Travel Tips | MSW Travel Group

Travel Tips

Tips on How to Spot Bed Bugs when Traveling
Are you using your hard-earned, paid vacation days?
10 To-Do’s When Declining Travel Insurance
How Early Should I Get to the Airport for a Flight?
Overbooked Flights and Your Rights
6 Important Questions to Ask upon Check-in at an All-Inclusive Resort
Passport 6 Month Validity Rule      Travel to England and Ireland    
The Benefits of Traveling with a Group!     
Traveling to Bermuda     Traveling with Medications     
The Benefits of Using a Travel Agent     Anthem of the Seas
UPDATE: Extensions on the REAL ID Requirements for New York Residents      
Traveling to Cuba      NEW Carry-On Size Suggestions     
Booking Trip Add-Ons     Luggage Free      
Are you using your hard earned paid vacation time?     
Which 2 Weeks are the Best time to travel      
When is the BEST time to book holiday travel?      Experiential Travel 
Staying Safe While Traveling      8 Tips for Smooth Sailing on Your Next Cruise 
All Inclusive Vacations      5 Trends in Oahu Family Travel
2013/2014 Travel Tips

 

Tips on How to Spot Bed Bugs when Traveling

bed-bug-travel-issuesInspection:

  • Inspect any room where you will be staying for the presence of bed bugs. You generally can do this without any extra tools but a flashlight can be useful.
    • Check the mattress and headboard before sleeping.
    • Inspect luggage racks.

Use Luggage Racks:

  • In hotel rooms, use luggage racks to hold your luggage when packing or unpacking rather than setting your luggage on the bed or floor. Try to keep luggage away from bed.

Returning Home:

  • Upon returning home, unpack directly into a washing machine and inspect your luggage carefully. Remember that time in a dryer at high temperatures kills the bed bugs (just washing will generally not kill bed bugs).

Storing Suitcases:

  • Store suitcases away from your bedroom, such as in the basement or garage. Never store suitcases under your bed.

Article credit to: https://www.epa.gov/bedbugs/tips-travel

 

Are you using your hard-earned, paid vacation days?

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Want to hear a scary number?

658 Million 

It’s a scary number because that’s how many vacation days Americans lost last year! This equates to half of all workers leaving their money on the table.

Vacation time is given for a reason. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • It is important to take time off to recharge. Experts will tell you that taking time off can actually boost your productivity and make you a better worker.
  • Try not to answer emails if you’re on vacation or away from the office.
  • Turn your smartphone off at night to give yourself a “mini vacation”.

Don’t get burned out by overworking yourself. Try to take some of your hard earned paid time off, even if you don’t go anywhere. But if you do decide to take a vacation, please think of us to help you plan it.

 There are only 188 days left in 2017 

before your vacation time expires and you lose them.  

Hurry! Contact MSW Travel Group at
516-822-6500
!

 

10 Things You Should Do When You Decline Travel Insurance Because of Your Credit Card

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MSW Travel Group highly recommends that you take travel insurance through one of our reputable carriers. But if you decline travel protection, make sure you are prepared if you use insurance through your credit card or other source.

Be sure to find answers to questions like these when choosing between credit card insurance and travel protection from a reputable travel insurance company:

1. What is the maximum trip cost limit? Is it enough for my trip?
2. Is emergency medical/dental and evacuation covered with no deductible?
3. Is the amount of emergency medical/dental and evacuation coverage enough for my trip?
4. Is trip cancellation and interruption included? What are the covered reasons to cancel or interrupt my trip? 
5. Does my credit card insurance extend to my traveling companions? For instance, can children be included at no additional cost when traveling with an insured adult? 
6. If I become injured or ill while traveling, can I be transported to the nearest hospital of my choice?
7. Are pre-existing medical conditions covered?
8. If my trip is delayed, can extra expenses like hotel stays, meals and taxi fares be reimbursed? 
9. If my luggage is lost or stolen, can I be reimbursed? 
10. What if my luggage doesn’t arrive when I do? Can I be reimbursed for essential personal items to help me enjoy my trip?

If you have any questions about travel insurance or this article, please contact MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500.

