Best Ways to Cut Travel Costs

Most people who travel less will tell you that travel costs are the key reason why they do not take trips more often. While that could be partly true, traveling does not require large sums of money. With the many travel options available today, there are various ways through which you can even travel the world for free. Nevertheless, the following are the best tips for cutting travel costs that can help you save more on your next trips. 

Book Flights in Advance 

While almost everyone tries to book flights in advance, most people do not know how early they should book to get cheaper airfares. Generally, you can easily get the lowest airfares when you book your flights about 2 – 3 months before the departure date. However, you should first conduct a bit of research from different airlines to find the right flights with cheaper airfares. 

Book Pods in Hotels 

The trend is not very popular but, swiftly gaining traction in major cities around the world including the U.S, Japan, Europe, and India. A Pod hotel is whereby the hotel offers guests pods instead of rooms at budget prices. Pods are tiny and compact spaces with a bed, air conditioning, personal safe, power outlets, TV, and internet. They charge very low fees with complimentary breakfast and shared washrooms. 

Travel like a Local 

Staying like a local could also be a great way to cut travel costs. One of the best ways to do that is by eating from the local food outlets. Apart from the low prices of food, eating at the local food joints will also offer you a better experience of the culture and more opportunities for interacting with the locals. Another way to live like a local is by booking a hostel or staying with the locals. 

Although there are many ways to save money when traveling, you should be keen not to end up ruining the experience. Instead, focus on making the best memories with the budget that you have. After all, traveling is about exploring, which does not always require a lot of money.

Scientific Effects of Traveling

For some people, traveling provides a chance to escape the problems they face in life. Others see traveling as a chance to recharge their emotional batteries. But, regardless of the reasons why a person travels, the act can have crazy effects on their body, mind, and soul. Here are some of the scientific effects of traveling. 

Travel can affect Your Personality 

Traveling provides a chance to escape your comfort zone. In psychology, this is known as the Big Five concept. It refers to the major dominant characteristics of human personality. These include openness, neuroticism, extraversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. 

When a person travels, they interact with other people while immersing in new cultures. This aligns their goals with the openness trait of human personality. 

Traveling Broadens the Perspectives a Person Has on Life 

Traveling provides a chance to observe the way people with different cultures interact. This provides the fastest way to be aware of their culture and that of the other people. For instance, a person can put the things they’ve always taken for granted into perspective. They can learn what makes them appreciate their roots. 

Traveling can Increase Emotional Stability 

Traveling enables a person to put their life into perspective. It can also make a person less anxious in terms of changing their daily life. Rather than face the chances with angst and uneasiness, travelers are always willing to face the deviation with openness. They are open to changes in the standard routines. 

Traveling Brings the Adrenaline Rush 

Skydiving and hiking are some of the travel activities that create the adrenaline rush. The adrenaline rush is a major motivation that makes some people travel. 

Learning 

Traveling can be a learning experience. For instance, traveling can present a chance to learn a second language. It can also be a chance to finds out what your body and brain are capable of. Thus, traveling can be a chance to stretch your capabilities. 

Traveling can affect the body, mind, and soul of a person. If you’ve not been traveling, consider doing it more often to enjoy the scientific effects of traveling. 

What is the Point of Using a Professional Travel Agent?

Putting together a successful trip is not usually a very easy thing, especially if you are planning your first adventure. Even savvy travelers seek the help of travel agents from time to time. A professional agent can provide a wide range of services to facilitate the planning of the trip and, also make sure that the experience meets your expectations. Here’s why you should consider using a professional travel agent when planning your next itinerary. 

Travel Expertise and Experience

Professional travel agents have a better understanding of the workings of the industry including destinations and service providers. Besides, they also know the critical and relevant laws and regulations for travelers. As a result, a professional travel agent can provide the best advice to make your trip enjoyable and stress-free. 

Resourcefulness 

Unlike any other average traveler, professional travel agents have easy access to vast travel resources. They know how and where to find the best travel deals for different kinds of travelers on short notice. Through their contacts, a professional travel agent can find the best flights, destinations, hotels as well as activities that specifically match your interests and budget. Savvy travel agents can even offer you tips on how to save money when traveling. 

Convenience 

Putting together a trip requires a lot of time and effort. Apart from just searching for travel destinations and activities, processing travel documents and bookings are also critical to every trip. Whenever you hire a professional travel agent, they can handle all the procedures on your behalf so you only worry about making memories. Delegating most of the tasks to a travel agent will give you ample time and the peace of mind to prepare for the adventure. 

