Day 1: 3 Planes, 3 Continents &; 8000 miles of Travelling…

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Fascinating Facts about Peru

  • The Inca civilization originated in 1200 B.C. in the Cuzco area of south-eastern Peru. The Incas lived in Peru until 1533.
  • The famous Machu Picchu was the location of the Inca civilization. Machu Picchu is a world heritage today and also considered as one of the wonders of the world.
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  • And let’s not forget its sister: Choquequirao!

Choquequirao

  • Peru grows more than 55 varieties of corn, and you can just about find it in any color  including blue, yellow, purple, white and black.

Corn

  • Monarchy existed in Peru during the Inca civilization (till 1532). In the same year the Inca Emperor was defeated and Peru became a colony of Spain

Ecuador-last-Inca-emperor_03

  • Peru was under Spanish rule for a long time and gained independence on 28th July 1821. However, it took nearly 3 years for Peru to get its recognition and it finally materialized on 9th December 1824.

spanish-conquest

 

Battle_of_Borodino

 

  • The potato is originally from Peru, and there are over 3,000 different varieties. Proud Peruvians use the phrase “Soy mas Peruano que la papa” (I am more Peruvian than the potato).

Peruvian potatoes

 

  • The finest cottons in the world, Pima and Tanguis are Peruvian.

Peruvian Pima Cotton

 

  • Peru has diverse geographic conditions with tall mountains, extensive plains, and numerous beaches. Snow covered peak of Alpamayo in Peruvian Andes as well as Peruvian rainforest are found here. In fact. two-thirds of Peru is covered in prime Amazon Rain Forest.

Alpamayo

Peruvian Rainforest

 

  • The oldest occupation of man in the America’s is traced back to the sacred City of Caral-Supe a few hours north of the capital Lima. The 626 hectare (1546 acre) site dates back 5000 years.
100330-N-4774B-129 CARAL, Peru (March 30, 2010) Sailors from the guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) tour the ancient city of Caral, the oldest city in the western hemisphere, while on liberty during a port visit. Bunker Hill is supporting Southern Seas 2010, a U.S. Southern Command-directed operation that provides U.S. and international forces the opportunity to operate in a multi-national environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Daniel Barker/Released)

100330-N-4774B-129
CARAL, Peru (March 30, 2010) Sailors from the guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) tour the ancient city of Caral, the oldest city in the western hemisphere, while on liberty during a port visit. Bunker Hill is supporting Southern Seas 2010, a U.S. Southern Command-directed operation that provides U.S. and international forces the opportunity to operate in a multi-national environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Daniel Barker/Released)

 

  • The culture of Peru is dominated by Spanish and Indian American culture. The Peruvian cuisine and performing arts are based on these traditions; however, the arts and crafts have their roots in the Inca civilization.

Peruvian Musician

 

  • The presence of the mysterious Nazca lines is a fascinating aspect of this country. These drawings have been made thousands of years ago and the reason for that same is still unknown.

Nazca Lines Peru

 

  • Ceviche and Pisco Sour are respectively the trademark dish and drink of Peruvian cuisine. Secondly, Lomo Saltado, Pachamanca are also famous dishes of Peru.

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Lomo-Saltado

Pachamanca

 

  • The Pisco Sour is Peru’s national drink and is made using Pisco brandy, lemons, sugar water, egg whites, ice and finished with bitters.

Pisco-Sour

 

  • The largest lake in South America, Lake Titicaca, lies in Peru. It is also one of the highest navigable lakes in the world.

Lake Titicaca

huascaran national park

  • In Peru, it is tradition to give friends and family yellow underpants on New Year’s Eve.

Yellow Underwear

  • Peru’s is the 8th largest producer of coffee in the world, and is the 5th largest producer of the Arabica bean.

Coffee Making Peru

  • There are 3 official languages in Peru: Spanish, Quechua and Aymara, but east of the Andes in Amazon Jungle regions it is thought that natives speak a further 13 different languages.

Aymara Language

  • Peru is home to the highest sand dune in the world. Cerro Blanco located in the Sechura Desert near the Nazca Lines measures 3,860 feet (1,176 meters) from the base to the summit.

Cerro Blanco Sand Dune

  • Peru is a surfer’s paradise. Chicama has the world’s longest left-handed wave at 4km’s long, and Mancora (close by) has the world’s largest left-handed point-break.

