Staying Safe On The Road

There’s nothing more important than your own safety. When you’re at home, you always make sure that you lock all your doors and windows, that you get taxis home from parties, and that you don’t make too much small talk with strangers. But for some reason, the second we start travelling, all that caution often tends to fly out of the window. Here are some tips on how to stay safe when you’re travelling…

Budget Carefully

It’s important to make sure that you don’t blow all of your money too quickly. It can be tempting to buy tons of souvenirs and to splash out on exciting new food, but the fact is that you need to make a daily budget and stick to it. The best thing about money isn’t what you can buy with it – it’s the freedom that it gives you. If you have spare money then you can leave that bed bug infested hostel with the scary hulking guy in the corner of the shared room, and stay in a nicer hotel for the night while you regroup. Money means that you can get a taxi home instead of waiting on a street corner for a night bus for an hour. Make sure that you budget for things like that as well as fun treats.

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Know The Area

Obviously it’s impossible to know absolutely everything about a city that you’re travelling to, but you should get to know the local public transport system to some extent so that you know how you’re going to get home whenever you go out, and you should also make sure that you have a local taxi company number in your phone in case you want to get home quickly. Google around on sites like www.travelsphere.co.uk to find out where you should go in the local area, and make sure that you talk to fellow travellers to figure out where you shouldn’t go by yourself, particularly at night.

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Don’t Carry Too Much

You should make sure that you’re as mobile as possible at all times – wear comfortable shoes and make sure that you haven’t over packed. Not being able to carry your backpack and move properly really isn’t a particularly safe way to be. When you go out in the evenings, make sure that your passport is in the money belt around your waist instead of in your bag, and that you aren’t carrying too much money. You should also ensure that all your expensive things are locked away at your hostel in a safe.

 

Trust Your Instincts

Your instincts are the most important things that you’ll travel with. If you feel uncomfortable in a situation, don’t feel any shame or embarrassment about getting out of there immediately. Your own safety should be your priority at all times, and your instincts might have picked up on something that the rest of your brain hasn’t quite caught up with, like someone sitting too close to you or looking at you in a threatening way. Make sure you use the cab number in your phone or hail a licensed taxi to get back to wherever you’re staying.

 

Christmas in Peacock Lane

After living in Portland, OR, for many years, I finally got to visit this place that becomes magical during the holiday season. It’s in a neighborhood in the SE Portland which becomes pedestrian only area for the last two weeks of every December.

This is an old Portland tradition since 1920. Every house here are fully decorated with extravagant Christmas lightnings and ornaments. My girls had a blast walking in front of every house and checking out all the different themes and dazzling scenes.

The event is absolutely free, but we had to park couple blocks away from Peacock Lane. It does get crowded pretty quickly as soon as it gets dark.

Check out the pictures of Peacock Lane in Portland, Oregon…hope you like them.

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The Things Every Modern Traveler Should Do

To be a truly modern traveler, there are some things that you definitely need to do. There is no sense in wasting time and money when there are so many contemporary ways to save both of those things. And there are wise ways to use the internet and some prior knowledge to make the most of any trip.

Use Apps to Find Improvised Accommodation

There are so many great apps that can help you out when you’re traveling in a foreign country. Apps like Airbnb can be particularly useful when you are looking for ways to save money on accommodation. Those city hotels can be really expensive, so why not stay somewhere that’s a little more affordable for you? You can find places to stay for the night using these apps, so it makes sense to give them a try. It makes traveling truly affordable for everybody, so that can only be a good thing.

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Research and Discuss Locations Online

It’s always best to make sure that you know as much as possible about the location you’re heading to before you get there. This gives you a head start and helps to ensure you don’t waste time once you get there. Thanks to the internet, there are plenty of ways in which you can research and learn more about a location. You should also use forums to talk to people who have traveled there before. You can often learn a lot from other people. Things like the India travel forum can help a lot when you are heading to a location for the very first time. Take advantage of other people’s knowledge and experience to avoid mistakes.

Go Where Other Tourists Don’t

Real explorers don’t stick to the tourist hotspots. Instead, they take the time to explore the country a bit more than that. You don’t get to see much of a country and the way it works when you stick to the tourist traps too much. So, learn more, use your research, and go to the kinds of places that most tourists don’t. This is the only real way to see the country for what it really is and understand the people’s way of life. If you ask me, that’s what traveling is about. And it’s something that more and more people are now doing as the tourist traps become less interesting to people.

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Use Your Social Media Accounts Wisely

There is a right way and a wrong way to use social media when you’re traveling. The first thing you should do is make sure that you use it in a way that is safe. If you are traveling alone, then you could be at greater risk of being followed because you’re vulnerable. And if you let the whole world know where you are on social media, the risk is even greater. So, you should make sure that your accounts are set to private. This means that you can control who sees what you post on these sites. You can also use social media to stay in contact with everyone back home too.

