Tag Archives: travel

Spring Break Travel Tips

Filed under: College Life, Tips, Travel & Abroad - Angelina
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Sylwia Baran Blogger Biography

 

 

 

Who’s ready for Spring Break?! I know I am. It is right about this time that it feels as though the semester has been dragging on and on for so long that a break is much needed. For the lucky ones who will be honoring the long-time tradition of traveling to a gorgeous beach, here are some tips for your travels.

1. Spill-Proofing Liquids

Packing lotions, sunblock, perfume, shampoo? These are the things that can break in your suitcase and cause a big mess. On my last vacation, my liquid eyeliner cracked and spilled while in my suitcase. Lucky for me, I had followed my own advice and packed all liquid items in separate Ziploc baggies and so all of my clothes were safe. It’s a quick thing to do while you’re packing and it can save you lots of potential trouble. Just make sure you zip them tightly!

Individually Packing Liquids In Plastic Bags Travel

Photo © Cheap O Air

2. The “Just-In-Case” Carry-On

If you’ve ever flown anywhere and discovered that your suitcase has been lost, you know what a nightmare this can be. It can take a few days for the airline to track it and get it back to you so you always want to be prepared for the worst. One thing I always do is pack at least one change of clothes in my carry on, a swimsuit (if traveling to a hot spot) and anything else I may potentially need for the first day. This way, if your other suitcase gets lost, you at least have the essentials you need for a day or two to enjoy your vacation.

college student with carry-on bag for spring break travels

Photo © She Knows

3. Tips for Tipping

When traveling to a different country, especially to all-inclusive resorts, tipping goes a long way. I’m not saying to drop a $20 every time you get a drink at the bar or have a meal at a restaurant, but everyone appreciates being appreciated. A good tip when it comes to tipping is to carry around a few singles with you at all times.

Tipping

Photo © Daily FInance

4. Drink A Lot… Of Water

Let’s be honest, we all know what Spring Breakers (of legal age of course) like to do on their Spring Break. But large amounts of alcohol and a strong hot sun quickly leads to dehydration and a ruined vacation. So remember to drink a big glass of water every once in a while to keep up your energy and to prevent feeling sick.

Drinking Water From Glass

Photo © Worklife & Wellness

5. Plan Ahead

Before you leave for your Spring Break vacation, search for activities you’re interested in near the area, as well as any restaurants you’d like to visit. This way, you have somewhat of an idea as to what you’d like to do once you arrive and so you won’t spend your vacation time trying to figure out what’s where. This saves you both time and money.

Restaurants Near Miami Vacation Google Maps Planning For Spring Break

Photo © Mr. Zonbu

Have a great Spring Break! No matter what you’ll be doing or where you’ll be going, enjoy your time off! And remember to pack the essentials, especially sunblock!

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Avoiding Hostel Horrors

Filed under: Tips, Travel & Abroad - Angelina
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Serena Piper Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

Since traveling to the country of Georgia, I have been learning a lot from my first abroad experience. I recently stayed in my first hostel. I was pretty excited to find such a deal on for one night. The hostel had great reviews so I didn’t expect any problems. Unfortunately, my stay in this particular hostel was a little less than enjoyable. Here are five tips I have for you just in case you’re preparing for a hostel stay since it may be a little bit of a different experience you may be used to:

1. Bring Soap

I thought it was a ‘given’ that the hostel would provide soap in the bathroom or shower like typical places you stay overnight in. Instead, I had to ask for it. Some hostels do not provide towels either so you’re better off bringing your own. Also, don’t walk around barefoot in the bathroom, no matter how clean it may appear.

Bar of Soap

Photo © Care2

2. Bring Earplugs

Whether you get your own private room, or you take a bunk bed in a dormitory, you are going to want earplugs. The lights may go off at a certain time, but that doesn’t mean the people around you will stop chattering. You may also want to consider bringing your own sleep sheet, just in case the hostel doesn’t provide sheets.

