Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Trusted Saskatoon Travel Expert share great tips for packing

Great tips for packing:

 


• start by putting your name, address and phone number on each piece of luggage
• before packing, lay out the items you plan to take, and re-evaluate, to eliminate any unnecessary items. Pack items tightly - to avoid them moving around. To save room, pack smaller items in shoes
• to save room on clothing - choose a base color for pants, skirts and shorts, then match with a few hig...hlight colors. And don't forget to accessorise, with scarves, hats and wraps, as they can easily add color to any outfit
• pack toiletries in plastic bags to avoid spillages. Pack all liquids or gels / sprays over 100ml in your checked bags - or else you will have to throw them out at customs!
• do not pack travel documents, medication, jewelry, money or travellers checks in your checked bag. Only take the absolute minimum, regarding jewelry or money. Keep all items securely in your money belt - or somewhere safe that is always at your side
• remember - only pack your bag two-thirds full, to leave room for shopping and souvenirs!

 

 

What to Pack
• start by making a list. Be sure to check the weather forecast of the destination you are heading to, and take into consideration any activities and outings you will be doing
• always pack sunscreen, bug spray, after bite and aloe Vera. Don't forget the other important things like, Tylenol or Advil, or Pepto Bismol. Items like these can be found at destination, but often aren't cheap! For example, almost $25 for a small bottle of Sunscreen at a resort in Cancun
• always be sure to take at least one long sleeve shirt, rain / wind coat, and closed toed shoes
• electronics - be sure to bring extra batteries, chargers, or memory cards. Also check electrical outlets and adapters needed for the places you are visiting



 

What not to Pack
• valuable, and expensive - looking jewelry

• irreplaceable objects
• all unnecessary credit cards
• your identity card, library card or any similar items you may routinely carry in your wallet


 


 Before you Go
• make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after you plan to return
• alert all credit card providers of places you will be visiting, and how long you will be travelling, to reduce the risk of having your cards "frozen"
• check currencies that are used at your destination, find out what currencies are accepted, and what aren't. Be sure to research if ATM's are available, and what credit cards are accepted. Also find out if it is best to exchange currency before you go, or at destination
• make sure your family and close friends have copies of your travel itinerary and hotels you will be staying at
• avoid "bill shock" - check all international and text rates with your provider, and disable data roaming to avoid an extremely large bill upon return
• make copies of your passport details, insurance policy, visas and credit card number. Carry one in a separate place from the original, and leave a copy with someone at home
• find out if you need any new vaccinations. Some countries require foreign travellers to carry an International Certificate of Vaccination. Before you travel, check the Country Specific Information of the country you are visiting
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trusted Saskatoon Travel Agent gives 10 Reasons Why You Still Need a Travel Agent

 

Here they share 10 Reasons Why You Still Need a Travel Agent:

 

 

In the age of online booking sites, using a travel agent may feel like going the way of the dinosaur. But agents are more useful than simply selling trips to Disney World and cruises. Many agents still provide services or have knowledge that you just can’t get online –and sometimes, especially in times of crisis, working with a real live person is just plain superior.

Here are 10 reasons why they're still useful:

1) They Are Educated and Have Personal Experience

Simply put, they know more than you. They can give you insider tips and advice, using their education and personal experience to guide your vacation decisions in a way that provides you with the best vacation possible for you and your hard-earned investment. They have access to the personal feedback from hundreds of clients, and their own personal travel agent network, to provide insights you can’t get on TripAdvisor or other social media sites.

2) They Have Clout

Many travel agents develop personal relationships with individuals at the companies they sell. They leverage these relationships to get you things you can’t get on your own. That “sold out” room or the connecting rooms you want for your extended family trip when the online sites say they aren’t available. They also have exclusive entrée to experiences you might not know are available to you.

3) The Fixer

In addition to getting you more on any particular trip, they can step in and fix things when your trip goes awry. The average consumer books one or two trips per year, typically with different travel suppliers, so they have little or no leverage when things go wrong. The travel agent is constantly selling a particular supplier and has the leverage to fix things, even when the supplier isn’t directly at fault. Travel suppliers value the travel agent’s business much more than any individual traveler. They will step up to make things right or simply to make sure that traveler, and their travel agent, are happy.

