit pricey.
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Re: Tips to help with packing no matter where you are going

Travel Rob ·
Great tips! PHeymont's suggestion of using a laundromat is really useful and the cost is usually just a little bit more than what a luggage locker would be anyway. I have noticed that carry-on bags people are taking are getting smaller and much easier to handle.
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Re: Boston in the fall - suggestions please!

Mac ·
Thank you Dr. F. - wise words we will keep 1-2 hotels booked ahead and be flexible beyond that. We are really looking forward to this new 'slice' of America, I never realised that the Pilgrim fathers just named every new town after their old home towns - I'm going to be quite confused!! Thanks too Garry that looks lovely! I envy you being there ahead of us!! PS we are now on the verge of booking Cuba too and are horrified at the cost that Virgin Atlantic is trying to screw us for an upgrade...
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Re: Gumbo's Pic of the Day, Oct 20, 2015: Sicilian Fiat

DrFumblefinger ·
Let's also not forget the Volkswagon on the European side. And the Ford Model T, which so greatly dropped the cost of an automobile it became a mass consumer good.
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Re: Money Savings Tips, for your Big Trip - Part 1

TravelingCanuck ·
Thanks Samantha. All great tips. Some we do now and some (public transit) we do not since we live outside Edmonton and both work in the city. A 15 minute commute would turn into over an hour on transit. We actually just redid our cable subscription, obtained a better plan and updated internet with a reduced monthly cost. With our kids now moved out we are able to save a good bit on our utilities, phone costs and especially food costs. All extra coin for the next trip.
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Re: Money Savings Tips, for your Big Trip - Part 1

Travel Rob ·
Great tips.! Cable companies usually don't reward loyalty and offer their best promotional rates to new people. Netflix, Amazon Prime are good ways to save on cable bills if you can get internet. As far as eating out, I always find it's a question of what I order. I avoid drinks, desserts , and the cost is not bad at all.
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Re: Now an airline charge for NOT flying!

GarryRF ·
If you do call the airline to cancel your return ticket you get no refund. They will probably sell your seat for more than your two-way ticket cost. If you try to reschedule your return for another day they will charge full price with no discount for being polite and doing the right thing. So you just walk away and find another airline. The Philosophy of W.C. Fields. "Never give a sucker an even break"
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Re: Money Savings Tips, for your Big Trip - Part 1

Samantha ·
Hi there Rob. Since I wrote this post we actually cut the cable and only have OTA and Netflix. Saves us over $100.00 a month. Nice amount to save for our travel adventures! And you are right about the drinks. That is what will kill you. Stay away from them and it should help. Thanks for the comments. Part 2 this week!
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Re: Money Savings Tips, for your Big Trip - Part 1

Samantha ·
Thanks for the comment. Glad you were able to get a new contract with your cable company. We had Comcast and they don't care about retaining customers, only getting new ones Such a shame. Thanks for the comment and happy travels.
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Re: Slim airline seats unpopular

PHeymont ·
Well, that's the question. Initially they are saying this is how we can keep 32" and still add seats. Next year, they may ask what's wrong with 30". Just as banks first encouraged ATM use go reduce cost of tellers...and then, when that saving was realized, began charging for their use.
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Re: India Easing Visa Requirements

PortMoresby ·
Advance visas have always been something of a bother for potential visitors to any country but the last year or so residents of the US have been plagued by difficulties trying to obtain visas to visit India. Originally processed by the consulates, of late the process has been subcontracted to a private operator, BLS, and it's been a nightmare for many. Visas have been delayed beyond the proposed departure dates and numbers of passports have even been lost entirely. Forums are rife with...
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Re: Where We Went: London, Paris, Toronto

PortMoresby ·
What's also interesting about the information is that it's from hotels.com which says in the first line it's helping us find "the best cities around the world". I'm not sure I buy the premise that popular is best. Another index I also find VERY interesting, in the quest to locate interesting places for longer stays on a budget, is the cost of living index for places around the world. While visitor costs and resident costs are not the same, still, it's an interesting tool and also gives us...
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Re: Where We Went: London, Paris, Toronto

PHeymont ·
That's a great point! I never like "best" lists, anyway...and like to stray into any place that looks good and take a chance on whether it's "Zagat-quality." The cost of living is interesting, too, especially for travelers on tight budgets; my experience in Portugal last summer (see BLOG here on TravelGumbo) has sent a couple of younger colleagues off to plan Portugal trips instead of more expensive parts of Europe.
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Re: Should Wi-Fi be free in all hotels?

