Travel tips if you don’t like flying

Not everyone likes to travel by plane.  It might sound at odds with the growing number of destinations you can now get to by air, but if you dread the idea of being on a plane, rest assure you are not alone.

In fact, flying is one of the most common fears people have, and as many as 1 in 5 people in the UK will not travel on a plane because of their fear.

What if You dont Like Flying

Although there are many potential causes for this phobia, one of the most frequently cited is concern for safety.  Statistics don’t provide much comfort in this regard.  There were 138 plane crashes in 2013 and 155 the year before.

But even if you are not worried about air safety, you might avoid air travel anyway for cost reasons or for more comfort.  Let’s face it – having to pay extra to check in bags or change reservations is a pain.  What’s worse is that you might not get much value for your money, especially if you are sat near inconsiderate passengers.

So, let’s look at the advantages of avoiding air travel – for example, you are more likely to have phone reception, which means you can stay in touch with loved ones and have an endless source of entertainment. You’re not totally cut off from the world, like you would be on a plane.  You can also look up local restaurants and attractions from wherever you are.  However, just bear in mind that you may incur hefty charges if you exceed your monthly data allowance from your network provider, or if you are transmitting data outside the UK. A quick tip for low cost internet access is to use a mobile broadband package from a provider like Mobi data.  Click here to apply for Mobi-Data.co.uk’s free sim card. It  can be used in 40 countries across the globe.  As well as offering 100MB of complementary data, Mobi-Data are running a double data deal to reward customers who sign up for a three month contract.

With all that said, how can you plan your holiday, so that you minimise or avoid air travel?  Here are some options you might like to consider:

Cruise ship holidays provide luxury and comfort.  You can explore the ship and take part in quizzes, competitions, games and pool sports as well as other activities whilst on board.   You can see many beautiful countries without jumping on a plane!

Boating holidays are suitable for those who just want to relax.  Not just a popular European pursuit, it is enjoyed in exotic destinations such as India, Laos, Australia, New Zealand and Antarctica. You can often design your own itinerary – unlike on cruise ships, and many people enjoy this type of holiday around the globe.

Eurostar journeys will get you to European destinations quickly and comfortably.  It takes just 2.5 hours to travel from London to Paris. Who needs aeroplanes when you have the eurostar?

Caravan holidays are great for those who wish to travel by land and are not in a hurry.  You can stop as often as you like and explore towns along the way.

Trains and Coaches provide a low cost way to travel around the UK, as long as you don’t have too much luggage with you.  They can be a great way to see the country and you might even choose to travel in first class for added luxury and space.

You don’t need to get on a plane to have a good holiday.  Do some research on the above options and you might just find yourself a plane-free adventure this summer!

 

Spending abroad: What’s the best payment method?

When it comes to spending money abroad, it can be difficult knowing which method is best. So many fees get added onto foreign transactions. By the time you get home you could have a huge bill in fees alone. If you’re looking to save money, it helps to understand the different payment options available.

Spending Money Traveling Abroad

Credit and debit cards: A convenient option?

Credit and debit cards remain one of the most popular payment methods abroad. Safer than carrying cash around, they provide you with instant access to your funds no matter where you are. However, they also tend to come with some pretty high foreign transaction fees. This is particularly true in the case of debit cards.

One way to minimise the fees is to apply for a good overseas credit card. Many companies offer cards that have reasonable foreign transaction fees. In fact, there are even some available that don’t charge anything to access your money abroad. It can be worth shopping around to find these deals as it could save you a lot of money. Just remember to pay off the balance in full to avoid high interest payments.

Pre-paid cards: Avoid getting into debt while you’re away

Credit cards can be great for overseas spending, but they can also be dangerous for your finances. If you don’t trust yourself with a credit card, or if you’re having difficulties getting accepted for one, a pre-paid card could be the ideal solution. There are some great worldwide pre-paid cards that won’t charge you additional fees for using them abroad. They can also help to control your spending if you place a set amount on to last you the whole trip.

