How To Get Ready For A Long Term International Trip

t20Taking a trip out of the country can be overwhelming. There are lots of important details to tend to before you leave your home behind. With the right amount of planning, you can make this a smooth and seamless venture and ensure that nothing gets overlooked. Following is a comprehensive checklist to help you get started.

Make sure that there are no loose ends at work. Let your co-workers know when you will be leaving and your exact date of return. Send out regular email reminders in advance of your trip so that no one forgets. Clean out your inbox and delegate all unfinished business to capable parties. You should also create an auto-message for all email contacts and update your status on your voice message. Have a special contact person set up in the office to field calls and mitigate problems on your behalf.

At home, let your utility companies know that you’ll be leaving and for how long. Turn off the gas and electricity in your home if you’re worried about potential fires. In houses that require these measures, you can even have the utility company handle this for you. Clean out your refrigerator so that no spoiled foods are awaiting you when you return. If you have the funds, consider hiring a housekeeper to do one final clean before you go. This way, you can come home to a tidy and fresh-smelling abode.

Have your vehicle serviced. Sitting dormant for several months can be just as bad for a vehicle as heavy use and limited or poor maintenance. Make sure that all fluids are at the appropriate levels and be sure that your gas tank is full. This will prevent sediment from collecting in the engine as the water within fuel begins to evaporate.

You will also need to recruit a friend or family member to turn your vehicle on for you if you will be gone for three weeks or more. After sitting dormant for several weeks, the car battery will be drained. Having someone run the vehicle on your behalf will prevent this unnecessary wear and tear.

Consider having your luggage shipped out to your destination ahead of your trip. This can save you a lot of money and time. Not only will you spend less time checking in at the airport, but you’ll also have a lot less to carry. Many luggage shipment companies will deliver your items right to the hotel of your choosing.

Check to ensure that you’ll have funds at the destination. Pack several credit cards or travelers checks and bring a suitable amount of cash. Stow these things in safe, secure places and be sure to obtain travel insurance. Hindsight is the wrong time to discover that you have not purchased enough protection. Also, you’ll be a lot less worried about potential loss when you’ve secured the protection you need.

Think about using a long term international airport parking service. This will cover you for transportation both to and from the airport, given that these companies often have complimentary shuttles. These professionals can also assist by turning your car on as necessary. Using these professionals is often the easiest and surest way to protect your auto when planning to leave the country for several weeks or more.


How Expensive Is It to Winter in the Sun

t19Is it expensive to winter in the sun? Well I can only speak as I have experienced life in Spain. It does depend on your expectations. Housing is still very low in price but is beginning to rise, apartments can still be found under 50k. Inland houses offer more land and are cheaper than on the coast. There are project dwellings available or habitable houses. Long-term winter rentals are available too.

Heating is obviously cheaper than in England. We have found the winter here to be quite mild and in fact haven’t put a fire on all winter, although some days a cardigan is appreciated. There have been some chilly days, but usually by lunchtime, it reaches 18-20 degrees. Evenings can be cool. We are told, it has been a mild winter here.

Food is probably a similar price as in England, but wine and beer are plentiful and inexpensive. You will be able to eat outside most days if you have a sheltered patio area. Many people eat out at the tapas bars and restaurants regularly. In some areas English products can be hard to find, and fresh milk isn’t always available, however fresh bread is very plentiful, with many local bakers making hand finished loaves.

Cars seem expensive but we have brought our car from England and my partner seems happy to drive it, although he has also driven left-hand drive hired cars. In winter the roads here are very quiet and the motor ways nearly void of traffic, joining all the local towns and villages in a network system; certainly in this area.

Entertainment, depending on your preferences, can be low-key and low-cost. Walking, cycling, days on the beach, café culture and local bars are high on the agenda. Sport is very popular, swimming, padel-tennis, squash etc.

