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5 Ways to Prepare for your Winter Vacation Now

5 Ways to Prepare for your Winter Vacation Now


If you are thinking about taking a winter vacation, then you should plan ahead to make sure you and your family stay warm, comfortable, and enjoy your trip. Here are simple ways to make sure you do just that.

Turn Down the Thermostat in Your Home

If you’re going to be gone for any length of time, then you may want to turn down the thermostat in your home. Since you won’t be using it, you should do this so that you don’t wind up paying for electricity that you didn’t use.

Make Sure You Wear the Right Shoes

If you and your family plan on spending any time outdoors, then the right pair of shoes or boots is also a crucial item for your vacation wardrobe. Whether you’re skiing, hiking, or simply sightseeing, you want to make sure your feet and ankles have support and warmth. Make sure everyone in your family has a supportive shoe or boot that wraps firmly around their ankle, and has a waterproof coating such as Gore-Tex. This is essential for keeping frost bite and wet socks at bay.

Renting Ski and Outdoor Gear

Leave your ski and outdoor recreation toys at home and rent from a company like Ski Butlers. They have everything you need to make your winter vacation safe, fun and affordable. This will help you pack light and save you headaches when you’re packing. It also helps you save money at their airports as you will have less baggage that you will have to check in.

Make Sure Your Passports and Photo IDs Are All Up to Date

If you and your family are traveling outside the United States, then it is important to make sure all of your family’s documents are up to date. This will help you get through customs quickly, but can also help identify you should something happen to you on the trip.

Take Your Car in For a Checkup

Your car needs to be ready for winter driving, so take it in to your nearest auto body shop and they can do all the legwork for you. They will put snow tires on for you, check your fluid levels, brakes, and shocks. They can even diagnose other important issues before they happen, so that you don’t wind up stuck.

Getting ready for winter traveling is not difficult, it simply takes a bit of forethought. Start planning your winter trip the right way.

Booked Your First Cruise? 5 Things to Remember Before Heading Off to Sea

Your first cruise drums up excitement, but it also puts pressure on you to get all of your affairs in order. With cruises lasting from 3 days to several months, home preparation before you embark is crucial to keep your home and belongings safe. Leaving appliances on or newspapers strew about on a front lawn is cause for trouble.

Your Paperwork

At least a week before your cruise, contact your local post office and hold your mail. You typically pick it up after your vacation or have the postal worker bring it on normal rounds. Leaving mail to accumulate in your box tells potential thieves that you are not home. Newspapers should be cancelled for the cruise’s duration as well. Apply for your passports several months before your trip. Passports take up to 8 weeks to receive in the mail. They must be in your hands as you board the ship or you cannot sail.


The Money Question

Set up any bills that must be paid while you are gone through online payment schedules. You do not want to come home to a darkened house and a late fee. Your checking account should have ample funds to pay the cruise line after your trip. Drinks, souvenirs and outside excursions are usually extras billed to your room number. The bill must be paid in full before you debark. Keeping your checking account full prevents any delays at the terminal.


Turn Off Those Appliances

No appliances should run while you are gone. Electrical shorts and flooding can occur, causing extensive damage. For the best safety, unplug your appliances so they cannot operate. Turn your hot water heater to the vacation mode to save money on heating costs while you are gone.


Ask For Help

Friends and family should visit your home to check on appliances and basic care, especially if you have plants or pets. Visitors to the home deters thieves as they roam streets for potential targets. Making your home busy makes criminals think twice about trying to break in.


When you embark on your cruise, the last thing on your mind should be home care. Sit back and enjoy your trip because proper preparation prevents most problems from occurring.

Siesta Key: The Perfect Romantic Getaway

couple on holiday

Couples seeking an exciting, romantic Florida getaway can look to the beautiful beaches, excellent dining, lively nightlife and rich cultural venues of enchanting Siesta Key. A paradise of silky pure quartz sand, vivid tropical birds, boundless waterfront recreation and year-round sunshine, Siesta Key is the perfect southern escape.

The Beaches  
With its award-winning miles of surf-fringed white sand, the scenic shoreline of this west coast barrier island is ideal for romantic strolls, invigorating runs or a quiet read under an umbrella. Many Siesta Key vacation rentals are close to the island’s world-famous beaches, including the public beach, a life-guarded stretch of sand with a snack bar, showers, picnic area, lighted tennis courts, playground equipment and on-the-sand volleyball courts.

Vacationing couples might prefer Turtle Beach at the southern end where somewhat coarser sand makes for better shell-seeking, and the crowds are sparser. Just south of the public beach, Crescent Beach boasts an excellent scuba and snorkeling spot called Point of Rocks while twosomes seeking a spot of privacy may opt to check out Palmer Point Beach, a secluded stretch running to the north end of upscale Casey Key.

Cultural events and festivals abound in the area, and Siesta Key vacation rentals put couples in the hub of some of Florida’s best ballet, art and theater. Just a short drive from Siesta Key, the historic city of Sarasota is the site of musical venues including the Sarasota Ballet, the Jazz Club of Sarasota and the Florida West Coast Symphony. Theatrical performances range from the dinner theater to big name concert performances. Art galleries, craft shops and chic boutiques flood the streets, and the annual Siesta Key Craft Festival is a fun-filled outdoor showcase of paintings, sculpture and jewelry. Other annual events include Sarasota County Arts Day, the Venice Boat Parade of Lights and the famous Crystal Classic World Championship Sand Sculpting Contest.

The Nightlife
When the balmy Florida evening falls, local nightlife center Siesta Village comes to life where seaside bars and pubs boast a colorful tropical vibe. The ever-popular Daiquiri Deck offers lunch, dinner and entertainment for any age group while The Beach Club features creative cocktails, outdoor seating and dancing. Sunday night brings the Siesta Key Drum Circle, a celebration of percussion, dancing and juggling, all lit up by a festive ceremonial fire. An evening jaunt into Sarasota offers a more cosmopolitan night scene, with plentiful clubs and bars.

With its boundless sunshine, world-famous beaches and romantic island vibe, a vacation rental in Siesta Key is the ideal Florida couples getaway; a little bit of paradise where days bring outdoor fun and evenings are perfect for a slow dance under the stars.

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Jillian Johnson is a professional content marketing writer and blogger with a particular interest in writing about travel. To read more writing by Jillian, follow her @MissWritey.