Cash: Don’t get stung by high exchange rates

For many people, cash still remains the most popular way to spend abroad. Providing you exchange your money as far in advance as possible, you can save on high exchange rates. Some online companies require you to spend a set amount of money in order to benefit from free delivery. Always read through the terms and conditions regarding fees before you choose an exchange service. It’s recommended you research the different rates available at least a couple of weeks before you travel.

What to do if you run out of money

If you run out of money abroad, don’t panic. There are ways to get your hands on emergency cash. Payday loans could be an ideal option. Companies such as www.wonga.co.za can provide you with cash in your account typically within an hour of getting accepted. Remember that the balance has to be paid off on your next payday if you want to avoid really high interest fees.

It’s easy to save on fees if you do plenty of research and shop around for the best deals. Money.co.uk offers plenty of tips for making the most of each overseas spending method. Remember, if you’re planning on carrying cash around with you; be sure to keep it in a safe place. It can be risky carrying cash around in a foreign country.

Sources:

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/cardsloans/article-1721010/Best-cheapest-ways-spend-abroad.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/10201408/Martin-Lewis-A-peek-inside-my-overseas-wallet.html

Times Are Changing: How the Internet Changed the Financial Industry

A few years ago before writing became my full time career, I spent my days working at a bank on a college campus, doling out money to young adults that couldn’t have balanced a check register to save their lives. The students rarely came to get cash out of their accounts, preferring to swipe their debit cards to their heart’s content and I watched as the students stared in confusion at the deposit slips, wondering how anybody had ever survived without direct deposit.

Finance and Internet

It made me realize that the banking industry was changing pretty fast, and in the few years since I’ve left that banking job I’ve realized that it’s only grown exponentially. The Internet opened up doors to money that were never considered possible and the things we’re able to do now, well, they’re pretty great!

•    Get Your Money Anywhere, Anytime. With everything becoming increasingly digital these days, your money has gone the same way. It was astounding when Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) were first brought to life, making it possible for users to withdraw cash without having to stop by the bank. But the ATMs of today make those machines look like child’s play. Many ATMs allow you to not only withdraw cash, but make transfers between accounts, deposit cash and checks, pay your bills and heck, even buy stamps. Hold times on checks have shortened as banks are able to confirm funds in other accounts at a fraction of the time they used to. You can even apply for loans through online providers like Wonga.com without having to leave your home. Choose the amount of money that you need and after a quick application it gets sent straight to your account. No more do you have to dress up in your Sunday’s best to go talk to a banker – you can do it in your pajamas!

•    Forget Your Wallet. ‘I don’t have cash’ used to be the best excuse in the world. It doesn’t pack quite the same punch anymore, however, now that you can do almost anything online or with your debit card. Many smaller businesses have taken to using mobile credit card processing, allowing them to accept credit and debit cards through a swipe on their iPhone. Visa is accepted nearly universally, offering a safe and secure alternative to carrying wads of money around all day in the back pocket of your trousers.

•    Send Money Anywhere, Anytime. Probably one of the coolest and most convenient thing that the Internet has changed (for everyone, but especially for the financial industry) is connecting people from hundreds of thousands of miles apart. Individuals are far more likely than ever before in history to uproot themselves and move somewhere new, leaving a web of relationships spanning the globe. Before it would have been impossible to send your family money when you find yourself in the States. But electronic money transferring has made that problem irrelevant. Now you can transfer money to just about anywhere you can think of, provided you can pay the fee. Sending a check in the mail is so last century because now you can do it all from the blink of your laptop screen. If you’re wanting to send or receive money, do your research to find out the easiest and most efficient way to do so without breaking the bank.

What does the future hold for those with a bank account? Only time will tell, but it most certainly means big changes for people all around the world.

Saving up for the perfect holiday

Saving up for a holiday is hard enough, but when you’ve got kids to feed, clothe and entertain, putting away a few extra pennies can seem almost impossible.

But don’t despair, by choosing cheap family holidays with the Co-operative Travel and making a few small savings every day, you and your brood could be enjoying sun, sea and relaxation before you know it.

