Ethical Travel Tips for the Summer Season

Ethical Travel Tips for the Summer Season

Ethical travel tips for summer

Summer is in full swing and it’s time to head off to new and exciting locations for new experiences, but it’s also important to put on your ethical hat and research the region so you support the area in the right way and don’t step on any toes. In this article we dive into the best ethical practices for heading off to a tourist destination this summer. 

Respect local culture 

When you head off on vacation there is a certain feeling of freedom and abandonment. You cast off the responsibilities of your life for a short period and jet off with the intention to have a fun time and to make new and lasting memories. But this can pose some issues in certain places. 

You might think it’s okay to snap some picture of an orthodox Christian Church in Moscow or Wear your shoes in the Buddhist temple in Japan, but these actions will seriously offend the people there – as will rude or lewd behaviour. 

Wherever you choose to travel, research the area and the customs first and take steps so you and your group don’t offend anyone accidently. There may be a stereotypical tourist from your part of the world but you don’t have to conform to it. 

Enjoy local culture 

Broadly, there are two types of travelers. There is the kind that love to live the tourist lifestyle, they love to sit by the pool and sip cocktails or spend their money in the local nightclubs. Then there are others who love to engage with the local culture. 

Both types of tourist are fine but if you want to travel ethically you need to be away from the impact you have on the local areas and people living there. If you’re a regular beach goer, for instance, remember to take all your waste away. Culture vultures should always respect the places they visit. 

Often local people both like and loath tourism. Tourism brings in money and supports the local economy, but it also harms the local environment and creates urban centers crowded with strangers. Remember you are visiting a place where people live. 

Bargain respectfully 

Some places you travel to, especially places in Asia, will have markets where you can Bargain with local sellers. This is a fun part of the tourist experience and you can get authentic items at reduced prices, but you need to remember to bargain ethically. 

If you go to a market chances are the sellers will expect you to Bargain with them since most people do. Because of this their prices will be a little higher than normal and they will expect you to haggle them down. If you want to be ethical about it you will go for the fairest prices for the item, not the cheapest. 

Remember that people in these countries operate on different economic scales. Your money is probably worth more than there is, which makes a difference when bargaining. The good news is you should be able to settle on a price that benefits you both. 

Spend locally 

When you travel to a new city or country it’s easy to shop in familiar department stores and restaurants with brand names you recognize. The advantage of globalization is that you have a familiar standard wherever you go. The trouble is that spending here doesn’t benefit the local economy. 

When you eat in big brand restaurants that you know from home the money goes to a multinational corporation instead of the local area you are visiting. This means that your tourist money doesn’t have the effect it should and doesn’t support the local community. 

There are further benefits to choosing local places to eat and shop in. You not only get to meet the friendly locals but you get to try new foods that you might not have heard of before. Isn’t that what you travel for anyway? 

Support ethical businesses 

These days there is a big movement towards ethical lifestyle practices and businesses. You will see this more and more when you travel as well. Many hotels and hostels now have carbon reduction badges to show customers that they adhere to the best practices to reduce the effects of climate change. 

If you want to be an ethical traveler this summer you need to research the most ethical places to stay at your destination. If you are staying at a large hotel find one that supports ethical practices like reducing carbon and support for local communities. 

Another way you can support businesses ethically is by choosing the local hostels and hotels to stay in, learn more about La Posada. When you stay in a local b and b for instance, you know that your money goes to the right place and supports the local economy. 

Respect dress codes 

As with respecting local customs and practices, it’s also important to respect the local dress codes, especially when you go to visit religious sites in countries like Japan, Thailand, Russia, and Cambodia. This applies to the clothes you wear and how your cover-up. 

In some orthodox countries you might not be allowed to show your midriff or any tattoos, other countries might require you to take off shoes or wear clothes that cover your legs and arms. It will be extremely rude and possibly illegal in some places if you don’t adhere to these rules. 

To be an ethical tourist you need to research the culture of the wraps you are traveling to and find out about the dress codes. You can try to buy suitable clothing for your trip before you travel or wait until you arrive at the destination where the right clothing is available. 

