Safety in Adventure Tourism

In India "adventure" is the new buzzword. There are new companies opening every month. Most of the company owners are experienced professionals who have worked in the industry for many years before branching off on their own. A major of the companies in India offer safe, responsible and eco friendly adventures, which every one can and must enjoy.

Most adventure travel companies follow prescribed international guidelines for the particular sport they are involved in. However in India, other than traditional activities like mountaineering there are no standard guidelines in place for most other activities. The Ministry of Tourism is in the process of laying down guidelines for all adventure sports. Till this process is complete the trade bodies like the Indian Association of Professional Rafting Outfitters (IAPRO) and Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) play a key role in ensuring self regulation. These bodies conduct regular training camps on first aid, CPR, Mountain rescue, swift water rescue techniques and early warning systems.

Older and established rafting and trekking companies regularly conduct supervisor refresher courses for their instructors and invite overseas trainers to keep abreast with the latest in rescue techniques.

With the adventure travel industry growing leaps and bounds, it is important that as a consumer and as an operator we are aware of the current safety standards accepted worldwide and in India. The important issue here is for everyone involved to understand the sport, market it to the right people and use the right operator to execute the project.

Firstly, one has to accept that the term "adventure" it implies that there are inherent risks that are involved in the sport. Still, world over there are many more people who are injured or die from crossing roads and other such mundane activities, than from participating in adventure sports. Why is that? The way I see it is that most adventure travel companies today are aware of the risks involved and they train their staff accordingly and are always prepared with back up safety plans in case of any untoward accidents.

However, having said that, one must realize that today the potential risks in adventure travel are much higher. In an attempt to stay ahead in the market, adventure travel companies are today offering increasingly tougher and more exotic adventure trips for the clients to choose from. In the 60s and 70s only a select few were capable of trying climbing expeditions on Himalayan Summits above 7,000 mts. Today, if you have one year and USD 1, 00,000 you can easily find some one to take to the summit of Everest. Today, you can undertake first rafting descents of Grade V rivers, Heli Ski down 4000 mts peaks, walk into active volcanoes, sky dive from 25,000 ft, trek across Tibet, visit the North and South Poles and even go on a space mission, all for a price. These are just a few example selected from a wide range of insane adventures available all over the world.

Travel Insurance – A Must-Have For International Travellers

Travelling is one activity that every individual must undertake at one time or the other; it does not matter what the purpose of travel is, or whether the travel is local or international. A lot of people actually look forward to travelling to other parts of the world for various reasons and purposes, including but not limited to business, tourism, vacation, pilgrimage, education and for medical attention.

The euphoria to travel outside of one’s domain usually comes with a lot of preparations, and more often than not, a great deal of resources are deployed to ensure that the travel is actually takes place; and these include acquisition of an international passport, medical tests (where applicable), expensive visa processing fees, flight booking and hotel reservation.

A lot of people will do anything and everything just to actualise their international travel ambition. And to be very candid here, international travel is actually fun and something to look forward to. Travelling, especially international travels, is a form of education for the travellers as they have an opportunity to see new environments, meet new people, and learn how things are done elsewhere.

International travel affords the traveller a lot of opportunities irrespective of their original purpose of travel. These include business opportunities, educational opportunities, employment opportunities and even marital opportunities. Unfortunately, however, it is only these and many other opportunities that these (would-be) travellers see. They seem to be ignorant or care less about risks that are embedded in international travels, so they don’t take any steps towards mitigating such risks.

At this juncture, you may be tempted to ask the question: “What are those risks that are associated with international travels?” Very good question. Just read on, as most of those risks are discussed in the following paragraphs.

Risks Associated with International Travels

As interesting, fun, enjoyable, profitable and educative as international travels may be, they also come with their own downsides – the risks – just as every other thing in life. And very fortunately for travellers, most of these risks can be transferred to professional travel insurance providers, by way of buying a travel insurance – also referred to as “travel health insurance” or “travel medical insurance”.

These international travel risks are many and varied, and they include, but not limited to:

  • Sudden illness in the country of destination requiring urgent medical attention and/or hospitalization.
  • Involvement in an accident leading to bodily injuries, temporary or permanent disability, or death
  • Loss of checked-in baggage
  • Loss of valuable items such as international passport, drivers’ licence, national identity card, etc.
  • Personal liabilities abroad
  • Emergency dental cases
  • Hijacking
  • Arrest by law enforcement agencies requiring bail and legal defence

Another question that may be asked at this juncture is: “Do travel insurance policies cover all the above-mentioned risks?” And the answer is a big YES, and so much more.

Covers and Benefits Provided by Major Travel Insurance Policies

Below is a list of most of the covers and benefits provided by travel insurance policies – depending on the providers. So the next time you buy a travel insurance policy, look out for these covers and benefits.