Related Articles:
Why Buy Travel Insurance?

 

How Early Should I Get to the Airport for a Flight?

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Before you board your next flight, check with your carrier and note the TSA recommended times below.

Domestic Travel:
Arrive two hours prior to flight departure.

International Travel:
Arrive three hours prior to flight departure.

This allows time for parking and shuttle transportation, airline check-in, obtaining a boarding pass, and going through the security screening process, which includes screening of your carry-on baggage.

Peak Hours and Busy Airports:
Make sure you consider the time of day your flight departs and if you will hit traffic on the way to the airport. Holiday time is the busiest times of the year for airports.

Budget extra time at the following airports. 

  • New York (JFK)
  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Chicago (ORD)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)
  • Dallas (DFW)

You are encouraged to contact your airline carrier as times may vary depending on the airport and date of travel. MSW Travel Group can provide you with the information you need for your next flight. Call us at 516-822-6500 to book your next flight.

Other Related Articles:
Passport 6 Month Validity Rule, The Benefits of Using a Travel Agent, Traveling with Medications
Don’t forget to check out our website for information on the TSA Pre✓™ and Global Entry. Click here for information.

Overbooked Flights and Your Rights

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By this point we have all seen or heard about the man dragged off a United flight recently. This poses some questions:

Why do Airlines Overbook a Flight?

Overbooking flights is completely legal and a practice that dates back many years. This is to compensate for the small number of people who miss flights.

What to Do Next if You are Asked to Deboard the Plane? Go quickly and quietly. Save your breath for the customer service reps and gate agent where you can negotiate and possibly get more than the refund you’re entitled to.

Have you been bumped?  Know What to Ask.

  • When is the next flight on which the airline can confirm your seat? The alternate flight may be acceptable to you. On the other hand, if the airline offers to put you on standby on another flight that’s full, you could be stranded.
  • Will the airline provide other amenities such as free meals, a hotel room, transfers between the hotel and the airport, and a phone card? If not, you might have to spend the money it offers you on food or lodging while you wait for the next flight.

For more information go to https://www.transportation.gov/airconsumer/fly-rights

What to do Next? Book your flight with the help of a travel agent. Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 and speak to one of our knowledgeable agents.

Article compiled from articles below:
http://www.cntraveler.com/story/why-airlines-overbook-a-flight
https://www.transportation.gov/airconsumer/fly-rights
https://www.afar.com/magazine/what-are-your-rights-when-a-flight-is-overbooked

 

6 Important Questions to Ask upon Check-in at an All-Inclusive Resort

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Quality can vary from resort to resort and the check-in process is the best opportunity to get things straight. Here is a list which will help you upon check-in at an All-Inclusive Resort. 

1.) Do we need to make reservations for the restaurants (and is there a dress code?) Be prepared. Some resorts make you schedule dining reservations on the first day.

2.) What’s the entertainment schedule? Getting a schedule of the resort’s nightlife and entertainment options when checking in isn’t always a guarantee.

3.) Which water sports and day trips are included? Most mid-range tropical all-inclusive resorts will include non-motorized water sports (think kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and snorkeling) with the rate. Some, however, still charge an obnoxious fee or require strict time limits to an hour per day, or worse, per week.

4.) What’s the tipping policy? Some all-inclusives automatically add a 10 percent (or more) service charge with the rate, so ask the front desk while checking in. In some cases workers could be depending on tips as they are paid very little. At some resorts, staffers are not allowed to take tips, except for the butlers. Most Americans who know the all-inclusive drill will bring a wad of one-dollar bills to dole out to bartenders, servers, porters, and housekeepers.

5.) Are minibar items and room service free? Some resorts offer free water and others offer a full mini bar, complimentary. So ask just to make sure.

6.) Is there an upgrade option? Depending on the resort, availability, and time of year, an upgrade can be obtained for a nominal fee. Find out from the front desk what the options and benefits are of moving up.

For more information on All-Inclusive Resorts, call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500. We are here to help plan your next vacation. 