PHeymont ·
Technically, it would be possible to create very large WiFi zones, whether free or paid. But since someone gets paid (either on the meter, or a fee for the project) and there is a cost to constructing/installing the equipment to broadcast that signal...it won't happen unless someone is paying. In the case of the hotel, picking up on rbciao's point about breakfast--have you noticed that the free WiFi and the free breakfast tend to come with the budget chains, while the high-end places charge...
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Re: Should Wi-Fi be free in all hotels?

DrFumblefinger ·
Good discussion! WiFi has for me become an indispensable part of traveling. It allows me to stay in touch with family easily and cheaply (remember how hard it was even 25 years ago -- a phone call could run you $5 a minute? And there was no email). It lets me spend evening hours clearing out a hefty email que, and doing research on what I am going to see tomorrow and the next day. And with "Gumbo on the Go", it lets me share my travels as they happen with fellow Gumboites! I echo PHeymont's...
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Re: Should Wi-Fi be free in all hotels?

DrFumblefinger ·
Originally Posted by JohnT: Maybe it's the old capitalist coming out in me, but I think "should" is a strong word. Free access to wi-fi certainly helps me determine where I'll stay, just like free breakfast is...but if a hotel has enough other amenities so that people are willing to pay for it's wi-fi then so be it...although it is easy enough to get free somewhere, I don't value it enough to pay for it. I agree with you John, that market forces will drive this. But the demand for "free"...
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Re: Finishing college. Need help planning trip to U.K,

GarryRF ·
Staying in the UK is no more expensive than being a tourist in the USA. You wont get a month in London. Same as me travelling from the UK to New York. Silly Prices ! So decide on what you want to do over here and start planning, Have a look at the YHA web site. Youth Hostels Association. Forget the Youth reference. My Kids aren't Youths anymore. And I use them too! They are used by Travellers like yourself - and me - across Europe. They are Family groups and Ramblers ( Countryside Walkers)...
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Re: Finishing college. Need help planning trip to U.K,

Hank ·
That's helpful too, Rob. So with your guys advice, I'm thinking of the following plan, which still has holes I need to fill. I actually like the idea of Paris more than Scotland for this trip, plus I worry about the cost of travel to Scotland back so unless I can get a really cheap plane ticket or train ticket to Edinburgh, I think I'll drop that and focus on eastern UK and then on to Paris. So this is where I'm at now: 1) Arrive in Manchester. Maybe ??2 days 2) Travel Liverpool. 3 days 3)...
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Re: We Love our Travel Gadgets--And We Take Them with Us

DrFumblefinger ·
It would be interesting to see the breakdown between domestic trips and international trips. I think we'd see the rates of smartphone use drop on international journeys because of the complexities and cost of connecting, unless it's with wi-fi. Tablet use probably wouldn't change significantly. But no, I'm not surprised at all.
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Re: Sri Lanka: A Land Like No Other. (Part 5) The Elephants of Pinnawala

DrFumblefinger ·
Thanks, PortMoresby! And we've not even been to the sacred tooth relic in Kandy, the medieval ruins of Polonnaruwa, the beautiful hill country filled with tea plantations and "The World's End", a wildlife safari at Yala National Park, nor any of the nice beaches (but keep reading -- reports on these are coming). Sri Lanka is a great destination, especially now that the civil war is over. I was doubly lucky to not only be able to visit a dear friend there but to have time to leisurely explore...
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Re: Capital of Culture Series: Liverpool

