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We are fortunate to be able to travel for an overnight stay at least once per month due to my husband's membership in a golf club. I purchased a plastic storage box with lid (plastic shoe boxes are great) and filled it with the things we like to travel with: our preferred shampoos, conditioners, shower gel, lotions as well as disposable razors, toothbrushes (in plastic brush holders), toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorants, sunscreen, makeup remover, scissors, nail care tools, a corkscrew, wet wipes, hand held mirror, etc. I initially purchased small bottles of the hair care and mouthwash and refill as needed.
The plastic box fits easily into an overnight bag. Should anything break or leak, the plastic bin keeps the spills inside the box! This is a bag that is always checked when we fly (scissors and possible fluid restrictions). Biggest tip here: Once back from a trip, "reload" the bag immediately as you never know when you will need to use it! We arrived home on a Saturday from an out of town wedding and Sunday evening we were on the road for an out of town family emergency. Enjoy the ease!
By Tahloolabelle from Ventura, CA
I would like to share a vacation savings tip I have discovered. I purchase a book called Entertainment 2006 at www.entertainment.com (a new one is released each year) for the area where I'm planning to vacation during the summer.
These books usually go on sale for about $10 by that time of year, and they offer savings on two-for-one meals, entertainment, etc. Some coupons need to be mailed in ahead of time, but most are good on the spot.
By Bobbie G from Rockwall
I have been using the Entertainment Passbooks for years. Some of the schools sell them as fundraisers. Ditto for some grocery stores (Kroger, Tom Thumb). My fav are the "buy $50 and get $5.00 off" coupons for some of the grocery chains.
A few years ago, I was at a hotel in Assisi, Italy and I slipped in the tub (which had no bathmat, no rubber grids nor any grab bars) while taking a shower and broke my arm in two areas. Needless to say, my vacation ended and I returned home, cutting my 25 day European vacation to 14.
When you are on vacation, your home is most susceptible to burglary. One trick to create the illusion that you are home is to put a few lights on a timer. Individual timers can be found at the hardware store. Program the individual lights to turn on for a while each night. It's also a good idea to have someone visit your house every couple days to make sure mail, newspapers, or packages aren't piling up.
When traveling, I use a bottle carrier fabric bag I bought at Target in the $1 section. I use it to carry my hair products, creams, deodorant, sunscreens, etc. Everything is tidy and organized together for myself and the kids.
This isn't really a very frugal tip, just a very convenient one. I don't have a bladder control problem but when I travel, I use Depends (or generic brand).
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Call State tourist offices and convention bureaus for travel and coupon information before traveling
By T. Preston
Pack "everything" in clear plastic bags!
The airport people appreciate it, & its much easier to find things!
Well, I don't know if this is "preparation," as you have to do it when you get to your destination, but my advice is to always visit the Tourist Information Center or Welcome Center in the town you are visiting FIRST, before going to any attractions. We learned this in Huntsville, AL, when we went to the Welcome Center the day after we went to the Space and Rocket Center-- they had coupons we could have used to save several dollars on admission.
Indeed, those gallon and 2 gallon size plastic bags are great to pack clothing. TSA people have said to me that they do not like touching women's personal items and the clear bags are a perfect option. I pack t-shirts, slacks, shorts, sleepwear, underwear, swim suits & beach coats in the bags too. If your suitcase gets wet while waiting on the luggage cart on the tarmac or while going up the conveyor belt into the airplane, you will discover how wonder those plastic bags can be....your clothing is not wet!!!
An important first step when preparing for a trip is to make an all inclusive list of things to take along with you. This list can save you time and money. This page contains ideas and tips for making lists for traveling.