All The World Wants To Travel To new Zealand

Is it any wonder? Since Hollywood launched New Zealand big time onto the world's cinema screens with epic block busters such as Lord of The Rings, King Kong and The Chronicles of Narnia, everyone wants to visit.  In fact, New Zealand is one of the most popular travel search destinations, with almost two million online searches for information each year, even beating out firm favorites such as Hong Kong and London. 

New Zealand consists of two main islands, North and South about the size of Colorado. With a population of around 4 million and English as the main language, you can expect a warm welcome and a fantastic vacation experience. There is also strong, vibrant Maori culture reflected in the easy going attitude of the people and pride in their heritage. 

From the West Coast of the United States, a direct flight to New Zealand is a bearable 12 hours. Close to the Australian continent, New Zealand shares the Australian love for sport and having a good time. 

Think Hawaii meets Switzerland. 

Where else can you find so many different types of scenery and breathtaking landscapes in one country! From towering mountain peaks and glaciers to volcanoes and bubbling mud springs. And then there's the surprise. It's so very English too. The lush green fields and rolling hills reminiscent of the English countryside and village life never seem that far away. 

Major highlights and attractions. 

The Bay of Islands on the North Island. 

An absolute must-see on your trip. A magnificent natural treasure for anyone who enjoys getting out on the water. Catch a ferry or charter boat and immerse yourself in the unique atmosphere. Paddle a sea kayak in and out of island nooks and inlets. If you have always wanted to swim with dolphins, do it here. Many operators in the region offer excellent trips to spectacular Cape Brett and the 'Hole in the Rock' on Piercy Island. 

The townships of this historical bay are alive with memories of the area's colorful past. Take time out to see the well-preserved relics both Maori and European, in romantic Russell, Paihia, Waitangi or Kerikeri. 

Rotorua. What's bubbling you? 

Known for its amazing geothermal earth forces, this fascinating region offers you more than natural beauty, it's also a very spiritual place. "Manaakitanga" is a deep-rooted concept in Maori culture. It's a local challenge to offer visitors the best experience possible. Voted New Zealand's Most Beautiful City three times, Rotorua's gardens, cobbled streets and diverse mix of Maori and English Tudor architecture, give the city a significant point of difference. Beyond the urban centre, a backdrop of geothermal steam, volcanic mountains and huge crater lakes remind you that this region rests immediately above the Pacific Ring of Fire. 

Incidentally, Rotarua's Hell's Gate Reserve was where the "Black Gate of Morodor" was filmed for The Lord of The Rings Trilogy. Let off some steam. Steam escapes from crevices in the ground, gardens bloom alongside bubbling craters and geysers shoot for the sky. 

Spa therapy. A good wrap. 

160 years after the first Europeans arrived to 'spa' in Rotorua, today's visitors are still enjoying the therapeutic properties of the geothermal resources. Mineral pools, mud wraps and massage will leave you feeling rejuvenated and ready for more. 

The thrill of chilling out in Glacier Country. 

Nowhere in the world's temperate zones are glaciers so accessible. On the West Coast of The South Island, remnants of the ice age cascade from the vast snowfields of the Southern Alps to valley floors, almost 1,000 feet above sea level. 

You can enjoy guided excursions exploring stunning ice formations. Or take off on a scenic flight and land amidst New Zealand's highest peaks overlooking the glaciers. The two most famous villages are Franz Josef and Fox Glacier, good bases from which to plan your days exploring the glaciers. 

Milford Sound. Your eighth wonder of the world? 

Legendary writer Rudyard Kipling was a well traveled man. He called Milford Sound the "eighth wonder of the world." Still down South, Milford Sound lies at the heart of Fiordland National Park, a World Heritage area. Cruising the clear, still waters of the Fiord you'll encounter magnificent sights, such as the awe-inspiring Mitre Peak and Stirling Falls. 

With the highest rainfall in New Zealand (think feet not inches!) so expect rain when you visit. However, when it pours, the water falls that appear all around are simply amazing. 

Keep a lookout for wildlife such as dolphins, penguins and seals often seen in their natural habitat. Go on a scenic cruise and gasp at the moody majesty of the Fiord in your Milford Sound Red Boat. 

Another worthwhile attraction is the Milford Deep Underwater Observatory Option. Descend 30 feet below the surface and marvel at spectacular marine life, with anemones, sponges, fish and rare red and black coral in their natural habitat. 

