Think you can’t afford a travel agent?

 

When you go to a doctor, you don’t get out of there without paying a fee? [Okay, maybe that’s not the best example, because there is insurance to consider.] But what do you do if you need a plumber or electrician? You’ll pay them, right? A lot of people consider working with a travel agent something they simply can not afford. Today we are going to look at some reasons why that might not necessarily be true.

First of all, many of us do not charge a fee for our services. You may be asking how we can do that and still make a living. I’ll explain. When you book any type of hotel, car rental, cruise, theme park, etc. all type of businesses will pay us travel agents a commission any time we book with them. That is why often we won’t charge you a dime to work with you. If you are charged a fee to work with a travel agent, the fee is likely going to be applied to your balance when you do book your trip.

We also keep informed of travel deal . We will work with you to make sure you get the best deals around. In the age of the internet, a lot of ttravel agents work from home, often working through a host agency which is great for you because the travel agents work together and bounce ideas off each other.

I would love to know your thoughts about any of this, or any questions you might have. I would love you to know just how much I can help you.

 

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Newbie cruise mistakes

First, let me say that taking that week off at Christmas seems to have brought back life into my business. I have several projects I want to take on. January is just going to be a crazy month. We have out of town family this week. The last week of January we are going to a conference. And I’m not sure if I am going to work or not, if I do I won’t have much time. I’m hoping February kind of slows down some…

But anyway… Any time you are brand new at something, you are going to make mistakes, that’s just part of life. But reading this might help you avoid some of these mistakes.

  • Just because a cruise says it’s all inclusive does not mean you shouldn’t bring money. All inclusive can mean a lot of different things. You should always read the fine print to know what is and what isn’t included, it is best to know this before you leave.
  • We were talking about shore excursions yesterday in Shore excursions, but it is usually best to figure out which excursions you want to go on before you board your ship. there are only a certain number of people that they can take on these trips, and they tend to fill up quickly.
  • I know that sometimes you don’t really have a choice, but if you can choose to fly at least the day before your cruise leaves. Airplanes are known for being late. They can also lose your luggage. Just avoid that frustration.
  • And if the most important thing you’re looking for on a cruise is peace and quiet, don’t go when school is not in session. A lot of families go on cruises. And yes, a lot of cruiselines have excellent children’s programs, but some parents take their children in order to spend time with them. Go when school is going to be busy so that you will avoid children, if that’s something you’re interested in.

I decided at the last minute to go on and take Christmas week off. I was tired of working and was ready for a break. I ended up doing a lot of reading and spending some extra time with family.. And now I’m ready to settle into work again.

Yesterday my family started discussing places that they would like to visit. If travel  is on your 2018 bucket list, and international travel is something you have not done, or have not done in would be to a while, here are some things you might want to think about.

  • First, do you have your passport? And if you do, how long do you have before it will expire? Most everyone is going to want you to have a good six months between the time you travel and the expiration date.
  • Security lines are just part of our lives now. Arrive early for your flight. If you are planning on doing a lot of traveling, you might want to apply for a Global Entry. Do your pre flight check in online.
  • You will want to be sure to know about the currency the country you are visiting uses. You will also want to figure whether it is best to exchange money when you arrive or before you get there.
  • Do you know the language of the place where you are going? If you don’t, your simplest solution  download a version of Google Translator. Be safe and download the offline version.

More places to consider for next Christmas

I have several things I want to get to today. We are going to a Christmas party tonight, and by then I want to be finished with computer stuff for a couple of days. I am going to put up my Christmas letter soon. o let’s get started.

  • Do you want to go somewhere your children will love? Try Tuscany, Italy. They’ll have a Santa village featuring a castle. They have some really nice places to stay. And it’s Italy, so children and adults alike should enjoy the food.
  • I love Christmas and all the celebrations, but I’m not a big fan of snow. It is beautiful for sure, but I don’t like being cold. If you feel the same way, you might want to try the beautiful island of Malta. Here you will have the opportunity to celebrate the deeper meaning of Christmas. There will be a lot of midnight masses you can choose from. There will also be caroling to take part in.
  • I am going to get a little sentimental for a minute. My grandparents lived in Virginia, and we used to go every Christmas. Going to the Greenbrier was something I’ve heard a lot about, I think some of my family may have gone some years to play in the snow. I always stayed with my Grandma. Anyway, the Greenbrier is a really nice place in west Virginia, and they do a lot for the holidays.

