Amsterdam Cheap Travel Guide… Enjoy It!

When you opt for a cheap travel to Europe, the city of Amsterdam should be your best choice. The city offers cheap relatively compared to most European cities but not sacrificing the quality of the trip.

The city…

Amsterdam is undoubtedly a beautiful city. No wander it is the fourth most visited cities in the region just after Paris, Rome, and London. Most of the population speaks either French or German or both. The people also can speak English and Dutch as well. The area is relatively flat. You cannot find slopes and hills unlike other European cities. If you want to roam Amsterdam by foot, it is very conducive for hiking. This would save you from the trouble of renting a car or hiring a taxicab to transport you within the city. And since Amsterdam has lots of sights to offer, hiking would be fill up the day while spending some time on different attractions the city has to offer.

If you don’t feel the idea of hiking, Amsterdam provides not only cheap but free transportation. White-bikes are located in abundance in the city. In fact there are over 700,000 bikes waiting for you. You can hop on one of these communal bikes at one place then drop it off on the other. They are stationed in different point of the city so you won’t get a hard to locate one.

Not into biking and hiking but still opting for cheap Amsterdam vacation? You can always ride any of the public transportation within the city. Amsterdam offers some of the best train, bus, and tram systems in Europe. They are cheap and the service is extremely good.

The attraction…

Amsterdam is lined with several museums and monuments often time just a shot away from one another. To be exact, Amsterdam has 42 museums and almost 7,000 monuments within its limits. And if you want to visit them without confusion, the city has prepared 7 waking routes, marked especially for you.

You can see the works of Hals, Vermeer, Rembrandt, and several other world-renowned artists in Amsterdam’s most famous museum- the Rijks museum. A Van Gogh admirer? Vincent Van Gogh has his own museum located near Rijks. For a more contemporary and modern pictures, paintings, and pottery, you can visit Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art. For a closer feel of Amsterdam during the 1600s, you can visit the Museum Willet-Holthuysen that is considered World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

When you visit during summer (July-August), expect to see bed of Tulips along with other Holland’s pride- narcissus, daffodils, and other flowers.

Canal attraction is superb. During summer, you can tour the city by boat. The city’s canal stretches up to 100KM giving you an alternative way to see the city. During winter, the same canal freezes and transforms into a sporting site where skating events take place.

The rates…

Amsterdam is not a typical European city where you have to spend so much to survive. It does not charge premium rates like any other European cities. You can stay at one of the hostels in Amsterdam under $70. Dining is also very affordable in the city. You can survive a decent meal for under $15. Transportation is also cheap. Tram pass could be purchase at around $5 for unlimited ride for the day.

Picturesque view and rich culture and history give every reason to travel to Amsterdam. And with prices are relatively cheap, you surely would enjoy your stay at Amsterdam.

A Step-By-Step Guide To Cuban Salsa

Dance has been an important part of rituals, celebrations and entertainment since before the birth of human civilization. In the beginning, before we had written language to record things, the purpose of dance was often to tell stories and to pass them down to future generations.

The story of dancing in Cuba

In Cuba, as in ancient times, dance tells its own story. The passion and energy of Cuban dance reveals the strength and conviction of the Cuban people, determined to enjoy life despite ‘la lucha’ (the struggle) of living in a strictly regulated country where the average monthly wage comes in at around 400 pesos – less than £10.

The richness of Cuban music and dancing also tells the story of Cuba’s melting pot of cultures. From the high-stepping flamenco brought by the Spanish settlers in the 15th century to the frenzied tribal dances of the West African slaves, dancing is in the blood of the Cuban people.

From the teenage girl in denim shorts to the cigar-seller on the street corner, Cubans are given to break into spontaneous dance steps. Furthermore, the people dancing on the streets of Havana are likely to be just as good as the professionals, because in Cuba dancing is simply a way of life.

The variety of Cuban dances

Cuba boasts a huge range of dances including classical ballet, contemporary, flamenco and folk dancing. But it is the partnered routines that appeared in Havana dancehalls between the 1920s and the 1950s – Salsa, rumba, mambo and cha-cha-cha – that can be seen in every Cuban bar, club and street. Of these, Salsa is the most popular dance internationally.