Discover Middle Earth. 

According to Oscar winner Peter Jackson, New Zealand was the only landscape on the planet that could have provided the sensational locations for Tolkien's Middle Earth. You can set off on your voyage of discovery and visit the key areas featured in the films such as The Southern Alps and Queenstown. Make sure you stop at Matamata, near Hamilton (a couple of hours drive south of Auckland) and marvel at how the landscape was transformed into the peaceful hobbit village of Hobbiton. 

Auckland. The largest city. 

Wellington is actually the capital, but Auckland is where many visitors first set foot in New Zealand. Imagine an urban environment where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking trails and a dozen enchanting holiday islands, that's Auckland. It's located on the North Island and called the City of Sails. Know why? It has more boats per capita than any other city in the world. Almost entirely surrounded by water and covered with volcanic hills, the city boasts a superb harbor and a population of 1.3 million people. Add a background rhythm of Polynesian culture, a passion for outstanding food, wine and shopping - and you'll want to stay. 

Auckland has a pleasant subtropical climate with mild winters (June, July and August) and warm, humid summers (December, January and February). Remember the seasons down here are reversed, so plan your vacation accordingly. 

Accommodation to suit every taste. 

For visitors, Auckland has all types of accommodation. Web sites such as <a href="http://www.hotel.com.au">http://www.hotel.com.au</a> offer a range from backpacker to budget to luxury international hotels. As the North Island attracts more visitors than the South, it pays to check what's out there as you plan your trip. 

Action. Adrenalin. Anticipation. 

Auckland is a top choice if you're interested in wide open spaces and physical activities. Above the ground you can go bungee jumping, parachuting and skydiving. 

On the ground you can go hiking, mountain bike riding, skiing, horse riding, rock climbing, and 'zorbing'. Underground you can go surface caving, cave rafting and hydro sliding; and on the water you can go jet-boarding, white-water sledging, rafting, boogey boarding, canoeing, kayaking, surfing and scuba diving. If there is a difficult and challenging way to get from one point to another you can do it in New Zealand. 

If you're looking for some less exhilarating activities, such as retail therapy, many Auckland stores are open seven days a week. Bars, restaurants and nightclubs welcome patrons well into the night. 

Whether you are stopping for a week, or planning to spend a month exploring everything in The Land of The Long White Cloud, New Zealand will make you feel right at home.

All The Disadvantages Of Being A Travel Nurse

The Disadvantages of Being a Traveling Nurse

As a traveling nurse you will need to be able to adapt to your surroundings quickly. Since s/he will be traveling to new areas and dealing with different jobs on each assignment the traveling nurse accepts this is one very important draw backs to the job if you are not able to adapt quickly.

Since nursing deals a lot with interaction to patients and your co-workers if you are a shy person then meeting new people constantly may also be a drawback. If you take a long time to build a good working interaction with your co-workers becoming a traveling nurse may be a drawback. 

As a traveling nurse you need to be able to adjust to out of the ordinary situations and the unexpected.  If you like and are more comfortable in surroundings that you know and are familiar with then a career as a traveling nurse may not be the wise choice for you as you are constantly changing your surroundings.  When you travel things can go wrong, no mater how much you have planned no matter how much detail you have put into your plans the unexpected will happen. If you are uncomfortable dealing with problems that can arise during travels then you may want to look into a more contemporary nursing job.  If you love the security of home life a traveling nurse moves around a lot and their home is in various parts of the country while they are employed by different assignments.

If you are the type of person who likes to be close to their family and can not deal with being away from their family for long periods of times then you need to be aware that a traveling nurse can be gone for roughly 6 week periods of time to much longer. A typical assignment lasts from 6 weeks on up to 52 weeks.  The one plus to this is that you can choose your assignments and choose the places you are willing to relocate so if you wish to only go a matter of a few hours away or 2 days away the choice is yours to accept an assignment or not. 

Another draw back is that you are on call usually 24 hours a day because you are living on site, or if you are on a cruise ship assignment your services will be rendered as needed.  For people who wish to work a set schedule this can sometimes be upsetting to them mentally and physically. 

There is sometimes even co-worker resentment to deal with. When a co-worker finds out you are a traveling nurse they know you are being paid higher for the same work that they are doing. This sometimes leads to resentment awkward working situations. The best way to deal with situations like this is to be pleasant and helpful and to understand that you are there to do a job. A lot of times it will even have a non traveling nurse look into becoming a traveling nurse. 
Lastly one of biggest drawbacks is dealing with two employers.

