travel tips http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/8106/all en-US 7 Ways to Stay Healthy on Vacation http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-healthy-on-vacation <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-stay-healthy-on-vacation" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happiness_couple_at_the_seaside.jpg" alt="Happiness couple at the seaside" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Heading off on vacation is often the culmination of months of planning and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-save-up-a-big-travel-budget?ref=internal" target="_blank">saving for your travel budget</a>. It's the one time of year when we really get to relax, let our hair down, and enjoy the freedom of being away from work. So why risk wasting all that effort by allowing an unexpected bout of sickness to ruin it?</p> <p>Health dangers are part of nearly every trip, but with proper precautions before and during your travels, it's entirely possible to avoid getting sick on vacation.</p> <h2>1. Get your shots</h2> <p>Your number one priority when heading off on an international vacation should be making sure that you are protected from diseases. First, double check that you are up to date on your routine vaccinations, such as those for Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis (Tdap) and Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR), which may require a booster. Then you need to figure out <a href="https://www.vaccines.gov/travel/" target="_blank">what jabs are necessary</a> for whichever country or countries you are planning to visit.</p> <p>The best way to do this is to make an appointment with your health care provider or a specialized travel clinic, which should be able to advise you on exactly what you need. It's important to leave yourself plenty of time, as some of the shots, such as the vaccination against cholera, require two doses. Also make sure you check if there is any medication you need to take while you are traveling, such as anti-malaria tablets. It's far better to be safe than sorry.</p> <h2>2. Prepare for the plane journey</h2> <p>You don't want to ruin your vacation before it's even begun by arriving at your destination feeling out of sorts, so it's important to make sure you're properly prepared. Long plane journeys are renowned for having a detrimental impact on your health, but even short flights could be hazardous. The effects of air travel on the body range from dehydration and restlessness, to the potentially fatal deep vein thrombosis.</p> <p>Do your best to make sure that you are fully rested in the days leading up to your flight. Consider boosting your immune system by taking some multivitamins, eating healthily the week beforehand, and ensuring that you are fully hydrated when you board the plane. However tempting it may be, particularly if you're a nervous flyer, stay away from the airport bar, as the combination of alcohol and altitude may undo all of your preparation.</p> <h2>3. Avoid tap water</h2> <p>Regardless of your destination, avoiding the local tap water is always a good idea when you go on vacation. There are many locations around the world where it's unsafe to drink the tap water, but even in the countries where it is technically safe, the water may still upset your stomach. This is due to the different balance of minerals and chemicals in the local water, as well as the different purification methods used.</p> <p>The easiest way to avoid any issues arising is to stick to bottled water, but that's both potentially expensive and bad for the environment. If you want a practical and ecological way to steer clear of single use plastic bottles, there are plenty of other options you can consider. There is a huge <a href="http://amzn.to/2t0tgNx" target="_blank">variety of filtration bottles</a> available on the market that get rid of almost 100 percent of microbiological contaminants as well as chlorine, fluoride and heavy metals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eat-these-6-foods-to-stay-healthy-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Eat These 6 Foods to Stay Healthy While Traveling</a>)</p> <h2>4. Wash your hands and use antibacterial gel</h2> <p>Washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water is the most effective way to clean them. This is because it gets rid of dirt that may be harboring germs, and kills the germs themselves. But there isn't always a ready supply of water and soap for this to be a practical option. In these cases, hand sanitizing gel or antibacterial spray is the secret weapon of the savvy vacationer. When used properly, these products kill over 99 percent of bacteria.</p> <p>Always carrying a small bottle of antibacterial liquid around with you is a simple and convenient way to ward off any germs that may have been transferred onto your hands. Don't wait until you arrive at your destination to start. Planes are notoriously unclean environments, so it pays to spray before and after boarding your flight, as well as when you're going to the bathroom. Always wash up before eating, but don't be afraid to use hand sanitizer at regular intervals throughout the day, too. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-items-you-will-never-regret-bringing-on-a-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Items You'll Never Regret Packing on a Trip</a>)</p> <h2>5. Watch what you eat</h2> <p>Food, and specifically the different bacterias found within it, are one of the main causes of people getting sick while they're away. The number one rule to follow when you're eating on vacation is to be cautious. Of course you want to sample the delicious local delicacies &mdash; it's one of the pleasures of traveling. But try to ease your stomach into exotic foods rather than immediately bombarding it with all of these new and exciting flavors. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Eat Street Food Safely While Traveling</a>)</p> <p>Be aware of where you eat and the establishment's hygiene standards, whether it's a hotel restaurant, or a local street food stall. Food poisoning indiscriminately affects anywhere that has poor practices. To steer clear of food that will make you ill, always make sure it's freshly prepared and piping hot, avoid raw food, and don't eat anything prepared with tap water that isn't boiled. A great way to get the lowdown is to ask around for recommendations on which places are good, or do some research online.</p> <h2>6. Beat the mosquitoes</h2> <p>Despite their diminutive size, mosquitoes are some of the most dangerous creatures on the planet. At best, they'll give you an annoying bite that will lead to a lot of itching and discomfort, or even a fever, which in itself could ruin your vacation. At worst, depending on where you're going, you could end up with any one of a long list of nasty diseases that could be threatening to your health.</p> <p>The only way to completely stop any risk is to not get bitten, so if you're going to a mosquito-heavy area, take plenty of tried and tested repellent, cover up areas of exposed skin, and always sleep under a mosquito net.</p> <h2>7. Take care in the sun</h2> <p>One of the pleasures for many travelers heading overseas is the opportunity to spend some time catching a few rays. But too much fun in the sun can have seriously negative effects on your health. The most common of these is sunburn, but more serious illnesses such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke aren't to be taken lightly. In extreme instances, they can even lead to death.</p> <p>If you overdo it in the sun, you could end up spending days on your sickbed recovering, so it's best to know your limits and take it easy. Use a suitable strength of sunscreen, don't spend too much time directly in the sun, avoid strenuous activity at midday and drink plenty of water to keep hydrated. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-easy-health-and-fitness-tricks-for-travelers?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Health and Fitness Tricks for Travelers</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-healthy-on-vacation">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-healthy-habits-to-take-to-work">10 Healthy Habits to Take to Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-easy-ways-to-fix-your-whole-life-this-summer">11 Easy Ways to Fix Your Whole Life This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway">How to Make Sure You&#039;re Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling">How to Eat Street Food Safely While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Travel health tips healthy eating healthy habits lifestyle sick sick on vacation Stay Healthy travel tips Tue, 27 Jun 2017 08:30:14 +0000 Nick Wharton 1971631 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Make Sure You're Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mid_adult_couple_shopping_using_laptop_and_credit_card.jpg" alt="Mid adult couple shopping using laptop and credit card" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've ever explored different ways to save on travel, you've probably stumbled on <a href="http://tracking.groupon.com/r?tsToken=US_AFF_0_201409_1663122_0&amp;url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.groupon.com%2Foccasion%2Fhot-travel-deals%3Fz%3Dskip%26utm_medium%3Dafl%26utm_campaign%3D201409%26mediaId%3D1663122%26utm_source%3DGPN" target="_blank">Groupon Getaways</a>. Like traditional Groupon deals, Groupon Getaways promise huge discounts on hotels and hotel-and-airfare packages if purchased within a limited time frame.&nbsp;(See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-best-vacation-deal-websites?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Best Vacation Deal Websites</a>)</p> <p>It's easy to see their allure. Groupon Travel recently advertised a one-week&nbsp;Italy vacation with airfare for $999&nbsp;per person. It featured round-trip flights to Naples from major cities like Chicago and New York, and six or seven nights at a hotel in the ancient town of Paestum, south of Naples.</p> <p>That sounds like a good deal, but is it? Let's explore this Groupon travel package and others to find out.</p> <h2>Deconstructing a Groupon&nbsp;Getaway</h2> <p>Before we can decide if this is a good deal, it helps to know what exactly was included. Here's what the Groupon travel website offered with the package.</p> <h3>Flights and transportation</h3> <ul> <li> <p>Round-trip airfare from New York (JFK), Boston (BOS), or Chicago (ORD)</p> </li> <li> <p>Manual shift economy car rental for duration of trip</p> </li> </ul> <h3>Hotel</h3> <ul> <li> <p>A stay of six or seven nights at&nbsp;Hotel Ariston in Paestum</p> </li> </ul> <p>For $99 extra per person, you could also score free breakfast at your hotel daily, along with a Bufala cheese tasting.</p> <p>Read further and you'd see this package came from a company called&nbsp;Great Value Vacations. And while your vacation isn't guided, the company went through the trouble of creating a sample itinerary with suggestions of cities and sights to see &mdash; stops in Rome to see Piazza Navona and Trevi Fountain, for example, along with tips on seeing the buried city of Pompeii and the unparalleled beauty of Capri and Anacapri. Of course, you'd have to pay out of pocket to see all those sights, just as you would if you'd booked your airfare and hotel yourself.</p> <p>In the ad's fine print it said that the Groupon was limited to one per person, yet the price was based on two people sharing a room and there was a $500 fee to travel solo.</p> <p>Another detail to note: The fine print said that &quot;additional fees apply to select departure dates.&quot; And while there were a ton of departure dates available, they weren't flexible at all. Worse, only two of the departure dates and cities offered came with the advertised price tag of $999. To fly out of Chicago in July, for example, costs $1,724 per person instead of $999. Out of New York in September on select dates? That would set you back $1,249.</p> <p>So much for that.</p> <p>Out of curiosity, I checked for a similar trip on Expedia using random dates this summer and fall. While I didn't find any hotel packages that included a stay in Paestum, here's what I did find: Airfare, hotel, and rental car packages from Chicago to Naples started at $759 for a week in September. Similar packages from Boston to Rome in October started at about $525.</p> <p>Plugging in a bunch of different dates and cities, I found dozens of similar packages for less than $1,000 &mdash; and sometimes a lot less. Best of all, these packages allow you to pick your dates and your hotel instead of locking you in.</p> <p>So, while $999 per person for a week in Italy with a hotel and rental car seemed like a good deal, it may not be that great after all. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-save-money-on-holiday-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways to Save Money on Travel</a>)</p> <h2>How to evaluate Groupon Getaways</h2> <p>The Italy package is just one example of a sour &quot;deal,&quot; but there are many, many more. There are also plenty of travel packages that <em>are</em> a good deal.</p> <p>For example, Groupon Getaways recently offered a $599 all-inclusive trip to Negril, Jamaica from certain cities. If you departed from Atlanta on June 1, you would have paid $599 for round-trip airfare and an all-inclusive stay at the Riu Negril.</p> <p>I checked outside of Groupon, and similar flights started at $570 per person on discount airline Spirit. That was for the flight alone. It would cost another $200 a night to stay at the all-inclusive Hotel Riu Negril. Obviously, this was an awesome deal if you lived near Atlanta or could get there cheaply. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-save-up-a-big-travel-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Save Up a Big Travel Budget</a>)</p> <p>So, how can you sort the good deals from the bad? Consider these tips.</p> <h3>1. Price out Groupon packages to see how much you'll save</h3> <p>The best way to save money with Groupon Getaways is to price out each trip and its components individually. With the Italy itinerary mentioned above, there were scads more affordable options with a lot more flexibility. But, you may not have known that if you didn't do some digging to see how much everything costs.</p> <p>The same can be true when you <em>are </em>getting a good deal. As with the Riu Negril package mentioned above, pricing the components out individually can accurately depict your savings. But you won't know how much you'll save if you never check.</p> <h3>2. Avoid packages with excessive fine print or blackout dates</h3> <p>The big problem with Groupon Getaways is all the fine print. Some only offer the packages on certain dates and from certain airports. Others have so many exclusions it's hard to keep track, or they add a surcharge if you travel alone. Make sure to read all the details so you know what you're getting into.