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Travel Tips and Sites to Check Out

January 30, 2010

Staircase
I distilled these tips from the most recent issue of Budget Travel and definitely plan on taking this advice on future trips.

  1. For trips that involve multiple destinations, pack your bags for the family by destination rather than by person. So if you are staying in one place for two nights and another location for three, dedicate a bag each to the two different locations instead having each family member pack their own separate bag for the entire trip. This way you only need to unpack one bag at each destination rather having each family member unpack a separate suitcase every time you check in.
  2. Keep a travel journal and send postcards from your destination to enhance your long-term memory of your travels. Studies have shown that when you write during your travels it assists with increasing retention of your travel memories and experiences. A good way to get started is to keep a journal leading a few weeks into your trip where you can detail out your packing checklist, sites to see and destinations. Once you are on your trip or vacation send postcards using a who, what, where, when and why approach to briefly summarize what you have been up to and share your experiences with your friends and family.
  3. Have each person travelling with you enter in their emergency contact information into each others cell phone. This is one of those just-in-case measures but having everyone share their name of emergency contact, contact info, date of birth etc. and keeping it available in your respective cell phones means that should you need this info it will be there when you need it. It only takes a few minutes and should provide peace of mind. I would be careful to limit this just to names and contact info and exclude things like social security numbers or other information that could be used by identity thieves should a cell phone become lost or stolen.

Here are a few sites dedicated to finding the right/best hotel for you. Many travel search engines don’t provide you with a lot of information  about the logistics of your accommodations. Each of these sites serves a specific function in helping you determine whether the hotel is right for you.

  • Hotelicopter.com – Hotel search that includes a rating system that connects to your facebook friends so you can get reviews from sources you trust. The only limitation here is that it only works to the extent that your friends have actively reviewed hotels through the site.
  • SeeYourHotel.com – This is a location based hotel search tool so you can see a map of where each hotel is located. It provides pin points you can select to track which hotels you have considered.
  • TVTrip.com – The video reviews on this site let you virtually tour the hotels so you can see for yourself what the amenities are.
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