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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.

America's Musical Journey - Official IMAX Trailer - YouTube

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 VisitTheUSA.com and follow Visit The USA on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

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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.

Conclusion

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.

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There is nothing more devastating than being involved in a serious accident that has the potential to have life-changing results. You might think that it’s unlikely you will ever fall foul to this kind of horrendous accident, but the fact is that there’s no way of knowing what the future holds. Life is full of surprises, and sadly, not all of them are nice ones.

One moment you could be riding along on your motorcycle, feeling the wind in your hair; the next you could be on the ground, seriously injured. One minute you could be walking to the salad bar at a restaurant, the next you could slip on some spilt water and fracture your spine.

God forbid you to end up the victim of a nasty injury; it’s important that you understand how vital your approach to healing and mindset is to your progress. Various psychologists have suggested that although there is no conclusive medical evidence to suggest that positivity can speed up the physical healing process, studies have suggested that in cases where mental as well as physical healing is required, a positive approach can be highly valuable.

Bearing that in mind, below are some suggestions to taking a more positive approach to healing and examples of how doing so can be beneficial.

1. Focus on the positives

After you’ve been involved in a serious accident, whether it was an unfortunate motorcycle pile-up or a nasty slip down some wet stairs, it’s hard to focus on the positives. Regardless of whether your injuries will completely heal or they will plague you for life, it’s easy to feel down after a serious accident or injury. However, by taking a more positive approach to things and thinking about the silver lining of what’s happened, such as that you are alive or that you will eventually heal, you can make your road back to full health an easier one. It’s far too easy to focus on the negatives in a situation like this, but if you attempt to stay positive, then you will find that your mental healing comes more quickly, helping you to feel back to your old self again in no time. One of the best ways to stay positive is to embrace the grieving process for whatever you’ve lost as a result of the accident and allow yourself to say goodbye to what could have been. A lot of people find that talking to a counsellor can help,  so this could be something that's worth considering.

2. Look to the future

By taking a more positive approach to healing, you won’t simply focus on what’s happening right now, and the bad situation that you are in. Instead, you will be able to look to the future and focus on what your future will be. Just because your accident has changed things for you doesn’t mean that you can’t have a future. The fact is that if you are willing to adapt to the changes in your circumstances, you can have an amazing future. It’s just a case of taking the time to look to the future and begin to think about what it will hold. Questions that you want to ask yourself are things like: ‘can I return to work or will I need to retrain?’ or ‘will my home need to be adapted or can I return to it?’. The fact is that there will be some hard questions to ask yourself but it’s even more important to be willing to look to the future and start planning your life again. If you take a positive approach to healing, you will find doing so a little bit easier.

3. Heal inside and out

Contrary to popular belief, the healing process after a serious accident isn’t just a physical one. Often, victims of serious or life-changing accidents are left with emotional scars caused by the trauma of what has happened to them. This is a natural part of the healing process, but one that can cause a large amount of emotional pain. It’s almost impossible to heal emotionally if you still harbour bad feelings about what has happened to you. It’s natural to feel anger and resentment at first, feelings that are often followed by a grief-like process, but it’s important to move past these feelings and learn to see the good in the situation. It may not always be easy, but the fact is that if you want to heal inside and out, you need to take a more positive approach to what has happened to you. After all, nothing that you do will change things, so it makes sense to foster a positive attitude.

After a serious or life-changing accident, it’s natural to have a range of mixed feelings. The fact is that no matter what you do or how you feel, you can’t change what’s happened - that’s something vital you have to realise. The only choice is to find a way to be more positive and take steps to move on and build a new life for yourself. It won’t always be easy, but the fact is that if you want to make the most of the life that you have left, you have to move on and be positive about things. Otherwise, you will waste your time being negative and won’t lead a full and happy life. If you need to get help to come to terms with what has happened, it’s essential that you do so. Take your time to get to grips with your injuries and the prognosis that comes with them, but wherever possible, try to remain positive.