Big Wave Peru

  • The average life expectancy in this country is 70 years. The percentage of poverty is 42%. Peru has a literate population above 90%, with an impressive schooling system and an equally national health care system. The pictures below highlight the huge differences in income across the country.
Poverty in Peru

Poverty in Peru

City of Lima

City of Lima

  • It does not have a uniform climate and experiences 28 different distinct climates. Due to the location in the seismic zone, earthquakes are common occurrences.
Earthquakes

One of Peru’s many earthquakes

There are about 1816 different species of birds, 3500 species of orchids and 3532 species of butterflies that can be seen in the Amazon Rainforest in Peru.

Llama Machu Picchu

Llama with Machu Picchu archaeological site in background, Machu Picchu, Peru

My Peruvian Travel List

oversized-baggage-cart

If you read my previous blog you’ll see this month I’ll be travelling half way across the world to meet a special person in Peru for a month. Of course. such a travel requires adequate planning and sufficient resources to make the experience as enjoyable as possible.

If I have missed anything, or you’ll like to add other items the list, please comment below 🙂

Without further a-do, this is an approximation of my check-list:

Documents: 

  • No Visa required for UK citizen travelling to Peru
  • Passport (Just renewed)
  • Travel itinerary – I will be travelling (3 plane journey)
  • Medical insurance card / documents
  • Company business cards
  • Address Book and Notepad (with stationary)
  • Copies of all important documents – including card numbers & energy contact information – Copy for someone at home, copy for travelling and an e-copy (have sent a self-addressed email)
  • Document folder/organizer to keep everything together!

First Aid :

I will be taking a first aid travel kit which includes: (Fairly affordable on Amazon/eBay)

  • Ibuprofin / Paracetamol
  • Antiseptic cream
  • Gauze bandages
  • Throat losenges
  • Bandaids/plasters
  • Vitamins
  • First aid guide book
  • Sterile Sponge Dressing
  • Alcohol Pads
  • Antiseptic Towelettes
  • Butterfly Closures
  • Cotton Tip Applicators
  • Iodine Pad
  • Etc

Toiletries:

  • Shampoo & Conditioner
  • Soap
  • Styling Gel / Clay
  • Comb
  • Tooth Brush & Toothpaste
  • Portable Carry-on Plane Tooth Brush & Tooth paste
  • Deodorant
  • Antiperspirant
  • Shower gel
  • Post Shave Balm
  • Shaving Gel
  • Razor & Electronic Razor
  • Towel

Clothing:

  • Long trousers / Jeans / 3/4 trousers & Shorts – Informal & Smart
  • Short / Long Sleeve Shirts
  • Underwear – Must stock up!
  • Jacket
  • Coat
  • Sun hat
  • Belts
  • Pajamas
  • Dressing Gown
  • Winter clothing – (July to September is the winter season in Peru)

Footwear:

  • Walking / Hiking Shoes
  • Running / Exercising Trainers (I plan to visit the gym)
  • Formal / Smart Shoes
  • Comfortable socks – think & thin

Airplane Specific:

  • Passport, Flight e-tickets, Travel Itinerary documents
  • Travel Book (Will be reading The Chimp Paradox by Dr Steve Peters)
  • Headphones
  • A few Snacks
  • Travel toiletries
  • Neck Pillow

Other:

  • Sunglasses
  • Notebook & pen
  • Guide Books and Spanish Dictionary
  • Gifts
  • Power adapter
  • Portable charger
  • Suitcase (Up to 23kg on AA 1PC)
  • Hand-Luggage Bag
  • Travel Document Holder

 

 

Top 50 Travelling Quotes of All Time

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I will be travelling to Peru in July. If you are a traveler, or are planning on travelling, these quotes will be of inspiration.