 

Passport 6 Month Validity Rule

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What Is the Passport 6-Month Validity Rule?
There are a variety of different countries that you’ll have the opportunity to travel to that will require a passport that has an expiration date that is no less than six months from the date a person has decided to travel. For instance, before even leaving the gate, when traveling to another country, your passport will be checked to make sure that your expiration date is at least six months later than your current date of travel. If your expiration date falls anywhere within six months, you can be refused boarding. This will be an unexpected inconvenience for many individuals that have performed a great deal of planning, but neglected this one important area.

Which Countries Will Enforce This Rule?
Some countries will enforce the passport six-month validity rule from the date you enter the country, while other countries will enforce the rule from the date of departure. For more information on this rule and what each country requires, use the look up tool on the US government site for passports & international travel. Click Here for Tool to Learn More About your Destination!

How to Make Sure you’re covered
Before you plan to travel to another country, it’ll be important to check your passport and find out what the expiration date is. If you do not, you could be turned away at the gate before leaving on that important vacation or business trip. It’ll be important for you to make sure that your passport is up to date and has an expiration date that extends further than the date you plan to leave the country.

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 for more information regarding this important information.

 

Travel to England and Ireland

ENGLAND & IRELAND

Now is a great time to travel to England and Ireland. The summer crowds have left, the kids have gone back to school and the cities are much less crowded. However, the weather can vary from sunny to cloudy with rain and cooler temperatures.

England:
From the modern Coca-Cola London Eye, to the historic Tower of London, the top 10 tourist attractions in London are a must-see on any London sightseeing trip. Even better, many London landmarks are free to visit, while others are available with discounted entry or special offers when using a London Pass.

There are also plenty of kid-friendly places to visit in London. Get up close and personal with underwater creatures at SEALIFE London Aquarium or explore the Science Museum, London’s interactive hub of science and technology. Both are perfect for fun family days out in London.

You could also soak up some culture at London museums, visit the Queen at Buckingham Palace, or take the perfect picture with Big Ben; just some of the many iconic places to go in London.

Ireland: Top Places to See in Dublin
Ireland’s beautiful, untamed Atlantic coast has attracted numerous visitors, including the makers of the latest Star Wars films. A visit to some of the dramatic filming locations for The Force Awakens and its sequel offers the chance to explore deep chasms and remote islands, and follow poets, dolphins and monks on Europe’s western frontier.

Some of Ireland’s most impressive attractions are right on Dublin’s doorstep – take a break from exploring the city streets by venturing out of town with one of these top excursions. View this article about Day Trips from Dublin for tips on sight seeing.

These two countries offer so much to visitors that it can be difficult to plan on your own. Tours are a great way to see the most popular sights and get a real feel for these historic places steeped in rich culture.

Call MSW Travel Group for more information on these great destinations at 516-822-6500. We are here to help plan your next vacation. 

 

The Benefits of Traveling with a Group!

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There are many good reasons to travel as a group. We have compiled a list of benefits so if you are not a fan of traveling in a group setting, or don’t like to have your vacation scheduled, here are a few reasons to hopefully change your mind.

Reasons why Group Travel is a Good Idea

Cost Effective: Reduced rates on air, hotels & excursions when booking into a group.

Companionship: travel with like-minded individuals with whom you could share the experience with and make new friends.

See & Do Things Not Available to the Public: Enjoy different experiences you might not otherwise experience as an individual traveler. Groups have influence.

Take Comfort when Traveling in a Group: Buying a simple train ticket can be an ordeal but if you travel as a group, it’s all purchased for you and you will be guided to your correct train. Some airports even have group check-ins. A small but significant part of a group is that there is safety in numbers. 

For those of you who would like to travel within your own group, consider the following group trips:

  • Family/Friend Reunions
  • Weddings
  • Birthdays/Anniversaries
  • Church, School or Sports Groups
  • Corporate Retreats
  • Retirement

When you book a group with MSW Travel Group, we do the work for you. Keep in mind that we can negotiate large group discounts and organize your entire groups itinerary details so your family reunion or corporate retreat goes off without a hitch.

If you’re thinking about traveling in a tour group or with family & friends as your own group, please call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to get more information.

