One of the biggest challenge every parent has to take while traveling is their kids being picky about what they eat. It can be frustrating especially when you’re inside the plane and you let your kids eat some fruits, and they suddenly burst out because they want to eat some fast food instead.
Situations like that is part of parenting and it’s our job to let kids know the importance of eating healthy food. But at the end of the day, they are still kids, and they’ll eventually laugh about it when they get older. But for now, let’s talk about how to deal with their picky eating habits while traveling. Here are nine tips down below on how to deal with it.
Let Them Eat What They Like
- Tasting exotic foods is probably the best part when traveling. But what if your kids want to stick to their burgers and fries instead? You know what? Let them be. There’s no point on forcing them to eat those fried scorpions unless they really want to try it out. Remember, you’re on a vacation, don’t stress yourself out to your kids not wanting to eat those exotic foods the locals have prepared.
Get a Good Breakfast
- Breakfast is probably the easiest meal of the day to deal with when traveling with a picky eater. Opt for toast, cereal, bagels, or pancakes and let your kids eat those to their heart’s content. Letting them eat a delicious breakfast will make them full for long throughout the day, which means less hassle to deal with.
Research Your Destination
- While still at home, it’s advisable to research your destination and what kind of foods they offer and see if it suits your kids. This also gives you a chance to know how their food is cooked especially street foods. Give your child some probiotics to help strengthen their gut while traveling. In case something happens, travel insurance will cover that up so don’t forget to opt for one.
- It’s important to have a backup plan when you’re traveling with a fussy eater. So before flying, make sure that you packed your kids favorite meals and snacks. So whenever your kid will ask for food while traveling, you can just grab the pack and give them something to eat.
Pack Your Own Plane Food
- It’s going to be a long flight for everyone especially if you have a hungry child, and we never know what kind of food they will serve inside the plane. In case of emergency, pack some homemade meals that your kids will surely love to eat.
- It only takes a little encouragement to let them try new and exotic food. You don’t have to let them finish the whole plate, a single bite is enough to let them know how it tastes like. If they love it, then they will surely finish the whole thing. If they don’t, then why bother?
Check The Menu Before Ordering
- Before ordering out when dining in a restaurant, take time to check the menu first and see if they have any child-friendly food options. You can also use the TripAdvisor or Yelp app on your smartphone to check out which restaurants are family friendly. If a restaurant doesn’t have a kid’s menu, check the appetizer section, they have lots of meals there that your kids will enjoy.
The “No Dessert Until” Rule
- Of course, the best way to let your kids eat what’s in front of them is to use the “no dessert until” rule. You’re on a vacation, and there will be lots of food temptations lying around every corner especially sweets. Your kids are surely eyeing for them, but don’t let them take over you. Always teach them some good eating practices first. Let them eat those fruit and veggies on their plate before giving them that deliciously looking ice cream.
Let Them Eat Something Before Bed
- The best way to end the day is to let your fussy eating kid have something to eat before bed. Letting your kids have a full stomach before sleeping will ensure that they’ll have a good night sleep and better morning for tomorrow. Traveling is exhausting and it’s important to give them foods before bed to regain the energy they lost throughout the day.
Looking for the best travel deals for 2019? Then look no further than this article. Not all travel deals are bad, some of them can benefit not just you, but also the whole family. These travel perks listed below will make your travel escapade a little less expensive. So what are you waiting for? Continue reading down below.
Free Flights for Kids at Frontier Airlines
- Traveling alone can be costly, how much more when you bring the whole family with you. But cast your worries away with Frontier Airlines! This 2019, they are offering an unbelievable deal for your kids. Children under the age of 15 are free-of-charge this year.
- But before that, you have to sign up for Discount Den for a yearly subscription of $59.99. Discount Den has lots of exclusive flight deals that you can take advantage all year long.
- There are some special rules and restrictions with this deal though including:
- Must purchase an adult ticket
- Babies and Toddlers aren’t part of the promo
- Only specific days are available where you can get free tickets for your kids
- Checked bags and seat selections are still charged
- If Frontier Airlines isn’t available in your area, you can check your local airlines instead and see if they have any special promos available.
Get a Travel Discount with American Forces Travel
- If you’re an active or retired military, then American Forces Travel is here to help you get the most out of your travel needs. The discount covers a wide range of travel perks including discounts for hotels, airfare, car rentals, vacation packages, cruises, and more for military people. If you aren’t part of the military but still want to take advantage of such discounts, use a travel rewards card to avail them.