</p> <h3>3. Factor in the costs of getting to a specific airport</h3> <p>If you're considering a Groupon Getaway that includes airfare, make sure to add in the costs of getting to a big city airport. Most of the packages only offer departures from major airline hubs like New York, Chicago, Boston, and Los Angeles. If you live in Boise, Idaho, you'll need to get to one of those airports first. Unfortunately, that costs money, too.</p> <h3>4. Just because&nbsp;it's &quot;on sale&quot; doesn't mean it's a good deal</h3> <p>While this last tip is broader, it's probably the most important. Just because something says it's a deal doesn't mean it will save you money. The Italy vacation referenced above said it had a $1,599 retail value and saved you 38 percent, but it likely wouldn't have. At the end of the day, it's important to do your research and decide for yourself. A little bit of digging can ensure any decision you make is an informed one.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-spring-break-budget-busters-to-avoid">11 Spring Break Budget Busters to Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-useful-items-hotels-usually-provide-for-free">14 Useful Items Hotels Usually Provide for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel flight deals groupon groupon getaway hotels travel travel tips vacation vacation tips Mon, 26 Jun 2017 08:30:18 +0000 Holly Johnson 1971632 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/playa_del_carmen.jpg" alt="Playa del Carmen" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Mexico is filled with gorgeous beach towns that beckon global tourists year-round. The great thing is, many of them are affordable. That's especially true these days for Americans carrying U.S. dollars, since the exchange rate is so attractive now. Here are eight of the most affordable Mexican beach towns to visit, plus why you should go.</p> <h2>1. Loreto</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/shopping_in_loreto_mexico.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Situated on the Baja California Peninsula, Loreto offers more than a cool splash in blue waters. It's also home to the centuries-old church, Misión de Nuestra Señora de Loreto, and prehistoric cave paintings at the Sierra de la Giganta mountain range.</p> <p>Beach-lovers can see pelicans, dolphins, and whales off the coast around Bahía de Loreto National Park. If you come in spring, you may also catch the migration of whales. For those after a little more active vacation, there is plenty of snorkeling and sport fishing, too.</p> <p>Best of all, three-star hotels in Loreto start at just $50 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/caribbean-island-vacations-anyone-can-afford?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Caribbean Island Vacations Anyone Can Afford</a>)</p> <h2>2. Mazatlán</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/mazatlan_mexico_scenic_look_out_point.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Referred to as the Pearl of the Pacific, this resort town boasts 11 miles of boardwalk that promises lovely strolls along the sea. Mazatlán is also known for gorgeous architecture, friendly locals, a rich history, and a world-renowned night life district called Zona Dorada (Golden Zone).</p> <p>A fun to-do list could include visiting the Immaculate Conception Cathedral in the historic part of town, dropping by the Zona Dorada to mingle with fellow tourists, and catching breathtaking sunsets.</p> <p>Like surfing? Mazatlán is known as a surfing haven because of its enormous waves. If you are visiting as a family, you can also take the little ones to the Mazatlán Aquarium.</p> <p>Mazatlán is convenient to get to and offers semitropical weather all year. Plus, you can find three-star hotels starting from $70. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-credit-cards-for-hotel-deals-and-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Hotel Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>3. Todos Santos</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/quiet_each_near_cabo_on_the_pacific_ocean.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Popular with both artists and surfers, Todos Santos is located on Mexico's Baja California Peninsula. History enthusiasts might drop by the local Profesor Néstor Agúndez Martínez Cultural Center while beach-lovers might hang out at surfer-friendly San Pedrito, Los Cerritos, or La Pastora.</p> <p>While surfing is the most popular activity in Todos Santos, it's not the only adventure on the menu: You can go kayaking, camping, fishing, or hiking. You can also take part in an eco-tour.</p> <p>In the winter, Todos Santos is a premier spot to watch the migration of gray whales. And walking through the historic part of town will get you to numerous art galleries.</p> <p>You can find hotels starting at $30, although most three-star hotels cost $90 per night and up. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/once-in-a-lifetime-experiences-ive-earned-with-credit-card-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Once-In-a-Lifetime Experiences I've Earned with Credit Card Rewards</a>)</p> <h2>4. Troncones</h2> <p>Troncones is a beach village 30 minutes away from Zihuatanejo-Ixtapa International Airport. The city is best known for its beaches and four main surf spots: La Saladita, Troncones Point, the Ranch, and La Boca. If surfing isn't your thing, you can still relax on the beautiful beaches with a good book. Animal lovers will also enjoy the many local pelicans and sea turtles.</p> <p>In Troncones, three-star hotels start at around $80 per night.</p> <h2>5. Playa del Carmen</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/playa_del_carmen_tourist_district_mayan_riviera_mexico_shops_restaurants.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Coastal resort town Playa del Carmen is the third largest city of its state, Quintana Roo, with seemingly endless palm trees, coral reefs, nightclubs, and restaurants. While it might be a bit more touristy than the other towns on the list, it makes up for it by its closeness to Cancun's International airport.</p> <p>In Playa del Carmen, you can spend the day diving, snorkeling, or swimming. In addition to its water-related activities, Playa del Carmen is also world famous for its restaurants and night life. At night, catch Mayan dance performances and free salsa classes while perusing the shops on the city's famous strip, 5th Avenue.</p> <p>For warm weather and fewer tourists, you may want to visit in April and May. Three-star hotels near the beach start at $50 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-international-destinations-you-can-visit-for-50-a-day?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 International Destinations You Can Visit for $50 a Day</a>)</p> <h2>6. Puerto Escondido</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/puerto_escondido_mexico_493313786.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Situated along the Pacific coast in the state of Oaxaca, this beach town has become known as a world-class surf destination. But if you&rsquo;re not a surfer, there's still plenty to do. The town features a number of beaches where you can snorkel, swim, fish, and windsurf. And you can always just watch the powerful waves and surfers who ply them from the beach.</p> <p>If you want to soak in a little culture on land, try a Mexican cooking class and trip to the local market. For bustling nightlife, check out the bars at Zicatela beach. Some nights they may even have&nbsp;live music.</p> <p>Three-star hotels start at around $40 a night.(See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Use Travel Rewards Cards to Get Free Trips</a>)</p> <h2>7. La Paz</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/the_public_beach_with_water_slide_in_la_paz_mexico.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The capital of Baja California Sur is one of Mexico's best beach towns. La Paz is filled with lovely beaches, gardens, and parks. The town is also home to an array of seafront restaurants, hotels, and museums.</p> <p>Whether you want to go diving, watch the whales, or enjoy a secluded beach on your own, La Paz has tons to offer. Among La Paz's most famous beaches are Playa Balandra (especially great for kids), Playa el Coromuel, Playa Caimancito, Playa Pichilingue (ideal for camping), and Playa Tecolote, from which you can leave to see the island Espíritu Santo (or the Holy Spirit) &mdash; a Unesco World Heritage site. At any of these famous beaches, you can go kayaking or snorkeling, or simply enjoy the cliffs and inlets.</p> <p>Three-star hotels in La Paz start at just $50 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a>)</p> <h2>8. Sayulita</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sunrise_over_coast_of_sayulita_mexican.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Like many Mexican beach towns, Sayulita is affordable, beautiful, and surfer-friendly. The city also offers delicious seafood along with plenty of activities to keep you occupied.</p> <p>Since the waves are beginner-friendly, Sayulita is a great option if you want to learn how to surf with your kids. If you're after natural beauty and snorkeling opportunities, on the other hand, consider a day trip to nearby Marieta Islands.</p> <p>While in town, drop by Sayulita Fish Taco, a bar offering more varieties of tequila than you can count.</p> <p>Plan on paying $15 per night to stay in a hotel or $115 per night for three-star hotels. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-amazing-hawaiian-resorts-you-can-book-with-rewards-points?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Amazing Hawaiian Resorts You Can Book With Rewards Points</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-that-anyone-can-travel-for-free">7 Ways That Anyone Can Travel for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel budget travel mexican vacation mexico saving money on vacation travel tips tropical destinations Fri, 23 Jun 2017 08:30:13 +0000 Holly Johnson 1971281 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Eat Street Food Safely While Traveling http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/italian_street_food_in_venice.jpg" alt="Italian street food in Venice" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Many people would never dream of buying street food from a stall when traveling, and with the number of horror stories out there, that's understandable. Reports of widespread contamination and severe food-borne illnesses are common. As a result, choosing the right stall can feel like a minefield if you don't know what to look for.</p> <p>I've been seriously ill many times in my eight years of traveling, but in my experience, it's nearly as likely to come from a nice sit down restaurant as from a street food stall.</p> <p>Street stalls are an important part of the culture in many countries, and they are where you'll find some of the most delicious and authentic cuisine. They also happen to be a cheap way to eat well. It pays to be cautious, but there's no need to miss out on street food altogether if you follow a few basic rules. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eat-these-6-foods-to-stay-healthy-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Eat These 6 Foods to Stay Healthy While Traveling</a>)</p> <h2>Only eat at local mealtimes</h2> <p>Wherever you are, spend a little time figuring out what time people tend to eat their meals. One way to do this is to observe the areas that serve street food and make a mental note of when they get busy. You can also ask a local resident for the inside scoop. Once you're armed with the local mealtimes, stick to them rigidly and make sure that the stall you choose is bustling before you start to order.</p> <p>If you arrive before or after peak times, you won't know how long the food ingredients have been sitting around. You want a stall with a high turnover, constantly refreshing their ingredients and swapping out utensils and containers. When it comes to street food, it's always best to follow the crowd.</p> <h2>Look closely at the queue</h2> <p>In almost every other aspect of life, queues are looked at as a tedious and unnecessary waste of time. But if there is not a line of people waiting to order at the stall and you've followed the point above, then you should be questioning why.</p> <p>Put simply, queues mean quality, because people don't stand in line unless they know they're going to get something that's worth waiting for. Consider queues your best friend. They don't just mean that the food will be tasty, but they virtually guarantee that it will be fresh and safe to eat.</p> <p>In areas where competition for street food vendors is high, this applies even more so. Quite often, street food stalls that sell exactly the same dishes will group together in one place. Though it seems counterintuitive, the economies of agglomeration mean that it's actually beneficial for vendors to do this, as a higher volume of similar stalls attracts a higher number of buyers. Don't go rogue and be the person that chooses to save time by heading to the place with no queue. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-secrets-to-eating-great-food-for-cheap-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Secrets to Eating Great Food for Cheap While Traveling</a>)</p> <h2>Watch the preparation of the food</h2> <p>One of the greatest things about street food is the element of theater that comes with it. Watching chefs elaborately toss ingredients in the air with their wok, or chop fresh produce at lightning speed can be as entertaining an experience as eating the food itself. But more important than the open air performance is the fact that watching the preparation means you can plainly see how hygienic their methods are.</p> <p>Take a look at the preparation surfaces that are in use: Are they clean as a whistle or covered in flies? Does the stall owner look like they have decent standards of personal hygiene? Where is the raw food being kept? Is it out in the sun or carefully packed away in a cooler or refrigerator? Watch closely for a few minutes before you make your choice, and if you're not happy with how the food is being prepared, move on. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-14-best-ways-to-cut-food-costs-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">14 Best Ways to Cut Food Costs While Traveling</a>)</p> <h2>If it doesn't taste right, don't continue</h2> <p>When it comes to food, using the sniff and poke test to determine whether something is safe to eat is not a good idea. Just because it smells fine, that doesn't necessarily mean it's not going to be harmful. Food could appear on the surface to be perfectly fine and still be riddled with illness-causing bacteria. That said, if a dish smells or tastes terrible, then you should definitely err on the side of caution and take it as a sign that something is potentially off or rotten.