Monthly Archives: Sep 2014

flowers in india
Posted by Amanda, Recommendations
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5 Books That Will Inspire You To Travel

I’m always looking for a good read when I’m on the road but what I love more is reading books that make me want to discover their settings in person! Here are 5 books that will inspire you to travel!

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Gili Meno Indonesia
Budgeting, Planning, Posted by Amanda
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Creating and Sticking to your Budget

Have you ever dreamed of going to South Africa or Australia and then heard that it was ungodly expensive so you ditched the idea? You don’t have to be making six figures to go on vacation or do some long-term traveling; you just need to know how to budget. It may sound silly but when you are using multi-colored currencies of pink, blue, purple and yellow you can easily forget that you are not playing with monopoly money. The worst thing in the world is to buy a latte in Paris, only to find out later that it cost $7, trust me it happens and all adds up!

I’m going to give you a step-by-step guide (using a fake destination) on how I budgeted for my international trip and even came home with an extra $2,000 in my account.

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prague map
Food, Planning, Posted by Amy, Transportation, Travel Activities
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Planning a Trip to Prague

I am super excited that I was able to sneak a short trip to Prague in in-between two other work trips to Barcelona and San Francisco. I only have 2.5 days, and need to do some aweseomsauce planning to really take advantage of my time in the Czech Republic. This method of planning trip activities can be used for any place you visit.

Check back in a few weeks to see what my actual trip was like compared to the plan!

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bag pack
packing, Planning, Posted by Amanda, Types of Travel
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How to Pack for a Long-Term Trip

When I decided to take a 7-month trip I was terrified at the thought of traveling with nothing but a backpack. Before I left I compiled a list of everything I thought I would need and it turns out that only half of it fit (after I packed my beauty supplies, some things are necessities that could not be skipped)! Even after removing a few things, it turns out that I still packed way more than was necessary. Here is the list that I put together after my return with the only items I really needed while I was away. I’ve added some links of some of my favorite products because they made life on the road so much easier and I absolutely loved them!  In a future post Amy and I will tell you why we love some of these products so much.  This packing list is a combination of necessities if you plan on staying in hotels, hostels or other basic accommodations.

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St. Regis Punta Mita
Planning, Posted by Amy, Types of Travel
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The Difference Between Travel and a Vacation

Recently at a wedding in Madison, my friend Val asked if I had any upcoming travel. I told her I was going to spend a week at a resort in Mexico in December. I added “I’m going to lay on a beach all week, so it’s not real travel.” Immediately, I started wondering what “real travel” meant, what I event meant by it, and if you could define such a thing.

Luckily before I could get too deep into a rat hole of my own thoughts, Val said something that was both simple and profound: There’s a difference between travel and a vacation.

“There’s a difference between Travel and a Vacation”

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zurich
Food, Planning, Posted by Amy, Travel Activities
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Exploring Food & Drinks While Traveling – Part 1: Food Tours

Food is such an important part of culture and experiencing food and drinks the way locals do can be one of the most memorable parts of travel. This is the first in a 4-part series on how to really experience food culture during your travels. Stay tuned for Parts 2 through 4, coming soon!

Part 1: Food Tours
Part 2: Cooking Classes
Part 3: Wine, Beer, Liquor, and other Drinks
Part 4: Other ways to Experience Food

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delta plane
Miles and Points, Posted by Amy
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Getting Elite Status and How Loyalty Pays Off

I was looking at my upcoming itineraries the other day and realized I had booked a flight from SFO -> SEA on the wrong day. Oops! But no biggie… I just called the special Delta Diamond Medallion Line and an understanding agent changed my flight for free.

Usually when you make a flight change, there’s a steep $200 change fee. However, the customer service representative changed my flight and waived the fee. Why? Well, I can’t say for certain but as a Delta Diamond Medallion, I get some really great customer service.

I’ve had a lot of good experiences recently due to having elite status in various programs, and I wanted to post about a few of them so you can see the real, tangible benefits of sticking with one hotel, airline, or car rental program.

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Pokhara Nepal
Accommodations, Planning, Posted by Amanda, Traveling Alone
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Finding Accommodations Mid-Travel

The first time that I ever looked for lodging while on the road was in Indonesia. A friend had told me about this perfect, incredible, fabulous, wonderful, amazing, cheap little place she found on this tiny island but there was one problem…..she forgot the name of it! Since it was such a small island, she told me that all I needed to do upon arrival was ask for a man named Ronni, who was the owner, and I would be pointed in the right direction. After walking around for 20 minutes barefoot up and down the beach in 95-degree heat, a 40lb bag on my back and asking about 30 strangers for Ronni, I finally found the man of the hour! And she was right, his bungalows were perfect, incredible, fabulous, wonderful, amazing and cheap!

Finding accommodation mid-travel does not always have to be this hard. Here are 3 easy ways to easily find lodging while on the road.

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switzerland_serenity
packing, Planning, Posted by Amy
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5 Ways to Travel More Efficiently

After oversleeping, handling a small crisis, and making sure my house was in pristine condition for weekend renters, I had exactly 1 hour and 30 minutes to pack and make it to the airport in time for my flight this evening. I was so busy all day I didn’t even have time to brush my teeth.

This was a stressful situation, but because I’ve optimized every part of packing and getting to the airport, I actually made the flight with about 15 minutes to spare before the boarding door closed. WHEW!!

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Gili Meno sunrise
Posted by Amanda, Traveling Alone, Types of Travel
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10 Benefits of Traveling Alone

Traveling alone to a foreign land can sometimes seem daunting. But you’ll find that solo travel will be one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll ever have. Here are the top 10 benefits of traveling alone.

Do What You Want, When You Want

Spontaneity is the spice of life! The freedom to do what you want is much easier when you don’t have to ask for someone else’s input, whether that’s skipping out on the castle tour that sounded like a great idea yesterday or staying a few extra days in your current location. You are in control and can go wherever the wind blows you. One day I arrived to a beautiful city in the Philippines and I was so tired from moving around that I spent 24-hours in my hotel room, watching BBC and surfing the web. It was exactly what I needed!

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