The Most Annoying Airline Passenger Is …

The results are in. Out of all the bad behaviors, from boozing it up to bad parenting to excessive chatting and being a stinky seat mate, one draws the most ire: rear seat kicking.

According to a study released on Tuesday by travel giant Expedia, rear seat kickers are the most annoying airline passenger – a dubious distinction they’ve now earned for the third year in a row.

They beat out inattentive parents, ‘aromatic’ passengers, seat recliners and more in the fourth annual Expedia Airplane Etiquette Study. The survey was based on feedback from just over 1,000 Americans aged over 18. John Morrey,’s vice president and general manager, said in a press release:

As we embark on 2017, millions and millions of people will be taking to the air this year, and should know that there’s no better gift you can give to a fellow traveler than respect and generosity. The Airplane Etiquette study shows that small acts of decorum can go a long way. After all, as it relates to flights, we are quite literally all in this together.

The Stats

The “Rear Seat Kicker” was outed as the most aggravating passenger by 64 per cent of Americans, beating out “Inattentive Parents” (59 per cent), those who were defined as “parents who have no control over, or pay no attention to, their crying, whining or misbehaved children.”

Those with bad hygiene or who had drenched themselves in perfume or cologne, dubbed “Aromatic” passengers, were the third least-liked, drawing 55 per cent of the vote. The “Audio Insensitive” (a passenger who listens to their music or talks loudly) and the “Boozer”, that person who is drunk and disruptive on a flight, were next, with 49 per cent of survey respondents nominating them as annoying.

The neighbor who strikes up an uninvited conversation with their seat mate and won’t stop was also maligned, frustrating 40 per cent of fliers.

But while the survey found plenty of contempt for bad behavior, many people were reluctant to put the kibosh on it. It found 62 per cent wouldn’t handle an issue directly themselves, preferring a flight attendant to sort out the issue. But a whopping 33 per cent of respondents said they would simply endure the behavior in silence.

One in ten respondents would “confront a misbehaving passenger directly,” while 13 percent would record the offending behavior via their phone camera. And five percent would turn to social media: 3 percent would “shame a fellow passenger’s behavior via social channels,” while 2 percent would simply “tweet about it”.

But it’s not all bad news

The survey also found 79 per cent feel that fellow passengers are generally considerate of one another. It also found not all behavior onboard was bad, with four in 10 fliers reporting having helped another passenger with luggage. Also, 28 per cent said they had offered up their seat to someone else.

Why are people so badly behaved on planes?

Dale Archer, M.D., a clinical psychiatrist and the author of Better Than Normal: How What Makes You Different Can Make You Exceptional, explains in this blog in Psychology Today:

Simple, we are becoming a nation of rude narcissists. Basic, decent behavior has been lost with day-to-day living in a smartphone, computer screen world where reality stars serve as role models. The sense of entitlement and privilege is exemplified by the thought: “I want to do what I want, when I want…. and I will!”

Now we know who are the most annoying plane passengers, and what drives some of their behavior, the bigger question is: how do you deal with them? As much as you’d like to just jam your seat back suddenly during meal time and “accidentally” knock over their juice and sandwich, that’s not the best approach.

The first thing you should do is talk to a flight attendant. Don’t sit there in silence. Remember, you also have a right to enjoy your flight. See if it’s possible to be moved to a different seat. If that’s not possible, hopefully the passenger has taken some advice from the flight attendant. If not, all you can do is keep your cool. You’ll have to stay seat mates with the offending passenger. Take the high road, try to defuse the situation and don’t make it worse. Remember, this situation isn’t forever and you’ll soon be off the plane.

Annoying passenger rankings

The full list of aggravating passenger behavior according to the Expedia study*:

  1. The Rear Seat Kicker (cited by 64 per cent of respondents)
  2. Inattentive Parents (59 per cent)
  3. The Aromatic Passenger (55 per cent)
  4. The Audio Insensitive (49 per cent)
  5. The Boozer (49 per cent)
  6. Chatty Cathy (40 per cent)
  7. The Queue Jumper (35 per cent)
  8. Seat-Back Guy (35 per cent)
  9. The Armrest Hog (34 per cent)
  10. Pungent Foodies (30 per cent)
  11. The Undresser (28 per cent)
  12. The Amorous (28 per cent)
  13. The Mad Bladder (22 per cent)
  14. The Single and Ready to Mingle (18 per cent)

The study was commissioned by Expedia and carried out by GfK, an independent global market research company.

* Survey respondents were given the option of choosing more than one answer.

What do you think of this study? Is the Rear Seat Kicker the most annoying flyer? Perhaps you think other flyers like the Inattentive Parents or the The Boozer are worse? Let us know your thoughts and comments below. If you enjoyed this story, please share.