Since the name ‘Salsa’ (it’s Spanish for ‘sauce’) was coined, Salsa dancing has exploded in popularity in Latin America and across the world. Salsa dancing classes are now hugely popular but to really get into the swing of it a Salsa holiday in Cuba itself is a must.

Tips for Cuban Salsa dancing

If you do take yourself on a Cuban holiday, you’ll have the unique experience of watching Cubans Salsa dancing. It sometimes appears that by some genetic aberration they have been born with super flexible joints, defying physics to carry out all the complex manoeuvres they have integrated into the dancing. Their remarkable twisting body movements and natural sense of rhythm will dazzle you.

If you have the right technique, Cuban Salsa is easier to learn than many other forms of dance. The basic footwork is a fairly simple walking motion, pausing every fourth beat, and there are some six basic steps you can follow to make sure you’re on the right tracks.

1 Relax

To dance Cuban Salsa well it is important not to rush, but to relax into the steps. Movements should be precise and deliberate in addition to being flowing and smooth.

2 Walk with purpose

Salsa dancing involves a continual circular motion. Couples walk around each other with an imaginary axis between them. This makes turns look smooth and effortless. Walking gives time to untangle your arms after each turn.

3 Have confidence in your lead

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The leader (usually the man) should have constant tension in his arms, while his hands guide his Salsa dancing partner around the floor. There is no need to clamp onto each other’s hands, only to use the right amount of tension to provide a leading signal.

4 Be flexible when following

In order to follow well, ladies should try to match the tension of their partner. The exception to this is when arms need to be relaxed and flexible to complete arm-twisting Salsa moves without injury!

5 Keep balanced when you spin

The key to all the spectacular spins in Salsa is not to lose your balance. One way to do it is by spotting while you spin – focusing on one spot at each turn – an age-old dance technique.

6 Use your body

In Salsa dancing, ladies should make use of their body and be sensual, playful and creative. This can involve some creative arm movements, going with what feels right and basically showing off a bit. Enjoy!

A Romantic Weekend Getaway To Kims Beach Hideaway Luxury Resort In NSW

If you are looking for an Australian Luxury Vacation, or even just a romantic weekend getaway, then Kims Beach Hideaway Luxury Resort only about 90 minutes north of Sydney is the answer. Kims is a collection of luxurious chalets on the beach in Toowoon Bay What a beautiful place Kims is, right on the beach surrounded by pine trees, and lush terraced gardens.

It is so quiet and peaceful, just the sound of breaking waves on the beach, this really is a beach retreat.

There really isn’t much to do here, which is perfect for a romantic weekend getaway, and as each of the beach facing chalets, and it would be fair to say that is the majority of them, has direct access to the beach.

The beach itself is beautiful with fine white sand, ideal for swimming.

The rate here includes all meals, and the meals are all buffet, but of the very highest quality. If you like seafood, they have incredibly fresh seafood, and if you like meat, then there is plenty for carnivores to drool over. The salads are fresh and original, and there is a quite superb cheeseboard if you have any room left.

The range of desserts is awesome, especially at lunchtime.

The chalets themselves are somehow old fashioned, but superbly appointed for 21st century living. There was just a suggestion of ‘olde worlde’ kind of rustic, with warm colours. They are an absolutely perfect answer for a romantic weekend break.

You could reserve a spa bungalow with king sized bed, louvered windows to let in the cooling breeze, and your own veranda and balcony with a Jacuzzi. Privacy and relaxation is what Kims is all about.
The granite tile bathroom is large and there is a double shower with massaging double shower heads.
There is a CD player, Television, and complimentary DVD’s available from reception.

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To cap it all you will have a library full of books, and complimentary magazines.

It is fair to say that as an Australian Luxury vacation or a romantic weekend getaway, this isn’t a cheap option but Kims Beach Hideaway is worth every penny.

