Look what happened now...
Read Part One Here: Travel Fees and How to Avoid Them
It’s been my experience that frequent flier programs are not all that.
Be careful when it comes to using frequent flyer programs, because they sometimes impose fees on your supposed free flights. These could include a fuel charge, airport fees, and redemption charges when you cash in the miles. #Fail
Whats a fuel charge?
Fuel surcharges are another tricky fee to avoid. They are often tacked onto your frequent flyer miles, and to small children who don’t take up a seat. International flights will be the most expensive. It pays to compare costs carefully. The cheap fare you see may not be so cheap after all if the airline imposes fuel surcharges or other hidden fees.
Most of the so called budget airlines will stick you will a $35 and up bag fee (each way) if you want to bring more than just a carry-on bag. As one of my friends points out this is the “Fly Naked” deal. Its cheap airfare if you don’t need more than a backpack, but if you are spending anytime anywhere your gonna need luggage and you will end up paying for that privilege.
So if you plan on a trip longer than a few days, you will be adding a bag and a charge to the ticket price. But pack lightly, and beware overweight baggage fees. Over the limit fees can be exorbitant!
If you are checking a bag, avoid adding even more fees by making sure you don’t over-pack. Weigh your luggage before you leave to avoid any surprises.
Other fees on budget airlines you may be tempted to opt for are priority boarding and seat upgrades.
Personally being 5’9 I usually buy extend leg room, unless it is more than the ticket, (yes, I’ve seen that). But priority boarding, if I have an assigned seat isn't an issue and can add another $10 - $25 per ticket, depending on the airlines. The only downside is you may not be able to put your luggage in the bin over your seat. But is that worth $25 to you?
Personally I’d rather board towards the end, walk to my seat and take off, rather than sit for 10-15 minutes while people push by. But that’s totally up to you.
Car Rental Fees
When renting a car, check to make sure the fee includes everything, with no added extras. Remember that your credit card will offer travel protection for collisions, so you might not need additional insurance. But it is always wise to call your credit card company before your trip to see if you have limited coverage out of state or out of country.
I was picking up a car at Heathrow (London airport) and witnessed an American woman crying over the fact she thought she was covered until her insurance company found the international loop hole and she was on the hook for an extra $10,000USD in damages from the rental company. #TrueStory
Also beware key replacement, alternate drop-off locations, taxes and fuel surcharges can all be tacked on to the final car rental bill. Picking up a car in one state and dropping off in another usually cost me an extra $200USD. #AlsoTrueStory
And there will also be a charge if the gas tank isn't at the level you picked it up at. It is always more affordable to top it off yourself, rather than opting for them to fill it for you.
Next time we will discuss accommodations and the hidden fees of some hotels and vacation rentals. Think those fees are small? I’ve seen hotel parking in New Orleans for an astonishing $45 a day! Along with holiday house fees you might not know about.
Hello Fellow Travelers!
I hope your having a fun week. I’m planning a series of trips and working up a travel budget this month. If your like me, you know its important to budget carefully for your travel, I need to make every dollar count. I would rather spend money staying in Paris, than spending money on hidden hotel fees or disguised rental car charges! So I thought I would write a series of posts on the lessons I have learned about obscure charges and hidden fees.
Booking your flight online can be costly if you make a mistake. As soon as you get the conformation email, check to see that your name is spelled right and your travel dates are correct. If they are not, call the airline immediately. Most of the time when I have had an issue of this sort, they have cheerfully changed the tickets with no extra fees or issues. BUT I also called within 5 minutes. The longer you wait, the more likely you are going to be charged a fee.
If you have to change your flight date the airlines will often charge fees so high they are not much different from the airfare itself. I had this happen last month, I bought a ticket for a work trip and then it was pushed back. We bought the insurance, but there was a “change fee” even with the insurance that made the flight almost the same price. To avoid this look for a website or airline that offers a flexible booking period. They do exist, but you may pay more…but if your unsure of the dates of your trip it might be worth it.
As I said I didn't save anything with the trip insurance on that flight. But I have seen people (my mother for one) buy and use insurance for cruises that have refunded their entire trip when they ended up canceling because they were to ill to board. It might seem like another added expense that you would wish to avoid, but it can save a lot of money in the long run.
Next we will discuss Frequent Flyer Programs.
Catch you later~
So how are things?
I am finishing up a nice weekend off. #WIN
I don’t know about you, but lately, I’ve been coming home from work EXHAUSTED!
