8 Tips For Eating Healthy While Traveling

If you travel for work or pleasure, you know that healthy food can sometimes be hard to come by. Or I should at least say there are so many temptations out there that the healthy options seem few and far between. Being prepared is 75% of the battle when it comes to eating healthy while traveling. It definitely requires a little planning and a special nutritional strategy. Luckily, you can adhere to your healthy eating plan with a little extra work. These 8 tips for healthy eating while traveling provide some solid ideas to staying on track while on the go.

1. Location – When you’re choosing where to stay, it’s all about location. Let’s say you’re traveling for work and you’ll be in the same location for at least a few days. Finding a spot that’s close to healthy resources is key. Is there a grocery store nearby that you can run to for healthy snacks and/or meals? Are there healthy cafes or restaurants within walking distance that you can stop in for a bite to eat? It’s easy to make the excuse that you can’t eat healthy while on the road if there aren’t good options around you. Don’t make that your excuse. Choose as wisely as you can to set yourself up for success.

2. Accommodations With A Kitchen or Kitchenette – One of the best ways to ensure healthy eating while traveling is to have access to some type of kitchen. Extended stay hotels, vacation rentals and Air B & B are all great options if convenient to your location. If a kitchen isn’t available, having a refrigerator in your hotel room for some healthy options is a great alternative. The point being that if you have either a kitchen or a refrigerator, you have the ability stock up with good snacks and easy meals. Things like fresh fruit and vegetables, bottled water, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, nuts, natural peanut butter, rotisserie chicken and canned fish are fantastic options that are easy to store and don’t require a lot of prep work to create a quick meal or snack.

3. Ship Items Before – Another strategy would be to ship your favorite dry goods to your location before hand. Protein powder, beans, nuts, canned tuna, bread and quick cooking oats are all items you could have sent prior to your arrival so that you have some healthy options waiting for you.

4. Carry A Cooler – Tote your health food around with you. Stock a cooler full of your favorite healthy snacks, sandwiches, bottled water and anything you need for the day. This options works well if you can drive to your location and bring your cooler with you. If you’re flying, you’ll need a collapsible cooler to pack in your suitcase.

5. Research Restaurants In The Area – Do your research before you go. Even if you have access to a kitchen or a refrigerator, you still may want or need to eat for a few meals. Find out what restaurants are in the area and which menus offer healthy options that interest you. You can plan any outings to one of these restaurants and know what you’re going to eat when you walk in the door.

6. Protein Powder – Protein is often the hardest thing to come by. Healthy eating on the go is made much easier if you can bring some protein powder with you. Even it it’s a back up, you know you have a good protein source to go to if you can’t find a viable option. Sometimes your healthy eating strategy might require using a combination of options. For example, finding some fruit and vegetables might be easy but grabbing a protein source might be pretty expensive. In certain cases, protein powder can fill in the gaps.

7. Supergreen Supplement – It’s often times very difficult to get the correct amount of vegetables in when traveling. This is the perfect time to incorporate a great supplement like Amazing Grass, Green Defense or Greens +. A supplement is just that – a way to supplement your diet. While this shouldn’t be your mainstay to getting in vegetables, it can always be used as a way to up your micronutrient intake and get some greens into your diet.

8. Bring Homemade Snacks – Bring homemade non-perishable snacks with you. Homemade granola or protein bars, protein muffins, kale chips and homemade granola or trail mix are all wonderful options to take with you. If you have healthy food with you, chances are that you’ll eat that healthy food rather than seeking out the junky stuff.

If you’ll notice (or maybe you already have), the common theme here is that you need to be prepared. If you’re committed to a goal of weight loss, a health goal or just want to ensure you’re eating good quality meals, you’ve got to set yourself up for success. Healthy eating while traveling is totally doable but it does require a bit of planning and strategy to make it work.

8 Tips For Traveling Abroad

1. Pack light- Nothing is worse then having to lug your stuff all over the country. I’ve seen people traveling with a giant back pack on their back, a smaller one in front, a fanny pack, and dragging a suit case. Trust me. You DO NOT need to bring that much on your trip. I use to pack heavy and realized that I didn’t use half the stuff or could have easily bought it anywhere. Ask yourself, Do I really need this?