</p> <p>A solid rule of thumb to follow is that if it doesn't seem right, then just don't continue eating it. There's no need to be rude, but you should let the cooks know that something doesn't seem quite right, so they don't pass on contaminated food to other customers. You may have paid for it already, but it's really not worth the risk. You should, quite literally, go with your gut in this instance.</p> <h2>Eat cooked food or peelable food</h2> <p>If it's not cooked, or not peelable, then don't let it pass your lips. In many countries, there are delicacies that are made from raw eggs, raw vegetables, and even raw meat. Though they may be lovely and perfectly safe for those who are used to eating them, don't play Russian roulette with your digestive system. If you are desperate to try one of these dishes, then it's far better to go to a restaurant that you have reference-checked thoroughly beforehand than to take a gamble on the street.</p> <p>Always be sure to check that food is piping hot throughout, as partial heating is a surefire way to encourage bacterial growth. You can always ask for something to be cooked longer if you're unsure. When it comes to fruit, stick to the stuff that's peelable. A removable skin is nature's promise of sterility within.</p> <h2>What to do if the worst does happen</h2> <p>If you do end up getting sick, the first and most important thing to do is remain hydrated by drinking lots of water, because it's essential to replace any fluids you lose when you're sick. Get lots of rest, as it will help your body recover quickly. Remember, most bouts of food poisoning won't last longer than three days. It's not usually necessary to take any medication for sickness or diarrhea and it will ordinarily just run its course naturally.</p> <p>If your symptoms are severe, or they haven't improved after three days, then you should get in touch with a medical professional to seek further help.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway">How to Make Sure You&#039;re Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/technology-hacks-for-the-international-traveler">Technology Hacks for the International Traveler</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year">How to Save an Extra $1,094.86 a Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Travel food poisoning food tips international travel safe travel safety tips street food travel tips Wed, 21 Jun 2017 08:31:05 +0000 Nick Wharton 1969596 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don't Have a Vacation Fund http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/parents_and_their_two_children_on_the_beach.jpg" alt="Parents and their two children on the beach" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Oops! It's already summer, and you have yet to save for a summer vacation. No worries. There are many ways you can still enjoy a family getaway on the cheap. If you get creative, adjust your expectations, and put in a little extra effort, you can get some much needed rest and relaxation without going into debt.</p> <h2>1. Gather last-minute funds</h2> <p>Maybe you haven't done your big spring clean-out. You can host a yard sale this weekend and get some cash for your old treasures. Check out local resale shops for clothing, children's items, and more. I've made a couple hundred dollars after a big clear out of toys and baby clothes to put toward time away. My husband is a teacher and has taken on summer gigs (like being a camp counselor) to make money to put toward travel.</p> <p>Sit down and write up a list of any and all the ways you think you might be able to make some quick cash. Other ideas include selling clothing on sites like Poshmark, finally rolling all that loose change, selling your unwanted event tickets on StubHub, and more. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-make-money-today?ref=seealso" target="_blank">25 Ways to Make Money Today</a>)</p> <h2>2. Adjust your expectations</h2> <p>Consider approaching your usual vacation in a new way. Why not skip going out to eat and save a ton by trying to cook your way through each day? If you reserve a room or suite with a kitchen, this will be much easier. Try spending no more than you would on a normal week of groceries at home. Also, don't get sucked in by high-priced tourist attractions &mdash; many beaches and parks you'll find at your destination are free.</p> <p>There are many ways to cut dollars along your journey. If your hotel offers a free breakfast, take advantage. Call ahead to see if there are any perks included in your reservation, like free transportation, reduced ticket prices to local attractions, or special nightly events. If you have yet to secure your room, try staying a little farther away from the most alluring towns and attractions. Even driving 10 to 15 minutes can save you hundreds.</p> <h2>3. Check out your state</h2> <p>I recently researched everything the great state of New York has to offer in the way of travel. And I found plenty. Fresh water beaches on Lake Ontario. Majestic lake and mountain views in the Adirondacks. Romantic castles in the Thousand Islands region. Wineries and waterfalls in the Finger Lakes. There's so much to do within a couple hours of my front door, and I didn't even know it.</p> <p>Skip the pricey plane ticket and check out your state. You could plan a road trip visiting different regions, spending just a day or so in each area. Or you could choose the coolest thing you find and spend a couple days there. If you're not going to the more traditional vacation hot spots &mdash; the beach, for example &mdash; you may save a good chunk on hotels and eats.</p> <h2>4. Scope out campgrounds</h2> <p>If you have yet to try camping, you're missing out on an extremely inexpensive way to see the world. Try camping out at some of our country's National Parks. In fact, you can stay for an entire week at some of them for <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camping-for-a-week-is-only-160-at-these-national-parks" target="_blank">less than $200</a>. Can't afford to go far? Check out state or even county parks. One of my favorites is in the Finger Lakes. Camping is dirt cheap, yet the setting gives you million dollar views and free swimming to boot.</p> <p>If you're not the outdoorsy type, some campgrounds offer glamping, aka glamorous camping, in cabins, yurts, and other accommodations that will feel more indoors than tent camping. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-save-on-your-next-glamping-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Save on Your Next Glamping Trip</a>)</p> <h2>5. Go in with a friend (or two)</h2> <p>My family is actually taking a trip with another family this summer. We're both on a limited budget. Our kids are the same ages, and we like doing a lot of the same things. So, we hunted around to find a house rental to split in the Catskills. One of our shared interests is cooking, so we've already planned our homemade meals for the week. The house is close to the municipal pool, so that will be great for cooling off and it only costs a few dollars for a weekly pass.</p> <p>What do we plan to do for entertainment? Mostly just hang out. If you are close enough to certain friends or even family, sharing space can be a huge money-saver. And you'll have so much fun being together that you won't need to spend money to find things to do. If you're really strapped, your friends may even offer to let you come visit them for free. We've also done that in the past, and it was so much fun.</p> <h2>6. Consider day tripping</h2> <p>Who says you have to spend the night to get away? There are tons of places you can pack up and go for the day and get some much-needed R&amp;R. I like to go the old fashioned way and look at a physical map of my area. I have drawn a radius that gets us places in two or three hours (or less). In my circle, I can hit up gorgeous gorges and wineries in Ithaca, NY. Spend the day trekking around Philadelphia or New York City. We can even jaunt down to the Crayola Factory or Hershey Park for the kids.</p> <p>One of my close friends cannot afford to go on a full vacation in the summer. So, she takes her family on an incredible day trip most weekends. She packs lunch and snacks, too. Her kids absolutely love the adventures they find, and it keeps the fun going all summer long.</p> <h2>7. Research housesitting</h2> <p>Another friend of mine recently offered us her apartment near the Flatiron district of NYC because she needs a house- and cat-sitter while she backpacks around Europe. Unfortunately, we're not able to go. But seriously! What an amazing opportunity to spend a week in the heart of the City for basically nothing.</p> <p>Did you know that people post house-sitting gigs online? It's a great way to get a super awesome vacation, and fast. Try searching around on Craigslist or targeted sites like House Sitting America or Care.com. You can even put out a call on your Facebook to see if any friends are in need of this service. Gigs vary from place to place, but many will let you bring your pets and family. Some even pay you for your caretaking services. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tips-for-landing-the-perfect-house-sitting-gig?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Tips for Landing the Perfect House-Sitting Gig</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Affordable%2520Family%2520Getaways%2520When%2520You%2520Dont%2520Have%2520a%2520Vacation%2520Fund.jpg&amp;description=7%20Affordable%20Family%20Getaways%20When%20You%20Dont%20Have%20a%20Vacation%20Fund"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Affordable%20Family%20Getaways%20When%20You%20Dont%20Have%20a%20Vacation%20Fund.jpg" alt="7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don't Have a Vacation Fund" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-great-places-to-take-the-family-for-spring-break">8 Great Places to Take the Family for Spring Break</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-cheap-ways-to-entertain-your-kids-this-summer">6 Cheap Ways to Entertain Your Kids This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland">15 Little Known Ways to Save at Disneyland</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Travel family trips family vacation frugal travel getaways summer vacation travel tips Fri, 09 Jun 2017 08:00:10 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1961114 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-623691410.jpg" alt="summer travelers" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Planning to get away this summer? Conserve your cash on general expenses so you can spend more on the things you'd like to do. Some pricey travel hiccups are unavoidable, but most of them you can definitely sidestep with a little bit of planning. Here are 12 tips on how to avoid costly travel mistakes.</p> <h2>1. Booking your entire hotel stay with one reservation</h2> <p>Like the stock market, nightly hotel rates fluctuate based on demand, time of year, and other factors, which means that you may not be getting the very best deal if you book the entire length of your stay in one reservation.</p> <p>In fact, you could save up to 40 percent off your entire stay by playing with your booking dates within the reservation system before you commit. For example, a five-night reservation at a popular hotel may book for $190 per night, but if you book the transaction as a one-night <em>and</em> a four-night reservation, the nightly rate drops to $127 the first night and $126 per night for the additional four nights. A great site to help you master this technique is <a href="https://findoptimal.com/en/" target="_blank">FindOptimal.com</a>, which will use its patent-pending technology to optimize your saving potential by providing cost-cutting solutions over two reservations instead of a single booking.</p> <h2>2. Overbooking your activity itinerary</h2> <p>I'm a planner through and through. My vacation days are jam-packed the moment I arrive at my destination, sometimes to the dismay of my travel partners who prefer a more leisurely approach to new-area exploration. While staying busy and active on vacation is my idea of a good time, I can admit that my tight schedule has hit a few snags in the past. Things don't always go according to plan and I've lost money on activity reservations because I was just too tired to do one more thing that day. Avoid this mistake by creating a loose itinerary ahead of time &mdash; do your research but don't lock down everything hour by hour unless it's something that's only offered on specific dates and times, or is in danger of being sold out. Once you have what you'd like to do on paper, fill in when you'd like to do them once you've arrived and are settled.</p> <h2>3. Over-packing things you don't need</h2> <p>Over-packing can present several dilemmas over the course of your trip, starting with the cost of exceeding the 50-pound checked bag limit before boarding your flight. If you're unable to transfer the overage to other bags you may be carrying, you will be required to pay up. Not a great start to your vacation. Then you have to lug that luggage around with you wherever you go, and you'll curse the day you bought that extra pair of shoes when you're hunched over like Quasimodo because you've carried the equivalent of a well-fed preteen on your back for miles.</p> <p>Let's not forget the trip home either. Now you have to buy an additional bag or leave clothing and accessories behind to make room for the items you've acquired during your travels. You can avoid all this hassle by editing your bag before you ever leave your house. Pack it, let it sit for a day so you can think about everything thing that's in it, then revisit it and pare down to only the essentials. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-pack-in-your-carry-on?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Things You Should Always Pack in Your Carry-On</a>)</p> <h2>4. Racking up international transaction fees</h2> <p>While abroad, you could get slammed with international fees for both your credit and debit cards. Call your card providers to understand their international fees, and consider getting a new card if your current ones don't have good rates for overseas purchases. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smarter-security-and-no-foreign-transaction-fees-the-best-credit-cards-to-use-while-on-vacation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards with Zero Foreign Transaction Fees</a>)</p> <p>&quot;Be sure to set a travel notice for your credit card so that your provider doesn't lock your account on suspicion of fraud,&quot; adds Benjamin Glaser, features editor for shopping-comparison site DealNews. &quot;For debit cards, find your bank's international ATM partners. You will still get charged a fee every time you withdraw money, but you will avoid an additional fee for going out of network.