- Tired of spending your birthday at your home? Say goodbye to boring birthday celebrations at Destination Hotels. The hotel offers a 20% discount if you book your accommodation through their site in your birthday month. Not only that, but you can also score some bonus discount perks on birthday sweets and desserts too.
- Enjoy theme parks? Legoland offers free admission to kids under the age of 12 on their birthday. Now that’s the best way to spend a birthday! Disneyland also has a few birthday perks for kids including free drinks, pixie dust, and a trip to the Magical Express Bus that tours around the area. They also prioritize kid birthday celebrants by letting them skip in line to get some free dessert.
Travel perks are everywhere as long as you know where to look for one. You can also get a top travel credit card to get extra points that can be used for discounts and promos when available. So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and have a joyful journey this 2019.
Traveling during school breaks can be challenging. You’ll be greeted with overcrowded terminals or airports, with lots of people fighting for those vacation days. This is a challenge that can be a bit hard to get through, especially if you’re in the school system since you are bounded with special conditions and rules that you have to follow.
But at the end of the day, that’s the system. But don’t worry, there are still plenty of ways to manage your desire to travel with the intrusion of school. Being a school teacher and a traveler at the same time needs balance. Don’t let your job stop you from seeking adventure throughout the world.
Not only that, but you should also bring your child too. But wait, your kids are still in school so how can you bring them to your travel escapades? There are lots of rules and regulations when it comes to education and you are concerned about your child falling behind in their lectures. But by following the tips below, you will know how to balance school and travel without letting your child fall behind in their classes.
Know the Rules
- Before anything else, it’s important to know the school rules of your country before taking your kids on vacation with you. Being aware of the rules will help you plan your travel more effectively and see when is the best time to take your kids with you.
Understand Your Child’s Learning Level
- Have a child that still struggles at school? maybe it’s still not time to take them to your travel escapades. Unless if they say that they need to unwind or something to exercise their brains out. But if your child is a fast learner, then you can able to let them join on your vacation. Just don’t let them be stressed out while traveling, they still have to catch up lots of lectures when they get home.
Have a Talk with the Teacher or Principal
- Absent kids mean funding issues for teachers. To let your kid’s teacher calm down, have a talk with them and explain why you need to travel with your kids. Ask if how many schoolwork does your kid need to catch up when he/she is absent. Or better yet, suggest something educational like letting your child make a report about his/her travel experience he/she can share with the class.
Let Your Trips Be Educational
- Let your travels be an opportunity for your kids to increase their knowledge about the world. Make your trips educational like taking them to museums, local culture, and historic places, live reenactments, etc. For example, if your kid has an assignment about the revolutionary war in school, take them to the Greater Williamsburg area or Boston so they can witness live interactive museums of that era.
Do Your Children’s Schoolwork
- This will make their life easier once they get back at school. There’s nothing wrong at doing their work as long as you’re willing to do so. Your kids are probably stressed and drained during the vacation so it’s your job to do something that they’ll be glad to.
Add On Days to Term Breaks or Weekends
- Traveling during school breaks can be expensive, but it can balance the whole school thing. Take advantage of school breaks to add extra days to your vacation with your kids. If there’s a long weekend ahead, book your flights that will exactly make use of the upcoming long weekend.
Travel While They’re Still Young
- The school curriculum gets more intense and harder as your children get older. So if your kid is still in grade school, grab this opportunity to take them with your travels.
Opt for Homeschooling/Roadschooling if Possible
- Homeschooling or roadschooling gives your kids more freedom to learn whenever or wherever they want since it’s not tied down to traditional school learning hours. This means that you can travel with your kids whenever you want since you don’t have to worry about keeping track of schedules.
If you think that traveling is bad for your children especially in their younger years, in reality, it’s not. Traveling can, in fact, increase their knowledge about the world around them and will help them learn more about themselves. The way they interact with the world is one thing that will shape them as a person as they grow older. Travel helps your children unleash their creative side, which allows them to use their imagination and make decisions to survive and thrive in this world. With that being said, it will help them achieve more not just in school, but also in life.
