Happy (Long) Weekend!
The 4th of July is hands down one of the best holidays in the US. You can’t beat time with family and friends, BBQs, fireworks, and summer activities. Hopefully you’re reading this edition poolside or out on a hammock, but no matter where you are, pour yourself a cup of coffee (or tea if you’re on the other side of the pond) and get settled in for this week’s Weekend Wanderlust edition.
What you’ll find in this newsletter:
- Traveling Chic’s New Articles (A London Neighborhood Guide (And What Best Fits Your Personality); What to Pack for Martha’s Vineyard; Summer To-Do List; 10 Most Charming Town’s to Visit in America
- Travel Tip of the Week
- Travel Gear Find of the Week
- In-flight reading
- Quoting Harry S. Truman
- Hotel Spotlight
- A Printable Checklist of Must do Activities in Paris
- The best links around the internet this week
Let’s get started!
This Week on Traveling Chic:
Travel Tip of the Week
I had my passport stolen once, although not in the way you’d probably expect. I was working as a flight attendant and my assigned location to stow my luggage was in a random spot on a Boeing 777. At some point during the flight my passport was taken. Fortunately I was arriving into the US from China so I didn’t have too many problems getting through customs. I don’t feel totally to blame, but I definitely think I could have protected my passport better so it wouldn’t have been easy to grab. It was probably sitting on the top of my bag and if I had hidden it or put it in a zippered pocket, it may have prevented the theft.
When I studied abroad in Rome one of my professors was pick pocketed twice. Now I know Rome is a city that is infamous for pickpockets, but twice?! He was the quintessential absentminded professor with his head in the clouds and absolutely no situational awareness. So while I don’t think it’s right that he was pick pocketed, I do feel that there are so many things he could have done to prevent this from happening.
With my professor (and YOU!) in mind, we’ve compiled a list of my best tips to avoid getting pick pocketed while traveling.
- Leave your valuables in a hotel safe if possible, or at least hide your laptop or iPad at the bottom of your luggage.
- Spread out your valuables so everything isn’t in one purse or wallet.
- Walk to a safe and less crowded area to pull your money or phone out.
- When you sit down at a restaurant or outdoor cafe, loop your bag around your leg, arm, or even a chair leg. Pickpockets love restaurants because tourists are relaxed and let their guard down.
- Secure your bags when sleeping on a train.
- Some of the best pickpockets are women and children. Trust no one! haha – Just kidding. But do remember that a pickpocket could be anyone.
- Enjoy the scenery but walk with a purpose in heavily congested areas.
- Dress to fit in.
- Wear a money belt or pickpocket proof clothing.
- In some countries it’s best not to wear your camera around your neck (I had a friend get his snatched right off him in Brazil)
PLACES TO BE EXTRA CAUTIOUS
- Train stations
- Pulling money from an ATM
- Outside of museums, monuments, or other high tourist areas
- Don’t walk in deserted areas at night if you can avoid it (think about safety when booking your hotel location)
- Riding on public transportation
SCAMS TO BE AWARE OF
- Rose for your Girlfriend – Someone will approach you to buy a rose for your loved one and will follow you around until you buy one. Give them a firm NO and walk away quickly. I’ve also seen thugs in NY offer you a free CD and once you take it they bully you into paying for it. Again, just walk away.
- Don’t sign any petitions on drugs, on Tibetan monks, or just to be safe… on anything!
- Don’t let anyone offer to take your luggage on or off a train. They may try to bully you into tipping them or worse take something.
- Be careful with your phone on public transportation. Thieves love to snatch your phone and slip off the train right as the doors are closing.
- Be cautious of distractions. From shoving maps in your face (or even a baby in your arms), to a fake dropped wallet, to bumping into you, or just some sort of mock scene to grab your attention. These distractions come in all sorts of forms.
Travel Gear Find of the Week
I like to travel with a big tote that holds a lot, so it’s no surprise that it can take me forever to find my keys or wallet at the bottom of the bag! Recently, though, I bought one of these tote organizers off of Amazon. It’s been a total game changer. It keeps everything organized and can be transferred from tote to tote quickly without having to reorganize everything!
Hotel Spotlight: Bolt Farm Treehouse
The Bolt Farm Treehouse is one of the most popular Airbnb rentals in South Carolina – so popular in fact, there is a wait list to rent the property. Located just over 30 minutes from Charleston, this would be the perfect nature escape to add onto your trip. With the tech-free environment you’ll get the downtime you’re craving. Combine this with the whimsical nature of a treehouse and it’s the perfect opportunity to pretend your a kid again – without having to compromise modern adult amenities! There are a few treehouses to choose from, but the Honeymoon Treehouse would be perfect for an anniversary trip (amenities include a hot tub, outdoor shower and pizza oven!).
For those of you who love diving into a good personal memoir, this may be the pick for you. Set in Italy and filled with Italian recipes, traditions, and love – this has my name written all over it. Oh and it’s one of Reese Witherspoon’s recent book club picks – which typically does not disappoint.
Reese says: “This book gives me all the feels! This beautiful memoir takes us on Tembi’s personal journey of love, parenthood, and ultimately the loss of her husband. She learns to heal in the most beautiful way—through the support of three generations of women—and yes, there’s Italian food. Lots and lots of Italian food! I can’t wait for you to fall in love with this book the way I did.”
Quoting Harry S. Truman:
Love this quote and perfectly fits the patriotism I’m feeling this week!
“America was built on courage, on imagination, and an unbeatable determination…”
A Printable Checklist for Things to Do in Paris:
Have you had to take a Myers Briggs Test? I’m an ENFJ! If yes, you’ll enjoy this.
What actually happens to your donated clothes. This could be eye-opening.
An Escape Room in Buckingham Palace. Never thought I’d hear that!
The Beckham’s had a private tour of Versailles on their 20th Anniversary. Relationship goals!