Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Ten IPod Applications: A Must For All Travelers

Do you love to travel? Are you an IPod fan? If yes, then this post is for you. IPod is almost a must for all travelers. According to many fellow travelers (including me), an IPod is the best means of entertainment while traveling. You can listen to your favorite music, watch a music video, a movie, and organize your trip and so on. Besides music and movies, your IPod can also be a travel guide for you while traveling. You heard it right, a travel guide. How? Well it’s not a tough job and it’s not expensive at all. All you have to do is, download these really amazing software’s and install in your IPod and make your IPod your travel guide.

Here are the ten IPod applications that are a must have for travelers:

1. Washington Metro Subway: Visiting Washington DC? This application will make your trip to Washington not only hassle free but also budget friendly. Washington Metro Subway offers detail information on Washington DC Subway such as map of Washington subway, location of each station on the map, travel time and so on.
2. ACT Currency: A universal currency converted; with this application you can covert currencies of more than 150countries in the planet.
3. WeatherX: Who wants to get caught in a bad weather while traveling? WeatherX is the answer to all your weather related queries while traveling. This application offers up-to-date and accurate information on hurricanes, Storms, Airport Delays, Heat, Temperature, Forest Fires, Snow, Air Quality and so on.
4. Taxi Magic: Need a cab? Just tap a button, book your cab and have it pick you up at your desired destinations. This application covers over 500 destinations United States of America.
5. MobileFly: Flying somewhere? Check your flight’s status, baggage claim, gate, departure, or arrival information. With this application you will have access to thousands of airlines.
6. Vegas Mobile: A must for everyone planning to Vegas. With Vegas Mobile you will have detailed information on almost every hotel in Las Vegas, list of shows and tours and more.
7. London Travel Guide: Now explore London on your own. London Travel Guide has everything you need to know about London, from attractions to activities, from shopping to dining, nightlife and more.
8. Talking iPhone Translator: Visiting a complete foreign country. This application will help you blend with the locals perfectly. The Talking iPhone Translator provides both text and audio translations in six different languages (English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese and Italian).
9. Road Helper: Based on a user location, with this application you can find emergency or helper services such as hospitals, gas stations, hotels and much more.
10. WorldView: Now traveling without spending a penny is possible, WorldView allows users to access real time webcams across the globe.

Best part is, these applications are dirt cheap and most of them are for free. Go on and make your IPod your traveler guide

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Europe For Sweet Tooth; A Must For All Visiting Europe

Are you a foodie planning to visit Europe? You will amaze at the variety of heavenly, lip smacking dishes and specialty that await you in Europe. Europe has so much to offer from history, art, music and fashion to technology and much much more but what stand out are its culinary delights. Travelers this time when you travel to Europe, do visit all the historic sights, museums and art galleries, shop and party but try to take out some time and treat your taste buds with some of the world most special culinary delights as you visit the various cities and tours of Europe:

Apple Cake in Noordermarket, Amsterdam: Am sure you won’t be visiting Amsterdam for apple cake, if you are traveling to Amsterdam, don’t leave without tasting a slice of Noordermarkt apple cake. Noordermarket is an organic market that opens only on Saturday from 9:00am to 4:00pm and its here where you taste this amazing delight


Chocolate Cake in Salzburg, Austria: Who does not desire for chocolate cakes, but did you ever wonder where it came from? Well, the first chocolate cake was invented here in Salzburg, Austria by famous confectioner Franz Sacher. So if you are in Salzburg, Austria, forget the sightseeing for a while and try one of Salzburg chocolate cakes. Am sure you will love it.

Lokum in Istanbul, Turkey: After you are through visiting all the sights, take a break and head to Ali Muhiddin's shop in EminönĂ¼ and try their Lokum. Why this shop? Well the shop was opened some 250 years back and many consider their Lokum as the best. But if you can’t make it there, worry not, you will Lokum in almost every Confectionery shops.

