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Friday, August 3, 2012

Super Useful Travel Links 8.3.12

Can you believe it’s August already? This Summer (and year) are just flying by and it won’t be long and we will be ringing in 2013! Well, let’s not think about that right now. I’ve found a mish-mash of travel posts this week that are informative and at least one that is fun, but totally useless.

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Got a long layover, but not long enough to explore the whole city? The Time Traveler app from Yahoo! helps you create a custom itinerary on the spot that will show you what to do to make the most of the time you have in the city. The app is free in the iTunes app store and gives you maps, directions, allows you to save trips and itineraries and also share with friends and family. Fun, right?

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Sometimes you wish you could just spin the globe and point – like you did when you were a kid – to choose your vacation destination. Too bad globes are so rare these days and when you were a kid you didn’t have to worry about money. Well, Smarter Travel can help you take the guesswork out of going somewhere awesome and the grown up in you can plan a budget trip to get there. Check out the World’s Coolest Secret Tourist Attractions, which aren’t really secret, so much as overlooked. But don’t you want to go somewhere a lot of people don’t know about? Of course you do! Some of the amazing places listed are Newgrange, Ireland and Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania. Now, that’s just fun to say.

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Want to learn how NOT to pack a suitcase? Obviously, it isn’t hard, but Jenna Mourey has me on floor clutching my sides with her video “How Girls Pack a Suitcase”. It doesn’t hurt that she’s super-hot and her dogs are adorable either. Tip: May contain cursing, so probably don’t turn the volume up full blast if you are at work or have small children in the room.

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I’m all about videos today. Instead of packing everything you own for a weekend trip, how about learning how to look chic on the plane, so you are both stylish and comfortable. Gadling shows you their must-have pieces for looking amazing and ready for everything. Don’t fret about the prices, because these items can be found from different brands for a fraction of the cost. I know, because I own most of them and didn’t pay $1,200 for a carry-on bag (or even all my items put together), though I’m thinking twice about those Yosi flatsI see an email from Piperlime featuring them in fun patterns.
Photo from Piperlime
Speaking of Piperlime, they have this great fall travel wardrobe that consists of 8 pieces that can be mixed and matched to make a ton of different looks Add a skirt or a dress and you are good to go for anything on a trip when it starts to get cool again. I also recommend taking this as inspiration and purchasing more affordable pieces elsewhere that won't break the bank. Old Navy has great items that are similar and are more budget-friendly.

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If you were thinking about going across the pond to get in on the Olympic celebrations in London, but thought it would be too expensive, you might be in luck. With 2 weeks left, you still have time to plan a quick trip if you can afford the airfare. With the insistence of the city claiming prices would skyrocket and crowds would be thick, it seems to have the opposite effect. Tourism in London is down. Like, really down. Travelers were afraid of the high accommodation rates and congestion, so they put off their trips. Now merchants and hotels are struggling to stay afloat this month. With only 80% fill rates in rooms, good deals can be found if you look around or even call and speak to the desk agent or the manager.

That’s it for me this week. Do you have any must-have travel pieces you’d like to share?

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