Category: Travel and Vacations

5 DIY Tips for a Fantastic Vacation in the Adirondacks

Like most, you’ve probably been working from home and staring at your computer all day. You deserve a change in scenery. 

Imagine towering trees, serene lakes, and mountains cascading on the horizon. If you’re in the tri-state area, this is not out of reach and it may be closer than you think.

A vacation in the Adirondacks is what you need. Your summer getaway doesn’t have to break the bank. Take a look at some of these affordable DIY tips to make your summer in the Adirondacks memorable for the whole family.

1. Where to Stay: Campsite

One of the best ways to enjoy the Adirondacks is by camping. Camping offers a great escape from the daily monotony of working from home. Not only is it the most affordable option, usually under $30 a night, it’s also a great way to reconnect with your family in nature.

So, where can you camp? Most campgrounds are near the lakes, offering easy access to outdoor activities. 

From pitching the tent to roasting marshmallows around the campfire, there are plenty of ways to spend quality time with your family.  

2. Where to Stay: Rental Lake House

If camping isn’t your thing, then a lake house rental might be the best option for you. There are plenty of affordable options that can accommodate your whole family. 

With rental homes, you have access to a full kitchen, bathrooms, and comfortable beds. Especially for bigger families, rental homes offer the privacy and space that campgrounds and hotel rooms don’t. Click here to learn more about lakefront vacation rental options in the Adirondacks. 

3. Activity: Go Swimming

On hot summer days, nothing beats jumping into a cool, refreshing lake. Luckily, the Adirondacks are home to some of the country’s most beautiful lakes. In total there are over 3,000 lakes in the area! 

4. Activity: Go Hiking

Take in the beautiful scenery of the Adirondacks during a hike. The Adirondacks are filled with many trails for all skills levels. 

There are plenty of kid-friendly hiking trails, like Cobble Hill or the Peninsula Nature Trails. For the more advanced hiker or those ready for a challenge, check out Mount Haystack or Kane Mountain. 

5. Activity: Ride a Horse

Try something new! Take the family to a local farm and take horseback riding lessons.

Horseback riding is a great activity for all ages. For younger kids, short pony rides will provide lifelong memories, as well as a great photo-opp for mom and dad. For older kids and their parents, horse-riding tours offer a new way to see the surrounding towns and trails. 

Time to Start Planning Your Vacation In the Adirondacks

Take a safe and affordable vacation in the Adirondacks and reconnect with nature. Whether you stay on a campground or in a vacation rental, fun is guaranteed for the whole family.

Want more thrifty vacation tips? Check out other posts in the vacation section of our blog!

5 Common Cruise Booking Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Finding the best cruise for your vacation with family or friends requires knowing what not to do. What if you’ve never booked a cruise before and have no idea what the common cruise booking mistakes are?

You’re in luck; we have a brief guide for you. Here are common cruise booking mistakes and how to avoid them.

1. Settling for the Cheapest Cruise

Cheaper doesn’t always mean better. Some may even argue that you get what you pay for. Even if you are on a budget for cruises, one of the biggest cruise booking mistakes you can make is settling for the cheapest cruise you can find.

Do some research when looking for which cruise to pick and find out their itinerary. Once you have an idea of their itinerary, ask yourself if it meets your expectations for what you have in mind for your vacation. Read cruise reviews online on websites like Cruise Critic or watch Youtube videos/vlogs and find out what previous passengers have to say about their experience. 

For something more in-depth, cruise ship blogs often have tons of helpful information and suggestions such as the best cruises for families, cruise ship sizes, tips for popular cruise destinations, and more.

2. Waiting Until the Last Minute

Contrary to popular belief, cruise lines do not reward those who wait until the last minute. Your best bet is trying to book as early as possible. Booking early ensures you get the best rates and get the best choices for cruise cabins.

