Traveling is exciting and can be a great time for you or one of the biggest headaches you will ever encounter if not done right. Read on for some great ideas on how to travel smart and take care of all the little things that if you don’t, will leave you wishing you stayed home.
Be aware of scams that attempt to prey on unwary travelers. In many poorer areas of the world, it is safest to assume that anyone begging for money or trying to stop you for just about any reason could be a pickpocket. Don’t ever show or hand over your wallet to anyone, even if they claim to be police officers.
When selecting a location to travel to, there is no better source of information than a fellow traveler. Other travelers with similar needs and plans, can tell you what destinations are must-sees and what areas you should try to avoid. No guidebook can replace the first-hand experience of another person or family.
If you’re going on a road trip with kids, try bringing some cookie sheets along with you. They’re great to use as lap trays for eating in the car. The having the edges curved up with prevent any spills too and they’re easy to clean off quickly. You can also flip them over and the kids can use them as desks for coloring, writing, or playing a game.
You can save a lot of room in your suitcase depending on the way you arrange your clothing. If wrinkles are not necessarily a problem upon the arrival of your destination, using the rolling method can help save many inches of square space. Simply fold your clothes into a long, narrow strip, and roll them as tightly as you can.
Your baggage can really weigh you down on a trip. Carefully consider your clothing choices. There’s no reason to take half of everything you own! Take clothing that you can easily rinse out in a bathroom sink, or in a bucket if the situation so demands. Make your choices mix and match, so a few items will be worn several items in different combinations.
Sometimes long flights can cause you to sit and sit and sit. Don’t be afraid to get up and walk down the aisles every once in a while. Exercise is great for you and when the plane reaches its’ destination, you won’t feel so lousy and you will avoid the stiff feeling in your legs.
When you’re taking a trip that requires a passport or any type of paperwork for that matter, make sure that you have a second copy available. Go to your local photocopy shop and make a copy of all of your documents. This is a great way to stay safe, even if you lose your original documents or if they are stolen.
One way to collect memories of your trip is to do crayon rubbings of architectural features, historical markers or even, just interesting textures. All you need is a crayon and thin, newsprint like, paper. Tear the paper cover off the outside of the crayon. Next, hold the paper flat on the surface you are recording. To complete the rubbing, use the side of the crayon rubbing it back and forth until the image emerges.
Avoid locking yourself into a rigid schedule when traveling with the kids to a theme park vacation. Keep in mind that the real point is to have fun not endure a marathon as you race from one ride or attraction to the next. Go over the itinerary with the kids the week before the trip and let each pick one or two specific activities they really want to do. Focus your day on making those dreams come true and integrate other activities as time allows. A mid-day break with a return to your hotel for rest and a swim in the pool can provide an opportunity for some enjoyable family downtime.
Ask around on the social networks you frequent for any tips or recommendations of the area you’re planning on visiting. You’ll be surprised just what may come up. Ask what the best hotels are, what the best restaurants are, what places of interest you should visit. Friends usually give the best ideas!
If you are traveling to Mexico or the Caribbean during hurricane season, it’s a wise idea to purchase travel insurance, if it’s within your budget. Unfortunately, by the time a hurricane warning is forecast, it’s too late to buy coverage, so make sure you get it at the time that you book your vacation. For a price, you can obtain “Cancel for Any Reason”� insurance that lets you cancel your trip for reasons not already specified in your policy.
When using traveler’s checks, be sure to cash them prior to eating out or shopping. Many places abroad do readily take traveler’s checks, but it can be a pain to use them as they are. It’s possible to get shorted when using them; so, sometimes cash is better.
While traveling, it is important to keep your home safe while you are away and it will be empty. To reduce the chances of someone thinking your house is empty and easy pickings, you should have a trusted person tend the house. That person can get newspapers, mail and even move the cars around that may be in the driveway. Most importantly, they will mask that the house is empty.
Adjust your schedule to your destinations timezone a day or two before leaving. If you will be traveling to a location where morning is three hours earlier than you are used to, set your alarm to start the routine early. Get to bed earlier to match the timezone as well and you can acclimate your body to the ritual.
Hopefully this article has given you some tips and tricks on how to be a wise traveler. In this day and age you really have to keep your eyes open and your wits about you to keep traveling safe and smooth. Check your list before taking off and keep these smart tips in mind.