Some of the above content referenced the following article “Group Travel: All the Benefits of Travelling with a Group in a Nutshell” by Robert Glazier.

http://blog.goway.com/globetrotting/2016/07/group-travel-benefits/

 

 Traveling to Bermuda

St Georges Bermuda

Bermuda is a British island territory in the North Atlantic, off the eastern U.S., known for its distinctive blend of British and American culture and pink-sand beaches such as Elbow Beach and Horseshoe Bay. This fishhook-shaped island, which celebrated its 400th anniversary in 2009, boasts the highest concentration of golf courses per square mile in the world. Its massive Royal Naval Dockyard complex combines modern attractions like the interactive Dolphin Quest with a look at maritime history at the National Museum of Bermuda.

How to get to Bermuda:Map of BDA Location
Cruise
– From NYC you can go on a 7-day cruise. There’s a ship leaving weekly during summer to the island of Bermuda.
Fly – Daily nonstop flights from the U.S. available on American, Delta, Jet Blue and United. 

What to do in Bermuda:
Beaches
– Visit one of the many beaches of Bermuda. But you must see the most celebrated pink sand of Horseshoe Bay Beach.
Golf – Bermuda has seven courses draped over its 21 square miles, several of them the beneficiaries of recent major makeovers.
Shipwrecks & Water Sports- Known as the shipwreck capital of the world, Bermuda boasts over 300 wrecks just waiting for you to explore, some dating back to the 1600’s. Bermuda also has: Coral Reefs; Underwater Caverns; Teeming Marine Life; Helmet Diving; Glass-bottom Boats; Game Fishing; Yachting; Kayaking; Waterskiing; Parasailing; Jet Skiing; Snorkeling
Royal Navy Dockyard – This historical marvel has an amazing story to tell. Over 150 years of service as the bastion of Royal Naval might in the Western Atlantic this dockyard launched ships that changed history. When you visit, you step back in time to the era of the British Empire, when Britannia ruled the waves.

Watch this video and get a taste of Bermuda:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-4JGajfTyk&feature=youtu.be

For more information on Bermuda, call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500.

 

Traveling with Medications

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The TSA has some strict rules about what you can or cannot take on an airplane but medications are recognized as an essential carry-on item that need to be packed and kept close at hand. There won’t be a problem boarding with your prescription or over-the-counter medicine as long as they are labeled and packed correctly.

  • Make A List! Create a list of all your medications: prescription and over-the-counter. Jot down the prescribing doctor, the dosage and how often you take it.
  • Pack All Medications in your Carry-On. Always pack in your carry-on and have them by your side. Never pack your medications in luggage you will check for the fear of bags getting lost or tampered with.
  • Copy all prescriptions written by your doctors, and keep those with the medications. This is especially important when you have a liquid medicine that exceeds the 3-ounce rule established by the TSA. Prescriptions will also explain your auto-injector or syringes you travel with.
  • Identify any controlled substances, such as oxycodone, that you have a prescription for. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends including a letter from your prescribing physician explaining any injectable medicines or controlled substances.
  • Keep your medication in original containers! If you have multiple medications to keep track of, you won’t be confused when it comes time to take each one.
  • Pack any refrigerated medications in an insulated lunch bag. Using a freezer pack in the cooler is good for longer flights.
  • Place all medications in a clear bag so security and airline officials can see what you have. Keep it handy so you can pull it out of your carry-on luggage when you go through the security checkpoint. If you don’t want it going through the x-ray machine, ask for a manual inspection of the medications.
  • Bring snacks and water so you can take your medication in flight if needed. The TSA prohibits bottled water to be taken past the checkpoint but makes exceptions for people with medical conditions. You could also purchase water before you board.

For more information click the links below:
Center for Disease Control (CDC) – http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/page/pack-smart
TSA – https://www.tsa.gov/travel/special-procedures AND http://blog.tsa.gov/2013/09/tsa-travel-tips-tuesday-traveling-with.html

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 with any questions or to book your next vacation or business trip.

