Travel is one of those things that everyone can get into, but in which not everyone really excels. Making travel arrangements can be a fast, painless thought-free process. However, getting the best deals and making the best plans, takes a little more effort. Here are a few tips for maximizing the benefits that good travel planning can bring.
When selecting a destination for your travels, keep abrest of the recent news. Picking locations that are in high levels of turmoil may not be the best idea. However, don’t let over-anxious friends and relatives talk you out of a trip to a safe destination that has recently been the victim of some kind of attack.
Before you go on a trip, ask around for tips from friends and family. See who has been there before and/or what they’d recommend you either visit or avoid. Are there particular restaurants, sights, or shows you should see? You can also check out sites on the internet that provide advice from fellow travelers.
Being careful about purchases while traveling will help you through customs. Remember anything you buy on your trip must pass through customs when you return home so exercise caution when you see street vendors abroad or other sellers who may be offering counterfeit or unsafe souvenirs you will have to surrender later.
When traveling in foreign countries, beware of police officers who ask for your ID. Make sure you ask them for their ID to prove they’re actually a cop. Instead of showing them your real passport, show them a photocopy instead. You don’t want to risk a thief running off with your passport.
If you are worried about traveling with a large carry-on bag, plan ahead. Airlines usually board in groups of five or ten rows, so pick a seat in row 11 or 21, not row 19. Also, as soon as the airline calls the seat block ahead of you, go get in line. This way you’re waiting at the front instead of the back.
Pack some plastic zipper bags. You know you need them to get your liquids and toiletries through security, but extras can always come in handy. You may need a few extra for snacks on the road, as a garbage bag, or as an ice pack in an emergency. Most of all, they come in handy when you are packing to return home and have a soaking wet swimsuit to put in your bag.
When going on vacation, make sure to purchase travel insurance. Taking this step can cover you in the event that you need to go to the hospital or have a medical evaluation while away from home. This is especially important, if you are thinking of participating in adventure activities or sports.
If you are traveling by plane, make sure you have enough room in your luggage for the things you want to take back. If your bags are packed full before you get there and you want to buy new clothes or souvenirs, not only will your clothes get all wrinkly, but there could be a chance that your luggage bag bursts and you lose the old things, as well as the new.
Save money on your travel plans by researching what other travelers are paying for similar trips. There are websites that allow you to input your route and then show you the average prices for airfare, in the month that you are traveling. Some sites will also display the best deals that other users found in the past few days. At the very least, you will get a good idea of what you should be paying.
Try and get as much knowledge of the destination you’re going to travel to before you arrive there. You want to have an idea of the things you want to do rather than finally getting to the hotel and feeling lost and bored. You can also ask hotel employees and locals where good places to check out are.
If you’ve got a day ashore planned, why should you spend your time finding a place to eat and then paying a fortune for some food? Most cruise lines offer 24 hour room service. So before you disembark, have a sandwich and chips brought up to your room. You can pack it up and use it for lunch while you’re out enjoying the sun.
If you take prescription medications, plan for your vacations. Carry enough of your medications with you to cover your entire trip plus an additional week. You will most likely not be able to fill prescriptions while traveling, plus you want to be covered if you are delayed at any point during your trip.
You can save yourself a lot of time and avoid hassles by traveling as light as possible. If you just take carry-on luggage and don’t check any bags, you won’t have to waste your time standing around the baggage carousel after your flight and you’ll never have to worry about the airline losing your bags.
When traveling with a baby, use the hotel’s coffee machine to sterilize your bottles. Wash all the different parts to the bottles using soap and hot water. Plug up the sink and place all the bottle items in it. Allow the coffee machine to fill with water and then turn it on. Wait for the water to heat up and then pour the hot water over the bottles, nipples and rings. Repeat as necessary, completely covering the items with the water. Let them soak for at least five minutes, and your baby will have a sanitary bottle to drink from.
Everyone on board a plane, train or ship, has something in common, they have all paid for the privilege of being there. Some passengers seem happier than others, though. These are the wise travelers, who have made an effort to arrange their travel plans for maximum convenience and economy. A little education can help you to join their ranks and travel with a smile.