  • Medical Expenses and hospitalization abroad
  • Emergency Medical Evacuation
  • Repatriation after treatment
  • Emergency dental care
  • Repatriation of family member travelling with the insured
  • Travel of one Immediate Family Member
  • Emergency Return Home following Death of Close Relative
  • Repatriation of Mortal Remains
  • Medical Assistance
  • Legal Assistance
  • Pre-Departure Services
  • International General Assistance
  • Abroad Information Assistance about lost Luggage and Passport,
  • Delivery of Medicines
  • Legal Defence
  • Advance of Bail Bond
  • Hijacking in means of Public Transport
  • Loss of Passport, driving license, national identity card abroad
  • Compensation for in-flight loss of checked-in baggage
  • Compensation for delay in the arrival of luggage
  • Delayed Departure
  • Location and forwarding of baggage and personal effects.
  • Accidental Death
  • Permanent Disability
  • Personal Civil Liability
  • Trip Cancellation Expenses

Risks Not Covered By Travel Insurance Policies

Having talked about the covers and benefits afforded by travel insurance, it is also important to consider the risks that are not covered by most of these policies, as listed below:

  • Participation in criminal acts, or as a result of his/her fraudulent, seriously negligent or reckless actions including those actions of the Insured in a state of derangement or under psychiatric treatment costs for which are themselves excluded;
  • Natural phenomena such as floods, earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, atypical cyclonic storms, falling objects from space and aerolites, and in general any extraordinary atmospheric, meteorological, seismic or geological phenomenon any other type of natural disaster;
  • Events arising from terrorism, mutiny or crowd disturbances;
  • Events or actions of the Armed Forces or Security Forces in peacetime;
  • Wars, with or without prior declaration, and any conflicts or international interventions using force or duress or military operations of whatever type.
  • Participation in bets, challenges or brawls, save in the case of legitimate defence or necessity;
  • Pre-existing Illness or injuries
  • Participation in competitions, sports, and preparatory or training tests;
  • Motor racing or motorcycle racing, horse riding, climbing, pot holing, boxing, wrestling in any of its modes, martial arts, parachuting, hot air ballooning, free falling, gliding and, in general, any sport or recreational activity that is known to be dangerous;
  • Participation in competitions or tournaments organised by sporting federations or similar organisations.
  • Hazardous winter and/or summer sports such as skiing and/or similar sports.
  • Work-related accidents
  • Internationally and locally recognized epidemics.
  • Illnesses or injuries arising from chronic ailments or from those that existed prior to the inception date of the policy;
  • Death or injuries as a result of suicide or attempted suicide or any self-inflicted injuries.
  • Illness, injuries or pathological states caused by the consumption of alcohol, drugs, toxic substances, narcotics or medicines acquired without medical prescription, as well as any kind of mental illness or mental imbalance;
  • Illness or injuries caused by pregnancy and childbirth or any complication therefore or voluntary termination of pregnancy;

Where to Buy Travel Insurances

Travel insurances can be bought online – and there are many travel insurance providers to buy from. All you need to do is locate your preferred provider, and complete the online form or questionnaire, and make your payment, and policy is made available to you for immediate printing or sent to your email address.

You can also buy travel insurance offline from a local insurance company or travel agency. whatever method of purchase you choose, you can rest assured that you will be fully protected against insurable gravel insurance risks.

Using Your Travel Insurance

After you have bought your travel insurance policy, whether it is self-purchased using the provider’s online portal, at a travel agency or through a local insurance company, you should make sure that you do not forget to take the document with you while travelling. This is so important because you may be required to produce that document by relevant bodies.

You should take particular note of your policy number (if possible copy the number somewhere else) as it will be required by the service providers to property identify you when you call them for assistance.

Another thing you should take note of on your travel insurance certificate or policy document is the Assistance Company’s telephone numbers that you need to call when you need help. These numbers are always conspicuously written on the travel insurance document – so take note of them.

You should endeavour to read as much of the document as possible so as to understand the covers provided, the terms and conditions of the policy as well as its exclusions. And very importantly, when making a claim on your policy, be honest and avoid every form of fraudulent practices.

Summary and Conclusion

There are other benefits that travel insurance policies provide which cannot be exhaustively discussed here. But having read the few benefits discussed above, you will agree that really, Travel Insurance is a must-have for a successful trip. So the next time you are planning an international travel, make the purchase of a travel insurance a top priority. It is quite affordable, and anyone can buy it. The peace of mind and the protection it will afford you are enormous.

Kerala Houseboat Cruise: Amazingly Wonderful Experience

Kerala is blessed with vast areas of backwaters and the state has utilized it to hold its prestige and economy in the world level. Thanks to tourism policy of the state and active participation from the private and semi-private business ventures, Kerala Houseboats have become the pride of the sate among the travelers and tourists across the world. It is an amazingly wonderful experience to cruise in a houseboat to explore the tranquil Kerala backwaters. Speaking specifically about houseboats, there is huge number of them serving specific purposes. Thus, families, friends, co-workers, couples, honeymooners etc. can find a suitable houseboat to celebrate their occasions. Every houseboat is built in perfect style and is highly equipped to fulfill even the smallest requirements of their guests.

