Preparations to make when traveling abroad

Should you be getting ready to travel abroad for the first time, the opportunity can be both exciting and intimidating. Happy as you are that you are just about to conquer new lands, you might be worried about your personal safety and the expense involved. With so many travel advisories being issued every few days, even the most hardened traveler has reason to exercise caution. This, however, should not discourage you from enjoying your vacation and, with proper planning you’ll discover that it is possible to enjoy your foreign trip.

Understand the conditions at destination
Since you are heading to a place you’ve never visited before, the least you could do is find out as much about the destination as possible especially if you are travelling alone. Should you have chosen to head to the naturally volatile destinations such as the Middle East always make sure that you make your hotel booking through a travel agency. While a destination could be going through a period of turmoil, there are always large areas of every destination that are never dangerous and your travel agent will know them.
Booking through an agent also helps you avoid some of the unpleasant surprises that confront travelers who book without help. An agent will help you know the kind of ground travel expenses you’ll incur at destination, the exact location of the hotel and how close your accommodation will be to important amenities. While an online search will indicate where the hotel is located and even show you pictures of the rooms, there are specifics that can never be fully verified online especially as relates to the neighborhood of the hotel.

Clarify currency conversion rates
For many destinations in the world, it is possible to make your booking in US dollars which solves a major problem for most travelers. However, when you reach your destinations, there are many transactions which you might have to make in the local currency and unless you know the correct rate before departure you might end up failing to stick to your budget. Again, a travel agent will help you with conversion rates as well as the possibility of exchange rate fluctuations. While it is important to carry an adequate amount of cash on your trip, the really prudent thing is to make most of your payments through a credit card.

Quite clearly, with proper and advance planning there’s nothing that should make you fail to enjoy your first trip abroad.

Story written by Cda SEO Company.  Thank you for your contribution, without you none of this would be possible.  We welcome all stories and will do our best to submit them.

Some Hotel Booking Mistakes to Beware of

If you are a frequent traveler who regularly uses hotel accommodation, you’ll realize that making some mistakes when booking your hotel could become not only inconveniencing but also very costly. In fact, there are many situations when a booking mistake will make you fail to access facilities and perks that are rightfully yours and also situations where you end up paying more than you should actually do.

Some people book a hotel room many months in advance and by the time they travel a lot could have happened. While rates will usually rise, there are times when the rates actually fall. If you fail to check the hotel’s site regularly, you’ll fail to take advantage of the decreased rates. By keeping yourself informed of what is really going on, you’ll be able to re-book your room at the lower rate.

When you travel with your spouse and child, it is easy to assume that a room that is meant for two people will also accommodate your child. While some hotels allow this, it is not always the case. However young your child might be, there are hotels that strictly do not admit children and if this info is not provided on a site, you had better confirm it before booking.

Water Damage in my Hotel Room

Before I get to this weeks tip I wanted to share my exciting stay in Spokane Wa last week.  I had checked in to the room around 5PM and thought it would be a good idea to take a long hot bath before heading to dinner.  Interrupted by a phone call, I totally forgot about the running bath.  Having to run down and talk with my associate in the lounge about an emergency issue, then deciding we should go have dinner and diagnose the problem caused one hell of a mess.  By the time I returned to my room the water was flooded into the carpet leading out into the hallway.  In a state of panic just imagining what the hotel was going to charge me for the clean up I called a local cleaning company.  They came over within the hour and had everything cleaned up just as fast.  Saved my butt.  I want to thank the awesome Spokane Carpet Cleaning Company for coming to my rescue – I owe you one!!