Traveling while following a restrictive diet can be difficult especially for vegan people. Because wherever you go, you’ll be bombarded with meat and seafood cuisine in every blink of an eye. But for vegans out there, worry no more because you’ve come to the right place. Listed below are twelve vegan-friendly travel destinations you’ll surely love to visit. Let’s dive in!
- If you happen to stumble upon Scotland, don’t forget to visit cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow. These cities are known for their famous nachos to their mouthwatering gelato-topped waffles.
New York City
- The Big Apple is famous for its dairy-heavy products, but that doesn’t mean that vegans can’t enjoy traveling here. New York is also equipped with some flavorful veggie cuisine as well. For first-timers in New York City, check out Blossom or Avant Garden, they have fine dining options with a menu made with vegans in mind.
- India is also known for its delicious vegan food. Cuisines such as vegetable curries, roti bread, masala dosa, vegetable biryani, aloo puri, and momos are just one of the few of their veggie-filled products. Keep in mind that cows are sacred in India, which is why dairy have a vital role in the Indian diet. If you want to have your food completely meat-free, don’t hesitate to ask the chef to use oil as an alternative while cooking your meal. When shopping at supermarkets or grocery stores, check the label to see if the product is made for vegetarians.
- In case you didn’t know, almost all of your vegan dishes originated from the Middle East. Pita bread, hummus, falafel, and sambusak just to name a few are this country’s specialty. Tel Aviv, a city in the Middle East, is also deemed as the vegan capital of the world. The city also has a “World’s Largest Vegan Festival” that offers vegan cuisine and food tours that you’ll surely enjoy.
- Traveling into Taiwan and you will find that being vegan is grounded in their culture, especially Buddhism and Taoism. So if you visit their restaurants, you’ll find plenty of vegan dishes on their menu. Food also come in large portions which is really a bang for your buck.
- San Francisco, LA, and San Diego have restaurants filled with vegan options. Not only that, but they also had 160 restaurants that are exclusive for vegan people. This state is filled with people such as animal-rights activities and health-conscious. So for vegans, this place will feel like home for you.
- Thailand chefs often use coconut milk for their creamy recipes. Instead of meat, they use tofu or veggies so that vegans can enjoy whatever meal they have in store. Don’t forget to try out their authentic coconut soup, spring rolls smothered in peanut sauce, and stir-fry.
Mexico City, Mexico
- If food trip comes into mind, then Mexico is just the place for that. Although they often hide lard and dairy, if you want Mexican food that’s entirely vegan? Then this place is worthy for a vacation.
- Colorful veggie meals you want? Then say hello to Bali, Indonesia. Vegan dishes in Bali are full of color and almost too pretty to eat. Their creativity when it comes to preparing dishes never fails to amaze.
- Fans of Gordon Ramsey will know that he opened up a pizzeria in London that serves vegan pizza. Not only that, there are so many vegan restaurants to choose from that you can sight around every corner. Want to try fancy vegan dining in London? Don’t forget to visit the VanillaBlack dinner where they offer entirely meat-free and dairy-free meals paired with wine and appetizers.
- Paris isn’t actually known to have vegan dishes, but there are some of their famous cuisines with vegan versions of it. Croissants, coffee cakes, and crème brûlée all have vegan versions that you’ll surely love.
- Portland is often considered as the vegan capital of the USA. This is because they offer high-quality vegan meals that can be found in every corner of the city, strip clubs are no exception. It’s like almost all of their eateries and diners serves plant-based meals that you don’t even know where to start because there are just so many of them to choose from.
Planning to spend your vacation in Switzerland? Then this article is for you. Switzerland is the home of one of the most scenic mountain ranges in the world, the Alps. It’s the perfect place to venture the great outdoors as its full of lakes, waterfalls, and other outdoor activities whatever the season.
Switzerland is also full of exquisitely eye candy towns that showcases the Swiss architecture and stunning views no other cities can beat. With that being said, here are the top ten beautiful places to visit in Switzerland.
- This place is located at the Northeastern part of Switzerland just at the foot of the Alps. Appenzell is a rural town that’s surrounded by beautiful hills. The town’s total population is about 7000 and cars are out of sight so you have to use bicycles to roam around or just walk by foot. Don’t forget to visit the Appenzell museum or have a taste of their locally-produced Appenzell cheese your taste buds will surely love.
