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Whether you're a frequent flyer or an armchair traveler, there are certain details it's nice to review before making plans for that next big trip. Every week, we'll squeeze our mindgrapes and share tips to make sure you're the best informed flyer in seat 1A...or 38K.
This Week: The 5 Things Everyone Should Do Before Checking Luggage
Chile Travel / Patagonia Travel / PUQ / LAN / Adventure Travel / Only in South America / South America Travel / Travel Tips / Weather / → All Tags
Go south, way south, to Chilean Patagonia. As home to snow-capped mountains, dramatic fjords, extreme weather, exotic flora and fauna, and the world's second largest ice field, it's no wonder this region ranks high on traveler's bucketlists. We've just crossed it off our own, and all week we'll be sharing our top tips to making this dream destination a reality vacation.
Thinking of taking the leap and the long flights necessary to visit Patagonia? Excellent idea, but you should know that it is a destination with weather mood swings.
Patagoniahere we highlight Punta Arenas and the Torres del Paine National Park areasits way down in the Southern Hemisphere, so the summer and winter are the complete opposite of what New York and Europe experience, for example. This is a huge plus, because when NY or London are being battered with below-freezing temps and blustery winds, you can escape down to Patagonia for sunny horseback rides, breezy hikes, and photographing the dramatic landscape under starkly white lenticular clouds.
To make sure you book that dream trip and have the best possible time, we've got some recommendations for when.
Delays / Storm Travel / Boreas / Thanksgiving Travel / Holiday Travel / Travel Tips / Airports / Layovers / → All Tags
You're stuck. You're cranky. You're uncomfortable. If you're lucky, your home until you can fly out will be a hotel or the living room of a friend, but many will find themselves sleeping at the airport and that's just no fun. Here, however, are Five items you can buy at the airport to survive long flight delays:
· Beach Towel: Not only does it soften a sleep on the floor or hard chairs, but it's also effective as a dirt barrier between you and whatever is on that floor/soaked into the waiting area chairs. Spread it out on a blanket to curl up on, roll it up to use as a pillow or cover yourself with it like a blanket for privacy or warmth. There are many uses for something so simple, and luckily it should be cheap enough to throw out once your flight does board and depart.
· A carabiner clip: If you're planning on getting some good sleep, it's always an excellent idea to secure your belongings just in case. Buying a carabiner clip keychain or something similar may keep your purse strap/laptop bag handle/shoes/airport purchases bag next to you all night, instead of having it easily picked up and wandered off with while you're snoozing.
Weather / Storm Travel / Boreas / Thanksgiving Travel / Holiday Travel / Travel Tips / Airports / Layovers / Delays / → All Tags
With perfect timing, Mother Nature is rearing her head for Thanksgiving by dropping a Nor'easter storm named "Boreas" on the east coast. Airlines are already issuing change fee waivers for the major airports of the Northeast, and the rain is supposed to be heavy enough to cause massive delays and cancellations through Thursday and possibly even Friday.
While there's all of this focus on NYC, Boston, Washington DC and Philadelphia, let's not forget the scores of tired and cranky folks about to be delayed at other airports around the country, trying to make it to and not away from the East Coast just to eat some turkey with family.
It’s something we’ve all experienced—the credit card digits have been entered, but just moments later you realize that airfare really wasn’t what you needed. It’s been roughly a year since Uncle Sam implemented some new rules, so the ability to cancel your flights within 24 hours of booking is pretty much the law of the land. Now when you realize that you really don’t want to visit your family for the holidays you can cancel your purchase—hassle free. We’ve rounded up some of the policies below to ensure that you can book first and figure it out later.
· American Airlines
Things are a little different if you’re booking with American Airlines rather than some other carriers, but it’s not necessarily a bad thing. They’re cool with your holding your ticket online before booking, and they give you at least 24 hours to make up your mind. Your ticket, reservation, or whatever you want to call it is held until midnight on the following day. If your plans are eligible you’ll see a little logo—it’s got a clock on it—that says Free 24 Hour Hold. Use that and you can book first and think later, but just remember that it’ll disappear if you don’t come back and finish things up.
