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Question How do you plan eating when you go on vacation?  Are there apps or special things you to do save money or eat healthier?  Share what works for you!     Answers  Whenever I travel I make sure i download the "YELP" app on my smartphone. It uses your phones location to recommend eating places close by. You can enter a particular favorite cuisine for a more refined search. People leave pictures and recommendations to help you choose. If you are ever in Santa Barbara, California, and craving Mexican food, I highly recommend "Los Agaves" restaurant. All the food is great but the house burrito is the bomb. I found this place using YELP.      If we are driving, we picnic. That is, we purchase some things to make sandwiches, have some canned goods and beverages, and stop at rest areas for lunch. We carry utensils and paper plates, etc.     We always stay in places with a kitchen and cook ourselves. On a multi-week trip, we might eat out a couple of times, but that is it. We mostly stay someplace around national parks in U.S. and Canada, and restaurants are overpriced, mediocre, and unhealthy, imho.         We choose hotels with a breakfast bar (not to eat their junk food packaged as breakfast, but so we don't have to pack a toaster, et cetera) and a room with a kitchen.    We plan our meals to support our activities. At this stage of life that means we eat an athlete's diet: whole wheat toast, boiled eggs, bananas, avocado, raw veggies and fruit, olives, sardines plus a pickled veggies, rich pasta salad and/or a simple green salad. I also make a nut-coconut flake-dried fruit trail mix, and we take a few of those savory Kind bars for race nutrition. Once our sporting events have concluded — and not before — we will eat out with the gang. We so often feel bad after we've eaten out that we simply don't risk that before a race. And then we are extra careful about what we eat. I'll pack peanut butter for a quick rest stop sammie on the way home, but I don't know the last time we stopped at a greasy spoon.    If we are traveling somewhere unrelated to recumbent racing — going from memory here :) — we'll seek out an organic or health food restaurant. But we research them first and tend to grill the waitstaff about preparation methods ... yeah we're those people ... in order to sample a local cuisine.      When we are looking for a place to eat and we want a simple lunch or dinner we ask a local, construction worker, store clerk, etc., where they go for lunch or dinner, or where is their favorite place to take company that comes to town. We travel by motorcycle and camp most of the time, so we eat a late breakfast/lunch with first gas up (we call it blunch), then cook dinner at the campground. Simple fare, but good.       You never know if local restaurants are safe, so stick to well known restaurants like McDonalds, Wendy's, Burger King and such where you know they operate with stringent food safety standards. You do not want to contract food poisoning while traveling and wind up in the hospital! 🏨     I learnt quickly that you need to plan your meals ahead of time. If your flight arrives at 9 PM, by the time you get to the hotel and ready to eat your only choice might be fast food, and that is not going to work out well. I try to schedule flights that leave me time to eat before boarding, or when I get there. Check ahead and see what's around your arrival destination that would offer a suitable meal at the time you will be there.     My wife and I always try to book rooms or a timeshare with at least a partial kitchen. We hit the local grocery store and buy healthy snacks, items for at least a couple picnic lunches, breakfast foods, and drinks. We always come out way ahead dollar wise and save valuable family time out of busy restaurants. As far as eating healthy food, that’s up to an individual's choices when in the grocery aisles. This works well for us and I’m sure it can for you also depending on what your priorities are while vacationing. The main thing is to relax and enjoy!     When we travel, in our camper, we always eat our usual healthy breakfast at camp. Then we will usually have a late lunch out, as we are exploring. We try to choose healthy options. Then at night, back at the camper, we will have soup or a salad for a light dinner. on a recent trip for 3 weeks, neither one of us gained a pound. We actually lost a few because we did a lot of walking.    When we fly and stay in a hotel, same thing. We stock up on fresh fruit, yougurt (if we have a fridge), nuts, etc. Sure we want to try out the local cusine, but we try to eat smart.     We invented the "gelato diet." Since gelato has no cholesterol and is low in fat, when traveling in Europe particularly we make a point to stop for a small container of gelato around 3 pm. That way we're not so hungry at dinner time and eat a smaller meal. We do the same on cruises so we don't overeat. We combine this with lots of walking and have each lost 5 lbs on average every time we travel or cruise.     We've been to Hawaii over a dozen times. For healthy eating, get a condo with a kitchen and an outdoor grill. Ahi tuna, grilled....to die for! (Get a saver card at most groceries. Some groceries are expensive, some aren't.) Check out farmers markets and buy locally produced produce.   To save money, eat where the locals eat; not necessarily healthy, but cheap and fun! Avoid the touristy restaurants, overpriced and you may as well have stayed on the mainland. Aloha.     Pack your own snacks: fruit, nuts, crackers, veggies for the road or the air. Choose the yogurt and fruit at the ‘free’ hotel breakfasts, skipping the high fat/cal pastries, bagels, waffles. Choose hotels with at least a refrig and maybe a microwave. Stock some lunch items like cheese or cold cuts to lunch on in addition to fruit and veggies. Save half your restaurant dinner, refrig it, and reheat in the microwave to eat for lunch the next day. Visit local specialty food shops and pick up parts to a meal, probably less $$ than a restaurant. Visit and purchase wines at the local winery, a definite saving over restaurants. Choose a restaurant with BYO alcohol. For years we ate breakfasts and lunches from local grocery stores and splurged on a great evening meal. And, back when traveling with a hungry teen son, I’d push a peanut butter sandwich prior to dinner: it reduced the $$$ because it took the edge off his appetite and he didn’t order everything on the menu. Remember food handling safety!      I enjoy food markets while I wander new surroundings. I like to try local foods especially if I am somewhere I have never been before. Trying new dishes is part of the over all experience for me. 