3. Flying in on the Same Day as Your Cruise

If you are new to cruises, then there’s a chance you may not know cruise lines typically ask you to arrive at the cruise pier at least 2 hours prior to check-in. Even if you plan on arriving hours before your then, you still run the risk of unforeseen circumstances like delayed flight schedules or maybe even a company strike.

For your peace of mind, try to fly in at least the night before your cruise check-in. Doing so means you get to start your cruise stress-free and relaxed, just how a vacation should be.

4. Forgetting About Visa AND Immunization Requirements

Whether you’re traveling by air or by cruise ship, before you leave, make sure you know about any and all visa and immunization requirements. You can check the travel.state.gov page for all the information you might need regarding visas and passports.

When it comes to immunizations, outbreaks, and even cruise ship inspection results, you can check out the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s website for more information. 

5. Forgetting to Budget for More

Sometimes “all expenses paid” only covers the basics. There’s a chance that most of the things on your cruise will cost extra, typically when it comes to food, drinks, and common cruise activities — see these options as an example. In short, make sure you give yourself some extra wiggle room in your budget to enjoy what might not be included in your “all expenses paid” vacation.

Avoiding Common Cruise Booking Mistakes

If you’ve never booked a cruise vacation before, there’s a chance you may make some common cruise booking mistakes without even knowing. We hope this post has taught you more about common cruise booking mistakes and how to avoid them.

If you enjoyed this post, check out our blog for more!

How Can I Maintain Optimal Health While Out Traveling?

Many people are lucky enough to travel regularly. They may have jobs that require travel.

Or they may be able to work remotely, free to travel as they please. Still, others travel often to spend time with family in other parts of the country and world.

While most people love to travel, it can take a toll on your health if you aren’t intentional. Maintaining optimal health while traveling takes a little planning and discipline.

But you don’t have to come home from each trip with a few extra pounds and a cold that keeps you at home for a week. Wondering how to be a smart traveler on your next work trip? Here is what you need to do.

Prepare Accordingly

If you aren’t living a healthy lifestyle before your trip, what makes you think you can stay healthy while traveling? It’s important to develop good habits as early as possible.

Make sure you are eating well in the weeks leading up to your trip rather than binging on pizza and burgers. The week leading up to your trip is especially important. Eat normally. Don’t surprise your body during this time with different foods.

Eat veggies, leafy greens, and foods with vitamin C for a strong immune system. Take vitamin C supplements during your travels as well. Bring sanitizer onto the plane or train and use it often, so you don’t catch a cold from a dirty surface.

Balance Your Meals

One of the best aspects of traveling is trying new food. Eating local cuisine, whether you are on the other side of the world, or in your neighboring state, makes travel fun.

It’s important to try new foods and eat locally. But don’t eat out every meal. Save the adventurous, not-so-good-for-you meals for dinner.

For breakfast and lunch, eat simple, healthy meals that your body is adjusted to. This is what budget travel is all about as well.

Maintain Your Exercise Routine

Smart travel prioritizes exercise. It’s easy when you travel to ride in cars, buses, planes, and other forms of transportation. It’s tempting not to walk anywhere, but remember to use your feet.

Rather than catching a cab to the dinner restaurant, take a walk. It might take much longer, but you’ll soak up more of the city you are in.

Cycling is another great way to experience a new place, have fun, and get your heart rate up. Many cities around the world are excellent cycling destinations and offer very cheap bike rentals.

It helps to establish a travel-friendly exercise routine as well. There are many workouts you can do without any equipment. Plan a routine ahead of time that burns calories and builds muscles. 

Eating lots of local deserts? Keep those pounds from sticking to your waist by working your core. Discover more about core training in the prior link.

Maintaining Optimal Health While Traveling Isn’t Hard

Maintaining optimal health while you travel isn’t hard. It just takes intentionality.

If you travel often, it will be easier to build healthy routines for planning, traveling to, and experiencing new places.

Looking for more tips regarding a healthy lifestyle? Be sure to visit our blog today.

