The better you are at planning and organizing your vacations, the simpler your travel will be. The following 100 travel hacks will help you save time, save money and enjoy better trips so here is second part of the post 100 Travel Hacks to Simplify Your Trips-1
Hotel Travel Hacks
Reduce your costs and enjoy your accommodations using the following ten travel hacks:
51. Use hotel alternatives. Hostels, couch surfing, working on farms, volunteering for boarding and home swaps are all affordable alternatives to staying in hotels.
52. Choose a hotel that offers a real breakfast. This provides you with a better meal than a continental breakfast, saving you money and getting your day off to the right start.
53. Share a hotel room. If you travel in a group then you can save a lot of money by sharing hotel rooms.
54. Read reviews carefully. Hotel reviews can provide great insight into the pros and cons of staying in a specific hotel. Don’t just look at the star ratings. Read through the reviews to see why people did and didn’t like the hotel. People have vary different standards for accommodations so reading those details is important.
55. Ask about early check-in and late check-out. Some hotels offer this at no charge if you ask about it in advance. Others offer it for a minor fee.
56. Make requests in advance. If you want a room on a kids-free floor, away from the ice machine or with the best view then you should request this directly with the hotel before you go. The request will be noted in your account and you can remind the hotel staff of this when you arrive.
57. Try to get a free room upgrade. Helpful tips include ask directly for the upgrade, schmooze the hotel staff, plan your trip for a weeknight during the off season, stay for only one night and arrive within the hour after check-in time.
58. Ask about special discounts. Remember to ask about discounts for loyalty programs, kids, seniors, members of the military, corporate travelers, AAA members and any other specialties that may apply to you.
59. Leave the hotel room’s mini bar alone. Those $6 MnMs and bottles of water aren’t worth it. Get your snacks from the local convenience store and bring them back to the room.
60. Confirm price before checkout. Double-check that any add-ons charged to the room are correct.
Travel Activities Hacks
These ten travel hacks will help you out at your destination:
61. Go to the local tourism office upon arrival. This is the best place to get free and cheap maps, information on the best current local activities and insider tips on what to do while you’re in the area.
62. Stay healthy. Exercise, eat properly and get enough sleep when traveling.
63. Search out free activities. Do your research to find the best free local attractions, the free days at museums, the free festivals and the free markets. Fill your calendar with these events to keep travel costs down
64. Explore the area around your hotel on foot. This allows you to see and experience more in a small amount of time.
65. Schedule downtime. You won’t have a lot of fun on your trip if you’re running from one place to the next to the next in an effort to see everything. Schedule plain old downtime for relaxation on your trip.
66. Connect with local people. Check out a Meetup group, visit a friend that you only know from the Internet or attend a singles mixer. This allows you to meet people during your trip.
67. Get coupons for major attractions. Check the Internet for coupon codes. Call and ask directly if major attractions are offering a deal.
68. Do things that truly interest you. If you never visit art museums at home and they don’t really interest you then don’t feel obligated to check one out just because you’re on vacation.
69. Plan outdoor activities early in the trip. This allows you the time to reschedule them if inclement weather causes you to have to cancel.
70. Check out walking tours. Many cities offer free walking tours that give you great insight into the city. City Guides is a good choice in San Francisco. BA Free Tour is an example in Argentina.
Money Travel Hacks
Make sure to deal with your travel finances appropriately using these ten travel hacks:
71. Set a budget and stick to it. This is the number one rule you need to save money on your vacation.
72. Exchange foreign money at the bank in your destination. This will typically offer better exchange rates than going to a money exchange spot.
73. Buy a cheap money belt. Practical Hacks gives a great explanation of how to turn an ordinary sports knee pad into a useful money belt.
74. Take advantage of credit card rewards. Put all trip expenses on a credit card that gives you cash back. Pay the card off in full immediately upon return. You’ll have a complete record of what you spent in one place (on your credit card statement). Plus you’ll get money back for what you spent.
75. Let the credit card company know that you’ll be traveling. Many credit cards freeze accounts when too many charges show up in a destination away from home. It’s smart fraud protection but it’s inconvenient when you’re traveling. Let the credit card company know about the trip in advance to avoid this problem.
