YOUR ALL INCLUSIVE PLANNING TIMELINE-
Planning an All Inclusive Trip is so Very Exciting and sometimes as exciting planning as the trip itself!! Here’s your Schedule of what you need to do to plan your dream vacation, and when you should do it all. Don’t worry, Escape Destinations Travel is here to assist you every step of the way! Don’t hesitate to call or email us with any questions, that’s what we’re here for.
9-12+ Months Out-
At the end of the day, if you made it to the resort without a major hiccup, then your vacation is off to a really great start!
My best personal advice: don't stress, relax, and enjoy the memories your making and truly enjoy every moment because it all goes by so fast, it's all worth it in the end!
HAVE AN ABSOLUTELY AMAZING VACATION!
International Vacation Tips & Tricks!
By Jen Campbell of Escape Destinations Travel
Here are some tips, tricks and general guidelines that will help to make your international vacation very enjoyable.
When Planning Your Trip:
* Always use a Travel Consultant! Your travel professional will sort through any of your concerns or questions ahead of time, along the way to your destination, while traveling in the country, or when you’re headed home. Should you have a cancelled or even delayed flight, they are there being just a simple phone call away. Should you hotel have issues, be over-booked (yes sometimes it happens with a few), a medical emergency or other situations that can happen, they’ll be right there to assist you immediately and help you quickly get back on track to your destination!
* Do you have a group tour or cruise you’re trying to get to? Always plan on arriving to your destination in advance. We recommend at least a day before you need to be there. Let’s say you have a dream cruise you’ve saved up for a while for, and you chose to arrive the same day of embarkation. Should you inevitably get delayed due to weather, flight cancellations or a flat tire, you may not be able to board the cruise in time. Or, if your flight was cancelled and you were re-booked, your luggage may have gotten lost in transit. A 24-hour window allows your luggage to catch up with you, or a delay to not de-rail your dream trip. And always consider insurance, trip delay or luggage lost is normally covered by most travel insurance companies.
* Reconfirm all those fine details long before you depart on your vacation. If you are traveling over several time zones or even the International Dateline, remember to verify the arrival date(s) are the correct dates that you will be arriving at your destination. It’s imperative to pay very close attention to any overnight flight schedules regarding connections and arrivals that may interfere with your travel itinerary, group tours, cruises, etc.
* Booking your trip across several airlines can be confusing, is very stressful while traveling, and can even be potentially more expensive to your budgeted vacation dollars. It’s good to hire a travel professional who will be certain to review your itinerary when it’s first issued as well as prior to your date of travel. They can advise you as to whether it's really do-able as far as connection times, baggage handling, and other issues/concerns. The consultant can also serve as your one-call contact, should something unfortunately go wrong.
Packing For Your Trip:
* Don’t forget to carry your passport, important medication, emergency contact information (especially your travel professional’s contact info) and other critical information with you at all times. Never pack your important documents and medication in your suitcase that’s checked! Your carry-on, or on your person is the best option.
* When packing your suitcases for your vacation, consider opting for two smaller suitcases over one large suitcase. Many airports abroad are not equipped to easily handle a full cargo of luggage, and may be in a constant state of “catch-up”. Your luggage may not arrive with your flight (as it should) but could even arrive on a later flight, instead. This frequently occurs when you have several connections. When a flight is overweight, the first things to be off loaded are those heaviest bags. If your suitcase is not light, but is an overweight massive bag, it could be one to be off loaded first.
* Pack your itinerary, to include your travel professional’s full contact information and your own contact information while traveling in each piece of luggage you plan to bring on the vacation. This will help the airlines catch up with you and coordinate the delivery of your luggage during your trip, should this need arise.
* Pack everything that’s absolutely necessary into your carry-on. This could include the following: a full change of clothes, toiletries, and medication should your luggage not make it to your destination or be delayed. Pack items not readily available in stores at the destination and that you need. Also, some other items that may be handy: gum, candy, nuts, granola bars, that may help you with your energy in case a store/restaurant is closed whether in transit or when you’ve reached your final destination!
Have a Wonderful Vacation!!
What's essential to you when you travel Internationally? Comment Below.
International Toiletry Essentials to Pack for Your Next Trip-
By Jen Campbell of Escape Destinations Travel
Packing for your International Trip doesn't mean you have to go all out for your next vacation. With a few ideas, shared below, you'll be well on your way to being completely prepared with all your toiletry items needed.
· Place your travel size toiletries in a hanging toiletry bag or jewelry. Hotels have limited counter space. This can easily be hung over your bathroom door at the hotel.
· Bring any dual voltage, compact folding hair dryers/curling irons/flat-irons (if needed) on your vacation. Dual voltage appliances are practically the norm, now, and can easily be found at many local stores. If you can go without, this would be much better, and lighter!