8 Common Campfire Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Roughly 40 million Americans hit up campsites every year. When they do, it’s almost certain that they’ll build a campfire.

Campfires and camping trips go hand in hand. Unfortunately, though, campfires can be stressful to build, to maintain, and to keep from causing catastrophic damage to countless acres of land.

Therein lies the purpose of this post on campfire mistakes.

Our team’s aim here is to prep you ahead of your next camping trip by telling you everything you shouldn’t do when you’re building fires in the wilderness. We hope that by taking in these no-nos, your next fire experience will go off without a hitch.

Keep reading to learn more!

1. Using Damp Material

Opening up our list of campfire mistakes is the all too common error of using damp material.

If you intend to scavenge for burnable material for starting a campfire, you’d better hope that it hasn’t rained recently. When material is damp, it isn’t going to burn.

Since dampness at your campsite can be unpredictable, we recommend bringing backup firewood from a store to avoid any surprises.

2. Forgetting About Tinder

For those of you that are planning on burning wood logs, understand that getting a fire going isn’t going to be as easy as taking a match to your wood and it going up in flames.

Wood for campfires is hard to burn, especially thick wood. To get it to light, you need to subject it to a steady flame for an elongated period. That’s where kindling comes in handy.

Kindling is small, easily lit material that you can feed into the fire to keep a flame going. Over time, your kindling should be able to heat your primary logs enough that they’ll catch.

3. Not Clearing the Area of Brush

One strong wind hitting your campfire could blow hot debris into the surrounding forest and cause millions of acres to burn. Avoiding that is as easy as making sure that the area surrounding your fire is void of flammable materials. You’ll also want to dig a hole for your fire pit, assuming your campsite doesn’t already have one pre-built.

A small amount of diligence to ensure that your campsite is safe can save thousands of lives so don’t forgo this process.

4. Ignoring Emergency Prep

What if no matter how much you prepare, something adverse happens and a small bit of brush near the forest catches fire. Who would you call? How could you quickly act to stop the spread?

Having answers to those questions is imperative to avoid a bad situation becoming much worse.

Our advice is to make sure your cellphones have enough signal to call emergency services. If they don’t, consider investing in a short-range radio that can ping park authorities. You’d also do well to have a fire extinguisher on hand and quality rope/twine from producers like TwistedGoat to manage miscellaneous events.

5. Failing to Check the Weather

This may seem like an obvious campfire but believe it or not, several people skip this step and pay for it. So, let us remind you that no matter how good you are at starting fires if it’s going to rain the weekend you’re going camping, you’re going to have a bad time.

Check the weather daily before you hit the road to your campsite. If you suspect rain, consider postponing your trip.

6. Getting Too Comfortable

You’ve got your fire lit, you’re sat in your chair enjoying its warmth… Now all that’s left to do is relax, right? Wrong!

First off, fire is very unpredictable as are the people sitting around it so it’s best to maintain vigilance while your fire is active. Second, most fires will require constant attention to keep going. That may mean adding more wood or prodding the fire.

If your intention is to rest and relax, assign a rotating fire duty to your camping crew so people can babysit your flame in shifts.

7. Losing Sight of Children

Children and fire don’t make a good combination. If you lose track of children playing near fire, you may end up with accidents that could lead to lifelong scarring or worse.

If there are kids at your campsite, be proactive in educating them about the dangers of fire and rules they’re to follow to obviate that danger. Even after getting briefed, make sure that whoever is minding the fire at any particular moment is also minding the young people close to it.

8. Not Putting Your Fire Out Fully

When you’re done with your fire for the night, do not let it burn itself out. It may very well burn itself out but it could also burn down all of its surroundings.

A hard and fast rule of camping is that if no one is actively minding the fire, it needs to be doused and checked to ensure it’s fully extinguished. No exceptions.

Avoiding Campfire Mistakes Makes for Positive Memories

Most of us have been on camping trips that are better off forgotten. To make sure your next trip isn’t one of those, heed the campfire mistakes we’ve shared and do what you can to avoid committing them.