Easy Solution to Call Customer Care Centers of Your Favorite Brands

With growing dependencies upon various devices and the online purchase facilities, modern day people have to depend on the customer service teams extensively. However, how draining is it as a task to successfully put a query is not hidden to anyone.A contemporary human is too dependent upon various technologies and services.

Especially, since the emergence of the e-commerce or online purchasing facilities, such dependencies have grown a lot. On the other hand, it’s a fact at the same time that more are the products, more service center numbers one has to remember or note down.

No doubt, remembering such numbers is one of the daunting tasks possible on the earth. Some might claim that as most of the products or brands come with their own customer support calling app, one doesn’t need to remember all these numbers. But, how many apps would one install on his device?

It won’t be wrong to claim that starting from toilet cleaning to set-up box repair, modern day human is dependent upon the individual service providers for almost every service. And, installing one app for all these might slow down the device itself. On this context, how would it be to have a single app with the facility to access a whole range of customer service providers from a single point!

Good news is that the modern day technology has well understood the need of a single platform to access a whole range of customer services from anywhere, anytime, through fingertip.

It’s not all about remembering too many numbers or installing a plethora of apps. Rather, wastage of time is one of the prime concerns behind making customer queries through the phone.

Undoubtedly, most of the companies offer toll-free numbers to connect with their customer care number. But, one needs immense patience, and a bit of luck as well, prior deciding to call toll free number helpline.

Sometimes you might have to wait for long hours for your call to connect, and the other times the processing of such calls from one department to the others consume too much of your valuable time.

Well, the good days are back for the android and iOS users. Apps have been developed for these users that can act as a complete platform to access all their customer care number from one point, anytime, anywhere.

Moreover, they can schedule a call as per their convenience. Through the process, the customer care team will call them only on their scheduled time. In short, you don’t need to wait for those hectic processes of staying in line or the delays.

The only assured part about the customer care facility is the toll-free number helpline. Otherwise, nothing else remains under the control of the customer/caller. You can never guarantee that your call will be processed, or your queries will be solved at the first attempt itself.

You keep on calling through the toll-free numbers, and it keeps on putting you on a wait. Though it doesn’t cost you money, it does cost your time that is more valuable.

Even if it gets connected, there is no guarantee for your query to be completed. These processes involve various steps or formalities; you will have to connect with various other links. Mistakenly even, if your call is disconnected anyway, you do have to repeat the entire process.

It’s a fact that many companies or service providers are coming with free customer care calling app facilities. But, through such apps, one can connect with the customer care of only the concerned company.

On this context, with growing private service dependencies of modern day humans, it’s not really a suitable option to install so many apps.

It’s not even a favorable suggestion to remember all these helpline support numbers; it might be a complete book itself. In short, the only option remained is to have an app that can offer the facility of connecting with all the customer support teams.

Interesting here is to mention that the apps have been already developed, through which one can handle all his/her customer care affairs. These apps are like a complete directory of all brands and their customer care numbers.

You can connect with any of the customer service team, anytime, from the directory itself. The best part, one can schedule a call as per his/her suitability with any customer support brand he/she wishes.

It means you don’t need to go through that hectic processing or call waits. Especially, these apps are currently available for iOS and android platforms.

Moreover, they can schedule a call as per their convenience. Through the process, the customer care team will call them only on their scheduled time. In short, you don’t need to wait for those hectic processes of staying in line or the delays.

The only assured part about the customer care facility is the toll-free number helpline. Otherwise, nothing else remains under the control of the customer/caller. You can never guarantee that your call will be processed, or your queries will be solved at the first attempt itself.

You keep on calling through the toll-free numbers, and it keeps on putting you on a wait. Though it doesn’t cost you money, it does cost your time that is more valuable.

Even if it gets connected, there is no guarantee for your query to be completed. These processes involve various steps or formalities; you will have to connect with various other links. Mistakenly even, if your call is disconnected anyway, you do have to repeat the entire process.

It’s a fact that many companies or service providers are coming with free customer care calling app facilities. But, through such apps, one can connect with the customer care of only the concerned company.

On this context, with growing private service dependencies of modern day humans, it’s not really a suitable option to install so many apps.

It’s not even a favorable suggestion to remember all these helpline support numbers; it might be a complete book itself. In short, the only option remained is to have an app that can offer the facility of connecting with all the customer support teams.

Interesting here is to mention that the apps have been already developed, through which one can handle all his/her customer care affairs. These apps are like a complete directory of all brands and their customer care numbers.

You can connect with any of the customer service team, anytime, from the directory itself. The best part, one can schedule a call as per his/her suitability with any customer support brand he/she wishes.

It means you don’t need to go through that hectic processing or call waits. Especially, these apps are currently available for iOS and android platforms.

