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Infographic: 12 of the World's Most Amazing Train Journeys

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When it comes to speed and efficiency, planes can't be beat—but a long train ride lets travelers slow down and enjoy the journey, resulting in an extra-memorable voyage. From the Trans-Siberian Railway to the Eastern and Oriental Express, travel company Pettitts has an infographic of 12 of the world's most storied (and scenic) railways.

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Pop Culture
Calling All Neil Young/Locomotive Superfans: The Singer Is Auctioning Off His Model Trains
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

If you love both classic rock and miniature locomotives, have we got an auction for you. Canadian rock icon Neil Young is auctioning off some of his personal belongings, and the set includes some of his cherished model train collection, including train control devices he invented himself.

Fans of his music may not realize it, but Young has been an obsessive model train buff since childhood. According to Gibson.com, he got his first train set at age 5, and continued to expand his set in his family’s basement well into his teens (despite the shocks he would get from running the trains after the basement flooded during rainstorms).

A silver model train with multiple cars
Julien's Auctions

As an adult, he poured his musical fortune into building up a massive collection of rare models and creating a sprawling rail system at home, which he used to bond with his son, Ben, who has cerebral palsy. He eventually bought out the prominent toy train company Lionel, becoming a model train titan in his own right. He also invented controls that were easier for Ben to use, creating a digital system that can control 99 trains at the same time.

Three model trains
Julien's Auctions

Some pieces from Young’s huge train collection will go on sale from Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles on December 9, giving fans a chance to own a few pieces of both music and model train history. Some of the prototypes and trains on sale are worth up to $15,000. Some, like the HORDE Tour Psychedelic Vanderbilt Hudson locomotive, Young even brought on tour with him. (In one instance, Sonic Youth co-founder Kim Gordon remembers him obsessively tinkering with a model cow to make it “moo” more realistically during dinner while they were on tour together in 1991.) Many of the trains are rare models that come from the Lionel archives, and some feature typewritten details about them by Young. One custom-painted train is even signed by Young.

The auction also features slightly-less-dweeby items, like Young’s guitars and classic cars, if that’s more your speed. You can check all the lots out here.

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Live Smarter
Why the Best Time to Book Your Thanksgiving Travel Is Right Now
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You're never going to get a true steal on holiday plane tickets, but if you want to avoid spending your whole salary flying to visit your relatives over Thanksgiving, the time is nigh to start picking seats. That's according to the experts at Condé Nast Traveler, who cite data from Expedia and Skyscanner.

The latter found that it was cheapest to secure Thanksgiving tickets 11 weeks before the holiday. That means that you should have bought your ticket around September 4, but it's not too late; you can still save if you book now. Expedia's data shows that the cheapest time to buy is 61 to 90 days before you leave, so you still have until September 23 to snag a seat on a major airline without paying an obscene premium. (Relatively speaking, of course.)

When major travel holidays aren't involved, data shows that the best time to book a plane ticket is on a Sunday, at least 21 days ahead of your travel. But given that millions of other Americans also want to fly on the exact same days during Thanksgiving and Christmas, the calculus of booking is a bit more high stakes. If you sleep on tickets this month, you could be missing out on hundreds of dollars in savings. In the recent study cited by Condé Nast Traveler, Expedia found that people booking during the 61- to 90-day window saved up to 10 percent off the average ticket price, while last-minute bookers who bought tickets six days or less from their travel day paid up to 20 percent more.

Once you secure those Turkey Day tickets, you've got a new project: Your Christmas flights. By Hopper's estimates, those flights rise in price by $1.50 every day between the end of October and December 15 (after which they get even more expensive). However, playing the waiting game can be beneficial, too. Expedia found that the cheapest time to book Christmas flights was just 14 to 20 days out.

Before you buy, we also recommend checking CheapAir.com, which tracks 11,000 different airfares for flights around the holidays to analyze price trends. Because as miserable as holiday travel can be, you don't want to pay any more than you have to.

[h/t Condé Nast Traveler]

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