50. Kilometers are shorter than miles. Save gas, take your next trip in kilometers.” – George Carlin

49. “Every perfect traveler always creates the country where he travels.” – Nikos Kazantzakis

48. “Our Nature lies in movement; complete calm is death.” – Blaise Pascal

47. “It is a strange thing to come home. While yet on the journey, you cannot at all realize how strange it will be.” – Selma Lagerlöf

46. “Remember that happiness is a way of travel – not a destination.” – Roy M. Goodman

45. “Clay lies still, but blood’s a rover / Breath’s aware that will not keep. / Up, lad: when the journey’s over there’ll be time enough to sleep.” – A. E. Housman

44. “As the traveler who has once been from home is wiser than he who has never left his own doorstep, so a knowledge of one other culture should sharpen our ability to scrutinize more steadily, to appreciate more lovingly, our own.” – Margaret Mead

43. “Too often. . .I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen.” – Louis L’Amour

42. “Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey.” –Fitzhugh Mullan

41. “One main factor in the upward trend of animal life has been the power of wandering.” – Alfred North Whitehead

40. “The open road is a beckoning, a strangeness, a place where a man can lose himself.” – William Least Heat Moon

39. “Travel only with thy equals or thy betters; if there are none, travel alone.” –The Dhammapada

38. “Our deeds still travel with us from afar, and what we have been makes us what we are.” – George Eliot

37. “Worth seeing, yes; but not worth going to see.” – Samuel Johnson, on theGiant’s Causeway

36. “An involuntary return to the point of departure is, without doubt, the most disturbing of all journeys.” – Iain Sinclair

35. “Traveling is like flirting with life. It’s like saying, ‘I would stay and love you, but I have to go; this is my station.’” – Lisa St. Aubin de Teran

34. “Once in a while it really hits people that they don’t have to experience the world in the way they have been told to.” – Alan Keightley

33. “Half the fun of the travel is the aesthetic of lostness.” – Ray Bradbury

32. “Bizarre travel plans are dancing lessons from God.” – Kurt Vonnegut

31. “We wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” – Hilaire Belloc

30. “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” – Susan Sontag

29. “I should like to spend the whole of my life in traveling abroad, if I could anywhere borrow another life to spend afterwards at home.” – William Hazlitt

27. “A child on a farm sees a plane fly overhead and dreams of a faraway place. A traveler on the plane sees the farmhouse… and thinks of home.” – Carl Burns.

28. “I love to travel, but hate to arrive.” – Albert Einstein

26. “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you traveled.” –Mohammed

25. “One always begins to forgive a place as soon as it’s left behind.” – Charles Dickens

24. “When one realizes that his life is worthless he either commits suicide or travels.” – Edward Dahlberg

23. “Without new experiences, something inside of us sleeps. The sleeper must awaken.” – Frank Herbert

22. “Arriving at each new city, the traveler finds again a past of his that he did now know he had: the foreignness of what you no longer are or no longer possess lies in wait for you in foreign, unpossessed places.” – Italo Calvino

21. “He who has seen one cathedral ten times has seen something; he who has seen ten cathedrals once has seen but little; and he who has spent half an hour in each of a hundred cathedrals has seen nothing at all.” – Sinclair Lewis, onsightseeing.

20. “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a cash advance.” – Bumper sticker

19. “Travel at its truest is thus an ironic experience, and the best travelers… seem to be those able to hold two or three inconsistent ideas in their minds at the same time, or able to regard themselves as at once serious persons and clowns.” – Paul Fussell

18. “Most of my treasured memories of travel are recollections of sitting.” –Robert Thomas Allen

17. “I am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.” – Mary Anne Radmacher Hershey

16. “Only by going alone in silence, without baggage, can one truly get into the heart of the wilderness. All other travel is mere dust and hotels and baggage and chatter.” – John Muir

15. “When you’re traveling, ask the traveler for advice / not someone whose lameness keeps him in one place.” – Rumi

14. “There are only two emotions in a plane: boredom and terror.” – Orson Welles

13. “To be on a quest is nothing more or less than to become an asker of questions.” – Sam Keen

12. “The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see.” –G. K. Chesterton

11. “When you are everywhere, you are nowhere / When you are somewhere, you are everywhere.” – Rumi

10. “When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money.” – Susan Heller

9. “The autumn leaves are falling like rain / Although my neighbors are all barbarians / And you, you are a thousand miles away / There are always two cups at my table.” – T’ang dynasty poem

8. “It is not down in any map; true places never are.” – Herman Melville

7. “People don’t take trips – trips take people.” – John Steinbeck

6. “We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best we can find in our travels is an honest friend.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

5. “It’s a battered old suitcase and a hotel someplace and a wound that will never heal.” – Tom Waits

4. “The map is not the territory.” – Alfred Korzybski

3. “It is solved by walking.” – Algerian proverb

2. “He who would travel happily must travel light.” – Antoine de Saint Exupéry

1. “What am I doing here?” – Arthur Rimbaud, writing home from Ethiopia

First Time Flying Tips (I have researched)

As I prepare to embark on my first 3-flight connected journey from Heathrow, England to the J Chavez International Airport in Lima, I have taken the time to research top tips (from various sources) that will be of prominent importance to greatly improve the smooth-running of the journey. I believe that it is essential for first-time solo flyers to have a basic level of what to expect in order to anticipate what will happen on the date of flight, and further to be contingent should a bad event happen (such as a delayed plane).