A Guide To Rucksack Packing

Whatever you plans or your destination it is important to know the art of rucksack packing; this will make you rucksack more comfortable to carry and will help to ensure that the items needed first are not at the bottom!! Just because you can fit everything into your rucksack does not mean that you need to actually take everything on your trip. If your idea of rucksack packing is to pack the kitchen sink, at least make sure that you do it well! Never the less, it would be a good idea to forget your kitchen sink and spend some time imagining your trip and working out exactly what you might need.

Never put anything in your rucksack until you have chosen all the items you would like to take. Lay all the desired contents of your rucksack in a clear space and review if they are necessary or if they are more of the ‘wish list’ category. The art of rucksack packing includes knowing what to pack. Obviously, waterproofs spare clothing, food and snacks are fairly essential – books for late night reading, you will probably never open as you will be tired from fresh air and collapse happily into bed without opening a book, a book which may have taken up valuable space and also be heavy to carry. Even though your rucksack seems huge in the shop, once home you will find that it easily fills up – hence the importance of efficient rucksack packing.

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To master the art of rucksack packing you do not need a diploma, but a clear head and plenty of common sense will get you through. Put the heaviest items at the bottom – you need to maintain a good center of balance. The items should get lighter as they get higher up the rucksack. Remember that some small soft items should be kept to use as padding so that no harder items will be uncomfortably against you back, the last thing that you want is a corner jabbing into your back. If you have several hard items, then it is a good idea to flat fold some spare clothes between them to stop any clattering or irritating movement between them. Remember, that being good at rucksack packing means it should be comfortable as well as fitting all the necessary items in!

Most rucksacks have an outer easily accessible section, ensure that this contains items you may need en route; this pocket should also be left with enough space to put the last minute items in, such as a water bottle and keys.

Our final advice on rucksack packing is to remember that your rucksack might not be as resistant to the weather as one would hope. Your rucksack is unlikely to be completely waterproof (whatever the manufacturers description), so when you do your rucksack packing do not put all spare clothes around the outside, thinking them to be more easily accessible, because you may find that if caught in a storm, all your spare clothing might become damp!

The art of rucksack packing is comfort and efficiency – enjoy your trip.

American Standards and European Culture: How to Avoid a Disappointing Vacation Experience While Traveling in Europe

Planning a vacation to Europe? No doubt you have certain expectations about your upcoming journey.

Perhaps you’re the kind of person who expects to spend your days admiring amazing architecture and prowling world-famous museums for masterpieces. Or maybe you’re going to Europe to meet interesting people, relax on the beach until the sun goes down, and dance the night away in a local club. Regardless of your European vacation priorities, you certainly expect it to be wonderful!

But stop a moment. Have you thought about your cultural expectations?

Many European vacationers plan their activities and accommodations with the assumption that everything else will be “like America.” If so, think again! Just as Europe and the US are different in landscape, weather, and history, they are also very different culturally. Europeans and Americans have different ideas about manners, time, personal space, personal property maintenance, and language.

So for anyone planning a vacation to Europe, here are a few “cross cultural conflict” areas that Americans traveling in Europe often encounter. Making yourself aware of these differences can help you have a fun, enjoyable, and even educational European vacation that is free of cultural misunderstandings!

Personal Space

Take a glance at a map of the world. Which is smaller: the US or Europe? That’s right– Europe. But there are still a lot of people there, which means they’ve gotten used to smaller spaces!

American standards of living are very high. We’re used to king size beds and bathrooms that can accommodate several people at a time.

But unless you’re staying in a massive French chateau or Italian villa, be prepared for spaces to be smaller than you’re used to. Bedrooms and bathrooms will be more compact, as will bed sizes. Single and double beds alike will be narrower. Kitchens won’t be able to accommodate your entire family!

So consider this an opportunity to get closer to your traveling companions. Think of sharing a bathroom in Italy as an exercise in cooperation. Get cozy with your spouse in that French double bed. Be willing to laugh as you adjust. Get creative and have fun!


A common misperception of Europeans is that they are “rude.” Of course, they think the same thing about us!

Remember when you’re traveling in Europe that rudeness is largely a cultural perception. Someone who seems blunt and nosey may be expressing friendship and concern for your well-being. A waiter who tells you what to order may be trying to help, since you are unfamiliar with the language. Differences in “personal space” mean that someone who cuts in front of you may not even understand that you were in line!