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Question What are some of your tips for traveling successfully with your dogs or other animals?      Answers We found it's getting easier to travel with your favorite companion: https://www.aarp.org/travel/vacation-ideas/family/info-2018/how-to-travel-with-pets.html       Keep Your Dog With You Pets should be with you as much as possible during your stay so they do not bark and whine longingly for you or get into mischief while you are away. If you must leave a pet alone, we recommend leaving them in a pet crate or cage designed for them.   If your dog barks loudly, the neighbors may complain or hotel security may be alerted. Once notified, security is obligated to visit the situation. You may be requested to leave if the dog is considered a nuisance.   Locate Off-Leash Dog Parks Near You Most communities require your dog to be kept on a leash.  After being on a leash all day, you want your dog to have a safe spot for your dog to run, sniff and socialize. A Google search can help you locate parks along your road trip path. Or ask your vacation rental host/hotel concierge for recommendations.   Use Your Seat Belt — Especially if Transporting Dogs Of course, you know it’s important to buckle up your passengers and yourself when on the road. But did you know that the California vehicle code requires your dog to be restrained too?   According to California’s Vehicle Code: All animals are to be restrained or contained when being transported on a load-bearing part of the vehicle, unless the space is enclosed.    Obey Laws for Transporting Dogs  There are no federal laws restricting transporting dogs. Other states, like California, do have specific restrictions. Many laws look to protect the animal, while others focus more on protecting you and your passengers.   Before you take off cross-country or just to the vet’s office, make sure you are familiar with the laws that pertain to transporting dogs. Many states specifically require animals to be secured when transported in an open area of a vehicle. In some cases, the laws apply only to dogs.   It is best to review the state(s) you will be traveling in for their specific laws, especially as laws and regulations are frequently updated.     Connecticut, New Hampshire, Oregon, and Rhode Island laws require transporting dogs on some part of the exterior of the vehicle, such as a pickup truck bed to be restrained or contained. While Massachusetts requires   all animals to be restrained or contained unless the space is enclosed. Nevada and Washington's laws focus on safety and cruelty to animals, making it a misdemeanor to transport an animal in a vehicle (1) in a cruel or inhuman [sic] manner in Nevada, or (2) in a manner that will jeopardize the safety of the animal or the public in Washington. New Jersey will fine you at least $250 and as much as $1,000 if law enforcement believes that you are transporting an animal in an improper way. You also could potentially face charges under animal cruelty laws. The law also forbids dogs from hanging out of windows (and also riding in the beds of pickup trucks). Proper restraints needed for your pets when in New Jersey are defined as:  Buckled up with restraints specifically designed for pets, or Safely stowed in a pet crate. Arizona, Connecticut, and Maine can charge you using their distracted-driving laws if you have your pet on your lap. Hawaii is stricter in its laws. They explicitly   forbid you from holding a pet on your lap. At least 14 states and many local jurisdictions have laws against leaving pets unattended in a vehicle. This is especially critical, no matter what state you are in. Four reasons why leaving a dog in a hot car can be deadly: Dogs are especially vulnerable to heat-related illness because they can only cool off by panting and through the pads in their feet. Even on seemingly mild days, an enclosed car can be deadly. Enclosed cars heat up quickly. In a study by San Francisco State University, when it was 80 degrees outside, the temperature inside a car rose to 99 degrees in 10 minutes and 109 degrees in 20 minutes. In a Stanford University study, when it was 72 degrees outside, a car’s internal temperature climbed to 116 degrees within one hour. A dog’s normal body temperature is between 101 to 102.5 degrees; a dog can only withstand a high body temperature for a short time before suffering nerve damage, heart problems, liver damage, brain damage, or even death. Studies show that cracking the windows has little effect on a car’s internal temperature. While none of the laws require your pet to be restrained or secured if, inside an enclosed part of your car, it’s safest to do so for both your sakes. Here are a few tips on how you all can be both safe and law-abiding while transporting dogs in your cars.   Pick the Right Car When transporting dogs it's easiest to do so in an SUV, or minivan if your furry friend is large. For a smaller pet, a hatchback or small wagon would be sufficient. These cars provide space for not only your extra gear but also a pet carrier. Look for ones with tie downs to secure a crate in the back. The important aspect is to be sure you have sufficient space to allow your pet to stand up and stretch its legs. A larger vehicle for larger dogs is definitely helpful, especially if your Great Dane is part of a larger family.    