Picking one hotel to suit all of your needs in a sea of (sometimes) hundreds can seem like a daunting task to even the most experienced traveler. Whether you’re traveling domestically or abroad, ensuring your stay will be comfortable is an understanding concern. Here are 5 Hotel Tips From An Ex-Hotel Worker, so you’ll never have to feel like you’re drowning in hotel hell again.
Working at hotels has given me a unique view into people’s lives. I’ve heard travel horror stories from dozens of people – everything from simple lost luggage to your hotel neighbor being a human trafficker. Travel itself isn’t dangerous, but life, in general, can be . You always need to play it safe. Just like you wouldn’t get into a strangers’ car at home, you probably shouldn’t do it in Panama either.
Travel can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. My first solo trip was a 4-night stay at a 5-star hotel that totaled around $4,000 by the time I checked out. Flash forward to my 2016 trip to Costa Rica, which topped off around $1200 for 4-nights at a 5-star hotel. HUGE difference!
Whether you want to bask in the sun, surf the Pacific, hike a volcano, or zipline through a dense jungle – Costa Rica has something for everyone. Nestled between Nicaragua and Panama in Central America, lies the beautiful and welcoming country of Costa Rica.
On top of the wide array of adventure (and relaxing) activities available, this country could not be easier to travel to. If you’re American, then you’re in luck – I didn’t have to exchange a dime of my US currency!
As a natural-born planner, the hardest thing for me to do is veer off course of a well thought out plan. But guess what? Life happens! Things are always going to come up that you didn’t plan for. A lot of unnecessary anxiety can be completely bypassed by going in the with right mindset. Plan to change your plans!
Working my way into the blogosphere has been uphill climb (I still have a LONG way to go), and the plan I have now is completely different from what I started with. When I jumped into this world head-first I never imagined, nor could have imagined, the roadblocks I would hit.
Last week I was lucky enough to dine at Club A Steakhouse to celebrate my brother’s birthday. This place just oozes class. Nestled in Midtown East, this steakhouse boasts sultry red hues, dark wood, and low lighting that pairs perfectly with live jazz music and big juicy steaks. They even printed special menus that said ‘Happy Birthday’ at the top for us!
I’ve been to a fair amount of top-rated steakhouses in the city, and this one is definitely towards the top of my favorites list so far. The steaks were cooked to a perfect medium-rare, all the side dishes were excellent (we tried them all), and they had a great choice of wines to boot!
I love that they top all of their steaks with little plastic cows stating the meat temperature too. It was nice not having to guess if everyone got the right steak (come on, you know you’re never really sure). Some people might think it’s tacky, but I thought it was a nice touch.
Nothing bums me out more than when you have a delicious steak with mediocre side dishes. Not a problem here – this place had the best of both worlds! You need to try their maple and lemon charred brussel sprouts – it’s non-negotiable. They are to die for! I could swear their mashed potatoes were laced with truffle oil too… So. Freaking. Good.
Learning through other’s mistakes is something that many of us have trouble doing. There’s something in most of us that makes us feel the need to learn the hard way, whether consciously or not. When it comes to traveling on foreign soil, ‘learning the hard way’ doesn’t sound very appealing to me – at all. I’ve compiled a list of itinerary planning tips from the pros, so you don’t have to!
Make an inspiration board
Don’t: Whatever you do, don’t only plan based on your current knowledge and desires. You might miss out on somewhere you really wanted to experience.
Do: Use a site like Pinterest to discover new places and get a handle on your mood for the trip. Spend several weeks just pinning and get inspired.
Minimize culture shock and keep things interesting on an around-the-world trip.
Don’t: If you live in New York, don’t start somewhere remote with a completely different culture – like Cambodia. Save that for later in the itinerary.
Do: If you live in New York, do start with a city that has a culture like yours like London or Paris. This eases the culture shock and keeps things more exciting.
Use a map to plan your route – it will save you money.
Don’t : New Zealand -> London -> Spain -> Russia -> Croatia -> Australia
This will waste an incredible amount of money on long distance flights that are unnecessary.
Do: London -> Spain -> Croatia -> Russia -> Australia -> New Zealand
This will maximize your savings and time spent on the ground instead of in the air.
Get it down on paper and research flights.
Don’t: Keep your itinerary in your head.
Do: Get your itinerary on paper or in a spreadsheet. Research the execution of your trip.
You might discover an unavoidable layover in Switzerland for your flight from Croatia to Thailand, like I did. Now I’m incorporating 2 weeks in Switzerland since I’ll be stopping there anyway. Plus I hear that everywhere in Switzerland looks good enough to be on a post card!
Don’t plan too much
Don’t: If you think planning every second of your trip is a good idea, think again. There’s nothing that can sour a trip faster than missing out on scheduled activities. Save yourself the money and stress.
Do: Come up with a loosely structured plan and list of places you want to see. For example, book your flight, hotel, other transportation and a main event. Have a list of places you want to see and their location handy so you can see what you feel like doing once you get there. If it’s a rainy day you might choose a museum instead of a walking tour of cheese shops. Go with the flow baby!
Hey dolls! I’m in a planning frenzy with an upcoming last-minute trip to my first natural wonder on the world next week (YAY!!!), but I wanted to make sure to drop a line to all of you! With all the itinerary research I’ve done I was inspired to lend you a helping hand with your own itinerary planning.
If traveling makes nervous because of navigating foreign terrain, then Rome2Rio will change your life (even if it doesn’t make you nervous its amazing). This easy-to-use website makes getting from point A to point B nearly effortless. You can make vague searches for general information by typing in a city, but you can also be as specific as a hotel name or landmark.
With the simple press of a button you can discover every mode of transportation available in the areas specified (even how long it would take to walk) anywhere in the world, the average cost, and even train, ferry or bus schedules. Not only does Rome2Rio show you a list view – it also shows you on a map! As a visual person, the map view makes it easier for me to scope out the trip.
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