Travel briefs: International tourism up, 50 places to get wed, overseas car buying


International tourist arrivals were up 4 percent in the first four months of 2015, according a new report from the United Nations World Tourism Organization.

The WTO said most regions experienced "strong growth" and that forecasts for May to August are "upbeat, with close to 500 million tourists expected to travel abroad during these four months."

The WTO report said there were some 332 million overnight visitors between January and April 2015, 16 million more than the same period last year.

The increase is part of a long-term trend. International tourist arrivals have been up 4.5 percent a year on average since 2010.

Oceania and South America experienced the strongest increases this year, both over 8 percent, followed by the Caribbean and Central and Eastern Europe, both more than 7 percent. The WTO said that "limited data" for January-April arrivals in Africa suggest a 6 percent decline there attributable to concern over Ebola.

The overall increase included 20 million U.S. tourists who traveled abroad in the first four months of this year, 7 percent more than during the same period last year.



Inspired by the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality, came up with a list of 50 places for destination weddings, one in each state, from Oak Island Estate in Wilsonville, Alabama, to Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

The choices range from traditional venues like the Thorncrown Chapel, Eureka Springs, Arkansas, to wild places like Cannon Beach in Oregon. Some involve activities — a windjammer cruise in Maine, a hot-air balloon ride in Albuquerque, New Mexico, while others suggest world-famous landmarks like the Empire State Building in New York City and Arizona's Grand Canyon, where the National Park Service offers several locations for small gatherings.

To click through the slideshow, visit .



New Volvo car buyers can get a trip to Scandinavia courtesy the Swedish car manufacturer.

If you order a new Volvo from a local dealer here, you can pick it up in Gothenburg, Sweden, or any official delivery location in Europe, and Volvo will throw in two round-trip tickets to Scandinavia, a hotel night in Gothenburg, Sweden, 15 days of European car insurance and shipment to your U.S. home dealer.

Details on the longstanding program at .

Several other companies have similar programs with overseas pick-up and U.S. delivery, including Mercedes and Audi.