Tip 1 

When packing your luggage, make sure all your liquids are concealed separately.

This is a very useful tip that not only is inclusive of flight journeys, but also concerns any journey where your packed items (clothing, electronics, books etc) are liable to getting ruined by spilt liquids. We’ve all done it: opened our luggage to a devastation of mixed hair gel, sun lotion,  shampoo etc. By bagging these items separately, preferably into a concealed zipped bag(s), if liquids were to spill, at least your non-liquid items are saved from costly replacement.

Tip 2

Check your airline for Baggage Limits

For both checked baggage (what goes into the cargo-hold of the plane) and carry-on baggage (what you can actually take onto the plane).

Limits and restrictions on weight, items allowed in luggage depends individually for each airline. To be sure to check your airlines website for such information.

Although you are able to carry many more items.weight through ‘checked’ luggage, it is highly beneficial to carry your most important belongings through onto the plane (within the restrictions). Thus, in the event of your checked luggage being lost, at least then in the meantime you have your most priced possessions with you.

You can easily buy hand-scales for your luggage from most travel stores and supermarkets.

For extensive tips of advantages and disadvantages of both forms of baggage visit: http://www.ifly.com/airport-tips?page=2

Tip 3

If possible, check-in at least 24 hours before departure.

Most airlines now allow you to check in 24hrs prior to departure (you don’t have to check-in in person. This can be done very easily on your airlines website, or even through certain software apps.

In any case, as a general rule of thumb:

For International Flights: check-in at least 3 hours before departure

Domestic Flights (i.e. flights within the same country): check-in at least 90 minutes before departure.

If you have booked your flights in advance, they are usually subject to a time change within the time frame you have specified. I will be flying on 3 connected flights, which means any 3 flight times can change at any time prior to departure. Make sure you double-check your flight times the week before your flight. (Your airline will usually notify you by email or phone if any changes are made).

Tip 4

Keep all vital documents in a specific location before and after check-in. (Don’t forget what that location is!)

It is highly recommend to put all vital documentation into a specific (zipped) pocket of your hand-luggage bag. Such documents (ID, and Boarding Pass) need to be placed somewhere safe (from falling out, lost or stolen) but easily accessible.

You will be asked for your I.D on several occasions during your journey. During check-in, security and at your airport of arrival. By doing this, you are less likely to have a sudden panic (when your temporarily can’t find your documents), and won’t be holding many people up in a queue. Airports are very busy places and staff/passengers are not fond of queue lodgers!

Tip 5

Dress appropriately.

The simpler you dress the better. Going through security can be a nightmare if you have 2 belts, cuff-links, tie-slides, bracelets, necklaces, pendants and a million other accessories.  It will hold the queue up and make your flight seem a long, exasperating journey. You may also be at risk of losing items if they are not within the item restrictions determined by the airline. It is best to put all your fancy dress-wear in your ‘checked’ luggage and dress simply during the flight. Also try to not wear too much clothing, as you will probably have to take most of those items off, including your shoes.

Further, completely empty your pockets. Even a tissue or paper will be enough to sound the alarm when you past their sophisticated scanner. Whether you are dangerous or not, security will treat you like they treat anyone who carries a risk so be very cautious.

Tip 6

Get ready to take off shoes, jewellery, take out phone and other items during your wait in the security queue. 

Before you pass the security gate, it is best to get yourself as ready as possible so you don’t hold up the queue further.

Tip 7

Go directly to your departure gate after passing security before shopping.

Even if you have a million hour wait! It can put your mind at a lot of ease by walking to your departure gate as specified on your boarding pass / airport information displays. Most flyers tend to sit in the shopping area up until just before the departure time and underestimate the length they have to travel to arrive at their departure gate. Following this tip allows you to have prior knowledge of direction and duration, once you leave the shopping area. Departure gates are also subject to change, even changing a whole terminal is some cases. Make sure you constantly check the information displays to acknowledge any changes.