Travel Rob ·
Not only is Liverpool a great city to visit,but it has so many great places for daytrips that make staying there an excellent base. And to me it seems prices are half the cost of London. One thing Garry might expand on in the thousands of European tourists that are coming there for the day or weekend ,thanks to the budget flights. It has a very international feel to it.
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Re: controversial architecture? - Parasol Sevilla

DrFumblefinger ·
I wonder how many millions of Euros it cost? Actually, I think I'd rather not know. Thanks again, JohnT for sharing these wonderful photos of your Spanish adventure. You've set a pretty high watermark for other members to match. Have a safe journey home.
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Re: Airbus Survey: 41% Willing to Pay for More Space

DrFumblefinger ·
Good for Airbus! It seems the airline industry may have reached a tipping point where people will pay a little more for a little comfort. I hope that's the case and that they listen and provide options. I always look for a good airfare, but I also look at what kind of comfort that airfare buys me and am willing to pay a little more for a little more. 8-12 hours on a plane is not great fun, although I can divert my attention usually. But it's made infinitely more pleasant by a few extra...
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Re: Buddy, Can You Spare 5.3 Million Dimes?

Former Member ·
This is a no brainer. The money was left behind by frustrated travelers. It should be used to minimize some of the frustration and indignity imposed on travelers at the TSA checkpoints. Little things would make a big difference in the "reassembly area" : + Buy easy-to-clean sturdy benches for the re-assembly area. + Put footstools in front of benches to help with putting on shoes. + Put baskets under the benches so people can place their small backpacks, purses, shoes, and belts out of the...
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Re: Do you Like these Hotel Tipping Tips ?

JohnT ·
I just don't know what to think. Does every question to a front office staff or concierge deserve a tip? How many envelopes do I need to carry for three weeks for housekeeping? If you are fortunate enough to get twice daily service do you tip both times? On my last trip because it was low season, we spoiled ourselves with a very nice hotel.... I admit more times than one desperately searching my pockets for change or (gulp) even a five Euro note... I understand that hotel staff does not make...
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Re: Doctor List for Traveling

PortMoresby ·
Are you a worrier? Do you run to the doctor at the first sign of possible trouble? Are you particularly clumsy and break bones? If the answers are no, as it sounds like they might be, I'd say don't bother with the insurance. If you need an English speaking doctor in Italy you'll find one. Your hotel or any pharmacy will help. It won't cost an arm & a leg if rumor is true. I don't know precisely because even though I travel a lot I answered no to all my questions too, don't need doctors...
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Re: Doctor List for Traveling

Mac ·
SueZee, wherever you travel in the world your hotel will find you a suitable doctor who will speak enough English for your needs - just like Dr.F says - and Italy will have plenty. Don't bother with lists as they will always be out of date by the time you might want to use them, plus it will no doubt not list a great doc that the hotel knows is just around the corner! At the worst the hotel will have an English speaking staff member sit with you to help translate. Conversely, I do think that...
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Re: Doctor List for Traveling

PortMoresby ·
Mac says, a good travel insurance policy is an absolute requirement - The part he left off was "for me", for him. Insurance, any kind, is playing the odds. When you buy it you're betting you'll have a disaster. When you don't you're figuring the likelihood of a dire event is low. If you take an occasional trip of short duration and can afford insurance, sure, why not. When the number & length of trips begins to mount and the budget becomes more of an issue then maybe not. It's called...
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Re: Doctor List for Traveling

DrFumblefinger ·
As with many things travel, insurance is a matter of choice. Travel Health Insurance seems to be a lot more expensive in the US than elsewhere. Policies in the US usually include trip cancellation and medical coverage and often run 5-6% the cost of a trip. Given the amount you travel, Mac, the investment of a few hundred dollars a year seems prudent to me. But when I was 30 the thought of insurance never crossed my mind. Not once. A few years ago I did start buying trip cancellation (and...
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Re: 1000's Drawn to North Dakota