We enjoy the peace and quiet of wintering in Spain, with its quiet beaches, and deserted countryside, in the summer it can get very crowded and up to 40 degrees, too warm for us. We return to England in the summer and have a large mobile home in the countryside to return to. If you are able to retain your property in England and let it out, you will have the security of returning if ever you wanted to, without finding yourself off the property ladder.

I have an internet business which brings in useful cash and gives me a great interest whilst my sporty partner enjoys padel-tennis, squash, and cycling. If you would like to know more about making money online, affiliate marketing could be the answer. With the guidance of a coach providing sales training, products for your customers, for which you get paid a generous commission. Plus sales pages to save you building websites initially and you work to a tried and tested formula. With the training provided you can start to earn as you learn the techniques.


4 Important Tips to Follow While Buying New Luggage

t18As the season of travel is coming back again during the summer, it is again that time where you decide to buy new luggage. This is itself a big investment because buying good quality luggage is no easy task. There are many cost concerns and quality concerns that are raised very easily while buying luggage. We have got a few tips for you that can be of great use in the long run. These tips must be followed without fail in order to ensure top quality luggage.

1. Always consider your needs

There are many issues that might come up in the future that will make you travel. Thus it is important to take your travelling needs into consideration. The luggage you purchase must obviously depend on the type of travel you do. For example, there are people who travel for business and then there are people who travel for leisure.

2. Know your weight and size restrictions

These days all the airlines have restrictions when it comes to the weight of your luggage. In order to avoid any kind of additional charges it is important for you to take this factor of weight into consideration. Thus if you are trying to save money take this tip into consideration. It will do you a whole lot of good.

3. Test the luggage in the store before buying

You need to do a thorough test of your luggage before you actually purchase it. This will not only help you to get a feel of the luggage but it will also enable you to gain a trust of quality as far as your luggage is concerned. Thus always practice this tip in order to purchase a good quality luggage at a reasonable price.

4. Read online reviews of luggage

It is obviously extremely important to go through the reviews of a particular brand or product. It is simple common sense. This practice will enable you to gain some important information as far as your luggage is concerned. There are reviews of every product listed on almost every online retailer’s list and it is up to you whether you want to make good use of this or not. Thus this means that you must always do your research online in order to get a good hold as far as the quality and cost of your luggage is concerned. It is one of the important things to remember.


Helpful Tips to Follow While Buying Luggage

t17You might have asked yourself the question of how to buy good luggage many times. There are certain important points to take into consideration while going through this particular process. Here you will also be able to gain some useful insights into the luggage and/or baggage world. These tips should be utilized to a very large extent because these are very important.

1. The weight and size of the luggage

You obviously don’t want to under pack for any trip that you are going to make. For this purpose it is important to choose the size as well as weight of your baggage without any type of complications. There are also bags that are labelled as light weight but it is recommended to never take the label for what it is. There is always something behind it.

2. The durability and construction

Waterproofing, fabric and frame are the basics for durability and construction of luggage. Thus it is recommended to look for these characteristics while you are selecting your luggage. In case your bag has an inner frame, you must look for the fiberglass that can provide immense strength but is also extremely lightweight.

3. A stand out style

You must just say no to any type of black luggage. There are other colors that can make your luggage look as sophisticated as it can get. Colors like blue, yellow and red look very beautiful when they are applied on your baggage. Thus it is good if you think outside the box and go for something that is extraordinary yet beautiful. People always notice the color of your bag while you are travelling. Hence make the most of this opportunity and purchase a bag that you feel is the best for you.

4. Warranties and brands are very important

Who said don’t fall for the brand. The brand is an essential and important characteristic that must be taken into consideration. This is because without a good brand you will not be able to assure yourself of good quality and this can affect your long term needs and requirements. Also the warranty that you can avail on the luggage you purchase says a lot about your usage. You should thus go for the best and make good use of your luggage. There is always a lot in store than you might actually know about. It is one of the important things to remember.