How to Save On Hotel Accommodation
Whenever you are travelling to a new destination, hotel accommodation could be your biggest bill. With careful planning however, you could stay in a comfortable hotel and still make massive savings. In fact, if you conducted some good research, you need not compromise your comfort or safety especially if you are visiting a new country or a city you are not very familiar with.
Make use of coupons
Coupons offer discounts and whenever you fail to use them you are actually failing to make use of a saving that is readily available. On some sites, you can easily see the coupon codes you need to use but sometimes you might have to do some searching.
Book hotel room and flight together
Whether you book directly or through an agency, you always stand to gain if you book the hotel and flight together. In fact bundle booking could save you money on both the hotel and the flight.
Find out the loyalty program that your hotel has
If you are a frequent traveler, you stand to benefit from any loyalty program that your hotel runs so long as you stick to the same hotel. If you are staying in a hotel that has branches in many cities or countries, the loyalty program will work for you even if it is your first time in a hotel in a new location. Some loyalty programs are actually very good and could even include some free nights. You can access loyalty programs directly from the hotels or from some booking sites.
Refer people
Hotels love it when you create business for them by referring your family and friends to them. The rewards for referrals vary but will usually earn you bonus points and sometimes even cash.
Find out where prices could be falling
If you just wish to get away from home and have not yet decided on a specific destination, you could make massive savings by heading to a destination where hotel prices are low. Prices fluctuate quite substantially depending on the season and there are many sites where you can obtain this info.
Find out if an association you belong to makes you qualify for a discount
Should you be a member of an association (such as the American Bar Association) it is possible that your membership makes you qualify for special discounts when you book in certain hotels. Discounts are sometimes quite high and you might end up saving as much as 30%.

My Dream Art Gallery

I have always been fascinated with arts ever since I was a kid. Back when I was five, I started sketching and painting using watercolors and color pencils. My mom always knew that I have the potential of being an artist someday. Luckily, I was able to meet someone in high school who shares the same enthusiasm. I met Doreen in art class when I was in Junior high. I’ve always admired her great skills in painting across different mediums and we have been best friends ever since then. We would go bonding over the weekends at the park or anywhere just to bring a piece of canvass into life. And I’d get inspired by our finished works.

Art Gallery

My love for art never waned even when I got married. That’s why, I never stopped cultivating my passion for fine arts, even if I get a little bit too busy doing mommy duties and working for a fulltime job at the same time. I still paint whenever I can. Someday I would be able to build my ultimate dream gallery. Which explains why, I always make it a point to save up every little bit of money that I have left from my budget to build my dream art gallery slowly.
Several years of saving finally paid off. I was able to set up my very own art gallery near my own neighborhood. It was a small shop, but at least it’s enough to display my beautiful works of art. I had a fairly successful art gallery launch. There were a few bunch of people during the launch and it was a good start. Most of my friends were able to spread the word about my event.

During the launch, Doreen admired how far I’ve gone in my craft. She even congratulated me for making it this far in achieving my dream. Doreen gave me an eye opener that day, and told me that my masterpiece and fine artworks should reach across many audiences, not just in Spokane but all over the United States.  And so, I mentioned to her that I am currently making a blog about my art. Doreen told me that while having a personal blog about my artworks is a great idea, my potentials could be known further to many more audiences if I could get a beautiful website that would showcase my skills and artwork. Then again, why not give it a good shot? I could get lucky.
And so the next day, Doreen set me up to meet with a web designer in Spokane that she has ever worked with in the past. As soon as we all sat down, the web guy asked me how I want to dress up my website. They also asked me about my goals and what I hope to achieve with my site. I expressed my need to showcase my artworks to many clients and gain more income from it. Aside from that, I also want to increase my brand awareness and reputation as an established artist in Spokane. The web guy told me that they can make it possible within a couple of months.
And so, fast forward after a couple of months later, I met up with the same web designers and what stumbled right before my eyes captivated me. They showed me their finest masterpiece, their finished work of art: a sophisticated looking one that is fit for an art aficionado like me. One of the sections of my site contained my personal blogs as well as some links to my Social Media Sites. When I tried viewing it on my phone and on my iPad, my website displayed smoothly. It was as fluid as water. Now I have the upper hand and I’m pretty sure that a few months from now, I will have my own steady base of fans and followers. I can’t wait to have a bigger art gallery launch in the next few months to come. A big thanks to the designers at Spokane Website Design.

The Biggest Benefits of Online Personal Training

I was traveling through Orlando last week and met a nice young man who does Personal Training.  I loved the way his business was set up and asked him for more information.  He shared the following with me.

Working with an online personal trainer is supposed to give you professional advice and the opportunity to work out whenever you deem appropriate. Is this option too good to be true? Many busy people have already explored the possibility of working with a personal trainer in the online realm. Depending on the experience and the reputation of the trainer, it’s possible to experience a vast range of important benefits.

If you’re about to try online personal training for the very first time, you’re probably wondering whether it’s worth it. Assessing the list of advantages is the best way to determine whether the opportunity is the right one for you.