Ask your carmaker if they provide optional plastic liners and pet barriers for the cargo area. If not, you can find them at pet stores or on the internet.   Use Car Crash-Tested Crates The safest and best way for transporting dogs is to use a car crash-tested crate. You can then use this crate as your pet’s own special private room when staying at  your destination.      Cesar Millan, also known as the Pet Whisperer, recommends when selecting a crate that it: Has durable aluminum and plastic reinforced with fiberglass Is designed to allow for good air circulation for ease of breathing by your pet Has good insulation for year-round comfort Was produced with strict quality guidelines. Reputable brands will offer you at least a two-year warranty. Includes the option for crash bags inside the crate for added protection in case of emergency braking. You may also want to consider purchasing a ramp or steps designed to help your furry passenger to climb in and out of the car effortlessly.   For those of you who prefer a safety harness for your dog, only one has thus far passed the car crash test according to the Center for Pet Safety. The Sleepypod Clickit Sport was rated 5-stars.    Schedule Travel Breaks for Both You and Your Pet  You’ll want to be sure to schedule plenty of breaks along the way to stretch both your legs and your pooch’s. It’s also a great opportunity to take photos of the marvelous vistas. Plan your travel time to include a break every 2-3 hours.   Pack Food, Water, and Bowls  Make sure you have enough food and water. This is especially important if transporting dogs for many days or if the day is hot. Five gallons of fresh water will last the average dog about a week. Pack standard dog kibbles that your dog is accustomed to at home, but consider some other food items to stimulate his appetite and provide added energy for when your dog is too tired to eat much or sometimes anything. A meat-based canned dog food or some savory chicken noodle soup full of fat and carbohydrates poured over kibbles will usually do the trick.   We like to use a cloth bowl that zips up into itself or plastic collapsable bowls for easier storage.   Treat Your Dog As You Would Your Own Baby  Not only must you plan for frequent stretch and potty breaks; you must also   NEVER leave your child or your pet in a closed car. Doing so when the weather is warm can literally be a death sentence for your both your baby and your pet.   Bring Along a Doggy First-Aid Kit Another essential for transporting dogs is a doggy first-aid kit and any medication your pet may be on. Before you leave, discuss with your vet the items that may be needed for your dog’s kit. Be certain to have your kit and other essentials quickly accessible.  Our kit includes:   Antibiotics Eyewash/drops De-skunking ingredients   Checklist of Essentials to Pack Are you ready to head off on your trip? Just use our handy checklist when transporting dogs to make sure you have all the essentials listed above, plus a few other recommendations to make sure you and your pet have a fabulous vacation.     Carrier or crate —   We strongly recommend you crate your pet  Sturdy, well-fitting nylon or leather collar or harness, license tag, ID tag(s) and leash Birth certificate and other required documents Food and water dishes  Manual can opener and spoon for canned food for when you are on the road An ample supply of food, plus a few days’ extra Medication, if necessary Healthy treats A blanket or other bedding — Please do not let your pets on the furniture without it. Litter supplies and plastic bags for on the road- Guests must pick up after their pet to avoid added cleaning charges. Favorite toys Chewing preventative —   To keep your dog from teething on the furniture Grooming supplies as needed First-aid kit A recent photograph and a written description, including microchip number, name, breed, gender, height, weight, coloring and distinctive markings   Question How can I travel alone from Tenn to Oregon with a 35-lb. elderly dog? He won't fit under a plane seat nor can he sit in a crate on a train seat for 64 hours. I can't put him in cargo. I don't believe I want to attempt the drive by myself, but have no one to go with. It is intended to be one way but I can't find a way  to accomplish it.   Answer   It sounds like a solution might be to find a someone(s) you could drive cross country with to share the driving and be able to stop regularly for your dog. There are several posts in the Solo Travel forum here (https://community.aarp.org/t5/Solo-Travel/bd-p/bg117) looking for travel partners — many traveling with RVs, which could be a very good solution and more room for your dog to move around on the road.    You also might try contacting an animal organization such as Best Friends Animal Sanctuary or North Shore Animal League and see if they have any recommendations, as they sometimes deal with transporting animals.  