Low Calorie Recipes You Should Add To Your Diet

The Mediterranean Diet is rich in olive oil recipes. Consumption of the natural oil has been considered to be one of the reasons behind the rich health of the people of the region for centuries. The health benefits of olive oil have been studied and scientifically established within the last century. It is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids that help in improving hearth health by reducing bad cholesterol. It has high levels of antioxidants that help improve your health in many ways. Consuming food containing olive oil can help in preventing cancers, improve diabetes, help with weight loss, and fight inflammation.

Here are 3 easy-to-prepare recipes that you can prepare and relish the health benefits of this oil.

1. Shaved Brussels Sprouts, Pecorino & Olive Oil

If you are looking for healthy low calorie recipes packed with lots of nutrients, this is the perfect choice. You will need the following ingredients to prepare this dish:

  • Extra virgin olive oil – 5 tablespoon
  • Brussels sprouts – 450 g
  • Lemon juice – 3.5 tablespoon
  • Salt – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Pecorino cheese (shaved/grated) – 115 g
  • Crushed peppercorns – 1/2 or 1 teaspoon

Cut the Brussels sprouts in half and slice thinly and transfer to a large serving bowl. Drizzle olive oil over it and sprinkle salt. Toss the mix before adding pepper and lemon juice. Toss it again and then place the cheese on top before serving.

2. Crisp Rosemary & Olive Oil Flatbread

If you are looking for easy-to-make healthy recipes containing olive oil, this is a must-have flatbread in your list. Your will need the following ingredients:

  • Extra virgin Olive oil – 75 ml (a little extra for brushing)
  • Plain flour – 1 cup
  • Rosemary (chopped) – 1 tablespoon (and 2 sprigs)
  • Bicarbonate of soda – 1 teaspoon
  • Salt – 3/4 teaspoon
  • Water – 125 ml

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Mix the rosemary, flour, salt, and bicarbonate of soda while stirring them into a medium bowl. Create a well in the center and pour in the water and olive oil while stirring with a wood spoon. Keep stirring to make dough. Break it into 3 pieces. Roll out one piece on a baking paper sheet to create a round. Cover the other two using clingfilm. Brush some olive oil on top, scatter some rosemary, sprinkle salt, and bake in the oven. Once they turn pale gold with brown spots, remove to a rack for cooling. Repeat with the other rounds and your low calorie recipes will be ready.

3. Low-Calorie Prawn Shell-Veggie Broth

This is one of the best olive oil recipes you would want to enjoy on a cold evening with friends and family. It requires the following ingredients:

  • Olive Oil extra light – 50 ml
  • Prawn shells – 220 g
  • Prawns – 50 g
  • Squid – 20 g
  • Sea bass – 50 g
  • Bayleaf – 1
  • Tomatoes – 50 g

Some of the other ingredients you should add include onion, garlic, black pepper corns, carrot, basil, leeks, salt and celery. Roast the prawn shells for around 20 minutes after cleaning them. Saute mirepoix before adding the shells. Then saute the garlic and onion in another pan and add the tomatoes (diced), bay leaf, fennel, pepper corns, and the stock (shells and sautéed mirepoix). Allow it to cook and then add saffron strands and seafood. Season and serve hot. This is one of the healthiest olive oil recipes you can prepare.

Olive oil is cherished the world over for its endless health benefits. If you want to enjoy its health benefits, make sure to add these low calorie recipes to your regular diet. The more you include this oil into your diet, the closer you will be able to get to the Mediterranean Diet.

By discovering low-calorie recipes, you can make the most of your health. The cooking oil plays a major role in this context.

To roast vegetables, you can use healthy cooking oil. Olive oil has great prospects in this direction. There are various grades of oils which include extra virgin olive oil, Olive oil-extra light and pomace olive oil. Extra virgin olive oil is the costliest and the purest form of olive oil. On the other hand, pomace olive oil is the most cost-effective option.

By using natural olive oil, recipes that delight your appetite can be prepared. You can prepare food items with greens and vegetables so that it will not be difficult anymore to feed your kids. Strong flavors can be managed by using the olive oil.

Mother of the Bride Responsibilities

There is something about their little girl getting hitched that can have an exceptionally peculiar impact on a Mother of the Bride. Some assume control and demand orchestrating everything from the dress to the list of attendees, while others freeze at the prospect of being in the spotlight on your huge day.

The degree to which your mom is included in your wedding arrangements most likely relies on upon the kind of relationship you have with her, and the age at which you are getting hitched. Many moms consider themselves to be the master at their little girl’s wedding, and the weight to arrange an incredible gathering can prompt to push and unlimited contentions.

