Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tips for Traveling with your Laptop

The laptop has become so much of our lives, we can hardly think of going anywhere with out it. Elaine Sanders has some great advice on going through check in with your laptop.

Johnny Ray

Faster Check-in For Travel with "Checkpoint Friendly" Laptop Bags

Author: Elaine Sanders

If you have ever wanted to travel to Greece, Hawaii, Australia or even Argentina, now is the time. Even the travel experts can’t tell you the last time that they saw so many deals for summer travel. If there is one good thing coming out of the recession, it is the “recession buster” deals in the travel world. While for some people laptop and vacation don’t belong in the same sentence, more people are traveling with their laptop with the proliferation of micro-mini laptops and the virtual office. For those road warriors, it is helpful to know what checkpoint friendly laptop bags are available so they can breeze through security.

TSA (the Travel Security Administration) has some relatively simple guidelines. Your laptop needs to lay flat on the X-ray belt. No zippers or metal objects can be underneath or on top of the laptop section, and there can be no pockets in the laptop section. There can be nothing else in the laptop section other than the laptop. The whole idea is that the TSA rep needs to be able to easily see your laptop as it goes through the X-ray.

If you really want to keep it simple for yourself, just choose a laptop sleeve or bag that is already identified as checkpoint friendly. Mobile Edge has created its "Scan Fast" series of laptop bags, that includes a checkpoint friendly laptop backpack and several briefcases that fold open and allow you to keep the laptop inside. Brenthaven’s stylis x-ray friendly laptop case opens up like a butterfly, allowing for a quick move through security. This bag comes in sizes for both a 15.4” and a 17” laptop, so most any sized laptop will work with either of the two.

Maybe you have a bag that you already love to take on trips. If that is a case, a choice of a checkpoint friendly laptop sleeve makes sense. Same guidelines apply to sleeves as to laptop bags, so no zippers or objects can cover the laptop in the x-ray. Casauri has taken their popular sun stripe and deco blocks patterns and made laptop sleeves that will make security a breeze and yet allow you to have a colorful choice for laptops ranging from 8.9” through 15.4”. For a little more sedate look, Greensmart’s laptop sleeve in storm blue or black is good for males or females, and has the added benefit of being eco-friendly by being made of recycled plastic bottles.

About the Author:

Elaine Sanders, together with Raffaella Camera, co-founded Kolobags.com, the best place online to buy designer laptop bags, stylish laptop totes, laptop backpacks, ipod cases, and other technology fashion accessories from today's leading designers.

Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - Faster Check-in For Travel with "Checkpoint Friendly" Laptop Bags

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Road trip advice for the day trip

Road Trip check list for the day trip
Life is a journey and as such needs to be enjoyed. It’s not simply arriving but making the trip. Sometimes the sights along the way can be much more interesting than the final destination. Yes, we’re talking about a road trip. These, of course, can be day trips or month long trips. In any case, they have to be planned for accordingly.
Today, we’ll concentrate on the day trip. This can be a short one or two hour trip to a full day of driving. But, the great part is able to spend the night in your own bed. The trip naturally needs to be planned by all agreeing to it. It helps if all have the same joys in making such a trip. Some people like many stops and others like to push it all of the way.
To increase the trip, Google can be your best friend; that is, next to a GPS in your car. Having wireless internet connections is definitely a bonus. Granted you might not want to hit every attraction, but some of the stops can lead to some interesting surprises. Do not be scared to take the side road, the road less traveled so to speak.
While you have the trip planned, don’t stay so rigid in it that you miss opportunities. If you eagerly search for interesting places, you’ll often find them. The anticipation adds so much to the adventure. It is so true that what you look for, you often find.
Don’t forget the camera. Now that you found a great side adventure, make memories that you want to keep. You may want to pass this way again, but maybe not. Take the photos, it is worth the time.
We all get hungry and it is tempting to take food along with you. However, it also robs you the potential to experience local foods. There are always interesting and highly unusual places to eat. Ask the owners or managers what the restaurant is famous for and what are their specials? Again, bring the camera.
When exploring, be prepared to get lost, even with GPS. That is truly the only way to ever see the back roads. But, be thankful that you can find your way out. You have to love GPS. And know when to call it a day. It is great to hit the home button and know what time you can make it home.
And, of course, road music—you have to bring the right music with you. Sometimes you want background music and sometimes you want music that can get your heart pumping. You have to have choices. As far as local stations go, try them if you wish, but be prepared to have your own.
The most important reminder is to make the trips. There is so much around you, no matter where you live that remains unexplored. Make a road trip and look at it through a new set of eyes, I think you will be glad you did.
Johnny Ray
www.sirjohn.org/bloglist

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Saturday, May 23, 2009

Planning a beach vacation? Need to Budget?