Get Yourself a Custom Made Suitcase for Better Use

t16A suitcase is a very catchy term and object. It is very useful in our day-to- day life as we cannot travel without it. For some people it is their way of living. Imagine a custom suitcase that has all the characteristics which makes people believe that it actually belongs to you. These types of suitcases are always able to express your entire creativity, share your sense of pride and also represent your great company. You can choose any suitcase in the ever increasing collection in order to benefit more from them. Customization of a suitcase mostly depends on the three basic characteristics. These are explained as below.

1. The color and size of your suitcase

Any custom suitcase should have an appropriate color as well as size. Both these characteristics go hand in hand and there is nothing that can stop you from getting your own color and size. Always go from something that is fancy in a sophisticated manner and is also catchy. It must also depict that is actually belong to you and no one else. This is what a custom suitcase is all about.

2. Accessories of your suitcase

The accessories of your suitcase are also extremely important as far as customization of your suitcase is concerned. There are many accessories that you can include in your suitcase. This means that you must customize your suitcase in such a manner that there is enough space for all your accessories. Never leave any stone unturned because it must be made in such a manner that you are able to put all your belongings and important things properly without any damages.

3. Your image

Your image is very important. Do you want to maintain a sophisticated image or an image that is very fancy? This is something that you must give a deep think into. This will help you to get the best out of your customization. People are going to judge you on the basis of how you have designed or customized your suitcase. You must keep this fact in your mind. Your suitcase will speak a lot about you in the long run. There is nothing to worry about if you have taken care of all these aspects. You can go ahead and proceed with the customization of your suitcase and there will be no harm at all. It is one of the important things to remember.


Why NOT Choose My Own Homestay Family

t15In this day and age of automated-self-serve-online-do-it-yourself-web-based-point-and-click, it hardly seems necessary to pay the extra $ to a 3rd party company to find homestay accommodation for myself when planning a trip abroad. Or does it?

This is the question many international students and travelers are asking themselves. We book our own hotels after all – so why NOT homestay?

The short answer in a nutshell is that homestay is not a hotel. It is an unregulated industry. While a hotel is required by law to meet certain minimal standards of cleanliness, safety, and service, homestays have no such mandated oversight.

This means that booking your own room with an unknown family directly is a complete crap shoot – while you may get lucky and land yourself a fabulous accommodation, you may just as likely book yourself in the homestay from hell.

Let’s face it – every family that posts online will try to promote themselves as the best option for you. It’s in their interest after all. But what’s in YOUR best interest?

A placement Agency? Really? Isn’t the homestay placement agency just in it for the money? Why should they really care if I have a great homestay experience or not? Well, let’s just call it the invisible hand of the free market.

Consider: A homestay agency that doesn’t care about the quality of its homestays is no better than a bad homestay family. In fact, they are worse -they are a bad business as well, and a bad business will not stand the test of time. A good homestay company on the other hand will build its reputation, expand its services across cities and districts, export its model, and organically expand as part and parcel of a natural evolution nurtured on sound and ethical business practices.

So an experienced professional homestay company doesn’t find the best possible homestay for you – they find it for them. Only by making you a happy customer will they prevail. And if a family they have chosen turns out to be less than what it should be, you can believe that as the customer, you will always be right. And that comforting assurance when you are far away from home in a foreign land without any other support network is well worth the small premium a long established professional agency will charge you.

Homestay should be more than just a place to lay your head and get some food on the fly. It is a window into another culture. It is an invitation to live, share, and experience a completely foreign lifestyle from the inside.

It is a rare opportunity to learn from, and teach to, others. Arguably, it is the most valuable experience of your entire travel abroad – probably not the kind of thing you want to leave to long-distance intuition or luck.


How to Hire a Taxi for Safe and Reliable Medical Transportation

t14When it comes to non-emergency medical visits, getting out of the house and to the appointment with your physician or medical team can be incredibly difficult. Depending on your condition, there could be mobility issues that make getting into and out of your car difficult, or you might have a wheelchair or motorized scooter that makes normal travel seem almost impossible. There’s good news – you can hire a service to get you to your medical visit on time and in comfort.