Well these were the three delights that you must not miss while exploring Europe. If you have a favorite European delight, do share with fellow travelers by posting it as a comment.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

How to Avoid to avoid jet lag

Air travel is a part of our life and it is becoming almost unavoidable. No doubt it is the fastest, the easiest, the most comfortable and the safest way to travel but taking a flight can be a task, right from booking your airline tickets to flying and much more. One of the most common set back of air travel is jet lag, which is caused by sudden change in temperature, shift work, daylight saving time and so on. Here are some tips on how you can avoid jet lag.

• If you are visiting a destination with a different only for a day or a two, brush aside the difference in the time zone and maintain the same schedule as according to the time back home. But if you are visiting for a longer period, start adjusting your schedule in advance, like, adjust the time on your watch to the time at your destination, going to bed and waking up an hour or a two earlier each day.
• Avoid alcoholic beverages on the flight and sleep during the daytime. Take some medicine if you are prone to motion sickness. Get enough sleep right before the date of your flight.
• If your flight reaches, in the morning, afternoon or early evening, head for your hotel and instead of heading straight to the bed, take a shower and go out, visit some of the sights or just explore the city, get some fresh air, then grab an early dinner and try get some sound sleep.
• Bring along some sleeping pill, in case if you can sleep in the new time zone. You may also carry one of those medicines to prevent jet lag. But consult a doctor before purchasing.

Follow these tips, nest time while you are flying to a different time zone. With these tip you will surely reduce the risk of jet lag. Please fell free to share your tips by posting it as a comment. Your tip can help other fellow travelers to enjoy a more comfortable travel!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Online Travel Sites To the Rescue

Even if you are a die hard traveler, you may think twice before going on a vacation at this current economic status. For the more budget conscious travelers, it’s almost impossible. Does that mean that our glorious days of traveling, vacations are over? No, we can still relive those days. It’s not that easy but it’s not impossible.

Am sure many fellow travelers must be using the hundreds of online travel sites out there in the web to book their travel plans. But if you haven’t, I would suggest you better start using these sites such as CheapOair, Expedia, OneTravel, Tripadvisor, Orbitz and so. Online travel sites are a great way to save while traveling. But if you are not careful, you could land yourself in serious mess. So here are some tips to help you get that best travel plan yet excluding the hazards while booking your travel deals on online travel sites.

• Hook up with a well known, reputed online travel site, which offers secure booking page. Check out the site terms and conditions; read the cancellation policy and browse the FAQ section, if you have any doubts.

• Booking in advance is undeniably the best way to get the cheapest deal, but this does not mean that you have to book months in advance. The best time to book is 21 days before the day of your journey. Incase if you could not, book 7 to 8 days ahead of your travel dates.

• Never end your quest by just visiting one site. Do a research on multiple-sites. If you don’t know the address of such travel sites, use search engines such as Google, yahoo search and so on.

• Sign up for fare alerts like Fares newsletters and RSS fares that the many travel sites offers. Most of the online travel sites allow visitors to sign up free for fare alerts, by which one can get all the latest updates of airfares, hotel deals and so on of a destination through emails.

• Always inquire about extra-charges or any hidden cost before finalizing your deal. Do not give up the PIN number of your credit card besides the three-digit security number on the back of your credit card.

• Once you complete the process of booking, you should receive an email confirming all the details, print it and keep it safe and handy as you will need it while check in at the airport or at the car rental office, if you have booked a rental car.

Next time while buying your travel plans online, follow these simple tips. If you have any tip or experience, feel free to share by posting it as a comment.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Swapping your Home? Here are some Tips

Planning to take a vacation but worried about all those hotel and restaurant bills. Why don’t you swap your home? Started in Europe, home swapping is a fast spreading trend, allowing vacationers to enjoy the comfort of a home while away from home. Home swapping has myriads of advantages, right from, you get to save on your accommodations; you experience local cultures and traditions at its best, and so on. Just as its advantages, home swapping also has its own downfall, but we can avoid such pitfalls by planning wisely. Here are some tips and tricks that you need to know before and while you swap your home.

