Can you believe it's already mid-August?! I've seen holiday decorations in stores already - where does the time go?!!
Have you been considering staying in an all-inclusive resort this winter? The reality is, not all all-inclusives are the same, and you need to be mindful of this when choosing one. For some people they think that their best bet is to choose the cheapest one, for others luxury is all the rage, and other still fear that they'll choose a place that doesn't give them everything that they're really looking for on vacation. If you’re looking for help in choosing the perfect all-inclusive resort for you, these considerations may assist you in making your choice...
First, look at the cost for staying there. Yes, you will want to consider the price you're paying. However, don't stop there. Take a look at what that price you're paying gets you. Unfortunately, the world all-inclusive doesn't necessarily mean “all-inclusive.” Some resorts will charge you a low price, and then sneak in a bunch of fees for everything from steak at dinner to using your in-room safe. It's important to look at the fine print of what your all-inclusive resort really includes.
Next, read reviews on each of the resorts that you are considering. It's no secret that in today's internet fueled world, tourists are ready, willing, and able, to tell the truth about the experiences that they're having at destinations worldwide. That gorgeous photo that you saw of that spectacular looking resorts on that private island, could in fact be massively photoshopped and look nothing like the photo in real life. At least real travelers are sharing the photos of what the place was actually like... which could be considered a blessing and a curse :) Just make sure to take in the information with caution, as not everyone has the same level of expectations or tastes, among many other factors accounting for their positive or negative thoughts.
Work with a reputable travel agent that will tell you what you really need to know about the all-inclusive resorts that you're considering. Destinations HD has the 411 on the hottest, most reliable, safest and overall knowledge on quality all-inclusive resorts that provide the best value. We only work with the best in the business, and we pass our personal experience and knowledge of these spectacular destinations onto you.
By not going in with your eyes wide-opened, you could end up with a second-rate vacation. We want to help you avoid that. When you’re ready to book your all-inclusive getaway, call Destinations HD at (913) 244-9195. We’ll help ensure you get the most bang for your travel buck and have a quality experience!
Summer is almost over; can you believe it?! Now that the kids are preparing for school and parents are getting back to a normal routine, as the summer activities of entertaining the family are coming to an end... it's time to plan those Fall/Winter vacations while prices are still low. As you begin to plan those trips, there are some things many don't think about, but is a note-worthy discussion. Most people don't want to think about the possibility of pick-pocketing or other thefts that can occur while traveling - and while most the time there is nothing to fear, it's always a good idea to prepare yourself to not be a target. I have compiled a list of 10 ways you can protect your valuables on your next vacation...
As you start thinking about the upcoming school year and scheduling all the vaccines and upcoming flu shots to help protect against illness - many don't realize that taking vacation time can also improve your health.
Here's a sobering statistic – more than half of Americans likely didn't take all of their vacation days in 2016 according to CNN. That makes this fact a little more understandable unfortunately – in countless studies it has been found that a majority of Americans say they're stressed at work. We all know that stress can lead to illness and other health issues. Traveling and taking all of our vacation days is critical for reducing stress and maintaining better health overall. Let's explore why travel is good for your health...
The body and mind need a break and travel is the only thing that helps you truly get away. When you get up, go to work, work hard, stay late, barely eat, then come home – you're usually exhausted. And, your day is probably not over yet. Then there's the kids' extracurricular activities, cooking dinner, doing the chores – on and on it goes, leaving you desperate for a break. However, the trouble with simply taking a day off from work, is that most people don't take their vacation days to relax. They fill them up with other responsibilities – doctor's appointments, renewing licenses, stops to the post office, etc…
Traveling allows you the chance to stop worrying about all of that other stuff. Getting away from it all is the only way to, well, get away from it all. When you're in another city, or country you can't do all those errands. You have to focus on the one thing you've been craving all along – relaxation! Relaxing replenishes your batteries inside and out.
You'll give your mood a boost. Travel improves our emotional state too. When our emotions are elevated, our cells regenerate faster, and we become healthier as a result. If the mind and body are in a constant state of fight or flight, it will become fatigued, breaking down our immune systems and our willpower to find the positive side to things. The best part of traveling to take that critical break? There's a residual effect – long after you return, you'll still be feeling happy about your trip. Why? You'll likely have pictures of the escape, and that will transport your mind back to the happy place, and hence your happy state.
