These tourist hot spots are introducing entry fees and price hikes for 2024

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In travel news this week: Vacation love stories that began and ended in Paris or London, aviation misadventures in Thailand and China, plus a look at why prices are rising as tourist numbers increase.

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More and more tourist hot spots are introducing visitor caps and entry fees to prevent overcrowding - and, whaddya know, it gives their coffers a little boost, too.

There’s a new $13 charge for climbing Japan’s famous (and congested) Mount Fuji, which follows Japan’s 70% price hike for tourist rail passes. The weak yen, however, still makes this a good time for international visitors to make that bucket-list trip.

If you want to see the ornate – and exceedingly popular – Plaza de España square in Seville, Spain, expect to soon pony up an entry free. The Louvre art museum in Paris, home to the Mona Lisa, has raised ticket prices by almost a third, ahead of the Paris Olympics this summer.

It’s not just Europe and Asia, either. Walt Disney World Resort in Florida has already introduced higher park ticket prices for next year. Some of the lowest single-day, single-park ticket prices have gone up by $10 for 2025.

Love and loss in London and Paris

Way back in 1984, an Italian teenager arranged a date with a guy she met on a plane to London – but he was a no-show when she waited in Trafalgar Square the next day. Her eyes then fell on an American boy sitting between the bronze lions while reading “Romeo and Juliet.” The stars aligned - he was her future husband.

It was a different story for a Londoner in 2011 who made her first trip to Paris with her boyfriend. Her heart was broken under the Eiffel Tower, but then a decade later, she moved on from that – it was time to write her own ending.

Aviation incidents

A parrot, a tamarin monkey and an endangered red panda were among 87 animals found in luggage at a Bangkok airport this week. The suspected smugglers - and the captive creatures - had been headed for Mumbai.

And in China, a flight was delayed for more than four hours after a passenger threw coins into the engine. There have been similar incidents of coin throwing, apparently for “good luck,” in China in recent years.

Finally, there was a scary incident on board a United Airlines flight when a plane engine caught fire midair. Terrified passengers watched from the windows as flames broke out, forcing the plane to turn back around and land in Houston.

La dolce vita

An Australian woman moved to Lazio, Italy, and bought a palazzo for $130,000. She was looking for a fresh start - and so was her ex-husband. Here’s what happened next.

And an Arizona couple chose the southern Italian region of Basilicata for their new home and new life when they’d had enough of the high cost of living in the United States. CNN caught up with them to find out whether the gamble was worth it.

If you dream of a similar adventure abroad, then a good place to start is by brushing up on your foreign language skills. Here are the best language-learning apps for 2024, as tested by our partners at CNN Underscored, a product reviews and recommendations guide owned by CNN.

Smell you later

Some say it smells like garlic or sweaty feet. Others pick up notes of rotten flesh and portable toilet. Whatever the exact aroma of the “corpse flower” is, only a lucky few get to experience it, as it can take more than a decade to bloom and the flower lasts just 24 to 48 hours.

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