- For nature loves out there, this town is the perfect place just for you. Mountains are seen all over the place over the village itself. Exploring more in the area and you’ll find lush meadows, stunning valleys, and waterfalls that are really pleasing to the eyes. You can also rent a helicopter to have a bird’s eye view of the whole town and witness its overall beauty.
- The Kandersteg is a resort village in the Alps. If you enjoy taking a stroll outdoors, then this town is just the place for you. This town is full of lakes, the glacier-fed Lake Oeschinensee and Lake Blausee is a must see just to name a few.
- Enjoy hiking? Iseltwald is the town for you. This town is one of the most popular hiking spots because it’s filled with lots of hiking trails within the region. Apart from that, there are also water-based activities such as fishing. The town has several traditional-style hotels, a castle, an old harbor, and an island that’s located just offshore.
- If you traveled to Switzerland for skiing purposes, then look no other than Zermatt. The town has 54 mountain railways and chairlifts. Want to unwind after skiing? There are lots of spas, massage centers, restaurants, and cable cars scattered around the place. There are no cars in this town, so you have to get around the area on foot.
- Grindelwald is a village that also acts like a mountain resort that attracts adventurers such as skiers, rock climbers, and hikers alike. Outdoor activities include cliff walking, Eiger trail hiking, and exploring the great Gletscherschlucht Ravine. The village is small and can be explored by foot so be prepared.
- Take a dive down history by visiting Sion, an ancient city that’s full of historic places and locally made wine. Don’t forget to check the Old town if you stumble upon this destination. But not only that, but there are also other activities that you can do as well such as skiing, hiking, visiting the music festival, and checking out the basilica inside Valere Castle.
- Located at Italy’s Northern Border, Soglio is a town full of cobblestone streets, stunning castles, exquisite mountain views, and unbridled nature. The town can be seen on the edge of the mountainside and offers scenic views of the nearby mountains surrounding it. Hiking lovers will surely love this place thanks to its atmospheric ambiance and eye candy sights to see.
- Another resort town that’s located in the Alps is Wengen. From the town, you’ll get fabulous views of the Alps and other mountains in the background such as the Eiger, Jungfrau, and Monch. The best way to get to this town is to take the mountain railway from Lauterbrunnen.
- This village is located near the second tallest waterfall in the whole of Switzerland. In this town, you’ll find traditional chalets and lots of hiking trails and other wellness options. Wellness options include spa houses, multi-sensory showers, footbaths, saunas, and lots of mineral springs to soothe your mind and soul.
Struggling to find the internet while traveling? Then look no further than this article. It can be a bit of a challenge to stay connected online when you’re on the road. But luckily, these simple tips will help you out to keep you in touch with your friends, family, and your social life while traveling. So what are you waiting for? Continue reading down below.
Use an International Wi-Fi Hotspot
- An international pocket Wi-Fi works wherever you are around the world and saves you hassle from setting it up. A reliable pocket Wi-Fi like “Vision Global Wi-Fi” allows you to easily connect to the internet wherever you go.
Why Wi-Fi hotspots Are Better
- A Wi-Fi hotspot saves you time and also cash from roaming charges from carrier mobile data. Another advantage of Wi-Fi hotspots is that it’s flexible when it comes to signal. Mobile data, on the other hand, struggles to find a signal depending on the area you are in.
Renting a Wi-Fi Hotspot
- If you want to rent a pocket Wi-Fi hotspot for your travel needs, simply go to your trusted service provider and choose a plan that suits you. It’s better to apply for the plan a week prior to your trip so that everything will be settled as early as possible.
Optimizing Your E-Mail
- E-Mail can take a huge chunk out of your Wi-Fi usage if you didn’t optimize it. To optimize your e-mail, limit the downloads of your past e-mails for documents, images, etc. Another tip: Turn off your e-mail notifications especially if you’re not going to read them in the first place. Turning it off will save you more Wi-Fi data.
Limit Multimedia Viewing
- Streaming videos via YouTube or Netflix can take up a lot of bandwidth. Get the most out of your pocket Wi-Fi data plan by limiting your multimedia usage and stick to viewing text-based content or use Facebook’s free data mode when browsing.
Turn Off Unimportant Background Apps
- From the word “background”, it means it’s running even when the phone is locked, which uses Wi-Fi bandwidth and also battery life. Even if you close your apps after using, your apps are still running in the background to provide you updates. So before anything else, go to your phone’s setting and limit the use of background apps by setting restrictions.