Specialties of a Houseboat

Kerala Houseboats are the modern forms of ‘Kettuvallams’ used in olden times to move cargo across the region. In olden times, they were mainly used for transportation between villages in the region. Over the years, these ‘Kettuvallams’ underwent a lot of changes in look and style, but the basic construction principles remain same. Only natural materials are used to construct Kerala Houseboats. Coir made from coconut fiber is used to fasten planks in a houseboat and not even single nail is used in the construction. All the boats are well furnished, neat and highly exuberant to provide awesome experience for the travelers.

A Kerala Houseboat Trip

Kerala is adorned with natural beauty and backwaters of the state play an important role in shaping the beauty of the state. A Kerala Houseboats tour provides tourists to explore the natural beauty of the state from its natural surroundings. Water lilies, floating and gliding swans, coconuts plantations, temples, Chinese fishing nets, busy village life etc. thrills you on a houseboat trip. Every houseboat in Kerala keep up world class standards therefore, includes well furnished bed rooms that suit your celebrating mood, facilities for indoor games, homely food and more. Houseboats with single bed rooms are meant for couples and honeymooners and those with two or more bed rooms are specially designed to accommodate touring families, friends, corporate companies etc. You can select houseboat as per your preference and requirements. If you are a team, select the houseboat that can accommodate all your members. The crew of boats is always at your service to make your trip a memorable one.

Kerala has rich source of backwaters and Alleppey backwaters is the most famous among them. Thousands of tourists flock towards Alleppey to have a memorable houseboat tour every month. You can also book your trip online or call the service to make sure you have a houseboat trip while you visit Kerala. You can choose your houseboat as per your budget and preferences. You can also cancel your trip even at the last moment and the money paid will be refunded as per the refund policy of the service provider. Plan your holiday tour in advance and visit Alleppey to enjoy a houseboat trip.

Singapore Hotels Are Known Globally For Luxurious Accommodation Facilities

Singapore tourism competes well with its regional rival cities such as Bangkok, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Shanghai. Singapore being a city-state in style of Greek city states visits travelers from around the world. The transformation of a commercial city Singapore to a popular tourist destination has been made possible by governmental efforts. The government has announced that the city area would be transformed into a more exciting place by lighting up the civic and commercial buildings.

Singapore is showing a unique model of successful development. Consisting of 63 islands including mainland Singapore. With human maneuvering and natural beauty endowed to Singapore by nature, Singapore tourism is an exciting traveling experience. With sophistication in medical facilities and amenities wide number of tourists coming for medical checksups and operations. Recent trends show Singapore is developing itself as a medical tourism center in East Asia approaching nearly USD 3 billion in revenue.

'The Merlion,' a popular tourist attraction in Singapore was designed as an emblem for the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) in 1964 by Mr Fraser Brunner. Some major tourist attractions in Singapore like Singapore Zoo, CHIJMES – The Singapore Art Museum, Clarke Quay, St Josephs Church, Fort Siloso, Little India, Chinatown Heritage Center, Changi Village, etc. offer enthralling tourism experience to travelers are known globally.

Singapore is dotted with numerous tourist attractions such as Statues of Sir Stamford Raffles, Changi Chapel and Museum, Sentosa Island, East Coast Park, and many others. Accommodation facilities in Singapore are of international standard and match to best hospitality standard world over. Hotels in Singapore offer comprehensive range of accommodation facilities to travelers at affordable tariff. Moreover, various luxury hotels in Singapore are preferred accommodation for business travelers.

Star Singapore hotels such as Amara Hotel, Carlton Hotel, Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Marina Mandarin Hotel, Pan Pacific Singapore Hotel, Hotel 1929, Link Hotel, the Elizabeth-A Far East Hotel, Traders Hotel, Aspinals Hotel, and many others with standard accommodation facilities and amenities. Our Singapore hotels list enables you to choose the best possible option for staying in Singapore.

Singapore hotels such as Fragrance Hotel, Fragrance Hotel – Ruby, Fragrance Hotel – Sapphire, Garden Hotel, Hotel 81 Orchid, Albert Court Hotel, Hotel 81 Gold, Hotel 81 Hollywood, Chiat, Fragrance Backpackers Hostel, and many others offer fascinating range of accommodation facilities to travelers at affordable tariff. Additional requirements of accommodations are being fulfilled by various hostels run by YMCA and YWCA.

Star hotels in Singapore offer facilities such as round the clock room service, airport pick & drop, swimming pool, internet, bar, gym, restaurant, massage center, conferencing facilities, and many others.

Hawaii Tour – Exciting and Thrilling

A vacation to Hawaii can be sheer fun if quality transportation and accommodation facilities are available. Hawaii has an array of assets to make your visit memorable. It ensures that the visitors' plate in Hawaii is always full of experiences.