The agency you work for and the facility that hired the agency to place a nurse in their employ. Sometimes the provisions in your contract with your agency will conflict with the regulations that the facility is trying to have you work.

ALL Inclusive Travel Planning

If you are really tight on the budget, booking an all-inclusive holiday package can save you  a big chunk of money. Because these all-inclusive package holiday companies have close ties with hotels & popular tourist spots in the country, they can get a better rate than you can! Hence, normally, the discounts & savings will be passed on to you - the all-inclusive holiday customers, tourists & visitors! 

Ever tried to cram all your travel plans into one small budget & short schedule? If you have, you will know the true meaning of a frugal & haphazard holiday. Some people think that all-inclusive holiday packages leave very little space for them to have fun & there is no flexibility. But they're wrong. 
You can save money with an all-inclusive holiday package

All-inclusive vacations are hassle-free

Planning a holiday can give you headaches! When you book an all-inclusive holiday package, you are actually giving yourself the chance to  enjoy the holiday without having to worry about the nitty-gritty details. Your accommodation, food, entertainment & travelling are all taken care of. The only thing that you & your relatives members have to worry about is how much fun you are going to have during the holiday. Some tourists & vacationers like to get an all-inclusive holiday package because there is lack of time. Some people have to contend with last minute plans. The all-inclusive holiday packages can be real life savers in this instance. Even honeymooners love all-inclusive packages because they don't require to have to worry about meals, entertainment, activities, transportation & accommodation when they should be focused on each other!

Mealtime fun with all-inclusive holiday packages

One of the most worrisome things for tourists is WHERE to eat. Because they're not familiar with the country & the booklets that they can get from airports are not very accurate (most of the time), meal times are worrying. When we are visiting another country, they require to try another delicacy, something old..and cheap. Who better to tell you where to find it than an all-inclusive holiday planner? they have all the ropes, hang on to them & enjoy the meal!

You can read all you require from the web or from books on the different cultures & religions in the country that you are visiting.and yet, whenever you are on an all-inclusive holiday package, the tourist guide will STILL tell you things that surprises you! & this is an important point because you don't really require to step on someone's toes when you are in THEIR country.

All-inclusive packages - tells you the cultural differences between races & religions

Besides all of that, with all-inclusive holiday packages, you don't have to worry about where to have fun because they plan everything for you. All-inclusive holiday packages are definitely worth it!

Air Travel: Your Booking Options

Are you looking to take a trip or a vacation that will require you to fly?  If you are, you will need to make your airline reservations soon.  When doing so, you will find that you have a number of different options.  A few of your options, as well as the pros and cons to each, are highlighted below.

One of the easiest ways to book travel arrangements, including airline reservations is to use the internet. When using the internet, many turn to online travel websites.  In fact, online travel websites have increased in popularity over the years.  When using an online travel website to book your airline reservations, you need to enter in the number of travelers, your intended dates of travel, where you will be leaving from, and your destination.  You will then be provided with a list of flights that meet your needs.  All of these flights, which often include different airlines, should be compared.

As previously stated, online travel websites are easy to use.  That is just one of the reasons why they are so popular.  Even inexperienced internet users can buy airline tickets from a travel website with ease.  As for the downside to using an online travel website, many charge you a small fee for using their services; however, this fee, if it is charged, is often added right into the quoted airfare rate.

In keeping with the internet, you can also book your airline reservations online, but directly through an airline.  When doing so, you will need to visit the online website of an airline that you know services your departure and arrival locations.  These websites can easily be found with a standard internet search.  Next, you will need to enter in your intended dates of travel, your starting point, and your destination.  This is similar to what you need to do to use online travel websites.

As for the pros or plus sides to making your airline reservations online, but directly through an airline company, there are a number of them.  The internet makes planning a trip and buying airline tickets easy and convenient.  There are many others who take comfort in knowing that they are buying their tickets directly from the source.  As for the downsides to buying your next set of airline tickets this way, you will find that it can be difficult to compare prices.  In fact, if you want to compare the prices of different airlines, you will need to visit multiple websites to do so.

Another one of your options, when looking to buy airline tickets, involves doing so over the phone.  Most airlines will allow you to make over the phone reservations.  Once you have the phone number needed to place your reservations, it is relatively easy to do.  This option is ideal for those who are concerned with internet security, like individuals who have computers not protected by anti-virus software.  Truthfully, the only downside to this method of booking is the time that you may have to spend on the phone; it can be quite long.