Packing your essentials is the most important part when going on a skiing trip. It might be a bit stressful and time-consuming for some, but the afterthought will give you benefits. Keep in mind that winter clothes are bulky and can add weight to your bag. But prioritizing functionality and comfort is essential for a safe skiing trip.
Before you begin, knowing your destination is the first thing you should do. Are you heading to a skiing resort full of shops where you can just buy things just in case you forgot them at home? Or will you be going to an isolated skiing destination with limited resources? Either way, preparing should be your top priority wherever the destination you’re heading to. So what are we waiting for? Here are ski essentials that you should definitely bring with you.
- No, we are not talking about normal rain jackets here, we’re talking about winter jackets that fit you well for your skiing adventure. If you don’t have one, it’s better to spend money on it to keep you warm from the cold. Check if it is both waterproof and wind resistant before buying too.
- Just like your jacket, it’s important to wear a bottom that will keep you warm and dry throughout your adventure. So don’t forget to bring ski pants with you or invest in good quality ski pants in case you don’t have one.
- In snowy areas, a good pair of snow boots is necessary to keep your feet warm. Don’t forget to check if it is waterproof before buying one. Waterproof boots are ideal to keep you from slipping on icy areas.
Gloves & Beanie
- Cover yourself by bringing gloves and beanie with you. High-quality gloves will keep your hands warm while wearing a beanie will protect your hair from being wet from the snow. For beanies, bring a lighter one that will fit into your ski helmet and another thicker beanie for non-ski activities.
- Wear a base layer that fights right into your body. Wear one that’s lightweight and moisture wicking especially one that is made from merino wool. Depending on how long your skiing vacation is, it’s highly recommended to bring 2-3 base layer sets.
- Bring a fleece jacket, a long sleeve sweatshirt, or a wool sweater. Use them to act as a mid-layer between your base and jacket.
- Ski Goggles/Sunglasses
- Protect your eyes by bringing reliable ski goggles with you. The sun can really blind your eyes especially when you’re on the top of a slope. Anti-Fog ski goggles are highly recommended too which can come in handy in foggy areas.
- A neck warmer are sleeker and more reliable compared to scarves. Scarves are bulky and tend to whip around like they have a mind on their own. Neck warmers stay in place and are safer to wear overall.
- If gloves aren’t enough, a hand warmer will do the trick to keep your hands from going numb because of the cold.
- Sounds unusual for winter right? But bringing a sunscreen is definitely a must not just for beaches, but also for your winter skiing adventures. Since you will be covering yourself the entire time, you will only be applying sunscreen on your face to protect it from the heat of the sun.
- Of course, there’s nothing better than having a dip to the pool on the resort you’re staying in after a whole day of skiing fun. So don’t forget to bring a swimsuit with you, and also a pair of flip flops.
- Because smartphones are not ideal to record all the action of your skiing adventure, GoPro is here to save the day. A GoPro is lightweight, handy, and can be mounted to almost anywhere such as on your helmet or skiing pole.
The weather can be sometimes confusing. What looks sunny today can become rainy a few moments later. How much more when we travel and the climates start to act like this. One example of this situation is when your home country is warm and then the destination you’re traveling is cold.
But since you’re here on this article, then you’ve come to the right place. Listed below are nine simple steps on how to get ready for unpredictable weather travel. Let’s take a look at them down below.
- Choosing the right fabric is the key to keep yourself warm. However, you must choose the right fabric to bring. Don’t pack bulky fabrics is this can only take up much-needed space. Pack something light instead such as an airy dress or a maxi skirt. When it comes to cold climates, opt for light long sleeves that are made from merino wool. This will give maximum warmth compared to bulky and thick sweaters. Keep in mind that quality over quantity is better, so pack light and good quality clothes.
- Light and airy clothing that dries off easily is ideal for warmer climates. Choose clothing that you can mix and match depending on the weather. For example, you can wear leggings and long sleeve tops under shorts and dresses. This will also come in handy when you’re traveling to conservative areas where showing too much skin is not advisable.
- Packing for cold weather can be daunting especially if you don’t want to bring heavy luggage with you. There’s a huge difference between staying at home or spending time outdoors during colder climates. Because when you’re traveling, you’ll be spending a lot of time outdoors, so bringing clothes that will keep you warm is important. Lightweight clothing is ideal if you don’t want to carry heavy luggage with you. Wear leggings or tights underneath your pants to provide yourself some extra warmth. Still not enough? Add a few extra layers until you feel warm. Also, don’t forget to wear winter essentials too such as gloves, scarves, and a beanie.