Your proactive actions can do wonders when it comes to creating positive memories over the course of your camp out and when it comes to the safety of those you’re sharing the area with.

Hungry for more tips on how to successfully camp or do several other affordable and fun things? If so, explore additional content on our blog!

Safe Travels: A Simple, Affordable Travel Guide for Pandemic Times

The year 2020 changed everything for people who enjoy traveling. Government and health officials seemingly overnight discouraged even short trips, warning people of their risks should they cross the threshold of their own doors.

One year later, we wonder, is it safe to travel again? When will it be safe to travel again? If we can travel now, what kind of safety protocols should we follow in this Covid-19 era to engage in safe travels? 

Keep reading to learn about how and where to travel post-2020. 

Where to Travel

If you’re nervous about the pandemic, you should carefully check out your location before you book it. See what their current covid infection rates are. Visit the CDC’s Covid data tracker to see the most up-to-date information on the state where you’re like to travel. 

Anyplace where you can be a bit more isolated and still on vacation offers you an ideal place to travel. Look for bungalows on the beach or cabins in the woods. 

The pandemic has created an environment perfect for camping. You can go on vacation without rubbing shoulders with a single soul except those in your household. Plus, fresh air is good for the body in these crazy times. 

Where ever you stay, look for residences with outdoor entrances and exit rather than big hotels with a central hallway. Consider individuals buildings for a place to stay rather than an apartment or hotel room. 

How to Travel

After you examine all of the possibilities of where you want to go, you need to determine how to get there. Is air travel safe? Or should you plan out a road trip? 

Air industries have made air travel as safe as possible by spreading out their passengers and requiring them to wear masks. Still, you run a higher risk when you sit in a cabin of recirculated air for hours on end with strangers. 

With that said, you also run risks when you go on long road trips. You will have to stop to sleep, eat, and use the restroom. Visiting multiple places in multiple locations poses a risk as well. 

 

When you’re at home, you stay safe by the individual choices you make. You wear a mask, wash your hands, and generally avoid busy places. 

In the same way, your behavior is the greatest tool to keep you safe while you travel. 

If you opt for a road trip, make sure you carry plenty of food, plan out your bathroom breaks, and wash your hands or use hand sanitizer each time you visit a new place. Your behavior and personal choices will keep you the safest regardless of where you are or how you travel. 

Safe Travels Made Simple

You can still travel in these waning days of the pandemic. Just look for a safe place to travel during covid, and then begin your planning. Make sure you have a supply box of wipes, hand sanitizer, gloves, and masks with you not to mention plenty of food and water if you plan on taking a road trip. 

You can still engage in safe travels in our post-2020 world. 

For more interesting articles that will improve your life, keep visiting our website. 

5 DIY Tips for Thrifty Travel

1.4 billion people traveled internationally in 2018. Each year since 1950, the United Nations World Tourism Organization has seen an increase in international travels throughout the world. If you’re looking to jump on the international traveler bandwagon, or you are just looking to take a cross country road trip, you are not alone!

Traveling is one of the most fulfilling parts of being on the planet, but it can also cause stress and be expensive if you don’t consider certain aspects. Read on to learn five DIY tips for thrifty travel, and you can be on your way to your next vacation. 

1. Find Cheap Flights

Don’t be afraid to put in the work to find the cheapest flights possible. Use different sites and different apps, such as Skyscanner, which will show you all of the flight options instead of trying to highlight the most expensive ones. 

If you want to be a thrifty traveler, be prepared to reduce your luggage and not be picky about your seat. Putting in the research for different flights will give you the upper hand, and you’ll know you’re getting the best deal.  

2. Reuse Old Glasses Cases

If you have old glasses cases or sunglasses cases, these can be reused for safekeeping and organizing tons of other items. You can store chargers and cords, which are always a pain to keep untangled, as well as jewelry, or anything else small and easily lost. This is a great way to avoid having to buy an extra travel case.