Mother of the Bride 

Here are a couple tips on mother of the bride of the hour obligations to make your mom feel required in your wedding arrangements without letting her assume control totally:

Make her in charge of a particular undertaking

Settle on one part of your wedding that your mom can mastermind and settle on every one of the choices going to occupy her from meddling in whatever remains of your arrangements. Whether it is your solicitations, your blooms, or your cake, ensure it is something you don’t have solid sentiments about, generally giving your mom a chance to sort out it will worthy motivation more issues.

Discuss the list if people to attend at an opportune time

A few moms feel that they ought to be the ones to decide your wedding list of attendees, frequently including relatives and family companions, and barring your companions and associates. Request that your mom compose her optimal list if people to attend, keep in touch with one yourself, and after that take a seat to think about the two. Settle on a rundown of visitors you should welcome and after that attempt to bargain on the rest.

Mother of the Bride 

Solicit her recommendation each progression from the way

Talking to you about the wedding will help your mom to feel required in your game plans. Ask her assessment and exhortation on any issues you are having with your wedding arrangements and keep her upgraded on how the courses of action are advancing.

Include her in the financial plan on the off chance that she is paying

In the event that you are adhering to custom and your family are paying for the wedding, you will need to include them in how their cash is being spent. Draw up a financial plan from the get-go and talk through it with them. Fill them in regarding whether you are going over spending plan on specific things, and talk about approaches to lessen your spending in different zones to adjust.

Appreciate her outfit

Aside from the dress she wore to her own wedding, the mother of the bride of the hour outfit will be the most essential outfit she has ever purchased. Take an entire day, or even an end of the week away to run shopping with her, and help her discover something that will make her vibe certain and glitzy on the day.

Mother of the Bride

She doesn’t need to wear indistinguishable shading from the bridesmaids, yet ensure her outfit supplements the shading plan of the wedding as she will be in a considerable measure of photographs with the wedding party. Many moms are enticed to take a stab at something they wouldn’t generally wear; however adhering to an outfit they are agreeable in will permit them to appreciate the huge day without agonizing over their appearance.

Figure out how to state bless your heart

Whether you give your mom blooms on the big day, or a little thank you blessing at your practice supper, figuring out how to state thank you will demonstrate her amount you value the exertion she has put into your wedding.

A little girl’s wedding can be an extremely unpleasant time for a mother, regardless of the possibility that she is not assuming full liability for the plans, so make certain to give her knows you a chance to esteem her commitment.

I’m the unequivocal sort. Demonstrate me two arrangements of about indistinguishable straight dark jeans and I’ll generally know which combine to wear.

Presently, as

 of the hour, it’s not all that simple. Here we are, Wedding Day short six months, and I am the main individual in the wedding party who truly has nothing to wear.

The next big thing in Travel and Hospitality industry

Backed by the present growth momentum, both the travel and hospitality industry are heading strong. Despite pent-up demand, it is necessary for these industries to leverage technology to respond to the newer competition forms more effectively. People love vacationing, exploring new places and experiencing life from another perspective. However, they worry about what is happening at home. Consider travel companies using connected home technology to provide their clientele peace of mind. Innovations could greatly help provide this service to customers anywhere. The emerging technology innovations in travel and hospitality have the potential of revolutionizing how people interact with technology. The goal is to give companies a chance to tell their stories and offer readers insights to some of the most promising breakthroughs in the industry.

The dawn of human communication instigated fast progress and there is a simple reason for it. When people start to understand one another, they can share experiences and ideas and learn faster. Communication enabled developing complex concepts from simple ones. IoT or the Internet of Things is generating a lot of excitement nowadays. This would be the birth of an entirely new era of communication, which is communication between devices. Almost every industry that exists today will be altered in some way by IoT, which include the travel and hospitality industry. 

The Internet of Things creates an environment wherein devices could be assigned IP addresses and communicate with one another via sending and receiving information in the form of low energy transmission. Taking into consideration the number of devices used in a hotel every day, it is easy to see the reason why hoteliers are very excited about the possibilities. IoT could optimize the performance of the travel and hospitality sector. It enables automating even infrequent happenings in the industry such as for instance, malfunctioning heater, could detect abnormalities in power usage and sending maintenance request.

In the travel sector, regardless if it is to keep track of airline engines performance, enabling entry to hotel rooms without key or helping tourists find their way around, IoT is making exciting opportunities. By connecting smart systems, devices, processes and people in new methods, it is simplifying the back-end operations of hotels, airlines, resorts, rental car fleets and cruise lines. As technology becomes more powerful and cheaper, much of the innovation has changed toward allowing smart devices to communicate with each other and with bigger systems. A lot of travel and hospitality brands have some Internet of Things functionality already in their back-end operations and experimenting ways of putting technology to work for the customers. With the possibility to transform almost all aspects of the travel experience, IoT would enable the organizations to collect and incorporate huge sets of data from various sources and personalize travel experiences instantly.