Many aspects of your health will improve thanks to traveling. Forbes Magazine reported that “Active travel is proven to lower health risks such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, heart disease, colon cancer, breast cancer, depression levels and more, according to the Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee.”
Travel improves the health of your relationships too. As Passport Health says, “It’s common knowledge that travel helps to bring people together by building lifelong memories. Couples are strongly and positively affected by trips taken together. More than 75 percent of adults credit travel with improving their interpersonal relationships. Studies show family travel can also significantly reduce behavioral problems and illness in children.”
Bottom line – Travel improves your mental, physical and emotional health simply by allowing you to take a break from the daily stresses of life. So, what are you waiting for? Isn't it about time you planned a getaway for the sake of your health? We think so! When you do, we hope you'll think of Destinations HD. Call us at (913) 244-9195 today, and let us help you create the vacation of your dreams!
As summer living is in full swing, I am getting a lot of vacation requests - not sure if this is due to kids driving parents crazy now OR it's just the season :) I'm receiving many inquiries for upcoming milestone anniversary and celebrations and the most common destination inquiry for these events is the dreamy islands of Tahiti. I thought I would take this time to discuss other options for Tahiti for those that want to see many islands, but don't necessarily have the time or budget to island hop.
Tahiti is one of those utopia destinations that is incredibly popular, not only because year-round warm weather, but also the gorgeous surroundings, spectacular beaches, and the friendliest people you will ever meet! The average year-round temperature is just 79 degrees. Couple that with the water temperature average of 79 in the winter and 84 in the summer, and you've got practically perfect vacation conditions. You will be embraced by Mana, the life force that connects all things in Tahiti, as soon as you arrive. With 118 islands and atolls spread over five archipelagos, there is something new to experience at every turn. Each island offers a verity of activities and accommodation experiences, so if you're looking to explore the islands, and want to do it in a unique way, you might want to consider a Tahiti cruise!
On a Tahitian cruise, you'll get to see multiple destinations, and you'll travel aboard what is essentially a moving hotel – unpack once and explore the beauty around you! Doesn't that sound just amazing?
Let's take a quick peek at some of the options for cruising Tahiti:
High-End Cruising Aboard a Luxury Liner
There's cruising, and then there is luxury cruising. When you're on a luxury liner you're treated like the VIP that you are. Once you step aboard, all of your meals and lodging are included, and some cruise lines offer extra perks like alcoholic beverages, a personal butler and/or private excursions. Just imagine visiting French Polynesia by day, and being waited on like the rich and fabulous by night!
One thing to note though, on some luxury liners, you will find these are more extended vacations that combine stops at several of the Tahitian islands, but starts or ends in destinations like New Zealand or Australia. If you have the time to spare, these are great cruises to see so much more than just a beach paradise. However, if you don’t have that much time to explore, there are dedicated cruise lines that only focus on the French Polynesia and some offer all-inclusive pricing with meals, drinks and entertainment all included!
Yachting from Island to Island
The difference between a large high-end cruise line and a yacht? The level of intimacy and the number of your fellow boating mates. Some of the larger lines can host as many as 3,000 guests, where as smaller yachts could be limited to 350 people, or even as little as two guests (some with a personal cook).
Smaller cruise boat options like yachts can also get into areas the larger boats can't, and this will give you the opportunity to do things like snorkeling in secluded spots, paddle boarding or kayaking in picturesque settings, or relaxing with little to no noise and slipping completely into vacation mode.
Low Key or Extreme Adventure
Regardless of whether you choose to go with a large liner or a small, intimate cruise, your Tahitian cruise can be what you want it to be. The options are truly limitless. You can choose casual, calm excursions intent on helping you relax. However, if you prefer a more extreme cruise experience, there are excursions such as swimming with sharks and sting rays, or intense rides on a 4X4 amidst sheer cliffs that get you up close to a volcano!
Your Cruise is What You Make It
Believe it or not, we've barely scratched the surface of the options available to you for cruising Tahiti. If you would like to learn more about the perfect cruise that fits your needs, call Destinations HD at (913) 244-9195. However you choose to island hop, we'll make sure your trip fulfills as many of your vacation dreams as possible. Experiences Await...
As summer vacations are in full swing, some of you may have family reunions to attend. There are few things as wonderful as going on a trip for a big family reunion. However, sometimes it's time for a change and experience something a little more memorable than a park picnic for a few hours. Is it time to upgrade your family reunion and actually spend quality time together?
