Why Some People Love Traveling

Many people say that shopping is the reason why they love traveling. Other people say its tasting new foods when they visit a new city. In the larger cities, there are many places to find new foods. Traveling is about learning about a new culture.

The people in Maine are very different from the people in California. Just as the people in Florida are very different from the ones in Minnesota. The buildings, clothing, personalities, and their walk and talk are all distinct according to their region.

The culture of the new place is what makes us want to visit. The learning about the culture by visiting museums and tasting their food. Visiting a new city allows for a visitor to sit on a bench and watch the residents go about their daily routine.

There’s a busy mom toting their children off to school and then running errands to the market. The businessperson in a dashing suit who is standing on the sidewalk trying to hail a cab. There’s another businessperson who is frantically checking and rechecking her notes probably to close a deal downtown.

Every state in this country is unique in its own right. The economy at the moment has been recessing so people are taking advantage of the cheaper ways to travel such as the US charter bus rental services for local places. Instead of canceling holiday plans, many people choose to visit places that are local.

There are many undiscovered places to eat, drink, and learn about culture in our own backyards.

There is a time when people watching is simply not going to be successful. That is when children are involved. Children are not famous for being patient.

This concept applies to everyone, not just Americans. The many different cultures surrounding the other countries in, say, Europe, are interesting to visit. If there is a lack of funds, try going local.

How to Earn Money While Traveling – Seven Ideas to Keep You on the Road

Although it’s quite popular in Europe and Down Under, it’s a dream many Americans don’t pursue: Backpacking the world for months or years at a time. Perhaps it’s because we’ve been taught that you go to school and then get a job so you can buy things. What if we take a break for a while from our fast-paced lives and voracious consumer appetites and live with only what we can carry on our backs?

That’s what my sister and I did. We sold everything, bought airfare, traveler’s checks, and wandered around the world for a year and a half. Of course, we blew through our money faster than we had expected. Wanting to stay on the road for as long as possible, we came up with some ideas on how to make money while traveling.

  1. Submit your photographs to stock photography websites. You’re taking photos anyway of everyone and everything you see. Why not upload them to several of the major stock photography websites and earn money? They pay you on consignment for each photo someone purchases for reuse in books, brochures, websites, etc.
  2. Become a seasonal fruit picker. These jobs don’t pay very well, and it’s hard labor but at least you’re outdoors with other travelers getting in shape and earning money. The jobs are usually plentiful, depending on the season.
  3. Become a ranch hand or do odd jobs. Such jobs are usually found just by word of mouth or calling ranches. Sometimes you can find jobs in a local newspaper, but usually you need to ask around about temporary work in whatever locale you happen to be in.
  4. Teach English. Like fruit picking, these jobs are plentiful but do not pay very well. But sometimes they provide living accommodations and it’s a great way to get to know the local culture and make friends.
  5. Become a freelance travel writer. Write articles and submit them to magazines. If accepted, you will usually be paid per word. You can also write articles and submit them for free to article marketing websites. You’re allowed to put a link in the resource box at the end of the article to your personal website (see #6 below.) This helps drive traffic to your website. These articles spread virally through the Internet and are reprinted in blogs, ezines, and other places.
  6. Design a website with affiliate programs. A great way to stay in touch with friends, family, and new friends you make while traveling is to set up a travelogue website where you display photos and stories about your travels. On such a website, you can get a little entrepreneurial. If you know that most of your friends like to shop at a certain online bookstore, for example, then sign up for that bookstore’s affiliate program. It’s fairly easy to do as long as you have a website building program that allows you to cut and paste an html link. After you sign up for an affiliate program, just cut and paste their affiliate link or banner into your website on a “resources” or “links” page. Then ask all your friends and family to click on that link the next time they wish to purchase something from that online store. You will get paid money each time someone clicks on that link and purchases something, and it won’t cost your friends and family anything extra. There are all kinds of products you can sell on your website. Generally, the more expensive the item – such as seminars, CD programs, or services – the more money you will earn.
  7. Become a WWOOFer. It’s an international program that stands for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. You choose an organic family farm you’d like to visit, make arrangements with the family, work all day, and, in return, you get free meals and lodging for each day you work. It’s a wonderful way to learn about organic farming and the local culture.