Tip 8

Be careful of your hand-luggage as your sleep in the departure lounge. 

The departure lounge can be a haven for pickpocketers and petite criminals. This can be particularly when you have a 12 hour wait for your plane and feel the need to sleep. What many travelers do to combat this is to sleep on your hand luggage, use your hand-luggage as a pillow to rest your head on. It is best to sleep on the opening of your bag and thus making it increasingly difficult for criminals to touch your items. Some airports have designated sleeping seats/beds, so look out for those, they are in high demand!

(Girl on right chooses her knee? Not a good idea!)

Tip 9

On the plane, leave roller-on bags on the over-head compartments and hand-luggage under the seats. 

There is usually limited room in the over-head compartments so it important that this space is designated to bulky items such as roller-on bags. There usually is however plenty of space under the seat in front. Use this space to keep your hand-luggage and general carry-on stuff.

Tip 10

Customise your checked bag/suit-case 

Make your suitcase as individual as possible, a striped multi-coloured suitcase is perfect!

This is a case where you should choose practicality over fashion. You may be slightly embarrassed by your suitcase but at least you’ll be able to find it quickly and efficiently when you leave your arrival airport. By a small padlock to lock your zip compartments: thus reducing likelihood of theft and risk of opening during transfer.It also pays to have a name-tag in case you need to choose between two identical bags / other proof of ownership.

Tip 11 

Check the terms of your travel insurance.

If you have purchased travel insurance to accommodate your journey for lost bags, medical cover etc ALWAYS ALWAYS read the terms. Usually, depending on the level of insurance, their is a compulsory access to be paid in the event of claiming for lost items, accidents etc.

The first 24hrs after an unfavorable events occurs is very important.The terms of your insurance product will specify the steps that need to be taken if the event was to occur. For example, many insurance companies require proof of lost of suitcase by an official airport document and also a police report within a specified time-frame after the loss.  Make sure you know what to do!

Tip 12

Use the airports in-built entertainment restaurants and shops to turn a terrible airport experience into a pleasurable one. Once past security and have checked your gate, there is not much more to worry about. Spend this time to relax and enjoy yourself. Have a beer and look forward to your trip ahead!

I’ll be adding more tips and my own experience (In July) for future blogs. I hope this information was useful to you and I’ll be happy to receive further tips from those with experience.

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My solo South American Voyage!

What is this all about?

So this is the start to my travel blog on my journey and 4 weeks in Lima, Peru

The reason for such a journey? To meet a very special person who I am very fond of (enough said!)

I plan to write many updates, pictures, videos etc over the next few months on my preparation, experiences and encounters on my voyage to the western South American country.

I hope these updates to be informative, educational and even be of entertainment / interesting!

The journey

On July the 21st this year (2015), I plan to travel (solo) over 8,500 miles (13,680 km) on 3 planes from Stoke-on-Trent, England to the Peruvian capital city Lima.

My journey will begin with a 154 mile (248 km) car ride from my house in Fenton, Stoke-on-Trent to Heathrow Airport making sure I check-in at least 3-hours prior to take-off.

Stoke to Heathrow

I will then be boarding the 19:45 Boeing 777 Jet across the Atlantic ocean to Logan International Airport in Boston. The plane is the world’s largest twinjet and has a typical seating capacity from 314 to 451 passengers! The flight will take around 7 hours 5-15 minutes. Travelling 3265 miles (5255 km). Which would make it 03:00 in England but 10:00 upon arrival (EDT = BST-5hours) in Boston. (And yes, meals are inclusive).

Heathrow to Boston

I will then be enduring another 9 hours 55 minutes wait before my next flight which correspondingly means I plan to visit /use every service, facility, shop and restaurant at least 20 times over. (I’m sure I’ll provide a new post during the time to tell what I get up to). (Ohh and to drink a tonne of coffee).

logan-airport_02

At 07:45 (EDT) I should be ready for the second take-off. Compared to the other flights, this one is relatively short (but not actually short by any measure): a 1258 mile (2024 km) ride on the Boeing 757 Jet, the largest single-aisle passenger aircraft, to Miami International Airport. All being well, arrival is expected to be at 11:25 (2hrs 30 min).

