Travel Tips

     Here are some travel-related resources to help with your vacation.

    Travel Documents   Your tour documents, travel literature, will be sent to you prior to departure. Please read this information carefully, before departure - as it contains a wealth of advice and essential information to make your vacation as enjoyable as possible.

    Plan Your Budget   You are advised to do this well in advance and be sure to allocate funds for special events whilst on tour, such as theatres, celebration meals, shopping and side trips, and most importantly, Additional Optional Tours.

    Cash & Travellers Checks   Prior to leaving on your trip we advise you to exchange your money into the local currency of the country you are visiting. There is also opportunity to convert travellers checks or cash into local currency during your vacation and many hotels can do this. US dollar travellers checks are readily accepted. Remember, it is difficult to exchange local currencies back into US Dollars when you return home, so we suggest you exchange ALL currency at the airport prior to leaving - or indulge yourself and spend it!

    Currency Exchange Website: http://www.x-rates.com/calculator.html

    US Passports Information   To apply for a passport for the first time, you must present, in person, a completed application at a State Department Passport Agency (located in major cities) or US Post Offices authorised to accept passport applications.

    Bring proof of US Citizenship (such as a certified copy of your birth  certificate), an ID that includes your signature and photo, and two identical 2" x 2" photos.

    Check the expiration date of your passport well in advance of  your trip. The mail-in procedure can take up to four weeks during peak spring and summer travel seasons.

    If you have questions about where or how to apply for a passport, call your local Passport Agency or the Washington, DC Passport Agency at 202-647-0518. More information is available at the following websites.                                                                                                                                        US. Department Passport Services:      http://travel.state.gov/passport_services.html

    American Passport Express                     http://www.americanpassport.com

    Passport Express                                           http://www.passportexpress.com

    European Weather   http://www.intellicast.com/LocalWeather/World/Europe/content.shtml

    Trip Cancellation Insurance   Having good insurance coverage is the only way to plan for accidents or the unpredictable. We can include an inexpensive insurance package that can be purchased at the time of deposit. Most policies have a blanket coverage that will protect your investment should you need to cancel the trip completely, as well as medical emergency coverage while you're travelling. Travel  Insurance coverage varies by the provider, so be sure to read all of the details of your policy before you go.

    Packing & Preparation   Pack as light as possible and pack everything of value in your carryon luggage. If your luggage is lost, even temporarily, you could experience problems that are easily prevented. Make a point to fill any prescriptions before you leave the US and carry an extra pair of contact lenses or glasses, just in case. Comfortable walking shoes and loose fitting clothes are a must. Remember that many airlines are enforcing the "one piece of carryon luggage" rule, particularly when the flight is  full, so pack your bags accordingly.

    Keep a duplicate copy of your passport and travellers checks in a safe place. Securing replacements of these documents when you travel abroad is much easier when you can provide copies of originals. Credit cards are widely accepted but, you may still find it necessary to carry cash when you venture into small towns and rural areas.

    Suspend newspaper deliveries and have the post office hold your mail. Leave a few lights on in the evening. If the lights in your home are equipped with a timing system, set the timer to turn the lights on at dusk and off at dawn, or according to your usual routine. Timing systems are inexpensive and available at most home improvement stores.

    Don't change the message on your telephone answering machine when you are going on vacation. Other callers can leave messages that can be returned when you get back from your vacation.

    Travel Health   A large, colourful, friendly web site with information to help you stay healthy while you travel overseas. For general info click on:    http://travelhealth.com

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