Archive for June, 2008

Avoid those airline checked bag fees: Get smart with your carry-ons!

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Photo by Sheree Zielke

No, not all the airlines are charging for the first checked bag, but will they hold out for much longer?  We may as well get used to traveling lighter now in anticipation of even higher fees down the road.

Those fees will really add up at $15-$25 per checked bag EACH way when flying to that dream destination.

But do you really need the extra baggage?  Probably not.  If you choose an appropriate carry-on bag and pack more efficiently, you’re likely to find that you don’t miss hauling around all those extra suitcases.

There are great travel sites with clever tips designed to help you beat the airlines at their own game.

Read on . . .

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Rising cost of airline tickets and cruise ship fees shouldn’t mean the end to travel adventures!

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Cruise Ship Lights by Sheree Zielke

It’s all over the news.  Increases in airline tickets.  Increases in airline handling fees.

In Europe, Ryanair is charging for everything from booking your ticket with a credit card to simply showing up at the airport.  Cruise lines are upping their prices, too, and all in an attempt to offset the rising price of fuel.

But should the increased fees mean less travel?  Or maybe it’s just time to get really creative when booking or packing for our travel adventures?

Read on . . .

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Foreign travel can be dangerous: Visit these sites for traveler reports

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

Alberta Pond by Sheree Zielke

This is a typical sight from an Alberta highway.  A quiet little pond, so innocuous, so charming.  But many countries, many lands have similar vistas – sights which look perfectly safe, including those sights in some of the more questionable areas of the world like Egypt and Africa. 

How can a traveler know if a decision to explore a new world is a smart decision? 

Luckily, there are many web sites that can help you make an informed decision.  Some even have links to other travel tools (like currency conversion charts) that make travel to a foreign land a whole lot easier.

Read on . . .

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Adventurous Travel or Dangerous Travel? Which would you choose?

Friday, June 13th, 2008

Queen Isabella Causeway Texas Morning by Sheree Zielke

There’s “adventurous” travel and then there is “dangerous” travel.  Since neither my husband nor I are members of the CIA, nor are we navy seals, we have placed limitations on our travel experiences.   Those limitations recently affected one of our travel decisions: an end-of-summer trip to Belize.

Having reviewed a recent Canadian foreign affairs travel report, we have decided that Belize is not the place for us – at least not this year.

Read on . . .

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Calgary Traffic – Beware visitors! Save on gas and your nerves!

Wednesday, June 11th, 2008

Calgary Downtown Skyline from Deerfoot Trail

I love my province, and I love our two biggest cities: Edmonton and Calgary.  But I hate the traffic congestion.  Monday, I went to Calgary for a Photoshop seminar.  Arriving at 5 PM was my first mistake; my second mistake was staying on the Deerfoot Trail.

The drive was perfectly normal.  3 hours from the west side of Edmonton to the edge of Calgary.  What happened after that was, in a word, ridiculous.

Read this if you want some good advice when traveling to Calgary.

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Travel Attire – Making good choices might improve your flight experience!

Monday, June 9th, 2008

Grumpy Traveler

My husband can be a pretty grumpy traveler, but even he, with a few moderations to his attire, can be a happy traveler.  He had to stop wearing his lace-up shoes through airport security, for one thing.  But here are a few more tips to help make your flying experience more palatable.

I have a great deal of respect for the Frommers’ people and their travel advice.  Recently, the travel site gurus ran a piece on what NOT to wear when flying.  The advice is simple, yet comprehensive.  It’s great advice for anyone who hasn’t quite figured out that, yes, Virginia, no matter what they taught you in school about being non-judgmental, on a plane, you will be judged by the clothes you wear.

Read on . . .

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Alberta’s Love Affair with Wheels: As long as it rolls, there’s an event or a place to honor it!

Monday, June 9th, 2008

Harley Davidson

Albertans have an extreme passion – they love their wheels.

Car wheels, motorcycle wheels, train wheels, farm machinery wheels – as long as it rolls – Albertans will pay tribute.

Here is a quick look at just a few of the events and museums in the province that might be intriguing to all those wheel fanatics out there.

Classic Black Car Headlight by Sheree Zielke

Wishing you safe and happy travels,
Sheree Zielke

You are welcome to comment.  Let me know if my blog has helped you.  Or add a comment if you feel I have missed an important point.  I don’t mind correction.  A “dig” on a social networking site would be appreciated, too.  Just use the handy links below.  Subscribe to the Picajet Blog to receive notices of replies to your comments, and new blog postings.)

July 4th – Independence Day Fireworks in New York City!

Saturday, June 7th, 2008

M&M Statue of Liberty Guy

With millions of people, all eager to catch a glimpse of some of the world’s best Fourth of July fireworks, where does a visitor – or for that matter - a local New Yorker go to catch the show? 

It’ll be my first visit to New York during the 4th of July, and I wanted to do this visit up right.  I have already done Christmas and St. Patrick’s Day – so I am expecting great things from New York City on Independence Day.

But I am glad I did the research first.  Here’s what I discovered about how best to enjoy the Fourth of July in New York City. 

Read on . . . 
 

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Philadelphia, a Sunken Ship, Treasure, and a Boy Pirate? Oh my! Count me in!

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

Gargoyle by Sheree Zielke

Okay, count me in.  I’m hooked.

When I began my initial research into Philadelphia, I wasn’t expecting to find, of all things, pirates.  But lo and behold, yes, indeedy, matey, I am on my way to see pirates.

Or rather what is left of them. This July.  On a day trip from New York City.

I have decided to ignore pre-arranged babysitting tour company all-in-one tours, and arrange the trip myself on the Amtrak train.  It’ll save my husband and I a bundle of money.  And I am a sucker for the unexpected.

So, the pirate exhibit in Philly was a most delightful unexpected surprise.  I can hardly keep my timbers from shivering.

Read on . . .  (more…)

New York City? Try a day trip to Philadelphia! It’s easy!

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

New York City Double-Decker  Bus Tours by sheree Zielke

We are off to New York City in a few weeks, but we’ve been there lots of times.  And, while we LOVE the Big Apple, we are adventurous travelers.  So, it’s time to step out of our comfort zone once more.

The “City of Brotherly Love,” – that’s Philly, for those of you not in the know, is just under 2 hours away, by train.  This historical hub of the USA sounds very intriguing.

But how to get there?  And what to do?  And how long do you have to do it?

Read on . . . (more…)