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Question When you make travel plans, how do you save money for the trip?    Answers Travel off-season for better rates. Frequent travelers can save by using reward points, like airline miles or hotel loyalty programs to offset costs.      I use a mileage credit card for flights. Travel during mid season, on the cusp between winter or summer. I have a portion of my check direct deposit into a travel savings account. When I can, I try to book hotels with breakfast. And last of all, look for deals     I only do two things. I use airline points I've accumulated throughout the year towards an airline ticket and I budget my total trip expenditure (including an airline ticket if not enough points). Each month I put my trip expenditure funds in a vacation account. This is easily done automatically from my online savings accounts. When I go on vacation, then I buy my tickets and pay for my vacation when returning from this vacation fund. Ready to start contributing to the next months. So far I haven't overspent my account, but I haven't gone to Vegas yet either.  :-)     Taking advantage of my experience using military allotments to automatically pay bills or provide money to my spouse while deployed, I have established a seperate money market account for savings and initiated an automatic monthly transfer from my checking to that money market account. The money that accumulates is used for vacations, large expenses (homeowners and auto insurance, etc.) and unexpected expenses. Since the money is automatically transfered, it is out of sight, out of mind, and not part of my budget. It is also almost an automatic response to enter the transaction in my check book, since my bank sends me a transaction notice of the transfer. The tactic has worked for me for many years and usually results in enough of a surplus to accumulate a nice savings account.     Every day I throw my pocket change into a bucket in the hall. By the end of the year, I have enough cash for an all-expense-paid trip to the destination of my choice.   
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Question What are some of your tips for staying safe while traveling?      Answers See three of AARP's travel safety tips here.   Driving Safety Defensive driving, going the speed limit, seat belt (duh), doors locked, sunglasses, usually no radio — I enjoy the silence, Uber to an evening benefit that will include cocktails, leave on time so there’s no rushing, a little talking thru bluetooth is ok  — but make it quick, don’t look at the phone — it can wait until I get to my destination. If someone displays road rage, I try to not reciprocate. These are my primary rules.     I drive an RV so my travel tips maybe a little different: Check your vehicle daily for any mechanical issues (ie: lights, turn signals, tires,everything in place, etc.) Give yourself plenty of space all around you and for braking. Drive rested never tired!!  Always drive ahead and antiscipate leaving yourself an out if need be. Breakup the trip with a rest stop every two hours if you can and if you have a dog, give him a potty break too. Plan your route the night before and use your phone apps to see if the weather, road conditions, construction or detours do not suprise you. Limit your driving to maybe 300 miles a day, so you don't wear yourself out trying to get where ever. I also use RV Park Review both on my phone and computer, so that you get an opinion on your next campground. It can save you alot of grief. Driving an RV is a full time job and should be treated in that manner because that is alot of money in your hands. Happy trails!!   International Travel Notify your credit card company where you are going. This will avoid having your card declined. Keep a photocopy of your passport, license, medication perscriptions separate from your other documents. If possible, email a copy of each to yourself. Place items like a wallet in your front pocket instead of the rear to make it harder for pickpockets. Keep some small bills in a pocket separate from your wallet so you don't have to open your wallet or purse for small purchases. Use pants or purses which have both zippers or snaps plus flaps covering the pocket, again making it harder for pick-pockets When possible, wear purses in the front, not the side. Sign up for The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to enroll your trip with the nearest consulate or embassy. (They will contact you if there is a travel warning in the country you are traveling in.) Find out the emergency number in the country you are going to. (Not everyone uses 911) Don't write about your trip ahead of time on Facebook or Twitter. Keep money in a few different places, and remember where they are. If there is a room safe, use it. Take what you need when you go out. Ask the hotel clerk, AIrbnb host, etc., for tips about keeping safe. They have to deal with their local communities and probably can share some good tips. Ask about taxis, ride-sharing services, walking, transportation, local food kiosks, and places to visit and to avoid.    On my recent trip, I used a very thin money clip type RFID protected wallet in my front pocket and a "decoy" old wallet in my back pocket. The money clip wallet held ID, some money, and two credit cards. The decoy only had garbage papers in it to pad it.   