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Buying a new car is a substantial financial commitment. After getting a house, a car is the next most significant purchase that most of us will make. Whether we are saving up to make that investment, committing to a financing deal, or even leasing a new model; a lot of consideration is needed before making the tough decision.

As a new car is an asset that depreciates quickly, it is important to try and future-proof our choices. Sure, that sporty little coupe may be a great idea for now, but what are your plans for the future? Will it still be suitable in five years’ time when you have a family? How long do you intend to keep the vehicle and what changes are likely to happen within that time frame? You will also need to consider the practical uses of the car.

Below are some thoughts to help you get started.

1. Decide On Your Requirements

When you’re making such an extravagant purchase, it’s quite easy to get carried away especially when you enter the dazzling showrooms with persuasive sales assistants. Coupled with the glossy brochures, it’s hard to resist the lure of the latest model. However, it could be a big financial mistake if you don’t carefully consider what your needs from the vehicle actually are. Functionality always needs to be the primary consideration for your purchase. First of all, think of how many passengers you may need to carry – is it just you commuting, or do you have a family situation where you may need to transport kids? Consider the conditions where you live – are ice and snow likely, or are the winters generally milder? Do you need an all-wheel drive? What sort of surfaces are you covering – off the road or paved surfaces - or minor roads in less good repair? How important is fuel economy to you? If you regularly cover long distances, you may need to prioritise this over other factors? Consider the car’s safety features too, especially if you’re likely to be driving young children. How much space for equipment and cargo do you need? And also, how much space for parking is available where you live?

2. Select Your Budget

Although it would be nice not to have to think of money, it does play a huge factor in determining the best vehicle for you. You don’t want to set your heart on a car based on other factors and then realise that the financing is way out of your reach. If you’re paying cash or from savings, you have a hard limit. But if you’re relying on taking financing out for your purchase, you need to be realistic about the deposit and monthly payments you can afford. As a general rule, no more than 20 percent of your disposable income should be going on a car payment each month. It may be a good idea to check your credit rating before applying for finance – your credit score can affect the rates you get offered, which in turn will impact what you can afford. Think about what you could do to reduce the upfront price - for example, could you time your purchase for just before a plate change, when current-year-old-plate models are reduced? Could you look at manufacturer approved used cars of 2 years old or less? Or could you see if your local showroom is planning to sell off ex-demonstrator models or has any upcoming promotions on the purchase price? All of this can really help to cut the cost – register your interest with the dealership early to be alerted to any offers. Some websites will help you go in armed with the latest information by letting you see the average price paid for the make and model you’re looking out. Remember it is possible to negotiate even on a new car sale – try to time this towards the end of the month when sales assistants may be more desperate to hit their sales target.

3. To Lease or To Buy?

If you are financing the purchase, you need to decide what route to go down with the money, as there are usually several schemes open. Look at the various APR rates offered by the dealership, and compare them to a loan you may be able to get from your bank, in case this would cost you less overall. If you do decide to go with dealer financing, there are two main options – buying, or leasing. Each has their separate pros and cons, so you need to choose which is right for your personal circumstances. If you don’t have much cash available for a deposit, leasing requires a much smaller upfront payment than a purchase agreement. There are also lower monthly payments, but you will not own the vehicle at the end of the arrangement, and you will have to agree to a ‘reasonable usage and wear and tear’ clause that may not be suitable if you do a lot of mileage. However, with depreciation taken into account, sometimes leasing is the best option. Buying the car is more expensive initially, but if you believe you will be able to achieve a good resale value, it could be the better option. Are no-trade-in and hassle-free swaps your style? Or do you need more flexibility to sell the car as and when you need and have control over what modifications to make to the vehicle?