Engage with culture 

Too many tourists travel without engaging with the local culture and language. This is not only rude but it leaves you with a less rewarding experience of the place you want to explore and discover. It’s a better ethical practice to engage with the local culture. 

You probably won’t be able to learn much of the language before you go and since you will only spend a week or two in a place you probably won’t need to learn it either, but taking a phrasebook with you and having a go shows the locals that you respect their country and culture. 

This practice comes with many benefits. Firstly you get to try out your language skills in a real-world setting which is a rewarding and progressive experience, but you also get to engage with the local people which is fun, friendly, and surprising. 

Leave no trace 

Whether you are staying at a luxury resort like La Posada, camping, hiking, or traveling through, you must show respect and leave no trace that you were ever there. Too many tourists are responsible for leaving waste around that looks unsightly and damages the environment. 

Tourist waste is one of the reasons local people don’t like tourism despite the money it generates. Tourist waste tarnished the beauty of a unique destination and shows disrespect to the local area and people. But a leave no trace attitude is a good thing to have. 

With a leave no trace attitude you will always be aware of the waste you will generate on a trip to the beach or the countryside. Always thinking about what you will do with your waste is a good starting point when planning your tourist excursion. 

Be a nice person 

When you head off on your vacation you tend to let your inhibitions go which can result in negativity sometimes. You might find yourself judging or criticizing a new place because it’s different from what you expected or because you find yourself in an unusual sort of mood. 

This is something to be aware of when traveling to new places, you don’t have to abandon your critical faculties altogether but if you have something negative to communicate try to do it discreetly so you don’t offend any of the locals. There’s nothing worse than loud and obnoxious foreign tourists. 

Also, remember to treat the people you meet with kindness and respect. Whether it is the teller at your hotel or the local tuk-tuk driver, remember they are not on holiday like you and are working hard for their families and local communities. 

Reduce carbon footprint

The planet is getting warmer every year, the ice caps in the North and South are melting and our sea levels are rising. This effect is set to displace millions of people and precipitate unusual and catastrophic changes to global weather patterns. It’s easy to forget this is happening when you jet off on your holiday. 

Awareness of these climatic changes doesn’t mean you have to abandon your plans to go on vacation abroad but it’s worth keeping in mind at every opportunity. You might think that one person can’t make any difference and small changes to individual attitudes can have a collective impact. 

If you fly, consider taking the train instead or offset your carbon by investing in a charity or switching to a vegan diet. When you arrive at your destination why not cycle around instead of taking cabs, this way you get to see more of the local area as well.

How to get the most from the 4d toto results Singapore pool today

How to get the most from the 4d toto results Singapore pool today

4d toto pools such as 4dinsingapore are quite valuable for anyone who wants to win consistently. However, like every other tech platform out there, utility is driven by your prowess in use. The better one is at using the platform, the better the chances of winning in 4d toto. Luckily, getting to learn how to use such a platform is not rocket science. A few simple tricks can help you make the most of 4d Singapore pools in a very short time. To make the process easier for you here is how to get the most from the 4d toto results Singapore pool today.

  1. Make use of pool tutorials

Every Singapore 4d toto pool has a tutorial on how to use it.  The tutorials and usually in both text and video. Make sure to go through them closely and learn all the pool loops you want to use. The tutorial may be long and boring, but do not overlook any part of it. You will be surprised at how powerful a supposedly simple tool like a 4d toto results pool can be. Besides, the tutorials can help you figure out new hacks that can help you make the most of the platform at any given time. This can push up your win rate and make playing 4d toto even more fun.

  1.   Make use of YouTube tutorials

You are probably not a big fan of pool tutorials.  Most people are not a fan of them anyway, as they tend to be long and tedious. Luckily, they are not the only source of information. The internet, and especially YouTube, can be a huge source of information on this issue. For instance, when it comes to 4dinsingapore, there are tons of YouTube videos on using it when playing toto. Make use of this information and enhance your chances of making the most of 4d toto. The best thing about YouTube is that you have variety. You have the option to choose a YouTuber that best fits your style, and learn as much as you can.

