Advice for a First Time Traveler

First timers are usually the most excited travelers! But they’re also the most nervous because it’s their first time and they don’t know quite what to expect and prepare. Here is a guide for first time travelers:

1. Know Your Budget:
If you’re a first time traveler, you’ll benefit a lot from planning early. First take a look at your bank account and determine what the budget is. You don’t want to plan a vacation only to realize later you can’t afford it. One of the advantages of planning early is that you can pick up extra jobs for some extra cash.

2. Select Your Destination:
For a first time traveler, we would suggest nothing too far. If you can first travel locally then that would be a great first time experience. If you’re traveling internationally, we’d suggest choosing a country where English is spoken or at least understood. First time travelers often select a destination which has a friend or a relative living close by in case they run into some trouble.

3. Buy A Cheap Ticket:
Buying early and buying online is the best way to find a cheap ticket. Don’t buy the first ticket you see. Airlines change fares constantly so check multiple times a week. Use different websites to compare fare prices. Once you find a reasonable deal, bag that bargain quickly.

4. When To Fly:
Flying midweek is cheaper than flying on weekends. Taking an indirect route to your destination, with layovers, will be cheaper than a direct flight. You’ll also find cheap tickets for flights from smaller airports.

5. Book Your Accommodation:
Research online the accommodation options offered at your destination. Hotels tend to be more expensive so a lot of travelers prefer a B&B or a hostel. Hostels are especially popular among young folks. You’ll meet all sorts of interesting people there from across the world.

6. Airport Tips:
Don’t wear too many clothes as it will take you more time at security check to peel off the layers. Use the airport toilet before you board the flight. Don’t stand up as soon as they announce boarding; You’ll be standing a long time. The plane won’t leave without you and nobody will take your seat.

7. Travel Comfortably:
If you’re traveling business or first-class then you’ll be very comfortable. However, if you’re flying economy, there are a few things you can do for a pleasant journey. Definitely buy a travel pillow. Or a leg hammock. If you’re a picky eater, you’re more unlikely to like plane food. Bring your own food for the journey.

8. Meeting Immigration Officer:
Once you’ve arrived, immediately take out your passport and other documents required for immigration check.

9. Keep Safe:
As you explore your destination, be very vigilant of your surroundings to avoid pickpockets and thugs. Use a money belt when you’re out and about. Stick to crowded areas. Never walk alone at night. Don’t keep your belongings on you at all times. Keep them locked up in your hotel.

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Tips To Help You Plan A Fulfilling Cruise

Cruises are some of the most exciting vacations you can choose to enjoy. They offer unbeatable value because you do not have to think about constant transportation needs from place to place and neither do you have to pay costly airfares to your destination. The cruises give you the chance to enjoy refreshing sea air helping you relax and simply enjoy the warm ocean breezes whenever. With so many ports scattered around the world, you can place a cruise travel to visit areas that you have always wanted to visit.

If you love water and water activities, then cruises will prove to be most rewarding to you. But then to enjoy the most pleasant experience you still need to plan properly for your cruise. When everything is in order from the initial stages, then you are bound to enjoy a fulfilling vacation on a ship.

1. Know the number of people cruising with you

If it is just a few of you, then planning should be easy, but you will need a lot more planning and coordination when you plan to travel with more family members and friends. If you are bringing children along, then you need to make sure that the cruise package has plenty of activities for them too. You can plan for a private kind of cruises or you can choose to pay for cruises that accommodate lots of other people headed the same direction you are. The important thing is to choose what works for you and the people you are tagging along.

2. Choose the best cruise length

Cruise packages differ in length and the vacation time you have available should help you select the length that is most suitable. A cruise can be only a few days or you can choose one that goes for a week and more. A weekend cruise can be a great choice for those with little time to spare. With so many destinations and packages, you should be able to plan a cruise length that you can afford and enjoy to the fullest.

3. Pick the best stateroom

People have different preferences when it comes to cruises and your stateroom choices should be guided by your vacation preferences. For instance, if what you dream of is lounging in a private balcony as you enjoy the gracious tropical views, then a balcony stateroom is the ideal selection. Couples can cruise in a suite or a penthouse to get the most from the cruise vacation. If you are a little pressed on a budget, then you can always settle for an inside stateroom. Some cruise packages can offer you additions such as 24 hour butler for your luxury experience.

