5 Travel Tips For a Stress-Free Vacation

We go on vacations to relax, especially when we are under stress. If you want to leave all your worries at home, make sure you follow the tips given below. These tips will also help you make your vacations stress-free and memorable. Read on to know more.

Get rid of the stress

Do you have limited vacation days? Of course, you can’t spend the rest of your life on your trip. So, you may use that limited time and get the most out of it. This way all the stress will be gone and you will have a lot fun.

Plan your events

Keep in mind that you will waste a lot of your precious time if you don’t plan your events before the vacation. After all, you don’t want a slight snooze, a delayed flight or a cancelled tour. It’s a good idea to plan for some activities for certain days. With careful planning, you will be able to get the most out of your trip without wasting a lot of your time.

Set a collective goal

At times, it becomes stressful to travel with others as everyone has different preferences. During your trip, your partner may not want to go to see an attraction that you want to see. How can you deal with such situations or conflicts? Actually, what you need to do is plan your vacation after having discussions with your companions. And you may want to decide on a collective goal. What is your aim? Do you want to go on a vacation for adventure, relaxation, celebration or romance? If you do this, you will be able to avoid the awkward situations during your stay at your favorite destinations.

Do your research

You may want to do as much research as possible about the place you want to visit. What you need to do is read up on visa requirements, cab estimates, restaurant options and public transport, just to name a few.

Pack light

How do you pack your stuff? Do you do this in haste? Do you pack all of your stuff for your vacation or you pack only what is required? Keep in mind that too much stuff will make it harder for you travel. After all, moving heavy bags to and fro the bus station or airport is a lot of hassle. What you need to do is pack the things that you really need during your stay at a certain destination. For instance, you don’t need to take a blowdryer with you. In the same way, you should not take the heels with you if you don’t need them. Instead, you should pack your sandals.

So, if you have been trying to find a way to get the most out of your vacation and remain stress-free, we suggest that you follow the tips given in this article. These tips are helpful for people who are going to plan for their vacation for the first time. So, this article can help you as well.

Tips For Finding Holiday Apartments

If you have determined that an apartment is your choice for holiday accommodation, there are several considerations that will help you locate and secure the type of apartment that will be ideal for your holiday. Here are a few tips that will make it possible to define exactly what you want for your holiday accommodation.

Consider the Size Of The Accommodation Space

How much room will you require for your holiday space? If you are taking a single holiday and don’t plan on doing much in the way of entertaining or cooking, you may find that an efficiency apartment with basic amenities would be an ideal choice. On the other hand, you may require an apartment with a full kitchen, room to entertain, and several bedrooms for family members. Knowing what you need in order for the space to be comfortable and functional for the duration of your stay will make it much easier to focus on apartment rentals that are right for you.

Location is Important

Generally, it is a good idea to seek holiday apartments that are within a reasonable distance from the sights you wish to see or the areas you wish to visit during your holiday. After all, being on holiday is not really the time to spend your days stuck in traffic and following complicated directions. Choosing to seek a holiday apartment that is relatively convenient to all or most of the attractions you wish to enjoy will maximize your enjoyment, and also greatly decrease the level of stress you experience.

Check the online map for major roads, transport and shops. Also find out if the neighbourhood is safe at night.

Keep It Affordable

Holidays are no fun when the entire budget has been exhausted on accommodation. While you want your holiday apartment to be comfortable, keep in mind that you are working with a certain amount of available funds and set a limit on how much you will spend for the holiday apartment. Balancing your expenses will mean you can enjoy many more amusements during the course of your holiday, instead of finding that you must remain in the marvelous but increasingly boring environment of the apartment.

If you are staying more than 7 nights you can usually get a quoted rate for discounted accommodation. Stays over 1 month may require a bond to be paid and perhaps a lease to be signed depending on real estate regulations in that destination.

