Top 10 Safe Travel Tips – Plan Ahead Before You Travel – Be Safe, Be Smart

If you will be traveling this year, you need make sure you know all there is about being safe. Traveling can be fun as long as you plan ahead and play it safe. Following these top 10 safe travel tips will help you along the way.1. Keep your cash stashed away in different places. Stash some in your luggage, some on you and anywhere else you can think of. If someone robs you, you don’t have to give them every single stash. Just give them the most obvious one. This is probably your most important safe travel tip to know.2. Pay attention to your surroundings. You should always know where you are at. If you driving note the mile markers and the exits you have past.3. Keep expensive items at home. Don’t ware your most expensive jewelry while on vacation. All you’re doing is telling everyone that you have lots of cash. So you run the risk of someone taking your items from you.4. Tell a trusted family member where you are going, what way you are driving, and what time you expect to get there. Call them when you get there and make sure they know you will be calling. In case you don’t show up where you should be, your family knows exactly where to start looking.5. If you are driving, pack a survival kit according to the weather. So if you are taking a vacation in the winter, then you should have a small bag with a blanket, matches, flashlight, food and water. Summer should be the same thing, except maybe more water. Use your judgment, but always plan for the what ifs.6. Always have maps with you. You should have a map that has your entire route planned out on it, and then get a better map of the city you are going to. It’s always smart to have a few maps of the surrounding cities as well. You never know when you may need it.7. If you are traveling with kids or other people, make sure you have a copy of their picture on hand all general information such as height and weight.8. Have photo copies of all your important information and store it in another spot. Things as your id, insurance cards and passports. If you have all these on hand, store copies in a suitcase.9. Don’t drink and drive or drive when tired. These are two of the main causes for accidents. If you are going to have a drink or two, then get a hotel room, so you’re not driving while drunk. Driving tired is just as bad as driving drunk.10. Leave your credit card and check books at home. I would suggest taking one credit card for an emergency, but the rest should be at home. You should also have a photo copy of the credit card you are taking and leave the copy at home. In case you need to cancel the card, you have all your information available.Following these top 10 safe travel tips will help you have the best vacation available.

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Using Your Skills To Find The Right Overseas Property Agent

As the popularity of buying a second home overseas or indeed relocating to sunnier locations increases, so does the choice of estate agents to use. This growth together with the huge increase in Internet users across the world means that it is more difficult to establish the good trustworthy agents from those that do not really have the buyer’s best interests at heart.Although the Internet provides a fast and efficient way to research properties, developments and estate agents without having to leave the comfort of ones home, it is not always easy to establish the reputation and integrity of an agent on first look at a website or in the first call. You can always go with your gut instinct but there are also crucial points to look out for and guidelines you can follow as a client to ensure you will be happy with where you are putting your money.Firstly, if an agent is happy to put their contact details on a website you know that they are clearly happy for clients to call them and potentially also visit them in their offices. While this seems a simple step, a cynic would wonder why a reputable agent would not have their contact details on a clear page of their site.A second tip would be to look out for client testimonials on a website. If other clients are happy to have their experiences and comments published by an agent you can bet that they would be happy to recommend the services of that agent.Another tip would be to call the developer direct. If you are dealing with an experienced agent who has good working relationships with the developers whose properties they sell, they would probably be happy for you to verify their authorised agent status with the developer.Murcia AgentsOne location that is currently seeing a rapid growth in terms of development and new residents is Murcia in Spain. Here you will find many new golf resorts being constructed by a variety of developers. It is fair to say that initially this was fuelled by the popular developer Polaris World who is constructing a number of luxury golf resorts in the area.Due to their success there are more and more resorts of a similar style being built in Murcia such as Hacienda del Alamo, Novo Carthago and Peraleja Golf Resort.These new types of resorts offer everything from golf to luxury hotels from spas to shops and restaurants, all located within a short stroll of the properties themselves.However, with the popularity of these resorts comes more “agents” from all over the world looking to cash in. Of course all estate agents are out there to make money but it has become even more important to choose carefully. For many people buying a holiday home abroad is realizing a dream, so much care and attention should be given to using the best agent. In all probability more than one agent will be contacted so don’t be afraid to ask some blunt questions. Ask if they have offices you can visit when you are out, ask to contact some previous purchasers of property in the resort to verify an agent’s integrity and never be “bullied” in to making a decision fast.Try and apply some basic logic when searching for an estate agent online:Were they helpful when you contacted them or did they try and pressure you?Did they know the area and developments well?How many have they sold in the development they are promoting?Can you see some testimonials or chat with some previous buyers?Any reputable agent with your best interests at heart should be able to provide some, if not all of the above information.Some developers even run additional schemes to indicate a higher level of agent credibility such as the Polaris World Golden Partner status, so where this applies always try and opt for an agent displaying the necessary authorizations as this means that in most cases, the developers themselves have conducted some due diligence on the agent before awarding the “higher” agent status.Other useful memberships to look out for are AIPP (Association of International Property Professionals) and NAEA (National Association of Estate Agents). Whilst these memberships can never provide 100% protection they do indicate that the agent in question has undergone additional due diligence and is willing to think about the image they promote.