Delta calls this perk all part of their Customer Commitment, and they’re quick to point out that you can score a refund for most eTickets purchased directly through Delta. Travel needs to be starting off in spots across the United States, US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and Canada, and there’s no need to call. It can all be done online—you have a day to cancel things for any reason and to receive a full refund—with no cancellation fee or other penalty.
Travel Tips / Lists / Airlines / Travel News / → All Tags
1. THOU SHALT HONOR THY FLIGHT ATTENDANT AND FLIGHT CREW
This is more than a "commandment" we made up; it's the law. No talking back to flight crew, and pay attention to announcements and directions, whether it's from a fresh face flight attendant or a wizened captain.
2. THOU SHALT NOT COVET THY NEIGHBOR'S NECK PILLOW
RUDE. There is no punishment greater in hell than for those who steal the blanket, pillow, or other comfort item belonging to another passenger. For the many hours of an international flight, that napkin of blanket or puff of a pillow is all we may have between a fitful sleep and jet lag for days, or a backache and relaxation. If you desire another blanket or pillow, ask a flight attendant; don't be so low as to steal from your fellow traveler.
A glance at Jaunted's section on travel hacks shows that we don't do these write-ups very often (unless you count posts about how to evade parts of TSA's laughingly awful security as "travel hacks," which we don't, and also stop trying to get us in trouble). Sometimes though, there's a trick that's sufficiently clever, evil, and obscure - we prefer it be all three - that we feel the need to pass it on. Because we're humanitarians.
Today's tip comes courtesy of travel uber-blog View from the Wing. It has to do with how travelers can override the safeguards that hotels build into their rooms to contain costs and conserve energy. Like we said, we're humanitarians.
Packing List / Chile Travel / Chiloe Travel / Island Travel / South America Travel / Only in South America / LAN / Travel Tips / Literary Travel / → All Tags
The famous stilt neighborhoods of Chiloe
One of the most beautiful things about Chile is the way the climate can vacillate from one extreme to a different extreme with just a change of region. While the Atacama Desert is predictably arid and Patagonia often buffeted by whipping winds, the island of Chiloé is known for gray skies and rainfall that wouldn’t be out of place in London. (After all, half the island is a rainforest.)
Since rain is a common occurrence in Chiloéand it often shows up at unexpected times, even when it’s been sunny all morningbe sure to keep a lightweight raincoat and hat around. If you’re planning to spend a lot of time outdoors, rain boots are also a good bet.
Travel Tips / Africa Travel / Kenya Travel / Nairobi Travel / Great Migration / Animals / Susan Portnoy / Travel Photography / AirKenya / Safari Travel / What NOT To Do / → All Tags
Safaris are, by their nature, extremely photogenic. All those lush landscapes, the exotic wildlife, and skies that utterly captivate are begging to be captured on camera. Even better, photographic safaris go one step further by offering travelers experiences and locations specifically with photography in mind, and in many cases with professional instruction.
If you love photography, an African safari can be a life-changing experience, but to get the most out of your trip, here's Jaunted's guide for What Not To Do on an African Safari: The Top 5 Tourist Mistakes:
Portugal Travel / Lisbon Travel / Neighborhoods to Know and Go / Travel Tips / Shopping Travel / → All Tags
While no single post could ever sum up all the tiny gems and small 'hoods you find in a big city, we've broken down the main neighborhoods below to give you an idea of what to expect and do in each. Because Lisbon is a condensed city, it is very easy to get around via public transportation (trolley cars and the subway) or, if you can handle the hills, by foot.
If we can make any aspect of travel just one bit easier, then we consider our job done. Thus, we're happy to pass along some tips to ease the stress of going from point A to point B.
This Jaunted contributor recently popped over to Hong Kong for the very first time, and now shares his 9 tips for a first-time visit to HK:
Last week, we wondered why Americans continue to ignore Portugal despite its proximity to the East Coast and the fact that we constantly fly over it to reach other destinations. The question is rhetorical, and all we can do at this point is our best to show you what you're missing.
Here's a glimpse of what to expect on your inaugural trip to Lisbon, Portugal's largest city and capital, as well as a few cultural and food tips that will have you living like a local in no time.