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Top 5 things to do in Toronto this holiday season

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Holiday Fair at Nathan Phillips Square

Location: Nathan Phillips Square
Time: Dec 1-23, 2017

The pavilion outside City Hall hosts its first holiday market, offering traditional street food, artisanal crafts, carnival-style rides for the kids and an open-air ice bar for some holiday spirits.
As far as Toronto-specific winter activities go, it doesn’t get more traditional than a turn on the Nathan Phillips ice rink. But if skating isn’t your thing, there’s also a merry-go-round nearby.

 

 

Casa Loma Canadian Winterland Nights
Time: Dec 18, 2017-Jan 7, 2018, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Excluding December 24, 25, 31 and January 6.
Location: Casa Loma, 1Austin Terrace

Casa Loma will be transformed into a winter wonderland this season, where guests are invited to explore the holiday magic of Toronto’s castle at night. Wander through stunning light displays in the gardens and witness a holiday-themed magic show. Guests are also invited to visit Santa in his workshop, sing alongside live carollers, enjoy hot cocoa and more!

 

 

Toronto Christmas Market
Location: Distillery Historic District
Time: Nov 16-Dec 23, 2017

Inspired by the European Christkindlmarkt that originated in Germany in the 1400s. The Toronto Christmas Market brings local crafts, musicians and artisan food for a festive experience through this Christmas in the historical Distillery District.
During the holiday season calories don’t count. Feel free to taste all the amazing food that you can find here.
Disney on Ice
Location: Rogers Centre
Time: Dec22, 2017- Jan 1, 2018

Our favorite Disney characters and stories are brought to life with the artistry of ice-skating to create an unforgettable family experience as Disney on Ice presents Reach for the Stars. All the beauty, sparkle and fantasy that Disney is known for come together in this production.

 

 

The Nutcracker
Location: Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Art, 145 Queen Street West
Time: Dec 9-3, 2017

Is it really the holiday season until you’ve seen this? Tchaikovsky’s classic score comes to life onstage thanks to the National Ballet of Canada.

Created in 1995 by the National Ballet’s former Artistic Director James Kudelka, this stunningly designed and richly choreographed version of the perennial Christmas classic is a holiday gem, traditional and touchingly affectionate, yet imbued with the vigour, wit and briskness of a contemporary sensibility. The dreams and imaginative powers of childhood, the lure of fantasy and the sheer appeal of spectacle all form part of Kudelka’s vision, which comprises virtuosic dance, inspired comedy and the unbridled visual extravagance that one has come to expect from The Nutcracker.

I never expected this to happen

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There is something really special about travelling to Paris.

Those of you who have been there will understand. We’ve all heard about Paris, of the city’s rich history, great food, deep culture, and of the beautiful Seine river. Some of the world’s most iconic events have taken place in there.

It seems like only yesterday

After a quick train ride from Milan to Strasbourg, I transferred and took my first train into Paris. I remember that afternoon when I arrived and the special feeling I felt knowing that I was in such a special city.

I spent most of my university days learning about the rich history of France. It was a treat for me.

But this blog isn’t going to talk about the deep history of France and all the beautiful travel locations. I don’t need to sell you on those because we all know how great they are.

I’m going to talk about something else instead

You see, coming from Canada, I speak a certain degree of broken French. I wouldn’t call myself fluent, but I am capable of communicating at a more than basic level.

All my life I had always been told that the French are rude and difficult to get along with.

That wasn’t the case for me

I met some of the nicest people I’ve ever met in France. The people there are wonderful and they will appreciate you if you make even the smallest effort to speak their language.

My time in Paris involved seeing many of the famous landmarks, walking along the Seine, checking out some of the city’s vibrant art scene, and of course, enjoying a glass of wine and good bread. Who could say no to that?

But my most fond memory will surprise you

I decided to rent a car and drive to the Normandy region instead of taking the train. If you plan to visit France, make Normandy one of your stops. It is beyond beautiful.

As I drove through the countryside, my phone ran out of data and my Google Maps stopped working. I was lost on my way to meet with a family friend who lived in the region.

It didn’t look good

At some point, I ended up in a small French town, unsure of what to do. I put the car in park and approached a young woman and her children as they were tidying up the front of their house.

In my broken French, I explained my situation and asked them if I could use their WiFi to figure out where I was.

I never expected this to happen

The mother invited me inside of her house, offered me a meal, a Coca Cola, and whatever else I wanted. She saw us as royalty.

Do you want to know why?

She was so proud to have a Canadian in her house. To her, it was an honor and she gushed about the opportunity to share such a story with her friends.

As it turns out, the French still have a deep love for Canada and what they did for the country during World War II. The war may be long over, but the memories still exist.

It was that little moment in a small French town that made the trip form me. I will never forget it. That tiny act of hospitality made me realize the joys of travel and meeting new people.