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The Benefits of Student Exchanges

Maybe you’ve considered travel. I used to think that I would travel when I was done school. Then, it occurred to me: there’s no time like the present. Going on exchange was the best thing that I could have done. Here are a few reasons that studying abroad is great:

1. It’s cheaper.

When you travel as a student, it is often cheaper than traveling later in life. There are a few reasons why: you can get great student discounts (get an ISIC card: an International Student Identification Card), you don’t mind staying in hostels, and sometimes the school will help you pay.

2. It’s more organized.

If you have been scared to travel because you don’t want to do all the paperwork of getting a passport, a visa, and you don’t know how to book a flight, don’t worry. If you go on an exchange through school, your school will help you with all of the international paperwork. They can answer all your questions. You might not have a lot of experience traveling: they have a lot of experience sending students on exchange. Don’t be afraid to benefit from their experience.

3. It’s the real experience.

Often when people travel, they take cruises or tours. As much fun as a Contiki tour is, you will probably never get to know any of the places that you visit. You would only hang out with your friends who you came with. If you go on exchange, instead of staying at each place for only a day or so, you get to stay for a few months, or even a year. This means that you will really get the feel for your destination. You will make friends with people who are locals. You will have enough time to really absorb the new culture.

4. It’s a rewarding (and awarding) time.

You can get certain awards, prizes, and fellowships for studying abroad. You can even get some when you return from your trip. If you are worried that you won’t be able to pay for your trip, find out about some internationalist awards that you can win, and take the time to apply. There are also special loans for students who plan on studying abroad.

5. It’s more fun to learn.

When you go on exchange, you will take courses at another high school or college. Yes, there will be school. But the real learning that you do when you are on exchange is not done in the classroom. You will learn things at school, but you will be amazed at how much you learn when you are just having fun. Go sightseeing, see everything you can see. Sign up for field trips and get out there. You’ll remember more about your art history if you go see the Sistine Chapel!

If you are going to a country where English isn’t the primary language, now is the time to learn that language. Take some courses (even buy some tapes) before you go. Don’t be afraid to make a mistake in that language. Just practicing will help you improve. You will find your trip is more rewarding if you make the effort to learn a second language. (Be careful: often when people find out that you are an exchange student, they will want to practice their English with you. However, you can politely explain that you are here to practice their language and they will often understand).

6. It helps you learn about yourself.

You might think that you have traveled to another country to learn about that country. But you will find that you also learn more about your country when you travel because you will start comparing your culture to another culture. When other people ask you questions about your country, you might learn new things about your history, geography, and politics. You will come back to America knowing more about who you are and where you come from.

7. It looks great on a resume.

In the end, after you have traveled the world, seen all the sights, and come back a better person, you will be able to put this exchange on your resume. You will be able to explain your experience for jobs, future education, and other positions that you apply for.

8. It’s easy to finance

If you are concerned about financing your exchange, don’t worry. You can get special loans to help you. Check out the link below.

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