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Our Favorite Packing Tips

Our Favorite Packing Tips 0

Whether you burn the midnight oil the night before a trip or make checklists and pack ahead of time, these are the 3 major packing tips we always try to stick to...

Roll, Roll, Roll Your Clothes

Don't fold. Folding takes up more space. And if you REALLY want to economize your space, pick yourself up some compression bags that you can pack full of stuff then squish down in your luggage so you still have room for all of your souvenirs! 

Don't Forget the Laundry Bag!

We always forget to bring an extra plastic bag or two for dirty laundry - don't make the same mistake we do way too often. Also some zip locks to protect your clothes from uncapped deodorant, leaky perfume/cologne, lotion, make up, and any other goopy horrors from the bathroom counter. Wet bathing suits will also need a bag too! 

Be Versatile

Pack clothing that can be reused - no one is judging, you're on vacation! No one will know or care that you wore the same top three different times. Bring pants you can wear with several different tops, sundresses you can wear with sandals to sight see and then glam up with a nice pair of earrings for dinner, and gentlemen can bring along a light button up to dress up his shorts and t-shirt. It's easy to bring so much that you don't even wear half of it. What I find helpful is laying out what I think I want to wear to each activity on our itinerary so you can see in front of you exactly what you can swap out for a more flexible choice.

  • Sharon Talpins
Why We Love Cruises

Why We Love Cruises 0

If you have never been on a cruise before, you should absolutely think about it for your next escape. We enjoy the fact that you can have as relaxed or as adventurous of a vacation as you want. It's also a vacation that lets you get a lot of bang for your buck! With gourmet food available to you almost 24/7, you get lodging, travel, and entertainment all inclusive. Let's take a look at some of the main reasons why we love to cruise:

1. All Inclusive

When you go on a cruise vacation, you have so much more than shore excursions to enjoy. You won't be bored - there is so much going on and something for everyone. Nightly music, Broadway style shows, comedy, and casino gaming are just some of the options offered. You can also enjoy the on board spas, art auctions, poolside activities, and special classes like jewelry making or ice carving demonstrations. And don't get us started on the food! Gourmet 3 course meals nightly or casual dining at the buffet, there's something for all tastes. 

2. Fun for Everyone

Cruises are our favorite way to travel with a crowd! If you have babies, children, or teens in your crew there are special on board activities for them to enjoy, while you kick back at the pools, spa, or casino. It's also very easy to split off and do your own thing making sure to reconnect at dinner every night. And have you checked out some of the amenities? Marvels of modern engineering, cruise ships are like floating cities with shopping, dining, music clubs, ice skating rinks, bumper cars, pools, and so much more!

3. An Ocean View

One especially great thing about cruise vacations is that you can enjoy a breathtaking ocean view. After a fun-filled day, we love to walk around at night, lay out on deck and stargaze. We always bring our binoculars with the hopes of catching a whale or dolphins. One time, we were treated to watching a lightening storm way off in the distance. Truly unforgettable! 

4. Excursions and Adventures

What is better than being able to unpack once and then island hop?! When you're cruising, you can choose from multiple itineraries, which allow you to explore multiple ports. Most of our personal cruising experience has been on the Caribbean islands and we enjoy how diverse each one is with their own unique history, culture, and cuisine.

5. A Variety of Experiences

Wine tastings, snorkeling, a day at the beach, bus tours - every stop offers so many opportunities for adventure and exploring! Some of our favorites include swimming with sting rays in Antigua, enjoying the pink sand beaches of Bermuda, and tasting the best coconut rum we've ever had on St. Thomas. No matter what you're into you can find something to enjoy on a cruise vacation. 

  • Sharon Talpins
5 of Our Favorite Coconut Rum Cocktails

5 of Our Favorite Coconut Rum Cocktails 0

What's not to love about coconut rum? It gives you the same warm and fuzzy as regular rum, but goes down oh, so much smoother! If you're not down to drink it just on the rocks, it's also a fun, popular, and flavorful addition to cocktails. Here are just a few of our favorites. 
  • Sharon Talpins
5 Best Travel Apps

5 Best Travel Apps 0

While vacation is all about a change of scenery and recharging your batteries, it's also about getting out seeing some different sights and meeting new people! It can be a challenge and you want to make the most of your time. But of course there is an app for that! Check out the most highly rated ones and let us know in the comments if you use and love one that is not on this list!
For seasoned travelers and new explorers alike Sidekix maps out walking directions and stop suggestions based on your interests. Learn more about local businesses, museums, and cafes and explore your surroundings.
Yelp lovers can use Zomato in countries and locations where Yelp is unavailable. Find reviews on the best restaurant and cafes when you are away for home. Order food, bookmark your favorite places, and view restaurant menus.
Are you a music lover? Download Songkick Concerts to find music acts and live venues nearby. Handpicked suggestions are displayed based on artists you already listen to making it easier to search for artists you want to see.
Make the wait at the airport a little more bearable with Loungebuddy. You will need to enter your credit card, airline status, and lounge memberships, but then the app will tell you which lounges you can access at any given airport. Even for people like me who don’t have any of those things, the app will still let you know about any free lounges or ones you can purchase a day pass for.
This app is my personal favorite and go to! You don't even need to be on a vacation to reap all of it's benefits - we even use it to explore new towns in our own home state. Simply enter a city and TripAdvisor will show you all of the top rated spots with plenty of user photos so you can get the scoop on everything from attractions to shopping to the best places to eat.
All are free to download and available for both Android and iOS. Download to your tablet or smartphone. 
  • Sharon Talpins