· Most 3+ rated hotels will have hair dryers. But, what could be better than air drying your hair!
· Even with dual voltage appliances, you'll need an adaptor plug for the sockets. Of course, if not bringing dual-voltage appliances, you'll need to bring an electrical converter, as well, but be aware even the smallest of these can add as much as 5 lbs to your luggage weight.
· Many of the nice hotels abroad will provide at least a small bottle of shampoo, so be prepared. Bring a couple with you, at least, or fill travel bottles with your favorite products.
· Pack a cheap, dozen washcloths or handy facial/makeup wipes. They don't exist abroad (that I could find). Use one a day and simply toss.
· Pack a micro-fiber "turby towel." This is helpful to dry your hair, body, etc. I always carry my "turby towel" with me on my travels as it helps dry my hair quickly.
· Purchase double-purposed type products: shampoo/conditioner-in-one; tinted moisturizer instead of packing foundation + moisturizer.
· Don't forget the travel-sized products come in very handy while traveling overseas.
· Tweezers, nail polish remover pads (definitely not the bottle of liquid); emory boards, toothpicks, dental floss.
· Manicure scissors, small needle and thread kit (with common colors).
· Safety pins, in various assorted sizes.
· Barrettes, bobby pins, ponytail holders, hair clips, stretchy headband (good for cold weather, too).
· Perhaps consider packing a very small roll of duct tape (hey...it may come in handy to mend clothes, bandages, luggage if it's ripped, etc).
And remember, unless you’re planning on camping during the "Wild nights in Munich, during Oktoberfest" about anything you need, can be very easily purchased along the way!
3 Super Quick Tips for Traveling Abroad!
Don't laugh...but these have to do with paying attention to Your Precious Feet!
1. DO NOT SKIMP ON FOOTWEAR! Your feet are so worth it!
Vacations abroad are by their nature, very much walking, climbing and touring vacations. So many times you'll find yourself off the beaten path. The center of many towns are traffic free, so walking is how they are seen. Think of all of the cobblestone streets in Europe!
It's so important to purchase quality, well fitting, supportive and comfortable shoes. Make it a huge priority. Don't go "cheap" on the shoes, invest in something that will reap you healthy benefits. Buy them in advance before you leave for your overseas adventure and walk in them often, before-hand. Blisters or super sore feet can ruin your entire time abroad. You want to make memories, not nurse sore, aching feet.
2. INVEST IN GOOD SOCKS-
Do invest in good socks and good footwear.
Wool or synthetic blends will tend to help to cushion your feet, even when wet and easier to rinse out and wash by hand while abroad. They dry more than twice as fast, because they breathe well and wick moisture. Cotton will soak up sweat and moisture, and this isn't great when walking (especially if you're going long distances).
Such a quick, simple little tip, but worth so much! Trust me please. Your feet will thank you.
3. BRING (2) PAIRS OF COMFORTABLE SHOES-
Pack two pairs of comfortable, well-broken in walking shoes. Each day switch to the other pair if possible. Your feet will thank you. Find some that are versatile and can be worn with anything in your suitcase.
I try to remember to pack a pair of black flats and a pair of flat-soled boots, often, but sometimes even instead, a second pair of slip-ons in place of the boots. In either case, they can both be worn with slacks, jeans, or dresses. You can even switch them back and forth from day to evening-should you have a nice night on the town!
The reason has to do with various pressure points on your feet. No matter how well-fitting a pair of shoes may be to you, your feet tend to rest differently within them. By switching off shoes, you can give those pressure points in your feet a much needed break. This will lessen your chance for blisters or sore spots.
It’s another simple little traveling tip, but worth so much! Trust me. Your precious feet will thank you.
Do YOU have any particular shoe styles, or brands that have worked well for you on your travels, please share below!
Sometimes getting the “cheapest deal” isn’t always the Best Deal! By Jen Campbell of Escape Destinations Travel
We had an existing client phone us the other day saying their “cheap” All Inclusive Deal wasn’t such a deal after-all. They had decided to go with one of those online discount travel sites, to book their All Inclusive Deal, because it was hundreds cheaper than we could offer, only to find out (they realized a month out from their trip) that it did NOT include their flights nor did it include their transfers. The client was in an absolute panic because all she had now, was a resort (hotel) booked to a beautiful tropical destination, without flights nor a way to get there once they arrived to the airport and also didn't have a way to get back to the airport from the resort, when the trip was over. And they didn't bother to compare our "vacation package" to the online discounted travel one at the time of booking with this competitor! Yikes!!!
With their vacation resort being nearly an hour+ away from the closest airport, the transfers would cost them over $200 each, and then the flights were roughly $600 a piece, round trip. So that “bargain trip” was not such a bargain anymore. She now needed to scramble to find airfare. But, thankfully we were able to recommend a few flights to her and add in the transfers into a sweet little packaged deal. We saved the day and felt like a hero!!