Former Member ·
A lot of people who went there are now packing out. The Salvation Army is trying to help people - who cannot afford the cost of living in these places - "escape" from boomtown. http://money.cnn.com/2013/01/1...html?iid=SF_PF_River I see ads in the Indianapolis Craigslist for people wanting RVs and travel trailers to take the Dakotas and Montana. Makes me wonder where they will park them when they arrive, how they will stand the winter, and if they did any research into the cost of living...
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Re: 1000's Drawn to North Dakota

DrFumblefinger ·
I have not done that, Rob, but I do have some friends in North Dakota. The wages are good, but before anyone makes the jump there, be sure you understand the cost of housing and such. Apartments and homes are in short supply and expensive. But as you pointed out, so is labor. So if you can share an apartment with someone and are willing to work more than 40 hours a week, you can save a nice stash of cash. Don't just go. Educate yourself. There are excellent job opportunities in the Dakotas,...
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Re: Ryanair: Sell the Extras, Give Away the Tickets?

PHeymont ·
I certainly remember People Express...the only reason I became familiar with Newark Airport. We used to fly to Buffalo ($19, $29, $39) and then rent a car to visit family in Toronto. Then we snagged $49 specials from NY to SFO...and while we were sitting on the plane realized we could have gone to London for the same price! Which we did the next year, but it cost us a bit more. PE didn't always make its schedule, and other things could go wrong, but the staff were unfailingly friendly and...
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Re: Paris warned: bigger floods will happen

GarryRF ·
One flood management project - close to me - was deemed to be unviable as its cost of £26 million was beyond the value of the damage that might be incurred. The local population ( not experts in London ) whose homes were at risk designed a system of releasing pressure points for the flood water at under £1 million. During recent floods the knowledge of locals has been proven to give greater value than University Educated "experts"
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Re: Air Miles vs Low Fare Airline

PHeymont ·
Amazing the way these calculations work out. We're going to England next spring, using American Airlines points. The flight selection offered us flights on British Airways and American. The AA flights cost the points plus government fees. The BA flights cost the points plus the government fees, plus enough surcharges to make a $1000+ difference. If I only had the BA flights, I'd certainly rather find a low-cost carrier! It will be interesting to see what happens in the coming year as Aer...
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Re: Bumped up to Business on Turkish Airlines

GarryRF ·
On my last London - San Francisco flight I was in my Sunday best clothes and managed to score 2 First Class seats. I asked the Flight Attendant why are we having smoked salmon sandwiches with afternoon tea. We've already had salmon for lunch. He replied : "Someone has made an awful mistake putting salmon on the Menu twice on one flight. Ask for a complaints form - then ask for half your money back" " On what I paid " - I told him - " half my money back wouldn't cover the cost of the sandwiches"
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Re: With no Emirates order, A380 production may end

GarryRF ·
The A380 varies in size and passenger numbers. Not every A380 has 800 seats. Some have 500 seats while some have 723 seats.But the overall cost of a A380 is $317.2 - 337.5 million (American).
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Re: Is it time to regulate airplane seats? Chris Elliott thinks so!

DrFumblefinger ·
The trouble with a mandate is that it has deadlines and airlines who fly to the US would have to go through an expensive seat replacement program. That cost is one we share, or that puts the airlines in the red and in jeopardy. Makes sense to pressure them to improve, but that's just my opinion. But I do like the idea of "grading" seats. Helps me know what I'm buying. For example, Canadian airlines definitely have larger seats that American carriers. I'll preferentially fly Air Canada to...
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Re: Finding Reiner #8: Trail's End?

DrFumblefinger ·
It would have been so very nice for you to have found Reiner as an elderly man slowly walking home with the aid of his cane from his daily dip in the mineral spring, and joined him for a revitalizing sip of schnaps and shared with him your journey. How cool would it have been for you to say, "Hi, Reiner. I'm your nephew's wife, Whitney". I think he'd be tickled to no end to know how much you've cared and how hard you've tried to find him.... Sadly, the absence of an ending like this should...
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

DrFumblefinger ·
I think I'm seeing better ticket prices than I have for several years now, so I'm not sure if this is completely true. But it could just represent a biased sampling (Canada, more than US flights).
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