Boston to Miami

I’m glad of course that I only have an 1hr 30 minute wait until the next take off to  J Chavez International Airport in Lima.  However, there is of course the chance that any delays with the previous flight could delay my journey significantly. The last plane, a Boeing 767 Jet, will travel 2608 miles (4197 km) for a duration of 5 hours and 37 minutes.  Arrival is expected at 17:32 (PET = EDT- 1 hour).

Miami to Lima

At this point, I imagine to be feeling considerable Jet lag or/and a few symptoms of confusion, dehydration, headache, irritability, nausea, sweating, coordination problems, dizziness, memory loss….. (Probably not). (You’ll know if my blog post is delayed after arrival!)

AJC_01

 From here, I will get a 20 minute taxi from the airport to Bellavista district of the Constitutional Province of Callao in Peru, where I have been told to pay attention to rip-off/bogus taxi-drivers etc.  But first, I imagine to be purchasing coffee. LOTS of it!

My past experience of flying

Hardly any! I have only been on a few group flights. I have never flown solo, and some find it quite ambitious that I choose my first to be a 3-plane connected flight. I hope many of you reading the blog can take insight into what I find. If you are also new, my future blogs could be highly beneficial as we collaboratively progress on the traveling learning curve.  If you happen to be a veteran flyer / traveler, tips will be highly appreciated (to help me and readers) . If you are in a similar situation to me, I hope you find this blog insightful.

Whats to come?

I hope to update my readers the usual tips I find prior, during and after the trip. Further, I will be posting stories, pictures, videos and experiences of my trip, during and after. I’m aiming to keep future posts much shorter than this initial one, and much more illustrative!

An Analysis of Wine Quality

This research paper looks into the specific factors that has had an effect on consumer’s decisions when they gave their sentiment over the quality of wine.  The report gives an overview of the methods used to conduct the analysis, the results of the analysis and their interpretation. Finally, the report ends with a recommended conclusion of which factors should be considered significant for influencing consumer’s opinions over the quality of wine.

 

The principal objective was to determine which factors were considered to be of most importance, and also of least importance, when predicting the wine’s quality. To investigate this, thirty eight tasters were asked to give their opinions of the new wine by giving 6 different ratings after tasting the wine. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to develop a model for predicting the average wine quality rating given the rating of five other factors. These five factors were: Clarity, Aroma, Body, Flavour and Oakiness. For analysis, the ratings from the five factors were treated as the explanatory variables: the variables that are used to explain/predict the response variable; the wine quality rating. The multiple regression analysis essentially gave information determining the comparative influence of each of the 5 explanatory variables to the total variation in wine quality ratings. The findings from the analysis provided useful evidence of what factors should be considered of most/least importance to help importing decisions. The aim of this analysis was to give a parsimonious model that may have helped the importer to predict the average quality rating of wine, given the ratings of the five factors were known.

 

Using the statistical software package IBM SPSS Statistics 21, six variables were created:

1) Quality, which was the rating given for quality of the wine;

2) X1_Clarity, the rating given for the wine’s clarity;

3) X2_Aroma, the rating tasters gave for the Aroma (Smell) of the wine;

4) X3_Body, the rating given for body which generally refers to the sense of alcohol in the wine and the sense of feeling in the mouth;

5) X4_Flavour, the rating given for the Flavour of the wine;

6) Oakiness, rating’s given for how well they perceived the effects of oak from the wine.