2.Make sure you documents are in order- Your documents will be your life line.

a) Make sure your passport is not about to expire- Obvious isn’t it? Still you’d be surprised by the number of people who forget to do this. One time my friend and I were going to travel to China and what do you know? His passport had already expired. When did we find out about this? AT THE AIRPORT! Needless to say I wasn’t a happy camper.

Some countries check if your passport is about to expire in 30-60 days. Make sure you do not fall in this category. If you do,make sure to apply for a passport as soon as possible prior to your departure.

b) Look into the visa for your country – Different places require different visas. Sometimes a visa can take months to get. You don’t want your travel plans interrupted because of this. Call the local embassy for more information.

c) Scan and email to yourself all important documents – It’s smart to make copies of your passport, insurance, dipolma, drivers license, etc. It’s even smarter to scan them and then e-mail them to yourself. So even if you lose everything, as long as you can access the internet,you’ll have access to all your relevant documents.

Now you may ask why you should scan your college diploma? Well, you never know if you’ll fall in love with a country and want to live there for an extended period of time. Having a copy of your diploma saves you the hassle of having to get someone email it to you. This goes double for any and all documents that you may need on your travels.

3. Research where you are going- If you plan to do a lot of traveling, research the areas you will be traveling to. Make sure to have a good bit of information on where you are going. If they speak a different language and customs, try to learn as much about them prior to

departure.

Recently, a friend traveled to Venezuela without doing his research. Turns out the current president, Hugo Chavez had changed the official currency exchange rate, meaning that my friend got ripped off every time he drew money out of an ATM. If he had done his research, he would have known to take US dollars with him and to exchange it in the black market.

a) Making calls – Can you take the cell phone you already have and just buy a SIM card? Or do you have to buy a new phone? You may consider getting a phone that works in many countries then make calls using Wifi.

b) Electric outlets – Make sure you have the right plug for electrical outlets. Also, look into the voltages. I blew up a $200 electric tooth brush because I’m a moron. Turns out that Korea uses 220 volts instead of 110.

c) Do you need a return ticket? – some countries will not allow you to enter without a return ticket.Make sure to have a return ticket. Google is your friend for finding out this information.

d) Also, Lonely Planet travel guides will help you. I’m the type who likes to go to a new destination with no real plan and just play it by ear. Regardless, travel guides will save you a lot of headaches by telling you where to stay and what to do.

4. Budget your trip- Budget your expenses and how much you will be spending on your trip. It is good to do a budget so you don’t over extend yourself. Be careful when traveling with others. Getting into arguments about money leads to everyone being pissed. Be sure to discuss how you will share the expenses. Keep track of the money split and write it down.

5. Speak the language- Even a couple of phrases will help. Some places you’ll find an abundant amount of English speakers, usually the younger people around universities. Other times, you’ll be completely screwed.

6. Renew all your cards- If you plan to travel for an extended period of time, then try to renew all your credit cards, licenses, etc. Most credit card companies won’t deliver your card internationally. So you’ll have to get a friend to mail your new credit card to your new address (if you’re there long enough) . That means you’ll be dealing with other countries mail service. And believe me, this can be a real pain.

7. Travel Insurance- This one is going to be a personal choice. I’ve heard nightmare stories about travelers getting into accidents and having no way to pay for it. Personally, I’ve never traveled with insurance and have had no problems…so far…Make your own decision. There are lots of plans to choose from. Use Google and figure out what plan is best for you.