Planning tips for a vacation to the beach



From living close to the beach, it is amazing how many people spend far more than they need to, simply because of bad planning. This is an article I found that I think helps in making your trip much more afforadable and pleasant.

Johnny Ray



Tips for planning a budget beach vacation

Author: Jenn Lim

A beach vacation need not be an expensive affair. As a matter of fact, with careful planning, it is possible to have an enjoyable beach holiday on a tight budget for yourself and your family.

There are advantages to planning for your beach holiday and the most prominent advantage is the anticipation and the discipline of working towards an objective, making saving for your holiday worthwhile. Planning for your beach holiday also helps reduce hidden costs and any unwanted surprises. Here are some tips to help you plan for your beach vacation:

  1. Decide on a budget. Plan your holiday budget based on the number of people travelling, the airfare, accommodations, foods and possible beach activities.
  2. Look into several ways to help with the holiday budget. If you are planning a family holiday, why not get the children to contribute to the holiday by suggesting a saving venture or doing garage sale to raise more funds for the holiday.
  3. You do not have to break the bank to have an enjoyable holiday. Travel companies out there are always vying for your custom and will do whatever to try to get your attention. Look out for special offers like free night stay, free child places and even free meals in the holiday package.
  4. The internet is also a great place to get bargain deals for your beach holiday. You can search for special offers, last minute deals and make price comparison easily online.
  5. Plan early if possible for your beach holiday. Planning early allow you to source for the best holiday deals especially if you plan to travel during school breaks. Prices for airfare and accommodation are usually lower when you book more than 3 months in advance.
  6. If you intend to book holiday chalet for your stay, remember to check if the chalet provider charge a fee for towels and bed spread. If they do and if it is possible, you can make additional savings by bringing your own.
  7. Look out for all inclusive accommodation. It is a great way to save money as food and drinks are included in the price of your room. All-inclusive holidays are one of the best types of holiday to book because you don’t have to worry about budgeting for anything except for excursions, admission fees, and souvenirs.
  8. If you intend to fly to your beach holiday destination, ask the hotel or resort you will be staying with if they provide free transfer to and from the airport.

The most important factor of holiday is Fun. With careful planning, you can still have fun in your beach holiday without having to spend a lot of money.

About the Author:

Find more travel tips and travel reviews at Holiday Essentials.
Jennifer Lim writes travel related topics and travel reviews. She search through many travel sites and travel operators to bring together a selection of reviews.

Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - Tips for planning a budget beach vacation

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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Travel Agencies - The Advantages of Creating a Working Arrangement

Why use a travel agency?



In the age of computers and the internet it appears that many people think they can make all of their arrangements on their on. While in some cases that may be true, it is still important to consider the advantages that you can gain by working with a travel agency. I think Jennifer Bailey has some great insight into this that I wanted to share with everyone.



Advantages of Working with Travel Agencies

Author: Jennifer Bailey

Many people opt for planning a vacation on their own when it comes time to book their much anticipated getaway. This will mean looking on your own for the best travel rates for airfare, trains, cruises, hotels options, purchasing tickets for special events, car rentals and any other details involved in putting together a fun-filled vacation. Instead of openly enduring the hassles and stress of planning your own vacation, put all the work into the hands of a competent travel agent and save yourself a lot of time, headaches, and money.

There are many good reasons to work with a travel agency when planning a family vacation, or even a quiet getaway for you and someone special. Here are just a few of the benefits that can be yours in exchange for a little time with an agent.

Information

One of the first things you should understand about travel agencies is they have information a wide variety of excursion opportunities. It is not just the great packages to major cities and well-known vacation spots that they can tap into for your benefit. They can also provide information about less trendy vacation locations that are not already overrun with tourists. Depending on why you want to get away, this can be a very important factor. At the very least, using a travel agent will allow you to consider destinations that you would probably never have discovered on your own.