Advocacy 

Besides just planning your trip, a professional travel agent will watch your back to make sure that you get the intended experience. In case something goes wrong in the course of the trip, a professional travel agent will see to it that you get justice. They will do the necessary follow-ups to determine the faults and, take actions to prevent the exploitation of travelers.  

Now that you understand the value of a travel agent, you should consider hiring one the next time that you are planning a vacation. 






How to Enjoy Local Travel Experiences in a Foreign Destination

Enjoying local travel experience in a foreign destination makes a vacation more interesting. Local travels enable you to explore your destination’s diversity more. Even if you travel to a destination that is visited the most, touring it like a local will enable you to enjoy extraordinary experiences. That’s because local travel allows you to go past the ordinary tourist sites, monuments, and museums. Here are tips on how to enjoy local travel experiences in a foreign destination.

Get Lost

Don’t be too keen not to get lost. Instead, be ready to be lost in your destination. You will realize that being lost enables you to explore your destination more as you try to find your way to the hotel room. You can even interact with the local people more and learn more from them. In fact, it’s by being lost that you can end up in places where you will have more fun. Don’t be surprised if you end up dressed in local clothes and dancing to the local tunes.

Explore Cultural Diversity by Tasting the Local Foods

Navigate the local scene for foods and drinks. Take time to discover the fruits diversity at your travel destination. Different terrains and climates give the locals different types of fruits. Be ready to enjoy local desserts made of different fruits. In fact, you can go on a food tasting tour if there is a company that provides it at your destination. This will enable you to sample multicultural cuisines during your trip.

Hang out with the Locals

Don’t spend all the time alone or with other travelers. Instead, hang out with the local people. Engage in their sports and go to places where they spend their free time. You will learn more about their way of life if you spend time doing something together.

In addition to these guidelines, focus on exploring past the most popular cities at your travel destinations. Leaving the major cities enables you to find hidden treasures with beautiful landscapes, powerful interactions, and distinct cultural experiences. These will make your experience better.

The Best January Travel Destinations

January travelers like my favorite travel roofer/blogger, Mr. Arturo T. of GT Roofing San Antonio, has always have many options to consider in the summer south of equator and the northern hemisphere. You may opt to embrace a snowy season and what it has to offer including ice skating, skiing, hot cocoa and cozy fireplaces. Basically, there are many choices for a January traveler. If you plan to go on vacation this January, here are some of the destinations to consider.

Park City, Utah

January is snow time at the Park City. Visitors have a chance to enjoy all kinds of winter activities at the mountain community that is 32 miles away from Salt Lake City. Cross country, snowboarding and downhill skiing are some of the activities that you can engage in.

Aruba

This is situated in the Southern Caribbean Sea. It’s about 15 miles from the Venezuela coast. Along with Sint Maarten and Curacao islands, this destination is part of the Netherlands Kingdom. It has a dry, warm climate and low- to mid-temperatures that makes it a perfect January getaway. Aruba is a perfect January travel destination for anybody escaping cold weather. It has amazing white sand beaches where you can relax, desert landscapes worth exploring, and mangroves where you can kayak. Engage in amazing outdoors activities like deep sea fishing, horseback riding, windsurfing and kite surfing.

Courtina d’Amezzo, Italy

Cortina is among the most beautiful ski resorts in the world. It’s called “The Queen of the Dolomites” for a reason. This is a prime travel destination in January due to its amazing ski areas, room options, and gorgeous landscapes. It dates back to the Roman settlement times when it was the World War I battles site. The Outdoor Museum of the Great War is a testimony of its fascinating history. It’s situated a few hours distance from Venice and this makes a pre-skiing side trip a great option at this destination.

If you plan to go on a trip this January, consider one of these January travel destinations and you will enjoy a truly amazing experience.

Unique Vacation Ideas That Will Lower Your Travel Costs

Unique Vacation Ideas That Will Lower Your Travel Costs

Whether you are planning a weekend break or a long vacation out of the city, travel costs are among some of the greatest concerns. Here are some of the unique vacation ideas that will lower your travel costs without compromising your travel experience.

Book Flights to the Closest Airport to Your Destination

Before you book a flight for a trip, make sure that it will dock at the nearest airport to your destination. This will ensure that you do not spend more on moving from the airport to your hotel or wherever you intend to spend time during your vacation.

