Travel

Plane

While it is fairly easy to use tags in this blog to reach the various topics, I felt travel was an important enough topic to warrant its own page. I have been fortunate enough to travel to many beautiful places within the past few years with my wonderful girlfriend and thought it would be nice to share what I learned in case any random citizen of the internet wanders across my page.

The below links will be continually activated as I write blog posts and add photos. If it is not hyperlinked yet, it is because I have not written a blog post about the destination yet.

Destinations

Florida
South Beach, Miami & the Keys
– Photos from South Beach Miami, Key West and Isla Morada Florida

Greece
Athens
Santorini
– Milos
– Photos from Santorini, Milos and Athens Greece

Massachusetts
– Boston
– Provincetown, Cape Cod
– Photos from Cape Cod and Boston Massachusetts

Mexico
Playa del Carmen
Photos from Playa del Carmen Mexico

Nevada
– Las Vegas
– Photos from Las Vegas

New York
– Manhattan
– Photos from New York, New York

Pennsylvania
– Philadelphia
– Photos from Philadelphia Pennsylvania

Washington DC & Northern Virginia
Maryland
Photos from Washington DC

Travel Advice

Very broadly, the general advice I would give to anyone who wants to travel.

  1. Don’t have children
    1. This speaks for itself. Unless you earn a ton of cash, it is difficult to afford to care for a child and travel, or to take the tyke with you and pay for its airfare, hotel, food etc. Travel is just not as fun when you are babysitting the entire time.
  2. Travel in low to mid season for each destination
    1. This saves you a lot of money and its not as overwhelming being in a strange new destination when it is not insanely crowded and all the staff of hotels and restaurants are stressed out from the flow.
  3. Use Tripadvisor and Yelp to research destinations before going
    1. Try and take all the reviews with a grain of salt. Many times reviews can be padded. Try and use your instinct when judging the validity of the reviews.
    2. For instance, a location may have many negative and positive reviews. Are the positive reviews all by people with a  history of only maybe 1 or two previous reviews? And then the negative reviews are by people with dozens if not hundreds of reviews? Trust the negative reviews in a case like that.
    3. Tripadvisor not only has great reviews, but an awesome forum for each destination. Visit the forum, search for questions you may have to see if they have been addressed already before posting. Many ofthe forums are staffed by full-time writers from each area who are there constantly giving good advice to encourage tourism there.
  4. Pack as lightly as possible
    1. This will reduce stress. Pack smart. Stuff socks in shoes, fold or roll clothes tightly. Be sure to put liquids in sealed plastic containers to contain spills. E-Bags is a great site that features useful packing cubes and toiletry kits.
  5. Try and purchase luggage that stands out a little bit
    1. You don’t want someone accidentally walking off with your luggage. In addition, it is less likely to get stolen if it is obvious from a mile away that this luggage is unique and will not blend as easily. Or if it gets lost, it will be easier for staff at airports to locate it when it is a unique color or has unique stickers or other identifying markers. In other words, buy anything but black luggage.
  6. Always have travel insurance
    1. You never know, and many times the travel insurance packages have much cheaper car rental insurance than if you purchase it at the car rental store.
  7. Pick gay travel destinations
    1. If you are anything like us, you probably don’t want your vacation ruined by screaming children and rude obnoxious people. We find that gay destinations are very very pleasant, have less children, have better kept hotels, better food, better shopping and more. Compare Myrtle beach with Provincetown for example.
  8. Don’t over-plan
    1. I normally print out a list of important numbers, such as confirmation numbers for hotels, addresses of hotels, airplane departure times etc. I also have a list of good ideas for breakfast, lunch dinner etc. However, you don’t need to be this detailed and it is oftentimes more fun to simply wing it when you get there and discover good place to eat and shop.
  9. Smugmug is a great way to share your photos
    1. Sites like myspace, facebook, photobucket and picasa don’t really give you the amazing options and speed smugmug does. I absolutely love the service and feel it is worth the annual cost. If you aren’t all that picky about your photography Picassa is probably good enough for your needs.
  10. Call your bank before you leave
    1. Call your bank ahead of time and inform then when and where you will be. In addition, ask if they are affiliated with any branches where you are traveling. If they are, using the ATMs of that particular branch should save you on fees.

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