&quot;</p> <p>It's also a good idea to keep at least $100 cash on you at all times during vacation for emergency situations. You don't want to be S.O.L. if your card is declined or if it gets lost or stolen. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/travel-perks-you-didnt-know-your-credit-card-had?ref=seealso" target="_blank">12 Travel Perks You Didn't Know Your Credit Card Had</a>)</p> <h2>5. Traveling solo</h2> <p>I thoroughly enjoy dining alone and going shopping or to see a movie by myself, but when I travel I prefer to have a partner. For starters, how spectacular will my trip be if I don't have anyone with whom to share my experiences? Secondly, traveling with a companion cuts almost all expenses in half, including lodging, grocery bills, ground transport fares, and more. The buddy system is always a more economical option if you practice good personal finance, in my opinion.</p> <h2>6. Waiting to book ground transportation at your destination</h2> <p>A few years ago I traveled to Memphis, Tennessee, for my birthday and decided to book the car at the destination airport. <em>It's Memphis</em>, I thought to myself, how many people are renting cars here? Big mistake. Murphy's Law dictates then when I think something stupid like that, all the cars are sold out when I arrive. As such, I had to pay a premium for the car they were able to find me, which was a major letdown and an expensive annoyance.</p> <p>Booking ahead also applies to chauffeured transportation to avoid higher-than-standard rates on the ground.</p> <p>&quot;In many cases you can order a shared or private transfer at a lower cost than taking a taxi,&quot; says Isar Meitis, president of travel-booking site Last Minute Travel. &quot;Plus, you can have a designated driver waiting with your name, saving you a lot of time, and, in many cases, money. Also, many tourist attractions are cheaper if you book them prior, compared to a 'walk-in.' For a family with kids, these savings add up very quickly. In addition, these tickets can usually be picked up from a will-call kiosk or booth, which also means you don't have to wait in lines.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Dining out for most meals</h2> <p>One of the most budget-draining parts of your vacation is food, especially if you're eating out for most of your meals. You already know this. But you can cut the fat &mdash; literally and figuratively &mdash; by taking advantage of the complimentary breakfast that may be included with your hotel stay, locating free happy hour snacks and deals in the area (many hotels are now offering a free wine reception in the afternoons for guests); and buying groceries locally that you can make in the kitchen at your accommodations. And I always consult Groupon and Restaurant.com for discounts before choosing where I'll eat. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-secrets-to-eating-great-food-for-cheap-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Secrets to Eating Great Food for Cheap While Traveling</a>)</p> <h2>8. Leaving the hotel fridge stocked</h2> <p>Minibars are problematic if you have self-control issues, or children. It's easy to ravage these goodies when you're famished, and eventually you'll give in to your kids begging to get at the gummy bears in the bear-shaped bottle. Your resistance is futile, in fact.</p> <p>&quot;Hotel fridges can come in handy, but they can also be expensive &mdash; especially with hungry little ones looking for a drink or snack,&quot; says Lissa Poirot, editor-in-chief of travel-review site Family Vacation Critic. &quot;Many times, the cost of a single in-room water bottle is the same cost as what you'd spend on a full case of water &mdash; so take advantage of that. Ask your hotel to clear out the in-room fridge &mdash; they can do that &mdash; and then fill it with your own supplies.&quot;</p> <h2>9. Assuming you're locked into your original reservations</h2> <p>Airlines and travel-booking sites have given us cause to pause before canceling our reservations, because they hit us straight in the pocket if we want to make an amendment to our itineraries. But that's not always the case, and it's worth investigating the fine print of your reservations if you've since found a way to save additional cash.</p> <p>&quot;Most hotel bookings today are refundable, up to almost the very last minute,&quot; Meitis says. &quot;Even after a booking was made, if a traveler can find a better deal, they can make the same reservation for less, and then cancel the original reservation. Obviously, the traveler needs to first verify he or she is not within penalty at the time of cancellation.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-save-on-hotel-stays?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Simple Ways to Save on Hotel Stays</a>)</p> <h2>10. Traveling to popular summer destinations during peak season</h2> <p>The term &quot;peak season&quot; is enough to keep me away, and you should avoid the high time at popular destinations, too. Not only will you pay far and above for just about everything you would during the offseason &mdash; from transportation to lodging to gas &mdash; but you'll have a heck of a time getting around and staying sane. If traffic and hourslong waits in line at amusements don't drive you crazy, your restless companions will. Do yourself a favor a book the road less traveled.</p> <h2>11. Failing to budget for extra costs on cruises and at resorts</h2> <p>While you might have snagged a great cruise or resort fare, it's important to keep in mind additional costs when budgeting for your trip. You never want to be caught off-guard when you're just about broke at the end of your journey. Avoid sticker shock by familiarizing yourself with all additional costs on a cruise or at the resort in advance.</p> <p>&quot;Gratuities are one of the top costs that can catch travelers by surprise,&quot; explains Colleen McDaniel, senior executive editor of CruiseCritic.com. &quot;While it can be quite convenient not worrying about tipping while onboard, remember that gratuities are automatically added to your final bill, generally on a per person, per day basis. The total cost can add up to hundreds, maybe more, depending on the number of guests in your party and the number of days you're sailing.&quot;</p> <p>Take that cost into account when budgeting for your trip to be sure that deal really is as great as it seems. Other added costs to consider include beverages, internet, shore excursions, and alternative dining. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-travel-expenses-you-forgot-to-budget-for?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Travel Expenses You Forgot to Budget For</a>)</p> <h2>12. Overreliance on your mapping apps</h2> <p>I traveled to Costa Rica once where my husband and I rented a car to drive from our first stop at a resort below the Arenal Volcano to a beach resort a few hours away in Guanacaste. We decided to follow new friends on their newly planned scenic route, but when it turned out to be much longer than anticipated, we broke off from the group to get back on an easier path. We plugged the destination into Google Maps, which we assumed would choose the most efficient route, but our choice was ill-advised. The service cut us across the country through about 30 miles of very rocky and mountainous rural terrain that, frankly, scared us half to death.</p> <p>Asad Raza, co-founder of the travel blog Off the Beaten Trails, offers a similar warning against relying too heavily on mapping services when you're in foreign territory.</p> <p>&quot;We planned to go to Hoota Cave in Oman and decided to check the route on Google Maps and follow it,&quot; he recalls. &quot;Unfortunately, the route given was only accessible with a four-wheel drive and we just had a saloon car [<em>that's a sedan in the U.S.</em>]. It wasn't until we consulted with a local that we found the right route to follow. We ended up wasting four to five hours.&quot;</p> <p>&quot;We learned that we should not <em>only</em> rely on Google Maps, but also should do plenty of research and always be ready to consult with locals,&quot; Raza adds.</p> <p>Sound advice for staying alive while traveling, for sure.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Avoid%2520These%252012%2520Summer%2520Travel%2520Mistakes.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Avoid%20These%2012%20Summer%20Travel%20Mistakes"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Avoid%20These%2012%20Summer%20Travel%20Mistakes.jpg" alt="How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation">7 Ways Using Credit Can Help You Enjoy a Cheaper, Safer Summer Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-save-on-your-next-glamping-trip">5 Ways to Save on Your Next Glamping Trip</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-things-you-can-do-now-to-prep-for-your-best-summer-ever">14 Things You Can Do Now to Prep for Your Best Summer Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel costly mistakes frugal travel saving money summer travel summer vacation travel budget travel hacks travel tips Thu, 08 Jun 2017 08:30:18 +0000 Mikey Rox 1961856 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/girl_laughing_on_the_trolltunga.jpg" alt="Girl laughing on the Trolltunga" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you love the great outdoors, you don't want to look back on this brief, beautiful summer as a time spent inside crowded movie theaters or waiting in long lines at amusement parks. But maybe this isn't the year that you can afford to take that naturalist-guided Galapagos Islands excursion, either.</p> <p>No worries! There are many affordable places stateside where you can get off the grid without spending extravagantly. Some of these destinations have cushy lodging available, if that's your jam, but you also have the option to rough-it on a more modest budget.</p> <h2>1. California's Sierra country, other than Tahoe</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/kings_river_in_sequoia_national_park_california.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you visit Lake Tahoe in the summer, you'll love the crystalline waters, but hate the traffic and the brunch prices. Smart Californians know that you can enjoy the Sierra's fresh, piney breezes more affordably (and peacefully) from the shores of any number of less famous alpine lakes.</p> <p>Stay at the <a href="https://www.mslodge.com/" target="_blank">Montecito Sequoia Lodge &amp; Family Camp</a>, where a room that sleeps four or more is under $300 a night including meals and activities such as guided hikes through giant sequoias, bouldering, and stand-up paddleboarding in their private lake.</p> <h2>2. Kodachrome State Park, Utah</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/kodachrome_storm.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>Many a dreamed-of National Park vacation has been spoiled by the reality that lodging books up really, really early. A great workaround &mdash; and often a money saver &mdash; is checking out state and county parks in the same region.</p> <p>Located just outside Bryce Canyon National Park (one of Utah's Big Five) much-smaller Kodachrome gets its name from its 67 flashily-pigmented stone spires. You can <a href="https://stateparks.utah.gov/parks/kodachrome-basin/park-campground/" target="_blank">camp in the park ($17-$30 per night)</a> and take a trail ride through the red canyon past the gaudy spires, then take day trips into neighboring Bryce, famous for its hoodoo rock formations, and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, known for the series of colorful plateaus, and the Wave, an undulating expanse of pulled-taffy-like sandstone that you have to win a daily lottery to hike.</p> <h2>3. Anchorage, Alaska</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/anchorage.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>The largest city in the state for a nature lover's getaway? Well, yes, when the state is Alaska and that largest metropolis has just over 300,000 people. Right in town, 1,400-acre Kincaid Park is home to moose, porcupines, lynx, and eagles. Chugach State Park, one of the largest in the United States, begins just seven miles from downtown, and contains mountains, ferns, wildflowers, forests, ptarmigan, and brown and black bears.</p> <p>Modestly-priced hotels in Anchorage include the $140-a-night <a href="https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g31000-d10662666-Reviews-Ski_Inn-Girdwood_Anchorage_Alaska.html" target="_blank">Ski Inn</a>. Anchorage is pretty far from the rest of the United States, but getting there need not be a bank-breaker. Alaska Airlines offers flights from San Francisco and other lower-48 cities for under $400 round-trip, depending on dates.</p> <h2>4. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/dry_tortugas_island.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>Would you like to camp under a palm tree on a white sand beach, under a star-studded sky 70 miles from the mainland? What if I told you it only <a href="https://www.nps.gov/drto/planyourvisit/campgrounds.htm" target="_blank">costs $15 a night</a>? It really does, at one of the most isolated national parks in the lower 48.</p> <p>Activities include snorkeling coral reefs among young barracuda, lobsters, and tropical fish; birding; and watching for the adorable sea turtles that give the park its name.</p> <p>The campground fee isn't the only expense of a Dry Tortuga getaway. The ferry from the mainland will set you back <a href="https://www.drytortugas.com/rates-reservations/" target="_blank">$195 round-trip</a> &mdash; but it includes breakfast, lunch, and the use of snorkeling equipment.</p> <h2>5. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sleeping_bear_dunes_national_lakeshore.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Including sand dunes 400 feet above Lake Michigan and offshore islands, this lovely area is home to pine forests, abandoned farms reverting back to meadowland, the occasional bobcat, and wildflowers such as cowslips and St. John's Wort.</p> <p>Stay at a rural inn like the <a href="http://www.duneswood.com/rooms.html" target="_blank">Duneswood Resort</a> for $100-$200 a night, or in one of the many hotels in Traverse City, where you can stroll the charming downtown. In early July, the city holds its <a href="http://www.cherryfestival.org/our-events/2017-tickets" target="_blank">Cherry Festival</a>, with an air show, concerts, and foodie events.</p> <h2>6. Cannon Beach, Oregon</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/indian_beach_in_ecola_state_park.