If you find the idea of travel daunting, focus on a destination that interests you, and gather information that focuses on that place specifically. There are so many places to see, that one can get lost in the sea of information. Once you decide on a target destination, limit your research and lower your stress.
Luggage is often a large problem when people travel. While it might seem like a good idea to buy your children small size luggage, remember that they are entitled to a full size carry-on on most major air carriers. This extra luggage space can often save you from checking an extra piece of baggage. This will save you from $25 to $50 on most airlines!
When traveling to a strange city, always be aware of your surroundings. Both, extremely busy and extremely quiet streets, can carry added risk. Tourists who are busy gawking at the sights may turn around to find their wallet gone. Always check to see who is around you and pay attention, if you feel like someone might be following you.
If you have a laptop, bring an A/V cable with you on your trip. Most hotel rooms come equipped with a television, and many now include free wireless internet as well. By hooking your laptop up to the hotel television with an A/V cable you instantly have access to many more entertainment options, whether streaming a movie from the internet to using the laptop as a DVD player.
When thinking of the items you are going to take with you on your trip, think about what the weather will be like. You can check how the weather has been in the region for the past week and also look at the forecast. Just make sure you take precautions if necessary, so you won’t be caught off guard, if the weather decides to change.
Try not to broadcast the location of your wallet. Be secretive about where you are keeping your money and precious information. Knowing where it is could give pickpockets an edge. Never put your wallet in your back pocket. If you are in a habit of doing so break it. Your back pocket is very easy to steal from.
Register your trip with the US State Department. Doing so will give them a way to contact you or your family in the event of an emergency. The State Department provides this service free of charge to American citizens who are traveling to foreign soil, so it doesn’t make sense not to take advantage of it.
Bring your own adapters, unless you want to buy over-priced ones. Many foreign countries have differently shaped and sized outlets. Buying adapters while you are still at home is much more cost-effective. Businesses in these countries have learned to take advantage of travelers who forget that the plugs are quite different from back home.
A good tip to have filtered water is to melt the ice provided by the hotel and use that for your morning coffee. Tap water rarely tastes good, so place ice in the bucket for overnight melting. This allows you to brew that fresh tasting coffee using a different kind of filtered water.
If you know in advance that you will be passing through some less-than-desirable neighborhoods or areas of town en route to your destination, don’t rely solely on your in-dash GPS system. Map out alternate routes using MapQuest or Google Maps, so you don’t end up in a bad part of town, in the middle of the night, with bad directions.
Inexpensive travel can seem nearly impossible today. Gas prices are astronomical, and airlines are too expensive for many people. You can still travel cheap if you are willing to take a bus or travel in a car pool with other people. You can search in advance for inexpensive destinations that will make your travel expenses less.
Attend educational seminars while traveling on board a cruise ship. Most ships offer these lectures for free, and they are often entertaining and interesting. Many talk about something related to your cruise, such as the wildlife that you might see when you port. This activity can make your entire trip more enjoyable.
If you’re traveling abroad, be sure to carry an extra passport photo. If you should happen to lose your passport, or if it is stolen, it may take considerable time to replace it. When you have an extra photo with you, you’re one step ahead of the requirements. You should also be carrying photocopies of the paperwork that will be asked for on the passport application.
Before you fly anywhere in the world, check both the weather forecast for your the airports of departure and arrival. If you see some lousy weather in the forecast, check the airport websites too and make sure they haven’t already made an announcement. Weather delays are no fun and they’re made even worse if you don’t prepare for them.
Many travel companies advertise a hefty discount if you book an airline together with a hotel. While such packages can save you money, make sure you do some research before committing. Those package deals might seem like a steal at first, but you may wind up staying at a hotel you won’t like, or taking an airline you wouldn’t ordinarily want to use.
Pack your toiletries into a Zip-lock bag. You will need to do this to get through airline security and it is sure to save you some space in your baggage as well. It will take up less room than the typical toiletry bag and it will help avoid a mess in your luggage if anything was to spill during travel.
Travel can be extremely rewarding. All people, of different ages, races and creeds can learn and grow from a travel experience. There are many resources out there to help the unseasoned traveler. A little preparation can go a long way and travel will be a joy, not a source of anxiety.