Consider the following points while booking:

1. Accommodating Mobility Issues

Whether you’re talking about public transport or your own personal vehicle, accommodating mobility issues can be tough to do. Buses aren’t built to be particularly easy to enter or exit for those who need a little help getting around. Even passenger cars and vans can be hard to use. Hiring a cab for safe and reliable medical transportation actually ensures that you enjoy an easy entry and exit process, combined with professional, caring service.

2. Wheelchairs and Scooters

The problem of traveling with a wheelchair or motorized scooter is significant, even with standard, folding wheelchairs. Add motorized components and batteries, and things become even more challenging. Working with a company that specializes in providing medical transportation solutions can help. For instance, you’ll find a number of modern vehicles in the fleet equipped to make traveling with a wheelchair, motorized wheelchair or even a motorized scooter a simple and hassle-free process. Accessible vehicles are more than just larger. They’re designed with ramps and wheelchair security systems to lock your chair in place while riding. There is also room for up to three caregivers or helpers to accompany you on your medical visit.

3. For Seniors

Another benefit of hiring the right cab is that there are companies that specialize in providing seniors with caring, compassionate travel service. Seniors have specific requirements when it comes to the vehicles in which they travel (lower entry points, easier to access handles, etc.), but they also require professional drivers who understand the differences inherent in transporting seniors versus younger passengers. For instance, seniors often are unable to cope with multiple stops or long waits in the back of a taxi, and will frequently require physical assistance getting in and out, as well. Drivers are also professionally trained to handle assistive devices, including canes, walkers, and more. The right company can offer all this and much more.


The Importance of Wi-Fi in a Cab

t13Once upon a time, taking a taxi was a pretty simple process. You hailed a taxi from the corner, or caught one outside the arrivals terminal at the airport. You told the driver where you were headed, and then you sat back and rode. The time between catching it and arriving at your destination was dead time – downtime where there was nothing that could be done. That’s changing today. Wi-Fi in a cab allows you access to unprecedented benefits.

Checkout the benefits of Wi-Fi while travelling:

Productivity on the Go

Most of us have become accustomed to doing at least some work on the go. You might network with business associates on your smartphone while riding the train to the office. You might use your downtime between appointments and meetings to get some work done on that report. In these instances, you use your device’s data connection. However, that can be problematic in some area. Tall buildings, bridges, tunnels and the like can all make it difficult to get any signal at all, much less one capable of handling heavier data transmissions. With Wi-Fi in a taxi, you don’t have to worry about that at all.

No Data Roaming Charges

For travelers, the prospect of having to pay steep data roaming charges while using their device during travel is a very daunting prospect. Those prices can be very steep. In fact, many travelers opt not to use their phone, laptop or tablet just to avoid them. With in-car Internet, though, you can access anything from restaurant menus to hotel reservation systems while traveling and never have to worry about paying those high fees.

Setting Trip Itineraries

Those traveling to a new city need the chance to find sights of interest and set their itinerary. That can be problematic during the rush of travel – it’s impossible on most flights, and there’s just no time within an airport, during the rush of deplane and struggling to get to baggage claim. With Wi-Fi, though, it’s simpler than ever to check out the destinations that interest you, the sights to see in the area and much more, all from the back of the car while you’re being professionally driven to your accommodations in town.

Wireless Payment

Another benefit of having wireless connection during travel is the ability to pay without opening your wallet. While this is possible using smartphone apps with some companies, it’s not available across the board. There’s also the fact that using an app requires mobile data, and that can come with high costs. Thus wireless connection gets around that problem handily, allowing travelers to easily pay with their choice of mobile payment methods, including in-app payments, and more.