College Girl Sleeping With Earplugs And Mask

Photo © Alice Benjamin

3. Don’t Bring Anything Expensive

Before you check out your hostel, it’s a good idea to see if they provide lockers. If you have a private room, you should be fine leaving your stuff. If you stay in a dormitory, be careful. Some hostels are perfectly secure, while it would be best in others to not leave your fancy Canon camera.

Hostel Room

Photo © Table For One

4. Ask The Staff

Feel free to do some research on your own to see where the best restaurants are locally, but don’t forget about the hostel staff. Ninety percent of the time they will have great recommendations not only for restaurants, but sights to see, and things to do.

Hostel Staff Man

Photo © Sakura Hostel

5. Don’t Be Cheap

Just because you’re on a budget, that doesn’t mean you should go for the cheapest hostel around. Price your trip well in advance and plan to pay extra for whatever level of comfort you want. Saving money is not as important as your safety and comfort.

Cheap Dirty Hostel

Photo © Darren Alff

If you have never been in a hostel before, definitely be warned that it is completely different from a hotel. Be prepared to bring anything you may need and to not bring anything too valuable.

If you have any hostel-staying tips, feel free to leave them below!

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Traveling With Homesickness

Filed under: Social Life/Relationships, Tips, Travel & Abroad - Angelina
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Serena Piper Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

I have been in Georgia (the country, not the state) for a while now and I am finding adjusting to be a bit more of a chore than I expected. When I signed up to teach English abroad, all I pictured was living in a cool little town with interesting people, and no problems whatsoever. I could not have underestimated this journey more.

I’m in a small village only a 3 minute cab ride from the city, but the village looks like a completely different world. If I’m not wearing earplugs at night when sleeping, I wake up to the sound of chicks peeping, pigs oinking, roosters crowing, and dogs fighting. Being in this village without anyone I know immediately close by, and living with a family with an English level similar to that of an 8-year-old, has made me really homesick. However, I’ve been getting creative with how to soothe myself with this culture shock, so if you are experiencing homesickness abroad, here are my suggestions:

1. Buy Something Comforting

I’m surprised at the number of similar products Georgia has in their mini-marts. Whenever I’m in town, I make sure to stock up on treats: chocolate, Fanta orange soda or Sprite, and Pringles. Not only will you be satisfying your snack cravings, but you will be eating something familiar, which will help you relax. This applies to other products other than food too, although some may be hard to find in a different location.

Can of Pringles

Photo © Food Junk

2. Don’t “Should” Yourself

Do not think, “I should be feeling happy.” Everyone deals with situations differently. Allow yourself to wallow, cry, be sad, and be alone. It is normal to feel this way. Just don’t sit in it for long periods of time.

Sad College Student Traveling Abroad

Photo © A Sharing Connection

3. Reach Out

Email or call friends and family and tell them how you are feeling. Talk it out to whoever will listen. Advice, comforting words, and a new friend will often come of it. You will feel better just talking to someone you miss as well.

College Student Talking On The Phone To Family Friends

Photo © Confused

4. Distract Yourself

There have been plenty of times where all I want to do is curl up in bed and do nothing all day. Unfortunately, that would not only make the situation worse, it would also mean missing out on cool excursions, such as Georgian wine-tasting at local vineyards. It is actually better to make yourself busy so you forget you are homesick!

Martha's Vineyard Travel

Photo © New York Times

5. Pick Up A New Hobby

Take advantage of the time you have available and learn or brush up on a new language, or pick up that book you’ve always wanted to read, etc. The time will pass anyway, so you might as well take advantage of it by doing something fun and intriguing.

College Girl Reading Book

Photo © MindShift

The best piece of advice I have been given in regards to traveling: do whatever you have to to make yourself comfortable. I take things day by day instead of looking at the long term, and that seems to make all the difference in this experience traveling abroad.