As outlined above, you have a number of different options, when looking to buy tickets for your next trip or vacation.  Regardless of which approach you take, you will likely need to have a credit card or a debit card that can be processed as a credit card.

Air Travel Tips For Families

Are you the parent of an infant, toddler, or preschooler?  If you are, are you also in the process of planning a trip that requires air travel?  If you are, you may be dreading your upcoming flight.  After all, complications are all that many parents can think of.  With that said, there are a number of ways that you can make flying with your young children not only easy, but fun as well.

For children under two years of age, you will first want to examine the pros and cons of getting them their own seat.  Many airlines allow children under two to sit on the lap of an adult.  Getting an extra seat for a child under two will cost money, but you may be able to get a small discount when contacting the airline in question.  On the other hand, you will be able to have your own seat, which will be nice.  Most car seats can fit into airline seats.  Speaking of which, if you need to bring a car seat or a stroller, it will need to be scanned by airport security.

As for strollers, they are a good idea, even for children who can walk.  Most parents of toddlers are urged to give them a close look.  Most airlines will require you to handover your stroller before boarding a plane.  Once you arrive at your destination, your stroller should be waiting for you at the gate.  Using a stroller makes it easy for you to move around the airport and quickly.  This is ideal if you must hurry, like if you have short layovers.

Also, be sure to bring some formula, juice, and snacks for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.  Although you will find some restrictions, most airport security officers will allow a child’s drink to pass through, as long as it is a small quantity only.  As for older children, like toddlers and preschoolers, you should be able to buy juice, water, and snacks at an airport store past security checkpoints.  Doing so is nice, as they are no security concerns about doing so.

It is also important to bring a bag for your child.  This bag should be filled with items that interest them.  Depending on the age of your child, great items include books, stickers, coloring books and few crayons, small toys, and flash cards.  These items will have to be scanned through airport security, so try to leave anything, namely toys, at home that may cause complications or delays.

Speaking of airport security, it is important to talk about the screening process and prepare your child for it.  For many toddlers and preschoolers, the whole ordeal can seem a little bit overwhelming and scary.  Your child will likely have to walk through the metal detectors themselves.  If you are traveling with another adult, have one go through first, so that your child can walk towards a familiar face.  You may even want to arrive at the airport early.  This gives and your child the opportunity to watch others go through the screening process first.

As for the flight itself, toddlers and preschoolers may love having a window seat.  If someone in your traveling party is assigned a window seat, try to let your toddler or preschool sit there instead.  As for the bag full of goodies you brought, refrain from giving everything to your child all at once.  This is likely to reduce boredom.  For children who may have their own seats, portable DVD players and laptop computers are advised.  They are a great way to keep a fussy child occupied.  If using a laptop computer, be sure not to choose a movie that will exceed the laptop’s battery life, as this may result in a very unhappy child.

The above mentioned tips are just a few of the many that can help you, as a parent, when traveling by air with young children.  For addition tips, just use your best judgment.  As a parent, you should know what will help to keep your child interested and happy.

AIr Travel: Is IT Right For You?

Are you interested in taking a vacation?  If you are, you may be required to fly.  There are many popular vacation destinations, such as Hawaii, Europe, and the Caribbean, that cannot be reached any other way.  With that in mind, if you are looking to vacation within in the United States you may have more options.  For that reason, you may want to first decide if traveling by airplane is really right for you.

When it comes to determining if air travel is really right for you, for your next trip, you will first want to look at your destination.  Just because you do not have any oceans to cross, it does not mean that you don’t need to fly.  For example, if you are looking to travel from New York to California, it may be within your best interest to fly.  This is particularly true if you are limited on the amount of vacation time that you have available from your work.  

Your budget is another factor that you will want to take into consideration, when trying to determine if air travel is right for you.  For example, there are many other cheaper alternatives for those who must travel a short to medium distance.  For example, if you will be traveling from Texas to Nevada, you may be able to buy tickets for a bus or train.  There are many different options when you look for them.  For many individuals, riding a bus or a train is a much more affordable option.  Perhaps, the only downside to this approach is the time that you will spend on the road.  For many, it would just be convenient to drive their own car.