1. The most important of all is, don’t rush. Give plenty of time to find the best suitable swap partner. Use a well known established home swapping agency. Before you agree to swap your home, spend time corresponding with your swap partner, this will help you feel more comfortable in entrusting your home to your partner.
2. Ask your partner to leave instructions for using the home appliances such as, washing machine, TV, music system, dryer, and so on. Be extra sure to inquire where the keys will be and nearest food store.
3. If you are traveling with a baby or a toddler, try you best to sway your home with someone who has children of similar age. Ask your swap partner whether they have a regular babysitter or where you can arrange one.
4. Don’t forget to get a list of emergency numbers from your partner. Inquire about nearby attractions, dining areas, neighborhood parks and so on.
5. If your swap includes cars, be sure to check whether your car insurance policy will allow you to add a named driver. If not, then get a policy from a company which understands your needs.
6. Before you depart from your home, be sure that your home is clean and tidy; leave instructions on how to operate your home appliances.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Stay Safe in A foreign Taxi!

Taxi related crimes and scams are very low compared to other travel related disasters. But we should always follow common precautions especially when traveling to a foreign country. A little carelessness could even spoil your entire vacation like giving away all your valuables just because you manage to board a fake cab. But we can avoid such misfortune by following some common precautions like:

1. No matter where you are traveling, taxi stands can be found outside the airport, bus stations, railway stations, markets or so on and one should always hire cabs only from these stands. As in almost all the countries only legitimate taxis are allowed to stop at these taxi stands.

2. Before boarding a cab always check the taxi company's phone number on the doors and on the trunk of the cab. An authorized company will always advertise their company’s phone number. But, this can be ignored in some cases, like in small towns.

3. Knowing even the slightest of local language always pays off.

4. Collect some general information regarding the direction, about the neighborhood and the cost of the fare, where you are heading at your hotel or ask some friends.

5. Always negotiate and fix the fare before boarding a cab.

6. Sharing a cab with a stranger may allow you to save some bucks, but it is always better spending some extra bucks instead of getting clean robbed.

7. Finally, know who to call in emergencies.

Normally you will find foreign taxis quite safe, but always follow these tips while using taxis in foreign countries as it is always better to be on the safer side.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Traveling to a Foreign Country? Here Are Some Smart Tips

Who does not love to travel to new places, see new things and experience various cultures and traditions? But is traveling to foreign countries safe? Of course it’s very safe to travel to almost anywhere, be it Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, Australia, North, South or Central America, unless that country is in the middle of a war. But while visiting a foreign country, especially a complete foreign country, one should be always on the look out. Here are some tips and tricks on how to enjoy a hassle-free vacation in a foreign.

• The most important of all is; do a research of that destination you will be visiting, in advance. Spend some time surfing the net, check out the endless of online travel sites; visit the country official tourist site. Collect information about the current political situation, best time to visit, tips on accommodations, things and places to avoid, medical related tips, your embassy phone number, emergency numbers and so on.

• Knowing the local customs and traditions is very important, especially while traveling to Middle-East, Africa and some parts of Asia. This includes like how you should dress, especially for ladies, public display of affection (PDA), hand gesture and so on.

• No matter, where you are heading, always try your best to dress like the locals. Leave all your blings at home, try to avoid white sneakers, especially white, and fanny pack. Don’t show off that ultra-chic digital camera or any electronic gadgets like cell phones, iPods in the public.

• As any wise traveler would do, do not keep all your important documents like credit cards, cash, ID cards, and passport in the same place. Get at least three photocopy all your important documents. Never give your passport to the hotel clerks, but in some countries like Italy, you need to surrender your passport to the hotel clerk. In this case, while submitting demand the hotel to issue some sort of written proof that the passport is with the hotel.

• Always carry your bags, handbags or suitcase on the side of the body not facing the traffic. Always be on alert while using public transportations like bus or trains. Avoid places which are not well-lighted. Never exchange your currency with illegal agents.

You need not worry about a thing, even if you are traveling to a complete foreign country. All you have to do is plan wisely and follow common pre-cautions. Head out to the streets of the world, explore and experience the world, life loves to be ridden to the fullest. Feel free to share your tips and experiences by posting it as a comment.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Next Time Make Your Business Trip Hassle Free

Some travel for business, some for leisure, while some travel just for the sake of travel, no matter what, travel is an unavoidable part of life. With limited budget and time, occasional flight delays or even lost luggage, business travel may not be the most pleasant things to do. Here are some tips to make business travel smoother.

