I am heading off to the Viceroy Resort in Riviera Maya tomorrow and am really looking forward to my stay! Things have been extra busy around here, so I have been counting down the days to relaxing on the beach with great friends!
Prior to any trip, I have a bit of a checklist that I go through that I wanted to share.
-Check your flight times on the airline’s website. Airlines frequently make schedule changes, oftentimes last minute changes. Check again right before you leave for the airport in case of any flight delays. Most airlines have apps you can download on your phone to make this easy!
-If you are arriving to your hotel well before check in, bring anything you might want if you can’t check into your room right away. This way you can relax on the beach or squeeze in a spa appointment, and won’t have to dig through your suitcase to find what you need.
-Check the weather where you are traveling, especially what the weather will be when you arrive. You don’t want to show up in sandals to find pouring rain, or be wearing a sweater to find 100 degree temperatures!
-If you are traveling for your honeymoon, make sure to bring a copy of your marriage certificate with you. Some hotels will ask for some kind of proof in order to provide complimentary honeymoon amenities.
-Call your credit card companies to let them know where you will be. This way they won’t put a hold on your credit card for suspiscious charges. Also call your bank if you plan to use your debit card.
-Send family members a link to your hotel or copy of your itinerary so they can get in touch with you if needed
-Make sure you have all travel confirmations with you
-Last but most important, make sure you have your passport if needed! Even if you forget everything else, this is the one thing you just can’t forget!
Do you have any other tips to share?
One question I am always asked is how/when/where is the best place to get cash when traveling abroad and dealing with exchange rates. So, if you’re getting ready to jet-set somewhere fabulous for the holidays I have two words for you: DEBIT CARD.
Photographer: Patrick Ng
Debit cards typically end up getting the best exchange rates, so always be sure to bring this along with you. You will need to pay a fee to use a foreign ATM, but even with the fee the exchange rate is the best. And since you will need to pay a fee for each transaction, take out larger amounts each time.
And last, always be sure to call your bank to notify them ahead of time of when and where you will be traveling. This way they won’t put your card on hold thinking the foreign charges are fraudulent.
For more information on foreign exchange rates, check out these sites: XE & X-Rates
I have a lot of couples looking for recommendations on guide books. So I’ve decided to put together a Travel Guide Round Up!
Luxe City Guides: These are my favorite travel guides. Luxe City Guides are mostly restaurant and shopping focused guides. Their recommendations always lead you to these amazing little local spots that I never would have on my own! They also have a mobile app.
Assouline Travel & Lifestyle Books: These books are fabulous for anyone who wants an interesting take on the history of a certain locale. These books read like a story and serve as a colorful tribute to the destination they are about. Not to mention they make great coffee table books.
City Secrets Guides: These guides take travelers away from all of the other tourists, crowds, and craziness and point them towards the types of places a friend would tell you to go to. City Secrets Guides are the true Insider’s Guides.
There are also some great websites that help with research before I head out on any adventure.
FATHOM – FATHOM is an independent travel website from the founders of Daily Candy and prides itself on being the “website that reflects the way that wired, global-minded travelers plan, purchase, & share their travel experiences.”
Fabsearch – “The Ultimate Travel & Going Out Guide” – I love checking this site for fun places to go out for dinner or drinks in any city. It’s a complete list of all the hotspots.
Other great sites to check out: Travel + Leisure, DailyCandy, & Conde Nast Traveler.
What is your favorite travel guide?
Need help planning your honeymoon? Contact us!
Let’s face it, most travel souvenirs are pretty tacky- obnoxious t-shirts, plastic magnets and ugly shot glasses. I love these products because they are capable of sparking a memory from a fun travel experience. And these are much cuter than those Hawaii plastic license plates with your name on it…
1. Ork Neighborhood Posters 2. Little Brown Pen Paris Calendars 3. Jonathan Adler Needlepoint Pillows 4. Destination Maptotes 5. Maya Brenner Necklaces 6. AHeirloom Cutting Boards
It’s time that the old saying “Don’t always believe what you see on TV” be officially changed to “don’t always believe what you see online.” This is especially true when it comes to reading hotel and travel reviews online.
One important thing to realize is that people are more inclined to leave a negative review of a hotel than they are to leave a positive one. This is especially true in regards to higher end properties, because the more expensive a hotel is, the higher a guest’s expectations will be.
It’s also really important to look at the date that a review or complaint regarding a hotel was made. For example, if there are a bunch of complaints about the food posted in 2 years ago but no recent posts about it, then most likely the issue has been resolved.
The fact of the matter is that all travelers are looking for something different in a hotel. So what one person saw as a positive aspect of a hotel might be a negative for you. A place that’s just perfect for newlyweds just shy of 30, won’t always be paradise for an older couple looking for a different experience.
Read through reviews, but don’t put too much weight on each review. If a vast majority of people love a hotel, there is a good chance that you will as well! Don’t be deterred from a few negative posts here and there. Some people are just impossible to please!
So what online review sites do you trust? Who do you take advice from? Your safest bet is to read more than just one or two reviews of a hotel and look for an over-arching opinion from a combination of opinions.
- TripAdvisor – hotel reviews worldwide
- Oyster – the hotel “tell-all”
- Room77 – for all the information about rooms you don’t find on the hotel site
I hope this is helpful! When in doubt, your best bet is having someone plan your honeymoon for you, like Ever After Honeymoons! Interested in honeymoon planning assistance? Contact us!