Saving for Holiday Travel

Set some goals

If you all know exactly what you’re all working towards, making a few small sacrifices along the way won’t be as hard, and your kids will understand why they can’t get those brand new trainers or the latest games console.

So before you start tightening that belt, sit down as a family and discuss what you all want from a holiday. Once you’ve decided on a location and a range of activities, work out how much it will cost and how much you’ll need to save to achieve it.

Then try to calculate exactly how much you’ll need to save each week and where those savings can be made.

Get your apron on

For most families, an easy way to save money is to cut down on takeaways, meals out and processed food and go back to good old-fashioned home cooking.

Not only is cooking from scratch a lot cheaper, it’s also a lot healthier so should help you achieve that perfect beach body when your holiday rolls around.

Get the whole family involved

By getting the whole family involved in saving money, you can transform a chore into a fun activity while also educating your kids about budgets, saving and fundraising.

Encourage them to save their pocket money and, if they’re old enough, their earnings from babysitting or car washing for your holiday. That way they’ll have their own money to spend while you’re away and it will feel like you’re all working together for a great result.

Find great deals

The best way to find the perfect holiday at a great price is to head online and sniff out some deals. The web is packed with great money-saving websites, so have a browse and see how much you can save.

With a bit of hard work, determination and perseverance, saving up for that perfect family holiday shouldn’t be too difficult, giving you a great family break and some fantastic memories that you’ll treasure forever.

5 Unique Ways to Re-Energize

After a day (or week) that just wouldn’t end, unwinding may require more elaborate plans than channel surfing or ordering takeout. Looking to relax, but also re-energize? Here are some unusual activities to try out. Make sure your weekend plans leave you with memories and plans to go back out again – and don’t leave you feeling down or tired.

Alternative Art

Just because you couldn’t draw a stick figure, let alone a person, doesn’t mean that you should keep your artistic talent to a minimum. Instead of picking up a set of paintbrushes, consider trying your hand at alternative art methods, like glass blowing. It is not an easy so you’ll need to join a class where you are taught and provided with the necessary equipment. As it requires both strict attention to detail (you are dealing with extremely hot temperatures 2,400 °F/1,320 °C) and creativity, glass blowing can provide a unique opportunity to both relax yourself and get “in the zone” with your mind.

Learn How to Play an Instrument

Whether you can sing like a canary or whether you don’t know the difference between any two music notes, creating your own music can be a life-long hobby full of rewards. Look over old garage sales and on Craigslist to find used instruments, then check out YouTube for full lessons. Community bands, orchestras, and jam sessions help you to meet new people and create a sound that everyone will appreciate (with enough practice, of course).

Mobile Games

When 5:00 hits and you no longer have to worry about getting a call or text from your boss and co-workers, there’s no reason to shut your phone off for the night. After a long day, treat yourself and your phone to some fun by downloading mobile game apps to keep you occupied. Some mobile games like Angry Birds challenge you to think in several dimensions, while others like Enchanted Meadow put you in a calm state of mind to try your luck on a slot machine. Whatever your preference, remember that your phone is meant for fun as well as work.

Family Fun and Video Games

Family Video Games

Each year, more and more game developers have found that there’s much more money to be made by creating video games oriented towards fun family play. The Nintendo Wii U, for instance, is a console meant to be played by kids and parents together, guiding colorful characters across dazzling, beautiful worlds. Many family games involve active movement, such as shaking the controller or even twisting and jumping to a motion capture screen. Get a workout and have a good time all in one.

Bartending Classes

Why go to a bar and pay $10 for a drink when you can learn how to make one in your own home? If you’re the type who enjoys trying new things, and especially new things with alcohol, you can enroll in classes that help you to understand how to mix rum, vodka, whiskey, and gin together in order to make a perfect concoction. Use a bartending course finder in order to find classes near you that help to understand the delicate balance between liquor and mixer. It’s even possible to get certified and work as a bartender professionally if you like the idea of pouring for a living.