Here’s the thing…

It changed the way I view travelling. Sure, I love to visit a country and experience its landmarks. That desire hasn’t changed.

But now my priority is to meet new people and to create little memories like the one I described above. It’s the human experience and the little interactions that make travelling so amazing.

I did so much in France while I was there, but it is that tiny memory in a rural French town that will live on with me forever.

You have to break out of your shell

The next time you travel, make an effort to speak a foreign language, to talk to people, and to learn a little bit about their life stories.

Travel is a wonderful thing and a great change to build a better you. The world is a big place and there are a lot of opportunities out there.

What are you waiting for?

As Canadians, we are lucky. Our passport is the gold standard and it allows us to travel with ease.

So make use of it. I challenge you to pack your bags, order your ticket, and start stamping that passport. Create your own memories in a tiny French town.

Happy travelling.

Eric Carriere

Founder of WriteOn

 

4 Common Luggage Problems You Need to Know About

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You know what really sucks? Low quality luggage.

We’ve all experienced it at some point in our life.

There’s one thing you need to know

Baggage handlers will not treat your luggage with the love and respect it deserves. In a world where fragile stickers are simply a challenge to them, it is a given that your luggage will be tossed in its journey.

Sadly, this is the mark of death for cheap luggage.

If you are in the market for a new set of luggage, there are several common problems you will want to be aware of before you make a big purchase.

  1. Broken Wheels

Wouldn’t it be great if luggage wheels lasted forever?

Well they don’t because very few things can survive being thrown over and over. Even the best luggage will break eventually.

Luggage wheels are often the first thing to break because of how vulnerable they are to the harassment they face at an airport.

Some luggage wheels are detachable and can be replaced. If this is the case for you, go for it.

If you are ready to move on – check out a Trochi luggage. We’ve worked hard to design a better wheel that is capable of surviving even the most frenzies baggage handlers.

Always shop for quality. A high-quality luggage will survive longer than its cheaper counterpart.

Think of it like this

Would you rather buy one $300 luggage that lasts for years, or replace a $100 luggage yearly? The answer is pretty obvious.

  1. Broken Handles

We wish that luggage handles would last forever, but they usually don’t.

Most companies cheap out on the hardware, resulting in a flimsy handle that breaks after a few luggage tosses.

There isn’t much you can do to avoid this other than taking extra steps to try and protect your handle after you check it in.

A common solution to this problem is to wrap your luggage in plastic to tightly lock all of its components into place.

Here’s what we suggest.

Just buy a better luggage in the first place. The last place you should be shopping for luggage is on AliExpress or a thrift store. Sure, you may get it for cheap, but cheap breaks and will cost you more in the long run.

  1. Cracked Shell

Hard shell luggage is one of the most popular options today because of how well it protects your valuables.

But so many people make this mistake.

They automatically assume that all hard shells are created equally.

This is not the case.

In fact, some companies cheap out on the plastic so badly that they often crack after a single use.

If you own a cracked hard shell, don’t bother trying to repair it. Cracked hard shell luggage lacks integrity and any repairs you make are only temporary. You don’t want your luggage to break during transit, that would be terrible. It’s always better to buy a new one

We love hard shell luggage here at Trochi, but we want you to be aware of what a cheap one looks and sounds like.

When shopping for a hard shell, tap the plastic and make sure that it isn’t completely hollow underneath. You want it to feel durable and to absorb the sound of your tapping.

  1. Shoddy Zippers

Have you ever tried to pull a zipper only to have it split open or get stuck?

It’s pretty frustrating, right?

Some luggage companies go all-out on durability, but make the mistake of using cheap zippers. Never buy a piece of luggage that has known zipper problems.

A shoddy zipper can rip open, spilling the contents of your luggage. Luggage with low quality zippers are also a lot easier to steal from.

This was a problem that we encountered time and time again.

Luggage needs to be designed with the user in mind. We get it, you want to jam that last piece of clothing in before leaving.

So, here’s what we did

We created a durable, double-layered zipper that comes standard on a Trochi. This zipper can be tugged, pulled, and pushed. It’s a tough one and it will survive whatever you can throw at it (within reason). Let’s be real, it wouldn’t survive a chainsaw or something equally destructive.

Oh yea, one more thing

Our zipper is theft proof too.

How?

The double-layer system makes it difficult to penetrate. Sharp objects aren’t able to penetrate through it, keeping your valuables safe and out of the hands of the wrong people.

Combine that with our TSA-approved lock and you have one safe piece of luggage.

Knowing is half the battle

We want you to find the best luggage possible for your travels.

Here at Trochi, we built the luggage that we want to travel with. Who wants to worry about broken wheels, handles, cracked hard shells, and low-quality zippers? We didn’t.

