Packing Light for Cruise Travel and Having All You Need

Tips to pack light for a cruise

Yes, packing light for cruise travel and having everything you need is possible. We have done it successfully multiple times. One of the advantages of cruising is unpacking only once while exploring a variety of locations. However, you still have to lug your belongings to the airport, to the cruise terminal, and back home. For […]

25 Tips for Cruising on Princess that Everyone Should Know

The Island Princess cruise ship docked at the port of Puntarenas in Costa Rica

After two weeks onboard the Island Princess we were surprised to still be discovering things that we probably should have known from the beginning. We were not alone. We frequently heard “I wish I knew that before today.” So I asked officers, crew, and other passengers for their best tips for cruising with Princess. These are […]

Unique Ways to Travel: If You Haven’t Yet, You Really Should

Cruising in Iceland is a unique way to travel. Public domain photo by Dieter55

{This post was written for Albom Adventures by Kacey Mya.} The great thing about travel is that it never has to be the same way twice. Sure, it’s easy to take a plane or car somewhere, but even these methods can be spiced up a little bit to give you a more unique experience. In […]

7 Types of Tours and Guidelines for Organizing Each of These

Private Guide

{This is a sponsored post written by Private Guide.} Not every traveler would accept with pleasure an invitation to wander around the city for hours. There’s no sense in persuading or making him change his mind: there are also other tours to do instead of sightseeing ones. Someone is happy to go to the mountains […]

Reflections of an 18-Night Princess Cruise – Is It for You?

The Island Princess cruise ship docked at the port of Puntarenas in Costa Rica

Have you ever wondered what it is really like on a cruise ship? Is it relaxing, invigorating and fun OR boring, crowded and just one giant food fest? We recently disembarked from an 18-night cruise on the Island Princess, a mid-sized ship in the Princess cruise fleet. This is our longest cruise to date and one that […]

Eating Onboard: How to Cruise Without Gaining Weight

A dinner time favorite, I loved this scallop dinner when I sailed with Princess cruises.

I am pleased to say that I gained very little weight after 19 days eating onboard the Island Princess. We sailed from Fort Lauderdale through the Panama Canal and up to Vancouver. If you have never been on a Princess Cruise ship before, I am here to tell you the food is expertly prepared, appetizing, […]

Planning Pacific Northwest Portion and Our USA Adventure

Muir Wood. Photo by Robert Couse-Baker.

We are busy planning a three part epic USA adventure, which starts in less than a month. Part 1 US Highlights:  Phoenix AZ, Chicago IL, West Palm Beach FL. Part 2 Panama Canal Cruise: Adding six countries so it’s actually much more than a USA Adventure. We have ports in Aruba, Columbia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Canada. Part […]

Weekend Travel Inspiration: Explore Locally – New Zealand

Explore Locally: Hunua Falls, Auckland, New Zealand

Lately my focus has been to explore locally, traveling to nearby New Zealand destinations rather than leaving the country.  Then I found this quote: “The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” ~ G.K. Chesterton. […]

Oosterdam: A Photo Tour of This 5-Star Holland America Ship

Pool on the MS Oosterdam

As soon as I stepped on-board the Holland America Oosterdam I realised that all cruise ships are not the same. The Oosterdam’s tasteful decor caught me by surprise. I have cruised eight times in the past on five different lines (all 3 or 4 star ratings).  The Oosterdam is impressive, an understated beauty, a refined elegance that […]

Traveling on a Budget – How We Save on Airfare and Lodging

Traveling on a Budget

Like most families traveling on a budget, we are often asked: Did you win the lottery? Are you printing money in your attic? Do you have a budget? How can you afford to travel so much? What is your secret? Here are the short answers: I don’t play the lottery. I don’t have an attic. […]

Top 10 Hotel Alternatives – Save Money With These Options

Bed and Breakfast in Vermont

Finding hotel alternatives is one way we afford long term family travel.  We haven’t won the lottery yet, so we are always looking for ways to save money. Accommodation used to be a huge chunk of our budget. As we traveled around the world we learned a few tricks and discovered many hotel alternatives. Whether […]

Zeus says Bring a Sense of Humor: Funny Photos Around the World

bring a sense of humor

I hope you remembered to bring a sense of humor as I am wrapping up the A to Z blogging challenge with some giggles for the letter Z; a special travel tip is from Zeus, king of the gods: (Well, technically today’s message has nothing to do with Zeus, other than his name starts with […]