Speaking of driving your own car, if you are looking to avoid flying, you will want to examine your alternative option of driving yourself.  As previously stated, keep your location and distance in mind.  Also, it is important to take the cost of your trip into consideration.  Many of us automatically think of gasoline and the cost of it, but it is also important to take the cost of vehicle wear and tear into consideration.  For that reason, many end up renting a car for their trip.  However, it is important to return back to traveling by air.  For long distance trips, the cost of renting a car can be the same, if not more than hopping on a flight that only lasts a few hours

What does all of this mean for you?  It does mean that you will likely be better off traveling by airplane if you are looking to travel in the United States.  With that said, there are some exceptions to this rule.  For example, you should never fly if you can drive to your destination in an hour or two, as doing so can be considered a waste of money.  Also, if you are a motor home owner or if you can find an affordable rental nearby, you may want to drive to your destination instead, as doing so can sometimes be better than flying.

For the most part, the only individuals who should have trouble flying are those who suffer from claustrophobia or a fear of flying, even flying is safe.  Individuals with other disabilities, including the need of an oxygen tank or those who are wheel chair bound, can still fly to their destination, as many airlines will go out of their way to provide needed accommodations and services.

Air Travel And Pets

Do you have to travel by air in the near future?  If you do, are you a pet owner who needs to bring your pet along with you?  Although most of us leave our pets at home, you may not want to do so or your purpose for travel may be to move, as opposed to taking a fun filled vacation.  Regardless of your reasons for wanting or needing to travel with your pet or pets, there are a number of important points that you will need to keep in mind.

The first step in traveling with a pet is to make sure that you can do so.  Although a good number of airlines will allow pets on their planes, not all will. You may be in a predicament if you plan to depart from a small airport with only one or two airlines.  If they do not accept pets or if their rules and restrictions are too much for you to handle, you will want to examine other nearby airports, especially those that are larger in size.

When traveling by air with your pet or pets, it is important to remember that you will be charged an additional fee.  Unfortunately, many first time pet travelers believe that they can use their pets and their pet carriers to count towards as a carry-on bag or a checked bag.  This isn’t how it works though.  You will, almost always, be charged an extra fee for traveling with a pet.  This extra fee will likely depend on the airline in question and well as your pet’s location, such as in the cabin or in the baggage compartment.  

That leads to another important point.  Even with some of the airlines that allow pets, like cats and dogs, aboard their flights, not all allow pets to be in the cabin with other passengers.  This is particularly common on small planes where allergies may be a big concern.  If you cannot part with your pet, be sure to search for an airline that will allow you to keep him or her in the cabin with you.  With that said, remember that the size of your pet will also play a huge factor in your options.

Regardless of where your pet is stored for the plane ride, you will need to have a pet carrier or crate for them.  Many airlines have specific rules and restrictions on what type can be used.  Resections often include materials used, as well as size.  Most will provide you with that information when asked.  Speaking of pet crates and carriers, it is important to make sure that you give your pet enough room to stand and move around a little bit.  In fact, most airlines will refuse to transport pets that they feel are unsafe from small pet crates and carriers.

It is also important to make sure that you get your pet checked by their vet.  You will want to make sure that your pet has all required vaccinations and that they are fit for travel.  Also, all airlines require that you receive a health certificate, which will state that your pet is healthy and safe for travel.  

The above mentioned points are just a few of the many that you will want to take into consideration when traveling with a pet.  Added tips include booking direct flights, making sure your pet’s collar is marked with the proper identification, as well as their pet carrier.

Air Purifiers And Air Filters For Travelers: Are They Worth The Money?

Do you do a lot of traveling?  If you do, you may be concerned about the air that you are breathing inside your hotel room.  This may especially be the case if you suffer from asthma or allergies.  If you do, you may be curious about air purifiers and air filters that are designed for travelers.  As nice as a concept as they do sound, you may be curious as to whether or not they work or if they are worth the money.

When it comes to determining if travel sized air purifiers are worth the money, you will find that it depends.  With that said, typically, most are encouraged to save their money.  For more information on why, please continue reading on.

When examining air purifiers, especially those that are considered high end home air purifiers, you will find that most are relatively large in size.  Although air purifiers and filters are becoming more compact, you will find that most are still a decent size.  For example, tower shaped air purifiers are thin, but they are still somewhat small. Desktop air purifiers are the same way, unless flat, so they do still take up a considerable amount of space. On the other hand, travel size air purifiers are extremely small in size.  This impacts the size filter that can be used.  Smaller filters can easily become clogged or not capture all particles in the air.

