Visiting a new city, country or continent can be both exciting and nerve-wracking for even the most seasoned world traveler. So before you pack your bags and book your flight, read over this handpicked selection of travel tips and tricks for advice that will help you to make the most of your next pleasure trip.

To simplify the packing process, try to pack clothing in only one or two colors. For example, you could pack only blue and khaki skirts and pants and only shirts that are shades of blue and khaki. This technique ensures that everything you pack coordinates with everything else, so you will never have a problem finding something to wear on your trip.

Look at your alarm when you get to a hotel. Lots of travelers have had the unpleasant experience of being awoken by an alarm set by someone else. In order to get the most rest, turn the alarm off or set it for the time you actually want to be awake.

Got Uber?

If you want to save money in Athens, use Uber instead of traditional taxis. Taxi cab drivers hate Uber because Uber undercuts their fees by up to 50%. This is one of the big reasons that riders love using Uber.

Uber handles all of these details on a smartphone app that you install on your phone, you authorize payments via credit card. Uber operates at a fraction of the overhead cost of traditional taxi companies, and they pass those savings onto you in the form of reduced fares.

Uber cars are cleaner, newer, and smell much nicer than the beat up old cars taxi drivers commonly use.

Clothespins can be very helpful when travelling. Clothespins are not a typical travel item for many people, but should be reconsidered given their usefulness and versatility.

Before you go through airport security, make sure you put the extra change or your car keys in your carry-on. Keeping the line backed up because you have to take change out of every cargo pocket is a nuisance but easily avoidable. With that said, loosen your shoes laces before you get to the bin area so you slide your shoes off.

Keeping fresh water for you pet is a must when you are traveling. This is particularly important in hot climates. One way of insuring cool, fresh water is to rinse out a two liter drink bottle, fill it, and freeze it before you leave. As it melts it will provide your pet with the liquid they need to survive.

Anyone who’s ever been on a cruise knows how much all the hallways and doors look the same. To make finding your door easier, bring a photo of your family pet or something (nothing personal!) and attach it to your door with a Christmas bow. This will help you easily identify which room is yours.

If you’re going on a cruise with your family, pack along some Walkie-talkies. Cruise ships are basically floating cities and it’s very easy to get separated. Walkie-talkies can help everyone keep in touch, especially if you don’t get cell phone reception or if you’re out of the country and don’t want to pay heavy international charges.

If you’re going to be going on a road trip, make sure you pack a tire repair kit! You never know where you might be when you get a flat tire and it’s better safe than sorry. If you don’t have one and have to call of tow truck you may be looking at expensive charges and a ruined trip.

Even if you are planning an extended stay in a foreign country, there are some items you should leave behind, mostly as a precautionary measure. Valuables such as jewelry, are safer at home than they are overseas. While the desire to bring a reminder of home with you is understandable, don’t take sentimental or one-of-a-kind items that can’t be replaced. Remove unnecessary, yet important items from your wallet, including credit cards that you don’t need and your Social Security card.

If your travel plans involve taking a red-eye flight, eat your meal at the airport and then take a pill to help yourself sleep after your flight leaves for your destination. Make sure that you only take the sleep aid after you are in the air. If you take it before then, you may have difficulty if the plane has to go back to the gate. These two steps can help you make the most of a difficult flight.

Traveling with children is very different than traveling alone or with adults. Young children in general do not have the social skills to always behave as they should. Be patient with children, bring along a lot of healthy snacks and even a few unhealthy ones to help their temperament. Be sure to have lots of easily accessible activities handy as well. Try to avoid travel when your child is extremely sick if at all possible.

Packing for a trip means keeping it light. Fuel costs are driving fees for overweight baggage and causing fliers to readjust their travel budget on the fly. Pack only what is necessary for your trip and leave extraneous items out. Sometimes it might be in your best interest to purchase small ticket items at your destination, as opposed to paying for the weight.

When you are traveling to a certain city or location, have the local specialty at several different restaurants. This is a fun way to get introduced to the local fare, and you can make a game out of deciding which establishment cooked the meal the best. This idea will also encourage you to visit a lot of different places during your stay.

Airport websites may be a great place to get some really cheap tickets. The site will list all of different airlines that offer service there. Watch out for the list of fees that the airlines might charge you. It may end up nickel and diming you with baggage fees and some other fees and end up costing you more than the other airlines.

If you are traveling to another country, make sure to check out their basic laws and regulations. Each country has their own set of laws and rules, and things that may be legal or a small offense in your country may be illegal or a major offense in another.

Get travel insurance to ensure a stress-free vacation. Planning and executing a vacation can be stressful enough, but if something nefarious happens to you abroad, you can be left with a hefty bill. Insurance will cover both medical costs and the cost of replacing your property if it is lost or stolen, which means your vacation won’t be ruined after all!

Using the advice you read here today, you will surely discover something unexpected and exciting on your next trip. No matter if this will be your first vacation or fifteenth, your trip will be positively affected by following this advice.

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