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>From a single platform at Ecola State Park on this Oregon Coast spot, you can view gray whales, bald eagles, and brown pelicans. At dusk, moose emerge to graze in the park. On the beach, tide pools teem with life that the ocean left behind, including sea stars, hermit crabs, and sometimes even spiny little sea urchins. The best pools are around <a href="http://friendsofhaystackrock.org/haystack-rock-awareness-program/marine-garden-refuge/" target="_blank">Haystack Rock</a>, a 235-foot-tall arrowhead-shaped rock sticking out of the ocean that you can walk to at low tide.</p> <p>Nearby hotels range from $100-$200 or so per night.</p> <h2>7. Joshua Tree National Park, California</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/joshua_tree_national_park_at_sunset_usa.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Don't be fooled into thinking there's nothing to see in the desert &mdash; or that all desert nature is the same. In fact, this <a href="https://www.nps.gov/jotr/planyourvisit/night-sky-festival.htm" target="_blank">Southern California national park</a> sits at the confluence of two distinct desert ecosystems, the low Colorado and the high Mojave. Admire the Seussian trees the park is named for; explore boulder piles, desert washes, and strange rock formations; and gaze at some of the most spectacular night skies you'll see anywhere.</p> <p>You can camp in the park, or stay at the <a href="http://www.campbellhouse29palms.com/" target="_blank">Campbell House</a> bed and breakfast outside the gate for about $150 a night, which gives you the ability to cool off in a swimming pool after hikes.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Affordable%2520Destinations%2520for%2520Nature%2520Lovers.jpg&amp;description=7%20Affordable%20Destinations%20for%20Nature%20Lovers"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Affordable%20Destinations%20for%20Nature%20Lovers.jpg" alt="7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-countries-every-outdoor-explorer-can-afford-to-visit">5 Affordable Countries Every Outdoor Explorer Can Afford to Visit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-travel-destinations-for-people-who-hate-crowds">10 Travel Destinations for People Who Hate Crowds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever">Flashback Friday: 40 Best Budget-Friendly Travel Tips Ever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel affordable travel frugal travel get outside nature nature lovers travel travel destinations travel tips Wed, 07 Jun 2017 08:00:10 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1961112 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Things You Should Always Pack in Your Carry-On http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-pack-in-your-carry-on <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-things-you-should-always-pack-in-your-carry-on" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-514078965_0.jpg" alt="Woman always packing these 8 things in her carry-on" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Every traveler wants their trip to go off without a hitch, but human error can foil those plans. Maybe you forgot to pack your medication, or perhaps the airline sent your bags to the wrong destination. Life happens. Which is why you should keep your vacay on track by keeping your necessities within reach at all times. Here's what you should always pack in your carry-on, no matter what.</p> <h2>1. Second form of ID</h2> <p>Most of us keep our driver's license in our wallets, but it's also a good idea to pack your passport, too &mdash; even for domestic trips. Any number of things can happen to your ID while traveling, like accidentally misplacing it in the airport, or neglecting to put it in your wallet before leaving your house. I like to travel with a passport just in case I want to check out a nearby country on my vacation, like when I hopped over to Canada on a recent trip to Detroit.</p> <p>If you're traveling internationally, you'll obviously need a passport as your main form of ID. This requires extra precautions, like making a copy of your passport photo page in case your passport is lost or stolen during your travels. You'll have an easier time expediting a new passport from the local embassy if you can show proof of ID in a photocopy. This five-second trick can save you hours and hours of unnecessary stress, especially if there's a language barrier. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-dont-have-your-id-at-the-airport" target="_blank">What to Do If You Don't Have Your ID at the Airport</a>)</p> <h2>2. Empty water bottle</h2> <p>I recently traveled to Columbus, Ohio and while waiting in line for security, I saw a familiar sight: travelers chugging whatever drink they brought with them to the airport because they forgot that you can't take liquids with you through security. Those same people often then end up buying $3 bottles of water at expensive airport shops once they're on the other side.</p> <p>To avoid the bloat and expense of that experience, I travel with my empty <a href="http://amzn.to/2pUrAjR" target="_blank">Nalgene bottle</a> that I fill up with water once I've crossed over to the gates. There are water fountains throughout the airport. That water is free, and it's just as tasty as the pricey bottled stuff. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-6-things-will-make-your-next-flight-more-comfortable" target="_blank">6 Things That Will Make Your Flight More Comfortable</a>)</p> <h2>3. Medication</h2> <p>To step foot on an airplane, I need at least two glasses of wine with a Xanax chaser. If the captain says there will be turbulence, I up my dosage. This ritual saves me from having a heart attack midflight, and the rest of the passengers can rest easy without all my heavy breathing and cursing.</p> <p>It's a good idea to have whatever medication you need for your various ailments in case the flight is delayed and/or your bags don't arrive at your destination the same time you do. Outside of your prescriptions, don't forget to bring a decongestant if you have trouble clearing your ears during flights, and a general pain reliever (as long as they're safe to take with your other medications, of course). The chance you'll get a headache increases, like, tenfold as soon as you enter the airport &mdash; but you already know this.</p> <h2>4. Chargers for devices</h2> <p>Often I travel by train to the closest airport, and my battery is half depleted by the time I get there 90 minutes later. Seeing as how I verge on having a stroke whenever my juice gets below 10 percent, I always have my chargers in my carry-on. You never know when you'll be in a pinch and need your devices to be all powered up. Nowadays you'll find plugs and USB outlets all over airport terminals and on planes, trains, and even in taxis. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-power-banks?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Power Banks</a>)</p> <h2>5. Toothbrush</h2> <p>If you're not able to shower for an extended period of time &mdash; maybe you're on a particularly long flight or maybe you've hit a few hiccups in your travel plans &mdash; a fresh toothbrush and toothpaste will leave you feeling clean enough to power through until you find a shower.</p> <h2>6. Cash</h2> <p>I rarely use cash because I love the compactness and convenience of my debit and credit cards, but I've been on trips on more than one occasion where they've been flagged after a single swipe for security reasons because of suspect activity. That generally means my banking institutions are trying to protect me from fraud situations, but it's really annoying when I need to pay for something, and downright infuriating when I don't have access to a working phone to call and sort the error out straight away. Now I always travel with $100 in cash in $20 increments in my wallet when I go on a trip so I can at least afford essentials, like food or a cab ride.</p> <h2>7. Multipurpose jacket</h2> <p>Do you know why most modes of public transportation keep their cars and cabins at chilling temperatures? Neither do I. But I always, always travel with a light jacket or hoodie &mdash; even if it's 95&ordm; F where I'm leaving or where I'm going. If I don't need to wear it, at least now I have something on which to lay my head when the cocktails kick in.</p> <h2>8. Glasses</h2> <p>If you wear contacts, pack your glasses. You may need them. This is especially important if you have to drive anywhere once you reach your destination. Your eyes may be dry from the flight, or you might lose a contact in transit. You may even want to pack a second pair of glasses and contacts in your checked luggage, just in case. If you're headed someplace fantastic like the jungles of Costa Rica, you won't find a Lenscrafters, anywhere. Stay smart, and stay sighted.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-things-you-should-always-pack-in-your-carry-on&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Things%2520You%2520Should%2520Always%2520Pack%2520in%2520Your%2520Carry-On%2520%25281%2529.jpg&amp;description=8%20Things%20You%20Should%20Always%20Pack%20in%20Your%20Carry-On"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Things%20You%20Should%20Always%20Pack%20in%20Your%20Carry-On%20%281%29.jpg" alt="8 Things You Should Always Pack in Your Carry-On" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-pack-in-your-carry-on">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">Make Flying Easy: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-packing-secrets-from-a-professional-traveler">15 Packing Secrets From a Professional Traveler</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-affordable-travel-items-that-you-shouldnt-leave-home-without">9 Affordable Travel Items That You Shouldn&#039;t Leave Home Without</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/roll-dont-fold-and-10-other-tricks-for-packing-fast">Roll, Don&#039;t Fold (and 10 Other Tricks for Packing Fast)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Travel carry-on luggage minimalism packing packing tips suitcase travel advice travel tips Fri, 19 May 2017 08:30:08 +0000 Mikey Rox 1950126 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Cash In On Getting Bumped From a Flight http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-cash-in-on-getting-bumped-from-a-flight <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-cash-in-on-getting-bumped-from-a-flight" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-180110401.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to cash in on getting bumped from a flight" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Even before a United passenger was infamously dragged off a plane because his flight was overbooked, most people dreaded getting <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight" target="_blank">bumped from a scheduled flight</a>. And yet, there are travelers who actively <em style="font-size: 13px;">try </em>to get bumped in order to reap the financial rewards airlines sometimes offer, which is usually a few hundred dollars in vouchers for future flights.</p> <p>However, airlines have been known to offer higher amounts, and cash or gift cards instead of vouchers. And now that United has rewritten its rules to offer customers up to $10,000 to give up a seat (and Delta will pay up to $9,950), there could be some real profit in the pursuit of the bump. Let's look at some tried and true bumpee tactics to learn how you can get in on the action.</p> <h2>Pad your travel itinerary with extra time</h2> <p>You've probably heard gate staff announcing that they're looking for folks to give up their seats, and then offer an escalating reward. As the numbers climb higher, you sit there kicking yourself for booking your flight the night before the wedding you're supposed to attend, making it impossible for you to take the deal.</p> <p>When possible, fly in a day earlier than you think you need to. Not only does this give you the freedom to accept a bump, but it makes it less likely that you'll miss your event due to other delays.</p> <h2>Choose a bump-friendly airline</h2> <p>Some airlines bump travelers more often than others. Fortunately, this data is publicly available. The Department of Transportation records two kinds of bumps: voluntary, as in, they paid you to give up your flight; and involuntary, as in what happened to <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-united-dragged-passenger-dao-0414-biz-20170413-story.html" target="_blank">Dr. David Dao on that United plane in Chicago</a>.</p> <p>In 2016, Delta had the most voluntary bumps at 129,825, followed by Southwest at 88,628, and United at 62,895. It's impossible to say if United's new, more passenger-friendly booking policies will change this in the next year, but based on past behavior, Delta is your best bet for getting paid to give up your seat.</p> <p>Delta has also been known as being particularly generous with its rewards; a Forbes columnist and her family <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/laurabegleybloom/2017/04/09/why-delta-air-lines-paid-me-11000-not-to-fly-to-florida-this-weekend/#208638f74de1" target="_blank">got paid $11,000</a> in gift cards to give up seats on several flights in one weekend. Sure, some of it was luck, but they also had a flexible travel schedule, they were willing to give up their seats each time their flights were rebooked, and they negotiated bump compensation to get the best deals.</p> <h2>Choose a bump-friendly flight</h2> <p>While some travel experts dismiss the notion that flights at any given time are more likely to be overbooked, others advocate booking flights on those nightmare days other flexible travelers avoid: the holidays, Monday mornings, and during periods of bad weather. The biggest downside to this tactic is that flights tend to be more expensive during busy times.</p> <h2>Have alternate plans in mind</h2> <p>Sometimes I've not volunteered for bump compensation simply because I didn't have enough time to think through how a schedule change would affect my plans. But if you know the opportunity to get bumped is a possibility, you can make contingency plans.</p> <p>How would you know in advance that you might get bumped? Check the day before, and before you leave for the airport, to see if the flight is full. You can find out if a flight is sold out by going through the booking process up until the part where you would pay on the airline site, or you could check the seat maps on <a href="https://www.expertflyer.com/" target="_blank">ExpertFlyer</a>.</p> <p>Once you know your flight is fully booked, research alternative flights that would get you to your destination at a satisfactory time, warn friends and family that you might be late, and pack a snack for a possible extended wait at the airport. Most importantly, avoid checking luggage.</p> <p>For most people, getting bumped means arriving late. But sometimes people give up their trips altogether, for the right offer. That columnist who got paid $11,000 originally thought she was going to be late to see family in Florida, but when the offers got richer and the family got bumped again and again, they ended up giving up their weekend altogether. For them, at that price, it was worth it.