Hawaii tour is exciting and thrilling for anyone willing to go to different places of the island. Things to do here surpass what one would expect of a typical tourist spot. Hawaii provides an opportunity to enjoy some wonderful time, visit exquisite beaches and serene landscapes, and meet people from different cultures. Hawaii is a potpourri of old and new. While the exterior and life of the Hawaiians seem to be modern, people here are still imbibed with tradition and cultural values.

One of the must-visit places to visit while on Hawaii tour is Oahu island. The place has plenty of beautiful scenic vistas that resemble some of the best movie sets you have ever seen. That's because some movies have been shot in these islands out of which Jurassic Park and The Lost World are the most popular ones. Due to the unique landscape of the island, tourists can have wonderful views of different places of the island.

For many tourists, Oahu is a wonderland, filled with charm and beauty. The impressive sea life and underwater beauty offer immense pleasure. Oahu offers plenty of activities which never allow you to get bored. You get to see serene aquatic life including an encounter with water animals ranging from sharks to dolphins. You can enjoy activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, surfing, windsurfing, swimming, jet skiing, para sailing and wave running. People have immense pleasure riding the waves of Oahu.

For couples celebrating their weddings and anniversaries in Hawaii, an area that stands among the top destinations for romantic getaways – the term romantic vacation has a totally new meaning. Through the tropical land of Oahu, loving couples can enjoy long romantic swims in insular bays and coves, or hit the beach for aquatic fun in the company of other water lovers.

Some attractions in Oahu such as Iolani Palace tell visitors the meaning of royalty. It is the only one of its type in the United States. This makes the Iolani Palace a national treasure and a must visit place. At one point in time, it was considered the political front and property of Hawaii. The Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve, located in southern Oahu, is a must go for all swimmers. It is one of the best known destinations for snorkeling. The bay offers colorful tropical fish, coral reefs and clear water. Pearl Harbor is the site where Japan attacked US naval base in the Second World War. There are several memories here reminding of the most infamous date in the US history.

Hawaii is well-known for its accommodation and transportation services. Standard of transportation services is quite high with some quality transport companies offering excellent taxi and limousine services Oahu Circle Island Tour . Greeting the visitors at the airport, they provide quality services to groups to make them enjoy a comfortable riding experience from airport. Online booking of these services makes it more convenient to enjoy a hassle free trip. Using internet, you can visit some reputable websites and get a suitable deal matching your budget.

Things to Do on Holiday in Ireland

Ireland is becoming hugely popular with families looking to stay in holiday cottages and farmhouses rentals. Families come to Ireland for the world famous Guinness and the Irish people are renowned for their friendliness.

Many tourists return to Ireland year after year and use these holiday homes as a base to explore Ireland and are enchanted by some of the coastal villages and rolling hills. The Emerald Isle, Dublin, Cork and Belfast are just a few of the popular locations families come to and stay in one of the many holiday homes.

Dublin is an extremely popular capital city; tourists come here on vacation or for long weekend breaks. Many couples come here on a romantic break and choose to say in a holiday cottage or self catering apartment which is available to rent direct from the holiday home owner. Cork is another popular holiday home destination, families return to Cork year after year to stay in one of its charming country cottages.

When visiting Belfast, you must also visit Donegall Square and see City Hall. Ulster Museum has remnants from the Armada shipwreck, the Early Ireland Gallery and Irish antiquities. There is an Irish collection of about 20,000 volumes in the Linen Hall Library. Tourist can stay in large country farm house or beautiful holiday cottage and sample some of the local pubs. Crown Liquor Saloon is the most popular pub in Belfast.

There are several musical programs in the Grand Opera House. There are tropical plants like banana, sugar and coffee in the Palm House. There is a high walkway in the Tropical Ravine. The architecture of the Queen’s University is well worth a glance. Beautiful mosaics can be seen in St. Anne’s Cathedral. This is an Anglican church. Near to all of these attractions are beautiful holiday homes and self catering apartments available to rent.

There are pubs, entertainment venues, galleries and restaurants in the Golden Mile. Several murals are painted on buildings in Culturlann Macadam O’Fiaich. Murals also exist in the Fernhill house. These are regarding the Protestants who live in the Shankill district. There are forty endangered species in the Belfast Zoo. The Belfast Castle offers a comprehensive view of the city.

Another reason why families come to Ireland and stay in a rented holiday cottage or apartment is the golf. Ireland is home to more than four hundred golf courses. Players of any skill level can adjust themselves to these. These courses offer scenery, challenge, design and a unique location. In Ireland, golfing is the biggest single sport holiday enticement. Many courses are pay and play ones.