Travelers Aren’t Immune To Danger: Don’t Pet the Monkeys!

immune to danger

You’re not immune to danger when you travel. Sometimes travelers need to hear the obvious. Do you ever look at other travelers and wonder what they are thinking.  Here is a general rule that works for us: if it’s not safe or smart at home, it probably didn’t improve when we went into a third […]

10 Travel Tips to Cruise the Mediterranean

Real snake used in entertainment onboard the NCL Spirit

We recently decided to cruise the Mediterranean on the NCL Spirit. It was a last minute deal, and we loved it. No, we did not win the lottery.  We booked six days prior to leaving at a discount so big it was cheaper than the nightly price for a hotel and included  12 nights, all […]

Why Pay For It When You Can Get It For Free (AtoZ Travel Tips)


Why pay for it when you can get it for free? (This is different from “Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free”). As we traveled, we were amazed to discover how many wonderful free opportunities exist and just how far a friendly smile will go. Our favorite finds: Free City […]

Visitor Visa Dramas and How To Avoid Them (AtoZ Travel Tips)

visitor visa dramas

One of my favorite souvenirs of our trip around the world is my passport, filled up with visitor visas and permission to enter so many countries. The stories are the same. Never a moment of worry or visitor visa dramas that you hear about so often. We got off the plane in each country, queued […]

Useful and Not So Useful Things To Pack For Extended Travel

not so useful things

It’s really amazing how many not so useful things creep in to luggage.   I don’t know where they come from, but one day you think you are traveling light, the next day you are wondering why you have a giant white bear. Seriously, if you really want to roll your eyes at the not […]

Sleep Cheap – Travel Tips to Save Money on Accommodations (AtoZ Travel Tips)

sleep cheap

Sleep cheap, or free.  After nearly a year on the road we learned lots of tricks to save money on accommodations. No, we didn’t win the lottery, although that would be a great trick! We simply do our laundry by hand, milk our own cows and sleep in places that look like this: Just kidding.   […]

Queen’s Diamond Jubilee – Don’t Miss Once In A Lifetime Events

once in a lifetime

As we traveled around the world, we  stumbled upon some amazing once in a lifetime opportunities. Since today’s travel tip is for the letter Q, I will start with one of our big mistakes.  We were in England for the Queen‘s Diamond Jubilee, a celebration of 60 years at the throne. This was clearly a […]

Open Up to New Experiences – Participate In Local Life (AtoZ)

particpate in local life

Open up to new experiences and participate in local life is my favorite travel tip, as it is what transforms us from tourist to travelers. We don’t want to watch, we want to participate. As it is Wordless Wednesday in addition to AtoZ Travel Tips, I offer these examples. Participate In Local Life  All photos […]

Negotiate Everything – Stay Focused on Your Treasure (AtoZ)

negotiate everything

Negotiate everything. We struggled with this when we first started traveling. Many years ago I was traveling with my cousin and hoping to buy an embroidered bag in Mexico for $10 similar to a $25 one I had seen in the US.  We crossed the border, found the bag at a market, and asked “How […]

McDonald’s has Free WiFi (AtoZ Travel Tips)


McDonald’s has free WiFi all around the world! I know, it is a bit of an exaggeration.  McDonald’s isn’t everywhere, but it does feel like it at times.  And, we did encounter a few exceptions, but most of the McDonald’s we entered offered free WiFi. If you have been following my AtoZ Challenge, I know what […]

Leave It At Home – Travel Light (AtoZ Travel Tips)

essential things to bring

Travel light is probably the best travel tip I have. We started light, so we thought.  For two adults a teen and a tween we had two large backpacks and one medium wheeling bag.  It was just under half of our allowed weight. It was too much.  We had planned to ship home our thermals […]

Kiss The Blarney Stone (Travel Tips from AtoZ)


Do you kiss the Blarney Stone, drink the kava or, sip from the fountain of youth? We participate in our travels, ignore the continuous lashing of negative feedback and, were vaccinated for Hepatitis A and B. Why not kiss the blarney stone? – It’s been reported that teens break into the tower and urinate on […]

Just Learn a Few Words In Each Langauage (AtoZ Travel Tips)

just learn a few words

Just learn a few words in each new language as you travel and life gets easier. We met wonderful, interesting and friendly people all over the world.  Knowing just a few words in their language helped break the ice when we fumbled for conversation and generally returned smiles.  (It didn’t seem to help much in […]