I am going to put up my Christmas letter soon. And after that I’m not sure when I might be on again. I hope everyone has a wonderful Labor Day Christmas.

Where to spend Christmas 2018

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The most wonderful time of the year is once again upon us. My plan is to work some tomorrow, and then from there it is going to get a little spotty from there. I’m not going to work Christmas Day for sure, and don’t really know about the rest of the week. The whole month of January is kind of up in the air because we have coming in at different times and things like that.

A lot of you are already starting your Christmas vacation as I write this. But I wanted to do something festive anyway. So let’s look at some places you might want to go next year.

  • I don’t know about you, but our family loves Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”, it isn’t really the Christmas season until we’ve watched that movie. [And the only real movie is the one with George C Scott in it.] Why not try to go to London next Christmas? A lot of hotels are going to provide you with some nice meals on Christmas Day as well as New Year’s. You are going to love their Christmas markets. And I’m sure there are some nice plays and musical productions that will take place around this festive time of year.
  •  Are you tired of not having a white Christmas? You should try to go to Finland next year. Everything is bound to be covered with snow there. There is a city there that will make you think you’ve somehow arrived in the North Pole itself. You will definitely see some reindeer, and there will also be elves. Who knows? You might also see a big man with a big beard in a red suit, though they do say he’s kind of busy this time of year.
  • Is The Nutcracker a tradition in your home? You might want to consider St Petersburg next Christmas. There is nothing more traditional than going to a ballet in Russia. Again, you are sure to see snow here.

Let’s get back to this tomorrow. I would love to know your thoughts.

Some more travel tips

I have an evening with some dear friends planned, which will be a treat. But let me get through work stuff before I get into other stuff.

  • Put your hotel address and room number into your phone when you arrive. You are going to be jetlagged. You’re likely going to be spending long days playing tourist. It is easy to forget mundane, but important things like this.
  • Let your credit card company and bank know about your travel plans. You don’t want to be to use your cards while you’re away, do you? Let them know where you will be when, so that they don’t think someone else has your cards and shut you down.
  • And you know the saying, “Do not put all your eggs in one basket”? Do not keep all your money and cards in the same. Keep some on each person traveling. Keep other money in your hotel room.
  • It is a good idea to put sunscreen on before you leave your hotel room. You might not know what all the day could hold as far as weather. You will also want to keep some with you.
  • People from other parts of the world are going to need do things differently. That is just a fact of life. And you will like some of the things and not like others.

More travel tips

I’m kind of feeling like I’m in between in a lot of ways. I’m in between travel agent hosts, don’t think I’ve found the right one yet. But with Christmas coming up, and more importantly needing to practice the new communication device I’m trying to get, I’m just doing what has to be done day to day, and putting other things off until after the holidays and our celebrations.

Anyway, let’s get back to these travel tips.

  • Especially if you’re going out of the country, sometimes it’s best to buy travel insurance. Insurance can help you when things are lost or stolen. It will also help if you have a medical emergency or something like that.
  • Remember what your mother said when you were going to camp? “Don’t forget to pack your underwear”. In fact, this is something that you will want to take extra of. An alternative to this would be washing your things out in the sink.
  • The article that I’m reading says that you might want to pre plan your outfit so that you aren’t wearing all the same colors in all your pictures. Personally, I would care a lot more about comfort and clothes you aren’t especially attach to on a trip.
  • Since checking bags now costs, a lot of people are putting everything they’ll need in their carry ons. Even if you are going on an extended trip, you will want to pack your essentials in your carry on box. Here I’m talking about your toothbrush and toothpaste, some clothes, your camera  and hings like that.
  • Please stay hydrated during those long flights. I know it’s fun to drink free booze, but that will not help your cause at all. Drinking too much will also really not help you get through your jetlag.