8. Be safe- It pays to be secure. Invest in money belts, mini locks, travelers checks, and exomesh.

a) Money belts – When I first arrived in Colombia, one of the locals told me not to take out my wallet. Smart idea. Another smart idea is to buy a money belt, then put your important documents and the majority of your money into it. If someone robs you at gun point then you can just hand them whatever is in your pockets. Hopefully they won’t tell you to get buck nekkid.

b) Mini locks – Use these to lock your zippers shut. If you’re traveling on a budget then chances are you’ll be sharing rooms with other travelers. Most travelers you meet will be cool. Others you’ll want to kick in the junk. And then there’s the SOBs who will take your stuff. The mini lock is the first line of defense against this. This way you’ll know no one rooted through your bags.

c) Exomesh – Your back pack ain’t going nowhere with the exomesh deployed. Exomesh is basically a wire net that you wrap around your luggage and secure it to something that does move. If someone wants to steel my back pack then they gotta saw through the radiator first.

Pacsafe is a company that sells exomesh and secure travel gear in general.

d) Travelers checks – Travelers check can be your emergency back up if you should happen to lose all your money and credit cards. If you’re staying in one place for some time, then keep your travelers checks stashed there. The beauty about travelers checks is even if you lose them, you can call up the bank that issued them and get them replaced.

Traveling in the Tropics – Safe Travel Tips

When you leave familiar shores behind and travel in the tropics, the first thing that strikes you is the extreme contrast in almost everything. People, climate, sights, sounds, streets, and even the sky and the moon look different. Next stop, Mars? First timers can take considerable time to unbefuddle their senses. And then it becomes a race to take in as much of the new experiences as possible in the comparatively short time at hand. In this mad rush make sure you don’t fall victim to a range of hazards that may easily be avoided with a little bit of common sense and some precautions.

First and foremost, travel in the tropics means you’re basking under the glorious warmth of a stronger sun than you’re used to. As you revel in that gorgeous tan you’re developing, it is worth remembering to take precautions against sun burn and dehydration. Carry your sun block and drinking water around wherever you go, and not just when you’re at the beach. Dress in cool cottons to keep the humidity at bay, and wear a hat and sunglasses.

While swimming in the sea, watch out for jelly fish stings and other similar hazards that can put a damper on your holiday cheer. If you discover a seemingly idyllic and deserted beach where the sea appears calm, think twice, thrice or more before you dive in. Some areas have strong undercurrents that just might send you on your last vacation in the sky. Always get enough information from local authorities about the best and safest places to bathe before deciding to strike out on your own, whether it’s for a swim or a hike.

Eating out is an exciting adventure when travelling in the tropics. Strange cuisines ranging from fragrant to the grotesque tempt and dare your palate into trying things you normally would beat away with a stick. Well, you’re on holiday and it’s only natural to want to try anything once. This could result in anything from irritable bowel syndrome to Delhi belly. Well, now would be a good time to remind you to carry toilet tissue with you if you intend to be away from your hotel for a long time. Most toilets, especially in rural areas, do not stock tissue and you can save yourself tonnes of embarrassment if you have some with you!

You don’t have to have something exotic to upset your stomach; even a mundane salad or iced drink can make you double over from bacteria in contaminated water. Avoid salads and ice unless you’re sure of the source. Wash all fresh fruits thoroughly or better yet, eat only what you can peel. Make sure you carry medication for holiday tummy or food poisoning recommended by your doctor at home. Drinking from the tap is not an option in most countries. It’s safer to carry your trusty brand of bottled water with you from your hotel if you intend to be out all day.

Mosquito repellents and bug sprays are a must when travelling in the tropics. Consult your doctor about the need for malaria vaccinations before you set out. While in the tropics try and stay indoors during late evenings when the mosquitoes swarm around. Shut doors and windows or use screens if they are available. You’ll be better off in the hilly areas where you get to enjoy all the benefits of tropical countries without the hassle of blood sucking insects.

Before travelling to the tropics, discuss with your travel agent and your doctor, the need for certain immunizations such as yellow fever, depending on the area you’re travelling to and general ones such as tetanus shots. Some countries require mandatory shots, while others don’t seem to stress the need for any. Consult your doctor about the need for rabies shots if you intend to travel to remote areas or be in contact with animals. It would be in your interests, especially if travelling with kids, to check what applies to you.