Also, subjects which are taboo in your community may be freely discussed elsewhere, and vice versa. In the US, we consider it incredibly rude to comment on a person’s weight. This isn’t true everywhere in the world!

So, when traveling in Europe, keep a firm grip on your temper. A good way to achieve this is to give everyone else the benefit of the doubt. Just make the choice not to get angry. If you can roll with the punches, you’ll enjoy your vacation more– and you’ll be a better traveling companion.


I have to admit that I get impatient if I have to wait longer than fifteen minutes at a restaurant in the US. After the food comes, I can be out the door in half an hour!

In Italy, however, a dinner filled with conversation, laughter, and great food can last two hours! I smile when I hear other Americans asking why the food hasn’t arrived yet. Unbeknownst to them, the waiters are offering them the opportunity to savor the meal.

Likewise, shops and businesses in Spain close for an afternoon siesta. In the UK, the handyman may want to chat with you before repairing that pipe.

Most Europeans do not share the American compulsion to “save time” by doing everything quickly. So when you vacation in Europe, leave your watch behind. After all, this is a vacation!


I often hear complaints, especially from those who rent a villa or apartment, about the quality of the furnishings and amenities in Europe. I’d be a millionaire if I had a dime for every time I heard someone say “The furniture was old!” or “The bathroom pipes need to be replaced.”

In today’s society, we expect things to look like new, feel like new, and behave like new. If it doesn’t, we throw it away.

But think of anyone who grew up during the depression. My grandfather kept rows of old coffee cans filled with spare nails and bits of wire. He sat in the same chair every night until he died. Nothing was wasted, and nothing was thrown away if it could be fixed.

So if the furniture looks a little worn, or if the sink clogs, think before you complain. Is the quality due to neglect and disrepair, or is it the result of a careful, conscientious effort not to put anything to waste?

Treat this as an educational experience; you might even learn from a more conservative lifestyle.


As an American, I am often jealous of Europeans who pick up languages like you’d pick up a bottle of milk at the store. For me, it’s an uphill battle all the way!

Since learning three or four languages is neither a cultural necessity nor a scholastic requirement in our country, many Americans feel like me. And yet some Americans still assume that everyone in Europe should speak English!

In the same way that you or I would resent a French tourist who expected everyone in the US to speak French, Europeans are often annoyed by Americans who have this mentality.

While you probably can’t learn a new language before your vacation, you can learn some helpful phrases. This is considered courteous, and is guaranteed to get more friendly responses. When you try to use their language, Italians or French who might have feigned ignorance will usually help you with your pronunciation– and then converse with you in English!

The Right Attitude

Lastly, remember that the standards and the customs you find while traveling in Europe are not wrong. They’re just different. If you travel with the right attitude, you will have a richer, more authentic, and even eye-opening experience. Who knows? Your European vacation may change the way you see the world.

5 Ways To Choose The Best Travel Insurance For Your Holiday

Travel insurance is one of those areas that mean nothing to you until you decide to hit the road – or the air – then suddenly every ad is for travel insurance and everywhere you look another company is touting for your business. So how do you choose the best insurance company and the best travel insurance for your unique travelling needs?

5 Points To Consider

1.The cost of the policy could be more than what you pay

When reviewing the policy options never start with the price first. As with most things in life you get what you pay for and while you want to be sure to get the best value for your money, this does not necessarily mean the cheapest price. Comprehensive cover that delivers and supports in time of need is what you should be looking for.

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2.What back up do you receive in an emergency?

Are you being sent on your world tour with a 9 to 5 Monday to Friday contact number or are you provided with fully comprehensive numbers providing 24/7 contact and support, reverse charge options and 0800 numbers.

3.What is included as standard in your policy

Some companies come in with a low rate and then charge extra for every doorknob eventually leading to over inflated cover. Go through the company’s policy offerings to be sure exactly what you are covered for. The range should be extensive as the company should know and have addressed a range of pitfalls you may not have thought of.

4.Who underwrites and supports the company

Establish who your support company will be should you face a medical emergency or the need for evacuation. Most companies do not handle these highly specialised areas themselves but have aligned themselves with skilled and experienced worldwide organisations to ensure the best possible protection and support for their customers.