I completely understand getting the best bang for your buck (hey....I've been called frugal by my own family)…but cheapest is not always the best! Our original trip that we quoted the client months prior, actually ended up costing them less with our company, when you added in the all important round-trip airfare and round-trip transfers. It really helps to have the complete picture when you’re comparing prices. It’s important to compare apples-to-apples to get the best price. And...it's super important to have a professional on your side, who can decipher what's really needed for a "complete packaged" vacation.
AND one more thing….did you know we Price Match? Yes, many times should you find a lower price, we can match it for you (as long as it's the same identical trip/room type/flights, etc.)!! So do your homework and understand the price your seeing may not include all the other things that can quickly add up costing you more money in the end.
We think our client learned her lesson and we sincerely hope they will continue to use our business in the future!
7 Great Reasons to Honeymoon on a Cruise Ship!
By Jen Campbell, of Escape Destinations Travel
Many couples choose to Honeymoon on a Cruise Ship now as their Vacation Option, we’ll share with you 7 quick reasons why Honeymooning on a Cruise is really a great idea:
All in all, vacation time (especially for Honeymooners) goes by super quickly. Whether you choose to stay by land or by sea you’ll create memories to be cherished forever. We hope our Honeymoon list was helpful to you in your decision making process! We can help you plan that Dream Honeymoon, regardless of the location, should you not wish to stress out about another detail. It’s what we love to do!!
Have comments, please share with us below.
WHAT COULD BE MORE ROMANTIC THAN A PRIVATE, ROMANTIC GETAWAY IN A CASTLE HOTEL IN GERMANY?
By Jen Campbell of Escape Destinations Travel
Old castles, super amazing cuisine, medieval history, interesting and unique culture and people are just few of the reasons to honeymoon in Germany!
Just imagine, some of the most exciting cities in Europe are at your easy disposal: Heidelberg, Munich, Hamburg, Dresden, Berlin, Frankfurt, Fussen, Dusseldorf and so many others - as well as quintessential inviting small towns and sweet, charming, villages offer you a truly unforgettable honeymoon experience like no other.
No matter where you are in gorgeous Germany, it seems that a history filled castle or palace; a beautiful serene park or crisp, quiet lake; or an ancient medieval church are never very far away from you.
Imagine beautiful Berlin, the capital and the country’s largest city, is one of the most exciting destinations in all of Europe. Ninety-five percent of it was destroyed in World War II and has been rebuilt since the wall that divided the city was torn down over 20 years ago. This city never sleeps, if you're looking for amazing night life in a city full of action packed adventure, Berlin is your place.
Wherever you travel in Germany, you’ll discover amazing vibrant cities with fascinating histories, charming historical medieval towns and peaceful, serene, scenery. Adventurous (true romantic) travelers might like to drive the “Romantic Road” from Warzburg to Fussen, 220 miles of breathtaking pastoral scenery dotted with historic villages, churches and castle after castle. Take a stop along one of many little picturesque inns and restaurants overlooking the water. Stop alongside the road for several pictures, and a glass of wine or stein of beer. Or, you can visit the ultra romantic Black Forest (think alpine villages at the foot of the alps), cruise along the winding, divine Danube River, or travel around Lake Constance.
It doesn’t take long to discover that Germany is value packed and oh so very romantic. Prices are slightly lower here than in many other major European destinations. Theatre, ballet and opera tickets are very affordable in Germany as well. Food prices are slightly lower as well, and quality of the cuisine and local wines and local brews are amazing.
Imagine waking up to the stunning Neuschwanstein Castle right outside your balcony room suite. Or, how about honeymooning in numerous castle hotels, still operating today.
Whatever you choose to do, your honeymoon in Germany will be like a fantastic fairytale that neither one of you will soon forget!
Consider contacting one of our Germany Specialists today, in fact Jen Campbell lived in Germany for 6 years and has practical experience with this gorgeous country and is practically fluent in German. She can recommend quaint little towns and amazing inns to stay at while you're honeymooning in this amazing land.
Honey Fund! If you've been watching our Facebook postings, you'll notice that we've signed up with Honey Fund! This is a free service where future brides and grooms can register their wedding on our site, and send this information to all the wedding guests. Guests can choose to send monetary gifts to the future Bride and Groom. They in turn can collect the money and use it for their honeymoon. The site says that wedding parties saw around $2600+ in money to use towards the Honeymoon of their Dreams! Please note, we are not paid for this service, it's just something we wanted to add for our brides to help make their honeymoon plans easier to plan and more feasible for their budget.
Check out: http://escapedestionationstravel.honeyfund.com for more details! This will also work for graduates, those earning funds for a charity fundraiser. What a super terrific idea, we think!
If you like what you read you can learn what to do for your next trip by downloading my Honeymoon Planning Checklist HERE.
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