4) Cost-Savings

The best travel agents have unique access to benefits that can save you a lot of money and provide you with a better experience: free room upgrades, spa credits, food and beverage credits are just a few of the things that agents can get, that you can’t. Add in hard-to-get restaurant reservations, exclusive or priority access to attractions, added amenities, and you will have a lot more value for your travel dollar. (Ever wonder why the couple in the cabin next to yours got champagne and you didn't? They probably used a travel agent)

5) Time-Savings

Instead of searching blindly on the Internet for hours, days, or even weeks – depending on the complexity of the travel plans – you can have an expert do the research for you, with your personal needs in mind. They do it for every component of the trip and very often do it at no cost to you.

6) Safety Net

If anything should go wrong during your trip, you can rely on them to assist you. A travel agent will suggest and arrange alternate travel arrangements, help you to deal with any travel emergency you may have, and put you in touch with the right local people to answer your needs.

7) On the Cutting Edge

They are on the cutting edge of what's new: Travel agents are the first to know about a new resort, cruise ship or tour. They have relationships with their best travel partners who keep them informed as to the latest and greatest offerings they have. So if you want to travel on the latest and greatest, agents are the way to go!

8) You Pay the Same Anyway!

More than 98 percent of hotels are parity priced. That means the cost is the same whether you book it yourself or have the travel agent do the work. Some travel agents even have websites that feature the same inventory, bookable in real time, as Expedia and Orbitz. The customer gets the best of the high tech world, in a high touch, environment. This parity pricing applies to virtually every travel product.

9) You Get Matched Right

If you call a cruise line directly, they won’t tell you that their competitor is a better fit for you and your travel needs. Since travel agents sell everything, they focus on you’re your particular needs, making sure you are matched up with the right.

10) An Ongoing Mutually Beneficial Relationship

A good agent is like a good mechanic. Once you find them, you’ll never want to give them up. Travel could be your biggest discretionary spend in any given year, along with your limited time, so you want to make sure it’s done right. When they make that happen, you’ll want them in your inner circle moving forward.

Call today to start planning your visit to this beautiful destination! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trusted Saskatoon Travel Expert share some great tips on Cuba

 

Great tip on Cuba: 

"I have never seen a more beautiful country, with palm leaves so big they can roof a house, with thousands of shells on the beach, with such limpid water, and always the same dizzying symphony of bird songs." Christopher Columbus, 1492     

 

Today, Cuba remains the same beautiful country, with breathtaking scenery and the perfect beaches. A trip to Cuba is like a mini visit around the world. Here you can visit the ruins of French coffee plantations, tour Spanish colonial cities that date back to the 16th century, relax in the European-style spas, and dance to the Afro-Cuban and Latin beats. With an atmosphere like that of New York City, Havana, Cuba's capitol, is a city that moves to the beat of its own rhythm.  

 

  

 

Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean, and offers sun-seekers more than 300 beautifully clean, natural beaches. Caressed by the warm Caribbean waters on the south, and Atlantic ocean on the north, Cuba is blessed with biological richness and incredible diversity of marine species. Four large groups of coral reef are found surrounding the island, these are among the largest and best preserved in the world. Thanks to Cuba's sub-tropical climate, swimming and diving the clear waters are enjoyable all year round. 

 

 

Whether you're planning a romantic getaway, a family holiday or an urban adventure, one of Cuba's 240 beachside hotels will surely be the perfect place for you. Or, choose to stay in a charming historic building that has been restored to today's modern comforts. 

 

 

Facts:

- Cuba averages 330 days of sunshine a year

- Cuba actually posses one of the best health care systems in the world

- schooling, health care, and food are promptly available without cost of any Cuban citizen

- Cuba is made up of over 4,000 islands and cays

- Cuba is the most populated country in the Caribbean, with a population of over 11 million

- Cuba is only 90 miles away from America

 

 

 

 

 

Trusted Saskatoon Travel Expert share some great tips on the Dominican Republic

 

Great tip on the Dominican Republic:

 

 

There is no place on earth quite like the Dominican Republic. An unlikely mixture of European, African and Taino Indian cultures have created a history and culture like no other.  The diversity of their food, music, art, sports and religion have created a unique insight into the development of their country, and these distinct cultures still drive their people today.