Ratings for all these factors were taken from all 38 tasters. After the data was inputted, a multiple linear regression test, as opposed to a simple linear regression test which only has single explanatory variable, was performed on the software: which provided useful information that could be interpreted and reported. A regression test was made for all possible models: from a null model, which included no explanatory variables, to a full model that included all 5 explanatory variables. The results of interest from each test was the model summary table, ANOVA table and coefficients table. The model summary table gave values for, adjusted  and standard error of the estimate which are measurements that show how well a model fits the data.  is a measurement that shows the strength of the relationship between the response variables and the explanatory variables. Squaring  gives the proportion of explained variation from the explanatory variables as is called the coefficient of determination. However, as we had multiple explanatory variables in our model (five), we were unaware which of the variables contributed most significantly to this value. Nonetheless, the SPSS multiple regression analysis also gave the coefficients table to find each explanatory’s level of significance, this is explained below. The ANOVA (Analysis of Variance) table shows how much of the variability in our explanatory variables has attributed to the variation of the response variable (quality of wine rating).  It separates the total variability within a model into two parts. These are regression: the variance that can be explained by the explanatory values and residual: the variance which is not explained by the explanatory values, also known as the error part. The table also shows the sum of squares, degrees of freedom, mean square (MSR), F-Ratio and p-value. The F-Ratio indicates whether the model used provides a good overall fit for our data and shows how significantly the explanatory variables predict the response variables. The higher the ratio the more significant. The final table of interest, the coefficients table, gives values for unstandardized coefficients for each explanatory variable. Unstandardized coefficients signify how much the response variable; quality of wine rating, varies with one of the five explanatory variables when the other four explanatory variables are held constant. The first coefficient in this table represents a constant, denoted, this is the predicted rating of wine quality when all explanatory factors are held at zero. The unstandardized coefficients form a regression equation where  is the y-intercept and the variable coefficients are the weights of the explanatory variables. The equation is then used to predict the response variable, in this case the rating of wine quality, from the explanatory variables: the factor ratings. The results from all tests were then used to summarise the MSR values and  in two simple tables against the number of explanatory factors in the model. Further, the tables were used to create scatter graphs which helped give visual clues of the optimal number of factors that should be considered. The table was also used to find the best model suggested by backward elimination and forward selection. Using these methods, the most effective model that minimized the number of factors (explanatory variables) needed to be considered, therefore giving the wine important a bigger pool of wine’s to choose from. Simultaneously, the model also needed to have enough factors wine quality rating could be predicted (response variable) as accurately as was possible.

 

Multiple regression analysis was performed on all possible models (combinations of explanatory variables), using the methods above. The mean square error value (MSR) and coefficient of determination were obtained from these tests and summarized according to each model, as shown in the table below. Note: X1, X2, X3, X4, X5 explanatory variables relate to the Clarity, Aroma, Body, Flavour and Oakiness factors respectively.

Variables Included MSR Variables Included MSR
None 4.183459 0 X1, X2, X3 2.089265 0.541
X1 4.296194 0.001 X1, X2, X4 1.534382 0.663
X2 2.152917 0.499 X1, X2, X5 2.111765 0.536
X3 3.005167 0.301 X1,X3, X4 1.634882 0.641
X4 1.615917 0.624 X1, X3, X5 2.823412 0.38
X5 4.290167 0.002 X1, X4, X5 1.456294 0.68
X1, X2 2.213543 0.499 X2, X3, X4 1.550265 0.6659
X1, X3 2.900086 0.344 X2, X3, X5 1.927412 0.577
X1, X4 1.621286 0.633 X2, X4, X5 1.348441 0.704
X1, X5 4.406457 0.004 X3, X4, X5 1.527059 0.665
X2, X3 2.051629 0.536 X1, X2, X3, X4 1.569303 0.665
X2, X4 1.508257 0.659 X1, X2, X3, X5 1.921788 0.59
X2, X5 2.053114 0.536 X1, X3, X4, X5 1.439030 0.693
X3, X4 1.651229 0.627 X1, X2, X4, X5 1.337485 0.715
X3, X5 3.013914 0.319 X2, X3, X4, X5 1.385091 0.705
X4, X5 1.498743 0.661 X1, X2, X3, X4, X5 1.271824 0.721

 

To spot trends between the number of explanatory variables and the mean square error value in each model, the data was represented visually using a scatter diagram as shown below. The x-axis gives the number of explanatory variables and the y-axis gives the MSR values.

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The first insight found with the relationship is that, clearly, an increase in explanatory variables suggested a decrease in MSR. This plot showed that the lowest MSR value for three explanatory variables was almost the same as when four of five explanatory variables were used in a model. This indicated that we could ignore at most 2 explanatory variables without leading to a significant increase in the MSR value. Inspection of the table showed that this MSR value is 1.34844 (the lowest MSR) when variables X2, X4 and X5 were included in the model. This suggested a suitable parsimonious model (simplest plausible model with the fewest possible number of variables) might have been

A scatter diagram was also used to show the relation between the number of explanatory variables and the coefficient of determination. Again, the number of explanatory variables were plotted along the x-axis but now against the  values along the y-axis.