This island is a paradise for keen fishermen. The coastline extends over 3,000 miles. The riverbank is 7,000 miles. In the countryside, there are hundreds of bogs and lakes. Fishing has become an interesting activity due to low levels of pollution and moderate climate. There is a high yearly rainfall to maintain the levels of the streams, rivers, lakes and inland bogs. You can find sea trout, lake or brown, there are also fresh water fish and pike. The marine environment in Ireland is warmed by the Atlantic drift. So, it supports warm and cold water species. For sea fishing, there are more than eighty species of salt water fish. For coarse fishing, there are tench, eel, perch, rudd, roach, bream and pike. For game fishing, there are sea trout, trout and salmon. The fishermen can stay in a country cottage or farmhouse whilst on vacation in Ireland.

Summer Holidays in Tuscany

Summer is a great time to travel and spend your holidays in the places we want.

In Italy one of the regions most frequented by tourists from around the world is certainly the Tuscany region in summer. It is famous in the world for many aspects: cities, art, the beauty of the rural areas, exclusive seaside resorts and also for fine food and wine.

Between the cities of Tuscany, the most visited one is definitely Florence.

Florence is the capital of Tuscany. Every year this city is visited by millions of tourists most of which come during the summer. After the heat the historic center of Florence is full of people. They follow the routes of major tours and important monuments and gather in the streets and squares of the old town in the summer.

This famous Italian city offers the opportunity to visit monuments and unique works of art of great historical and artistic value. Florence also offers a great choice for lovers of good food and good wines that are produced not far from the city in the popular countryside of Chianti.

In Tuscany ,ides Florence, there are other important cities renamed for their artistic beauty. Among these there is Siena, Pisa, Lucca and many other ancient and medieval villages. These places represent exceptional testimonials of a past and are one of the richest and full of the history of centuries.

Those who love the beauty, moreover to the art, Tuscany can offer the magnificent countryside. For those who love to spend their summer holidays in seaside resorts is the perfect place.

Nature lovers can choose from many types of locations, ranging from hilly areas that offer scenic views and even more mountainous areas that reach over a thousand meters high.

There are also flat rural areas which offer the opportunity to spend relaxation time immersed in a wild nature and, suddenheless, fascinating with its beautiful landscapes.

Even those who love to spend their summer vacation by the sea has a huge selection. The area of ​​Versilia offers large and comfortable beaches with excellent facilities. In Versilia there are famous resorts of Forte dei Marmi, Pietrasanta and Viareggio.

This area has become famous for being frequented by the VIPs and not only Italians. These places have a huge choice of hotels, restaurants, bars and discos that enliven the days and nights of summer. For those who prefer to experience the sea in the most savage way, down the coastal area to the south you are kindly to encounter areas characterized by excellent reefs with possibilities to enjoy underwater fishing.

Whatsoever, Tuscany also offers to spend holidays in great, charming and beautiful islands such as Elba and the island of Giglio. These places are designed for boat lovers who can spend wonderful time in the search of hidden coves and beaches accessible only by sea.

4 Exciting Activities for Your Holiday in Morzine

When you decide to go to Morzine for your holiday, you may well want to stay in a catered chalet. Morzine has a number of these to choose from, and it can provide you with the freedom and comfort you need to enjoy your stay there even more.

But when you arrive in Morzine, what can you get up to? Skiing is the main attraction in the winter, and mountain biking in the summer. But there are plenty of other things to do here for everyone.

Here are four of the best to keep you busy during your time here.

1. Fishing

Morzine joins a lot of fishing enthusiasts, mainly for the excellent trout fishing on offer here.
One of the best places to go fishing is the River Dranse, but another place that may be worth visiting is Lake Montriond. Something to remember, though, is that you will need a fishing permit, and you can get one of these to a day or for your entire holiday.

2. Horse Riding

There is no better way to see the surrounding countryside of the Morzine area than by Horseback. Luckily, in Morzine there are plenty of opportunities to go horse riding. You can choose a number of places to organize your adventure, including Parc des Dérêches and the Ranch de l'Avenir. You can also choose to go donkey trekking if you prefer, so there is plenty on offer whatever experience you are looking for.

3. Swimming

If you want to freshen up and go for a swim then you'll have plenty of opportunities during your time in your catered chalet. Morzine has a huge outdoor pool next to the Palais des Sports, so if you head during the summer this will be at your disposal. It is the ideal way to cool off after an energetic day's cycling in the summer day.

4. Rock Climbing

There are some excellent opportunities for anyone who wants to go rock climbing whilst on a holiday staying in a catered chalet. Morzine has a number of challenging routes on offer, many of which are found on the Pas de l'Ours cliff. If you'd prefer to practice on an indoor climbing wall to start with, or the weather is too bad to go outside, you can find an excellent wall inside the Palais des Sport.

Get Active in Morzine

There are plenty of things to do in Morzine when you book a stay in a catered chalet. Morzine is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, and the above is just a small selection of all the things that there is to do during your time here. So get searching for your perfect chalet and start looking forward to your holiday!

