Travel Confidently: Tips from Fellow Explorers

Posted on May 10th, 2024 in Travel Tips

When you travel with Holiday Vacations, we take care of all the planning so you can simply pack your bags and enjoy every moment of exploring a new destination. However, we know that packing and preparing efficiently for your trip can sometimes feel overwhelming. You may have questions such as, “What will the weather be like on my trip? How many bags should I bring? What if my luggage gets lost?” Whether you’re a first-time traveler or an experienced globetrotter, it’s completely normal to have questions when preparing for your adventure. But in the words of famous fictious character Mrs. Doubtfire, “Help is on the way, dear!”

We asked members of our Holiday Travelers Club – all of whom have taken at least one tour with us – to share their best travel advice. Whether you’re looking for guidance on packing or simply how to make the most of your tour, they have you covered with a plethora of fantastic tips! Of course, our expert team is always here for you, but there’s something special about receiving pointers from fellow travelers who have embarked on the same tour you’re about to. We’ve compiled these valuable tips for you to conveniently browse below so you can feel more confident than ever for your next trip!

General Tips

  • “Get Global Entry/TSA pre-check. We got ours for free through our credit card. It is a game changer.” – Erika C.
  • “Be sure your passport is up to date, doesn’t expire for a minimum of six months, and has at least two empty pages. Make copies of your passport and ID and bring them along in all your bags – checked, carry-on, and personal – in case one gets lost.” – Combination of tips from Janet L., Cheryl & Gene M., and Jackie B.
  • “Call your lifetime friend and say where shall we go this year? Traveling with a friend makes any trip more enjoyable and special!” – Combination of tips from Kathy B. and Laura N.
  • “Look over your itinerary, travel documents, places tour will visit, research what the area has to offer, keep a small note pad with your special notes on things you may want to look for when you are walking and shopping in museums, visitor centers and landmarks.” – Combination of tips from Carl H. and Kathy C.
  • “Leave a copy of your travel itinerary at home for family members to know where you are each day, so they can read and follow along on your trip.” – Cheryl & Gene M.
  • “If taking Alaska land/cruise take land first. Meet people on land trip then you know everyone on cruise trip.” – Diane M.
  • “Keep a ‘go bag’ with all your travel essentials and toiletries. Refill/sanitize everything when you return home, then you’re ready for your next adventure minus clothing and trip-specific items.” – Leslie M.
  • “Plan ahead to have cash for gratuities for the Tour Director and motorcoach driver. It’s nice to take thank you cards for them as well!” – Combination of tips from Dean B. and Linda B.
  • “Something I live by are trip lists with expenses, packing lists, etc. I can look back on previous trip notes to improve the next trip.” – AnnaMay D.
  • “Traveling with Holiday Vacations is the best way to see the world! They take care of all the planning so you don’t have to worry about a thing. If any hurdles arise during the trip, they go above and beyond to handle it and create a seamless experience. Just kick back and enjoy your vacation; all the details are taken care of for you!” – Combination of tips from Katie W., Mike P., Kathy C., Lois S., Debra A., Mary P., Mary C., Vicky L., Peggy S., Kari M., Marcia D., Trish B., Melinda M., Patricia Z., Sharon J., Rita H., and Heidi G.

