Great travel accessory

I know that we live in a modern age where you can travel paperlessly, downloading boarding passes into your cell phone or PDA.  Still, I love I miss the old days of paper tickets.  Mostly because they meant I had a reason to carry a charming travel wallet.  I love this one for it’s envelope-like design.  I could totally see myself slipping it under my arm for a night out on the town.  The red color is simply perfect for that.

One person can make a difference

I love this idea.  There are so many troubling problems in the world ~ not enough food, school or medical supplies, no clean water, no soap.  It’s daunting just thinking about it.  However, there are a few people I’ve encountered in the cyber world who took matters into their own hands and are really making a difference.  Today I’m going to share a couple and hopefully inspire you.

Pack for a PurposeI’ve written about them before on this site, but they bear a second mention simply for the amazing amount they’ve accomplished in the past year.  The idea is that a travel can spare enough packing space to take a bag of pencils, deflated soccer balls or medical supplies into areas that need them.  I’ve watched on Twitter as they’ve added destinations galore.

Clean the World – When Shawn Seipler, a frequent traveler, thought about how much hotel soap and shampoo are discarded in North America every day he realized that there was an opportunity there.  People all over the world are becoming sick because they don’t have ordinary bar soap to wash their hands.  He partnered with Paul Till to collect and recycle unused soap and shampoo from hotels.  That was in 2008.  They now they send their recycled bar soap all over the world, helping thousands avoid disease and live healthier lives.

Where shall I go?

It was 86 degrees and sultry out today, so I’m dreaming of someplace cool.  The other side of the world even.  In my search for revivification I stumbled upon the Indigo Patagonia hotel.  It is like the photographic equivalent of sticking my head in the freezer.  Located in Port Natales, Chile it overlooks a beautiful lake.  You can take a glacial cruise, kayak the fjords or do what I’d do just chill in the spa.  Unfortunately the one thing you can’t do is post any of their photos, so I’m just going to have to leave this one to your imaginations.  Enjoy!

Travel tip of the week

Airline lost your bag?  Well if you can produce receipts, you can get reimbursed for the cost of some of your loss.  However, until just this week the airlines have been able to keep that $25 bag check fee, even when they’ve lost your bag.  Crazy?  I think so.  If you are charging for a service that you don’t in the end provide, you should refund the cost of the service.  Turns out I’m not the only traveler who thinks so, and people you’ve been heard.  The Dept. of Transportation announced this week that airlines will now have to refund checked bag fees to travelers with lost luggage.  Now if only they could mandate that your luggage be found!

Great travel accessory

The flowering trees are my favorite sign of Spring.  They have me longing for picnics in the park, outdoor concerts and all the joys of Summer.  In preparation I’ve been checking out picnic sets online.  I came across a smart set by Carlina Ahlburg.  Open the lid and you’ll discover plates, forks, spoons and knives for 4.  You can use the carrier as a serving dish.  All the comforts of home in the great outdoors.

They low jack the towels?

My husband sent me a link to this hilarious article on Consumerist.com about hotels using RFID (radio frequency transmitters) on their towels to keep them from walking off.  I knew things had been bad for hotels over the past couple of years, but I had no idea they’d resort to something like this.  Just the idea of checking out of the hotel and beeping like you’ve got metal in your pockets makes me laugh out loud.  Still, it is a creative solution to sticky problem.  I mean who wants to frisk their guest before they leave?  Just remember, if you’re in Hawaii to leave that plush pink towel behind or they’ll track you down.

Where shall I go?

Maybe it was the James Bond movie I watched last weekend, but this week all I am thinking of is traveling by dhou.  You know, a sail, a river, a lazy afternoon.  There’s something about this throw back form of transport that seems so romantic.  Normally I’d recommend Egypt for this type of trip, but given the recent unrest my focus has moved over to Zanzibar (above).  Even the name rolls off the tongue like an exotic spice.

Great travel quote

The reality of flying these days is that sometimes you just can’t get where you want to go, when you want to get there.

~ Allan Chernoff, CNN

Travel tip of the week

It’s Spring Break time again and I know a lot of you are getting ready to board flights and head out.  Wanted to just give you some advice before you go.  Baggage fees are still high, often running $25 or more.  Since oil prices have been rising all Spring that doesn’t look like it’s going to change any time soon.  What can you do to save on bags?  Well you could get an airline credit card and use it to book tickets.  Continental’s card waives your baggage fees if you do this.  You could check in online and save $5 on your bag.  Frontier is doing that.  Or you could buy full fare coach (or be a frequent flyer God), and the airline will pick up your tab.  Barring that, you’re going to have to pack light, carry on and fight for overhead bin space.  Happy travels!