I promised myself I would stop complaining about how tired I was from work on here, but I was asked recently how I relaxed after a stressful day. Honestly, in the past I just sucked it up and keep going. I used to tell myself that this was my life and that I had to keep going, people were depending on me. End of story.
But over the past few years, I’ve realized that if I want to continue to kick-ass at work, I need to make my health and well-being a priority. I have to set firm boundaries and build in downtime for myself.
I stared by creating a routine to help me relax when I get home. This gives me time to unwind and de-stress and makes the rest of the evening so much better.
Talking to other women it's the same. Let's face it, it hard to relax after work when you have so much to do at home or if you run a side business, and especially if you have a family. OMG! The work never ends!
I’d get home and think about the 10,000 different projects I wanted to get started on, plus all the normal day-to-day stuff like gardening and laundry that needed to be tended too and then stay busy until I fell into bed, sometime around 11:45.
Relaxing wasn’t something I was totally comfortable with. So if that sounds familiar and you need some help in the relaxing department, I have put together a few easy ways to relax after a long day at work.
Change Out of Your Work Clothes
Begin the minute you walk through the door.
There’s nothing better than getting home from work and changing into a comfy t-shirt and losing the bra! Changing out of my work clothes tells my brain that its time to relax, and that I can enjoy a few hours to myself, without the stress of work weighing on my shoulders.
Turn off Your Phone
I’m on my phone all day long, and if I’m not on my phone, I’m on my computer. I’m answering e-mails, returning voicemails, processing paperwork, so when I get home, my brain needs a break. I’m legit sick of my phone by the time I get home, so I’ve been making an effort to unplug for a couple of hours. I’ll leave my phone in my bedroom for an hour or two and I’ll go out to the family room to do anything other than check my social media. This has helped my sanity tremendously. #BIGWIN
After a long day at work, it’s so great to spend a few minutes meditating. I'm actually a meditating expert, (I teach meditation), and because of that I know that anyone can learn this simple form of relaxation.
Begin by just sitting on the floor for five minutes, and do nothing other than focusing on your breathing. This is also a great time to give thanks for the day and just be still. But if you’re not a fan of meditating or you’re just not ready for it, do some yoga or at the very least, stretch. Chances are, you’ve been sitting on your butt all day long, and your body needs some stretching. Trust me, you’ll feel SO MUCH BETTER! Another great way to unwind is reading.
Grab A Book
It's no secret I am a total bookworm! I love to sit in the garden or my reading nook and just relax with a good book. Even if you can only read for half an hour it will help you relax.
Take A Bubble Bath
I swear, I think my bath tub is my favorite part of my new house. If it wasn’t for the fact that you get all wrinkly after sitting in the tub for a while, I think I’d stay in there for hours at a time. After a super stressful day at work, there’s nothing like slipping into a hot bubble bath. I use two different kinds of soaking baths- eucalyptus/sea salt and lavender- both are amazing for helping me achieve a few minutes of pure relaxation.
Use Essential Oils
Right before bed I turn on my diffuser. I keep it filled with essential oil and not only does it relax me, but it helps me fall asleep quickly. I have one in my bedroom, one in the guest room and a large one in the formal living room. Plus I'm thinking of adding one to my office. I love oils THAT MUCH.
After a long day at work, I love lighting candles. It really sets the tone for the evening and it helps me remember to take it easy. It signals my brain that the rest of the night is for unwinding and a gentler pace.
Unwind with a mug of soothing herbal tea. The feel of your favorite mug in your hand and the wonderful aroma of a soothing herbal blend work together to help you relax. There are so many different blends to try, just make sure you get an organic tea that is pesticide free.
How do you unwind and relax from a stressful day? I'd love to hear your tips - leave me a comment below and let's discuss.
Now I'm off for a long soak with a good book and a warm cuppa!
Catch you later-
Hi there lovely reader,
How are you? Are you as excited about winter travel as I am? Probably or you wouldn't be here. Until I can hop on the next train, plane or boat I'm at home working away to pay for all those upcoming adventures. So being I haven't done one of these "whats in my bag" posts in a long time I thought I would overshare with you today. (I did a What's in "My Shopping Bag" in 2016. If you want to go back down memory lane.)
I actually changed out my trusty black bag for a more "fall vibe" this week. What do you think? It's a vegan leather bag from Vince Camuto I received from FFF. (I think it was in the autumn box, which I don't think I've even reviewed yet? ) Opps!
I really like this vegan leather bag. I find it roomy, without being bulky. One downside is that it doesn't have a snap. A snap would make it perfect.
