New York, Nov 3: Traveling away from home can be, equally scary or delightful. On the one hand, it can mean leaving the comforts of home and security of knowing the area you are in.
To simplify the packing process, try to pack clothing in only one or two colors. For example, you could pack only blue and khaki skirts and pants and only shirts that are shades of blue and khaki. This technique ensures that everything you pack coordinates with everything else, so you will never have a problem finding something to wear on your trip.
For a stress-free vacation, make sure people can get in touch with you. Take your cell phone with you and keep it charged. Bring your laptop with you if you know you will have an internet connection where you are staying. In case of emergency, people can let you know what is going on and you won't have any bad surprises when you come back.
If you're planning on taking a cell phone with you on your trip, make sure to call your cell phone provider to ask them about roaming charges. The familiarity of your cell phone may make you feel better, but it may cost you a lot more to use it on foreign soil. A good alternative is buying a local SIM card and using it while you're there.
Young children benefit from having their own personal bag when traveling. A small backpack is fine and the more choice they have in what to put into it the more entertained they will be on the trip. Always take pencils, paper, and crayons. Tuck in a map of your destination, maybe a hand held video game, a set of ear phones, and a snack or too. Another invaluable inclusion in these bags is a package of baby wipes.
Have your airline contact you in the event of any changes to your flight schedules. Most airlines have free programs where you can receive calls or text messages if your flight changes, which will come in handy if you are running late or experiencing difficulties with travel arrangements. Just call and ask them to set it up!
Join travel-centric social websites and forums. Getting connected with fellow travelers is a great way to get ready for your trips. You'll find out about attractions you might not otherwise have known about.
After deciding where you would like to travel, compare the prices offered by many booking engines online for your hotel rooms and flights directly with the companies themselves. Although many booking engines do offer reduced or eliminated transaction fees, you will often get a better deal if you speak directly with the hotels or airlines. You will also receive better customer service.
If you are going to travel to another country you will need to get a passport. This can take some time so it is best to prepare in advance. You should be prepared to answer questions, bring in legal documents to prove who you are, and plan to wait a few weeks or more for the passport to be ready for you to travel with.
When traveling with a baby or a toddler, try not to make too strict of a schedule. A child this age follows their own schedule and you might not be able to do the things that you had planned to do. By being open about the schedule, you will get a greater satisfaction from your trip.
When you visit one of America's National Parks, you should go to the Visitor's Center upon arriving. You will find the newest information concerning the park. Park rangers will share with you any safety hazards, weather concerns, wildlife notices or closures. Visiting the Visitor's Center will assure you have a more enjoyable visit.
When you are traveling overseas, try searching for souvenirs in unusual places. It has become increasingly difficult to find souvenirs that were made at the place you are visiting. Try looking in supermarkets, stationery shops and hardware stores. You will find things that people in the area actually use and the packaging will be unique to your destination.
Social networking sites can serve as wonderful resources while you're traveling. A quick Tweet or Facebook status update asking such questions as: Where's a great place for ice cream in New York? or Which coffee shop should I check out in Rome? can provide you with a wealth of instant information.
If you are traveling in a car, bring a roadside geology book with you. They have a variety of maps, mileage logs and geologic primers that will make your trip a little more interesting. They also contain beautiful collections of photographs that will make the scenery around you come to life.
Don't be afraid to eat outside while traveling on vacation. Grab a sheet from the hotel; you can use it as a picnic blanket or a table cloth. Pick a location that you have been wanting to visit and get take-out from a local restaurant. Enjoy having a leisurely lunch or dinner in a beautiful place with your family.
In countries that you travel to, be aware of the cultural view of how questions are answered. In some places, especially India and Asia, it can be considered very rude to tell someone that you don't know the answer to their question. Others may simply answer yes to any question asked in English. Pay attention to doubtful body language.
As was mentioned earlier in this article, the success of a trip is often determined before you even leave. Keep the helpful hints you read here, in mind, as you prepare for your next journey. With this advice at your disposal, you're likely to create trips that you return from, with smiles.