- As we said earlier, packing for multi-season trips can be a bit of a challenge. So it’s important to pack something that coordinates depending on the season. Invest in an interchangeable wardrobe capsule that you can take you from cold to hot with ease.
- When it comes to packing shoes, just bring one that matches to your clothing and the weather. Overpacking shoes can only add weight to your luggage. If you want to bring boots, Ankle boots are the way to go because they take up less space compared to tall boots.
- It’s always ideal to check for weather updates before you fly. This gives you a chance to see how many days will you be dealing with multi-seasonal weather during the trip.
- Can’t seem to figure out how to fit all your things inside your luggage? Use a reliable luggage organizer. When it comes to choosing a suitcase, choose one that’s durable and can withstand whatever weight is put into it. Backpacks are also ideal too if carrying roll-on luggage is not your thing.
- Travelers tend to bring lots of toiletries that they don’t actually use. So if you want to pack light, follow these five steps to downsize your toiletries for your trip:
- Opt for combined items: Shampoos or conditioners usually come in 2 or 3-in-1 packages. Body cleansers can also act as a shaving gel, and there are brushes that have a mirror attached on its back for easier convenience.
- Purchase empty containers: To be used later on for your toiletry needs. Don’t choose one that is “travel sized” because you’ll probably need more than that later on.
- Bring the basics: Don’t bring too much of your skincare products as you only have to travel for a few days or so. Bring the basics only or just purchase one when you get to your destination.
- Solid over liquids: Liquid beauty products tend to spill when not being placed correctly, so opt on bringing solid versions of it so it won’t create a mess inside your luggage.
- Choose the right toiletry bag: Of course, you don’t have to cram all your toiletries inside your luggage. A separate bag is needed to keep them all into one place.
- Safety should be your top priority when it comes to traveling. Keep your cash and any kinds of important belongings out of sight. Bring a photocopy of your ID and other documents when you’re roaming around at night and leave the real one on your hotel room so it won’t be stolen.
No place is safe for travelers these days. With just a blink of an eye, you’ll be surprised that your purse has been stolen, or your phone has suddenly disappeared from your pocket. Snatching and pickpocketing are rampant especially in places where tourists are skimped into one place.
Thieves/pickpockets usually target people with jobs since their bags are filled with valuable and expensive stuff. Not paying close attention to your belongings and sooner or later your wallet is gone, and the last thing you’ll find is yourself being indignant for the thing that already happened. You’ll be pissed that you have to buy another phone or camera because you’re not being careful in the first place.
Keep in mind that this type of crime is harmless and completely avoidable. Just relax, have fun, and double your guard the next time you travel. Here are a few important tips to help you out.
Always Be Prepared
- Before you fly, there are some things that you should do to minimize the chances of losing your items. Create photocopies of your important documents. Such documents include passports, rail pass, itinerary, prescriptions, and among others. Give backups of these copies to your loved ones at home just in case you lose your own copy while you’re away.
- Make sure that your gadgets have theft insurance. Such of these include a camera, tablet, smartphones, smartwatches, and more. Take a picture of all of your gadgets and leave them at home just in case the insurance center will ask for one. While traveling, don’t forget to backup all your pics and vids by using cloud services such as Google Drive or OneDrive.
- Instead of traveling fearfully, how about traveling carefully? Stay alert to your surroundings and make sure that your belongings are secured. Here’s some important advice for you:
- Instead of putting your money inside your bag, put them inside a money belt that you can wear around your waist. Not just your cash, you can also put your other important belongings here as well.
- All your expensive gear must be left inside your hotel room. Don’t expose them outside where thieves can easily see and snatch them. Some hotels also have a safe in their rooms if you want extra protection.
- Whenever you travel, you must always be mindful of your things. Some travelers tend to lose their items more frequently instead of being stolen. So every time you go outside even for just a short walk, take your time to check your belongings. When you unpack your things, don’t put them into odd places inside the room. If you’re inside a diner or a café, don’t put your phone or laptop on the table as it can be easily snatched. Make it a habit to be careful about your important belongings.