As the industry is under constant pressure to provide better service and at the lowest cost possible, they have been early movers with the Internet of Things. The industry has topped the list in terms of current IoT spending for every company. Executives all over the globe expect their organizations to spend $128.9 million on average on IoT initiatives.

While almost all kinds of travel businesses are likely to benefit from the Internet of Things to some degree, bigger hotel chains as well as airlines lead the charge out of the gate. On the enterprise perspective, most have IoT systems already to boost efficiency and simplify operations. Hotels manage the use and maintenance of their ventilation, heating and air conditioning, plumbing, security, elevator and other systems that are facilities-related. Airline companies employ sensors for gathering information in real-time from aircraft parts and systems used for flight data tracking, optimizing consumption of fuel and anticipating maintenance concerns.

Hotels are always looking for new ways to boost their resource utilization. The Internet of Things takes this to an entirely new level via enabling the management of several other crucial operations that previously could not be effectively monitored, like energy and power consumption. These two areas are where hoteliers have struggled always to keep their costs under control. IoT could create a massive breakthrough here. Each and every device would have a one-of-a-kind IP address, feeding information about the energy consumption to the respective servers, while incorporating with other devices, including activity monitors and motion sensors. The system would turn off air conditioning, lighting and other utilities that are not necessary intelligently, enabling hotels to cut down on consumption of energy.

The new and disruptive technologies in the travel and hospitality provided ease of operations as well as provide customers with comfort and peace of mind as they travel. With the confluence of global expansion, disruptive and emerging technologies, and a fast-expanding population, it is clear that the coming years would be very different for the sector.

Is Your Mobile Marketing Strategy Prepped for 2017?

If you haven’t already started implementing a mobile marketing strategy, then this is definitely the year you need to start. Putting together such strategies is seamless when you have an internet marketing agency on your team.

Mobile devices are taking over the digital realm, which means all brands need to have a content and advertising plan that revolves around mobile marketing. Data shows that people in America are spending more than 10 hours daily on their smartphones. That’s a whole lot of time, which is great news for brands with mobile marketing strategies in the works.

The chances of your ads and content being seen by prospects increases substantially when they are designed responsively. This means your content will display on any device your prospects and customers are using. This is highly essential because most people today are shopping on their phones, as well as looking for businesses like yours.

This shift from desktops to mobile occurred pretty swiftly, which is why many brands are quickly adopting mobile ads as part of their efforts. Stats show that brands are planning to spend 40 percent more on mobile ads in 2017. This is a 38 percent increase from the year 2015.

However, simply buying mobile ads isn’t going to guarantee you the results you’re looking for. You need to master the art of mobile marketing or leverage the expertise of a PPC management company or internet marketing agency in your area.

Ensure Your Ads Are Relevant

Most people keep their smartphones on all day and within arms reach at all times. Because of this personal attachment, it’s important for brands to be sensitive about the ads they push out. All of your mobile ads should be highly relevant to the audience they’re aimed at. They should also be interesting and valuable. Stay away from the old and ineffective methods of bombarding your audience with multiple flashy ads.

Design Unique Campaigns Centered Around Your Customers

If you haven’t already done it, you need to have customer personas created to help you identify with your target audience. If this is too much for you to do, you can always hire an internet marketing agency to do the heavy lifting. You never want to just write ads and post them. Each campaign you create should speak directly to your different customers. This type of personalization will help customers connect with your ads, increasing chances of them clicking on them.

Make Ads for Mobile Screens

Your advertisements should be mobile friendly, so those using tablets and smartphones can easily view them. The page and website your ads drive traffic to should also contain a responsive design. A responsive web design is better because it will allow both mobile and desktop users to view your content with no problems. A desktop-only or mobile-only design will only work against your efforts.

Just make sure the ads you create can be easily read on a mobile device, such as a smartphone. The small screen size can muddle the text if it’s not legible enough. Double check this on your own device as you’re designing them.

Consider Using Native Ads

Today’s consumers are conditioned to ignore ads, which can make marketing to them even harder. One way to work around this issue is to use native advertising. This is when you create ads that don’t really look like ads, and instead blend in with the site. Non-native ads stick out like a sore thumb and are oftentimes ignored by users.

Native ads are designed to have the same colors and font as the rest of the site, so it blends right in. To make your ad even more convincing, you need to ensure the content is valuable and relevant, so people will click on it. Use images to draw in their attention and great information they can obtain for free.

Create a Mobile App

Another way you can use mobile marketing to your advantage is to have an internet marketing agency create a mobile app for your business. This too should be relevant to your audience and only created if it would be a useful addition to their long list of other smartphone apps. In other words, don’t create an app just for the sake of doing it. 