 

The Benefits of Using a Travel Agent

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Travel Assistance
The help doesn’t end when you embark on your vacation or business trip. When a problem arises while you’re away, our agents will be there to help you through it by resolving the problem for you. Online booking sites cannot compete with a real-live person and the personalized attention you receive from a travel agent.

We Have Connections
We, as travel agents, develop personal relationships with individuals at the companies we sell. We leverage these relationships to get you things you can’t get on your own. Like that “sold out” room or the connecting rooms you want for your extended family trip when the online sites say they aren’t available.  

Save Time and Money
How much is your time worth? Rather than taking time from your busy day, spending hours researching your next vacation, let our experienced travel agents help you by using their expertise and knowledge of destinations around the world while finding you the right price.

Travel Recommendations
Our travel agents have traveled the globe seeing different countries, resorts and sights. Let them help you select the right property for you and your families needs. They focus on your particular needs, making sure you are matched up with the vacation that’s right for you.

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to find out more about the services we offer.

 

Anthem of the Seas

Quantum of the Seas in New York Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International’s, Anthem of the Seas is the 2nd ship in the Quantum class which debuted in April of 2015. Sailing from its home base, Cape Liberty in Bayonne, NJ, the Anthem is a high tech ship and offers something for everyone.

The Anthem holds 4,180 passengers and has 2,090 staterooms, 375 of which have floor to ceiling ultra-HD screens or “virtual balconies” that display real-time views of the ocean and destinations visited.

This cruise ship features innovations like RipCord by iFly, a skydiving simulator; North Star, a jewel-shaped glass capsule that rises 300 feet above sea level, providing 360-degree views from high above the ship; and the SeaPlex, the largest indoor sports and entertainment complex at sea, with attractions ranging from bumper cars, roller skating and video gaming to a circus school complete with flying trapeze classes.

Anthem sails year round from Bayonne, NJ to the Caribbean, Bermuda and even a cruise to nowhere. Sailing dates and length of cruises vary from 3 to 12 nights. 

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to book your next vacation. 

 

UPDATE: Extensions on the REAL ID Requirements for New York Residents

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From the Dept. of Homeland Security website, New York has been granted an extension allowing Federal agencies to accept driver’s licenses until October 10, 2016. 

 “The REAL ID Act is a federal law passed by Congress after 9/11 that establishes specific federal requirements for state-issued driver licenses and identity cards in order to prevent terrorists from evading detection by using fraudulent identification. The law prohibits the use of a driver license or identification card that does not meet the federal requirements to access certain federal facilities and, eventually, at airports.”

Currently, New York residents can board a domestic flight with their current state-issued driver license or ID card until October 10, 2016. DHS will then announce any advisories and notifications to the traveling public online. Other forms of ID can be used in place of the Real ID card, such as a valid US passport or the NY state Enhanced Driver License (EDL). For the full list of acceptable ID’s, go to the TSA’s website: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification

For more information on this program, click here to go to Homeland Security’s website.  

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to book your next vacation. 

 

Traveling to Cuba

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After 50 years, Cuba and the United States are re-establishing diplomatic relations. That being said, travel to Cuba has been very limited for Americans. Over the past couple of years, there have been a few tour operators who have been selling Cuba tours to American vacationers under one of 12 approved categories without needing a license in advance.

TOURS: One approved category is a cultural exchange or people-to-people tours. The education-based tours are not luxury tours by any means. The tours facilitate cultural exchanges and include personal encounters with Cuban artists, farmers, fishermen, doctors, mechanics or other locals.

CRUISES: Carnival Cruise Lines will be the first cruise line to sail directly from the United States to Cuba. As part of their social impact-focused brand Fathom, which will debut in April 2016, Carnival will offer bi-weekly cruises to Cuba starting in May 2016. The cruise tour will provide “cultural, artistic, faith-based and humanitarian exchanges between American and Cuban citizens” under the people-to-people definition.

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to find out more about the unique travel options Cuba has to offer. 

 

NEW Carry-On Size Suggestions

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You Might Need New Luggage

Recently, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced a new initiative “to optimize the accommodation of carry-on bags given differing carry-on bag sizes and airline policies.”