 

The Dominican Republic shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti, and they enjoy a year-round summer. Lined with sugar-white sand beaches and shaded by palm trees, this destination is a haven for sun worshippers. While small fishing villages may attract locals and back packers, the large all-inclusive industry appeals to both couples and families.  The Dominicans leisurely lifestyle has been attracting new travelers each and every year.

 

 

 

The activities here are endless, Scuba divers can plunge deep for shipwrecks in the waters of Bayahibe. Inland, you can visit one of the oldest cities in the Caribbean , Santo Domingo, who's cobble stone streets take you past old stone buildings and museums. Or, check out the thundering waterfall, Salto de Aguas Blancas, or observe the incredible marine life at Manati Park. 

 

 

 

For dinner, why not taste the authentic Dominican cuisine. Local's love their national dish, La Bandera (rice, beans meat, vegetables and fried plantains), as well as the subtle flavors of stewed fish and conch. Wash it all down with a bottle of Dominican Republic Presidente  beer or a rum cocktail. 

 

 

 

 

After supper, experience the nightlife and entertainment first hand, as locals and visitors flock to the dance clubs  in the city and hotels along the beach. Test your luck at the Casino's in the larger resorts which offer late-night gaming; while players enjoy free drinks.

 

Facts:

 

- the country is the second-largest island in the Caribbean,  with a surface area of 48, 198 square kilometers. Located in the heart of the Caribbean, is it surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the north, and Caribbean Sea to the south

- The capitol city is Santo Domingo, which is the oldest city in the new world. It has  a population of almost 2.5 million people

- Baseball is a way of life here, and fans can watch future Major Leaguers compete in the countries professional league

- Spanish is the official language, however you'll be surprised how many local's speak English, French, German and Italian

- Dominican Peso's are the official currency, major credit cards are accepted, and ATM's are frequent in cities, as well at most resorts 

 

 

 

 

 

Trusted Saskatoon Travel Expert share some great tips on Jamaica

Great tip on Jamaica:

 

Jamaica fascinates visitors who take the time to discover its diverse ecology, fascinating history and engagingly outspoken people. The Jamaican's are very proud of both their island, and their people. Well organized tours and attractions make it easy to explore this destination. Boasting its natural diversity, the island is a magnet for bird watchers, divers and even scientists. From the high mountain peaks and its offshore coral reef, nature has created a home to hundreds of species found nowhere else on earth. 

 

 

Famous for the picture-perfect white sand beaches, here you can also find black volcanic sands, and dramatic cliff-framed coves. Inland, you will find jungled mountains and forests laced with rivers, waterfalls and medicinal hot springs. 

 

 

For the history buff, the heritage comes alive as they tour plantation houses, historic sites and rural mountain villages where you can experience the unique culture of the Maroons through drumming and storytelling.  

Jamaica's sunny tropical climate and sandy beaches are not only perfect for the beach lover, it also makes it ideal for the outdoor sports enthusiasts, such as golf. And the spectacular coral reefs make it a haven for the diver as well. Adventure doesn't even come close to stopping there. The shopping, dining and nightlife in Jamaica, are like none other. Experience fruits and vegetables you may have never tasted, as markets are piled high with exotic fruits like sweetsop and star apple. Take a sip of renowned local rums, or other homegrown beverages including Red Strip Beer, or Blue Mountain coffee.

 

 

Exchange your vows on a palm-fringed beach, or in a tropical garden. Jamaica's wedding planners can help you plan your wedding at exotic setting around the island, or say "I do" at your very own resort, with little to no worries. 

 

 

 

Facts

- Jamaica is the third largest island in the Caribbean. It is 146 miles long, and 51 miles across.

- Enjoy the hot tropical climate, with daytime temperatures around the 80's and 90's year round.

- The currency is the Jamaican dollar, but USD is widely accepted. ATM's accept most international bank cards.

- Jamaica is the largest English-speaking island in the Caribbean

- Rum is the national drink in Jamaica

- The blue mountains in Jamaica are named for the mists that often cover them, which look blue from a distance

- Was the first tropical country to enter the Winter Olympics - and apart from the US, Jamaica has won the most world and Olympic medals 

 

 

 

 

 

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