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Showing posts with label family travel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label family travel. Show all posts

Jan 18, 2016

Mardi Gras 2016 Travel & Gadgets

Mardi Gras 2016 is on Tuesday, February 9


Mardi Gras Weather
The weather during Mardi Gras can vary from very cold to very warm, almost hot. Sometimes it will change from one extreme to the other during the same day. It’s a good idea to layer your clothes since a chilly morning may turn into a warm afternoon. Since you will be spending long days outside, pack comfortable shoes and clothes that can get somewhat dirty. The streets tend to get dirty with stuff thrown around, spilled, and tossed. Don’t forget to check the forecast for rain. If storms are predicted, then you’ll definitely want to bring a rain jacket and/or umbrella.

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Cameras
With all things going on and colorful floats and costumes, you will need a camera to grab all the moments. Take a lot of shots to keep the memories of the events. Bring along a good fast digital camera to capture it all. And don't forget an extra media card to store the pictures and videos.
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Smartphone
It is a good idea to get a map of the city and study the areas you'll be visiting. New Orleans is a "checkerboard city" - safe neighborhoods can be within blocks of unsafe areas. Your hotel concierge or front desk can help you with route times, traffic and parking. A smartphone also can come very handy to find recommendation for better areas, view maps (How To: Use Google Maps Offline When Traveling), and find the reviews for local restaurants and other activities.

Watch
Since the events during the Mardi Gras celebration are planned out and per schedule, to see them you would need to get there on time. And it is highly recommended to get there early. That is the only way to get the best viewing spots. 2016 Mardi Gras Parade Schedule
Watches on Amazon.com

Parade routes can look empty, but the crowd can fill in fast within an hour or two of the parade. For the biggest parades rolling in the evenings on the weekend before Mardi Gras, plan to get there about four hours ahead of time to get yourself a great spot.

You Never Know What They’ll Throw.
The screaming crowds line the street waiting for throws from the floats. Some of these can include monogrammed toilet paper, sunglasses shaped like toilets, Spam and hot dogs. Anyone can come home with beads. Though the most sought after souvenirs are the unique throws that are sometimes tossed from the floats with interesting themes. Throws often include toys, stuffed animals, beads and more that would be fun for the kids.
Bring big bags to hold all of the stuff that you will catch. Collapsible bags that are light and compact but open up to large size would be great to pack for this purpose.
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Accessories and Necessities
I would advise clothing with close-able inside pockets and/or a hidden money belt. Crowds, crowds, and more crowds. Float parades draw a lot of attention. But they also draw your attention away from your belongings. Making them a prime areas for pickpockets and such.

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Toilet Paper 
A port-o-potty in the area is very likely not to have any or if there is it will be wet. Hotels will NOT let you in to use the bathroom, same goes for restaurants. Take note.

Hand Sanitizer
For bathroom breaks and many many other uses during the trip

A Small Flashlight
Port-o-potties don’t have lights either. And it can come in handy in hotel room or on the road

Small bottle of water
Important to stay hydrated, especially if consuming alcohol

Extra batteries/chargers for cell phone, camera, and all other accessories that light up

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Sunglasses


Did You Know?:
Why does Mardi Gras fall on different dates each year?
The date of Mardi Gras changes every year because it's connected to Easter, which can fall on any Sunday between March 23 and April 25. Mardi Gras is always scheduled to take place 47 days before Easter.

Do I need to buy Mardi Gras beads and merchandise before my visit?
Not unless you are going to be a rider on a float. If you plan to watch the parades during Mardi Gras, you'll catch so much you won't be able to carry it all!

Related posts:
Keep Your Gadgets Safe While Traveling
How to Keep Your Money Safe While Traveling
Cruise Travel: Gadgets and Accessories on our South America Trip

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Dec 17, 2015

Travel News - Gadget Related - December

Travel News - Gadget Related - December


7 Easy Tips for Taking Way Better Travel Photos (+ The Gear I Use)
www.bemytravelmuse.com/how-to-improve-my-travel-photograph/

Expedia to acquire HomeAway for $3.9bn
www.breakingtravelnews.com/news/article/expedia-to-acquire-homeaway

Best Water Bottle with Filter Guide ~ What to Buy and Why
gogreentravelgreen.com/water-bottle-with-filter