The new suggested carry-on size:
21.5 x 13.5 x 7.5 inches

This “means that theoretically everyone should have a chance to store their carry-on bags on board aircraft of 120 seats or larger,” according to IATA.

Current carry-on baggage allowances average 22 x 14 x 9 inches.

Shrinking the baggage size allowance means that trusty carry-on you’ve learned to pack a weeks worth of clothing into may soon be too big.

*Article originally featured on the mashable.com, click here for full article.

 Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 today!

 

Booking Trip Add-Ons

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You picked your destination, booked your airfare and hotel. Wondering what to do there?

On mswtravelgroup.com, you will find a link called Trip Add-Ons on the home page of our site. When you click the link, you are taken to our partner site where you can find interesting tours and excursions to book. 

To search for tours and excursions, find the search function on the blue bar located on the left hand side of the website. You can search by country, city and dates. Once you have made your selections, you can book it directly on the site or with your MSW Travel Group travel agent. 

 Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to book your trip add-ons today!

 

Luggage Free Logo

 

Luggage Free: A Luggage Courier Service

Luggage Free is a specialty service offering you the option to send luggage ahead to nearly any destination, worldwide, to avoid the inconvenience of carrying, checking and claiming bags – even going through customs. On-time delivery is guaranteed, allowing you the ability to avoid unnecessary aggravation, save time, and protect your possessions – simply and in style. 

 You can receive a special coupon for 
$25 OFF
your first shipment 
only from MSW Travel Group

For more information about Luggage Free services and the offer, 
please contact MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500.

 

Are you using your hard earned paid vacation time?

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Did you know?

  • About 1/3 of Americans do not use all of their paid vacation time.
  • Only 25% use all of their vacation time. 
  •  And 15% don’t use any of their paid time off.

Things to keep in mind:

  • It is important to take time off to recharge. Experts will tell you that taking time off can actually boost your productivity and make you a better worker.
  • Try not to answer emails if you’re on vacation or away from the office.
  • Turn your smartphone off at night to give yourself a “mini vacation”.

Don’t get burned out by overworking yourself. Try to take some of your hard earned paid time off, even if you don’t go anywhere. But if you do decide to take a vacation, please think of us to help you plan it.

Watch this video from CNBC: Relax and take that vacation! CNBC Video 

 Call MSW Travel Group today!
516-822-6500 

 

The Best Time to Travel

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Q. When is the best time to travel?

A. After Thanksgiving and first week in December!

 It’s obvious that the busiest times of the year to vacation will be the most expensive because they are in high demand. Those times would include:

Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year’s and school breaks such as President’s week, Spring break and even most of the summer vacation.

Right after Thanksgiving, a lot of destinations are not as busy and can be a great value if booked ahead of time. Business seems to slow down in between the rush of the holidays. Destinations like theme parks, cruises and beach vacations all are a bit quieter. So you may get to ride your favorite ride over and over with no lines!!!

The holidays could be a hard time to get away but it may be worth your sanity to take a break in between them.

Please contact MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 for more information.

  

When is the BEST time to book holiday travel?

MSW Gift

Article credit to: www.kayak.com

Book Now to Save!

The holidays are approaching quickly. With that being said, we get asked a lot on when is the BEST time to book holiday travel plans. We have received information from KAYAK who analyzed all the details on this very topic.

When to Book:
BEFORE MID-OCTOBER! For Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve travel, on average the cheapest airfares were found between September and mid-October. Procrastinators beware: after mid-October, airfares for Thanksgiving increased up to 17%, 51% for Christmas and 25% for New Year’s Eve. For those traveling abroad throughout the holiday season: try to book international travel as soon as possible!

MSW advises to book as early as possible to get the best price, non-stop flights and the seating assignments you want.

When to Travel: 

Thanksgiving - For those traveling domestically over Thanksgiving may want to depart Monday and Tuesday and try returning on Thanksgiving Day, Friday or the following Tuesday; returning these days saved travelers more than 20%. International travelers should try leaving close to or on Thanksgiving Day and return mid-week the following week. 