4. Consider Similar Vehicles

You may have set your heart on that Subaru WRX or the BMW X5 but setting your heart on a specific model is not the best idea. The marketplace changes all the time with new models arriving, so the perfect vehicle for you may be just about to launch. Find comparisons of vehicles in the same class as the one you’ve got your eye on to make sure you are getting the best deal for your needs. Compare the features, specifications, and pricing of each model or look at new car buying guides if you’re not sure where to begin.

5. Find Out the True Cost of Ownership

A little internet research at the pre-purchasing stage could save you a lot of headaches further down the line. For example, did you know that some cars which are cheaper to purchase initially could end up costing more later on? Maintenance costs and average depreciation all need to be factored into your decision. Before committing, make sure you have an idea of the cost of ownership of your new vehicle. Car insurance and fuel costs are also an issue to be considered. Making a clever decision here could actually save you thousands.

6. Scope Out The Market

You don’t have to go to dealerships to find out this information anymore. Most dealers now offer a list of inventory via their website so that will help you to get a picture of what models and options are in stock before you go down. It may be worth travelling further if a particular dealership has an offer running on the model you want.

7. Set Up A Test Drive

A lot of things can change on a test drive. The vehicle you thought was perfect for you can turn out to have features you don’t like or handling that you don’t prefer – and if you’re comparing two or three similar models – like the Mercedes GLA vs. Audi Q3, for example, sometimes after driving them gives you a clearer pictures of which is a winner. Call or email your local dealership to schedule a test drive, and if you can drive all the models on your shortlist on the same day, it saves you a lot of time. Making an appointment is much better than just turning up ad-hoc, as you are sure the car is prepped and waiting for you. Before you go, take a look at some walk-around videos of the model you’re interested in and make sure to go through all your notes on pricing and features so that you can check details with the salesperson on the day. The best test drives allow you to put the vehicle through its paces exactly as you would in your daily use – so don’t be afraid to specify if there’s a particular condition you’d like to test the vehicle in. If you’re commuting, try to test the vehicle out in both slow-moving congestion and faster paces. Get in and out of the car several times and if you’re planning on carrying passengers, don’t forget to sit in the back and see what its like there. Check the cargo space and ease of loading, and if you use a child seat, bring it along to test how easy it is to fit and remove.

8. Making a Final Decision

Don’t be afraid to request another test drive if you feel you need it. If a salesperson is distracting you with their chatter, you can request to come again. It’s only right that you be allowed to focus on evaluating the driving experience for such a big purchase. There could be several good choices, so you’d be wise to sleep on any major decisions and not feel pressured into signing up for anything too quickly. Your decision should be made to last!

Know of any other tips or tricks to look out for when buying a car? Share them with us by commenting below!

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Owning a car has become quite a common part of life. Apart from living in major cities that have great transport links, a lot of us will use our cars for daily use - so much so that we can't imagine what life would be without them. However at the same time, it’s hard not to acknowledge that owning a car is expensive. When you’re not used to it, the cost of getting a car can surprise you and even when you’ve owned and have been running a car for years, you may at one point in time come to the realisation that you just need to bring those bills down.

Here are five thing you can do if you're keen to reduce the cost of car ownership.

1. Car Sharing

Car sharing can be a really great way to reduce your gas bill each month. When you’re driving yourself to work everyday, the costs can add up. However, when you begin to share that journey with others, that cost comes down. On a side note, this is also a great idea for the environment too. Keen to enroll yourself in a car sharing programme? Sign up with Uber or Grab today!

2. Drive Carefully

The way you drive has a direct impact on how much gas your car uses. Even if you think that it won’t make much of a difference, you’d be quite surprised. You only have to head over to carsdirect.com to read their post on how you can reduce your fuel consumption. When you make the conscious effort to drive carefully, you can change how much gas your car uses.

 

3. Reduce The Amount Of Time You Spend Driving

If it is suitable or convenient, you can consider reducing the amount of time you spend driving by taking the public transport or using a bicycle for short journeys. This way, it can help you to save some money especially when parking charges and tolls fees can be quite hefty.