Step-By-Step Guide to Hiring a Local Remodeling Contractor

Putting together a plan for a kitchen or bathroom remodel can be hard, especially if this is your first run at it. There are a lot of details involved, which is why it’s so important to look for remodeling contractors in Los Angeles who are experienced in kitchen and bath renovations. Going through the process of hiring a contractor takes some careful consideration.

This is why we put together this quick guide to help you along. You can use this as a checklist as you’re searching for a contractor to perform kitchen remodeling in your Los Angeles or Woodland Hills home.

Determine Exactly What You Want Done

In order to find the best contractor, you need to first determine what you want done to your home. If you’re interested in having exterior remodeling done, then you wouldn’t want to hire a Woodland Hills contractor who specializes in bathroom remodeling. It’s always better to go with a specialist who has many years of experience performing jobs like the one you want done.

Begin Doing Research

Once you have an idea of what you want done to your Los Angeles home, you can start looking for remodeling contractors. The very first thing you should check is whether the contractor is licensed, bonded and insured. The last thing you need is to hire a so-called professional who performs a mediocre job, or worse, who causes damage that you end up having to pay for.

This is also the time to interview the contractor. Find out how many years they’ve been in business and whether they have a portfolio of projects to showcase that are similar to yours. Next, ask for referrals from recent customers, so you can evaluate their professionalism from the viewpoint of a customer.

Pay close attention to how the contractors act over the phone and in person. Are they courteous? Do they answer all of your questions?

Breaking Down the Project

Now, it’s time to go into further details regarding your home remodeling project. Here, you want to determine whether the contractor will provide you with a detailed contract and quote, so you know exactly what will be done and at what cost.

Find out what forms of payment are accepted and whether they require 50% down and 50% upon completion or submitted in intervals throughout the project. If you need financing and/or a flexible payment plan, then make sure to make this known upfront.

Going Over Rates

After you’ve determined the scope of your home renovation, it’s time to go over the pricing. Most remodeling contractors in Los Angeles aren’t willing to negotiate their estimates, but others are willing to offer financing packages. In this case, find out what the terms are and whether there’s a sizable down payment required.

Make sure to ask questions regarding the estimate, so you understand all of the costs. This will help you find the best deal. Also, keep in mind that the cheapest quote isn’t always the best one. Take into account everything you’ve learned about the contractor – their professionalism, reputation, past work and estimate.

If your project requires electrical and/or plumbing work, then expect to pay more money for electricians and plumbers to complete the task.

Draw Up the Contract

Now that you’ve pinpointed the contractor you want to work with, you can have the contract drawn up by their personnel. It’s very important to read over the contract to ensure you agree with all of the terms. If there’s anything included that is wrong or you’re unsure about, make sure to ask about it. The contractor should square away any issues or clarify any gray areas in the agreement. The contract should include details about financing, payment schedule, project schedule, names of contractors and suppliers, warranties and termination clause.

During and After the Project

The contractor you hire should keep you in the loop every step of the way. Prepare your family for the disruptions that may occur due to the project. Once the job is complete, make sure to keep copies of warranties, just in case. If any issues arise, contact the appropriate numbers to have it corrected.

Hiring a contractor shouldn’t be a troublesome ordeal. Use this simple guide to help you along the process, so you can finally get the kitchen or bathroom remodel of your dreams! 

Buyer's Guide to Buying Eco-Friendly Kitchen Countertops

Finding eco-friendly materials to use in your kitchen remodel shouldn’t be a hassle. If anything, it should be a breeze. The hardest part about choosing eco-friendly products isn’t the difficulty in finding them, but deciphering which are the best. There are plenty of options for you to select from, which is great news if you have an idea of what you want. You can also consult with a kitchen remodeling expert in Woodland Hills to learn more about the green market.

When it comes to countertops, you have a variety of materials to choose from, including stainless steel, butcher blocks, concrete and recycled glass. The key to finding the right countertop for your kitchen comes down to the style you desire and your budget.

Here is a guide we put together to help give you a better understanding of the different countertops out there.

Concrete Counters

This is an unusual, but not uncommon choice for homeowners. Concrete is typically reserved for driveways, walkways and other outdoor projects, but now it’s being included in kitchen remodeling jobs in Woodland Hills and beyond. What’s great about concrete, other than its eco-friendliness, is its beauty and brawns. It’s a tough slab to crack and can be quite attractive. There are various colors, stains, textures and sizes to choose from, so concrete is very customizable. Just make sure to have it properly sealed to prevent stains. Concrete slabs can last a very long time when they are cleaned and waxed regularly.

The cost for concrete counters can range between $60 and $75 per square foot. However, you can sometimes find deals from general contractors in Los Angeles who have connections with counter manufacturers.