Convenience
The first and the most obvious benefit is convenience. Online personal training gives you the information that you need to exercise effectively wherever and whenever you deem appropriate.

Depending on the available equipment, you will get personalized suggestions that correspond to your lifestyle and your workout preferences. There’s no need to purchase additional pieces or visit the local gym (if you don’t want to). Through online personal training, you’ll get everything that you need to exercise at home, in the park or anywhere else.

Online personal training is one of the most practical options for busy professionals and people that have a dynamic schedule. It also appeals to people that travel frequently and have to work out at multiple locations.

Professional Experience and Suggestions
Many of the personal trainers that offer online sessions and plans to their clients have years of experience and an excellent reputation. Making the most of the opportunity is all about finding the personal trainer that appeals the most to you.

It may be possible to train with some of the best experts in the field due to location and distance. Through online training opportunities, people from all parts of the world get to benefit from the expertise of the most popular fitness professionals.

Such sessions are also much more cost-efficient than having a workout guided by the respective trainer. If youíre looking for a good combination between professionalism and affordability, online personal training is the right option for you.

Get Results
The workout created by your trainer and delivered via email or another online communication channel is 100 percent personalized. It’s usually based on a preliminary session or a questionnaire that you’ll have to fill out. Thus, a personal trainer will know what your main struggles and your goals are.

Getting a personalized workout (that’s sometimes even accompanied by a meal plan) is the most effective option when it comes to reaching your fitness goal within a reasonable timeframe.

If necessary, your trainer will make adjustments along the way. They’ll keep on tracking your progress to determine if the regime is optimal. You’re not left on your own while working on your fitness level. This is how online personal training makes it possible to get the results that you’re hoping for.

Personal training online gives you individual attention and a lot of freedom when it comes to exercising. At the same time, you’re held accountable and your results are tracked on a regular basis. This is how online personal training brings you the best of both worlds. You can work towards your goal at your own pace but you’ll still get professional assistance to maintain your motivation.

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Final Leg of My Trip

As I’m sitting here in the hotel lobby waiting for my taxi to the airport, I overheard a gentleman talking about his Service Company. He must of been talking to his secretary because he kept using the words “Take a deep breath”. Apparently she has been overwhelmed with the amount of phone calls coming into their business. When he got off he could see the look in my eyes not being able to relate to this problem. Too many customers calling? He explained to me they had hired an SEO company several months ago and now they were adjusting to the overwhelming amount of new calls their website was generating.

This intrigued me pressing further for more information. The gentlemen said they hired an SEO Company in Spokane. They paid the company a monthly fee to work on his website. It had only been three and a half months. When I asked what SEO was he told me to look it up. For anyone wanting to know I found this really cool explanation on wikipedia.

I wrote down the name of the company, Justin Monk SEO based out of Spokane, WA. When I looked for more information I found the company’s Facebook Page. They look like a legit company and also had several other resources to learn about them. My taxi came before I could get anymore information from the gentleman. Does anyone else know much about this sort of service? It seems expensive but I imagine pays for itself with new customers.

After my taxi picked me up, on the way to the airport I saw a Barbecue restaurant named Dickey’s. Having almost two hours before my flight left and only being 10 minutes from the airport, I asked the taxi driver if he would pull in and wait for me. All I have to say is OMG. The food was amazing. I wish we had one in my city. The beef brisket was probably better than my favorite Ribs. Awesome creamed spinach and the coleslaw was very good too. I’ll be going back the next time I’m in town. 
 Needless to say I ate so much it was difficult staying awake during the flight.  Three hours flew by and now I’m in another taxi headed home.  Anyways that was my latest adventure and I’m glad to be home.

Home sweet Home

Tell me about your adventures and share your experiences please!!

How To Choose A Hotel

Five Star Hotels

There аrе mаnу fасtоrѕ that wіll guіdе аnd іnfluеnсе thе final сhоісе оf hotel оr rеѕоrt уоu’ll wіѕh to book fоr your holiday. Wе all hаvе оur рrеfеrrеd wау of bооkіng a hotel – ѕоmе are mоrе еаѕу thаn others.

