Understanding the STEP Program - Enrollment Information and Why You Need It Before Your Next International Trip
When traveling, an added sense of security never hurt anyone. It’s one of the reasons we sell travel insurance. Peace of mind just helps one get into vacation mode that much more easily.
We want less to worry about. The STEP program is one more way to have added peace of mind. But, what is STEP and why and how should you enroll in it?
Food is perhaps the biggest element of traveling and one of my favorites! It’s the one component that you can revisit when you are at home that almost instantly brings you right back to the place you were when you tried a dish.
That authentic bruschetta that transports you back to Italy, the Paella that teleports you to Spain, and the banana and Nutella crepe that has you daydreaming of your trip around Paris. There’s nothing quite like indulging in the cuisines of the world. Are you drooling thinking about it, or is that just me?!
If you haven't vacationed in some time, and are a foodie too, you may also be craving the dishes that you'd normally enjoy on vacation. The good news is, you can spice up your home life by attempting to make new recipes until you are ready (or until borders reopen) to visit your dream destination again.
While it may not ever be as authentic at the real thing, and we have to make it ourselves instead of being served, we can at least try our hands at the culinary arts and relive our past travel experiences while we wait.
With that in mind, I've provided several links below that I recommend perusing with some popular dishes you can try. Pick a few recipes and make a menu themed for the destinations you want to visit.
Add to the spirit of authenticity by hitting up your local international grocery stores to get as close to the actual spices, seasonings, and even meats they use in other parts of the world!
I hope you enjoy our food picks and share which recipes you try!
Happy New Year! I don’t know about you, but I’m personally happy to put 2020 behind me and forge forward into this new year!
With that being said – I know that a lot of you are looking forward to the next time that you can travel again! Worldwide travel that is. There are some destinations already open for American tourists, but each country has their own entry requirements to consider before you venture out.
I’m so ready for the vaccine release to continue circulation so we can see more countries open up for travel, in addition to, providing us all a better idea on expectations for any new travel requirements. I will keep you updated on this news as soon as there are definite answers released.
As we start this new, and hopefully improved year – I wanted to make an official announcement about a new and EXCITING destination that I’ve added to my travel planning services as a new specialty...
Unless you have an endless supply of wealth, odds are you won’t be able to travel the world full-time. Still, that doesn’t mean you can’t bring the world to you with travel decor and novelty items that remind you of the places you’ve been and the places you still want to go.
Everywhere I go, I try to pick-up one piece of something, whether that be artwork, clothing, bowls (dining or storage), signs, trinkets, etc… Even if it’s just a special photo, I will get it printed on canvas to add around my house. Anything that reminds me of the experience and memories I’ve created during my travels. Such a simple way to wake up with a smile and start your day on a good note – what’s better than reliving all your carefree memories as you walk around your house!
Check out a few of the below items I found recently when I went down the rabbit hole looking at some travel themed goodies...
If you are anything like me, your travel bug is getting anxious to explore again! It's been great to see many destinations starting to re-open and accepting tourists again these past few weeks, and I'm looking forward to seeing even more this summer.
As I have started planning new vacations again, there is one thing I noticed trending in regards to the immediate future of vacation planning... You must plan in advance and prepare more than you normally would. Let me take you on a quick imaginative journey of one of these exclusive experiences you must pre-plan, even earlier than before, to guarantee your spot!
Imagine breathtaking views that are still largely untouched by commercialism and not overrun with tourists. Picture mountain views, canyons carved by rushing waters, and stunning landscapes. Now imagine being able to view it all from a world-class train that puts you up close with nature while transporting you in luxury. You can enjoy all this and more with one of the many Rocky Mountaineer luxury train tours.
While this year is a no go for this adventure - there are already limited options for the 2021 season as everyone had to reschedule from their cancelled 2020 trip. They have a short season any how (from late April to October), so you should jump on pre-planning now or you may be stuck with waiting until 2022!