When it comes to a large group trip, you shouldn't try to manage all the planning on your own. A handful of family members inevitably get stuck with handling far too many of the elements of the vacation. Avoid this recipe for disaster by hiring Destinations HD as your travel coordinator. We have some great options for all ages that will spice up your family reunion and create memories that will be discussed for a lifetime!
There's more to it than just picking a place and a time. The family can all vote on a place to go, and even the week/weekend you will all show up together, but then the real planning begins! When will everyone arrive and depart? Will you be flying coach or first class? Will anyone be staying an extra day or leaving early? How will you all get from the airport to hotel? Who still owes money? Does anyone have allergies or disabilities that need to be addressed with the hotel/cruise? These are details you don't need to worry with.
By hiring Destinations HD as your travel coordinator, we take care of all the particulars of your trip for you and your family. Instead of a few of your family members needing to make a second job out of preparing for this event, we can book the flights, the hotel, the cruise, the transportation, even the dinner reservations and activities if necessary.
Will it be a cruise, a stay at an all-inclusive resort, or some other adventure overseas? Destinations HD can help you decide that too! We help match you to the best vacation destinations, and create the perfect trip itinerary to fit your family's needs and expectations.
Destinations HD can handle the group communications, and payment processing as well. Why worry about whether or not Uncle Joe paid, or if Aunt Suzie received the schedule update? By allowing us to take care of the heavy lifting, your focus can stay on what you need to do to enjoy your trip. Plus, we also offer payment plans to make it more affordable for everyone (depending on how far in advance you make travel arrangements).
No one will be left in the dark either. We work with you to keep you and your family informed of any, and all things, you need to know related to the trip. By hiring us, you can rest assure that you have a professional on your side, working on your behalf to ensure that your family reunion comes together as seamlessly as possible. You don't have to worry about communicating with the hotel on each guest’s dietary needs/requests or answering the same travel questions over-and-over regarding if they need to pack a towel, how far shopping is, or what travel documents are required - We take care of all the details so you can enjoy the excitement with the rest of your family!
Trips big and small – we've managed them all. Now we'd like to help you manage your family reunion next year. Plan early to get the space you want at the hotel/cruise AND it gives everyone enough time to save. When you're ready to start planning, call Destinations HD at (913) 244-9195. You'll be glad you did!
Kids are finally out of school and summer vacations are beginning for everyone! Woo hoo! If you are planning a trip, whether near or far from your hometown, keeping your home safe is probably on your mind. If it's not, it should be because nobody wants to go on a fabulous vacation only to return to find they've been invaded. When you are traveling it's a good idea to take the necessary precautions to ensure your property and possessions are protected when you are away.
Here are just of few of those precautions you can take:
Hire a House Sitter
The presence of a house sitter can deter potential robbers because most robberies tend to occur when homes are vacant for more than a couple of days. If you don't hire a house sitter, at least have a neighbor keep an eye on the home. Have them collect mail and newspapers as well so that it's not abundantly obvious no one is home.
Leave the Place Organized and Lawn Manicured
If an intruder peeks in your window you don't want them to see your luggage that you didn't use stacked and the mess strewn about from where you packed in a hurry. This could allow them to speculate you're away. Cut your lawn right before you leave and if you will be gone a while, consider hiring someone to cut it while you're out.
Lock Away your Valuable Items
Money and high-cost items like jewelry, computers, television sets, digital cameras etc, are the main targets for criminals. Even if you don't clean your place completely before you leave, at least be sure that these items are not visible. In fact, consider locking your valuables in a safe and placing it in a concealed location to make your valuables difficult to find. This way, if someone does break in they will be less likely to get your good stuff. And, if you do have a safe, take the keys to it with you on your vacation.
Don't use Social Media to Announce Your Departure
Announcing your departure publicly on social media is a great way to tell would-be burglars that you're space will be empty. As tempting as it may be, don't do it! If you simply must state you're leaving for a trip, at least tag a relative/friend/neighbor with a “Thanks for house sitting post!” even if it's not true. Just remember, when you post that you will be away, the news could be seen by the wrong people that are not so trustworthy.
Consider Threats Such as Fire/ Natural Disasters as Well.
Although it's unlikely anything horrible will happen while you are away, it's not a bad idea to unplug all electrical appliances before you leave and even kick a few breakers to prevent the chance of electrical sparks that could start a fire. You can also shut off your water to prevent frozen and bursting pipes (seasonal). While you're at it, make sure your home owner's/ renter's insurance premiums are up to date. This way if something were to happen while you're away, you won't have to worry about whether or not there was a lapse in service.