4. Shop Around

Another major cost of car ownership will always come in the form of car insurance. To make sure that you get as much cost savings as possible, you should shop around for your car insurance by comparing prices on sites such as cheapautoinsurance.co. This way, you’ll always get the best deal and if you make the conscious effort to shop around, it will often allow you to reduce annual running costs each year.

5. Prioritise Maintenance

Finally, you should also look to stay on top of maintaining your car. Most car breakdowns could have have been avoided if the car has been well-maintained. Yes, maintenance and services will cost you, but they’re cheaper than having to pay for major repairs. It is recommended that you send your car for servicing and maintenance every 6 months.

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Time waits for no man and we only have two years left until the turn of the decade. If you are in your thirties or forties now, things from your youth might no longer be so new.

Although time does not necessarily affect all of us in a bad way, we have to keep in mind that things from the 90s or even the early 2000s are now slowly becoming decades old. What this means is that some things from your youth or your early adulthood are now slowly starting to be seen as classics.

Whether it’s cars, video games, movies or actors; they are all starting to be the new “old school”, and while some may see that as somewhat depressing, it’s quite nice seeing how things are liked enough by the general public that they get dubbed as “classics”. After all, it’s not an easy title to acquire.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at a few car models from that time period which are now either already being called classics, or probably will be a classic soon enough.

The Rolls Royce Phantom VII

Despite only being released a tad later than the other cars in this post, it certainly does not lack class and is highly deserving of the "classic" title. Considering that the Rolls Royce Phantom VII is the seventh edition of the long-running Phantom series of Rolls Royce cars, it has certainly earned its spot amongst the greats over the last 15 years.

The Subaru WRX

The WRX has been around since 1992 but it certainly does not feel like much time has passed since then. WRX stands for “World Rally eXperimental”, but some people say that it also stands for “World Rally Cross”. Though nobody really knows for sure; what we do know is that this series has been met with positive reception and has seen several newer models of the Subaru WRX to come out over the years. Do the older versions now deserve the title of “classic” at this point? “Yes” would be a safe bet.

The Dodge Viper

With one of the most stylish designs to ever grace a car, the Dodge Viper is the raw definition of sleek and powerful. Production began in 1992 but was recently stopped in 2017. If you want to snatch a Dodge Viper from somewhere, you might still have a chance. Although all sorts of concept cars and exotic sports cars are released all the time, the Dodge Viper has become a fan favourite of sorts. It could be the simplistic design or the striking paint job but the Dodge Viper is certainly iconic in this day and age, and no one can deny that.

Lotus Elise

Much like the Viper, the Lotus Elise is a two-seater with rear-wheel drive. Despite being conceived in 1994, the Lotus Elise was only released two years later in September 1996. Since then, it has had its fair share of exposure both in pop culture and even car-oriented video games. Considering that the Lotus Elise is currently in its third series, it’s safe to say that it is doing pretty well. The first edition of the Lotus Elise is widely recognised and surely deserves a spot amongst the other modern classics.

Think of any other cars that are becoming new classics? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Your car needs to be well looked after in order for it to perform optimally.

According to experts, the upkeep of a vehicle monthly can cost up to $100 for the cheapest make and a lot more for an expensive one. If your car is precious to you, you will want to spend that amount and probably a lot more in order to make sure that your vehicle stays as efficient as when you first bought it.

Looking after your car can be costly, but it is more expensive to pay a lump sum of money when it breaks down and stop working altogether after years of neglect.

Here are 6 tips to help you keep your car running properly this year and prevent any unwanted surprises:

1. Replace Worn Tires and Rims

The safety and performance of your car depend on the effectiveness of your tires, and as a result, it is of paramount importance that you put aside some money to replace overused tires and rims. According to a recent study, worn tires could be the cause of about 200 road fatalities every year. Due to wear and tear, most tires start decreasing in quality after they have been used for some time. Look into replacing worn tires and rims this year in order to keep your vehicle running safely.

