Monthly Archives: January 2017

Travel Tips for the Deaf and Mute

A well-planned trip can go awry at any time due to miscommunication. While travel issues can easily arise even when a traveler believes that he or she has taken care of every aspect of the trip, these issues may be a bigger challenge to those who have inherent communication problems due to speech and/or hearing impairment. However, do not let the daunting travel stories of deaf and mute people discourage you.

You can plan a dream holiday alone or with your near and dear ones simply by planning a few months in advance and keeping a few important pointers in mind. Most of the travel tips for deaf and mute provided in this article are just common sense. To begin with, you need to decide about your travel destination. You can choose to go to any place you wish to visit and enjoy a memorable holiday experience as long as you plan it well.

Selecting the hotel

Once you have picked a location for your travel, you need to make your hotel reservations. This requires doing your homework well. You need to find the top disabled-friendly hotels in the place of your visit and check the list of facilities and services that they offer for the physically challenged. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that was passed in 1990, hotel accessibility should comprise a number of facilities fordeaf and mute guests as well. These include visual alert devices for various in-room amenities such as telephones, alarm clocks, and fire alarms.

Since hearing impairment is an invisible disability, you need to tell people about it to make them aware of the same. You need to do the same while booking a room in a hotel. You should mail the hotel manager, intimating him or her about your disability and requesting him or her to provide you detailed information about the special facilities available such as TDD units and closed-caption televisions in the room.

It is highly recommended that you choose to stay in a room on the ground floor, so that you can get out quickly in case of an emergency. In addition to that, you should ask the manager about the check in and checkout times at the time of making a booking and request the manager to mail you the booking confirmation code on your email id. In addition to that, you can request the manager for any special assistance that you may require during your stay in the hotel.

Flight tickets and traveling arrangements

It is extremely important that you inform the flight reservation person about your hearing impairment at the time of booking your tickets. This way he or she can arrange for a person who knows sign language in case those services are required any time during security check or boarding the flight. Most top airlines offer TDD service that allows deaf and mute passengers to communicate with others via text messages that they type on a keyboard. Keep these tips in mind while planning a vacation.

15 Traveling Tips You Must Know Before Traveling Overseas

Traveling could be exciting or frustrating depending on traveling journey you’ve experienced. However, if you are fully prepared for your traveling, then everything should be more enjoyable than miserable. Here are 15 useful traveling tips you must know before traveling overseas. I advise you to go over all of them before you plan your traveling journey. You’ll be surprised how easy to neglect some of these traveling tips, and how important they are for ensuring a successful and enjoyable journey.

  1. Avoid wearing anything that contains metal when traveling through the security checkpoint. Things such as clothing, jewelry, or other accessories that contain metal should be avoided.

  1. A valid passport is recognized internationally as a travel document. Some countries requires a visa to access. If you need a visa, apply two months ahead of time to avoid paying high-fees for emergency situation.

  1. If you travel with a child who has your custody, make sure you have a passport for that child as well. If the child is not yours, make sure you bring along a signed, notarized document from the parent(s).

  1. Be familiarized yourself with the destination. Find out its culture, food, laws, and mostly avoid known dangers.

  1. Take precautions to avoid being a target of crime. If you become a victim of crime, contact consular officer to solve the problem.

  1. Avoid to travel to the country that your own country has no diplomatic relation with.

  1. Be familiarized yourself with conditions at destination that might affect your health. Make sure you check your overseas medical insurance coverage. It may not cover you overseas. If you plan to stay long, you may consider to buy a short-term policy to cover you there.

  1. Consult your doctor before you bring medications or fill prescriptions. Carry a letter from your physician if necessary. Always put your medications in your carry-on bag for easy access.

  1. For people who wear glasses/contact lens, it is advice to take an extra pair of glasses or take disposable contact lens with you. Always put your glasses or contact lens in your easy-access bag.

  1. Make sure you have a photocopy of your passport, credit cards, or any other import items with you while traveling. Keep one set of these copies at home.

  1. If you travel with your pet, find out ahead of time to see whether you are allowed to take your pet with you. If you are allowed, get some tips of traveling with your pet from your vet.