All of this may seem like overkill, but like all things, it's better to be safe than sorry.
Haven't planned your summer getaway, but ready to get away?! Give us a call to discuss your plans!
Visiting Europe is no longer a distant dream to most people because the place has opened up to tourists in more ways than one can imagine. When making plans to visit, however, many folks haven't the slightest clue where to begin in terms of designing their itineraries, sites to see, places to eat, etc…
Enter the escorted European Tour! These guided tours are created just for you and your unique needs, and they are designed to handle the logistics and confusion that can often come with planning a vacation. Every possible detail will be taken care of from your attraction reservations to your transportation, even your dinner plans be they exotic or a simple nearby cafe. All you have to do is show up and enjoy the sights and sounds of the vast and beautiful continent while the professionals take care of the complexities...
Believe it or not, escorted tours can save you time and money as well. Rather than risking paying price gouged tourists rates, you will not only find the best deals possible within your budget, but you'll have an advocate on your side that can work with your schedule often securing reservations that might not even be available to the general public. These tour guides are well trained and knowledgeable professionals who are familiar with the history and customs of the land. These professionals will explain the history behind famous tourist spots and even take you to lesser known places where you can enjoy the moment of peace and tranquility. With a guide, you can see Europe through the eyes of a native who knows his way around every town and stories that make this land so great.
Imagine for just a moment having every detail of your journey planned for you: no last-minute mix-ups, no miscommunication, no maps, being safe and secure with a group that does this regularly and having an entire vacation that runs smoothly without any hiccups. Doesn't this sound like a real vacation to you? They do all the work and you are just along for the ride! And, the best part is there are a vast variety of escorted tours available in pretty much every European destination you can think of!
Just some of the escorted tours available include:
Want to learn more about the escorted tours available to you?
Give Destinations HD a call at (913) 244-9195 today! Experiences Await...
Summer break is so close and many families are preparing for their upcoming summer vacays! For many travelers, health is the last thing on their minds when traveling. However, it's important to consider how your actions while traveling can affect you upon returning home. The last thing you, or your boss for that matter, wants is for you to return worse off than when you left only to request sick days after your vacation. Below you will find some tips for staying healthy when traveling, and the best part is it may help you enjoy your trip even more!
Watch What You Eat
I know, I know! You're on vacation. I'm not saying don't indulge, but I am saying don't over indulge. Sure, have some carbs. And of course, have that second glass of wine. Just be mindful of the fact that if you go too overboard with the indulgence you could pay the price that day, the next day, or worse – the entire trip. There are few things as depressing as having a hangover while you're away, and missing out on the fun.
Plus, when we are used to eating and drinking a certain way, our bodies can react negatively to overdoing it with the heavier and more sugary food and drinks than it's used to. It might not be food poisoning, it could just be your body rejecting the junk it's not used to. TIP: Pineapple is a natural diuretic, so enjoy those Piña colada's in moderation.
Move Your Body
When you're traveling, it's important to get in a little exercise. The good news is, you will probably be walking a lot more than you would at home. However, if you have been too sedentary for a while, i.e. flights that last 14 hours going overseas, get the blood flowing as soon as possible. Some experts even suggest taking a walk on the plane if you will be flying for more than a few hours.
Get Sleep – Seven to Eight Hours Minimum
Do yourself a favor and don't stay up late and get up early everyday of your trip. Yes, there may be a lot you want to see and do on your trip, but not getting enough sleep wreaks havoc on your immune system. Sleep recharges your batteries, allows healthy cell regeneration, and allows you to be more present during your waking hours.
Drink More Water
Water is the best thing you can be drinking when traveling (and when you're at home). It flushes toxins, re-hydrates your body, aids in digestion, boosts your mood, keeps you more awake than coffee – just trust me, water is awesome! Drink plenty of it. If you will be walking a lot, or will be in warmer climates, you'll need to drink more to stay hydrated enough as well. De-hydration is the number one cause of jetlag, and water is the best way to flight back on long flights.
Don't forget to bring hand sanitizer and wipes with you. I like to wipe down my seat area on the plane - you never know what happened there before you (I have seen some very unpleasant things). I also keep my hand sanitizer close after touching all the germy luggage, doors, bathroom stalls, etc...