5.Does the company cater for varying needs?

Does the company provide a one size fits all policy? Beware, you may be paying for cover you don’t need or be under insured in some critical areas. Look for a company which provides a range of covers including NZ only travel policies, backpacker, group or duo options, long stay, one way or gap insurance and more.

Not Just “Holidays”

As time has gone by, the idea of holiday has undergone deep changes depending on the fast development of our modern lifestyles.

Lignano Sabbiadoro bloomed in the Sixties and Seventies as a seaside resort and it was then considered to be among the most exclusive holiday destinations favoured by VIPs. Nowadays, however, it would be unthinkable to offer the same kind of holiday people used to look for thirty years ago: all holiday resorts and facilities had to adapt to the requirements of modern tourists, just like the Hotel Bella Venezia Mare did in order to be able to offer holidays which could actually turn out to be real “experiences” thanks to the many available activities and sports.

The a Hotel Bella Venezia Mare was founded in 1968 in the new location of Lignano Pineta. This district of the town Lignano Sabbiadoro was developed from an innovative urban planning according to which all the streets were built as being part of a whirl starting from the central “Rosa dei Venti square” and stretching until the outer arches reach the beach. As consequence of this peculiar urban plan, every house and every hotel in Lignano is located in the middle of a peaceful Mediterranean pinewood but, at the same time, not far from the town centre and the beach. The favourable location of the hotel Bella Venezia Mare has turned out to be the linchpin of all evolutions and updates this structure has undertaken.

Recently refurbished, this hotel has decided to focus on the high quality standard of the services it offers. Since now is unbelievably easy to get everywhere around the world, business competition in the tourist sector has exponentially increased and, in order to remain competitive and to be a match for far away exotic paradises, the best solution is to keep very high the quality standard of all services offered to tourists. That actually means making use of the experience acquired in the past, when only few people could afford flight tickets and some countries were not accessible at all.

The solid family management of the Hotel Bella Venezia has made it possible to establish the right balance between consistency and evolution: modern services, like WiFi Internet connection and on-line bookings are here available side by side with old traditional Mediterranean cuisine and customer care , which has remained the same.

Today’s lifestyle has turned comfort into a basic requirement, therefore a stay has to offer a lot more than this in order to be considered a true holiday: besides the comfort of baby-sitting services, best wine opener, of bicycles and baby buggies rentals the Hotel Bella Venezia has decided to put at its guests’ disposal swimming courses for free, useful presents for all those who stay at least one week and it makes it easier for them to practice several sports: tennis courts and golf green lie nearby while courses of scuba diving, kite-surf, wind-surf and sailing are offered at unbeatable conditions to the hotel guests.

The strategy chosen by the Hotel Bella Venezia Mare proofs that professionalism enables firms to offer very high quality services, thanks to which they are competitive on the market, but due to which they are bound to update constantly their services.

Adventure Travel – Close And Cheap

Adventure travel is becoming more popular all the time. It can be very expensive, though, and even a bit too dangerous for some of us. It doesn’t have to either, though. Here are a few ideas for small adventures you can afford. They are followed by a definition of adventure that will help you add your own to the list.

Try treasure hunting. Rent or buy a metal detector and spend a relaxing but interesting weekend finding coins, jewelry and who-knows-what in the sand at the beach. No beach nearby? Look up the historical records for your town, to see where old picnic grounds were. Treasure hunters regularly find old coins at places like these.

Take climbing lessons. Whether this is on Mount Ranier in Washington, or Mount Washington in New Hampshire, it’s sure to be an adventure. At least it will be more exciting than my trip up a local sledding hill with my ice-axe and crampons.

Travel form monastery to monastery. Make it a spiritual adventure or just relax. Most monasteries take in visitors, and usually have reasonably priced accommodations. The Buddhist ones in particular are most often in beautiful places.

Do a hot springs tour. This is for those who live in the west. Get a guide to hot springs or copy directions off the internet. Bring swimming suits (optional at some, for the more adventurous), towels and a cooler full of refreshments. Want more adventure? Seek out the ones that you have to hike into the wilderness to find.

