Friday, June 08, 2007

Help for Susie

This is one of the things I like about blogging. All of you helpful people out there on your computers.

So I'm going to use you.

We've got major travel scheduled for this next year. Cool places, like Asia and Africa.

But here's the deal: I HATE flying. Which means not only do I need help with things like getting through a flight, and managing jet leg on the other side, but the trip has to be great when I get there. So I need all your best travel tips. Things I should absolutely not forget to bring? And - this is major - what are the best walking shoes you've ever found?

Also, since I'm in a traveling mood . . . what's the favorite trip you've ever taken?



Michele Hauf said...

Oh, fun, Susie! Our intrepid adventurer! You can blog about your trips when you return.

I never get on a plane without my trusty ginger tablets. Keeps my stomach calm. Works wonders if you're not a good flyer.

When I went to Paris, I picked up something at a health food store called No-Jet Lag. You take tablets like every two hours during the flight, and then when you arrive. I think it helped. I was ready to go to sleep around 3 in the afternoon after we'd got to Paris, but for some reason I stayed awake until 1 am that day! Must have been a combination of the pills and the excitement of having finally made it there.

I'd like to hear about good walking shoes as well.

Not sure if Asia and Africa have metro systems, but that was my favorite part of Paris!


Candace said...

For flying, my must haves are bottled water, lip balm, and moisturizer. Planes are always so drying! Of course, I'm not sure they let you bring those things on board anymore.

For walking, try Easy Spirit shoes. Very comfortable.

And to combat jet lag...jump into whatever time zone you're in. If it's breakfast time when you arrive, have breakfast and go out into the sunlight. If it's bedtime, go to bed. That's always worked for me. 'Course, when you get home there's no cure except to go to bed and sleep the sleep of the dead for three days straight.

Cindy Gerard said...

Susie - your trips sound amazing. I'm going to Italy in Sept so I've been asking seasoned trans-Atlantic travels for tips as well. So far, this is what I've got:
1) take a sleeping pill an hour before you board the plane and pray it works for the long flight over
2) substitute benadryl for the sleeping pill and pray it works
3) as soon as you land, take 2 alka seltzer. Seriously. My source tells me it gets rid of all those awful, fluish feelings you have due to jetlag.
4) pack LIGHT, light, light. Get everything in your carry-ons if possible. You're going to be schlepping your luggage all over the place and it gets darn heavy. Visit the Travelsmith website for great wrinkle free, rinse and wash clothes.
5) Shoes: Dansko. Google their website. they have both sandals and regular shoes. the deal with them is that the soles are thick and cushioned BUT they don't bend from heel to toe which is critical if you're on your feet a long time. And they look great too.
That's it. That's all I got. Hope it helps.


FIONA said...


Pack some of everyones clothes in EACH BAG. We had one bag go missing, and one family member was without everything for a long trip. It was very expensive to buy even the basics for one.

Pack LAYERS of clothes, that are all washable. Then pack CAMP SOAP (available at REI) along with clothes that have been treated to repel bugs and have a good sun blocking effect. Don't forget a hat.

Store all ckecked liquids in bottles that are 3/4 full, with the extra air squeezed out. Then put the bottles on a freezer zip top bag. You should avoid a mess this way.

Take a copy of all prescriptions, and get a Medic Alert account for anyone with a medical condition. Download medical records on a keychain jumpdrive. Take an extra jump drive to download digital pictures.

Photocopy tickets, IDs, and itenerary, and email/fax it to two friends/relatives. We had a glitch in Spain and this saved our a**.

Take a picture of all of your bags before you leave, opened and closed, for insurance purposes.

Best trip was the grand canyon with my DH. I can't wait to go back.

Have fun!

Cindy Gerard said...

Wow, Fiona. Great advice. I wouldn't have thought of any of that.

Barbara Samuel said...

Cindy, are you going to Matera? We're going.

My favorite walking shoes are walking sandals.

For long flights (and both of those are really long), I have a specific backpack I take. Water, socks, two books, notebook, pens (not gel--they leak on planes), hard candy for dry mouth, my own earphones to block noise. I've never been brave enough to wear eye masks, but I bet they'd help.

Also, wear layers of clothing on the plane, starting with comfortable pants (yoga pants are great), and layering a thin shirt, a long sleeved shirt, a sweater you find very comfortable. This can double as a pillow. Have some sort of inside pockets and keep your most important things there--passport, credit card, some cash.

On the plane, stretch a lot.

You really have to come back and tell us all about it. Africa and Asia!!

My favorite trip: New Zealand. But I'm still aiming for India next year sometime if I can figure out how to squeeze it in.

Susan Kay Law said...

Oh, man, Fiona, I never would have thought of some of those! Thanks!

Barbara, which kind of sandals? I'd love good sandals; it's going to be hot.

My favorites thus far:

A week in Paris, with my husband. Great weather, great food; he took me to celebrate my fortieth.

Skiing in Lake Louie. THE most beautiful place I've ever seen, and we stayed at the Chateau, a great bargain because of the time of year and we got an upgrade because an Indian wedding took over a big chunk of the hotel. Looking out over that lake and mountains every morning . . . Skiing wa great. Except that run my husband insisted must have an easy way down, and didn't.

Anonymous said...

I have been to Asia three times, and all I can say about long plane trips is DRINK LOTS OF WATER! It has the added benefit of making you get up and walk around when you need to visit the ladies' room. :-)

Get out into the daylight on the
first day. It really does help "reset" your body to the time zone faster.

Kaitlin said...

My family never traveled much when I was a kid. We went all over Oregon & parts of Washington, but I'm 30 & I've never been on a plane (not that I feel bad about that he-he).

My favorite vacations were when I was a kid. Every May, we'd take a long weekend & go down to the Oregon Coast. If you've never been, let me just say that it's beautiful. It's still wild & untamed.

We'd get a hotel room & spend the time as a family. Long walks on the beach and all that wonderful stuff. Sometimes I really miss that.

Mary C, said...

When I traveled to China, I brought along toilet paper and alcohol wipes. The wipes were mostly used to for cleaning eating utensils and bottle/can tops.

Cindy Gerard said...

Yes - I'm going to Matera! Cool. It will be great to see you there!!