76. Be aware of fees. ATM fees, foreign transaction credit card fees and roaming charges for mobile phones are some of the travel fees to be aware of. Pay with local cash, limit ATM transactions and use a service like Skype to reduce these fees.
77. Bargain when appropriate. Rick Steves has a great guide to travel bargaining.
78. Spend smart when it comes to food during your trip. Don’t waste your travel budget on food. Buy inexpensive fresh produce at the grocery store. Eat out at lunchtime instead of dinner time. Choose appetizers instead of entrees. Avoid pricey tourist restaurants.
79. Track your spending. You should track your spending during the trip to make sure that you really understand how much your spending. There are some great apps out there for tracking spending without receipts.
80. Tip appropriately. Many Americans waste money over-tipping. Learn about tipping in Europe and other destinations before you go.
Safe Travel Hacks
These ten travel hacks will help keep your belongings safe and secure:
81. Be smart with your documents. Make a photocopy of your passport, ID, credit and ATM cards and any other important documents. Pack the originals in your carryon luggage. Pack the copies in the bottom of your checked baggage. Scan a copy and send it all to your email so that it’s also accessible online.
82. Know your emergency numbers. Make yourself an emergency address book. Include the fire, police and ambulance numbers if you’re going to a foreign destination. Also include the contact information for the consulate or embassy. Add any other emergency numbers, such as the local hospital. Store these numbers in your mobile phone and send a copy to your email as well.
83. Keep your valuables in separate places. Travellers Point recommends putting your cash, cards, passport, traveler’s checks, jewelry, etc. in different pockets and bags to reduce the chance of losing everything at once.
84. Use the security locks on hotel room doors. Always make sure that the door closes behind you. Lock the security lock when you’re inside. Don’t leave duplicate keys in the room.
85. Check recommended vaccines and medications. When traveling to a foreign country, you want to make sure that you have the updated medications and vaccines that are recommended for the trip. MDTravelhealth.com is a good resource.
86. Check travel safety warnings. Use the official government site to check the latest travel safety warnings before your trip.
87. Stay aware of your surroundings. Being vigilant about what’s going on around you will help you to avoid safety issues while on vacation. Watch your bags, watch your on-person valuables, watch the people near you.
88. Avoid intoxication. You can’t make smart choices when you’re drunk. This is especially important if you’re in an unfamiliar place and even more important if you’re traveling alone.
89. Learn about local scams. For example, one common pickpocketing scam in South America is for someone to “accidentally” spill something on you and then offer to help clean it up. As they do, they steal your wallet.
90. Trust your gut instinct. The best tip to follow is to trust your gut. If you feel unsafe in a situation, get to safety. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
After Travel Hacks
There is still more to do when you get home. Finish up with these ten post-travel hacks:
91. Have someone pick you up from the airport. You will be tired from your trip so it helps to have a familiar face and help with your bags.
92. Organize your receipts immediately. This will help you to see quickly if there are any incorrect charges.
93. Pay off your credit card immediately. Don’t add to your travel expenses by getting charged interest on your trip.
94. Put your passport back where it belongs. You don’t want it to be lost the next time that you need it.
95. Eat light and healthy for a day or two. This helps your body get over the stress of traveling. It keeps your immune system strong.
96. Seek out medical attention if you aren’t feeling well. Some travel experiences can cause medical issues a few days or weeks later. For example, if you went scuba diving during your trip then you may feel fine until you get on a plane to come home and then travel-related problems can set in.
97. Relax when you get home. Schedule your trip so that you have an evening or a full day of down time before you have to get back to your usual busy schedule.
98. Upload, share and organize your pictures quickly. If you wait too long then you’ll forget what the pictures are of or just put off getting them organized all together. Have a photo organization and scrapbooking day scheduled for a week or two after your trip.
99. Organize any other documents. If you made purchases during the trip, organize the receipts. If you paid an airport re-entry fee that’s good for future trips then store that documentation. If you need to get any rebates or cash in card rewards then do that.
100. Start saving up for your next trip! It’s never too early to begin budgeting and saving for your next vacation.