Traveling With Special Circumstances

In the National Lampoon Vacation movies anything that can go wrong to Chevy Chase does. The hotel is not as described in the brochure, the car is too small and the amusement park is closed; the list could go on. With the introduction of the Internet into the average American home, planning vacations has become easier than ever. Incidentally, when vacationing we all have special circumstances, including children, pets, disabilities or medical requirements. And sometimes your destination makes all the difference.

These are the answers to a few frequently asked travel questions, and tips to remember when traveling with special circumstances.

Flying . Flying has become one of the most common forms of travel, but as airlines get bigger they need to accommodate a larger number of people and their demands.

Flying With Children . Always inform the airline you are traveling with children when you by your tickets. Reservations for infants and children under 2 can not be made on most online travel sites. You must contact the airline directly.

    • Newborns . Most airlines will not allow a child under seven-days old to travel on any plane. Often if the child is that young they will also require a doctor's permission slip.
    • Small Children . There is usually two options when traveling with small children, lap or buy a seat. If the child is less than 2-years old they can sit in your lap for domestic flights. Most airlines do not charge for lap children. However, if you feel more comfortable, you can buy a seat and place the child in an FAA approved restraint. Buying a ticket for these children is usually discounted substantively and most car seats are approved. Double-check the airline for FAA requirements. All international flights require children to be in restrictions.

Unaccompanied Minors . It's not uncommon for children to fly alone. Many are seasoned travelers bouncing between parents, friends or relatives. Most airlines will take responsibly of minors for a fee. The cost is usually between $ 50 and $ 100 depending on the airline. Additionally, the age requirements may differ. For most, children between the ages of 5 and 7 are only allowed on direct flights. Children between 8 and 14 can fly on connecting flights. The age when children are not required an escort depends on the airline. For example, Delta requires all children under the age of 14 to have an escort whereas with United, children over 12 it's optional.

Pets . Many airlines accommodate animals of different sizes. You can take them as carry-on, checked as baggage or shipped. Some states require a health certificate. It is suggested to have all veterinary paper work available including shots. Always call the airline or check their website before booking your ticket. Some are more restrictive than others.

Most animals must be 8 to 12-weeks old to fly. The American Veterinary Medical Association suggests not to sedate cats and dogs. This may effect their natural equilibrium and cause injury. Many of these tips and suggestions are for domestic flights in the 48 continental United States. International restrictions and fares may vary.

    • Carry-on . Carry on pets must be small enough to fit into a kennel under the seat in front of you. There is usually a fee of about $ 50 to $ 100 per animal. Most airlines only accept cats and dogs. Delta will also accept, birds, ferrets, rabbits, hamsters and guinea pigs, whereas, SouthWest does not accept pets of any kind.
    • Checked Baggage . Larger warm-blooded mammals and birds are usually checked as baggage. Animals must be in comfortable kennels and are taken at the check-in counter and retrieved in baggage claim. They are safely placed under the plane in a pressurized and heated compartment. There is usually a $ 100 charge for checking your animal. Sometimes it is more difficult for baggage handlers to get your pet to your connecting flight. When booking your flight remember to give yourself between one and three hour layover.
    • Air Cargo . Many airlines have cargo services. This is for those shipping pets to friends or family without their owner. Rates depend on size and destination of the animal. Check your carrier's website for further details. Always include identification tags with your address and phone number as well as the address and phone number of the person receiving the animal. Additionally, do not put a leash or muzzle on the animal, this may cause a choking hazard.

Disabilities . All airlines are dedicated to making everyone's travel comfortable. Most airlines are wheelchair accessible and willing to work with people with all kinds of disabilities. Always inform the airline if you or a loved one has special needs prior to departure. This allows the staff to prepare for your accommodations.

Many airlines can provide Braille safety cards, captioned safety videos, individual safety briefings, onboard wheelchairs and more. Guide dogs are usually accepted as checked baggage and do not require a fee. Many airlines will also accommodate those with food allergies or related illnesses like diabetes.

Hotels and Cars . Always contact your hotel or rental company to make special arrangement regarding lodging and transportation. Most hotels and car companies will try to accommodate you in all ways. When traveling with special circumstances like children, pets or disabilities, always take your hotel and on-ground travel arrangements into account.

If you plan to take the family dog ​​on vacation with you, keep a few things in mind when booking your lodging. Although the hotel may accept pets, ask where they stay, in the room or in a hotel kennel. Furthermore, find out if the hotel offers walking services. If you are sightseeing all day, you do not want your poor pup stuck in the room needing to visit the grassy knoll across the street.

For small children, most hotels can provide a playpen or crib for them to sleep in. Many car rental companies can also provide car seats and additional child restraints.

Cruises . Pets are not loud on most cruise liners; however, children are. Most cruises provide several forms of entertainment for children while at sea. If you decide to cruise with children always look into the liner's child services prior to booking a room.