Preparing for vacation #2

I apologize about yesterday. I’m trying to get a new device because the device, and the loaners I’m getting, seem to keep dying on me. I’m trying out the device I am going to get, but I’m not getting far on figuring out how to access the computer on the new device.. Things just feel kind of crazy right now. I’ll be so glad to get my new device and know what I’m doing there.

Let’s get back to the discussion we started yesterday, I mean Tuesday, about Do not be stressed out on vacation

  • Remember that you are on vacation once you get where you are going. Do not check your e-mail every ten minutes. If you feel like you need to check your e-mail, it is best to check only once a day. Make yourself turn your mind from work to other pursuits.
  • The same goes for that attachment to your body that we all call a phone. Set a time when you will use it, and then put it away. It is usually best to pick one specific time, like first thing in the morning, or when your family goes to bed. The rest of the time, put your phone away.
  • You know yourself better than anyone, and you’ll know how much to plan during your vacation. Are you someone who likes to plan everything, or do you want to go with the flow more? A lot of people like to plan one big event each day to keep from getting bored.
  • You are one out of a billion people in this world. If you take a week or two off, the world will go on. If you work a large company, even they may not notice that you are gone.

Do not be stressed out on vacation

I’m kind of feeling like I’m in the middle of a lot of different things. I’m getting a new communication device, and while I have the new communication device to borrow, I’m trying to figure out how things work, trying to figure out the computer stuff and all that. I haven’t decided on a host agency, just haven’t had a lot of time to figure that out. Between the new communication device and traveling, time just doesn’t seem to be plentiful. I’m also trying to get my writing out there better, but again that’s a very slow process, especially these days.

I know I’ve said this before, and I’m sure I’ll say it again, but I have several things coming up in January, mostly visits with out of town family. I don’t know how much I am going to work during that time, we’ll just see how everything goes..

America seems to live on stress, but being stressed all the time is horrible for our bodies. Today let’s look at some tips that should help you get more out of your vacations.

  • It is nto feel like you have all your work done and all your ducks in a row before you leave town. But remember that you’ll always have a lot to catch on once you return. No amount of preparation will enable you to come home to quiet and easy days at work. And try not to stress if everything does not get done before you leave.
  • The world will go on if you don’t leave your phone number and e-mail where you’ll be the whole time you’re on vacation. You are going away for a reason, and that reason is not to work. Limit the times you check your phone. Don’t leave your number if you don’t have to.
  • Things are going to happen when you’re on vacation that you wish wouldn’t. Maybe your flight will be delayed. Maybe your hotel isn’t what you expected. Don’t worry about it. Learn to go with the flow. Focus on enjoying the people you are vacationing with. Take the book you’ve been wanting to read. It’s time to just relax.
  • This is not the time to brainstorm your next big project at work. This is a time to relax and just be still. If you see something you want to do just for the fun of it, go for it. Don’t think of all that is waiting for you once you get home. Enjoy where you are at the moment.

Reasons to visit Nassau

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It’s rather nasty outside, but I’m not complaining. It’s actually turning into a great day to get work done. I’ve actually started on a big project I have wanted to do for sometime, but I haven’t felt like I had the time lately. However, it’s started, and I’m having a great time working through this. I do want to make sure that this gets done, so let’s get started.

If this winter weather has you down, it might be time to look into a beach trip. Here are some reasons you might want to consider Nassau .

  • Junkanoo days, which happen in late December, are some of the most exciting times that happen on this island. I say that, though it’s really the nights that are so full of festivities. They will have parades each night.
  • Do you like to run? Do you want to be known for liking to run? There is a marathon that takes place January thirteenth and fourteenth. Those brave enough can run the whole thing. There is also a half marathon and a 5K.
  • Is part of your winter angst that you can’t enjoy your favorite sport? Nassau has two great golf courses. Any resort you go to should have tennis courts as well. They will also have racquetball most anywhere you would want to stay.
  • Do you know sunlight is extremely good for your health? It boosts your immune system, and makes us happier and brighter. Why not treat yourself to some fun in the sun time?
  • I mainly listen to either Christian or country music, and so I don’t know much about these stars. But Kool and the Gang will be performing live at the Atlantis resort on New Year’s Eve. Don’t like them? How about Sting? They will also be performing live on New Year’s Eve.

I love to know your thoughts about any of this.