Expert Travel Reviews

Avoiding Scams while Traveling

June 30, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Scams are part and parcel of world travel. Whether you are visiting a third world country or standing in the heart of New York City, you are vulnerable to scams. Here are a few that you should be aware of:

1. A stranger asks for fuel money – Usually this is accompanied with a sob story of a funeral, family emergency, etc. If you do feel compelled to help this person, tell them that you will go with them to a gas station and you will find that they disappear very quickly.

2. Free gift – Someone asks you a very simple favor (i.e. directions) and return they put a bracelet on your arm or something similar. You don’t want it but you can’t take it off your arm either, so feel compelled to give that person some money. A variation of this is where someone “finds” a “valuable” watch or bracelet in front of you and tries to sell it to you.

3. Diversion – You get a flat tire and a good Samaritan pulls up to help you. Keep an eye out, his friend might be emptying your luggage. This works in reverse as well, where you are flagged down by someone who needs help. Another diversionary tactic is where someone helps to clean bird poo from your shirt. You wallet might disappear at this point.

4. Overcharge – Taxis are notorious for taking advantage of unsuspecting travellers. If they are on the meter, they will deliberately take longer routes. If they are without a meter they will name atrocious rates.

For more travel tips we also recommend Cheap Hotels Blog. They offer hotel reviews and travel tips.

Trekking about in Cape Town

June 23, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Going for a trek is always an invigorating experience and it allows you to take in the surroundings at your pace. Trekking or hiking in the Cape Town region can be an unforgettable experience due to its beauty and wildlife. But before you decide to rove the countryside you should take some precautions to stay safe.

1. Dehydration is a killer. Remember to take plenty of water with you.

2. Treks have a way of stretching out, so you may lose track of time. Take some energy bars or snacks that will keep you going.

3. Strong, thick boots are essential as you are walking in snake and scorpion country. Thick socks are also advisable accessories.

4. Although shorts might be tempting at times, trousers are more advisable in this location.

5. A waterproof jacket to keep you nice and dry in case of sudden showers.

6. Carry a torch with you if you leave in the afternoon. Nightfall can be sudden and can leave you disoriented.

7. Carrying a first aid kit is never a bad thing. If you don’t know how to use any of the medicines that are contained within it, consult a doctor on
their use.

8. Wear a hat and sunblock. Prolonged unprotected exposure to the sun can cause problems, so it is better to have some protection.

9. Get a route map that will initially help you plan out where you are going and will guide you during your hike. This can be purchased locally or even downloaded from the internet.

10. Finally, make sure you cellphone is charged, has credit and has numbers of the local emergency services saved in the phonebook.

Looking for an inexpensive Hawaiian vacation?

June 20, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Almost everyone dreams of Hawaii travel. No matter where you are on the planet. Period. Of course, there are the smart travelers who plan way ahead of time and then there are those would like to take off on an impulse. It’s obvious that both the former and the latter look for reliable deals online as this is not about overspending but about getting the best value for money.

And with the downturn of the economy, perhaps splurging on a Hawaiian vacation might feels exorbitant but the truth is that everyone needs a break now and then, and so why not spend your money on a vacation that offers you the best deals.

Obviously there are different ways by which one can look for a vacation, one being, using the internet while the more old-fashioned way being to contact a travel agent who will take care of your travel needs after finding out what your budget is and when you would like to travel and so on and so forth.

Perhaps, for some of the old folks, finding deals for Hawaii vacations the old-fashioned way seems to be a safer bet while most of the young ones look for deals over the internet, where virtually all relevant information to the vacation desired is provided including helping them to book their travel tickets, car rental service and hotel reservations all at the same time.

A big advantage of this to take care of all the administrative issues before settling down for a vacation of few days that will be unforgettable.

Engaging in an adventure holiday

June 17, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Lounging on the beach in the Bahamas, Maldives or any other great tropical destination is awesome, but it is not for everyone. Some people want a little more action on holiday, especially to get all that work related stress off their minds. For those people, an adventure holiday could be the best option.

White water rafting is a fun activity to engage in and can offer a lot of excitement to its participants. However, if you decide to engage in this activity without any professional help, there are a few precautions you should take.

Whether it is a one man raft or a larger raft that can carry several people, you must ensure that life vests are worn. Rapids can overwhelm even the strongest of swimmers. If your raft gets tipped over, life vests are the one thing that can ensure you float back to the top. Tipping over is an occupational hazard, so wear light clothes. Material that will quickly dry and which does not weigh much is what you choose.

Equipment condition is something you should check thoroughly. This is critical if it is your own equipment, because it is likely to be used infrequently. Frequently used equipment like those from a rental is likely to be in better condition because the rental will check it every time it is returned. Carry only essential items if you are doing a long rafting trip and ensure that everything is packed in waterproof bags. Do not take any food items that need refrigeration and stick to canned goods which have a lot of nutrition if possible.

Finally, ensure that everyone on the trip knows what they are getting into and where to keep their heads in the event of a tip over.

A Trip to Dubai

June 10, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

If you’ve never been there, Dubai probably conjures up images of tents, camels and Bedouins smoking sheesha’s in your mind. While all of that can still be found in certain places, modern Dubai is as far from that image as possible. Towering skyscrapers, cutting edge technologies and opulence by the bucket load is what you can expect now if you visit there.

First of all you should be aware that you are visiting a Moslem country. Therefore you should be prepared to hearing the call for prayers regularly throughout the day and especially before Sunrise. You should also be aware that most establishments close for a period of about four hours every day, around midday.

Dubai is a shopper’s paradise, so make sure that your wallet is well stocked. It is home to he world’s third largest shopping mall and the world famous Gold Souk. The Gold Souk is unparalleled in the world and nothing can prepare you for the sight of tons of gold jewelry stretching out in every direction when you get there. Dubai has many great hotels and restaurants which are designed to cater every kind of palette. It is a fun destination for kids as well, with amusement parks, a great zoo, indoor ski slopes and whole host of other activities designed to keep them captivated for hours.

Before you go there, check up on the weather as it can hit all sorts of extremes (heat, cold, rain etc.) depending on the time of the year.

Getting Through a Long Flight

June 4, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Although air travel is more commonplace now, the speeds with which we reach destinations have not changed by much. This does not matter for first or second time fliers, but for regular travelers air travel soon becomes a bore. Cramped seating, unchanging scenery, not-very-exciting food etc, are all hallmarks of any flight. But by doing a few simple things, you can make a boring long flight more bearable.

Killing time – Bring a book or two along, to keep you occupied. Pocketbooks are better suited for this purpose. Don’t read for long periods at a stretch, as the lighting in the plane is not the best for reading. Break the reading with short naps and by listening to some music with your eyes closed. Carrying a small MP3 player with you will ensure that you have all the music that you like. You could also carry a PSP or similar gaming device as well.

Move around – Sitting in one place for a long time can cramp you up and affect your blood flow. Every two hours or so, get up and walk around. Spend a few minutes walking up and down the aisle; if possible do some light stretching. Yes this can earn you a few quizzical looks, but you should ignore them in the interests of your health. You should also try to get seating near the exit doors. These seats have more leg room than the others and are usually reserved for disabled persons. At the time of check-in, inquire from the staff as to their availability and take them if they are not required for any disabled persons.

Don’t dry up – Dehydration is an unseen assailant. Go easy on the alcohol or drop it if you can. Drink lots of water or juice to keep you hydrated.