    • Children and Young Adults . There are usually several free, child-friendly activities previously planned by the cruise liner to keep kids and young adults busy. Activities include arts and crafts, movies, games and child friendly pools. Sometimes the cruise liner will have teen dances and teen specialized activities.
    • Children under Two . Children under 2-years old are not usually eligible for activities. However, most liners offer babysitting services from about $ 6 to $ 10 an hour.
    • Disabilities . Many cruise liners try to accommodate those with disabilities to the best of their ability. All floors have elevators and are wheelchair accessible. Those in wheelchairs, requiring oxygen tanks or health requirements usually board and disembark before the general public. Those with sight or hearing disabilities may need to make extra special arrangement with the liner prior to purchasing tickets.

Traveling in today's day and age can be a tricky business. There are so many circumstances to take into account. Always remember airlines, hotels, car rentals and cruises are extremely in the hospitality business. They understand there are special circumstances and all are fully trained to accommodate you and your loved ones.

Top Ten Tips For the Best Road Trip Ever

There is nothing more fun than an old-fashioned road trip. I love taking to the open road and exploring our country. Now, I've been a "road tripper" for some time and because I love air travel, I love the road trip because that's how you can really experience the country. So it's time to get your favorite tunes and munchies ready and plan your open road trip adventure with these ten easy road trip travel tips.

1. Plan your trip. First, you need to determine where you're going to go and then plan your trip. Planning does not have to take a long time, but you do need to know the route you're going to drive and points of interest along the way that you're going to want to stop and explore. Half the fun of a road trip is seeing the sites along the way. I like to MapQuest my trip and have that as my main plan of attack for my road trip. GPS is very popular these days and I recommend them, but you can not always rely on them when you hit construction zones or accidents on your journey. That's why it's essential that you have a real map with you for the areas you'll be traveling to and plan alternate routes if necessary.

2. Make your hotel reservations BEFORE you go. Part of the fun when traveling on the road is stopping where your heart desires, but there's nothing worse than a "no room at the inn" experience on a road trip. You may not realize that there is a "Comic Book Trade Show," "Strawberry Festival" or convention in town while you're visiting and there are no rooms to be had. If you do not book your reservations in advance, not only are you running the risk of having to sleep in your car but also you can not manage your road trip budget effectively. If you're traveling with your family or a group of friends, considering staying at an all-suite hotel or even renting a time share, a great option for families taking a road trip. Did you know that 90 percent of people who own a timeshare do not use it on a regular basis? Many great offers can be found at some of the larger hotel chains that offer timeshares and many of them even have a washer and dryer. For my trip to Scottsdale, I booked a fantastic one-bedroom suite with a kitchenette at a time share property directly through the hotel for just $ 100 / night including tax at the Sheraton Desert Oasis Villas.

3. Give your car a full tune up before you go or consider renting a car. One week before you go on your road trip, take your car in for a tune up and ask your mechanic to ensure the car fluids are topped, air pressure in your tires is at its best for highway driving, and any other necessary concerns regarding your vehicle are addressed. Should you need to get something fixed, it is best to do it at a place you can trust before your road trip. Plus, it can be more expensive when it is a have-to situation. Also, make sure you pack a roadside safety kit just in case of an emergency. For me that kit includes my American Automobile Association membership card (Premier Membership). If you have a car that is no longer under warranty or has automatic roadside assistance, then a American Automobile Association membership is a necessity as it will save you a fortune in the unfortunate event you have a break down and have to have your car towed. If you're at all worried that your current vehicle is not "road trip worthy," then you may want to consider renting a vehicle for your road trip. I did this for my trip to Arizona as I found a great deal on a rental car and had the peace of mind for my road trip.

4. Pack your own food and plan a picnic. I used to be addicted to stopping at fast food joints on a road trip. There was something that felt fun about that on a trip but I've since learned that I prefer to pack my own food for my journey. It does not just keep me eating healthy, but it also saves money, too, especially if you're traveling with your family. Also, if you plan ahead, you may find that there is a great stop for a scenic picnic in your travels and packing a picnic is so much better than flying through the drive-through. If you do make a stop, either for a picnic or to explore a cool sight along the way.

5. Bring great music or audible books with you! Music is truly the soundtrack of our lives and every road trip needs a soundtrack. I think of my trip to Seattle every time I hear a Phil Collins song from "No Jacket Required" because that was the primary music I was listening to on that trip. I think of the Bahamas Harbor Island and the amazing walks on the Pink Sands Beach every time I hear Wilson Phillips music. It's sort of like having a theme song for every vacation but hearing the music even today will evoke fun memories of wonderful trips. I also love catching up on books I'd like to read but somehow find it easier to listen to. That's where audio books come in and you can download them to your mp3 player, iPhone, or other PDA device. !