Like so many of you, we here at Destinations HD have been rethinking (and rescheduling!) our vacation plans this summer. The world is re-opening, but as we talked about recently, travel is going to be a little different for a while. So what next? If you aren't comfortable to jet-off to far away destinations with multiple plane trips right now, what can you look to do instead?
The answer that we are excited to share, is small group adventures right here in the USA! When you have grown up here, I think it’s easy to forget how special your own backyard is. (not literally. I think we are all sick to death of our own backyards at this point, am I right?!)
It's a perfect time to get out there and see our beautiful and diverse country with your friends and loved ones, as well as, put some fervor and finance back into the country. Read on below, to learn a little more about what Destinations HD can offer in terms of travel in the United States...
With Mother’s Day just around the corner, I know that there are so many of us who won’t be able to celebrate our mother’s, mother figures, and the outstanding father’s who’ve played both Mom and Dad to us, in quite the same way this year.
With travel restrictions slowly lifting however, we can give the Gift of Reconnection in the form of a future travel certificate – and start thinking about the kind of travel that we can safely embark on as we enter our new normal way of life.
For those of us wanting to get back into the world and see new places or different scenery, but who are still wary of jumping right back into the fray of extensive multi-destination trips or mega-resorts, there are a number of smaller boutique and secluded style options available that are ideal to start. Let's explore a few of those today...
As you can imagine, I’ve been working 'round the clock recently assisting clients with refunds, rescheduling and cancellations of everything from the quick 4-day getaways to Mexico, to rearranging entire wedding groups, as well as, month-long European adventures.
Throughout these last couple of months, as the situation has continued to evolve, I’ve noticed significant differences in vendor/supplier responses and treatment towards their guests, travel partners and staff members.
As a result, it’s made me appreciate the additional levels of security, protection, and options that are available when choosing to work with vendors that are stable enough to provide most (if not all) components for a lengthy multi-destination adventure versus securing each individual travel component with multi-vendors.
As a small business owner, I strongly believe in supporting the local communities and businesses abroad when I travel, but it’s important to understand that when working with a larger vendor, it doesn’t actually mean that you’re choosing “big business” over small and local.
Quality vendors, partner with locals in the community to ensure that they help the local economies and people, in addition to providing travelers with an immersive local experience.
To this end, I want to shine a spotlight on the “tour” experiences offered for multi-destination vacations. There are still a lot of misconceptions about taking tours, and the most common one is that a tour is squeezing onto a bus with a group of strangers and being driven past sights to snap some pictures before quickly moving on to the next place.
While those kinds of tours do exist and can be the right choice for some, there are a multitude of other ways to take advantage of the tour benefits while maintaining the flexibility of independent travel. You want to ensure that your trip is protected and that you work with the suppliers who have your best interest at heart!
I was going to talk about Corona Virus a little, but honestly – I don’t think I need to say too much yet. Until there is more information to give, please just wash your hands and if you’re at risk of being compromised by this virus, be extra vigilant. If you have travel booked within the next few weeks have a chat to your doctor and just continue to use common sense and sanitization practices.
And that’s it – that’s all that really needs to be said as this all continues to evolve and develop. So instead of going on about this, I would much rather talk about a joyous adventure and share a bit about my most recent travel experience – a once in a lifetime (I lie... I will definitely be going back in this lifetime) safari in Africa and visit to Zanzibar in Tanzania!
As I plan my clients resort vacations, a common question I receive is about the experiences one can enjoy in destination. While one of the most appealing things about all-inclusive resorts is that they allow you to visit coveted destinations for one lumped together price. However, where these resorts sometimes fall short, is in giving you cultural experiences of the destination you’re visiting. The good news is, that staying at an all-inclusive resort doesn’t mean you have to stick to the resort life.
Here’s how you can enjoy cultural experiences while still enjoying the sheltered luxury of an all-inclusive resort...