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5 Important Things To Bring Abroad

Filed under: Tips, Travel & Abroad - Angelina
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Serena Piper Blogger Biography
 

 

 

 

 

A few days after I arrived in T’bilisi, Georgia, I became homesick already. For someone who has never traveled out of the country, it is a surreal experience. It has made me wonder if perhaps traveling to England or France would have been easier.  At least I know that I am thankful to have brought with me some things to make this experience more comforting. Here are some things that you should bring with you if you are going abroad anytime soon:

1. Travel Adapter

You can buy these at Target, Best Buy, or any other home goods store. No matter where you get it, just get one. You need this for all of your electronics. The plugs are very different abroad and if you don’t have the adapter, you will have to trek out and buy one, which could cost you extra.

Travel Power Adapter Plug In

Photo © AViiQ

2. Something Personal From Home

Bring your favorite blanket, pillow, or indulgence. Once you are abroad, you will be craving the familiar and anything resembling normal. For me, it’s a pillow my mom bought for me before I left and Dove chocolate.

Fun Square Throw Heart Pillow

Photo © The Creativity Exchange

3. First Aid Kit

This should contain anything from gauze and bandages to Tums and what you would normally take for headaches. Your body is going to take awhile to adjust to the new times, new foods, and new routines. You will want to be prepared.

First Aid Kit

Photo © iVillage

4. Snacks

This will pretty much be a backup and act as comfort food should regular meals not be easily accessible (or if you just get the midnight munchies).

Snack Box

Photo © Fast Track Fundraising

5. Clean Clothes

Pack extra of everything (especially underwear)! This will make you feel clean even if you aren’t. Unless you are staying with family, you never know how often you will be able to do laundry.

Pile of Clean Clothes

Photo © rgbstock

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It helped reading travel articles before I started packing to keep in mind everything I needed to get before the official packing process began. Don’t forget to include practical things too, such as sunscreen or some kind of face lotion, toothbrush, and extra toothpaste, Chapstick, and a book. Internet may not be steadily available wherever you are so having a book will come in handy.

Any extra tips you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments!

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Staying In Touch While Abroad

Filed under: Social Life/Relationships, Tips, Travel & Abroad - Angelina
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Serena Piper Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

Preparing for my trip to the Republic of Georgia has come with its tradeoffs. I had to leave a familiar town, a great part-time job I’ve had for three years, and most importantly, my family and friends. It was difficult saying goodbye to people who have been my support system for so long. I have gone from seeing them every day, or at least every week, to not seeing them at all. It has made me think of creative ways to keep in touch with them so that it doesn’t seem like it has been so long that I have not seen them.

If you are preparing for your own adventure abroad or doing some traveling, here are some suggestions for staying in touch with those you love:

1. Skype

This is an obvious option for anyone using a computer. Free calls with anyone anywhere and you can see each other face to face! Another bonus, Skype is the perfect way to still have meals together – you can eat breakfast while they are eating dinner!

Skype Video Call Chat

Photo © Stefan Erschwendner

2. Postcards

Postcards are inexpensive enough that you can stock up on them in craft stores, airports, trinket shops in your visiting country, or you can even make them yourself! Print your photo at 4×6, turn it over and write your message, then stick on a stamp and write your friend’s address where they would normally go on a postcard and pop it in the mail!

Homemade Photo Travel Postcard

Photo © Ellen Jo Roberts

3. Email

Since you probably won’t have phone access (unless you pay the extra fee for international service), email is the next best thing. However, if you do have coins, try the payphone at a nearby cafe. Depending on where you stay, there will most likely be a phone available.

Email Communication

Photo © Wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Video

A lot of people like to keep a video diary which they update weekly or even monthly. This is a fun way to bring life (and reassurance) to what you’re experiencing, instead of just writing words. It will also be something great to look back on when you arrive back home and to share with your friends and family.

Travel Video Vlogging Diary

Photo © Wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keeping a journal and/or online blog of your travels will also help when you don’t have time to write each individual person. Just send one email out announcing the blog link and let everyone know it’s the best way to stay updated because of your unpredictable schedule. They will be able to leave you comments and follow your day to day adventures.

 

Happy travels!

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