4. Consider onboard activities

Even when you are going on a romantic cruise vacation, you will definitely need activities to fill your time on board. Find out what activities you will find on-board and how exciting they will make your cruise. Spa services, wine tasting, bingo, culinary demonstrations, live entertainments and others are some of the most popular on most cruises.

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8 Essential Travel Tips For Safety

Travelling can be exciting and frightening at the same time. When you are travelling to some destination for the first time, follow these ten essential travel safety tips to make sure that you have the safe and happy journey.

Select Your Ground Transportation Sensibly

When you are travelling in a rickshaw, taxi or bus check with the companies that the mode of transportation is safe, try to avoid travelling in less reliable transportation like a rickshaw. When you are driving yourself, check that the car which you have rent is functioning properly always wear your seatbelt while driving.

Check With The Government Department

You know you can gather all the safety information about any country from the state department. You can visit their website and get accurate details about any country where you are visiting. You can find all kinds of information from types of crime, vaccinations, travel warning. You can register with them so in case if there is any natural disaster or civil unrest you can come back home immediately.

Review The Hotel Escape Route

Let’s be truthful when we check in our hotel room; we are more interested in seeing the facilities and the view from our room, rather than reading the security map placed behind the door. But before you get settled we recommend that you read the emergency escape routes, because in case if there is an emergency then you will be glad to know where to head out from.

Leave An Emergency Contact

Going on a relaxing vacation alone seems to be fun, but that doesn’t mean that you disappear for the world. Leave your contact number, where you are travelling to which hotel you are staying at and when will you be back with a trusted friend or family member; try to contact him or her once every day. That way if something unusual happens with you they will know.

Scan Your Important Documents

Before you head for your travel destination, it is best that you scan your passport, identification card and driving license card you can save it on your smartphone or email it to yourself. This way if you are out and you need to show the passport which is at the hotel then you can show the scanned one.

Confirm Visitors With Hotel Reception

You are in your hotel room, and there is a knock at the door, somebody from the housekeeping is there to clean your room. Before you allow the person in, call the reception and ask them if they have sent anyone from the housekeeping, you never know a thief can enter your room pretending to be from maintenance dept.

Don’t Show Off Your Cash

Keep your valuables like jewellery and cash in your hotel safe or in your purse, while paying off your bills don’t leave huge tips or show off your money. Although when you are travelling there is a strong urge to take pictures with your smartphone, try not to take it out often as there are many thieves around who love to steal cell phones from people.

Keep A Backup Car Gear

When you are driving your car or rent one for a road trip, then make sure that you have packed an emergency car kit. This emergency kit should include flashlights, battery, first aid kit, blankets, bottled water and canned food, the backup battery for phone, a tire gauge and snow shovel.

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Top 10 Places To Visit For A Winter Vacation

Winter vacation comes in many forms in Europe. In the polar north there is serious snow and sunless week while you will find the sun lingering in the mild Mediterranean, and cozy cafe culture and the spirit of Christmas in the middle. It’s an inspiring time to visit great metropolis and charming villages: with fewer queues you can fit more into your itinerary, and low-priced off-season accommodations make wallet-friendly travel. Through Europe’s rail network, you can explore the countries in your free time, getting to know the locals who deal with their daily business away from the hectic summer tourist season.

1. Rovaniemi, Finland

The handfuls of Christmas clichés characterize Rovaniemi, the “official” residence of Santa Claus. Everyone’s favorite bearded man hangs in an atmospheric grotto of the Arctic Circle, and it’s free to visit (but the photos are another story). Snow and reindeer provide a festive spirit, while the Arktikum museum gives an idea of life in these latitudes. It is a nice place to be for winter vacation

Tip: Finnish thermometers have more numbers below 0 ° C than above, so wear serious winter clothing.

2. Christmas Markets, Germany And Austria

December sees these romantic historic markets emerging throughout Germany and other nations of Central Europe. Expect cute stalls selling everything from gingerbread to sleigh bells and lots of joy, toasting with a glass of glühwein warming up.

Tip: Famous markets in Cologne, Vienna and Munich attract tourist crowds, but finding smaller cities is rewarding.

3. Abisko, Sweden

Up in Northern Europe on a train, Abisko in Lapland is for winter fans. The sun does not rise for several weeks in December and January, but that darkness makes it one of the best places in the world to see the majestic northern lights. Other attractions include cross-country skiing along the national park trails and husky mushing.

Tip: Stop in Kiruna and see the famous Icehotel.