  1.   Take advantage of free trials

Like most online platforms, Singapore 4d toto pools have a free trial. Make use of the free trial and determine if the platform you intend to use is the best one. The beauty of a free trial is that you can use multiple platforms at a go. Try many of them out and go for one that has the best odds of winning. For instance, if you use the 4dinsingapore free trial, you will realize that it is quite a solid platform. Once you master how to use it, you can make quite a good amount of playing 4d toto.

  1.   Have a friend help you out

If you know a friend who knows how to use 4d toto pools, have them help you out. Watch them navigate the pool until you master how to use the pool too.  The best thing about engaging a friend is that you have the option to ask questions. This allows you to master the pool even faster.

How to get the most from the 4d toto results Singapore pool today

If you use any of the above techniques, using a Singapore 4d toto pool becomes very easy. Not only will you improve your odds of winning, playing will be fun too.

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Preparing For The Travel Of A Lifetime

Preparing For The Travel Of A Lifetime

If you are thinking about going on some kind of long trip abroad, there are a lot of things that you generally need to do in order to really get ready for it. No matter how much or how little you might have traveled in the past, being prepared is going to be a vital part of the process, and the longer you are going away for, the more there is to prepare in general. In this post, we are going to take a look at a number of the most important things that you need to prepare before you go on the trip of a lifetime. You might be surprised at how many of these there are, and how important they really are.

Start Early

One of the major rules of thumb that are worth considering is that you need to start as early as you possibly can. The earlier you start, the more likely it is that you are going to be able to get everything planned right, so this is really something to bear in mind. If you are struggling to get started, perhaps because you are not quite sure where to begin, then you should simply start with the first thing that comes to mind. It doesn’t matter where you start as long as you do so, and the sooner you do it, the more likely it is that you are going to really be able to prepare for the trip as well as possible.

Drawing Up An Itinerary

You need to make sure that you have some kind of itinerary at the end of your planning, so that you know what you are going to do and when. This can either be rough or it can be very detailed indeed – either are fine, it’s just about making sure that you do it in a way which is comfortable for you, as some people prefer one way and other people prefer the other way. In any case, be sure to draw up your itinerary in whatever level of detail you want before you go away, and to ensure that you are continually adding to it and updating it as your plans evolve – which they will inevitably do. This is the sensible way to approach making plans for travel, as you can be sure that things are liable to change from time to time, no matter what.

Prep The Home & Family

As much as thinking about what you are going to do on the trip and all that this entails, you also need to make sure that you are prepping the home and the family too, including both those who are going with you and those who might be staying at home. If you have elderly relatives who are staying at home, for instance, make sure that they are being looked after, whether that means calling in other people for help or making use of a senior meals program to ensure they are fed. This is going to be hugely important before you go away.

Likewise, you should ensure that the home is going to be ready to be left for a while. This is less important if someone is staying there, but if they are not you should make sure that the home is ready. That means keeping it safe and secure, perhaps using a timer to make it look as if someone is home at certain hours of the day to deter burglary and break ins. This is essential if you are going to ensure you are not worrying the whole time while you are travelling.

Finances

Of course, a trip of a lifetime is not going to be a cheap endeavor, and you need to make sure that you are planning for the financial side of things too. How you do that all depends on what your personal situation is, but you can be sure that it is vital to plan out how much it is going to cost, with a reasonable upper limit assumption on that. That way, you are much less likely to get yourself into trouble, and you should find that you are able to afford the whole trip without having to worry too much.

If you can keep on top of all of these things, you are going to find that the trip of a lifetime is much easier to plan and to make come true. There are few things more rewarding than travel, so this is really important to think about.

Virtual Tour of 5 Haunted Castles & Mansions

Virtual Tour of 5 Haunted Castles & Mansions

Ancient castles complete with turrets, keeps, moats, and of course a resident ghost or two are steeped in history, myths, and folklore.  It’s no wonder the mere mention of castles sets everyone’s imagination on fire and causes the hairs on the back of our necks to stand up.  Every self respecting castle in the world boasts a ghost, ghoul, or demon; and if they don’t they should!

