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Travel Smarter with Social Media

If you’re using social media of any kind, use it while planning, traveling and back home.

Social media while travel planning

traveling alone ~ stay connectedTell your friends where you’re going and ask for advice of where they love to sleep, eat and play while there. Nothing beats a first-hand experience.

Social media while traveling

Keep your friends apprised of your whereabouts by sharing photos and ask for advice when you’re stuck. Making them jealous in one update and asking for help in the next keeps your community lively.

Social media when you’re back home

Zoë Siskos recently wrote about how to maximize vacation happiness with social media. If you want to keep all those friends who’ve been drooling over your pictures during you’re travels, you’ll take her advice.

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

Apps Can Make Travel Easier

apps CAN make travel easierTry Hotel Tonight to find last minute hotel deals at great prices. Point Inside will pull up airport or shopping mall maps. Use this to familiarize yourself and plan your route, which will save time. Disney World Wait Times will tell you how long the wait time is for rides based on input by riders. Be sure to download the apps you want before leaving home and be sure to contact your cellular provider and discuss the roaming options available to you. If you use data without a roaming plan, you will be in for one very large phone bill.

Tip courtesy the founders of TweenHood ~ @katsima and @AppHipMom

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Check-In Online for Flights Before Heading to the Airport

check-in online for less hassleOnline check-in means you can choose your seats on the plane ahead of the crowd and spend less time standing in line once you get to the airport. While this is a good strategy for any trip, it’s particularly smart to do when travelling with children. Travel by plane involves a lot of waiting around as it is – anything you can do to reduce the amount of time waiting in line is sure to result in happier kids (and parents!)

Tip courtesy the founders of TweenHood ~ @katsima and @AppHipMom

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

Hotel Room Horrors

You did your homework researching the best place to steal away your honey for a week. You found a great package and checked out your favorite review sites, drinking in as much info as possible before paying the bill. Trouble is, you arrived to a hotel that looks like it hasn’t been painted since Reagan was in office and that beautiful balcony overlooking the ocean is also overlooking a roof littered with rusty air conditioners.

What’s a girl to do?

  • room with a viewBefore you book read the fine print and be sure you’re getting the room you’re paying for – deluxe, superior and luxury can mean very different things.
  • Ask your travel agent to list the room categories from least to most expensive – ask when your room category was last renovated.
  • Even if you’re working with a travel agent, don’t be afraid to call the resort directly to ask your questions.
  • On the hotel’s website, you’ll see the cosmetically beautified version. Search Pinterest and Instagram and TripAdvisor.com for citizen reporting.
  • Search Google Images to see what pictures people have uploaded to their blogs and social media.

And remember, hotel upgrades aren’t always a possibility. If you truly want a more expensive room, book one.

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

Plan an Afternoon Break at Disney World

tips to survive the amusement parkIf you’re spending more than one day at the Walt Disney World parks, try to avoid a marathon session from morning to night. Arrive at the parks for opening, but take a break in the early afternoon to help prevent exhaustion or tempers flaring later in the day. Go for a leisurely lunch, a swim or even a nap. You’ll avoid the biggest crowds in the parks, escape the heat during the hottest part of the day and give everyone a chance to de-stress and recharge. Head back to the rides later in the day with cooler temperatures, shorter lines and a refreshed family.

Tip courtesy the founders of TweenHood

@Katisma and @AppHipMom

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

 

Overcoming Jet Lag

tips to overcome jetlagIf you’ve crossed more than one time zone during a flight, you know how it can mess up your mind and body. For me, jet lag strikes worse when I’m traveling east and regardless which direction I’m heading, the trip home is always more taxing. Try these tips to minimize feeling like a troll when you’re traveling.

  • Rest up before you leave home. Start adjusting your bedtime by a half hour each day the week leading up to departure. Dr. Breus says our bodies need one full day of adjusting for each time zone we cross.
  • Stay hydrated and rest during the flight. GoGirlfriend contributor, Ashley Welton, has a great list of carry-ons to keep you healthy.
  • Adhere to the local time zone. It might be tempting to crash when you arrive but stay up until it’s time to go to bed so you’re not up at 3 am twiddling your thumbs.
  • Take a shower or bath before bed. Raising your temperature in the water and then slipping into cool sheets relaxes your muscles. This trick always works for me.
  • Forget prescription cures. Drugs like Ambien can give you a sleep hangover and interfere with your ability to enjoy your destination.

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

Pack Like a Travel Writer

When I want to, I can economize a week of travel into one cute little carry-on bag.

how to pack adviceStart by putting outfits together, laying them on the bed if you need a visual. Ensure that each item can do double duty with something else in the pile. All skirts and pants must go with all the tops – shoes too. Dresses are the only slackers. Pick accessories around your staples. Bright scarves and unique jewelry can transform an outfit.

Then look at the best case scenario. What can you live without? If it might be cold, pick one wrap or coat that will serve you in multiple situations. Do you need a different outfit for your return trip or will the same one do? Can you wash undergarments in the sink? When in doubt, leave it out. When you're ready to put everything in your bag, roll the clothes - a tip an uncle in the military taught me. Roll your clothes as tight as possible and stuff undergarments and jewelry into shoes. Every last inch of real estate should be filled.

Take enough toiletries to get you started but remember they can also be bought at airports, drugstores and malls. Like you needed an excuse to go shopping…

Have a travel tip to share with your GoGirlfriends? Send us your tips, tricks and strategies and we'll publish them here. Email us or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook. Let's continue the conversation!

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