  1. Disabled travelers have to find out the standards of accessibility in certain countries. When making reservations, inform the travel agent about your disability and may request a wheelchair be brought to the gate upon your arrival.

  1. For people who adopt a child oversea, you need to obtain an immigration visa for that child in the country of adoption.

  1. Don’t carry too much cash with you for your trip, but make sure you have enough money in case of an emergency. Avoid putting all your money in one place.

  1. Find out what items you can or cannot bring back with you upon returning to your home country.

In short, one must plan well for traveling overseas. Knowing the above 15 traveling tips before traveling overseas may have saved you tons of headaches. Your traveling journey may bring you more memorial joys than unpleasing experience.

Local Customs and More on a Travel Tips Blog

Experienced travellers claim that you should travel light on luggage and heavy on knowledge. Genuine globetrotters point out that everywhere you go, the hotels, restaurants, and shops will have everything you need. Moreover, if you keep your suitcase empty on your outbound trip, you have lots of room for all the great one-of-a-kind items you will pick-up on your travels. You cannot and should not, however, keep your mind more than half empty, leaving yourself vulnerable to hijackers, pirates, and international incidents. Reading a good travel tips blog, you can develop an experienced traveler’s wisdom and insight without ever leaving home.

Rules, regulations, and requirements

A travel tips blog will detail the rules, regulations, requirements, and laws governing travel to any destination on earth. Learn whether you need special documents or identification; should you carry your passport and birth certificate wherever you go? Learn whether you need proof of vaccination to enter the country; should you protect yourself against malaria, smallpox, and other contagious diseases relatively uncommon in Europe and North America? What will you do if you are injured during your travels abroad; will your insurance protect you, or should you purchase extra “trip insurance”? Can you drive a car through the country; what are the rules of the road? A travel tips blog breaks-down all the information into its main ideas and details, placing emphasis where it belongs and adding information only the locals would know.

Currency and exchange rates

Although the vendors and merchants will help you with all your transactions, you should know enough about the currency and values that you can tell the difference between a genuine bargain and an over-priced touristy curio. A travel tips blog will advise you to carry a pocket calculator or get an app for that, so that you can go comfortably from dollars to Euros to rupees or pesos. When you have mastered the math, move on to mastering the etiquette of tipping: to whom do you offer a gratuity, and how much is enough? Perhaps most importantly, a travel tips blog will advise you about shopping-what about tariffs, duties, customs fees, and other costs. That little trinket that seemed like the most awesome bargain in the universe may become your most expensive mistake if you do not prepare in advance.

Customs and courtesies

Learn a little bit about common courtesies in the countries on your itinerary. A travel tips blog will advise you about the consequences of asking for a fork in Japan or China, the complications of violating a local’s “personal space” in New York, and the ramifications of belching or becoming belligerent in an Australian pub. What about handshakes, bows, and hugs? Who does what, when and why? People in California and Colorado believe in hug-at-first-sight; other places not so much. Women may discreetly inquire about proper headwear: what does one wear as she visits the Vatican, takes tea with the Queen, or travels anywhere in Iran?

Cruise Travel Tips

Are you planning on going on a cruise? Well if this is your very first time, you may not be very sure what to expect. Having a few tips to help you out can be very helpful to you. So, here are some important cruise travel tips to keep in mind when you go on a cruise.

Tip #1 – Have a Carry On Bag – The first one of cruise travel tips that you’ll need to remember if you’re going on a cruise is to make sure that you have a carry on bag. Once you get on the ship, you’ll want to visit your cabin but you can’t expect your baggage to show up for awhile. So, it’s a good idea to have a carry on that has some clothes and a few essential toiletries on hand.

Tip #2 – Get a Map of the Ship – Cruise ships are huge. You don’t want to get lost and a map can definitely be a huge help to you. Make sure you have the map and take a bit to look it over so that you’ll be able to more easily get around the ship.

Tip #3 – Walk to Where You’re Going – When you are going to dinner or you are going to a show on board, you may want to walk wherever you are going. You’ll find that the elevators are probably going to be full and often many people are trying to wait for an elevator and they may not be in a great mood. So, just go ahead and take a stroll and get a bit of exercise walking to wherever you need to go.