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Common Travel Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

We are only human, and we are prone to make mistakes. When you are traveling, the results can be a little more dramatic than they normally would be, though. We aren’t in our normal environment and don’t have all of our friends and family around us. So if things go wrong, it can prove to be expensive or mean you have to end your travels. So here are some common mistakes that people make when they travel. Then you can know what to look for and make sure you avoid them.

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Not Getting the Right Visas and Travel Documents

One easy mistake people make, is that they don’t get the right travel documents that they will need. Certain countries need certain pieces of information about you before hand, to allow you in. Take the United States of America, for example. You need to get a pre-clearance ‘visa’ if you are going to be there for under 90 days. So you should apply online, somewhere like www.official-esta.com. If you arrive and don’t have this filled in, the chances are very slim that you will be allowed in. So check this kind of thing as soon as you have booked flights.

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Not Having Enough Time Left On Your Passport

A lot of people think that if their passport is in date, then it will all be fine. But some countries require there to be a certain length of time left on your passport. The US needs you to have at least six months left on your passport. Countries like the United Arab Emirates need you to have at least three months left on the passport. So you do need to bear this in mind. Make sure you allow yourself enough time to get a new passport before you travel if needed. You can find more information on a site like www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

Overpacking

When you are traveling, you don’t need to pack as light as possible. There will be certain restrictions on your method of transport. Plus the fact that you will have to take the luggage around with you. So you don’t want it to be too heavy. So only pack what you know you will use. If you’re not sure, then leave it behind. It is always good to have a little extra space in your suitcase to take things back with you.

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Not Using a Budget

When you are planning a trip, you will no doubt have a budget. The worst thing that you can do is to not stick to that budget. If you run out of money, then things can be pretty disastrous. So set a budget before you go and check on how you are doing at the end of each day. You don’t want to miss out on doing something, just because you ran out of money.

Missing a Flight

When you need to catch a flight, you need to allow plenty of time. You need to be at the airport often around two hours ahead of the flight. But you should take into consideration traffic and times of transportation to get you there. If you miss a flight, it can prove rather costly. Not all travel insurers will cover for it either. So plan ahead and allow plenty of time.

Home and Abroad: Bring Father Christmas To Life This Winter

Christmas is always a magical time, and it’s even more exciting when you have children who still believe in Father Christmas. From his jingling bells to his big round belly, and his team of reindeer to his promise of presents, Santa Claus is kids number one favorite man come Christmas! Bring Kriss Kringle to life in as many ways you can this Christmas, and reignite the magical spirit of one of the favorite months of the year. Let’s take a peek at how you can bring Santa into your home both home and abroad.

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Picture source: Hu.Wikipedia.Org

Father Christmas In His Own Home

At Journey Around The Globe we love making magical memories, and those that you can share with your children are all the more special. Take your children on a spellbinding trip across the globe to Santa’s workshop, and give them a true winter wonderland experience. If you want to see Father Christmas in the North Pole or in fact in his home in Finnish Lapland, then it’s time to take a winter holiday that will beat all others. In Lapland you’ll be greeted with a bewitching snowy landscape, reindeer sledding and cozy log cabins. All perfect for creating the true spirit of Christmas. In Finnish Lapland, your children will get to make snow sculptures, bake cookies and take snowmobile rides. They can even spend an afternoon searching and visiting Santa in his own home. Nothing beats meeting this magical man more than seeing him in action in his magical winter workshop. For the adults, there are roaring log fires, cross-country skiing and warm Finnish saunas. And for the kids? Copious amounts of snowy fun for an experience of a lifetime! They will be able to take husky rides, join in with Christmas crafts, visit the reindeer farm and eat their dinner in a restaurant made from ice. Take them across the globe this year for a white winter they will treasure forever.

In Your Own Home

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Picture source: Pexels

Christmas Eve is always such fun when you have children. As the suspense builds up, they’re barely able to contain their excitement. And they will want to stay up all night waiting for an appearance from Father Christmas. Luckily most will burn out by midnight, and you can get on with the Ho Ho Ho duty of bringing Father Christmas into your home. Be sure to make Christmas cookies with your children on Christmas Eve to leave out for Santa. Let them have fun decorating with glitter and sprinkles too. Make sure you also go shopping for carrots and milk too. Help them pen a letter to Father Christmas to leave out that night. And make sure you have one written by the man himself to leave in return for them. Get your children to make reindeer dust out of glitter and oats and tell them it’s to lure the reindeer into your home. Leave trodden snow footprints outside their bedroom doors and by the Christmas tree. Make these with flour, talcum powder or fake snow. Get some jingle bells and give them a little tinkle just as your children are falling asleep. And make sure to leave half eaten cookies and carrots for them to find in the morning. If you have a fireplace also leave a few coal marks so, they can be sure Santa has been.

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