</p> <h2>Request the bump the right way</h2> <p>This is perhaps the most important step of all. Some airlines, including Delta, allow you to <a href="http://www.pbs.org/newshour/making-sense/how-delta-masters-the-game-of-overbooking-flights/" target="_blank">indicate when checking in</a> if you'd be willing to give up your seat for compensation, and for how much.</p> <p>For other airlines, your best bet is to arrive at the gate early, luggage in hand, and let the gate staff know that you'd be interested in being &quot;voluntarily denied boarding.&quot; If you have already researched an alternative flight, tell them about it. If they have multiple volunteers, staff are more likely to choose someone who makes the rebooking process easy for them. Then, stick close to gate area so you don't miss any announcements.</p> <h2>Negotiate well</h2> <p>So you've been chosen for voluntarily denied boarding! The work isn't over yet. Before agreeing to go ahead with the deal, ask (nicely) for these things:</p> <ul> <li> <p>A good seat on the rebooked flight of your choice.</p> </li> <li> <p>A higher amount. They offered $500? It doesn't hurt to ask for $800.</p> </li> <li> <p>Meals and lodging during your delay.</p> </li> <li> <p>Cash instead of vouchers.</p> </li> </ul> <p>Vouchers have expiration dates and other restrictions that can make them hard to use. Most airlines offer vouchers as a default; so ask if you can get cash or gift cards instead.</p> <p>If the airline is asking you to fly the next day, it will probably also cover your hotel and dinner for the night. If the delay is less than a day, you should be able to get meal vouchers to use at the airport. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-websites-for-last-minute-airfare-deals?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Best Websites for Last-Minute Airfare Deals</a>)</p> <h2>Understand that it's never a guarantee until the plane takes off</h2> <p>Even after planning ahead and negotiating a bump, chances are you'll end up on your original flight anyway. Usually gate staff gathers a list of volunteers, but it's not a done deal until the flight boards, because if anyone misses the flight, they won't need to bump you after all. With this in mind, make sure to let the staff know you want to retain your seat assignment and boarding pass while you wait.</p> <p>And however it ends up, don't forget to thank the gate staff who worked with you! Smart frequent travelers even carry gift cards or chocolates to thank staff members who get them bump offers.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-cash-in-on-getting-bumped-from-a-flight">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight">What to Do If You Get Bumped From a Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-street-food-safely-while-traveling">How to Eat Street Food Safely While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Travel bumped from a flight flight passenger flight tips making money overbooked flight travel tips United Airlines Thu, 18 May 2017 08:00:08 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1948479 at http://www.wisebread.com What to Do If You Get Bumped From a Flight http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-163031146.jpg" alt="Man learning what to do after getting bumped from a flight" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Overbooked flight? Somebody's going to get bumped &mdash; a common, but inconvenient aspect of travel by airplane. Indeed, it's within an airline's power to deny ticket-holding passengers a seat on a flight. Of course, passengers have some control in these situations, as well. The next time you're forced to give up your seat on an oversold domestic flight, know that <a href="https://www.transportation.gov/airconsumer/fly-rights" target="_blank">these are your rights</a>, from the federal Department of Transportation.</p> <h2>1. Remember that airlines must seek volunteers first</h2> <p>Before an airline can bump anyone involuntarily, they need to first find passengers who are willing to give up their seats. If you have some flexibility in your schedule and can arrive at your next destination a bit later than originally planned, you can give up your ticket in exchange for a later departure time. If you decide to volunteer to give up your seat, find out whether the airline is able to issue you a new ticket or if you'll be flying standby. If it's the latter, find out whether the airline can offer you any compensation toward food or lodging while you wait. It could be a while, and, as we all know, airport cuisine isn't cheap.</p> <h2>2. Ask about compensation</h2> <p>If you are bumped involuntarily, ask an airline representative what, if any, compensation you are entitled to. You are entitled to compensation if, for example, the airline fails to arrange substitute transportation to get you to your final destination within one hour of your originally scheduled arrival time. The amount depends on the price of the ticket and the length of the delay. For example, if your new travel arrangement itinerary is scheduled to get you to your domestic destination between one and two hours after your originally scheduled arrival time, the airline is required to pay you 200 percent of your one-way fare to your final destination that day (up to $675 maximum).</p> <h2>3. Request a written copy of your rights</h2> <p>DOT requires each airline to offer all involuntarily bumped passengers a written statement describing their rights and explaining how the carrier decides who gets to fly on an oversold flight and who doesn't. This is your guide to navigating any bumped seating situation. You will be less likely to miss out on any compensation owed to you if you request and keep a copy of this with you.</p> <h2>4. Seek a refund for any prepaid upgrades</h2> <p>If you prepaid for an in-flight amenity, such as premium seat selection, and you do not receive those services on your substitute flight, the airline that bumped you must refund those charges. There will be times an airline is unable to honor prepaid amenities if, for example, the plane you are on for your replacement flight is not equipped with the same bells and whistles available on your original booking.</p> <h2>5. You get to choose: free tickets, vouchers, or a check</h2> <p>You have the right to insist on compensation by an on-the-spot check for the dollar amount equal to the ticket price. Alternately, airlines may offer free tickets or dollar-amount vouchers for future flights. The choice is yours!</p> <p>Our advice: If you paid a higher-than-normal rate for your ticket, opt for the check. This way, you'll have a shot at rebooking a new trip for less, leaving you with the leftovers to spend however you desire.</p> <h2>6. If you aren't compensated fairly, you can pursue a complaint</h2> <p>If being bumped costs you more than the airline will pay you on the spot, you can try to negotiate a higher settlement with their complaint department. But don't cash the check or use the voucher while you're negotiating. As soon as you spend your compensation bucks, your right to haggle for more is gone.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhat-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhat%2520to%2520Do%2520If%2520You%2520Get%2520Bumped%2520From%2520a%2520Flight.jpg&amp;description=What%20to%20Do%20If%20You%20Get%20Bumped%20From%20a%20Flight"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/What%20to%20Do%20If%20You%20Get%20Bumped%20From%20a%20Flight.jpg" alt="What to Do If You Get Bumped From a Flight" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-cash-in-on-getting-bumped-from-a-flight">How to Cash In On Getting Bumped From a Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-students-can-travel-abroad-for-less">7 Ways Students Can Travel Abroad for Less</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fly-out-of-these-airports-and-save-big-on-airfare">Fly Out of These Airports and Save Big on Airfare</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Travel Airfare bumped from a flight flight passenger flights travel tips United Airlines Thu, 11 May 2017 08:30:11 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1944520 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Things It's Better to Buy at the Last Minute http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-its-better-to-buy-at-the-last-minute <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-things-its-better-to-buy-at-the-last-minute" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-543665766.jpg" alt="Woman learning things it&#039;s better to buy at the last minute" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Are you an anxious planner when it comes to deals? Me too! But sometimes, acting <em>strategically spontaneous</em> can be rewarding. The early bird doesn't always get the worm. Here are six things it's better to buy at the absolute last minute.</p> <h2>1. Hotel rooms</h2> <p>Sometimes planning a vacation is the best part of the process. But if you want to get a deal, it may pay to be a little late to pull the trigger. With apps like Hotels Tonight, or discount-minded broker sites like Booking.com, it's easier than ever to book a last-minute stay. This is especially true at the nicer three-stars-and-above hotels, which are more expensive. They tend to have lots of vacancy on Sundays and weeknights, so if you can handle the uncertainty of waiting until the last minute, you could score really posh lodgings. </p> <p>The downside is that you may end up with your second or third choice of hotel if your favorite option sells out before you can snag a deal, but it's still likely that you'll end up with more value for your buck when you scoop up unbooked inventory at the eleventh hour.</p> <h2>2. Show tickets</h2> <p>From sporting events to plays, there are ways to sneak in under the wire and get a last-minute deal. An empty seat is lost money, so venues would rather sell a last-minute ticket at a discount than lose that revenue altogether. Take advantage by buying your sports tickets one to three days before the game using sites like SeatGeek. For music and theater shows, wait until the day of. The best deals await you at the box office &mdash; visit once they open to inquire about discount remainder tickets.</p> <h2>3. Farmers market fare</h2> <p>After a long morning of selling fruit, veggies, cheese, and other perishables, farmers market stalls are eager to sell everything. That means when 2 p.m. rolls around, deals can be made. This is especially true for produce, meat, and dairy &mdash; items that will likely be a hassle to repack and transport, or may perish en route &mdash; so they'll want to unload them fast. Swoop in to make your offer, and they will likely accept. You'll finally be able to afford items that are sometimes not worth the extra expense otherwise. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-this-not-that-at-the-farmers-market?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Buy This &mdash; Not That &mdash; at the Farmers Market</a>)</p> <h2>4. Cruises</h2> <p>Cruises remain a very popular and cost-effective way to enjoy an all-inclusive vacation. Nevertheless, many ships don't fill up to 100 percent capacity, so it's a great opportunity to get an even better deal on a cruise. Especially good times for deals are right before or after a major peak holiday, and during hurricane season, but sometimes you can even get lucky on a cruise during peak time.</p> <p>You may have to settle for a cruise that ends in a different port than you departed from, or you might need to take more time off for a longer cruise, if that's what's available during your last-minute buying window. Still, you might get lucky!</p> <h2>5. Flights</h2> <p>Despite the unpredictable nature of plane tickets, there are so many flights daily that it is still possible to get lucky with a last-minute fare. If you live near a hub, you can be especially lucky. Use Google Flights regularly to check in on your options. They do a good job of sorting through the best costs and departure times. Southwest has sales all the time, so if the time is right, pounce! Tuesdays are ideal to shop if you're buying flights for the coming weekend. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a>)</p> <h2>6. Holiday gifts</h2> <p>Are you someone who buys all your presents early and gets mad at your partner for waiting until Christmas Eve to shop? Well, maybe they're onto something. Sure, there are lots of deals on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but at many big box and department stores, the better deals on the stuff you want happen the week of Christmas. Coats, pajamas, boots, appliances, holiday-themed merchandise, undersold video game consoles, and more get deep discounts. At drugstores, you may see stocking stuffers like candy, toys, and bath gift baskets move to the clearance aisle, too.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-its-better-to-buy-at-the-last-minute">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-one-question-you-should-ask-before-every-major-purchase">The One Question You Should Ask Before Every Major Purchase</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-problems-you-can-solve-with-20">8 Problems You Can Solve With $20</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-items-you-should-never-buy-online">8 Items You Should Never Buy Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-resist-the-expensive-once-in-a-lifetime-mentality">How to Resist the Expensive &quot;Once in a Lifetime&quot; Mentality</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-one-nice-thing-can-ruin-your-whole-budget">How One Nice Thing Can Ruin Your Whole Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping booking flights last-minute shopping saving money shopping tips Shopping Tricks Spending Money travel tips Fri, 05 May 2017 08:30:07 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1940413 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Get Over Jet Lag and Enjoy Your Trip http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-over-jet-lag-and-enjoy-your-trip <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-get-over-jet-lag-and-enjoy-your-trip" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-638154810.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to get over jet lag and enjoying her trip" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You imagined yourself cruising through Venice in a gondola or snapping photos of wallabies in the Australian outback. Instead, you're wandering around in a haze, falling asleep at dinner, and popping painkillers for headaches. It's that jerky trip-ruiner, jet lag.