Christmas - For domestic travelers, try departing as close to the 25th as possible – in 2012 this saved travelers more than 20% on average. Try to avoid departing and returning during the weekends surrounding Christmas (fares were up to 24% above average). For international travel, trips 3-5 days in length centered around the holiday offered the best savings. 

New Year’s Eve - For domestic travel, shorter trips centered around New Year’s Eve/New Year’s Day displayed the cheapest fares are more than 15% cheaper than weeklong getaways for both domestic and international travel. 

Don’t wait too long! There are: 
56 Days until Thanksgiving 
84 Days until Christmas 

Last minute family plans and gift shopping can be put off, but booking your travel early could save you serious money. Happy Holiday travel planning.

 Call MSW Travel Group today! 
516-822-6500 

  

Experiential Travel

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Experiential travel is becoming a very popular way to travel. Travelers are seeking out experiences as well as the destination. They want to be immersed in a culture or doing something they’ve never done before. They want to immerse themselves in a new culture, live like locals and learn from them. These experiences and memories are long lasting and sometimes life-changing. Some ideas for experiential travel are:

Adrenaline – Life-changing, heart-pumping, smile stretching adventure travel experiences meant to get you trying new things and our of your comfort zone.
Cooking – Culinary experiences and travel that will nourish foodies with hands-on adventures and behind-the-scene tours.
Health and Fitness – Mind and body travel experiences designed to inspire and motivate you.
Knowledge – Learning is a life-long journey. Make it engaging and memorable with educational travel experiences. A trip that keeps on giving.

Call MSW Travel Group today
to learn more about these amazing trips!
516-822-6500

 

Staying Safe While Traveling

Safety while Traveling

Staying safe while traveling abroad is always top of mind. Most people aren’t dishonest, but those few bad apples or one unfortunate incident can blemish an amazing travel experience. We polled our travel specialists and created a list of tips for staying safe while traveling abroad.

1. Don’t look like a tourist - Many people have a perceived idea of what the quintessential American looks like; white sneakers, big camera, or sweatshirts with university logos. Staying away from these stereotypes when dressing can help travelers avoid drawing attention to themselves. Also, be wary of public displays of wealth – leave flashy jewelry and unnecessary expensive gadgets at home. 

2. Separate money sources - Don’t leave all cash and credit/debit cards together as most do when they are at home. This is a safe guard against unfortunate events like theft – the phrase ‘don’t put all your eggs in one basket’ is very true in this case.

3. Secure wallets and purses - Eliminate opportunities for theft. Make sure purses are closed and zippers are placed towards the front of the body. Never put wallets in back pockets or any other pocket that is easily reachable by others. Money belts are also an option, but what is most important is making money easily accessible to yourself but difficult for others to take without you noticing.

4. Make copies of your important documents - Scanning and printing copies of documents and keeping them in several locations is very simple, but can be crucial if they are lost or stolen. 

5. Purchase travel insurance - There are many benefits to travel insurance but one of the biggest is ensuring medical coverage while abroad. Hospital bills can add up quickly, so purchasing insurance is vital.

6. Don’t leave your belongings unattended in public - This is true everywhere, but especially when abroad in tourist areas. Keep belongings with you at all times; for example don’t place phones and wallets on the table or hook purses on the back of chairs when dining, and never leave luggage outside hotel room doors. 

7. Avoid pulling money out in public - Take out wallets as infrequently as possible, and avoid showing large amounts of cash. This helps reduce the risk of being targeted for any foul play. With this in mind, we would encourage keeping small amounts of currency for minor transactions, bartering and tipping. 

8. Get familiar with the surroundings - A confident stride can make all the difference but not ending up in a bad part of town helps even more. To avoid this, study your map, talk to the front desk clerk, or examine your guidebook before venturing out. If you find yourself in an area that is not familiar or you feel threatened, go into a hotel or restaurant. 

9. Put away your belongings - Most hotels will be fine, but in those terrible incidences where you run across a dishonest person it is best to keep your belongings out of sight. Leave them in your suitcase, put them in the hotel safe, or better yet, leave them at home if you can.

10. Double check - There are many distractions while traveling. We also tend to carry more stuff – look around and double check that you have all your belongings before leaving anywhere.