Despite the fact that air purifiers are on average a decent size, that hasn’t stopped some companies from selling small travel sized purifiers.  As for what you will find, it will vary.  For example, some are much smaller versions of desktop air purifiers that are lightweight and easy to transport.  Also, did you know that you can actually wear some travel sized air purifiers like a necklace?  You can, as there are some versions available for sale.

As for travel sized air purifiers that can be worn like a necklace, it does should like a pretty neat idea, although some say that there are dangers associated with certain brands, especially when they are worn too close.  You can see this by reading reviews of these necklace-like air purifiers online.  There are cases where some consumers felt ill after wearing them for extend periods of time.  This is something that should cause you to be concerned.

Smaller, travel sized air purifiers that resemble desktop air purifiers are nice, but most cannot be considered high end.  Typically, it depends on the brand and whether or not HEPA air filters are used.  In all honesty, if you truly need to have cleaner air, it may be best to bring a high end compact air purifier from home with you.  Of course, be cautious when doing so; be sure to pack well.  Since high end home air purifiers are expensive, you will not want damage yours.

A great alternative to investing in travel sized air purifiers that may not work is by carefully choosing your hotel.  First, ask if air purifiers are used in the hotel rooms.  Some hotels do now use them, especially after being wished for by guest.  If you cannot find a hotel that uses an air purifier, be sure to choose a room where pets and smoking are not allowed, as this often means that the room’s air is much more cleaner.

Agent Tricks OF The Travel Trade

Iíll be forthright: Iím not a homemaker. I feel more at ease constantly on the move, city after city, mountaintop to seaside surf, living out of my suitcase and fumbling through a foreign language phrase book, than I feel even comfy and cozy, napping on my couch on a Sunday afternoon. Perhaps Iím a little crazy, but I find it thrilling sprinting to make a connecting flight (even if itís the red eye); I believe it convenient when the airline informs me my luggage is a flight behind, leaving unencumbered to begin sightseeing immediately; and I think myself resourceful when I arrive at a booked hotel only to realize I forgot to make reservations but still haggle a room. Of course, while I donít mind any of the perceived headaches of traveling, I do mind the high costs often associated with it. Traveling, for me, is primarily about escapingówhether it be work, commuting, obligations, sometimes even family and friendsóbut how is it an escape if Iím worried about how much Iím spending the entire trip?

I mention cost as something that would potentially worry me were it not for the fact that, in reality, it doesnít worry me at all. At least not since I wised up, did the requisite research and taught myself the agent tricks of the travel trade. Travel agentsí tricks that is, because in addition to being a constant traveler and writer, I am also a licensed travel agent.  Not in the sense that I work for others, booking their hotels, finding their flights, or landing them a deal on an Alaskan cruise. Truth is, I only use my license for personal escapes (well, okay, occasionally for family and friends too, but only when their remarks regarding my debonair good lucks are particularly flattering). 

If youíve never heard of this travel industry loophole before, this may sound somewhat (or completely) preposterous. In fact, however, it is quite common among everyday people, both those who travel often or but once a year, both those whose work relates to travel to those whose work relates only to that which remains stationary. What I mean, plain and simple, is anyoneóyou, me, your second cousin Otto, or my next-door neighbor Ireneócan get their travel agentís license lickety-split, and immediately begin reaping the benefits.

First things first: when making travel arrangements for themselves, every agent knows not to book a single step of their journey through one of their own, i.e. other travel agents. Instead, they use travel consolidators. 

Think about the difference those terms: agent and consolidator. 

An agent, in any industry where theyíre principal players, obviously gets something in return for the services they provide. In sports, agents represent athletes, working off the field to win their clients lucrative contracts and commercial cameos so the athlete can in turn, without financial distractions, concentrate and win on the field. For these services, agents win themselves a percentage of every deal they broker.  The same is true in showbiz, modeling, or corporations where headhunters wheel and deal multi-million dollar salaries and stock incentive plans for their CEO clients. Likewise, then, in the travel industry, agents receive discounts, courtesies and other special benefits, not from the customer for whom they book a hotel or flight, but from the vendor providing that service (i.e. the hotel chain or airline) who profits from the customer. As agents for airlines, etc., they drive customers toward vendors whom offer them the most in return. 

