Traveling in Europe is a lot different from life in America. I don’t know how many people I’ve met who expect things to be just like “back home,” only to be shocked at how different things are.
Yahoo Travel recently published a list of the biggest mistakes you can make traveling in Europe. I used to live and work in Italy, in a previous job, so I’ve seen people do all 20 things on Yahoo’s list.
If you want to stand out and be tagged as an American while you’re in Europe, by all means, try a couple of these.
Dress like an American everywhere you go. Don’t do any research ahead of time into what kind of dress is required — long pants or head coverings — when visiting certain cathedrals, or try to fit in, even just a little. Your tour guide (or an aspiring pickpocket) needs to be able to pick you out in a crowd, doesn’t he?
You know that old adage, you get what you pay for? A recent study done by Travelmath proves, not always. The study of three-star, four-star, and five-star hotels for cleanliness uncovered disturbing amounts of bacteria in these establishments.
Travelmath “tested for the presence of various types of bacteria (including bacilli and cocci), yeast, and gram-positive rods (bacteria that cause various ailments, such as skin infections and pneumonia) and gram-negative rods (bacteria that cause respiratory and other infections).” They tested four common, high-touch surfaces: television remote controls, bathroom counters, desks, and phones. Surprisingly, four- and five-star hotels were found to be dirtier than their three-star counterparts.
“That was definitely kind of a surprise for us, because the five-star hotels are known for those extra amenities, the extra service, the extra luxury,” Cristina Lachowyn, outreach manager on behalf of Travelmath, said in a recent Yahoo Travel article.
As you anticipate your next hotel stay, here are some surfaces to avoid or wipe down with disinfectant wipes. (Stick a few wipes in a resealable plastic bag and pack it in your luggage.)
You’ve scrimped and saved, you’ve arranged time off work, you’ve packed carefully. You’re on vacation to make memories and preserve those memories for posterity. So, can we talk just a little bit about some photo faux-pas (a faux-to pas, one might say) to avoid while documenting your travel this summer, especially if you’re heading overseas?
A recent article on Smarter Travel reminds us that there’s an art and an etiquette to taking photos on vacation. Some of these photo faux-pas are just personal preferences, I’m sure, but some of them are sound advice we should all follow.
For starters, unless the food is something extremely exotic, don’t take photos of your meals to show to your friends and family upon your return. Food is food all over the world. We all know what it looks like. And in some restaurants, the chefs don’t want you taking photos of the meal anyway, since most people are not good photographers, and they don’t want their food portrayed in an unflattering way. Besides, the people you ate those meals with are far more interesting. Take their photos instead.
Technology is changing all aspects of our lives, from how we communicate to how we work to how we watch TV. Even our travel is benefitting from new technological advances.
In fact, technological and engineering advances top the list of coming travel-related improvements. DestinationTips.com recently published 15 new travel advances we can expect to see, and we picked out a few of our favorites.
If you have a smartphone, you’ll be especially jazzed by what you can do with that ever-expanding, multi-tasking device.
Hilton and Marriott are in the process of updating the mechanisms that lock their guest rooms so travelers can unlock the door using their smartphone. By simply downloading an app when you check in, your phone acts as a key, and you have one less thing to keep track of during your visit.
What’s the worst part of the travel experience? Take an informal poll and you’ll find “going through security” to be in the top three, if not number one. Since 9/11, Americans have developed strategies for removing their shoes, unloading their laptops, and shrinking their toiletries to three ounce travel sizes in order to streamline their security screening.
What if you could skip all that rigamarole and stroll through security without removing anything? You can, and The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) wants to tell you how. While many frequent business travelers are familiar with Precheck, TSA is on a campaign to get more travelers to sign up.
The process is relatively simple: you fill out a form online and schedule a brief, in-person interview at the airport where you present the required documentation (a passport, driver’s license, or birth certificate) and are fingerprinted. The $85 fee provides Precheck security clearance for five years.
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Have you ever watched a movie like Roman Holiday, The Talented Mr. Ripley, or The Bicycle Thief, and wondered where they filmed it? The answer is “Italy,” of course. But where?