The world certainly has no shortage of haunted castles and mansions.  Many of them are made famous by their other worldly residents who are busy perpetrating paranormal activities on hapless visitors and avid paranormal investigators.  So whether you’re a paranormal investigator or just someone who enjoys getting scared out of your wits there’s a haunted castle out there waiting for you to explore.

Of course actually visiting a haunted castle or mansion may not be feasible these days when travel has become difficult and quite restrictive.  But remember you can always visit them virtually from the safety of home and the comfort of your couch.

To get  you started on your virtual journey here are 5 virtual tours of some of the most famous castles and mansions in the world.  They are by no means the only famous haunted castles, but they’ll whet your appetite for more!

Dracula’s Castle

Nestled in the hills of Romania on the border between Transylvania and Wallachia is Bran Castle.  Popularly called Dracula’s Castle because it’s one of the castles in the area that are loosely linked to the Bram Stoker’s horror classic called Dracula.

There’s no evidence that Stoker had this castle in mind as the setting for his novel. But the castle is loosely associated with Vlad the Impaler of Wallachia whom it is believed was the inspiration to Stoker’s undead character.  Despite this tenuous connection the castle is still widely known as Dracula’s Castle and visitors may still expect it to be haunted by something.  And why not the castle is ancient!  Built in sometime in the 13th. or 14th. century the castle surely has a resident spectre or two!

Edinburgh Castle

Built in the 9th. Century this Scottish fortress has seen many bloody battles.  It’s dark dank dungeons was where horrific acts of torture were perpetrated on countless people.  It’s no wonder that this ancient historic castle is said to be one of Britain’s most haunted.  And believe me Britain has no dearth of haunted castles!

By the way this castle is located on a hilltop above the town of Edinburgh, said to be the most haunted town on eairth!

Winchester House

Located in San Jose, California Winchester House was once home to Sarah Winchester the widow of the firearms magnate William Wirt Winchester.

Overwhelmed with grief from the death of her husband and child Sarah Winchester is believed to have built this huge mansion compete with 160 rooms, 47 stairways and fireplaces, 6 kitchens, and more, to appease the spirits that had fallen to the famous Winchester rifle.

Surely a house this creepy is haunted by several unhappy spirits!

Villa de Vecchi

Located in the town of Cortenova in the mountains of Northern Italy this now abandoned villa is said to be one of the most haunted houses of Italy.

It was built for Count Felice de Vecchi between 1854 and 1857.  It is said to be the scene of several murders and suicides including the horrific deaths of the count’s wife and daughter.

 

Versailles

France’s most popular chateau Versailles is said to be haunted by none other than King Louis the XVI and his wife Marie Antoinette.

It’s no wonder these two haunt their chateau which was once the royal  seat of French kings since it was built by Louis XIV in 1682.  It was the royal residence for just under 100 years when the monarchy came to an abrupt end during the French Revolution.  Bothth the King and Queen were executed by guillotine at the Place de la Revolution in 1793.

Which was your favorite haunted castle?  Or do you have one that isn’t on this post?

 

 

 

Become An Expat Expert: Your Guide To Moving Abroad

Become An Expat Expert: Your Guide To Moving Abroad

It’s certainly an exciting thing when you have decided to move abroad. No matter what country you might be coming from, or where you intend to end up, there is so much to look forward to, and if nothing else it is likely going to constitute one of the most exciting periods of your life to date. But it is also potentially fraught with stresses and difficulties, and it’s certainly wise to be as well-prepared as possible before you set off. Take a look at the following tips on how to move abroad.

Know Your Requirements

Wherever you plan to move, there are always going to be requirements when it comes to the paperwork. You need to check what the visa situation is going to be, first and foremost, and also make sure that you are aware of any restrictions regarding where you are moving from and where you are moving to. Be sure to look into all this far in advance, as that way you are going to be able to get it right, and not land yourself in any trouble further down the line.

