Friday Travel Dreaming – 10/11/13

Happy Friday! As always it’s time for travel inspiration for the weekend.

Should some people just stay home?

This post got us chuckling this week – and kind of shaking our heads in dismay. It’s a list of actual complaints received by Thomas Cook Vacations, by dissatisfied customers. A few gems:

“On my holiday to Goa in India , I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don’t like spicy food.”

“The beach was too sandy. We had to clean everything when we returned to our room.”

“We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish.”

“It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England. It took the Americans only three hours to get home. This seems unfair.”

“They should not allow topless sunbathing on the beach. It was very distracting for my husband who just wanted to relax.”

And my personal favorite: “No one told us that there would be so many foreigners.”

To read all of them, click here.

Giving Money to Child Beggars is the Least Generous thing a Tourist can do

This is a real heartbreaker, and for me personally it’s one of the single most difficult situations I face when traveling. I have come across this situation many, many times and it is so hard to say no or walk away. But this article outlines in great ways how giving to child beggars just perpetuates and reinforces a system that produces child beggars. Trafficking and abuse is very often behind this – give your money to a worthwhile, vetted NGO instead.

Delete your Cookies when Booking Travel online

Remember to clear your computer’s cookies or switch browsers when booking travel online. It could save you a lot of money – as this post by Johnny Jet shows. On a recent search, just by switching browsers he saved almost $200! But don’t worry if you don’t have multiple browsers, you can just clear your cookies on your computer.

The Vacation Habits of 9 Highly Effective People

These successful folks prove that you should use your vacation time.

Great Resource for free Volunteering Abroad

A travel writer colleague just introduced me to this great new resource for volunteering your way around the world – Global Help Swap

Things not to Waste your Money on

Here is Smarter Travel’s list of the Seven Things You (Maybe) Shouldn’t Buy Before You Travel

This week’s roundup of travel contests & giveaways:

 Some rights reserved by Dimitry BWin the DreamPlanGo Escape to Paris trip

And the Travel Channel is also giving away a Trip to Paris – along with $1500 in spending money!

Win a Forbes Travel Guide Adventure to Santa Fe

Enter to win a trip to Turks and Caicos: 3 nights and airfare

Visit Florida Sweepstakes by Southwest Airlines – includes air & hotel

Here’s a chance to win a Kindle Paperwhite and an entire set of the The Traveler’s Handbooks.

Don’t forget to follow our Facebook and Twitter pages to get as-they-happen updates on the best travel giveaways, deals and resources!

About Shelley Seale

Shelley is a wanderer and student of the world, yoga chick, voracious reader and dog lover. She pounds the keyboard as a freelance writer, author and publication designer, based in Austin, Texas when she isn't traipsing around the globe. Shelley has written for National Geographic, USA Today, The Guardian, The Week, Fodor's, The Telegraph and Texas Monthly, among others. Shelley has performed a catch on the flying trapeze, boarded down a live volcano, and was once robbed by a monkey in India. But she doesn’t know how to whistle.
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