I would only email the documents if you have zipped and password protected or encrypted them. A Google documents account would let you store them encrypted online but be accessible from any computer or phone.   I would add a wallet cleaning before the trip to the list and leave at least one credit card in the room safe in case your wallet gets lost or stolen. There are lots of things you may not need in your wallet during the trip, especially on an overseas trip. Like a Sam's Club card, Costco card, casino cards, etc.   I recently found several brands of pickpocket-proof clothing. They aren't cheap, but not outrageous for quality clothing. There are shirts, pants, and jackets for men and women in casual and dress levels. Clothing Art has a video on their website on how their line works to prevent pickpocketing.     More Tips for a Safe Vacation Alert your bank and credit card company to your travel plans. If you don’t, charges you make might be declined if you’re in a location where you don’t usually travel.   Also, depending on where you’ll be visiting, you may need to arrange for special health insurance coverage prior to departing.   Surf the internet wisely. Hotel room, coffee shop and airport Wi-fi networks may be unsafe. Learn how to use a VPN, purchase your own mobile wireless hotspot, investigate purchasing a SIM card for use in a country you’re visiting, or set up your smartphone to serve as your computer’s Wi-fi connection. In your hotel room, use an Ethernet cable instead of in-room Wi-fi to connect to the internet.   Bank wisely. And avoid conducting financial transactions using your smartphone or computer on the road. Visit a financial institution in person.   Protect your airline frequent flier miles. Your airline miles represent valuable currency to fraudsters. Protect your miles by making the password on your airline account at least eight characters and hard to guess and check your mileage balance regularly.   Make and store copies of important documents. Make color copies of your passport, driver’s license and insurance cards, and emergency contact information. Give one copy to a trusted contact back home, put one copy in your travel bag separate from where you keep the originals. Scan a third and upload the files to a password-protected location in the cloud such as Google docs or OneDrive.   Protect your privacy on social media. Share your photos on social media, but wait until after you return home. Even if your privacy settings limit who can see what you post, it’s risky to let on that you’ll be away from home.   Only take the essentials to protect against theft. Do you really need to bring along expensive jewelry? Can your smartphone replace a high-end camera? Apart from the risk of carrying and showing off expensive items in public, your hotel room isn’t as secure as it might seem. Hotel key cards can be hacked — it doesn’t even have to be a valid card, and some members of the hotel staff can open in-room safe deposit boxes. 
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Question What are your best packing tips? How do you pack for a weekend getaway vs. a week or multiple-week trip?   Answers Take less, not more. We went to South America for 6 weeks with a carryon and tote bag each. Once you ditch the checked bag, you'll never go back. It's incredibly freeing.     For longer trips, I always pack old underwear and t-shirts that would otherwise be thrown out or used as cleaning rags. I leave the old stuff behind as I travel, and can use the space for souvenirs, instead of bringing back a bunch of dirty laundry.     I am a 45-year flight attendant who has traveled extensively — both domestic and international destinations. Whether packing for work or simply a short getaway with my husband, we always follow a couple simple packing rules that seem to work in keeping the quantity of what's packed down and taking only that which you'll probably use.     A few days prior to departure, spread out all intended items for travel on a bed and re-evaluate them in the following days.That is, will I really use this? Can I coordinate a couple items to reduce the number of garments taken? (layering is a good way to go) Reconsider the weather at the destination, ensuring appropriate clothing is packed in lieu of that which would be too cool or warm. It's this prior evaluation that helps to pack only that which you'd probably use and/or need, depending on the length of the trip.   One last suggestion is in the packing process... and that is to 'roll' up items, allowing more space to be available in the suitcase.  Items that roll-up nicely include underwear, T-shirts, slacks, etc. These items can then be placed around the sides of the suitcase as well as in other small areas not taken up with other essentials. Any space that can be saved allows an additional item or two to be packed — or a last-minute item just thought about. Packing with a purpose is our motto!         