Transporting Your Family

If you are moving solo, in many ways a lot of the process is going to be much easier. But if you are moving with your entire family, there are many things that you might need to look into if you are going to make sure you get it right. For one thing, there is the added cost of transporting your entire family, so make sure you count that in your moving budget. Then there is the issue of pets – if you need to have your cat transported safely, for instance, you will likely need the help of professionals who specialise in that area. You can view quotes on that online and go from there.

Planning To Settle In

After you have moved, you are going to have to find a way to properly settle in, and that in itself can be a very difficult thing to get right. There is going to be so much that you have to consider, and it might at first be challenging to know what to look into. The best move you can make is to plan it all out first in as much detail as possible, which will of course require plenty of research on your part before you actually move. As long as you know about how to set up the utilities, how to pay rent and so on, you are going to find it so much easier once you are out there.

Finding Your Way In The Culture

At first you might experience some degree of culture shock, depending on the nature of the transition and where you are going from and to. You just need to bear in mind that it is always going to take a while to find your way in the culture, but you will get there eventually, and in a way it is one of the most exciting parts of the journey. So get ready and try to enjoy the ride.

Virtual Tours of 5 of the World’s Creepiest Cemeteries

Virtual Tours of 5 of the World’s Creepiest Cemeteries

Nothing is creepier than a midnight stroll through a cemetery on Halloween.  I’m sure anyone with or without much imagination will find the experience to hair raising and chilling.

Exploring old cemeteries is a hobby for many people although most of the exploration is done during the day.  A while back grave rubbings were all the rage and why not many of the old tombstones have some interesting epitaphs.

But of course the Halloween season is probably the time when folks looking for things that go bump in the night will take walking tours thru some of the world’s most famous and of course haunted cemeteries.

This year travel is difficult and most I imagine would prefer to avoid crowded tours, but that doesn’t mean you can’t explore some of the world’s creepiest cemeteries virtually.  Here are 5 famous or perhaps infamous cemeteries you can wander thru without ever leaving the safety of your home or the comfort of your couch.  You may want to take it with friends and not just before bedtime.

Sleepy Hollow Cemetery

Located on the east bank of the Hudson River  just 30 miles away from the bustle of New York City in Westchester County is the village called Sleepy Hollow.  This village is in the town of Mount Pleasant.  It is the setting for Washington Irving’s short story titled the Legend of Sleepy Hollow which features the infamous headless horseman.

Washington Irving lived in nearby Tarrytown in his house named Sunnyside.  He is buried in the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery along with a lot of Rockefellers, Andrew Carnegie, Elizabeth Arden, and Leona Helmsley.  The cemetery and the village have attracted tourists since 1900 and continue to do so today.

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1

New Orleans is said to be America’s most haunted city so it’s no wonder that some of the world’s most haunted cemeteries are located there.

Lafayette Cemetery in the Garden District is the most historically significant and most haunted cemetery in NOLA.

Founded in 1833 the cemetery is still active today.

Paris Catacombs

When Parisian cemeteries became overcrowded in the 18th. Century the remains of over 6 million people were transferred to this underground ossuary (a vessel or site that houses skeletal remains).

The remains are stacked along curing dead end tunnels creating an underground maze that has become one of the scariest places in the City of Light.

Capuchin Catacombs in Palermo

Italy has no shortage of spooky catacombs but this one is located on the island of Sicily in the city of Palermo.

Originally intended as the final resting place of Capuchin priests it became a status resting place for residents when others were permitted to be concealed there.

8,000 corpses in varying stages of decomposition panel the walls.  Visitors have claimed to have heard whispers and whistles; some of them have claimed to have returned to a section only to find that some remains have shifted positions.

Highgate Cemetery

One of the “Magnificent Seven” Highgate Cemetery was the third burial ground to be built out side London.  It was built in 1839.

It is the final resting place of many historic and famous people including Karl Marx and George Michael.  It is also one of the most haunted places in the world.

Starting with the Highgate Vampire there are a host of spectre, ghost, ghouls, and devils that many have claimed to have seen in the vast cemetery and the small alleys surrounding it.

Seen enough spooky places yet?  If not check out my article about Haunted Places in 50 States!