Apartment Facilities

Check the facilities offered are available as part of the rental rate, or find out the cost of using such facilities such as the swimming pool and parking. Internet connection is popular for many travelers but not always offered in the apartment. However, in many cities you can rent broadband wireless internet services from just a few nights or for long stays at economical prices.

A Holiday Apartment as a Cultural Experience

Consider an apartment that has a decidedly different feel than your usual living space, and perhaps try an apartment that is furnished in the local style. You may find that the experience will broaden your horizons, and as long as the space is comfortable and meets your needs, you’ll enjoy your holiday apartment and get a taste for living like the locals.

5 Most Useful Living Tips For Foreigners To Penang Island

Following the crowning of UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008, Penang has seen a boost in the tourism industry. Penang has been in the top three with approximately 11% of the total registered hotel guests of the country. The tourism industry is relatively vibrant in Penang as the average hotel occupancy rate in Penang was recorded higher than the country, with 63.5% and 64% recorded in 2011 and 2012 respectively compared to the country 60.6% in 2011 and 62.4% in 2012.

What are the 5 most useful living tips for foreigners to Penang Island? We shall explore from different angles includes transportation, food, accommodation, laundry and money matters.

Transportation

Public transportation is not as convenient as to her other neighbourhood island cities such as Singapore, Taiwan or Hong Kong. There is no MRT and subway service in Penang. As a result, transportation in Penang is highly dependent on motorcycle vehicles and cars. According to the Road Transport Department, there are more vehicles in Penang than there are people! Rapid Penang is one of the leading bus operators in Penang. Foreigners are encouraged to visit Rapid Penang if you are considering having more economical methods to travel around the Penang Island. There are various packages offered to both locals and foreigners from Rapid Penang such as purchasing a Rapid passport for only RM30 and enjoy a week of unlimited travel onboard all rapid Penang buses.

Accommodation

Hotels in Penang, in general, are located in the North-East district along the beaches in Batu Ferringgi that are mainly catered for local and foreigners for vacation, while most of the smaller budget and boutique hotels are predominantly located in the historical city of George Town. The promotional rates of boutique hotels are between RM350 to RM500 per rooms per night. Apart from the North-East District, the South-West District- Bayan Baru- is well positioned to be the upcoming and dynamic growing locations in Penang too. Due to its neighbourhood of industrial areas that housed a few hundreds of MNCs, South-West District are one of the preferred retail/shopping destination for working professionals, families, visitors and MICE (meeting, incentive, convention, exhibition). So, visitors to Penang for business purposes can explore the hotels, homestay or rental houses in Bayan Baru area.

Food

Penang street food is food paradise of Asia. Penang has won many awards and recognitions in food industry, such as ranked in CNNGo’s Asia’s 10 Greatest Street Food Cities in 2012. Renowned travel guide publisher Lonely Planet has listed Penang as top culinary sport for 2014, British daily The Independent reported. Penang was known for its hawker fare and the “must tries” were char koay teow, Hokkien mee, asam laksa, nasi kandar, cendol, mee goreng, fried oyster, etc. Foodies don’t need to worry as to where to taste these authentic local cuisines. Food will never be an issue in Penang. It is so convenient to get food all around Penang Island, as we can get many restaurants, hawker centres, and food stall, everywhere. It is not too exaggerate to mention food is at your doorstep when you are in Penang!

Laundry

Visitors who stay in Penang for a period of time may concern where to get the laundry. Laundry in Penang is conveniently found especially in those high population areas. Visitors who stay in hotel may have to pay a surcharge of laundry items which may be pricy if compared to do the laundry at laundry shops. Laundry shop in Penang normally charge price per KG for normal cleaning. Example for normal cleaning services including wash, dry and fold normally range from RM3-RM4/kg. However, bear in mind that if your clothing does not meet minimum loading per machine, normally the laundry shop may still charge the customers for minimum loading price, which may be around RM12-15/loading. Another option to save the laundry cost, visitors may explore homestay or vacation house rentals which most of them provides washing machines to their guests.