Dealing With the Unexpected

t12Well our “winter in Spain” has ended and the ferry delivered us onto English soil and our disasters began. All roads nominated by the sat.nav. were closed. In fading light and occasional street lights we tried to pore over the map, whilst the sat.nav couldn’t understand why we were ignoring instruction and kept telling us to go round the round-about and join the nominated road. Very frustrating! A journey which should have taken us 3 hours took 5 plus hours!

First the A3 was closed as traffic piled off the ferry and in the dark diversion signs were either unseen of missing. We circled Portsmouth together with other motorist for a while, then the sat.nav kicked in and we headed north.

After 6 months of virtually clear roads in Spain the sight of car headlights as far as you could see, and bumper to bumper traffic, was a bit of a culture shock. Many other roads were closed including the A1M and 421 which was the route specified. Eventually the sat.nav. gave us an alternative route and we arrived in the early hours of the morning.

On arriving home there were more problems we had arranged with the plumber to drain the water system dismantle showers etc. this he had done but he had not returned to reinstate them, so we had no bathroom facilities or water! Not really funny at 3am.

At least the weather has improved in England from the visions we had seen on TV. In fact it is today warmer than in Spain so we have definitely brought the good weather with us!

So perhaps the moral of this story is check all instructions have been fully carried out don’t assume they will be. Also carry a torch and a large-scale map, in case problems arise, perhaps I should have been a girl guide!

We have enjoyed our first winter in the sun, and look forward to returning to our house in Spain in the autumn. So if you are fed up with cold wet winters and are wondering how you can avoid them in future, let me recommend affiliate marketing as a means of a growing an income, and a very satisfying way of life.

With the help and guidance of a good mentor supplying products to tempt your customers, in a range to inspire them, plus excellent training in marketing, you will soon be beginning to earn as you master the techniques.

Begin part-time and decide if working online is what you are looking for. Affiliate marketing is suitable for most people who are determined to succeed and are prepared to invest time and effort. Only basic computer skills are required to start.


4 Tips to Follow While Driving in the Rain

t11Driving a car of your own has pleasures in itself where you get to modify things according to your requirements and capabilities. Driving on your own is an art in itself where you need to be perfectly skilled with the techniques where you need to handle your car, keep other passengers safe and keep your eyes on the road to avoid accidents. Despite weather conditions outside, you need to have the skills of driving well on the road and reach your destination safely. The weather affects the driver in a great way where the scorching heat can take a toll on and make you feel dizzy or heavy rains can make your eyesight weak so as to not see anything around you on the road. Despite such issues, you need to have the strength to survive in circumstances and it often comes along with practise.

Driving during the rains is something most drivers dread as it is when there is the most number of accidents caused. The drivers cannot see the road ahead or the car tyres tend to skid on slippery roads and thus cause a mishap. Here are a few tips that would help you drive safely during the rains and not fall prey to any mishaps.

• Avoid driving unless necessary – If you are already on the road and there is a shower coming your way, you cannot always afford to go back to where you came from or stop somewhere until the rain passes away. If you are indoors and intend to reach somewhere, try and stay indoors unless it is something imperative. Being out on the road while it is raining is something that should be avoided for safety reasons where slippery roads or water pools could lead to accidents.

• Check your headlights and wipers – Before the rainy season hits; remember to check the necessary accessories of the car. Accessories such as headlights, indicators, wipers, etc. are the ones that are often put to use when it pours heavily. Getting stuck midway with any one of these accessories not functioning can land you in deep trouble or probably an accident. You could consider checking it every day before stepping out as a precautionary measure.

• Maintain safe distances from other cars – Even if you are driving while it is raining, keep safe distances from the cars ahead especially if they are large trucks. The water that they spray with the large wheels is enough to blur your vision and thus to make you lose control of the wheels.

• Equip yourself with the necessities – Necessary equipment such as umbrella, raincoat, torch, food, clothing and waterproof footwear should always be available at hand in your car. You never know when you would require them and miraculously helping you to get out of a tense situation while you are stuck midway due to the heavy rains.