3. International GPS 

If you’re an avid traveler, you know that getting lost is a part of the gig. And sometimes, getting lost can get quite expensive, either with your money or your time, especially if you went a couple of hours in the wrong direction. 

Getting an international GPS is a way to avoid having to pay this toll. Though they may be a bit pricey when considering frugal travel, they pay off on the long end, knowing that you can experience your adventure without getting lost in an unfamiliar place.

4. Hoodie Neck Pillow

A hoodie neck pillow can be a lifesaver for a long airplane ride during international travel or train rides. Even when you have headphones or earbuds in, it might not be enough to block your neighbor (or your loud family). 

You can make these by sewing a hood onto your comfortable neck pillow, or you can buy one already attached. Make sure it’s long enough to cover your eyes and ears! 

5. Take Free Tours

There are so many free tours of different cities and attractions across the world. Do your research ahead of time and find them, and do them.

If you can’t find any free tours where you’re traveling, there’s probably a podcast or YouTube video about it. Download it and take a tour of the place yourself, for free. 

Thrifty Travel Tips 

These thrifty travel tips will help you be smart, comfy, and save money whenever you choose to travel next. Travel should be fun and exciting, not stressful and expensive! Get creative and put these tips to the test. And, if you thought this article was helpful, browse through more of our articles today! 

5 Camping Essentials You Shouldn’t Leave Home Without

Did you know that around 40 million Americans go camping at least once a year?

If you’re hoping to join in on the camping craze, you’re probably wondering what you could possibly need beyond a backpack and boots.

Luckily, it’s pretty simple to put together a quick camping essentials checklist!

Keep reading below for a list of five essentials every new camper needs! 

1. Shelter Must-Haves

Perhaps the most important camping essentials are shelter supplies. Typically this refers to tents.

Along with a tent, you’ll want to bring a tarp. Tarps are useful (and cheap) for laying beneath tents if the ground is wet or uneven. They’re also ideal if your tent doesn’t have a built-in rain cover.

A sturdy sleeping bag is also essential for any serious camper. The right sleeping bag will keep you warm, as well as protect you from bugs. 

2. First-Aid Kit 

A few bumps and bruises are inevitable during a camping trip. However, you’ll want a first-aid kit just in case anything more severe takes place.

A well-stocked first-aid kit should include bandaids and gauze, topical ointment and antiseptic, and over-the-counter pain and allergy medicine.

3. Cookware Camping Essentials

Whether you’re planning a short or long-term trip, you’ll need to pack some cookware to get you through the journey.

If you want to save on space, check out an all-in-one cooking kit. For example, take a look at this scout kit—it combines a portable stove, a pot, and a dishware set.

You’ll need to either bring a self-starting fire source or a lighter to start a fire with. Matches are less ideal since they can be difficult to start if it’s wet outside.

You’ll also want to bring a water purifier. Ideally, you’ll bring along enough drinkable water to last your trip. However, it’s wise to have a purifier on hand in the off chance you run out of bottled water.

4. Additional Clothing

While you want to keep your camping gear as lightweight as possible, an extra set of clothes is essential for any camping trip.

Since the weather can change in the blink of an eye, you don’t want to be left stranded with wet clothes. Even if you’re camping during the summer, temperatures will drop significantly overnight, and you don’t want to get sick at the hand of soaked clothes.  

5. Local Maps

It never hurts to have some paper maps of your campsite. Additionally, a phone with GPS capabilities is a great addition to any trip.

Many phones lose service in more secluded campsites. However, there are plenty of free apps you can use to download maps offline. These are wise to have especially if you plan on doing any hiking or exploring—the last thing you want is to be lost in the woods with no shelter or food.

Starting Your Journey

Packing for camping can be overwhelming if it’s your first excursion into the wilderness. But with the camping essentials above, you’ll have no trouble handling whatever mother nature throws your way!

For more articles on thrifty living and travel, check out the rest of our website!