Make lists on your computer. One for electronics, one for toiletries (we keep ours constantly packed) and meds, predeparture (cancel papers, hold mail, alert only a couple of trusted folks, alarm company, police), and other categories. Update those checklists and change the computer file. Make sure someone has access to your vital medical and financial info. (I wear a medical bracelet with a flash drive in it — lots of info in there. Or park info in the Cloud where only your password can get it.) Lay out clothes, shoes, etc., and pack smart. (If your hotel has a coin laundry, pack pods of detergent, dryer sheets — which keep your suitcase smelling nice!) Take collapsible "walking poles" — your body will thank you. Pack sensible shoes!!! Check your smartphone settings to not run up a huge bill (especially if traveling outside the US!). When you know you are organized, it is far easier to relax and enjoy yourself!     I travel quite a bit on a motorcycle so have learned that "less is more". My #1 tip is to use packing cubes, particularly the ones with a compression zipper option. As some others have mentioned, I also roll my clothes as much as possible. It's amazing how many rolled up articles of clothing will fit in one compression packing cube! I also pack clothing that will mix and match as well as things that I can layer should the weather cool off. I have other tips too but these are the ones that allow me to travel by motorcycle for 8-9 days with only two saddlebags and a small travel bag on the passenger pillion.     I keep major items packed in a small suitcase (for short trips, for longer trips contents just get dumped into the bigger size one): There is a permanently packed cosmetic-medical kit (just needed on September trip to Germany where travel mate got stung by several wasps - had Benadryl stick in medkit), also containing toothpaste, toothbrush, etc.. Some of the items — like medical, dental, are in a smaller transparent plastic bag which fits into the bigger one; it contains everything in tiny sizes and never gets disassembled, only refurbished (such as the Benadryl stick upon my return) and not put away until everything is back in there. The full cosmetic kit is extremely practical. It consists of outside covers which are non-transparent and there is a handle. It can be carried like a purse when zipped together. Opposite the two covers, inside, are transparent equivalents, each inside zips. It's easy to see the contents of the two inside compartments that form, when all-round outside zipper is unzipped (to make this easier to understand, it's like a little like a book with handles). The permanent suitcase also contains rolled panties, 3x7 each in a cheap flexible plastic bag inside a bigger cheap flexible plastic bag. For short trips, I can remove 2x7, which get replaced upon my return. It also contains a tiny short terry bathrobe and a pair of black C. — can't think of the famous name, they are sold as street wear — shower shoes (in plastic bag because it may be wet on days of departure, and the shower shoes could even double as an extra pair of  streetwear shoes) — in Europe you don't always get enough towels, if any; there is a pair of very light-weight winter-silk pyjamas, which wash easily and can double as warm underwear in an emergency but are not too hot in summer. There are a few more small essentials that I cannot think of right now. 
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Question How do you like to spend your time at the airport when you arrive a little early or have an extended (or unplanned!) layover?   Answers Samantha Brown shares her tips:   Well, I probably spend a fair amount of time on my phone, clearing emails, checking the singles sites (ha!), reviewing Amazon deals, etc. But, the most fun is people watching. So grab a cup of coffe, get a good seat close to your gate, and just enjoy the many diverse and interesting travelers.      I haven't traveled in 20 years, but I will be visiting my sister who lives in Florida in about 2 weeks. I will spend my free time at the airport probably people watching some of the time and working on one of my puzzle books.   . We usually have an iPad or another device with lots of reading material downloaded to pass the time. I also enjoy visiting with the folks sitting in the terminal waiting for a flight like me. You can meet some pretty interesting and nice people as you wait for your flight to depart.     On long delays, I like to walk around and get some exercise. I always travel with music and a good paperback, as well as reading on my iPad. Sometimes it's just nice to have the book in hand, and it doesn't weary the eyes as much as screen reading.     Don't forget to bring a good dose of patience with you. I know that may be hard for a lot of folks but there are some things you cannot control. So why get your feathers all ruffled? Stay calm and carry on. You'll feel better when you finally reach your destination.   What I do while in the airport: Buy a bottle of water $4.00, grab a newspaper $1.50, and finally 4 mixed drinks or beers, so I can sleep the whole flight. The skies are not friendly anymore !      I spend the time in the bar!     I always get to the airport early. I usually bring my ipad and play words with friends (50+games). I bring 2-3 mystery books and several magazines (Bottom Line Personal, Morningstar Fund Investor & Dividend Investor, Readers Digest).     I normally arrive early but like to spend the time walking, especially if it is a large airport.  After that I do some praying/meditating, read, or play games on my iPad.      Some of the bigger airports have great shopping — and often items are marked down.  Airports offer a variety of stores, and they are small and easy to manage.  