To showcase her country, Italian singer, Romina Arena, the “Queen of Popera,” is releasing her first book — Where Did They Film That?: Italy — as a way to show movie fans where some of their favorite movies were made, and the must-visit locations in the area, like restaurants, museums, and hotels. The book is set to be released in May 2016.
Travelpro is partnering with Arena to help celebrate her new book with the Where Did They Film That?: Italy sweepstakes. We’re giving away a 2-piece set of Travelpro Platinum Magna 2 bags to the winner — an International Carry-on Spinner and a 29″ Expandable Spinner — with an MSRP value of $1,400.
Yes, it’s a lot of work to go on a vacation. You have to plan your itinerary, find the best airfare, decide where to stay, and perhaps who to travel with. But everything in life requires effort, and we don’t want to see you miss out on a great experience because of the following negative myths:
It’s too expensive
In case you were waiting to win the lottery, the reality is everything costs money. There’s no free lunch, but there certainly are a plethora of free and discounted sites and activities to participate in, no matter where you decide to go. (Look at the activities you do at home — museums, sporting events, festivals.)
And there are ways to take vacations that don’t cost much more than your regular living. For example, if you could drive to a new city 1,000 miles away and stay in an Airbnb apartment, you’re looking at the cost of gas and lodging. You can cook your own food, which you would have to do anyway, and you can just walk around and experience a brand new city for an entire week, and try the inexpensive and discounted activities.
Two Leading Travel Industry Brands Continue Reaching and Educating Digital Customers About the Art & Science of Travel
Travelpro® and Atlantic® Luggage, two of the most iconic luggage brands in today’s highly competitive market, have undertaken a lofty goal – to increase awareness of their brands, products and collections though a synthesis of social media strategies. Using a combination of creative blogs, reviews, promotions, and branding partnerships with films and other media outlets, Travelpro and Atlantic luggage seek to more effectively bring increased awareness and brand loyalty to their customers – frequent business travelers, family travelers and flight professionals.
One successful example of their use of multi-media rich global platforms is the intriguing work done with international travel writer Mark Eveleigh as he used and reviewed the Travelpro® TPro ® Bold™ line during his three-month journey down the Amazon River. This ‘real life’ approach to the brands is shared throughout all of the social media sites – blogs, Facebook – which added another 1,000 followers monthly for Travelpro and 2,024 for Atlantic Luggage since February — Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram, that concentrate less on advertising and more on providing information, advice, sharing ideas and encouraging people to explore the world around them.
Man, did you smell those people on the plane? That was terrible. But we don’t smell like that, do we? Uh, do we?
Yes. Yes, you do. We all get a little odoriferous when we travel. But why does it happen? We take care to practice good hygiene, so how can we be so stinky when we get off a plane or train?
I mean, sure we had that burger in the terminal and we don’t have access to our toothbrushes, but that’s not really why we smell when we travel. Take note of these simple solutions to offending others with your stink while in confined, shared spaces and you’ll have a better trip. (Trust me.)
One step is to make sure you drink plenty of water while you’re traveling, especially if you’re flying. You may not really see the connection, but water makes a big difference. When you’re dehydrated, your breath stinks. The bacteria that builds up from the aforementioned hamburger can be diminished just by drinking water. At the very least, water keeps your mouth flushed and reduces stink breath-causing bacteria.
Ever wonder what all those pockets and packing spaces have been designed for in your suitcase? While frequent travelers have developed a system for making the most of these spaces, those who don’t hit the road as often may struggle finding “a place for everything and everything in its place.”
Let’s start with the exterior pockets. Travelpro Rollaboards typically have two exterior pockets on the lid of the suitcase. The large one allows the traveler to store a light jacket if you’re traveling to or from the cold, and you’ll only need your jacket for one leg of the trip. It also provides handy access to a sweater, a book, a newspaper or magazine, or a tablet. Storing electronics in this pocket is not recommended for checked baggage, as it affords the least amount of protection from possible damage.
The smaller exterior pocket is designed to provide storage for handheld electronics, power cords, and a boarding pass. This is especially helpful if you are traveling light and don’t have a separate purse or bag for such items.