2. Get the Wheels Aligned

If you align your vehicle’s wheels, you ensure these are set to the optimum position, as outlined by the manufacturer. Having your car’s wheels non-aligned means they will wear out earlier, meaning your safety behind the wheel could also be at risk. If you are a heavy car user or have recently hit a kerb while on the road, this might have caused your wheels to become unaligned and we suggest you book your car in for a check to see if the alignment is correct. This has been proven to prolong the life of your tyres by up to 19,000 kilometres and as well as increase fuel efficiency.

3. Pay Attention to the Intake Valves

If your car has trouble running smoothly, there might be a problem with your intake valves and it could be the result of excessive carbon buildup. This is what usually happens to vehicles when they have been driven for over 80,000 kilometres. Direct injection engine-based cars are specifically at risk of this happening since the fuel in these is not sprayed on the intake valves, thus resulting in the valves not getting the proper clean up they need. If your car keeps stalling or if it is not running smoothly when temperatures are low, this Bavarian BMW repair store will help you get your car back to form.

4. Clean Air Filters Regularly

Cleaning the air filters regularly is less costly than replacing the parts of the engine these protect, and as a result, it is advisable that you do this from time to time in order to elongate the lifespan of your car. Combustion engines require a mixture of fuel and oxygen to run correctly and the air that is used has to be cleaned before this makes its way into the engine. Unless the air is clean, dust and debris will inevitably be caught up in the engine, and this will affect its performance. This is why it is essential to make sure you clean the air filters regularly. Furthermore, it is cheaper to get the air filters cleaned than to replace an engine. Contact a professional mechanic to inspect and clean the air filters.  

5. Have the Exhaust System Inspected

The exhaust is a vital part of the car. It helps filter away gaseous residue from the engine. In order to have your exhaust system running as healthily as possible, you could run some checks yourself that will help you be sure about the state of your exhaust. You could brush off the rust from it and check if it has any small holes, as the presence of these could be dangerous to the running of your car. Small holes allow for external air to penetrate your engine and this could be dangerous in the long term as this air could contain dust and debris.

6. Wash Your Car Regularly

Your car needs to look good for it to be admired and washing your car regularly helps prevent any accumulation of unsightly stains. Waxing your vehicle also keeps it shiny as it creates a protective barrier between the paint and the weather so that your vehicle can endure the harshest conditions without its surface being completely ruined. By maintaining the outward and inward appearance of your car, you indirectly extends its lifespan and increases its resale value.

Keeping your car in good check isn’t cheap but it is worth the investment in the long term as it will extend the lifespan of your car. While your car might not be the latest trendy model in town, it is still a sturdy piece of machinery that aids you in commuting from one point to another, whether it be for work or play.

Got any other tips to keep your car running properly? Share it with us by commenting below!

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Going back to study can be both exciting and scary at the same time but it need not be if you are thoroughly prepared. There are many reasons for wanting to go back to study. Whether it is to get a better job, to improve your skills, or simply to see where it takes you; it is always important to be prepared physically, mentally, and emotionally. When we’re young, we don’t always know what we want to do and we often feel too pressured to decide. After all, many people who decide which path to take when they are young end up changing it later on anyway!

The good news is, you’re never too old to go back to study! 

However, there are a couple of important questions that you should ask yourself first.

1. Are You Prepared To Do An Access Course?

Luckily, if you’re a mature student, you don’t have to worry too much about whether you’re qualified enough to begin learning as most places will also look at your experience. With that being said, you may need to be prepared to do an access course. Access courses are usually short but intense, so you need to be prepared for this if you want to get on the course that you really wish to do.