Packing Tips

  • “When you’re packing for your trip, make a list of everything you want to take with you and check them off as you pack. You can add more items or take things off as you go!” – Combination of tips from Michael R. and Ann G.
  • “Check the weather forecast for your destination and pack clothing that’s easy to layer in case the weather changes on your tour – a raincoat with a hood and sunscreen are must-haves! Pack half of what you think you need; if the weather does change, you can always buy additional clothes as a souvenir.” – Combination of tips from Barbara J., Carol T., Brenda B., Mark C., and Ray K.
  • “You can wear the same clothes multiple times and can always do laundry on your trip, so focus on leaving more room for items you purchase during your trip. Try to pack everything in a carry-on bag or backpack, but if you can’t fit everything in a backpack, check your bag instead of stuffing it in an overhead.” – Combination of tips from Roberta W., Christine M., Danielle R., Linda M., Julie N., Amy W., Birgit H., Rhonda C., Kathy S., Wendy H., Rafael J., Ann G., Constance M., and Bonnie B.
  • “Roll your clothing to save space and avoid wrinkles, but consider bringing a small bottle of wrinkle spray just in case. Use packing cubes that are mesh or clear to see what’s inside and stay organized, or use clear Ziplock bags for small items in case TSA checks your bag. Vacuum-less compression bags are another great way to maximize space in your suitcase! ” – Combination of tips from Bill & Delores P., Amy W., Birgit R., Sharon W., Irene M., Marcia V., Carol R., Elizabeth M., AnnaMay D., Theresa A., Sharon M., Jackie B., Deb K., Judy S., Cheryl O., Lori H., and Derek C.
  • “Bring a laundry bag and detergent pods with you in a Ziplock bag in case you need to do laundry.” – Eileen S.
  • “Never travel with new shoes; comfortable, supportive shoes are a must! Even better, bring two pairs so you can switch back and forth if needed.” – Combination of tips from Pat L., Barb S., Judy S., Noralie J., and Kim S.
  • “Pack bottled distilled water if you use a CPAP. It’s often hard to find when traveling.” – Kris S.
  • “If you’re traveling with a partner or a significant other, pack half of your clothes in each other’s bag. This way, if one person’s luggage gets lost or delayed, you will be prepared and still have the essentials!” – Combination of tips from Bev H., Pat T., Bob K., Eunice A., Tim M., and Elizabeth M.
  • “Carry at least one change of basic clothing and essentials, like toothbrushes and chargers, with you in your carry-on. This way if your luggage is lost or delayed, you will still be set with the necessities.” – Combination of tips from Carolyn F., Maureen V., and Jackie B.
  • “Always carry your medication on you, not in your checked luggage. Bring cold medicine and cough drops just in case – you never know when you’ll need it!” – Combination of tips from Vicki P. and Peggy D.
  • “Pack a jacket that’s light enough for indoors but keeps the chill out when outdoors. I recommend the LL Bean Mountain Classic Anorak jacket, which has a front zipper pouch. You can stash your travel documents, cash, etc. inside to easily pull out as needed when going through TSA or purchasing something.” – Mary J.
  • “When traveling outside of the USA, consider bringing a washcloth or body puff with you for the shower, as most hotels do not have these. They often only have a duvet – no top sheet – on the bed so consider bringing one if you are a warm sleeper. Or take the center of the duvet out and use the cover as a sheet.” – Jess W.
  • “Purchase a multi-use voltage converter before traveling off the continent, since different countries use different power receptacles.” – Bob K.
  • “Take a variety of your favorite snacks and bring Imodium for those times when some foods don’t agree with you.” – Combination of tips from Larry & Terri K. and Mary S.
  • “Since many people have similar suitcases, it helps to put a colorful strap or piece of fabric around yours to make it easier to identify. Plus, it can keep the suitcase closed if the zipper fails! You can also put an AirTag in your suitcase to keep track of it, which is especially helpful if it gets lost.” – Combination of tips from Dan & Darlene H., Jackie B., Karen K., and Vanessa S.

Tips for During Tour

  • “Be curious and embrace the culture of the area you’re traveling to. Try new foods, take extra side trips in your free time, and if you’re traveling abroad, take the time to learn a few basic phrases in the regional language; the locals will appreciate it! Put the yelp app on your phone so that it is easy to find the best restaurants in the area.” – Combination of tips from Stacy P., Diane B., Lori D., Anne A., and Beverly W.
  • “For solo travelers, always let your tour leader and a couple new friends on the tour know where you are headed should you trek alone during free time.” – Mildred A.
  • “Place a hand towel on the bottom of your bathtub or shower. Hotel bathroom tubs and showers are notoriously slippery, so stand on the towel to bathe. And please, always leave a cash gratuity for the house cleaning staff who work so hard behind the scenes.” – Katie H.
  • “When doing laundry on tour, roll the washed clothes in a heavy towel so they dry faster. Keep your laundry bag off the floor using one of the hangers in the closet; you can also use the ironing board to keep your stuff on if there’s not enough counter space. Using a vacuum-pump storage bag for dirty laundry is very helpful when switching hotels often; it compresses the volume of the dirty clothes to free up suitcase space and isolates the dirty laundry from the clean clothes.” – Combination of tips from Deb K., Doris S., Jean C., and Linda B.
  • “Carry a Ziplock bag for your wet umbrella so everything else in backpack doesn’t get wet. Also, pick up newspaper from hotel lobby and stuff wet shoes with it. Replace wet newspaper a few times and shoes should be dry by morning.” – Elaine G.
  • “At the end of each day, jot down two ‘favorites’ of the day. When you return home you have a fun way to reminisce at your fingertips.” – Bonnie P.
  • “Get to know your fellow travelers! By the end of the trip, you’ll all be like a big family. Enjoy making new friendships and ask them about other trips they’ve taken to get recommendations for your next one.” – Combination of tips from Ginger B., Bertha W., Cheryl O., Bonnie B., Elise H., Linda M., and Peg M.
  • “Be open-minded, accommodating, flexible, and adventurous! Unexpected things happen, so just go with the flow and continue to enjoy your tour.” – Combination of tips from Ruby S., Evelyn S., Eileen S., Joyce A., Jess W., Kelly M., Joy C., and Teri N.
  • “Be on time and be courteous of everyone around you. Listen to the Tour Director and guides and stick to the schedule to ensure everything goes smoothly!” – Combination of tips from Susan C., Julie H., Gail F., George B., Kim S., Jess W., Carolyn F., and Diane B.
  • “Take lots of pictures so you can enjoy these travel memories for years to come, but also be sure not to miss the amazing sights beyond the camera or phone.” Combination of tips from Elaine M. and Rafael J.

We hope these travel tips help relieve any worries you may have about preparing for your tour! Rest assured that while we can’t pack your bags, we are here to take care of everything else. In fact, we even put together a comprehensive packing list!

If you would like any additional insight for your upcoming vacation with us, please check out our Travel Planning Hub or give us a call at 1-888-867-2190.

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