- Your bag is like a thief’s treasure chest so you must secure it wherever you go. If you’re outside, loop a strap to your bag around your arm, leg, or chair leg when sitting down. If you’re sleeping inside the bus, train, or anywhere in public, clip or fasten your bag to the seat or even yourself. Some bags came with zip lockers which can come in useful for extra security. If your bag doesn’t have one, you can use a twist-tie or paper clip to keep your bag zipped tight.
- If ever you’re caught up in a crowd or commotion, always find a way to stay clear out of it. Situations like these are perfect spots for pickpockets and thieves to steal from you. In train stations, be alert especially upon arrival. Keep your luggage always on hand and don’t leave your bag unattended when you fall in line. All your valuables must be kept inside your money belt for extra protection. When you’re inside the train, be alert whenever there are stops. Thieves can easily steal from you especially when people are rushing towards the exit. Other places where thieves and pickpockets can hunt are subways or bus stops. Whenever you stumble upon these places, always keep physical contact with your bag by wearing it around your chest. Be careful when entering turnstiles, a thief might sneak behind you and run off with your bag, leaving you stuck behind the turnstile which gives them a chance to run away. These types of scenarios aren’t meant to scare you, but to make you prepared and be alert to prevent your belongings from being stolen.
If you want to get the best out of your purchase, bargaining with merchants is the best way to go. Whenever you travel, fighting for prices at flea markets, souvenir shops, and street vendors is an easy task to do. Unless you’re haggling inside a shopping mall or modern stores, which is not acceptable. Keep in mind that bargaining/haggling is only applicable to goods, not on food sold at stands or other outdoor markets. With that being said, here are a few tips to help you how to be an effective haggler.
Trigger the Merchant to Make the First Move
- If you found an item that you want to take home with you, try saying “It’s a bit too pricey”. When you do, the merchant will make the first move to bargain the price. This is the perfect opportunity to haggle to make the price even lower.
Find Out How Much the Locals Pay
- Merchants tend to overprice their items when tourist approaches their stores. This is because they think that outsiders are wealthier compared to the locals. If you stumble upon a store and see if the prices aren’t marked, assume that there is a double price standard: An expensive one for you and a cheaper one for the locals. If you have a friend that lives on the destination you’re traveling on, let him/her help you to get the best bargain as possible.
Check if The Item is Worth Your Money
- Fixed prices are like an illusion that can distort the item’s true worth. Merchants are smart and you should be smarter. For example, if you think that you’re doing great by cutting down the price for about 50%, the merchant doubles the price and you happily paid for it without thinking about it. Before finding out the price, determine if the item is worth for you so nothing will be wasted on every single cash you paid.
Determine the Lowest Price as Possible
- Merchants don’t want to lose their sale. If you saw an item but it didn’t match with the price you had in mind, then walk away. However, if the merchant offers you the lowest last-minute price as soon as you turn your head to another store, then go for it. Important tip: Huge price drops occurs at the end of the day where the merchants are about to pack up.
Practice Your Emotions
- Don’t give a happy face whenever you haggle. Merchants will think that you’re too obsessed with the item and you’re willing to pay how much money you had in there. Keep a straight face while dealing with the price to convince them that you want something lower than what they have offered.
- Merchants like to listen, and if you trick them by using your knowledge about an item. They’re likely to lower the price since you know “about” everything of that particular item. Of course, you have to show “real” knowledge instead of just faking it.
- Bulk Dealing
- Check if the merchant will give a better price if you buy items in bulk. The more they think they can sell, the more flexible they become.
Pay Cash Instead of Credit Cards
- There are stalls that accept credit cards as a method of payment especially those merchants that sells pricier and more valuable goods. But if you pay by cash, these merchants will be happy to make a deal with you since they won’t lose any profit being taken by the bank from credit-card fees.
Show them the Money
- Only let out the amount of cash you’re willing to pay for. Convince them that this is “all you have” and there’s nothing more. Merchants will be tempted to just make a deal with the amount of cash you have on hand and just say “oh well”.
- Bargaining/Haggling takes time, effort, and also respect. Make sure you are dealing with someone that is willing to lower their prices down. Don’t show too much power when haggling. Be humble and learn how to respect.
Leave If It’s Time to Leave
- If the deal doesn’t get any better, then leave. Don’t waste your time bargaining with something that the merchant won’t even accept. Remember, some of them are skilled businesspeople and they know how to close or accept every deal.