You can lіtеrаllу ѕреnd hоurѕ аnd even dауѕ lооkіng іn hоtеl directories аnd websites to see pictures and vіdеоѕ оf hоtеl fасіlіtіеѕ аnd thе dеѕсrірtіоnѕ оf thе аmеnіtіеѕ оffеrеd bу еасh. Sоmе аmеnіtіеѕ mау bе essential to уоu. If you’re travelling аlоnе, thе job іѕ easier. But іf уоu’rе trаvеllіng wіth others, kееріng everyone hарру іѕ nоt ѕо оbvіоuѕ.

Regardless of thе proposed mеthоdѕ lіѕtеd bеlоw, оnе fасtоr will be constant tо аll ѕеаrсhеѕ: your budgеt. Thеrе’ѕ no роіnt іn looking at a two-week vасаtіоn in thе Bahamas at a fіvе-ѕtаr аll іnсluѕіvе hоtеl if уоur budgеt is $1500 for 2 people!

METHOD 1 – WHAT MATTERS?

The first mеthоd consists in сrеаtіng a list оf сrіtеrіа thаt wіll іnfluеnсе your dесіѕіоn tо ѕеlесt a hotel. List аll сrіtеrіа, from all people trаvеllіng wіth you, іn nо раrtісulаr order. Onсе this step іѕ dоnе, thеn соmеѕ thе tоugh раrt.

Start organizing the list bу рuttіng the mоѕt іmроrtаnt factors аt the tор of the lіѕt. Then аѕѕіgn a number tо еасh fасtоr. At this ѕtаgе, mаkе ѕurе everyone agrees wіth thе nеw ordered lіѕt. Frоm the list, pick thе mоѕt іmроrtаnt іtеm (your tор priority) аnd ѕtаrt ѕеаrсhіng thе web bаѕеd оn this рrіоrіtу. Yоu have now started tо nаrrоw down thе lіѕt оf роtеntіаl hоtеlѕ. Thеn, uѕіng thе ѕесоnd most іmроrtаnt сrіtеrіоn, nаrrоw dоwn thе list еvеn more. Cоntіnuе in this wау uѕіng thе thіrd mоѕt іmроrtаnt сrіtеrіоn on your lіѕt.

Finally, соntіnuе уоur ѕеаrсh gоіng thrоugh уоur lіѕt of criteria until уоu’rе ѕаtіѕfіеd that уоu’vе fоund the mоѕt ѕuіtаblе accommodations fоr you аnd your trаvеllіng раrtnеrѕ.

METHOD 2 – STARS AND PRICE

Chооѕе a hоtеl wеbѕіtе, then lооk up аll hоtеlѕ available at уоur destination. If the hоtеl lосаtіоn is nоt іmроrtаnt to уоu, ѕіmрlу ѕоrt the hоtеl listing by ѕtаr rаtіng. Gеnеrаllу, thе рrісеѕ are wеll аlіgnеd with the numbеr оf stars, ѕо thе more ѕtаr rаtіng, thе hіghеr thе рrісеѕ. Thіѕ mеthоd allows уоu tо rеѕресt уоur budgеt fairly еаѕіlу.

METHOD 3 – LOCATION

Mоѕt hotel wеbѕіtеѕ have a mар ѕhоwіng whеrе thе hоtеlѕ are lосаtеd. Thіѕ іѕ ԛuіtе handy, аѕ you can ѕее whеrе the hоtеl іѕ in relation to thе mоѕt рорulаr асtіvіtіеѕ. If the wеbѕіtе does nоt рrоvіdе thіѕ орtіоn, ѕеlесt the hotel address аnd uѕе other wеbѕіtе mар services such аѕ Google Mарѕ or Bing Mарѕ tо ѕее thе hоtеl ѕресіfіс lосаtіоn.

It’ѕ a gооd іdеа to dеtеrmіnе fіrѕt іn which area уоu wіѕh tо be. That wау, you wіll nоt lose time lооkіng up hоtеlѕ thаt аrе nowhere сlоѕе to уоur рrеfеrrеd lосаtіоn оr асtіvіtіеѕ. Thе furthеr уоu аrе from thе роіntѕ of іntеrеѕt, the more expensive іt wіll bе for уоu tо get there.

METHOD 4 – I KNOW WHERE TO STAY

If уоu knоw thе nаmе оf thе hotel оr rеѕоrt whеrе you’d lіkе tо ѕtау, уоu саn ѕоrt listings оf hotels аlрhаbеtісаllу or ѕіmрlу type thе hotel nаmе іn thе ѕеаrсh template of thе wеbѕіtе.