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The trend suggested an increase in the number of explanatory variables tended to led to an increase in R². Signifying that a larger proportion of the variation in wine quality ratings could be explained if we included more explanatory factors, i.e. the Clarity Rating. The plot also showed that including three, four or five variables produced an R² value at around the same value. Thus, the plot implies a suitable parsimonious model would again include three explanatory variables: which confirmed the previous suggestion. The highest R² value, with three explanatory variables was 0.704 and included the variables X2, X4 and X5, as before. The SPSS regression test for these three explanatory variables gave the tables:

 

 

 

Model Summary
Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. Error of the Estimate
1 .839a .704 .678 1.1612
a. Predictors: (Constant), X5_Oakiness, X4_Flavour, X2_Aroma

 

ANOVAa
Model Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
1 Regression 108.941 3 36.314 26.930 .000b
Residual 45.847 34 1.348
Total 154.788 37
 a. Dependent Variable: Quality
b. Predictors: (Constant), X5_Oakiness, X4_Flavour, X2_Aroma

 

 

Coefficientsa
Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig.
B Std. Error Beta
1 (Constant) 6.461 1.333 4.846 .000
X2_Aroma .576 .260 .306 2.214 .034
X4_Flavour 1.203 .274 .604 4.392 .000
X5_Oakiness -.600 .264 -.216 -2.269 .030
a. Dependent Variable: Quality

 

 

For this model, the model summary gave a  value of 0.839. This indicated a good level of prediction of the response variable. The R² was 0.704 which meant that the explanatory variables, X2, X4 and X5, explained 70.4% of the variability of the response variable. Interpreting this for analysis, this statistic showed that producers could have significantly influenced the quality rating of the wine by focusing on the ratings for Aroma, Flavour and Oakiness when importing.  The ANOVA table above also gives the F-Statistic F(3,34)=26.93 and p<0.0005. This showed the regression model was an excellent fit of the data. Finally, the coefficients table gave the regression equation for the model. So, the general form of the equation to predict the response variable (y) was: y=6.461+0.576X2 +1.203X4 -0.6X5 This explanatory variable, which had the largest influence on wine quality rating, was therefore the flavour rating X4. This meant that a 1.203 wine quality rating increase was predicted for each time the wine’s flavour rating had increased by 1. On the other hand, a 1 rating increase in the wine’s Oakiness, according to the regression, is predicted to decrease the wine’s quality rating by 0.6.

Another approach used to select a suitable parsimonious model was the Backward Selection method. The technique initially involved including all explanatory variables in our model and then removing variables sequentially from the model, if any, that improved the model. The deletion of each explanatory variable was tested using its F-statistic and the comparison criterion of 4. If the F-statics were calculated to be less than 4, the explanatory variables were eliminated from the model and so on. This technique eliminated X3 from the full model and gave the prediction equation: y=4.972 + 1.802X1 + 0.527X2+1.267X3-0.657X5

 

Further, an alternative to the backward elimination technique was forward selection: the complete reversal of backward elimination. This involved starting with a regression model, which included no explanatory variables, then including sequentially variables to the model that had an F-statistic larger than the comparison criterion of 4. This technique selected just X4 (Flavour rating) to be included in the model and gave the prediction equation: y=4.941+1.572X4

 

The results above provided three contrasted results. The first model included 3 explanatory variables, the second 4 explanatory variables and the third only 1 explanatory variable. The second model, as suggested by backward elimination, predicts that the wine quality rating was significantly influenced by 4 of the explanatory factors (Clarity, Aroma, Flavour and Oakiness ratings) and supports that, to increase the overall wine quality rating, the wine importer should import a wine that has high ratings on Clarity, Aroma, Flavour but a lower rating on Oakiness. However, finding a wine that has all these factors can be difficult and also costly to produce. Therefore, a simpler model may be more appropriate. The third model, as suggested by forward selection, predicts that the wine quality rating was significantly influenced only by the Flavour rating. This suggests that the wine importer should, to increase wine quality ratings, only find wines that have high Flavour ratings.  Conversely, this model may have been too simplistic and may not include the full model which impacts the overall wine quality rating. The first model, as suggested by inspection from the scatter plots, predicts that wine quality rating was actually significantly influenced by 3 of the explanatory factors which were Aroma, Flavour and Oakiness. This regression equation for this model shows that, in order for the wine importer to import the highest quality wine (as rated by consumers), the importer must select wine that has high ratings for Aroma and Flavour but a lower rating of Oakiness.  In this case, the most important factor effect on the wine’s quality rating is the Flavour so this factor should be the most significant when considering the selection of wine. If the importer wanted to find a wine that had a lower average quality rating (due to lowering the selling the price of the for example) the opposite of these factor ratings apply.