Butcher Block Counters

Butcher block counters are quite popular in kitchens where homeowners enjoy cooking a lot. It’s nothing new, and has actually been used for centuries across the world. This type of counter can add charm and warmth to your kitchen design. It’s made of long, rectangular pieces of wood that have been glued together to create the slab. You can find butcher blocks that have end grain, flat grain or end grain. There are various types of wood that can be used for these slabs, but the most common is maple because of its hardness and durability.

Butcher blocks can cost anywhere from $50 to $100 per square foot, making it ideal for smaller kitchens or those with a larger budget.

Stainless Steel Counters

In the past, you would normally find stainless steel counters inside restaurant kitchens, but today, you will see them popping up in residential kitchen remodeling projects throughout Woodland Hills. What makes it attractive is its sleek, clean look. It is nonporous, so it’s easy to keep clean and requires little maintenance. The durability of these counters is also impeccable. Those who enjoy cooking hot meals love the fact it’s resistant to heat and stains.

The cost for stainless steel counters can run you between $45 and $65 per square foot, making it more affordable than other options out there.

Recycled Glass Counters

This too is durable and frequently used in home remodeling projects in Los Angeles. It’s eco-friendly and it’s amazing to look at. These counters are made with post-consumer recycled glass blended with resin and cement binder to create a unique centerpiece for your kitchen. The color and size options are varying and customizable as well. You won’t have to worry about these counters being scratched by knives or scorched by heat either.

This is potentially the cheapest option for those looking for eco-friendly counters. You can find these at prices between $20 and $60.

Paper Composite Counters

If these materials don’t pique your interest, then maybe paper composite will. This is made with recycled paper. Just make sure the slabs are made with low VOC content. These are easy to keep clean and are durable. The downside is that the colors aren’t UV stable and the lighter colored varieties tend to show stains. Make sure to also keep knives and other sharp objects away from the surface, since it can be easily scratched. The cost starts at around $50 per square foot.

If you’re looking to have eco-friendly counters installed in your home, then it’s time to consult with a kitchen remodeling contractor in Woodland Hills!

Expert Tips for Improving Your Local SEO Strategy

Learning from the pros is the ultimate way to hone your own skills, especially when it comes to internet marketing. Even if you’re using an SEO agency to execute your online marketing strategies, knowing a thing or two about the industry is essential. This can be your way of analyzing whether the methods being used are any good. And if your campaigns are failing, you can have a better chance of pointing out whether it’s the fault of the agency.

In other words, knowing your stuff will help you to save money and ensure you’re getting the best quality services from the local SEO companies you decide to hire. A lot of people think search engine optimization is difficult to learn, but it’s quite simple (in theory).

The first thing you should know is that having an SEO strategy is essential today for the following reasons:

  • 93 percent of internet experiences start on Google (and other search engines)
  • 75 percent of users rarely go past the first page of search engine results
  • SEO continues to beat social media in driving traffic to content sites (by over 300 percent)

SEO is the number one traffic generator for content-based sites, so keep this in mind as you’re going forward with hiring an SEO agency in Los Angeles.

Now, let’s delve deeper into the tips that many of the experts give to the layman user.

Outsource Labor-Intensive Tasks

As a business owner, you don’t want to get caught up in the tasks that are labor-intensive. This includes search engine optimization. While this is a highly essential task, it takes up too much time to perform. You’re better off hiring a professional from an SEO agency to handle this for you. The pros about outsourcing is that it ensures the tasks are being done properly and it frees up your time to run your business. Too many brands think they can optimize their site themselves and end up with mediocre results.

Consider Creating Multiple Local Landing Pages

If your company caters to customers in different area codes, then you should consider making local landing pages for each city. Some brands shy away from this because it takes a lot of work. However, if you have an expert on your squad who can write the content, then this will be a breeze. Plus, creating local landing pages for each city will help drive in more traffic from those areas. It’s money you definitely don’t want to leave on the table!

Use Directory-Submission Services

Link building is crucial for search engine optimization. It can help boost your rankings in search engines and help drive in more traffic. One way to enhance your link building strategy is to take advantage of directory submission services. This takes a lot of manual time to complete, but again, you can hire an online marketing firm to do this for you.

Be Strategic About Your Domain Name

This tip can work for you if you’re still in the startup phase of your business and have yet to launch your site. The domain name you select for your business should be chosen strategically for optimization purposes. It should be something that’s easy to remember, relevant to your brand and simple to spell. Putting targeted keywords in your domain name no longer adds weight for boosting your ranking.

Focus On Generating High-Quality Content

Everything you post on your website and on behalf of your brand should be high-quality. This content should also be optimized with targeted keywords. Make sure to include photos in the content to make it more appealing to users and search engines. The photos should have alt tags as well. If you have testimonials or reviews, include these on your site. All products and services should have their own page complete with photos, tags, descriptions and categories.