Tip #4 – Keep the Noise Down at Night – If you are out late at night, make sure that you keep the noise down. You don’t want to go around slamming the doors of your cabin, since it can wake many people around you up. So, have some courtesy and shut your doors as quietly as possible to avoid encounters with grumpy cruise mates.

Tip #5 – Avoid Wearing Expensive Jewelry – When you are on a cruise ship, don’t go around wearing your most expensive jewelry so everyone can see it. Of course there will be some formal dinners where you will want to look great, but leave the most expensive jewelry at home. You may become the victim or a thief if you go around flaunting expensive jewelry.

Tip #6 – Tip Generously, is the last one of the cruise travel tips listed here; When you are out there on a cruise, make sure that you tip generously whenever possible. Most of the people on the ship make very little money except for by your tips. So, make sure that you are kind enough and generous to give a great tip.

Finally, make your cruise travel memorable and all that you want it to be by doing a lot of planning before you travel.

Ethiopia Adventure Travel Tips

Travel (especially bus travel) is a real adventure and not for the faint hearted as there is long travel days (even longer if the bus breaks down) on poorly maintained roads. But it is an excellent way to get up close and personal and experience the life and culture of the locals.

Addis Ababa
We arrived at the airport at 3.30am. We had not booked any accommodation due to our early arrival so we stayed at the airport till about 7am. A taxi agreed to take us into the city for USD$10. We went to the Ras Hotel where we had to wait till 9am to see if they had a room.
Travel Tip: We stayed at the Ras Hotel 3 times due to its central location. The price includes breakfast which is awful but lunch and dinner are good.

Bahir Dar
We stayed at the Ghion Hotel on Lake Tana and did a boat cruise to the islands to see the painted churches. The Blue Nile Falls area is pretty but not worth the long bumpy ride to get there. Since damming the river, the waterfalls are certainly nothing like the posters show.
Travel Tip: Check if a guide is included with your Lake Tana boat cruise. There was 9 of us on our boat. No guide accompanied us on the boat except for our private guide Samson. The first island we visited Samson acted as intrepreter otherwise we would have not understood what we were looking at. The second island we visited the church guide spoke English.

Gonder
The abandoned castles are very interesting and it is worth hiring the guides inside the gate.
Travel Tip: We stayed at the Belgez Pension which was cheap, clean and quiet but the rooms were very small and cramped. They do your washing for a very small fee – give to the cleaners in the morning.

Simien Mountains
We did a one day 4WD day trip with another traveller and our guide Samson.
Travel Tip: We would have liked to have stayed overnight even though we are not trekkers, as the scenery is stunning.

Lalibela
We spent 2 nights in Lalibela exploring the amazing rock churches.
Travel Tip: Keep your entrance ticket handy as they will be checked at each church entrance.

Arba Minch
Arba Minch is a overnight bus stop between Addis Ababa and Jinka.
Travel Tip: Spend an extra night on one of the stopovers and do the lake tour.

Jinka
We hired a 4WD locally to tour the main 3 tribes in the area (Mersi, Hamer and Karo tribes). We shared this cost with 3 other travellers who were on the bus and stayed at the same accommodation as us.
Travel Tip: Buy your bus ticket to Addis Ababa early (at least 1 day in advance) so you can obtain a better seat number otherwise you will find yourself stuck at the back of the bus on the 2 day journey. Buy good ear plugs so that you can block out the noise of the loud music videos playing.

Transport
We used a variety of transport that included: public bus, minivan, 4WD and boat.
Travel Tip: If you find that quite a few of you are heading in the same direction, it will be more economical and comfortable to rent a minivan and driver like we did from Bahar Dar to Gondar (7 people).

Tour Guide
We used the services of a private guide. This was the first time we have hired a guide for the entire trip through a new country. The guide proved invaluable in keeping the touts away (worth the money alone), dealing with local tour operators and obtaining hotels.
Travel Tip: Use a private guide’s extensive knowledge and experience to enjoy Ethiopia through the eyes of a local.