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Question  How do you prevent excess international cell phone charges? Answer When travelling overseas and using a Consumer Cellular mobile phone, use caution. I just finished a work trip aboard a cruiseferry in Scandinavia. I was in and out of mobile phone range and have roaming enabled on my phone to text and call home. When I returned, I had over 50 minutes of incoming voice charges ($0.30 per) from a Skype number that is probably a telemarketer or scammer.   The thing is, my phone never rang nor was voicemail left. After a long call with CC customer service, they said that the charge begins when a foreign tower receives the call over a landline. If the signal to your phone is weak or no longer vald, it doesn't matter. You are charged for the minutes it tries to ring you.   CC was unwilling to correct the charges saying it is "out of their hands".     My advice whren roaming abroad is to keep your phone in airplane mode until you wish to make a call or send a text. This means you can't receive calls you may want. If you wish to stay available for incoming calls, you may have to eat excess charges when telemarketers and scammers call your number.           I too received a large phone bill with a different company while travelling overseas. I was charged for incoming text messages that I never opened. Now I either just turn the phone off or use airplane mode. I find I use my tablet more but only where there is free wifi. 
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Question Are there any tips on how to travel with a bunch of meds? We will be away from home 4-6 weeks.   Answers I use those little plastic containers that have 7 sections in them, one for each day of week. I have one for morning meds, one for evening. I preload those. If needed, they can easily be carried.   As much of a pain as it might be, when traveling to some countries, like Mexico, it is safer to have prescriptions in their original bottle. If you know you don't have those issues, I'd suggest using the little plastic weekly pill holders. If you need to travel with things that must stay cold, use a small cooler tote bag with a freezer pack. If flying, those items will need special security screening, but they are allowed, with no restrictions on liquid amounts.  Finally, always keep medications in a travel bag that you carry, never in luggage that will be checked or stowed away from you. Primarily this is in case you get separated from your luggage.     I use Ziplock sandwich bags for extended trips. Lightweight, easily packable. All my supplements go in one bag, the scrips go in separate bags for each one with the labels attached.      Really no easy way. I put all my meds in a large ziplock, in their original packaging bottles that are labelled. Then I preload the weekly case I have that has removable day containers, for travel day only. At the first destination, I preload the entire container for the week. I have to carry 14 different prescriptions in varying size bottles. But it doesn't really take up that much room.     I put each prescription med in a single snack size zippie, along with the paper rx that I get from the drug store as my receipt. It takes up very little space and meets the requirement of having the prescription to go with the med. I don't worry about otc stuff. If they take that from me I'll be OK.     I get my prescriptions from a national chain (Rite Aid) locally. If I run out of anything on vacation, the local Rite Aid where I'm staying can look it up and refill it for me. I've done this twice in the last few years. They also have my insurance on file so it cost the same no matter where I'm at. I'm sure it works at other chains also.     I take a plastic case with a week's worth of meds in the correct day and time slots all set up. In addition, I take enough of each med for the length of my trip plus 5 days. These I place in very small (1 x 2) labled plastic bags (obtained at Walmart or a craft store). All of the small bags are then placed in either a quart or gallon bag. When a week is up, I set up another week from the small bags. And i never, ever pack any meds in checked luggage. I do this with non-prescription as well as prescription meds.      We use an app called CareZone, and we also keep a printout of prescriptions from our doctor, which we print from his website. We also have our meds listed in the Emergency feature of our iPhones, and on a pocket card in our wallets. We carry drugs with us, purchase supplements at our destination, and pack empty sorters. We then fill the sorters when we arrive at our destination. You only have to set up this system one time, then you're good for a few years. We travel by plane monthly to international destinations and have never had problems.      The answer to this is different whether you are traveling within the U.S. or out of the country. When in the US, we usually put meds in baggies, and by using a pharmacy that's nationwide, we can get refills anywhere.   However, when traveling internationally it's best to keep them in the original pill bottles. One reply suggested carrying a copy of the prescription, but then you run into the issue of whether it's readable (if handwritten) and whether a customs person is able to read English. It may only delay you for a short while as they get things sorted out, but that could be stressful and even cause a missed flight.     