Reduced Costs

There is also the matter of cost. Many people have the mistaken idea that using a travel agent is expensive. In many cases, the opposite is true. Travel agencies know where the best deals are found at any time during the year. The nature of their business allows them to establish a rapport with hotel chains, airlines, and other services relevant to constructing vacation plans that makes it possible for them to negotiate rates you would never be able to manage on your own. Even if you have the time to handle all the myriad details associated with planning a vacation, the chances of obtaining the same rates for air or train travel, hotel accommodations, and other amenities, is highly unlikely.

Saving Time

Time is sometimes a factor in planning a vacation. Utilizing the expertise and resources of travel agencies, certain tasks which are time consuming can be outsourced to your travel agent. All the necessary information is already at their fingertips. There is no need to make multiple telephone calls or spend hour’s online setting up each aspect of the trip. With a travel agency, you simply sit down with an agent, discuss what you have in mind, and then let the planning begin.

Your agent can show you more options in five minutes than you could probably come across yourself in five hours. If you have firm ideas of what you want and where you want to go, there is a good chance everything can be arranged, including extras, in less than a half hour. That

leaves you plenty of extra time to buy new clothes for the trip!

When in Rome

Travel agents can also make you aware of any cultural aspects associated with your destination. Knowing what type of dress is appropriate, how to interact respectfully with the hotel staff as well as others living in the area, and what to expect in the way of local cuisine, can save you a lot of time, frustration, and embarrassment. One good example is the traditional “Okay” sign that is created using the thumb and index finger. While that gesture is considered acceptable in countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom, it is considered a grave insult in other places around the world. Knowing what is and is not acceptable in the way of gestures and speech will help you avoid what could be a highly awkward situation.

Support Network

Another key advantage of using a travel agency is that you always have some type of support network should you hit an unanticipated snag with any part of the vacation plans. The agency can intervene if inclement weather causes you to miss a flight connection by working with the airline to get you on the way as soon as possible while also calling ahead to the hotel and letting them know your arrival is delayed. Many travel agencies also can provide assistance during the trip with last minute details, such as obtaining tickets for a local event or arranging for a rental car once you arrive at the hotel.

Due to the variety of benefits associated with using a travel agent, there is really no reason to go to the trouble and expense of making arrangements on your own. Allowing an agent to handle all the details for you makes it much easier for you to concentrate on enjoying the trip, while saving money at the same time. In the event you need help with anything, the travel agent is only a phone call or an email away.

About the Author:

Jennifer Bailey is a freelance writer who writes about travel and leisure, often focusing on a particular aspect of vacationing such as working with travel agents.

Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - Advantages of Working with Travel Agencies

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Johnny Ray gives tips on recovering lost luggage

Johnny Ray’s Thoughts on Recovering Your Lost Luggage

I know I’m not the first one to have luggage head in the opposite direction of where I need it to be delivered. The frustration of not ever knowing if it will be returned can really ruin your day. With all of the piece of luggage out there that disappear, the chances of having it recovered depend sometimes on one fact—the ability to identify it.

Having the outside tag can be helpful, but it also gives away your location to anyone glancing at it. This cannot be too good of a thing. The last thing you want to do is advertise is that you are away from home. However, it is always good to be able to tell the lost and found guy a way identify your luggage from all of the rest out there. This is a time for you to be creative and let your imagination come into play.

The company will usually open the luggage to see if there is a way to identify its owner. This is the best place to leave your card and information on how to locate you. If you are making a trip, leave information on how to contact you.

Another request often made is to identify what is located inside. This is often when we all go brain dead. It helps to have a mental note of what you were carrying with you. On the items inside, it can also be great to have names attached to them. This might appear to be a problem you think you will never face, but the old saying an ounce of prevention goes a long way is definitely true.

And last is the issue of insurance. If you have extended insurance you have the added feeling that they have more at stake to find your luggage. And this may be a small price to pay to receive your luggage back.
Johnny Ray

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Johnny Ray's Announcement of new blog on traveling

It makes me very happy to start this new blog and share with my many friends that have the same zest for travel I share. I hope to have a guest blogger here from the travel industry at various times as well as the results of my own research. I hope everyone enjoys this new site. Let me know what you think.

Johnny Ray

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