The key is to be open and creative. Making the time to step out of your normal life tends to foster creativity and frees the spirit. You are only limited by your work visa and your imagination. Maybe host a brainstorming happy hour at a youth hostel to get some help from your fellow travelers. Other backpackers are a wealth of information. During your travels, remember the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.”

Preventing a Travel Insurance Fraud

Some people are blessed with a lot of time and money in their hands. They get to travel anywhere they like as long as they can. These people are even lucky enough to never experience one bad scenario while travelling. Others, on the other hand, can get unlucky even on their first trip out of the country. Thanks to a travel insurance scam, the aftertaste of their vacation could be a bitter one.

Swindlers will use any method just to extract money and financial information from you. You have to understand that you can still be a victim by purchasing cheap travel insurance from shady and suspicious companies. People who would exploit your situation and trick you really exist. Caution should be exercised whenever you are buying online because it is easy to fall prey for online scams. To prevent falling into an unfortunate situation, such as you being rejected of a claim you thought was valid, read on and get informed.

Research is essential

Finding a company online is easy to do when you are looking for cheap travel insurance companies. Do not, however, believe everything that is written on their website. As a critical customer, you have to practice the art of researching about a company and verifying vital information on their website. Two of the things you have to verify are their legality and their underwriter.

Finding out whether an insurance provider is legal or not can be done through searching for their license and business numbers on their website. Once you have found their license numbers, do some more research by looking them up against a reliable government regulated website or other sites which can verify the existence of an insurance company. It is not enough to find their license numbers because some scam operators can make up this information.

Any insurance company should have an underwriter, which does the tasks of whether or not they should insure an applicant by measuring the risks involved. Some insurance companies may have more than one underwriter that should be financially stable and regulated. Do some background research about an underwriter by finding international insurance rating organizations to check their credibility.

Open your eyes

Sometimes, all you need to do to avoid scams is to keep yourself aware and informed. Reading the policy name, itself, can give you a hint whether it is a scam or not. Familiarize yourself with the difference between a “protection” plan and a “travel insurance” plan because they actually mean two different things. These terms are often vaguely used, causing some confusion and wrong assumptions for people who want to purchase insurance.

Read the fine print in your insurance policy. Read your policy very well and never sign it if you do not understand something. Ask questions regarding the policy to avoid any misunderstanding when claiming in the future. In addition, beware of tricky clauses in your policy. Ask a friend who is knowledgeable about the law to help you understand such clauses.

If you find a travel insurance company online, make sure they have a physical address where you can visit them. People who conduct research and keep an eye open for doubtful information can keep themselves protected from scams. Having a stress-free vacation is achievable as long as you have a reliable insurance company while travelling.

Travel Alert: What You Need to Know About Travel Safety and Security Risk Management

Introduction

If you want to learn about managing the safety and security of your corporate travelers then you will need to read this report.

Specifically we’ll discuss preparation, analysis, management, monitoring and response as it relates to an active and successful travel risk management program.

After reading this article, you should know how to prevent or predict approximately 90% to travel risks and act immediately to improve your own program.

Implementing a successful travel risk management strategy can be one of the easiest corporate actions but the most difficult to get moving.

Too much time is wasted focusing on the wrong areas for assessment and implementation, that results in minor coverage for the major areas of concern.

Here we will simplify the process for immediate action or comparison.

Preparation

Preparation is the primary and key step for all programs, whether mature or developing. Any-and-all information that is collected, especially data, should be consolidated to ensure consistency and accuracy.

Overcoming a “silo” mentally within the organization is also paramount to consolidating.

Intent, progress and resolutions must be communicated to all stakeholders in the most effective medium possible.

Managers should not limit themselves to the more traditional mediums but also include popular social media offerings.

