Whether making arrangements to travel by car, plane, or train, planning a recreational getaway can be very overwhelming to even the most seasoned traveler. Fortunately, there are millions of seasoned travelers who are willing to share their best travel tips and tricks to make the process more manageable and enjoyable for everyone.
When you travel, it’s important to stop for the cheese as well as the big-time monuments. What that means is this: Go to Mt. Rushmore, sure. But first, you need to stop at the Jolly Green Giant Statue in Minnesota and get your picture taken. You need to actually go see the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD, and Wall Drug. These places are kitschy, and that’s exactly why they’re essential. America is both a place of great beauty and great silliness, and both should be celebrated by the traveler.
To avoid any awkward confrontations, do some research if you are traveling to a foreign nation. This includes looking up standard phrases such as “thank you,” “how much” and “how are you.” You should also look around for standard customs of the country, such as gestures, so that you can avoid offending anyone with gestures or body language that seem normal to you.
One simple tip for hotel safety is to carry a small rubber door stop with you. It can pack easily inside a shoe or even be carried in a jacket pocket if you’re short on space. This door stop can be wedged under the door at night, to prevent midnight visitors.
Traveling with a group? Work to compromise on where to eat and where to go. If you decide to be selfish, the rest of the group will resent you for causing them to have a bad time. By compromising, everyone is happy at some point and you are forced to try and experience new things.
Anyone who’s ever been on a cruise knows how much all the hallways and doors look the same. To make finding your door easier, bring a photo of your family pet or something (nothing personal!) and attach it to your door with a Christmas bow. This will help you easily identify which room is yours.
If you want to attempt to get an empty seat, there are some tricks to try. Ask for a seat near the back end of the plane, because these generally fill up last. If you are not comfortable with that, ask for an exit row seat. These seats come with extra responsibility, that not many are willing to accept.
Bring cookie sheets when on a road trip with kids. They can be used to make flat surfaces for playing cards or a surface for coloring books. For little ones, try bringing magnetic numbers and letters for educational enjoyment.
Bus travel is a great way to see the country side. It allows you an inexpensive way to get from destination to destination while sitting back and allowing someone else to do the driving. You will get to enjoy the scenery and even have frequent stops to see each place, without having to spend too much or bother with gas expenses.
Research and prepare for any communications costs that you might have, in regards to computing while traveling. Knowing where you will have access to Wi-Fi and what equipment you will need to connect at your various destinations, will make your journey easier and avoid on the fly purchases when you need to communicate.
Use the internet to plan your trip. You can research thousands of destinations online to find the right place for your vacation. Using the internet, you can find information on just about any destination you can think of. You will not have the problem of finding too little information, rather, you may have the problem of information overload.
When you are traveling to a new city, join in on a pub crawl. You can experience the downtown area and meet new people. You’ll have even more fun by slowly eating dinner across the different restaurants; have drinks at one place and then an appetizer at the next. Work your way up to a main course and dessert.
If you travel with many electronics pack a power strip. Though hotels have electrical outlets available it is not uncommon for each person to have 2 or 3 items that need to be charged every night. A power strip can keep the cords relegated to one area instead of strewn all over the room.
Bring your own travel necessities and comfort aids. Do not count on the airline that you are traveling with to provide you with things like pillows, blankets, and headsets. Bring your own so you will know that you can be as comfortable as possible during your flight and you will not be sorry.
Take a photo of your luggage that you are checking. It will save you a good bit of time and grief if it should get lost during transport. You will be able to present a photo of the bag to the airline and they will have no question as to whether the bag that they have found is yours or not.
To avoid losing everything if your bag happens to get robbed on a trip, try splitting up your valuable into different locations. This entails placing your various credit cards, debit cards, bank cards, traveler’s checks, etc. in different pockets, bags, and wallets. This ensures that if you are robbed from one source that you won’t be strapped for cash on your trip.
Ask for directions prior to leaving your hotel. Your concierge is going to be able to give you the best directions to find the places that you would like to go during your stay. If you happen to get lost while you are out, ask directions from a family or a woman with children.
With so many resources available for travelers, there is no reason to let your impending trip leave you stressed out and anxious. Rather than allowing yourself to miss out on the excitement and spontaneity of a recreational trip, remember the advice in this article to make the most out of your time abroad.