10 Top Tips for Safe Family Travel
www.familiesgotravel.com/2015/11/10-top-tips-for-safe-family-travel

United Airlines rolls out iPhones to airport staff
breakingtravelnews.com/news/article/united-airlines-rolls-out-iphones-to-airport-staff

Travel Gadget: Momax 11200mAh iPower GO+ External Battery Pack Review
outoftownblog.com/travel-gadget-momax-11200mah-ipower-go-external-battery-pack-review/

Travel Tip: Why It’s Illegal for Hotels to Block Wi-Fi Hotspots
petergreenberg.com/2015/11/25/illegal-hotels-block-wi-fi-hotspots/

How tech has changed the way we travel
www.thetravelchica.com/2015/11/how-tech-has-changed-the-way-we-travel



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Nov 9, 2015

Aruba Vacation - Kids Gadgets and Accessories

Aruba Vacation - Kids Gadgets and Accessories


This was our kid's first long trip as mentioned in the first post of the series (Aruba - First Family Trip South - Summer Continued). Overall, the trip was a success. So much so that we just booked our next one that will be in the start of the new year.
In packing for the trip, her luggage space outweighed both of ours. Besides clothes and shoes, she also was bringing toys, food, drinks, carriage, and multitude of gadgets to keep her entertained.

Backpack with a leash
Not only did this little pack contain all of the goodies that would be easily accessible to her during the flight, it came in very handy at the airport as well. It also helped that she liked wearing it. Quite a difference from the animal version we originally got. This one had very stiff straps and they were rubbing and hurting her. Brica By-my-side Safety Harness Backpack has soft padded straps, comfy and breathable design and is light.

Inside the backpack there was
- light up ball with unique shape that prevents it from rolling away
- small travel books
- kids camera that shows different image upon click
- stuffed animal
- and washable crayons

Refresh-a-Baby Water Bottle Adapter
Easily replaceable tops for bottles. Genius. Instead of bringing with us multiple baby bottles from which our kiddo still drinks milk, that take up a lot of space within the bags, we brought these small packable tops. They can fit on just about any plastic bottle that we might buy anyhow to drink water. And we would be able to recycle it instead of tossing out by pouring milk in there and for kid to able to sip at their own pace from it.

Drawing Travel Board


Headphones
After seeing reviews on multiple kid travel blogs and reading through reviews on amazon.com, we got her the Kidz Gear Wired Headphones. These are very light, and comfortable on the head. As you can see I tried them on too. They are easily adjustable to quite a few head sizes. They also come with a chord that can limit the maximum value to safeguard toddlers ears. They had great sound. Much better than the cheap earbuds or the ones offered (sold) on the plane.

Sunglasses

Water bottle
Stephen Joseph Owl Stainless Steel Water Bottle - This water bottle is made for toddler. Gives them independence to drink by themselves. They can imitate adults when drinking from a bottle. And it has a top that closes completely to prevent spills in addition to the cap that keeps it clean.

Rash guard shirts
Kiddo was swimming in these almost the entire time. They kept her protected from the direct sunlight since they have 100% UV protection. The shirts also kept her warm on the beach since they dried quickly. It also meant putting on less sunscreen as not as much of her skin was exposed while we swam or played on the beach.

Water/beach shoes
While we wore ours only in the water to be able to walk on the ocean floor covered with rocks, she wore hers on the beach to keep her feet safe from various shells, rocks, and other things in the sand.

Phone preloaded with cartoons and games
Before leaving on vacation, we preloaded our phone with several gigabytes of cartoons and educational games and videos. It was a life and sanity saver during eating out and other times of toddler hysterics. During the stay we did not have WiFi and did not take the phone off of airplane mode as to not incur any roaming charges. We still were able to use it for entertainment as well as a notebook.

Phone holder
This little accessory was irreplaceable while using the phone at meals and we were very glad we took it with us. The phone stayed off the table in the right position for viewing and accessing controls. The holder folds up flat and is very light to just throw in our bag with all the rest of the stuff.

Sand Toys
Two buckets filled with sand toys were the unexpected, yet very helpful, babysitter on the beach. Once out of the water, the kiddo would play with them for at least half hour if not more. This gave us some time to arrange beach accessories, sit back, relax and sometimes even read our Kindles.

Sound-off: How do you travel with your kids? And what essentials do you bring along? Let us know below

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