</p> <p>It doesn't have to be this way. There are time-honored and research-based tactics that really reduce the time and severity of jet lag. I have been able to travel across the world and feel close to normal by the second day, and totally normal by the third, by following some of the suggestions below.</p> <h2>1. Power through that first day</h2> <p>After a long, wearying trip, it can be tempting to collapse into your hotel bed upon arrival, no matter what time it is. Don't do it! What you think will be a half-hour nap will probably turn into eight hours of inappropriately-timed shut-eye, followed by a desperate wander through shutdown predawn streets searching for breakfast.</p> <p>In my experience, staying awake through the first day of an international trip is the most critical factor for adjusting your body clock. Don't schedule expensive or demanding activities on that first day, but don't plan to spend it in your room resting either, lest you fall right to sleep. And whatever you do, don't sit down to watch TV!</p> <p>Force yourself to walk around your new location, or meet up with local friends whose company will keep you alert. Allow yourself to eat ice cream and other treats to keep you going.</p> <h2>2. Try melatonin</h2> <p>Check with your doctor first, but I have found a small dose of melatonin helped my family sleep better on the plane, and daily doses helped us fall asleep at the appropriate time at our destination. Follow recommended dosage limits, of course.</p> <h2>3. Try the fasting method</h2> <p>I find it hard to resist the temptation of an airplane meal being plopped in front of me, but there is scientific evidence that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-naturally-reset-your-sleep-cycle-overnight" target="_blank">not eating for 12 to 16 hours</a> before your new wake up time will reset your clock immediately.</p> <p>I tried this on a recent flight to Australia, when I needed to reset my clock 19 hours forward. When we boarded our flight at midnight, it was 7 p.m. in Australia. This would have been a good time to start fasting. Unfortunately, I was hungry, so I ate the meal served at about 2 a.m. California time, or 10 p.m. Sydney time. But I did refrain from snacking until breakfast was served at about 5 a.m. Sydney time, so at least I avoided eating during most of the time when I would normally be asleep in Australia.</p> <p>The result? I felt groggy the first day in Sydney, but woke up the second day ready to explore my destination. I think the sort-of fast helped.</p> <h2>4. Do everything you can to achieve decent sleep on the plane</h2> <p>If you are flying across the ocean, chances are that at least some of your flight will be during your destination's nighttime. Besides melatonin, I have found either Benadryl or a double scotch to be helpful in getting that mile-high shut-eye. Get a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-travel-pillows?ref=internal" target="_blank">good travel pillow</a>. On my Australia trip, I brought two different kinds so I could vary my position throughout the night. Wear comfortable clothes. Earplugs and eyeshades can also be helpful.</p> <p>Some people suggest staying up all night before a flight, to make sure you can sleep on the plane. But this tactic could backfire badly if you're like me and have trouble sleeping on planes, because you could arrive at your destination too exhausted to make it through the first day.</p> <p>Of course, the most helpful thing of all in getting a good night's sleep is an upgrade to Business or First Class &mdash; so if you've got the miles, consider spending them. Upgrades are one of the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airline-miles-secrets-only-frequent-flyers-know?ref=internal" target="_blank">best values for your miles</a>.</p> <h2>5. Use caffeine wisely</h2> <p>This means that if you're landing in the morning, go ahead and indulge &mdash; it'll help you stay awake on day one. But if you land <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805807/" target="_blank">within six hours of bedtime</a>, stay away from the coffee shop, no matter how much you feel like you need it.</p> <h2>6. Use light to your advantage</h2> <p>Our bodies set their internal clocks based on light. Bright light, especially sunlight, tells us to be awake, and darkness tells us to sleep. On the most basic level, you can help yourself adjust to your new time zone by spending the first day outside in the sunshine as much as possible. Continue getting sunlight exposure first thing in the morning throughout your trip, and avoid artificial light and screen time at night.</p> <p>If you want to get more strategic about it, you can purchase a <a href="http://amzn.to/2nDoakM" target="_blank">light therapy device</a> to expose yourself at the correct times before, during, and after your trip. Experts say that carefully timed light exposure before a trip can <a href="https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-to-prevent-jet-lag/" target="_blank">shorten jet lag symptoms</a> significantly.</p> <h2>7. Try adjusting gradually</h2> <p>Some suggest <a href="http://traveltips.usatoday.com/avoid-jet-lag-going-europe-11244.html" target="_blank">moving your bedtime 15 minutes a night</a> over the course of two weeks. For example, say you are flying from Chicago to Paris, which is six hours ahead. If you normally go to bed at 10 p.m. in Chicago, that's 4 a.m. in Paris. You need to go to bed and get up much earlier. A really dedicated two weeks of preparation, 15 minutes at a time, could move your bedtime up 3.5 hours, so that the night before your flight, you'd be going to bed at 6:30 p.m. Chicago time, or 12:30 a.m. Paris time.</p> <h2>8. Schedule your flight strategically</h2> <p>It's much easier to sleep on flights that leave late at night local time. It's also easier to stay awake through the first day of your trip if you don't arrive at dawn. Based on what you find most challenging &mdash; sleeping on the plane or staying awake once you get there &mdash; choose a flight time that plays to your strengths.</p> <h2>9. Stop checking what time it is at home</h2> <p>On my recent Australia trip, my kids asked me constantly during the first few days what the time was back home. I refused to tell them, saying, &quot;It's 2 p.m. <em>here</em>. Time for ice cream.&quot; The sooner you can start thinking of local time as the &quot;real&quot; time, the better.</p> <h2>10. Give up and embrace being a vampire</h2> <p>Some destinations offer fun entertainment at all hours. Heck, some destinations &mdash; New Orleans, anyone? &mdash; are best late at night. If you truly can't get yourself on a normal local schedule, maybe you'll have a wonderful time in London's nightclubs and skip the Tower of London this time around. This is a vacation, after all, not a work shift. Ultimately, do what's best for you.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div align="center"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-ways-to-get-over-jet-lag-and-enjoy-your-trip&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20Over%20Jet%20Lag%20and%20Enjoy%20Your%20Trip.jpg&amp;description=10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20Over%20Jet%20Lag%20and%20Enjoy%20Your%20Trip" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <div align="center">&nbsp;</div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20Over%20Jet%20Lag%20and%20Enjoy%20Your%20Trip.jpg" alt="10 Ways to Get Over Jet Lag and Enjoy Your Trip" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-over-jet-lag-and-enjoy-your-trip">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-your-belongings-get-stolen-abroad">What to Do When Your Belongings Get Stolen Abroad</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever">Flashback Friday: 40 Best Budget-Friendly Travel Tips Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-useful-items-hotels-usually-provide-for-free">14 Useful Items Hotels Usually Provide for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-save-on-smartphone-costs-while-traveling">8 Ways to Save on Smartphone Costs While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel get over jet lag jet lag rest sleep habits travel hacks travel problems travel tips Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:30:34 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1913752 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Things I Learned From Renting Out My Home on Airbnb http://www.wisebread.com/13-things-i-learned-from-renting-out-my-home-on-airbnb <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/13-things-i-learned-from-renting-out-my-home-on-airbnb" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-511477310.jpg" alt="renting your home on airbnb" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's a leap of faith to open up your primary home to paying guests. When I listed my family home on Airbnb while we were traveling, I had to accept the idea of strangers sleeping in our beds, snooping through drawers and closets, and perusing the shows on our DVR. I also had to accept the risk that something might be stolen or damaged. But most nerve-wracking for me was submitting my home to judgment. After each stay, guests are expected to rate my home on a scale of one to five, not just overall, but on cleanliness as well. Having your home and your hospitality critiqued on the Internet can be tough.</p> <p>The upside, of course, is the money. During one long trip, we earned enough on Airbnb to cover our own vacation lodging. Another trip paid for a new master bedroom set. The unexpected upside has been lessons &mdash; good and bad &mdash; that I've learned from the experience.</p> <h2>1. It Can Be Profitable if You Live in the Right Area</h2> <p>I've been pleasantly surprised to learn that because we live in the popular San Francisco Bay area, we are able to charge up to $200 a night for a home that would have otherwise been sitting empty. And I was amazed to read that another Bay Area Airbnb'er is close to paying the entire mortgage of a house in the mountains by renting it out, and that fellow Wise Bread writer Mikey Rox <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-rent-your-place-on-airbnb-and-succeed?ref=internal" target="_blank">bought a second home on his Airbnb profits</a>. My husband and I are now contemplating adding a bathroom to the lower level of our house, with the goal of renting out that area as a studio, even when we are home. We hope the rents will help pay for the project.</p> <h2>2. It's a Lot of Work to Prepare a Lived-In Home for Rental</h2> <p>Before hosting guests who are staying a week or more, I like to provide an empty drawer and some closet space in each bedroom, and generally declutter the house so that the guests can use every surface without being encumbered by all the junk my family usually has around. I knock off to-do list items such as getting a leaky faucet or a sticky door lock fixed, and scrutinize my house for fixable flaws such as scuff marks on walls or grubby shower grout. Then of course, I need to remove and lock up personal documents and valuables. All this takes <em>forever</em>.</p> <p>Prepping my four-bedroom home for rental typically takes me about 40 hours, meaning that the rental wouldn't even be a very good hourly rate, except for the fact that we enjoy returning to a decluttered home after our trips. On the downside, we sometimes can't find things that I've boxed up and stored away while we were gone.</p> <h2>3. People Are Generally Polite and Honest</h2> <p>Maybe we've just had good luck so far, but we have never come home to find that our home has been blatantly abused. Once I accidentally left a sheet of bank account passwords out &mdash; of all things! &mdash; and none of my accounts were breached. (Of course I changed all the passwords immediately.) We always have the house professionally cleaned before we return, but the cleaners have told us that the house is usually not terribly messy when they arrive.</p> <h2>4. Some People Are Complainers</h2> <p>A few times, we have had guests stay in our home at a discount in exchange for caring for our cats. They're pretty low-maintenance cats, and guests have enjoyed having them around. All except that <em>one</em> lady, who texted me daily to complain about the cats and various other problems around the house. Her constant kvetching ruined our trip.</p> <h2>5. You Must Be Completely Upfront About Any Potential Problems</h2> <p>In retrospect, I realized that although the guest mentioned above was probably just a complainer in general, one reason she was upset was that I had waited until the last minute to warn her about one potential behavior problem with the cats. She felt blindsided by that.</p> <p>On the flip side, we received one booking while the central heat in our home was unexpectedly inoperative. Not only did we get in touch to warn the bookers, we invited them over, since they were local, to check out the situation and determine whether the electric space heaters we'd borrowed were adequate. We gave them the option to cancel the booking, of course, but they opted to stay (at a discount) and left us a positive review.</p> <h2>6. Something Always Gets Broken</h2> <p>Despite the fact that people seem to have treated our home pretty gently, it seems some little thing is always awry when we return. A door will have stopped closing properly or a picture has been knocked off the wall and cracked. We've come to expect it as part of the cost of doing business.</p> <h2>7. Something Always Gets Left Behind</h2> <p>Some folks have left useful things in our house &mdash; the complainer left a small space heater, even though it was summer when she was staying &mdash; and since she never replied to my email asking if she wanted it back, we've enjoyed using it over the years. Others leave things that we don't notice until weeks later and then wonder where on earth it came from.</p> <h2>8. A Few Items Are Usually Moved Around</h2> <p>Although we've never had anything stolen, it's very common to come home and immediately notice something is not in its usual place. Once I searched and searched for the dishpan I always keep in the kitchen sink, finally locating it in the backyard. Naturally, dishes that have been used and washed are often put away in the wrong places. These little things, while not harmful, can be unsettling reminders that others have been using your things while you were gone.</p> <h2>9. You Have to Really Spell Things Out for People</h2> <p>Once I went to a bit of trouble putting together a nice gift basket for guests, with a fancy chocolate and a bottle of local wine. When we returned home, it was still sitting on the counter, untouched. The only explanations for this I could think of were the guests were non-drinkers or on a diet, or they didn't realize this was for them.</p> <p>Now, I always leave my guests an introductory note and specifically invite them to eat, drink, or use any of the things we've left for them. I also spell out house rules clearly, since things that might seem natural to us &mdash; like don't remove the dishpan from the kitchen &mdash; apparently aren't universally obvious.