Consider Using Public Transport to Move Around

Using taxis and other means of private transport for airport transfers and moving around can be expensive for some people. To cut down on travel costs, use trains, buses, trams and other means of public transport.

Book Cruises in the Last Minute or Far in Advance

If you are planning a cruise vacation, one of the best ways to avoid paying more is last minute booking. Most cruise liners offer amazing last minute deals just to fill up their cabins. As a result, booking in the last minute can see you pay quite less. Additionally, cruises offer pretty low fares for bookings that are made one year or several months in advance. This trend applies to several tour companies.

Make the Most of the Hand Luggage Allowance

The extra baggage that you carry can impact huge travel costs. There is no weight limit for hand luggage. Therefore, make sure that your hand luggage is well stuffed with heavy items. Put the lighter items in a checked in bag to avoid the additional costs that are impacted by bags or suit cases that go over the recommended weight limits.

Think Outside the Box

There are many vacation destinations across the world all of which provide incredible experiences. Instead of sticking to the common trends, look for cheaper alternatives. For instance, if most people visit a popular destination in summer, choose to go during winter or spring. Travelling against the prevailing trends can save you more money.

There are many ways to explore the world without incurring huge travel costs. These ideas might just be what you are looking for to enjoy a great travel experience without incurring hefty expenses.

 

A Guide for Traveling to Mass Gatherings

There are things that you should consider when traveling to mass gatherings. Mass gatherings are large crowds of people that collect at a particular location for a purpose. Examples of mass gatherings include sporting events, political rallies, concerts, religious observances, and festivals.

Generally, mass gatherings pose health risks to travelers. That’s because they bring large crowds of people to small spaces. This facilitates spread of prevalent infectious diseases. There are also higher injury risks in crowded places. And healthcare resources are not always able to meet the healthcare needs of all people in mass gatherings.

Important Considerations

There important things that you should consider whenever you travel to mass gatherings, whether locally or internationally. Essentially, these are the characteristics of the gatherings and possible health risks.

Here are the major factors to consider:

  • Local diseases- Take time to find out more about prevalent diseases in the local area. What diseases pose a risk to people that assemble at your destination and what are the best ways to avoid them?
  • Climate- When traveling to a mass gathering at a place with very cold or very hot climate, consider the best ways to avoid cold-or heat-related illnesses.
  • Crowd density- When people in a gathering are packed closely, the risk of injury is higher. Therefore, prepare accordingly.
  • Crowd characteristics- The purpose of a mass gathering, crowd age bracket, and whether alcohol and drugs will be used influence violence risk.

Taking Precaution

One of the most important precautionary measures to take is talking to a travel medicine expert. Ideally, make an appointment with this expert at least a month before the trip. A travel medicine expert will provide medicines or vaccines that will protect you from possible illnesses.

Other precautions to take include:

  • Staying up-to-date with routine immunization
  • Avoiding most crowded places or places with limited exits
  • Being careful when in places where people use drugs and alcohol
  • Paying attention to the nearest emergency exit and medical facility
  • Avoiding gatherings that can promote violence

Knowing the risks that you face when traveling to mass gathering is essential. Therefore, take time to conduct extensive research before you travel to a mass gathering.

A Guide for Traveling to Hot Climate Areas

Traveling to hot climate areas makes some people sick. This problem is common among people that are not used to heat. Young children, elderly persons, and individuals with chronic illnesses are at a higher risk of getting sick when they travel to hot climate areas.

However, even healthy and young people can also get sick when they participate in heavy or strenuous physical activities when they travel to hot climate destinations. That’s why it’s important to know how to prevent or avoid heat-related illnesses, injuries, or even death when you travel to hot climate areas.

Steps for Preventing Illnesses and Injuries when Traveling to Hot Climate Areas

Among the steps to take to prevent injuries and illnesses when traveling in hot climates include:

  • Drinking fluids in plenty
  • Wearing lightweight, loose, and light-colored clothing as well as sunscreen
  • Scheduling outdoor activities when its cooler outside
  • Resting more often and trying to stay under a shade while outdoors
  • If you intend to engage in strenuous activities when you travel to high climate areas, try to make your body adjust by exercising at least an hour per day in a hot area before you leave.

Generally, overheating causes heat exhaustion. This is also called heatstroke. Symptoms of heatstroke include profuse sweating, excessive thirst, confusion, dizziness, nausea and headache. If you or a person that you are traveling with starts to show these symptoms, take appropriate action immediately.