2. Have You Chosen The Right Course?

This is going to be a decision that will take up a lot of time in your life. You’re going to live and breathe your new course, even if you choose a flexible option. Make sure the course curriculum is what you expect it to be. Speak to students who have already done the course. Weigh up the pros and cons. This isn’t to put you off or give you analysis paralysis, but you need to make sure that the course you’re going to do is what you really want.

3. How Will You Fund Your Study?

Funding your study is probably your main concern. If you’re lucky enough to have a part-time job that can fit your study schedule, you won’t have to worry too much. There are a few options available if you need some extra help. You could get a personal loan to help fund your learning, or see if there are any official student grants that you can take advantage of. In some cases, schools will loan you money for your education and even offer you a small sum of money for monthly maintenance. Just make sure you know exactly how this will be paid back once you have completed your course.

4. Will You Be Able To Fit Your Studies Around Your Current Lifestyle?

You might have stars in your eyes at the moment, dreaming about how you’re going to make this work. You might convince yourself that you’re going to be able to fit it all in, but you really need to make sure that you’re not going to be overwhelmed. One way of doing this is by looking at your calendar and then blocking out your time; figuring out how much time you’ll have for the rest of your responsibilities when you’ve taken this into account.

Thought of any other questions that may come in handy for those who are contemplating on going back to study? Share them in the comments section below!

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If one of your goals in 2018 is to change your life by finally starting that new business venture, you’re going to have to get serious. Here are six basic steps you will need to take to get your business off the ground and start living the life of your dreams:

1. Set Your Mind and Do Your Research

First of all, you’re going to need to really narrow down exactly what it is you want to do. Whether it's starting your own travel business, selling designer fashion apparels or becoming a professional blogger; you’re going to want to start researching every aspect of the industry, its strengths and weaknesses, and what you will need to do to give yourself the best possible chance of success.

2. Draw Up a Business Plan

You can’t just apply for a business loan and expect to get one if you haven’t crunched the numbers and created a detailed business plan that takes into account all eventualities that could come up in the course of your business. Most lenders will want to see a business plan that covers 5-10 years into the future, so this won’t be easy, but it is essential.

3. Secure Financing

Once you have your business plan, it’s time to start seeking that much-needed finance. It’s always worth trying the banks first, but if you strike out with them, don’t worry because there are many other avenues that could prove more fruitful, from crowdfunding to angel investors. The key is to not give up at the first hurdle - keep going until you convince someone that your idea is worth investing in!

4. Make it Official

If you have secured the funds you need, and you’re ready to start trading, make it official! How you do this will depend wholly on where you are operating from, but a good corporate lawyer will be able to tell you what you need to do to incorporate your business and start trading wherever you are. Yes, they are expensive, but if you want your business to be set up right from the start, it’s money well spent.

5. Trademark Your Business

Once that’s all sorted, you may want to consider trademarking various aspects of your business so that they cannot be copied or stolen by other people. Even if you aren’t selling unique products, it is probably a good idea to trademark your business name if you want to ensure that other companies can’t piggyback off it and possibly bring your company into disrepute by association.

6. Work Hard

Now, the hard work really begins. It’s rare for a new business not to struggle in those first few years, but you need to stick with it, keep working hard and never stop striving if you want your company to be one of the few that are still around in 5 years’ time.

So many people with great business ideas never do anything about it and many of those who do give up way too soon. Don't be one of them, take these simple steps to get your business off the ground and be the success you know you can be!

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Indonesia.

Is it a place you currently have on your bucket list of countries to visit?

With some of the most beautiful destinations and places to see and experiences to have, it’s easy to understand why so many people would like to go there at least once in their lifetime. There are of course other popular destinations such as Jakarta or Bali that many of us would have already heard of but while there are other places to see and many things to do in the region; here are some tips that could come in handy if you ever decide to visit Indonesia. So if you are looking for everything that you would need to know about your next holiday to Indonesia, read on to find out more.

The Places To Visit

Indonesia as a region may have been on your bucket list, but where should you go? 

