If things are not going so great at work or home, consider taking a quick reprieve and traveling for a few days. It does not have to be an exotic location: just a few days “away,” no matter how many miles away from home, can help refresh your mind and spirit. Read this article before you plan your travel to get some helpful hints.
If your cellphone will not cover long distance from the place you intend to travel to, it might be a smart idea to invest in a phone card before leaving. A phone card will make calls much less expensive and ensure that you don’t accidentally make any expensive long distance calls.
Before departing on a trip, the wise traveler makes sure at least one person back home knows where he will be. This “home base” contact should also be updated with any unplanned changes the traveler encounters on the way. Someone who knows where a traveler is – and where they should be – can be a great help in the case of trouble on the road.
When traveling in a strange city by taxi, ask an independent third party such as a front desk clerk or baggage porter what the right rate is for a trip to your destination. Also set up the rate with the driver before you get into the cab. This helps prevent you from getting ripped off.
Watch prices even after you book. Some airline and hotel companies offer you a refund if the price of your reservation drops after you book it, so keep an eye on the price. Alternatively, set-up an account with a price watcher site. After you enter the reservations you made and the price you paid, it will alert you when the price has dropped by the minimum amount required for a refund.
Long driving trips can be fun and economical, but the cost of stopping for meals every few hours will add up, especially for a family. If you are planning a longish car trip, make sure you have plenty of car food available in advance. You may be able to get away with skipping the hourlong lunch stop, which will not only save you money, but will get you to your destination sooner. If you have a second adult in the car, that person can serve as “lunchmaker,” handing around sandwiches, cutting fruit, and making sure everybody gets their midday meal on the road.
If you need to use the bathroom during a long flight, please make sure to put your shoes on when entering the restroom. You never know what kind of germs can be on the floor of the plane, especially near the commode. When you return to your seat, feel free to kick your shoes off.
If you’re going on a cruise, pack a highlighter in your luggage! There are tons of activities that go on during the cruise and most of the time you’ll get a nice little newsletter that details what’s going on and where. You can use your highlighter to mark which ones you want to do, and save yourself some headaches.
Learn to take it easy. You do not have to follow a strict schedule when you are traveling. If you feel like you must schedule out your vacation, at least pen in a little “nothing” time, where you are free to follow up on anything that has interested you, or just lay by the pool with a drink.
When traveling long distances by airplane, make sure to get up and walk around every hour or two to stretch your legs. Staying seated for too long can lead to medical issues such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), so take a stroll up and down the aisle every once in a while.
If you are traveling with a laptop and plan to spend a lot of time in your hotel room, pack an A/C cable in your laptop case. If the room features an HDTV, you can use the cable to connect your computer to the television. This allows you to stream movies from Netflix or Hulu to your laptop, then watch them on the larger screen. It is definitely cheaper than paying five bucks a pop for video rental.
Travel in May and October to avoid crowds, save money and enjoy temperate weather. In those months, many families with children cannot travel due to school commitments, making many tourist attractions much less crowded. This may also result in lower costs for airfare and hotels. As an added bonus, the weather in May and October is usually perfect for traveling — not too hot and not too cold.
Prior to traveling abroad, take some time to familiarize yourselves with the local laws of the country you are visiting. Laws can be very different from country to country. Consulates cannot step over local laws, so if you do break one, even if you were unaware of it, you will be held accountable.
When you are traveling, you can do a few things to save money at home. First of all, turn the air conditioner off or just down. Next, turn off the sprinklers. It will also help to put your lights on timers. And last, but not least, unplug your major appliances.
When traveling by car, bus, or train always dress comfortably. You might find that you’re on the road for a few days and a comfortable outfit can make the trip more pleasant. You will also be able to sleep better if you are dressed in a relaxed fashion.
Invest in a good pair of earplugs. It is often difficult to sleep in unfamiliar surroundings, away from the comforts of your own bed. Add to this unfamiliar noise and you could spend your vacation in a sleep deprived state. Earplugs help you block out noises that might keep you up, or can help you concentrate when in a noisy location such as an airplane or busy terminal.
Travel can be for relaxation, rejuvenation, adventure or just pure escapism. Whatever your reasons for traveling may be, use the helpful tips outlined in the article to make your journey as stress-free as possible. That way you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride — just always remember to buckle your seat belt.