A consolidator, on the other hand, does virtually the opposite. Rather than inflate the costs of travel by collecting fees, they combine, for the sake of efficiency, the expensive and unstable parts of travel into a cheaper, more solid whole. They work to maximize vendorís numbers, ratios and the cost per head. Think about it in terms of magazine publishing: the real cost in printing an issue is not the number of copies made, but merely arranging and setting the plates that will allow the print run in the first place. Once that is set to go, the only added costs are that of extra paper and ink. The travel industry is the same, the more spaces that fill, the cheaper tickets or rooms become per person. As in any industry, consumers (i.e. travelers in this case) benefit from the sheer volume of numbers (i.e. all travelers, yourself included). 

You, as a licensed travel agent would obtain special contact with these consolidators and the deals vendors must offer to maximize their costs per person. But while itís all well and good to make arrangements through a consolidator as opposed to an agent, just because you acquire a license (available online in under an hour) doesnít mean the consolidator will believe youíre as much a travel professional as they are. To avoid common mistakes that expose amateurs from pros, you must learn the proper lingo and travel codes. For that there are volumes of eBooks (with corresponding printed versions) that provide the requisite knowledge, which you can quickly study before contacting a consolidator and easily flip through if put on the spot. Get these references. Some of them are thick, but in reality youíll spend less than a hundred dollars on everything you need to in turn potentially save thousands on the first trip you plan with your travel agentís license in hand. 

Furthermore, instead of turning to the discount fare finders like Orbitz, Expedia, Travelocity or Priceline that lay-travelers search, as a travel agent, you additionally gain access to the lesser known, but more lucrative sites travel consolidators utilize.

Together, the benefits will materialize almost immediately. Buy plane tickets the day before the flightís scheduled to depart, but only pay what you would have had you purchased tickets two months in advance. Get a spacious cruise ship cabin beside the captainís quarters for the price of an ocean-level closet. Find yourself lodging in the seaside, honeymoon suite for the price you might have paid for the basement hide-a-bed beside the ice machine. 

Finally, the travel industry is a weird and wonderful creature, in this case, thankfully profit driven as much as other industries we often loathe. To those who present themselves as viable agents, promoting and thus earning money for the industry as a whole, it means endless perks. I get more special offers from airlines, cruise lines, and packaged tour companies than I know what to do with. For me, casinos, theme parks, and luxury resorts are not necessarily what I strive for, but if that is your cup of tea and your hocus pocus agenting appears legitimate, youíll suddenly find yourself choosing between the best of many worlds: free weekends in the Napa Valley, first class seats to Tokyo, an all expense paid safari, a cruise down the Nile... 

So what are you waiting for, get started! Find a comprehensive eBook or alternate guide that takes you through the process of becoming a travel agent, step-by-step. Donít sit on this opportunity, but rather start traveling cheaply, todayÖ 

As for me, Iíve got a flight to catchÖ 

Now, where did I put my passport?

Copyright 2006, Robert K. Blanc. All Rights Reserved. Reprint or reposting of this article permitted only in its entirety with the below resource box included and unchanged.

Advice For THose Traveling Overseas

While traveling abroad can be a rather exciting and pleasurable experience, it can also be potentially dangerous. Not to discourage one from traveling overseas and seeing the world but there are numerous things that one should keep in mind when taking a trip to a foreign country so as to avoid potentially hazardous situations. Obviously having a valid passport is a must and one should be sure to fill out the necessary emergency information in that section of their passport, supposing some unanticipated misfortune happens to arise.

One would not want to visit a foreign country knowing absolutely nothing or next to nothing about the place. Thus becoming familiar with the area you plan to visit is important. One should pay particular attention to the laws and customs of the country as they are very likely to be different from those of your home country. Since your luggage has virtually everything you require for your visit contained therein it is essential that you never leave it unattended. Furthermore accepting packages from strangers is certainly taboo. One can never be too sure when it comes to accepting packages from strangers, even in their home country.

Many of the locals in a foreign country can easily identify a foreigner and as such you may be a target for crime. In order to avoid being heavily targeted, do not wear any striking clothing or expensive jewelry that may bring unwanted attention upon you. It is also suggested that you not carry any unnecessary credit cards or surplus money with you. There are people out there who can easily and deftly steal from you without you even being aware of the fact and as such you should at least limit the amount they steal from you. First and foremost though, you should be respectful of the people there and the culture in which you are present.