4. Athens, Greece

It’s a real downer trying to Photoshop 500 people out of their Parthenon photo to be awarded, but in winter it’s not a problem. All the tensions of summer – crowding, tourist prices, intense heat, queues, air pollution – disappear more or less. It is the best time to explore the ancient heritage of the country and get to experience the local culture.

Tip: By all means do some island hopping, but most accommodations close during winter vacation.

5. Copenhagen, Denmark

For the European fairy tale winter, it is hard to beat the home of Hans Christian Andersen. Forget about the exaggerated little mermaid and head to the cozy bars and cafes of the city to see the snow fluttering outside. In the heart of the city, the Tivoli amusement park of the nineteenth century is a romantic and kitschy delight around Christmas, with touching illuminations and glogging cups that warm the body.

Tip: Go out for a meal in Noma, considered by many to be the best restaurant in the world (reservations can be filled quickly, so try to book several months in advance)

6. Budapest, Hungary

The pair of hand skating, breath-clouded in the frozen air – there is no better place for it than the picturesque central park of the Hungarian capital Varosligeti Mujegpalya, with its huge outdoor track. Do you feel cold afterwards? Budapest is famous for its ornate thermal baths.

Tip: At night look for a ‘bar ruin’ – an artfully atmospheric beverage place created in a building once abandoned.

7. Jasna, Slovakia

Slovakia offers high quality skiing at affordable prices. The accommodations and food are reasonable, and there is a friendliness that is missing from some of the snootier alpine tracks. Jasna is the best resort in Slovakia, with long descents flanked by snow-covered spruce trees, located in the rugged Tatras mountains.

Tip: Direct flights to Slovakia can be expensive, so do not make this an entry point to Europe.

8. Andalusia, Spain

Parts of Andalusia are further down south than the African coast, so there is a mild temperature in the winter. Accommodation is cheap and crowds are smaller in such prominent places as the Alhambra in Granada or Seville Cathedral. In addition, the tapas and nightlife in the cities are as attractive as ever.

Tip: head to the Sierra Nevada near Granada if you want snow sports action.

9. Transylvania, Romania

You can not visit Dracula’s lair on a sunny day with lambs bellowing in the fields, right? Try steel gray sky, bare trees and a handful of snow. Brasov and Sighisoara, two hours away by rail, are magnificent medieval towns with various connections to Vlad Tepes, historical Dracula, although it is doubtful that you have set foot in its so-called castle.

Tip: Bram Stoker never visited Romania, so do not expect many parallels with the book or the movies.

10. Venice, Italy

Hauntingly beautiful and somewhat strange, Carnevale from Venice in February is a European highlight. Elaborate costumes and creepy masks bring the city’s colorful history of the canal to life. Disguised dances are expensive things, but you can have a ball enjoying the free events with a mask bought on the street, but be prepared for epic crowding.

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5 Tips For Booking A Hotel On The Cheap

Everyone is aware of the fact that one can easily save money if they opt for a budget hotel. But sometimes you just crave to have a five-star experience. Luckily, there are a few ways through which you can book a hotel for cheap without making any sacrifices in your choice for accommodations.

Here are five tips for saving money and booking a hotel room for cheap, no matter where you stay.

Time Of Your Booking

Time is essence in this case. On any day prices can vary as per the hotel’s liking if they think they will be able to fill all the rooms for the night. Your best time to book is before 24 hours of your stay; these are the times when hotels keep changing their prices just to fill their vacant rooms. But this creates a lot of uncertainty, and it’s not a wise thing to do if you are traveling to an unfamiliar place.

Revisit The Same Hotel

If you are a regular traveler and you visit the same location frequently, then you should book the same hotel as you can get great deals or offers. If the same hotel has a chain of hotels around the globe even then you can score great discounts quickly. Just remember that when you book your room mention that you have previously stayed at the same hotel. When the hotel sees your reputation as a returning customer, they will offer you a better rate or perhaps give you an upgraded room.

Make Use Of Deals And Coupons

You can save money when you book your hotel from websites that are hotel booking agencies, but if you want to save more money on your accommodation expenditure, it’s best you search for online deals and coupons before booking a hotel. Many money-saving sites offer deals and coupons for different hotels and motels. It’s always wise to make use of such offers and save as much on your travel expenses.

City Breaks Are Economical In Summer

Keep in mind the season in which you are planning to travel. City breaks usually are less expensive in summers, as there are fewer events, less business travelers and a huge migration towards the coast.

Travel Solo

If you are traveling solo – then take full advantage of it. Many hotels assume that there will be two persons staying so they offer a good discount for the room. This way you can enjoy a double bed suite all by yourself.