6. Do not forget to pack a boredom buster bag for the kids. One thing I've learned from producing for TV's "The Travel Mom" ​​Emily Kaufman, is that if you're traveling with kids, you need to make sure you have plenty to entertain them during your road trip. She calls this the boredom buster bag. Do not forget to pack some kid music your children like along with fun travel games that include magnetic board games. DVD players are an option for really long trips and as long as your child is not prone to car sickness. Of course, electronic games will keep your kids occupied but I would encourage you to limit the time on these toys especially if you're traveling through some great scenic areas. It's an excellent chance to bond as a family and your child's memory of the trip will be lost if they're lost in a Game Boy.

7. Remember, a road trip is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. One of my all time favorite road trips was the day my niece, Jessica, and I drove 52 enchanting miles on the "Road to Hana" on the island of Maui in Hawaii. I'll never forget that the guide book said, "Remember, Hana is not a destination, it's a journey." Hana is located about 52 miles from Kahului, however a typical trip to Hana takes at least three hours, as the road is very winding with approximately 620 curves over 59 bridges, 46 of which have only one-lane. This delightful road trip is a memorable journey that winds through a lush, tropical rain forest that is laced with tumbling waterfalls, black sand beaches, scenic lava cliffs, fresh fruit stands, and tropical hillsides. Jessica and I stopped at least ten times including one stop to picnic on that black sand beach. We took photos by waterfalls, delicious fruit stands and beautiful tropical flower gardens. You should treat your road trip vacation the same way we did our road to Hana: Enjoy your road trip as a journey, not a destination.

8. Make good use of every stop. I like to plan my stops for fuel, food, and restrooms so that I utilize my time efficiently and do not waste time making three stops instead of one. Probably the most important thing is that every time you do stop, make sure everyone in the car uses the restroom (even if they think they do not have to right then). This will cut down on the stops you'll make only for that purpose. Also, if you're traveling with kids, and you just need to stop for the restroom, I recommend stopping at a Starbucks. Parents can get a coffee or an ice tea, the restrooms are clean, and there are not a lot of distractions for kids (like toys to buy) that a truck stop or gas station may have. Use the Starbucks store locator at their website to help you plan your stops before you go. Do be a "good egg" and make a purchase at Starbucks while you're there.

9. Avoid Trouble. When you're on a road trip, you need to be street wise. Do not be a target for crime by leaving your valuables on the seat in your car (DVD players, Game Boys, etc.) and do not advertise you're on a road trip with pillows and blankets every where. When you park your car, hide your valuables and road trip creature comforts. If you are proactive at keeping your "I'm on a road trip clues" clearly hidden, any thief or troublemaker should just walk right by your car. Other street wise considerations is to always park where there is good light and foot traffic and make sure your windows are rolled up and the doors are locked whenever you leave your car. You may also want to purchase items like "the Club" if you like that extra insurance for safety. Finally, when you're driving, watch your speed. Speeding gives you the chance to get a ticket and more importantly, it decrees your time to react if the need should arise. If you are the driver, you are responsible for your passengers. When you see signs that say, "Speed ​​limits are photo enforced," believe them. Other good driving tips include avoiding rush hour, especially in larger cities, and whenever possible take turns driving with other people in the car. You'll also want to avoid driving at night if you are not familiar with your surroundings.

10. Get a Go City Card and save up to 55% on attractions and theme parks at your vacation destination. Last year, I flew my 8-year-old niece, Alexis, and 10-year-old nephew, Tyler, out to Los Angeles for their spring break (using Southwest Airlines Reward Miles, of course) and we took a road trip down to San Diego. That's when I discovered the money saving Go City Card for San Diego. With this card, I saved hundreds of dollars in submissions to Legoland, the Wild Animal Park, the San Diego Zoo and other attractions including a Whale Watch on the Pacific Ocean just by purchasing a Go San Diego Card.

Instead of paying individually for each local attraction, you pay one price for up to 40 attractions (depending on the city your visiting) and you get to create your own experience, tailoring your activities based on what you like to do, while also enjoying tremendous savings. For example, with the Go Los Angeles Card , you can choose one, two, three, five, or seven day cards at a low, pre-paid price to gain access to 40 included attractions. This saves up to 55% compared to buying tickets directly at Universal Studios Hollywood, LEGOLAND California, Knott's Berry Farm, Paramount Studios, the Queen Mary, and many more attractions. Go City Cards are available in many cities and vacation destinations in the US including Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Las Vegas, New York City, San Diego, San Francisco, Honolulu, Orlando, Miami, Seattle, Blue Ridge and even Toronto.

Final Tips: Do not forget your cell phone and make sure you're "hands free" when you do use it while driving. In many states, it's the law, but it's also down right dangerous. Always use your cell phone "hands free" when you drive. Do not forget to update your software on your mobile before you leave because you do not want to be charged higher rates for roaming charges. Finally, it's a real good idea to email a copy of your itinerary to other family members or friends in case of an emergency – this is especially a good idea for women traveling together. Now, drive safe and have fun!

You can get more details at my website at Best-Travel-Deals-Tips.com .