Money matters, Banking hours and Government Offices

Travellers are advised to bring a combination of traveller’s cheques, cash and credit cards. Credit cards are widely used in larger shopping malls and hotels. Smaller shops accept transactions in cash only. Foreign currency can be exchanged in banks, airports and money changers around the Island.

All government offices operate on a five-day week. Offices are open from Mondays to Fridays and are closed during the weekend. If a public holiday (for festivals and special occasions) falls on a non-working day, the following day will be declared a holiday. Working hours are from 8.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday. There is a long lunch break on Fridays (12.15pm – 2.45pm) to allow the Muslims to perform their prayers.

Banks are open from Mondays to Saturdays and are closed on Sunday and Public holidays. Bank working hours are from 9:15am to 4:30pm while Friday and Saturday observe a shorter working hours, i.e Friday from 9:15am to 4:00pm and Saturday from 11:00am to 2:00pm. Only major branches are open on Saturday. Most banks are closed on the first and third Saturdays of the month, so, visitors are advised to obtain further information on local banking hours upon arriving at their destinations. However, for financial matters that can handle through ATM machines, ATM machines are operating 24 hours throughout 365 days.

Please visit Happy Homestay Malaysia to find out safe, clean and affordable stay in Penang Island.

10 Tips For Enjoying Your Summer "Staycation"

Have you ever returned from a vacation feeling exhausted? There are benefits to traveling, but sometimes a quiet week at home is simply the more relaxing and restorative option. Many Americans are opting to save money and reduce their carbon footprint by enjoying a “staycation”.

The staycation is a key piece of jargon these days. As you probably guessed, it’s a hybrid of the words ‘stay’ and ‘vacation,’ which is actually what the noun describes: a vacation which involves staying where you are, or staying close to home.

It’s important to choose an actual beginning and an end to your staycation. Just because you’re staying at home, it’s still a vacation and it’s really important to get into that mindset.

Don’t get stuck on the idea that you’ve been there, done that just because you’re limited to a 100-mile radius. You likely haven’t even scratched the surface, so go into this with a positive attitude.

A staycation doesn’t have to feel second-best to a get-away. With a little planning, your frugal week could be everyone’s favorite “trip.”

10 Staycation Tips

1. Got a friend with a pool? Offer to bring burgers and hot dogs for everyone. You’ve supplied the food, they’ve supplied the pool – everyone’s enjoyed the day.

2. Movie marathon – rent your favorite TV series and watch the whole season over a weekend. Serve “make it yourself” pizzas, set up a sundae bar, and have bowls of buttery popcorn within reach.

3. Be a shutter fly. Take photos of your home town from the perspective of a visitor. Go to the top of the tallest building in your town and admire the view. If you take some especially good shots, you can always enlarge and frame them for gifts.

4. Check out the local country flavor. Join in the watermelon seed spitting contest at the county fair, cheer for the local minor league baseball team, and make a splash at the community pool.

5. Camping in one’s own backyard offers the sights and frights of sleeping beneath the stars, but with none of the hassles of loading up the gear and four-wheeling into the mountains. To make the experience as authentic as possible, make the house off-limits for everything but bathroom breaks.

6. Pamper yourself. If you can’t afford the time or money it would cost to go on a traditional vacation, you can spend a fraction of the money at a day spa getting a heavenly massage that will leave your body relaxed and your mind clear.

7. Be a Hotel Guest. You don’t have to get off an airplane to stay at a hotel. It’s surprisingly relaxing and you can enjoy all the fun things that most of us don’t have in our own homes: room service, brand-new little soaps, whirlpool bath tubs, pools and saunas, fun attractions in walking distance, maid service, etc.

8. Offer your home to a student in a summer exchange program.

9. Volunteer at a senior center and you’re sure to meet people with fascinating stories to tell.

10. Get a season pass to the local water park, zoo, or amusement park.