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Private Ephesus Tours – Some Tips

If you are into ancient cities, Ephesus should be one of the top destinations on your list. After more than a century of excavation, Ephesus’ structures have become the most popular tourist attractions in Europe.

This city was established in the 10th century BC. It was the Classical Greek period and saw a lot of development after it was taken over by the Roman Republic. According to estimates, the city had a population of 56,000 residents. For more about private Ephesus tours, follow the tips below.

1. Get Some Travel Advice

First of all, before you head for the city, don’t forget to know the travel warnings. The local authorities will provide you with the required information before you take your next steps.

2. Do Your Homework

According to experts, Ephesus had a population of around 56,000 residents when it was under the rule of the Romans. So far, just 20% of the old city has gone through excavation. On the other hand, the uncovered area consists of 4 sq km. However, it has one of the largest ruins of the world.

If you want to get the most out of your visit, you may want to plan your route prior to your arrival or you may miss out on some great sights. Ideally, you should hire a travel guide so you know what to see.

3. Get There In the Morning

What is the best time to see the great city? Well, you should start in the morning if you don’t want to encounter a lot of other visitors. You also have another option at your disposal: you can choose to go there in the mid afternoon. At this time, visitors start to leave and you can visit the destinations peacefully.

4. Go For The Most Popular Attractions

When you get there, you should go for the primary sites without killing time. The major sites include the Library of Celsus, the harbor street and the Ephesus amphitheatre. So, by visiting the most popular sites, you can avoid the crowds and take as many photos as you want.

5. The Lower Gate

It’s a good idea to start off at the Lower Gate, which is near the Selcuk. This way it will be easier for you to get back and forth. Actually, the Lower Gate is near other sites, such as Ayasoluk Castle, Isa Bey Mosque, the Temple of Artemis and the Ephesus Archaeological Museum. If you are on a budget, you should go for the public transport.

6. Take a Lot of Water With You

It’s very hot and dry in Ephesus. Therefore, you may want to take plenty of water with you. However, if you run out of water, you can spend some bucks and buy some water inside the city. You can buy water at juice bars and small cafes located near each entrance close to the toilets.

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Paris Tour – Some Useful Tips

Paris is culturally rich, beautiful and amazing. If you want to visit Paris, you have to do your homework before you pack your bag and leave for Paris. The tips below will help you get ready for the tour.

1. Parisians Are Not Rude

While you may come across some rude Parisians during your stay in the city, but this doesn’t mean Parisians are rude. Most people think that they won’t be treated well in France, but the reality is different. Not all French have hatred for outsiders. The fact of the matter is that the younger generation of Paris love to talk to Americans.

2. Learn a little bit of French

You don’t have to take French classes prior to leaving for France, but learning a couple of commonly used phrases won’t cost you an arm and a leg. Usually, the French admire people who know a little bit of French. Besides, learning a few common French phrases will make it easier for you to communicate with the locals.

3. The Metro

The big map with various lines may sound weird to you, but the Metro is very easier to master. Since it is well connected, you will find that some places are not located near a metro stop. But after a couple of trips, you can find out how to reach any place in the city without any problem.

4. Outfits

What should you wear in Paris? Well, you may want to be comfortable when walking around the city and you can do so wearing casual outfits. Paris is known as the fashion capital and the people in Paris are fond of wearing fashionable outfits. So, you can buy some casual outfits that are commonly worn in Paris. Don’t worry. They won’t be too expensive.

5. The Neighborhoods

Paris consists of 20 neighborhoods, and the city is divided by the popular river known as the Seine River. The neighborhoods are located in a circular pattern. Often, you will hear people mention a certain restaurant or store located in the 12th. Some of the neighborhoods are known as Montmartre, Latin Quarter and Marais.

It is recommended that you get a Paris map as it will make it easier for you to get around and understand where things are located.

6. Not Everything is Expensive in Paris

Just like other cities, Paris also has its share of expensive stuff. However, this doesn’t mean that you will go bankrupt doing shopping over there. You can use a few tips to save money if you are traveling on a budget. For instance, you can eat at cheap restaurants in Paris. Moreover, walking around this beautiful city and watching people won’t cost you a dime.

So, these are 6 tips that you may want to consider when planning your tour of Paris. Hopefully, these tips will make it easier for you to enjoy your tour while saving a good deal of money. Keep in mind that Paris is full of mesmerizing sites but you don’t want to be overcharged due to your unawareness.

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