There are many popular destinations within Indonesia that are worth considering. From beaches to city vibes, I thought I would share with you some of them.

Bali

If you think Indonesia, chances that the next word to pop into your head will be Bali. One of the most popular destinations in Indonesia, Bali really needs no introduction but I am going to tell you a little bit about it anyway. Bali has long been a place for people to take vacations, thanks to the wonderful luxurious resorts that adorn the sparkly shoreline. Even then, there are also many backpackers and tourists who are on a shoestring budget but still taking in the beauty of this destination. Bali is certainly a place that rocks many buckets lists for sure. If you are looking for a more ancient Bali vibe, heading north will give you all of the thrills.

Jakarta

Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia that is home to more than nine million people, is a sprawling city. Many people use Jakarta as a pit stop for a few days of fun and sightseeing before heading off to some of the more remote islands or the popular resort of Bali. The Kota Tui Old Town in Jakarta is definitely worth a visit. If you are planning to buy a property in Jakarta, websites like https://rumahdijual.com/gedung-dijual might be helpful. Jakarta is definitely worthy of a stop before heading somewhere for a bit of relaxation, but don’t forget that it is also a great hub for business and investment opportunities.

 

Gili Islands

Want a tropical paradise, then look no further than the Gili Islands. A trio of islands between Lombok and Bali, these little gorgeous nuggets of tranquillity are not to be missed. The two smaller islands, Gili Air and Gili Meno, are quite secluded and laidback whereas the larger of the three, Gili Trawangan, is a much livelier place to see. A real hive for backpackers, the rustic bars at Gili Islands is filled with a mix of cultures and people from all over the globe.

Lombok

Hate following the crowds? Then Lombok is the next best alternative to the ever-popular Bali. Despite its growing popularity in recent decades, most of the Eastern Island in Lombok is still underdeveloped, which makes it a real beauty for some tranquillity. With less of the commercialised bars, clubs and restaurants, and more of the rustic and simple features, Lombok is a great place if you are after some time of pure thinking space with no distractions other than the beautiful weather and ocean. 

When Should You Travel To Indonesia?

One of the big considerations when travelling to Indonesia is the weather; thus make sure you travel during the best season. The best time to visit Indonesia is between May and September where the days are dry and sunny. Websites like https://www.lonelyplanet.com/indonesia/weather are especially helpful should you need more information about the current local weather in Indonesia.

The Best Things To Do In Indonesia

For some people, a holiday is often just about finding a decent sun lounger with a bar close by in a great beach resort. There is nothing wrong with that and as we have already pointed out, destinations like Bali would suit that kind of holiday style. However, if you want to see and do some of the more popular things, here are some suggestions:

Mount Bromo

Mount Bromo is part of a collection of volcanoes that are active and is part of the Tengger Massif. It isn’t the tallest of them, but it is certainly one of the most well-known and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Indonesia. Sitting at 7,641ft high, it is certainly something to be marvelled at and definitely worthy of a visit.

Ubud

If you are looking for something cultural, then look no further than the heart of Bali. Nestled against the stunning terraced rice fields, which are also a sight to behold, Ubud holds dance and musical performances in the city daily. If you want to learn about the Balinese culture, Ubud is definitely the place.

Borobudur

Finally, no trip would be complete without heading to the world's largest Buddhist temple, Borobudur. Built in the 9th century during the reign of the Sailendra Dynasty, the temple design follows Javanese Buddhist architecture, which blends the Indonesian indigenous cult of ancestor worship and the Buddhist concept of attaining Nirvana. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Borobudur is Indonesia's single most visited tourist attraction.

While some people may be put off from travelling as far as Indonesia for a holiday, it is certainly worth the long journey. With so much to see and do, you may end up feeling like one holiday there won’t be enough. Couples, backpackers, students on GAP years or even families will all benefit from some of the amazing things this region has to offer. I certainly think it should definitely be a place for you to consider visiting in the future.

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