Article credit to Europe Express. 

For more information, contact Felicia or Donna at 516-822-6500.

 

8 Tips for a Smooth Sailing on Your Next Cruise.

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Here are a few tips for you to use and share with your friends and family. These tips are a good refresher for seasoned cruisers as well as first-time cruisers.  

1. Arrive Early – or even the night before. Avoid frustration and possibly missing your cruise due to travel troubles. Fly the day before and stay at a nearby hotel. Sometimes they offer a free shuttle service.

2. Tip the shore side porters. A good rule of thumb is $2/per bag.

3. Carry on personal items you need immediately. Pack a carry-on bag for important items you can carry with you such as your passport, cruise documents, medication or a bathing suit and change of clothes if you need them before your luggage is delivered to your room. Typically it takes a few hours for the luggage to be delivered to your stateroom.

4. Unpack when you reach your room. This way everything is accessible when you need them and neatly placed in the closets and drawers provided. There is usually plenty of space to do so. Also, you can stow away your luggage so it’s not in the way because space is tight in cruise cabins.

5. Attend the muster drill. Attendance is taken and you are required to do this before the ship sets sail. There is important information given about emergencies and how to respond, where to go, etc.

6. Get acquainted with the layout of the ship. After unpacking grab a map and learn the layout of the ship. Also, an itinerary of the days’ events is delivered daily to your cabin for the following day. This tells you about all the onboard activities and events going on. 

7. Dining Reservations. Check with the front desk or the maître d’ and request a table for 6 or 8. That way you will get to know some people onboard the ship.

8. Rough Seas. Don’t forget to pack some medicine in case the ship hits rough waters. There are several such as Dramamine, Marezine and Phenergan. Be sure to follow the directions on the label.

  

All Inclusive Vacations

Hard Rock Riviera Maya, Mexico

All-inclusive vacations offer guests the opportunity to have their whole vacation paid for in advance. Once you arrive at your destination all you need to do is kick off your shoes and head to the beach.

What’s Included:

All Meals, Snacks and Beverages
Non-Motorized Sports
Daily activities and nightly entertainment
Children and Teen areas
Gratuities

All-Inclusive Destinations:

Bahamas
Dominican Republic
Jamaica
Mexico
Turks & Caicos

The cost of an all-inclusive vacation is more than a regular vacation but you won’t be dipping into your pockets once you arrive at your destination. You can relax and not worry about all the extras you would pay for on a regular vacation. There are resorts in every price range and amenities can vary with each. Buffet style dinners are typical but some resorts are including fine dining options as well. For your next trip, consider trying an all-inclusive resort. We can help you find the right resort for your next vacation. Check out our special offer on the Latest Travel Deals page.

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to plan your next trip. 

 

5 Trends in Oahu Family Travel

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An increase in multigenerational travel means that families are looking for a wider variety of activities

The following are five Oahu travel trends for families visiting the island.

Bonding at the Spa -  Family Spa Outings are a popular activity on Oahu. Tots participate in themed makeovers, teens craft their own Hawaiian body polishes and guests of all ages relax together in the Ohana (family) treatment room

Discovering the North Shore – Rent a car and hit the road. Head to Oahu’s North Shore to slurp shave ice, explore unspoiled beaches, check out the surf town of Haleiwa and see the sacred sites of Waimea Valley.

Eating Like Locals – Sample local eateries. Try one of Oahu’s mom-and-pop cafes, or a local food truck which serve everything from plate lunches to island-sourced shrimp.

Experiencing Island Culture – Hawaiian culture is trending upward. Bishop Museum is becoming a top pick for parents and kids. Visit a Royal Palace like Iolani Palace which is another cultural favorite.

Seeking Out Adventure – Share your recreational passion with your children. There are lots of activities to do on Oahu such as horseback riding, swimming with the dolphins, hiking and kayaking.

This article is credited to travelagentwest.com and is written by Marty Wentzel.

Call MSW Travel Group at 516-822-6500 to inquire about Hawaii and all it has to offer. 

  

Click on the links below to read some of our older Travel Tips:

2014 Travel Tips

 

2013 Travel Tips