Key messages or content must be trackable or at least acknowledged to ensure potentially life saving information isn’t lost in the vast corporate email inbox or mislabeled as spam.

Each major milestone and change needs to be documented, rated and followed channeled into the communication plan.

Time spent on effective preparation is rarely wasted and will pay dividends, throughout the course of the program’s lifecycle.

Example-Preparation

A relatively small consulting firm, who understood that they had a significant investment in their consulting staff, was able to develop and implement an effective, world class travel risk management strategy in a matter of weeks.

Through a well-structured phase of preparation and mapping they were able to resolve an issue that had consistently been pushed back because they had always assumed the task was insurmountable.

Analysis

Analysis of all key components associated with corporate travel must be conducted.

Travelers

The first and most pivotal is the travelers themselves.

A profile and rating of each traveler needs to be developed.

Questions around health, experience, knowledge, function and even preparation are basic requirements for each travelers threat profile.

With this information managers will be better positioned to make accurate assessments on the overall risk of any journey.

Location

The location visited is the second element.

The threats vary greatly from location to location and generalized ratings are useless if based on such known vulnerabilities.

Trips to a key, developed city warrant different planning considerations than that of a remote location in a developing economic country.

Different cities within the same country may have vastly differing threat concerns too.

Activity

Next is the activity to be undertaken by the traveler.

A conference, factory tour, expedition or client meeting all have differing threats and planning considerations and are not adequately address by a “one-size-fits-all” approach.

Support

Additionally, the level of support afforded the traveler is considered.

This is not only those organic support options such as internal support and providers but that of emergency services, infrastructure and so on.

The time it takes for an ambulance to respond can turn a “routine” incident into a potentially fatal encounter.

The assessment and access to support should be inclusive of routine and emergency situations.

Threats

Lastly, all the known or prevailing threats need to be assessed.

You can never know everything but an overall list and impact/potential outcomes assessment needs to be conducted to complete the process if consistent and measurable results are to be expected.

Many threat factors may be seasonal or vary over the course of the month or traveler’s journey.

Example-Analysis

Due to changing economic challenges, a mid-sized company was pressured to seek new business in developing countries and emerging markets.

Until this point they had always been reluctant to venture into such markets due largely to their perception of risk.

Following structured and less superficial analysis they were able to fully appreciate the actual threats and separate the more emotive elements.

Following consultation with managers and travelers, they successfully expanded their market and sought new business with less competition as their competitors continue to lack the understanding and preparation to successfully pursue potentially lucrative opportunities.

Management

The greatest threat to preparation and analysis is an unsupervised or unmanaged program once the traveler commences travel.

Ownership must be displayed and active management of travelers from a door of departure until a door of return is required.

This must be conducted with frequency of effort and communications to ensure the traveler feels supported and management is across the potential for change and intervention.

This phase is a marathon and not a sprint.

The management of successful programs requires consistency in conjunction with frequency.

Relatively standardized approaches need to be applied to like situations/circumstances for the purpose of efficiency, productivity, safety and cost control.

Demonstrable support is required both within the management group but to all identified stakeholders such as travel management, security, the traveler, families, etc.

Example-Management

A company with tens of thousands of traveling personnel successfully manages the risks and demands of travel with only a handful of people.

Their system and support mechanism is adaptive enough to support individual requirements but automated enough to ensure efficiency by keeping headcount at optimal and minimal levels while leveraging technology.

Their overall strategy is not managed by one department but all departments and stakeholders work in collective unison at each and every stage from departure up to return of the traveler to the office or their place of residence.

Monitoring

Monitoring represents the Achilles’ heel for the majority of travel risk management programs.

Ongoing monitoring of events and activities is required, whether this is carried out by the traveler or higher support function such as HR or security.

Tactical events (those that occur within proximity of the traveler/travelers route) should be scrutinized on a regular basis.

These events are the ones most likely to cause disruption or harm and should constitute the priority of effort.

Wider events or more strategic developments also need to be monitored for change that will impact the traveler or group of travelers.

Tactical events include demonstrations, storms, violence and the like while strategic events include visa changes, political unrest, health crisis and so on.