PHeymont ·
Overall, for U.S. airlines, the trend is up; last month all the majors went along with a $2 average increase on almost all fares. Those fares, of course, are subject to competitive discounting on specific flights or routes; Alaska and Delta have been battling over the Seattle market all year, for example, affecting prices on those routes.
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

Travel Rob ·
With Airline consolidation the last few years and some budget airlines changing their image and prices, there doesn't seem to be that downword pressure for most prices in the US
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

GarryRF ·
The cost of an Airline Ticket has little to do with the cost of a barrel of oil. That's why I can fly to Sydney Australia for the same price as I can to New York. That's 3500 miles to New York or 10,500 miles to Sydney. Same price. It's solely based on the principle of how much juice you can squeeze from an orange.
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

PHeymont ·
While it's true that competition and cupidity rather than cost are the basis of pricing, fuel does factor in: when fuel is high, the airlines add surcharges, and when fuel costs drop, they seldom remove them!
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Re: Why tickets stay high while fuel prices drop

GarryRF ·
Airlines and many other companies are determined to squeeze the public to the last drop of juice. Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Price_fixing_cases and see that there's no honour amongst thieves. Steal from one man and its theft. Steal from a thousand and its Corporate Policy.
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Re: Heads Up for Travelers: Iceland's Volcanoes May Disrupt Travel Again

PortMoresby ·
There can be an up side to travel during an eruption. My plans proceeded during the 2010 eruption and the first result was a southern route to Rome and a spectacular view of the Pyrenees, flying parallel to them. I learned how big those mountains are, had had no idea. After arrival in Rome I immediately booked sleeper compartment tickets from Budapest to London (already had Rome-Budapest), to replace the flight I'd booked. As it transpired, the flight ban was over by the time I got on the...
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Re: Gumbo's Pic of the Day, Aug 21st, 2014:The Cigar Man

Travel Rob ·
GarryRF, I could only think of the Visa Credit Card ads when I saw this great piece about Hector! Cost of one of the worlds finest cigars ,$10 . Experience of spending time with Hector, Priceless. My guess is , it's cash only in Hector's case.
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Re: Help with mobile phone for Morocco

PortMoresby ·
One more thought. Think long term. If you're likely to travel again and might need a phone again, buying one will be even more cost effective. And buying one after you arrive will be least expensive. Phone service in the US is notoriously expensive. People in developing countries all have mobile phones because of the lack of infrastructure for land lines. So low-income working people all over the world rely on cell service and it must be cheap. So doing as the locals do when you travel...
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Re: Help with mobile phone for Morocco

PHeymont ·
If you take a look at http://prepaidgsm.net, you’ll see the reason for PortMoresby’s recommendation. It’s not the cost of the phone, it’s the cost of every minute, often many times that of a local SIM. For example, the Mobal SIM comes with a rate for Morocco of $1.50 a minute outgoing and $1.50 a minute incoming. Meditel, one of the Moroccan carriers, charges (depending on plan) about 10c a minute up to 40c a minute, and no charge for incoming. Mobal will sell you data at $28.99 for ONE...
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Re: Help with mobile phone for Morocco

PortMoresby ·
I have a Mobell (same company as Mobal) UK sim that I got years ago, very convenient, phone bills charged to my credit card, rather than having to keep track of the balance and "top up". However, calls are relatively expensive although I don't mind for the convenience and limited use when I'm in the UK. Knowing full well it would cost me, about a £ a minute because I was in Italy, I allowed a British friend who was meeting me in Italy to call me when she arrived using her UK phone and my UK...
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Re: Marriott to offer free wi-fi to all its Rewards member

PHeymont ·
While business travelers are important to those brands, Marriott and the others make a big pitch to fill those rooms with vacationing and weekending families and couples, too—and I'm sure you've seen a lot of them there. As you point out, the cost of WiFi for business travelers is usually absorbed by the company, so it's hard to see why this new benefit would be attractive to them, since it's already essentially free for them. So it seems obvious that the benefit is, in fact, aimed at the...
 
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