The content written for readers should also be relevant and valuable to visitors. Choose topics that resonate with the concerns and problems your audience has. If you can provide insight, tips and other information, then your site will become a resource that generates a ton of traffic.

Optimizing your website for search engines takes more work than you think. Consult with a professional SEO agency to see how you can start ranking in search engines. 

Get to know the history of steam turbines

Steam turbines are not new now as they have been powering our world since decades. But did you know when was the first steam turbine made? But before jumping into that aspect, let’s know more about the steam turbines first.

A steam turbine generally refers to a mechanical device which is used to produce thermal energy using high pressure steam and convert it into rotary motion. Its modern demonstration was devised by Sir Charles Parsons in the year 1884.

In other words, this turbine system is a kind of thermal engine that gets much of its improvement in thermodynamics efficacy through the employment of various stages during the expansion of the steam. Over the years, there have been several changes that have taken place such as the replacement of reciprocating piston steam engine due to its higher thermal efficiency and greater power-to-weight ratio.


The first such device may be marked as a reaction steam turbine was not majorly different from a toy, named Aeolipile, described in the 1st century by Greek mathematician Alexandria in Roman Egypt. Almost 1000 years later, Spanish naval officer Blascode Garay devised a primeval steam machine to drive a ship in the port of Barcelona.

It was Sir Charles Parsons who was behind the invention of modern steam turbine and made it in 1884. His first model was connected to a dynamo that was able to produce 7.5kW of electricity. His invention paved the ways of cheaper and abundant electricity and transformed marine transport and naval warfare. He had licensed patent for his device and the turbine scaled-up soon after by an American, George Westinghouse. Another feature of that turbine was its scalability. It is great know to that during the entire life span of Parson, the electricity generation capacity of the device was scaled by about 10,000 times.

There was several other variations developed that work perfectly with steam. The de Laval turbine was made by Gustaf de Laval and fast-tracked the steam to optimum speed before running it against a turbine blade. Hence the turbine is simpler; cost-effective and does not need to be pressure-proof. It can easily work with any pressure of steam, but is noticeably less effective. It can easily work with any pressure of steam. Despite this it is noticeably less effective.

One of the great originators of the latest concept of gas and steam-based turbines was Aurel Stodola, a Slovak physicist, working as an engineer at Swiss Polytechnic Institute in Zurich. Aurel Stodola was one the greatest originators of the latest concept of steam and gas turbine. He was a Slovak. Apart from being a physicist and engineer, he offered his services as a professor at Swiss Polytechnic Institute in Zurich. His remarkable work was Die Dampfturbinen und ihreAussichtenals Wärmekraftmaschinen (The Steam Turbine and its standpoint as a Thermal Energy Machine) which was put out in Berlin in the year 1903. In 1922, in Berlin, he published another relevant book Dampf und Gas-Turbinen related to English Steam and Gas Turbines.

Small turbines are used to run compressors, pumps and shaft driven equipment whereas huge turbines are used to produce electricity. The range of the steam turbines varies from small to the largest capacities.

Turbine Efficiency

In order to optimize turbine efficiency the steam is expanded, producing work, in several stages. These states actually are considered by the way energy is derived from them and majorly known as impulse and reaction turbines. In majority of steam turbine solutions, a combination of impulse and reaction mechanisms are used. Though each stage performs as either one or the other, the entire turbine employs both the stages. In general terms, higher pressure sections are called impulse type while lower pressure stages are reaction type.

Impulse Turbines

This kind of steam turbine contains fixed nozzles that turn the flow of steam into high steam jets. Loaded with significant amount of kinetic energy, these jets enable the movement of rotor blades. A pressure drop takes place across only the inactive blades, with an overall rise in steam velocity across the stage.

When the steam traverses through the nozzle its pressure decreases from inlet pressure to the leaving pressure. Just because of this higher expansion steam ratio in the nozzle, the steam passes through it at an extremely high velocity.

Reaction Turbines

In this kind of reaction turbines, the rotor blades are made to build convergent nozzles. The reaction turbine employs the reaction force in the form of steam that accelerates through the nozzles created by the rotor. Steam is placed onto the rotor by the stationary fins of the stator. It then leaves the stator in the form of a jet that fills the entire circumference of the rotor. The steam then alters its direction and augments its speed in comparison to the speed of the blades. A pressure drop takes place between both the stator and the rotor, with steam fast-tracking through the stator and slowing near the rotor.

Due to their continuous operations and varying pay loads, turbine maintenance services play a vital role in keeping up the efficiency of these mechanical devices.

And it case of any trouble, there are steam turbine repair companies that provide round-the-clock support to power generating companies to ensure trouble-free operations.