So how much stuff do you pack into your work bag? I usually have files or notes, depending on what meeting I'm going to or what I'm doing that day. Other than that I try to keep my load to a minimum.
Plus external hard drive, a hair clip, pens, lipstick, lip balm, a mala and a tigers eye bracelet. The jewelry is for when I need to look more put together. They match most of what I wear day-to-day and can dress up my outfit if I suddenly have a meeting that requires me to look more professional. Same goes for the lipstick. The jewelry is from www.Serenityreikiclinic.com as are the small bags. I use them to corral the small items.
So thats currently all that's in my work bag. Half the time I don't even bother with carrying a purse. I just add my wallet and keys to this bag and off I go.
So tell me, what 'must have' essential am I missing? Or what is the one thing you can't live without in your bag? I'd love to here.
One of the greatest challenges for a global wanders is finding community. There are times when I personally crave being alone and everything solitude offers and other times when I want a connection. I find connecting with other people can be difficult because not everyone understands my life.
Finding kindred spirits takes more effort and usually isn’t the person living next door.
The more I travel, the more I learn, the more I find my personal culture changes. Which is great, because part of the reason I wander is to keep growing and learning, but it also makes it difficult to relate to other people.
Do you find this to be true as well? All I can say is thank goodness for the large, online community of other wanders! Now you can find your tribe and stay connected even as you wander further a field.
Last week I missed a memorial service for a good friend. I was across the country and probably could have made a better plan to attend, but I didn’t. I so dislike these services. To me they are not a celebration of persons life, but a heart wrenching reminder of all that was left unsaid and undone. While I understand this is a type of closure some people need, my mourning is a private affair.
I will be attending a personal service with her other friends next year. (We are scattered all over the globe and need time to organize everyones schedule.) No matter how long it has been since we have come together, we will be united by her memory.
Just the act of sharing a meal with former colleagues and co-workers from our mutual past reinforces our personal connection. Stories will be told, memories shared. Hopefully there will be more laughter than tears, but I know both are therapeutic.
But I dislike the fact it takes a funeral to bring us together. How do you build a community while you wander? Do you have these same issues or is it just me? Leave me a comment and let’s discuss it further.
See you at the airport~
How's your weekend going?
The weather is changing fast, winter is almost here. The winds have kicked up and the temps are dropping just in time for the yearly Balloon Fest. This year it will run from October 6-14, 2018. *Hit the link to read more about it.
Turns out Balloon Fest here is a lot like Mardi Gras in NOLA, all the locals leave and let the tourist run wild! One of my native friends told me it's not safe to drive, as all the tourist are looking up watching the balloons and not paying attention to the traffic. She has gone to Vegas for the weekend to escape. #VegasIsAlwaysAGoodIdea
I did manage to get out of bed today and go for a walk. Spotted this lovely morning glory, blooming like no ones business while I was out. The color was so intense and vibrant my silly iPhone did not catch it, but you get the idea. I always marvel at what thrives in the desert.
Although I'm more excited about buying new clothes since I dropped more weight!
Either way it is time to do some closet cleaning and make room for new leggings and fuzzy sweaters. I was looking around yesterday, in two years we have filled this house! It doesn't feel empty anymore. Funny how that happens, isn't it? You grab a few things and then a few more and before you know it, a 5 bedroom house is full!
If you have been following me awhile you know I dislike clutter and too much stuff. I'm not a minimalist, but I also don't like the general disarray that too much stuff can cause. So I may spend this month editing both my summer and winter wardrobe and boxing up stuff to donate.
Meanwhile I went outside to pick the last of the tomatoes and this happened....
Hope you have an amazing week~
And the blogging challenge continues..
This is an easier post for me than some of the other topics in this daily blogging challenge. I'm very fortunate to have so much good in my life right now. It hasn't always been this way, but I do feel very blessed right now.
Ten things that make me happy and/or I'm grateful for:
#1 is of course my son.
#6 FOOD! All the wonderful fruits and veggies!
I'm so happy we get to eat healthy food everyday.
#7 My friends! They are so cool, so supportive and are so crazy! They make me happy everyday.
I feel so blessed!
See you tomorrow for the next post in the blogging challenge!
Welcome to my travel blog, my healthy Vegan lifestyle blog and my life! It's a lot, but it's my passions and I just love to write about it. Here I share tips, stories and photos from my adventures and life. This is the place where people can find daily inspiration to travel and motivation to live healthier lives and laugh a bit too!
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