This is far from an exhaustive list of ways to stay healthy while traveling. Hopefully, it's got you thinking about some ways you can help yourself though. May your vacations be long, your transits hassle free, and your bodies be healthy. Experiences Await...
When I receive cruise inquiries and start discussing all the category options, most the responses I hear are “Oh, I wouldn’t have even thought about that.” If you have ever priced out cruises online, you know there are many price points and category types - and for good reason… the location, views, space and amenities, all play a role in your cruise vacation experience.
There are several stateroom options when cruising. The options can honestly be quite overwhelming. Will you have a jogging track with people stirring about outside your ocean view window? Will the balcony be off-limits when you are in port due to location? Is there a life boat obstructing your balcony or window views? The list goes on of things to think about when mapping out your room location/category. How then, can you determine which cabin is right for you?
Let's explore your options a little further to help you better determine what your choice is…
Will you be near the elevators?
The determining factor here is whether you are seeking convenience or quiet. Rooms that are closer to the elevators experience quite a bit of foot traffic, so you could find yourself hearing footsteps in the wee hours of the morning. If you can sleep regardless of noise, however, the convenience of being close to the elevator may be valuable depending on the location to activities you want to experience, friends/family rooms, mobility issues, etc...
Do you want to be at the back of the ship, the front of the ship, or in the middle?
In all honesty, this one is a little tricky. It can depend on what is above or below you. For example, if you're directly above or below the dance club, theater or the ship's casino your room could be filled with the vibrations and thuds of music, slot machines and other murmuring. It's a good idea to look at the layout of the entire ship to see what elements could be around you.
Balcony, Suite or Interior?
A room with a balcony is always worth the investment, especially for special occasions. Think about it, if you're cruising somewhere spectacular like Alaska, you can take your morning coffee amongst views of scenic glaciers. And, let's not forget how romantic a dinner for two on the balcony could be. Interior cabins with no view may be a little cheaper, but for some cruise goers, this can also mean they are more likely to get seasick because they can't see what's around them. You will also enjoy the space – the interior and ocean view staterooms can feel like closets for those that may be claustrophobic or if it’s your first cruise experience - make it more enjoyable by selecting the right stateroom.
If you're cruising for a major event such as your honeymoon, 50th birthday party or a milestone wedding anniversary, consider upgrading to a junior suite or full suite. They are significantly more spacious, and you'll feel like a VIP, especially when you consider that most cruise lines offer additional perks and amenities to suite guests!
How long do you plan to spend in the room?
For some cruise goers, they just want a place to sleep at night. Others enjoy hanging out in their cabins for longer periods of time, such as on sea-days. If you know you will be spending more time in the cabin, you will most likely want a larger space to spread out. So, perhaps the better question is, what kind of traveler are you?
Of course, there are many other factors you may want to consider before making your cabin or cruise choice. If this sounds like you, Destinations HD can assist you in making the perfect decision for your needs. Give us a call at (913) 244-9195, today!
With all the controversy in the news lately on this topic, and from my recent airport experiences (getting held up from passengers that aren’t prepared in front of me, in turn causing panic from those running late in line), I thought it was a good topic to address.
We've certainly come a long way since flying was a luxury event that could cost you up to 5% of your salary, and was was a rare thing for people to do. In the 1950s people got all dolled up for the event, and documented every moment because it was likely the only time that year, or even that decade they would get the opportunity to fly. Luckily, these days flying is significantly more common, and you aren't expected to dress to the nines just for a flight. Still, flying often has people wondering what they should wear for the occasion. With this in mind, I thought I'd offer up a quick guide to how to dress for the airport...
First, Think TSA Compliance
As frustrating as it is to go through the TSA Screenings, this minor inconvenience is worth it for the safety it's intended to provide. Of course, there are some things you need to consider when dressing for your flight including:
Keep it Comfortable, Yet Fashionable
According to Business Insider, a person that is more dressed up is much more likely to be upgraded should their flight be overbooked. Although this doesn't mean you need a blazer and a gold watch, dolling up a little might not hurt. For ladies, a comfortable maxi dress could be the perfect outfit complete with a sweater because, let's face it, flights can get really cold. Men can get away with khakis and a nice polo shirt, and still look fashionable and relaxed.
What you wear for a flight doesn't have to be complicated. All you need is an outfit that provides the perfect blend of cozy, trendy, and airport-friendly. Safe travels!
Call Destinations HD to plan your next vacation: (913) 244-9195
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