Basically, when a person develops any of these symptoms, it’s wise to get away from the sun or hot area immediately. Fan the body to cool it off and drink water. It’s important to note that heatstroke is life-threatening. In fact, it’s a medical emergency. Therefore, seek medical attention immediately if these symptoms persist even after trying to cool off the body and drinking water.

A Guide for Traveling to High Altitude Areas

A friend of mine that owns a San Antonio Nightclub once gave me this talk about traveling to high altitude areas come with risks that are associated with low levels of oxygen that are found there. Essentially, low oxygen levels can cause problems to travelers that travel to destinations that are above 8,000 feet above the sea level.

Ascend Gradually

One of the best ways to avoid the effects of low oxygen level in high altitude areas is to ascend gradually. If you do not ascend gradually, you risk getting sick if you travel to a high altitude area and sleep there.

Basically:

  • Don’t move from a low altitude area to sleep to an area that is 9,000 feet above the sea level in a day. Instead, spend some days at an area that is between 8,000 and 9000 feet above the sea level before you proceed to an area whose altitude is higher than this. This allows the body time to acclimatize to low levels of oxygen.
  • Do not increase sleeping altitude by more than 1600 feet per day when you reach areas that are above 9000 feet. Whenever you ascend 3300 feet, spend a day without climbing further.
  • Don’t engage in heavy exercises or drink alcohol for at least 48 hours after arriving at an area whose altitude is above 8000 feet.
  • Consider taking a single day trip to an area of a higher altitude as an alternative. Taking a day trip to an area of a higher altitude and sleeping to an area of a lower altitude is less risky.

There are times when the itinerary does not permit gradual ascent. In that case, ask your doctor to prescribe medication that prevents altitude illnesses. It’s also important that you familiarize yourself with signs of altitude illnesses. This will enable you to take appropriate steps towards preventing altitude illnesses from becoming severe if they affect you.

Bear in mind the fact that many high altitude travel destinations are mostly in remote areas with poor medical care access. As such, preventing altitude illnesses is better than waiting to get sick and struggle to get emergency treatment.

A Guide for Travelers with Chronic Illnesses

Travel is generally relaxing, exciting and rewarding. However, travelers with chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and asthma face some challenges whenever they travel abroad. However, with careful preparation and planning, travelers with chronic illnesses can have enjoyable and safe trips.

If you or a loved one has a chronic illness, it’s wise that you visit a travel medicine expert at least 4 weeks before you travel. Let the expert know your condition and guide you accordingly in preparing for the trip. It’s important to note that there are chronic illnesses that weaken the immune system. As such, you need to prepare for your trip adequately.

Get Adequate Medicines

Your travel medicine specialist may recommend that you get specific medicines and medical supplies before you travel. For instance, the specialist can recommend that you get glucose test strips, insulin needles, or asthma inhalers. You might need these on regular basis or during emergencies.

In that case, make sure that you have adequate supplies that will last throughout the trip. It’s also wise to carry a little extra supply just in case you happen to delay your return. If you plan to be away a little longer, ask your doctor how you can access medicines and other supplies while away.

When packing, be careful to ensure that you pack all medical supplies and medicines in the carry-on luggage. This ensures that you won’t be stuck without medicines or medical supplies in case you lose your suitcase. Also carry your medicines in the original bottles. And, don’t leave the original prescriptions.

Get Adequate Traveler Insurance

Travelers with chronic illnesses should have three travel types of insurance.

These are:

  • Travel Health Insurance- This covers the cost of healthcare that you receive in a foreign country. It’s important to note that you may have an ordinary health insurance but it might not cover your overseas healthcare.
  • Trip Cancellation Insurance- This insurance covers the cost of a trip when you cancel or reschedule it due to a sickness.
  • Medical Evacuation Insurance- This covers transportation cost to a high-quality healthcare facility in case of an emergency. This insurance is very important when traveling to remote or rural areas.

Additional Preparation

Before embarking on a trip, travelers with chronic conditions should plan on getting care oversees in case they need it. Essentially, it’s wise to carry a note or card that provides information about the chronic condition including food and drug allergies. What’s more, carry a health kit that indicates everything required to manage the chronic illness and other items necessary to ensure a healthy and safe trip. Feel free to check out one of many travel sites I use to book fares, click here.