The Cheapest Adventure Travel

Find and summit the highest peak in your state. This might be less-than-adventurous in some states, but it will at least be an excuse to get outside and get some good exercise. Be sure to bring your camera for the summit shot. You might try the highest point in the next state over for your next adventure trip.

Investigate and find the nearest hidden swimming holes. The best ones are ones that require a hike to get to. Watch for people heading down a trail with swimsuits and a cooler. Nobody hikes in swimsuit and drags a cooler into the woods, unless there is water involved.

Play Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn. Locate the nearest river that is large enough and has some public forest. Then build a raft from dead trees and float downstream for a day. We usually started by hiking upstream for an hour or more, so we could float back to the car.

A vagabond trip. Pack enough clothing and snacks for several days and just start driving, with no destination in mind. Who knows where you’ll end up, and what you’ll discover. Pack a tent or camp in your car to keep it really affordable.

That last one is a classic adventure trip in my book sponsored by CoffeeKnows. Adventure is any activity you engage in that is new to you and doesn’t have a predictable outcome. It doesn’t need to be dangerous to be interesting and fun, and could even include a trip to the nearest large city for a weekend tour of the nightclubs. Of course, depending on the places you choose, this could be fairly dangerous adventure travel.

American Express Travel Suggests Aruba Vacations Hard To Beat

From a traveler’s point of view, Aruba can be divided into two coasts. The southeast coast has the white sand beaches, turquoise seas, and warm waters. The northwest coast is exposed to the Atlantic, and therefore has rougher seas with treacherous currents and a rockier coastline. These two extremes contribute to Aruba’s growing reputation for being a “Desert Paradise.”

Weather in Aruba

Unlike a desert, Aruba’s weather is mostly the same, having no extremes and being fairly constant. But because of its more southern location in the Caribbean, the heat of the sun can be stronger than other Caribbean islands. A constant light breeze tempers the hot sun to create a cooling effect. The lack of rain is what really marks Aruba as a desert paradise. Most other Caribbean islands have a wet season and are prone to storms and hurricanes. Yet according to the information gathered by American Express Travel, the weather is almost always dry in Aruba, with most rain showers coming at night and lasting only a little while. Aruba is also on the outer hurricane zone, meaning it is rarely hit or affected by other storms.

With this lack of rain comes a lack of the lush vegetation that the other Caribbean islands are known for. The combination of comparatively sparcse vegetation, and the seemingly endless beach, Aruba is definitely a desert island. But all things considered, Aruba is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world. Most tourists see Aruba as remotely luxurious. And while this island of endless sand seems a bit like a desert, the waters bloom with tropical fish, perfect for diving, snorkeling, and fishing.

How Much Does it Cost and How to Save Money

Some travelers consider Aruba a relatively expensive place to go. However, while Aruba flights tend to be more expensive, hotels are often better deals. Unlike the Florida Keys or the Bahamas, Aruba is a long flight from almost all major airports. Aruba’s pricing is best described as moderate, offering both upscale and moderate accommodations and packages. There are some upscale hotels in Aruba who offer American Express Travel Deals, bringing the high end pricing down to something more reasonable. If you plan to do a lot of activities or dine out a lot, it’s a good idea to purchase a Visit Aruba discount card. With this card you can get deals in a lot of places, sometimes a 5-10% discount. You can also take a look at Free Discount Coupons to save some money. American dollars are accepted virtually everywhere at a decent exchange rate. The exchange rate given in shops is about 1.75 florins to the dollar.

Like most island destinations, American Express Travel representatives say that groceries and other supplies are all imported from elsewhere, so prices tend to be high. Ling & Sons Grocery is the closest to the resort area which has good prices, high quality and is one of the least known to tourists.

20 Tips for Being Productive While Traveling

For many mortgage professionals, frequent travel is a way of life. A big concern of frequent travelers is how to remain productive without access to the normal resources. Sometimes, that first trip leaves you feeling like a fish out of water. Especially if you didn’t anticipate your customer’s needs. But with each new journey, you will learn more ways to function efficiently. With a little planning, you can make your time away transparent to those you communicate with daily. Here are a few tips to make it happen:

1. Make a list of the things that need to be accomplished before your departure. Rate locks, file submissions, or any other critical appointments should be handled before you leave.