</p> <h2>10. People Use Airbnb for More Than Just Vacation Lodging</h2> <p>I've had a request to book my house for a school seminar &mdash; which I declined &mdash; and another from folks who are between moving out of their old home and moving into a new one. Since Airbnb encourages it, we typically hear from guests why they want to stay in our home, and it's kind of fun to learn that.</p> <h2>11. It's Hard to Get a Lived-In House &quot;Hotel Room&quot; Clean</h2> <p>Although our guests report positive experiences, we always get only four stars for cleanliness &mdash; despite the fact that we hire a professional cleaner to go over the house before they arrive, in addition to extra cleaning I do myself. This is a little embarrassing, but not that surprising when you think about it. Many rental houses are practically empty, with just a few cooking supplies in the kitchen. There's nothing in the closets or on the shelves to collect dust. Also, my home is almost 100 years old and the interiors are not up to date. Some surfaces are going to look a little dingy even when freshly scrubbed.</p> <h2>12. It's Hard to Find Lodging With a Lot of Beds for a Family</h2> <p>Most of the people who book our house are families, sometimes multiple generations traveling together. They've told us that our listing is often one of the few houses with enough beds for them available. When I see full-time rental units on Airbnb, I often wonder why more of them don't put a bunk bed or two in a room to increase the bed count.</p> <h2>13. Neighbors Are Probably Watching and Listening When You Rent Someone's Home</h2> <p>Every time we rent out our house, we ask neighbors to keep an eye on things. We never request that they <em>spy </em>on the guests, of course, but we tend to hear about it if the guests say anything about our house to neighbors, or if they do anything weird like put out an excessive amount of garbage on trash day.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div align="center"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F13-things-i-learned-from-renting-out-my-home-on-airbnb&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F13%20Things%20I%20Learned%20From%20Renting%20Out%20My%20Home%20on%20Airbnb.jpg&amp;description=13%20Things%20I%20Learned%20From%20Renting%20Out%20My%20Home%20on%20Airbnb" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <div align="center">&nbsp;</div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/13%20Things%20I%20Learned%20From%20Renting%20Out%20My%20Home%20on%20Airbnb.jpg" alt="13 Things I Learned From Renting Out My Home on Airbnb" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-things-i-learned-from-renting-out-my-home-on-airbnb">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/got-extra-space-make-money-and-meet-travelers-with-short-term-rentals">Got Extra Space? Make Money and Meet Travelers With Short-Term Rentals</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-good-money-from-airbnb">5 Easy Ways to Make Good Money From Airbnb</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/turn-your-home-into-a-rental-in-9-easy-steps">Turn Your Home Into a Rental in 9 Easy Steps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-should-you-get-a-vacation-rental-instead-of-a-hotel">When Should You Get a Vacation Rental Instead of a Hotel?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Real Estate and Housing Travel AirBnb home rental lessons learned life lessons real talk travel tips traveling vacation rental vrbo Thu, 09 Mar 2017 11:00:10 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1905993 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Great Places to Take the Family for Spring Break http://www.wisebread.com/8-great-places-to-take-the-family-for-spring-break <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-great-places-to-take-the-family-for-spring-break" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-477325706.jpg" alt="Finding great places to take the family for Spring Break" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's hard to believe, but spring is just around the corner, and that means planning your spring vacation. Unfortunately, traveling during peak travel weeks like Spring Break can be costly if you don't shop around. But there are plenty of destinations that offer superior value and family-friendly activities your kids will love.</p> <p>Here are eight warm-weather destinations that fit the bill for the perfect Spring Break trip. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-take-a-frugal-grownup-spring-break?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways to Take a Frugal Grown-up Spring Break</a>)</p> <h2>1. Orlando, Florida</h2> <p>The sheer number of hotels and resorts in and around Orlando makes this family-friendly city a superb option for Spring Break. Finding a good deal is easy with so many properties to choose from. Plus, three-star hotels start at just $130 per night.</p> <p>Orlando is also thick with activities for the entire family, and they extend far beyond just expensive Disney parks. Not only can you splurge for tickets to the Magic Kingdom or Animal Kingdom, but you can take your kids to water parks, Sea World Orlando, and museums like Ripley's Believe it or Not. And if you have a rental car, several family-friendly beaches are just a few hours away.</p> <h2>2. Tampa, Florida</h2> <p>Tampa, Florida is easy to get to since many major airlines offer nonstop flights from major hubs. Plus, a three-star beachfront hotel can cost as little as $130 per night during the last week of March.</p> <p>Aside from the beach, kids will have plenty to do in and around Tampa. The city itself is home to a Busch Gardens theme park, an aquarium, and the famous Lowry Park Zoo.</p> <h2>3. Orange Beach, Alabama</h2> <p>Orange Beach's location along the gulf coast makes it an easy drive from many parts of the Midwest. Orange Beach is only 14 hours from Chicago and 11 hours from St. Louis, for example.</p> <p>This beach town is brimming with cheap rental condos you can book on Airbnb or VRBO.com. There are also dozens of inexpensive family-friendly restaurants in Orange Beach, as well as the neighboring city of Gulf Shores.</p> <p>You can play mini golf, visit the local petting zoo, or take a dolphin sighting tour. But what you'll really want to do is sit back and relax on the world's whitest, sandiest beach while your kids play in the surf.</p> <h2>4. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina</h2> <p>Myrtle Beach is another warm weather spot where cheap hotels are plentiful. You can find numerous hotel deals at three-star properties for less than $100 per night.</p> <p>For example, the Sand Dunes Resort &amp; Spa sits on the beach and hosts its own small water park with a lazy river, yet costs less than $90 per night during the last week of March. Even the 3.5 star Litchfield Beach &amp; Golf Resort costs less than $100 per night during Spring Break, and that's despite its beach access and on-site amenities like a water park, tennis, and golf.</p> <p>If you tire of your resort, you can keep the kids busy on the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, at one of the seasonal water parks, or the Family Kingdom Amusement Park.</p> <h2>5. South Padre Island, Texas</h2> <p>South Padre Island is home to numerous vacation condos, plus plenty of low-cost hotels perfect for families. The Schlitterbahn Beach Resort, for example, complements its beachfront location with a huge lazy river and water park, yet comes with rates as low as $130 per night.</p> <p>South Padre Island is home to the famous Gravity Adventure Park theme park, baby sea turtle releases, and beach sports galore. There's also a Birding and Nature Center so you can observe birds and other wildlife in their natural, wetland environments.</p> <h2>6. Gatlinburg, Tennessee</h2> <p>Despite the huge fires that tore through much of Gatlinburg and the Smokies recently, the city is once again open for business. Not every attraction is open quite yet, but most are.</p> <p>You can still enjoy the beautiful mountain backdrop, head out for a hike, or visit Riley's Aquarium of the Smokies. The Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster, Space Needle, and Mirror Maze are all open, too. Most of the major restaurants and haunts for locals were also unscathed by the fire, as well.</p> <p>Obviously, Gatlinburg needs to bring tourism back, and this means low prices for the time being. Right now, Expedia shows affordable prices ($100 or less) for nearly all three-star Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge hotels for the last week of March.</p> <h2>7. Atlantic City, New Jersey</h2> <p>Atlantic City may not come with the warm weather you hoped for during Spring Break, but it can be downright cheap. At the moment, numerous hotels and vacation condos can be found for less than $100 per night.</p> <p>Fortunately, there's plenty to do in Atlantic City far from the flashy casinos. Take the kids out to explore the Atlantic City Boardwalk or to the Steel Pier Amusement Park. You'll also find many family-friendly restaurants, arcades, and more.</p> <h2>8. San Diego, California</h2> <p>San Diego may not seem like a frugal Spring Break spot, but it has enough lodging options and activities to make the cut. Plenty of hotels in San Diego and surrounding neighborhoods cost less than $100 per night during Spring Break.</p> <p>The big value in San Diego is just how much there is to do. The city is home to the world-famous San Diego Zoo, Sea World, and LEGOLAND. And the area's beautiful beaches, stretching from San Diego all the way down to La Jolla will blow you away. With the proximity to the beach, you can spend days playing in the surf and relaxing with the whole family.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div align="center"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-great-places-to-take-the-family-for-spring-break&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%20Great%20Places%20to%20Take%20the%20Family%20for%20Spring%20Break.jpg&amp;description=8%20Great%20Places%20to%20Take%20the%20Family%20for%20Spring%20Break" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <div align="center">&nbsp;</div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Great%20Places%20to%20Take%20the%20Family%20for%20Spring%20Break.jpg" alt="8 Great Places to Take the Family for Spring Break" width="250" height="374" align="middle" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-great-places-to-take-the-family-for-spring-break">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever">Flashback Friday: 40 Best Budget-Friendly Travel Tips Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-take-a-frugal-grownup-spring-break">4 Ways to Take a Frugal Grownup Spring Break</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Travel family vacation frugal travel spring break spring break destinations travel budget travel tips Mon, 06 Mar 2017 10:30:37 +0000 Holly Johnson 1902770 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 40 Best Budget-Friendly Travel Tips Ever http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_travel_camera_499233540.jpg" alt="Woman finding best budget-friendly travel tips" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Life gets hectic, work gets overwhelming, and we all daydream about packing our bags and jetting off to another country. Travel isn't just an escape, either. It's a love affair that enriches the soul and expands the mind by getting thrown into the middle of other cultures. Wanderlust doesn't need to suck your bank account dry, though. Here's how to do it on the cheap.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_beach_vacation_538041934.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-save-on-hotel-stays?ref=fbf">9 Simple Ways to Save on Hotel Stays</a> &mdash; Saving money on hotel stays has nothing to do with knowing a secret password provided directly by the owner or using a celebrity's name. You can reduce your overall hotel bill by making easy, simple moves when you book and at checkout.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-save-on-travel-gear?ref=fbf">7 Easy Ways to Save on Travel Gear</a> &mdash; Depending on where you're going, you might need certain travel gear to take along. Luckily, you don't need to sacrifice quality when shopping for said gear. You just need the right shopping strategy.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock-502640028.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/one-surprising-skill-that-can-save-you-money-when-you-travel?ref=fbf">One Surprising Skill That Can Save You Money When You Travel</a> &mdash; Nobody wants to look like an obvious tourist in another country. So to blend in, there's one skill that can help you save money, mingle with the locals, and see the coolest sights. Master it, and you're in.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-affordable-travel-items-that-you-shouldnt-leave-home-without?ref=fbf">9 Affordable Travel Items That You Shouldn't Leave Home Without</a> &mdash; So you want to pack light, eh? I feel you. However, these travel items are budget-friendly, and extremely helpful when you're on the road. Don't leave home without them!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock-613104682.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eat-these-6-foods-to-stay-healthy-while-traveling?ref=fbf">Eat These 6 Foods to Stay Healthy While Traveling</a> &mdash; Travel and healthy eating typically do not mix. Blame the vacation mentality, as it makes you feel like immortal royals who can consume endless amounts of salty grub and booze without any health repercussions. Since you're not a vampire with a sack full of cash, make sure to keep these healthy foods on you at all times and you'll fare better throughout your trip, and beyond.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time?ref=fbf">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a> &mdash; Booking flights is like a dance, and scoring a cheap flight to a faraway land is like executing a flawless pirouette with zero ballet experience. It's tricky, but not impossible. It takes practice, patience, and guidance from an expert. Lucky for you, we have a stellar expert to guide you.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-40-best-budget-friendly-travel-tips-ever">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-save-on-accommodations-online">8 Ways to Save on Accommodations Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-useful-items-hotels-usually-provide-for-free">14 Useful Items Hotels Usually Provide for Free</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel fbf flashback friday frugal travel save money travel hacks travel tips Fri, 03 Feb 2017 10:30:33 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1885877 at http://www.wisebread.com