Due to a gastrointestinal issue, my supplements are just as important to me as my meds. I place all my meds in their containers in an Eagle Creek bag with a zipper top. It is flexible and durable and waterproof. I use the Lewis N. Clark AM/PM Folding Pill Organizer. Each organizer has 16-slide locking durable plastic pouches. I fill each pouch in the organizer prior to my trip. It is so easy to organize your supplements and simply take a pouch with you. I have 3 of these organizers in case I am on a 21- or 28-day trip. It is fantastic. I take both the Eagle Creek bag and the AM/PM organizers in my carry-on luggage.     Just be sure you are not staying anywhere overnight before your flight if you are carrying a freezer pack. It will defrost and will count as a liquid and will be confiscated. Happened to me.     We purchased the small craft bags from Walmart in the craft section. They are about 2 x 3 and 3 x 4 in size and are the ziplock type. We put am in one bag and pm in another bag. Then we put all the am in a larger gallon ziplock and the same for the pm. The bags won't open like the pill boxes and they hold quite a few big pills. (I take 3 of the horse sized Omega 3-6-9 daily plus 4 GI meds that are close to it in size) My mother's pills, my pills and my husband's were packed that way and we traveled by cruise and car for a month. The gallon baggies are flexible so no trying to make sure the pill boxes are packed in such a way as to not open during travel  We reuse the little baggies each time we travel. Or as cheap as they are, just throw them away.    Hope that helps!     Your meds should always be in your carry-on bag in the container they come in from the pharmacy. Plus the name on the bottle should always match your name exactly as the name on your passport. All non-prescription meds should be in the original bottle they came in. Always put the bottles in clear plastic bags so you have them all together.     I've done a lot of traveling, both short trips and long trips, domestic and abroad, business and pleasure. I have never ever been confronted about the pills I carry in ziplock bags. My scrips come in 90-day supplies, which are large bottles or packages. I am not inclined to carry all those bottles with me when space is in short supply. I do put them in my carryon always, but I will continue to use ziplocks for most trips.     To add to my comment, no one takes narcotics. If we had to travel with them, I would definitely carry them in the original pharmacy bottle. I also ask the Dr. for written prescriptions for each med or a list from the pharmacy. The pharmacist can give you a list that includes illustrations of the specific pills. Keep that information in the baggies with the pills. I even obtain prescriptions for antibiotics and have them filled before we travel just in case someone gets sick while we are out of town. So far, we have never used them, but they are definitely a good investment if your Dr. will agree to it. Try going to a clinic out of town or on a cruise ship or out of the country! We also consolidate our bags, so more than one person's pills are in the same bag. We put the carryon with all the pills through the scanner. I have never had any problems wherever we have traveled. TSA changes daily. So does protocol. Much may depend on who you get at the scanner!  Happy travels!     We just returned from 24 days in Alaska and Canada. We took small craft bags, put our daily meds/vitamins in each little bag. I put all the bags in one large ziplock bag with a typwritten list of everything in each bag. We kept liquid meds in the unopened boxes with pharmacy labels on them. No one ever said a word about our meds. We carried them in our backpacks, I use sugar-free coffie flavoring, which I put in 3 one-ounce bottles in my backpack. Hubby and son carried their CPAP machines. CPAP gave us trouble in Canada. Security not customs. We missed our Canada flight by 1 minute because security practically dissected the machines. This happened both in Vancouver and Toronto. (Missed our flight in Vancouver, slept in Toronto airport over night) So, if you carry a CPAP give yourself extra time in the airport security lines outside the US. We survived! And the trip was GREAT!     Hi I'm glad you had a great trip regardless of the problems with the CPAP machine but your trip could have been a complete disaster the way you were carrying your other drugs. Never put coffee creamer in little bottles in your carryon (you're lucky they did'nt think it was a an illegal drug. Vitamins should be in checked luggage, and always take your pills in the bottle you get from the pharmacy (the pharmacy can always make up smaller bottles for you so you can take along what you need). I always take Tylenol and allergy meds in my carryon, and all my other prescriptions go into a quart-size plastic bags in the original bottle. Make sure the name on your bottle is the same exact name as on your passport. I also take an opiod pain patch and it can be a problem, so always have a letter from the prescribing Dr. telling what it is and why you take it. I travel to Europe a lot, which in itself  can be a problem because some meds are illegal in some countries. I'm not trying to tell how to travel just how to be safe and have a fun time. 
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