Carry your own stock of first aid supplies including pain killers, band aids, disinfectants and even sterile disposable needles in case you need an injection are a good idea if you intend visiting remote areas. Make sure you get up to date information about seasonal viruses that are about at your tropical destination. Get authentic information about occasional health hazards such as bird flu, dengue fever, or other epidemics that may be making the rounds.

Read up on the place you intend to visit. Having an idea of what to expect, local customs, and food habits will smooth your transition and help you relax into your vacation more quickly. Getting to know the local people and gaining an understanding of their way of life and culture enriches your vacation in many ways, giving you a far deeper perspective of the place you are visiting. But don’t abandon your native caution entirely as you relax, as touts or scammers can be rampant around tourist spots anywhere in the world. Watch out for pick pockets and petty crime. Never pull out a wad of notes in public. Always keep small change in separate pockets for easy access.

Travel broadens the mind they say. But if it’s to the tropics it does things to your soul as well. It’s an energising experience that brings people back again and again, to the extent that some go native and decide to stay on. Make sure that your experience of the tropics is a dream rather than a nightmare by following these basic and common sense safe travel tips.

Photography Tips While Traveling

Whether you’re embarking on a family vacation or your family reunion, it’s going to be a special time. When we think of trips we’ve taken, we tend to remember them best with photographs. Here’s some ideas to enhance your vacation as well as your memories of them.

Location Preparation

1) Since you know where you’re going (that’s a minimum requirement), doesn’t it make sense to check out the location before you get there? Create a list of attractions, accommodations, special points of interest, amusement areas, shopping, etc. A good source to help you do this is: the Places and Travel section of msn.com ( [http://groups.msn.com/Browse?CatId=179])

2) Figure out the photo opportunities for each appropriate venue. Anyone can take a “that’s nice” picture of the kids at an amusement park. Wouldn’t you rather capture a “WOW” photo that could be hung over the mantle?

3) Depending on the location you’re traveling to, you can see what books are written about them that highlight the best photo opportunities for the entire area

4) If you’re cyber-savvy, start at http://www.google.com and search using different combinations of: your destination, best photography locations, for images of the location, scenic spots, etc. The options are endless.

5) If you’re off to a non-big city area, scout out the national parks in the area. The great thing about national parks is that the scenery is usually so breathtaking, that a so-so shot looks

outstanding, just because of the subject. Once in http://www.nps.gov, do a search on photos and you will be presented with terrific shots of all the parks

Photography Preparation

OK, you’re either traveling through or you’re at a wonderful location full of photo opportunities. You began this leg of your trip at the crack of dawn and as you’re pulling into the most scenic overlook for 400 miles, the sun is just starting to crack the horizon.

You instinctively pull the car over, grab your camera and your tripod, and look for the best spot to set up. Just one tiny little problem… YOU FORGOT YOUR TRIPOD! Rather than smack yourself on the forehead then, why not plan these things now, before you leave?

Your list should include AT LEAST the following consideration…

1) Do I need to repeat – BRING YOUR TRIPOD? It doesn’t take up much room, and as explained at http://www.best-family-photography-tips.com/tripod-photography.html, tripods allow you to capture entirely new categories of photographs that won’t be possible without one

2) Memory. Of course, bring all the memory you have, but also pack your portable storage device (explained at http://www.best-family-photography-tips.com/digital-photography-tutorial.html)

3) If your camera has a hot shoe, bring your external flash, and any additional equipment that can be used to help with bounce flash

4) Remember your external shutter release cable for those long exposures. How else are you going to get that “angel-hair” look of the waterfalls?

5) Don’t forget the basics like: batteries, battery charger, camera bag, and additional lenses and filters (if applicable on your camera)

6) And just in case you need it, bring the manuals for your equipment.

Finally, don’t get so wrapped up in taking perfect shots that you don’t enjoy the trip. Remember to use the tripod so that you’ll be in at least some of the photos.

Article courtesy of Best Family Photography Tips.com, where you can see some sample pictures including more photography tips.

Copyright 2005 Robert Bezman. All rights reserved.