The actual journey taken by the traveler should be regularly reviewed or automated to report and respond disruption events and threats.

Finally, the individual needs to be monitored outside of the usual performance and reporting requirement to ensure their health and well-being is preserved or unchanged.

Example-Monitoring

Numerous companies have averted crisis and maintained productivity by monitoring developing events.

Changes in weather, strikes, airline delays and even public holidays can occur at short notice and outside of standard policy doctrine.

By keeping “a finger on the pulse” with active monitoring these companies maximize their travel spending and ensure their travelers are highly productive and efficient.

Less vigilant companies who leave the process to static policy and dated knowledge are forced to spend more or suffer unnecessary delays.

Response

Bad things happen to good people all the time.

No plan is complete without a response capacity in support of the affected traveler.

The plan and steps must be painstakingly simple and clear so as to be remembered under the worst of situations.

The plan must be adaptive and simple in implementation so that it can build in complexity and content after the initial activation or call for assistance.

The plan may be infrequently called upon but it should have consistency in application and capability.

All locations, activity, individuals and threats need to be considered and inclusive of the response plan.

Above all, the plan needs to be timely in its application.

A distressed, affected traveler or manager must get the support and collaboration required in the shortest possible time frame.

While the planning and preparation may be measured in days, weeks or months the response should be valued in minutes and hours dependent on the need.

Most companies acknowledge this is not their core competency and therefore part or all of this function is outsourced for maximum return and results.

Example-Response

A “seasoned traveler” from an acclaimed academic institution became unwell while traveling for work purposes.

Despite years of experience and seniority at the institution they had in fact very little knowledge or experience when it came to emergencies or supporting medical services in the location they were when they became ill.

As a result of poor choices, lack of knowledge, no support, limited integration coupled by a litany of local challenges the individual nearly died.

It was only through the swift and successful actions of a concerned spouse, engaging a far more organized process with predictable results, did the individual receive the care and support required to save their life and begin the long recovery process.

Conversely, one company experienced several similar incidents in a single month, however not once were their travelers placed at such grave risk, suffered uncontrolled costs or outright loss of productivity for long periods.

This was all due to a successful and scalable response capacity if and when required.

The Main Travel Safety and Security Threats-Locations and Events

The majority of incidents negatively affecting travelers occur at airports, on the road, accommodation, office/business location, social/leisure locations or result of dynamic change.

Airports

Airports must be included in any action plans or support strategies as it is first/last leg of all journeys and likely to present delays and disruptions ranging from flight delays to targeting by petty criminals.

Accommodation

Accommodation of all kind must be evaluation and included in timely response and advice communications.

Road Moves

Road moves remain the most prevalent and greatest for deadly consequences. Motor vehicle accident rates vary wildly from country to country.

Location

Locations of business activity within the journey plan represent the smallest of impact locations but demand inclusion.

Social and Leisure Activities

Often forgotten with tragic results are social or leisure locations.

This element is likely to be largely unscripted but has a high rate of incidents and events that negatively impact upon the traveler.

Change

The one constant with travel is change.

Elections, violent crimes, attacks an other major news events create change and potential for concern, whether affected directly or not.

Planners and managers need to include this dynamic in the constant monitoring, response and communication plans.

Close

Most agree that travel is inherently risky or laced with threats but far less actually do something about travel risk management as they don’t know where to start or see the task too daunting.

As you can see, it is relatively straightforward to capture 90% of the problem and manage the risk in a few simple steps.

With a methodical and consistent process inclusive of preparation, analysis, management, monitoring and response you too can have a world-class travel risk management program.

Most events and concerns occur in and around airports, accommodation, road moves, office/business locations, change and social leisure locations.

Now you know the key focus areas you have the information and plan to start now.

Even if you already have a plan and strategy, you can benchmark your own approach with this information gathered from years of empirical data, thousands of incidents and insight from thousands of companies ranging from small startup to some of the largest multinationals around the globe.

Travel alert and you truly travel safe.