* Booking in advance is always encouraged. Besides, print out your flight confirmation and keep it in handy just in case. Do not book the last flight.
* Try to reach the airport well in advance. Grab a bite before your flight. Drinking alcohol on the plane is highly discouraged unless you are hitting the sack.
* If this is an over-night flight, try to sleep as much as you can. Put a blind-fold and blanket over your head, while sleeping, this way you can prevent dry throat, plus no one will disturb you.
* Decide on what you will be wearing and pack as light as you can. A travel bag with enough space to hold a change of clothes, laptop, charger, phone, pen, paper is very ideal for business travelers. Never put your laptop or any important documents in your hold luggage.
* Do carry along some extra USB memory sticks (also known as pen drives). A pen and papers are a must, just incase if your lap top battery wears down or face any problems.

Traveling is a very enjoyable experience, even if it’s a business trip, if you spend some time planning. Please feel free to share your tips and idea by posting it as a comment.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Isn’t skiing an exciting idea?

After a long eight months, winter is here at last! So what are your plans for this winter, besides partying, wrapping and unwrapping gifts? Well if you haven’t planned anything yet, why don’t you go skiing? Though some consider skiing trips as for couples and adventure enthuasists, but seriously it’s for everyone. Family can have tons of fun, if you are single you have maximum chances of meeting someone special, party animals will find many nightspots in and around skiing areas. So this winter if you are looking forward for a fun filled, romantic and adventurous winter getaway, I would suggest a ski trip.
Isn’t skiing an exciting idea—then why don’t you pack your bags and head to a ski area and have a blast this winter. Here are some of the coolest and hippest ski destination in North America that won’t mind checking it out.

• Grand Targhee, Wyoming
• Loveland, Colorado
• Bridger Bowl, Montana
• Kirkwood Mountain Resort, California
• Mount Baker, Washington
• Stowe Mountain Resort, Vermont
• Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico
• Snowmass Mountain, Colorado
• Alta, Utah
• Lake Louise Mountain Resort, Alberta, Canada

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

5 Destinations Scuba Divers Would Die to Visit

Calling all adventure lovers? Does exploring new places’, doing things you have never done and pushing your self to the limit excites you? If yes, then take a trip to some of the world’s most exotic, spell binding and breath taking scuba diving destinations in the world. Scuba without a doubt a doubt is one of the best forms of adventure and not much can beat the thrill, the adventure and the excitement of scuba diving.
Well if you are an adventure enthusiast and looking for a place where you can quench your thirst for action and adventure, here is a list of some of the best scuba diving destinations in the world.

Cozumel Island, Mexico: A romantic island situated in the Caribbean Sea, opposite the Playa del Carmen, Cozumel Island is a paradise for scuba divers. Besides scuba diving, in Cozumel Island you will also enjoy extra bonus such as charter fishing, wind-surfing, kite-surfing, sailing and much more.

Turneffe Island, Belize: Calm, romantic and laid back yet full of action and adventure, Turneffe Island without a doubt is a paradise for water-sports enthusaists. When it comes to scuba diving, this island is second to none.

Heron Island, Australia: A coral cay nested near the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern Great Barrier Reef, Heron Island is a seductress known for luring adventure seeker from across the globe. If you are a scuba diving buffs, let Heron Island cast her spell upon you. You will surely enjoy every bit of it.

Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos: Among one of the best scuba diving destinations in the world, Grand Turk is a must for all scuba diving buffs. Blessed with a colorful marine life, a trip to this enchanting island will sweep you off your feet.

Rocktail Bay, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa: Last but not least, Rocktail Bay situated in Northern Natal has always been a favorite among divers. Known for its diverse marine life, scuba diving in the warm waters of Rocktail Bay is an experience of a lifetime.

Adventure enthusiasts, pack your bags and head to any of these destinations and have a blast. Please feel free to share your diving experiences, your favorite diving spot or tips with other fellow travelers by posting it as a comment.