It doesn’t matter if this is your first time traveling out of time or if you have racked up thousands of frequent flyer miles; the prospect of taking a trip out of town can be a very exciting and stressful time. For some insight into making a trip to remember, check out the advice in these travel tips.

When traveling, whether it’s for a day or a month, don’t advertise your absence on social media sites. If you do, this lets people know that you’re going to be away from home and that most likely your house will be empty. This significantly raises your chances of being robbed while you’re out of town.

Consider mailing souvenirs home. Everyone loves souvenirs, but sometimes you can wind up with one too many while traveling. If all the things you have accumulated on your vacation won’t fit in your suitcase for the return trip, you can always mail them home. Usually, you will make it home before your trinkets do.

Look beyond the touristy souvenir shops. To find a souvenir that will remind you of your travels and actually comes from the place you visited, shop with the locals. In grocery stores, markets, and other stores that are off the beaten (tourist) track, you’ll find things that locals actually use instead of the mass-produced trinkets.

Label your things. You know all of those return address labels you have accumulated over the years? Put them to good use as labels for your items. Stick them on everything from luggage and handbags to cameras and umbrellas. In case you lose an item, it will be much easier to get it returned to you.

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Keep close track of your belongings while traveling, especially important things like money and identification. If you carry a purse, you want to make sure that it is tucked under your arm securely. If it has a long enough strap, you should have the strap crossing your body. Avoid the use bags with zippers that will provide easy access to nearby theives that could easily take your valuables. You should keep these things in mind when trying to find a travel bag that will be reliable for you.

If you want to escape your daily routine and not have to worry about anything, you should consider going to a tourist resort. These resorts take care of absolutely everything for you and create a safe environment. It is easy to make new friends and keep your children entertained while you enjoy the beach and great weather.

When traveling by plane, make sure to wear shoes that are easy to remove. You will be required to remove your shoes to go through security, so wearing slip-on or Velcro shoes will allow you to remove them quickly. Once they come out of the scanner, you will be able to quickly replace them and be on your way.

Travelers without children should not be too quick to judge or get angry with small children on a public mode of transportation. Traveling with children is quite stressful for the parents as well and they are usually highly embarrassed by their child’s behavior. Try to remember that you were once a child as well and if in a plane, recognize that high altitudes are quite hard on a small child’s inner ears.

If you are traveling on a cruise ship, consider departing from a “drive-up port”. This option saves you money, but you might have trouble parking. Get there one day before you leave and keep your car in the hotel’s lot for the length of your trip. Most hotels in these areas advertise this perk, but if you don’t see it, ask about it when you call.

Join a travel forum before you go anywhere. Select the destination that you are going and join a forum related to the area or service you are using. These people have plenty of experience in their travels and will give you helpful advice on where to go, eat and stay.

If you need to find a place to eat or want recommendations for a local attraction, stay away from hotel employees. Most of them are given money to advise you to go to certain locations. Visit shops, cafes or restaurants that you like and ask them for advice on where you should go.

If you’re packing your laptop for work or recreation while you travel, bring along an A.V. cable as well. Many hotels offer both free high speed Internet and a large HDTV in your room. If you’ve got an A.V. cable, you can plug your computer right into the HDTV and view your online content right on the large screen.

Purchase an inexpensive prepaid cell phone in your destination country if you travel abroad. Many phone companies have very high fees for international use. Instead of racking up a large bill, purchase an inexpensive prepaid cell phone when you arrive, so you can stay in touch without the massive bill.

Make sure you know what the weather will be when you are planning out your vacation. Check forecasts so that you know what the weather will be during your stay. Nothing can ruin the best travel plans quicker than ending up on a freezing beach in Florida or a sweltering ski slope in Colorado.

Put your name and phone number on both the inside and outside of your luggage. This way, if your luggage happens to get lost and your information is faded away on the outside, at least your contact information will still be available on the inside. Make sure to do this for all of your luggage.

Don’t be afraid to eat outside while traveling on vacation. Grab a sheet from the hotel; you can use it as a picnic blanket or a table cloth. Pick a location that you have been wanting to visit and get take-out from a local restaurant. Enjoy having a leisurely lunch or dinner in a beautiful place with your family.

Even the most seasoned traveler sometimes needs a little reminder about how to make the most of their time spent abroad. Whether you need some fresh insight into packing, planning, or making memories during the course of your trip, keeping these tips in mind is sure to help you from start to finish.