2. Contact processors, loan officers, underwriters, and other individuals to let them know you’ll have limited availability from _____ to _______.

3. Sign-up for an e-fax or other electronic fax service that will allow you to view, send, and receive faxes over the Internet. This will allow you to function just as if you were in the office. 4. Make a resource list for the things you will need to do while away. Include phone and fax numbers, website addresses, access codes, and passwords. Store this data on your pc, phone, or both.

5. Make a copy or scan an image of documents you may wish to reference while away. This will allow you to stay on top of the most important issues.

6. Save important letters, forms, and files to a jump drive, a CD, or e-mail them to yourself so that you can access them as needed. Convert documents that you would normally fax to a PDF format so they can be e-mailed but not altered.

7. Check the quality of your cell and laptop batteries. Get new ones if you will be without access to electricity to recharge for long periods of time. Be sure to pack your chargers as well.

8. Add a wireless card to your laptop if it does not have one already. Although your hotel may have their own Internet café, these rooms are sometimes crowded or have limited hours of availability. If the hotel charges for linking to their wireless network, if may be cheaper to purchase a wireless connection card through your cellular service provider.

9. Pack an Ethernet cord and a phone cord. This will allow you to get online no matter what type of connectivity your hotel has. You can log on to AOL or some other network.

10. Take a phone card as a backup. It may come in handy in areas where your cell phone signal drops. Used in conjunction with a cell phone, you can eliminate hotel phone charges altogether.

11. Pack pain reliever, antacid, and cold medicine just in case. If you have to buy these things on the road, they’ll cost double what they normally do.

12. Download audio files to an Ipod, mp3, or CD. Music or motivational audios may be just what you need to balance your day. You can also listen to a replay of a training session.

13. During your trip, incorporate as many of your normal activities as possible. Continue to exercise. Drink plenty of water and eat right. Take your vitamins. Keep in contact with family and friends. Let them know what time to call you.

14. Plan your day before going to your daily meeting, training, or appointment. This will allow you to make the most of breaks, lunches, or other dead time.

15. Make use of the special features on your phone. Text messaging and Internet access can be a lifesaver when you’re on the road.

16. Get the scoop on your hotel’s amenities in advance. The last thing you want is to have trouble connecting with your customers and your team because of limited resources. Go online to the hotel’s corporate website for a virtual tour. You might also check out ratings and feedback on Ask lots of questions.

17. Take along a healthy snack and a bottle of water or two. If you experience a flight delay or get stuck in rush hour traffic, you won’t be bothered by hunger or thirst.

18. Pack as light as possible. Pulling heavy luggage plus a laptop through the airport is no joke. Choose a jacket that will get you through the week. Bring a pair of dress shoes that go with everything and a pair of sneakers or sandals for down time. Your feet will thank you. Switch up your shirt/blouse with a basic pair of pants/skirt. Take travel size toiletries instead of full size ones to make more room in you luggage. And for the ladies: leave some of your hair artillery, fragrances, and makeup at home. This stuff alone can take up a full piece of luggage. You’ll look just as good with the bare essentials sponsored by BabyKnows.

19. Initiate contact with your customers and team members early in the day while you’re away. This will allow you to deal with challenges or concerns at a time when it is convenient for you. Otherwise, you may find yourself bombarded with phone calls and emergencies that could have been avoided had you made contact earlier.

20. Be realistic. There is no way that everything is going to be perfect when you’re away. If it were, then no one would need you in the first place. Take care of the biggest priorities. Give training and guidance before you leave and then delegate as many projects as you can. Make a plan to take care of other things within the first few days of your return.

When you plan your business trip well, you will feel far less pressure and frustration. It allows you to focus on the real purpose of your trip. You might even have the opportunity to get the rest and relaxation you find difficult to squeeze in at home. So, don’t fret about your next trip. Think more about how it will enhance your business and rejuvenate your mind and body. Happy traveling!