Your luggage is supposed to be a tool that makes your travel easier – not a problem. Let’s make travel better, one flight at a time.

Safe travels,

Trochi

6 Things to Look for When Choosing Your Next Luggage

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How would you like to see the world without any of the bad parts of travel?

Does this sound too good to be true?

It doesn’t have to.

Traveling is one of the most rewarding experiences. But with travel comes the need to bust out your luggage and survive the stress-test that is the modern airport.

Let me guess, it’s been years since you’ve purchased a luggage and your current one has seen better days.

Don’t panic, this is normal.

If you are in the market for a new luggage, there are several things you need to consider.

  • What size and weight do you want?
  • Do you need it to have specific features?
  • What material do you want it to be made from?
  • How much do you value safety features?
  • How much do you want to spend on it?

It is important to think about these things. A good luggage will save you a lot of headaches when you travel.

Unless you like downing Tylenol by the bottle, here are a few things we recommend you look for when it comes to buying your next luggage.

  1. Wheels

The days of standard one-direction wheels are over. Your luggage should follow you wherever you go with ease. It shouldn’t have to be dragged along violently.

Always check out the wheels of any luggage that you are looking at. The best luggage will come with wheels that are multi-directional like the ones we put on every Trochi.

You don’t want to be like Bob.

Bob is the guy with a luggage that is older than the plane he is flying on. He can easily be spotted at an airport struggling to drag his luggage up an escalator. His luggage is so old that as it rolls you can hear the wheels clicking and grinding. Don’t be like Bob.

  1. Theftproof

Airports are busy places. Even with the amount of security at an airport, your valuables are always in the sights of unsavory characters.

The best way to protect your goods is to look for luggage with a durable material that is resistant to punctures and rips.

Here’s how we solved this problem

Trochi luggage comes with a double-layered theftproof zipper that is resistant to punctures. We also include a TSA-approved lock that requires a 3-digit password to open.

Traveling should be fun, but having your laptop stolen at the airport is the farthest thing from fun.

  1. Size and Weight

Luggage comes in many shapes and sizes.

Think of luggage shopping like clothes shopping.

You wouldn’t purchase an XL sweater if you are a small or medium, would you?

Bigger isn’t always better. It is important that you understand what you want to do while traveling and what you need to bring with you.

Think about it like this…

If you are traveling casually, a medium sized luggage may be best for you. A professional photographer will want a larger and more durable luggage to hold all of their equipment. While a smaller person will not want to lug around an XL luggage.

You also have to be aware of luggage limits. If you are flying internationally, you can usually bring 2 large luggage with you, but domestic flights are usually capped at smaller luggage sizes and weights.

The most common size of luggage includes:

  • 18-20” International Carryon
  • 21-22” Domestic Carryon
  • 23-24” Medium Checked
  • 25-27” Large Checked
  • 28-32” Extra Large Checked

Bigger may seem better – but that extra space will quickly turn into extra weight and put you over your cap.

The best thing you can do is pick a luggage that has enough space for all your belongings and enough extra space for a few souvenirs.

  1. Internal Storage

Traveling gets messy fast. This is why internal storage is another important thing to consider when looking for a new luggage.

Trust me on this.

You don’t want your luggage to look like your dirty laundry pile.

It is easy to lose things as you travel between places. Staying organized is essential and will help you stay ahead of the game.

When searching for luggage, make sure it has isolated pockets with zippers, pouches to separate things like your toiletries, valuables, dirty and clean clothes, and compartments for quick storage.

As a rule of thumb, if you value security, you want all of these pockets and zippers to be located inside of the luggage. This will reduce the chance that something gets stolen.

  1. Material

There is a great debate in the world of luggage.

Soft vs. hard shell.

Here’s what we think.

Soft shell luggage is fine, but is best suited as a carryon. The soft material makes it great for stuffing into an overhead compartment.

In comparison, a hard shell is best used as a checked luggage because it can withstand being tossed around by baggage handlers that will show your luggage no love.

  1. Handles

The last major thing to consider when it comes to luggage is the quality of the handle.

Like wheels, handles are usually the first thing to go on your luggage.

When you are looking at luggage, make sure the handle is durable and firm.

Your luggage will face a lot of abuse at an airport throughout its life, so the last thing you want is to buy one with a weak handle that will break after a few flights.

Don’t be afraid to give the handle a good shake and practice walking around with it if you are in a store.

What if you could have all of this and more?

You read that right.

We’ve travelled through many airports and learned what makes a good luggage.

If you want a luggage that has travelled the world and survived, Trochi is the choice.

Style and durability can coexist and all of the features we listed above come standard on a Trochi.

Regardless of what you choose, travel safely out there and make sure to pick a luggage that suits your travel plans. Don’t settle for something that will make your travel experience stressful.

Safe travels,

Trochi