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With March Break fast approaching, many parents have probably been trying to organize travel plans and vacations (or even staycations). It’s an exciting time of the year! It’s a chance for families to spend some quality time together and get a little break.
Travel Tips & Saving Hacks
* Plan. Research. Do your homework well in advance. Months prior to March Break, have a family “meeting” and hop online to do research and plan where you want to go, what you want to do, and ensure that you plan a vacation that will appeal to all members of the family.
* Check out hotel, attractions, restaurants, travel and other websites for March Break Savings. Many places offer discounts and deals for March Break. Make sure to do some research and take advantage of savings and discounts.
* Coupons are your friend. If you find coupons for free admission, two-for-one offers, or other discounts, use them! You’ll be surprised how much help coupons and savings will be for your travel budget!
* If you’re taking a road trip, pack your own snacks! We are no strangers to LONG road trips. 11 hour drives from Manitoulin Island to Montreal are the norm for us. Packing our own food and beverages (and using our Tim Hortons Tims Card) help in saving a few dollars. As we all know, those dollars can add up!
* Thieves and scam artists find tourists easy targets. Travelers (especially those with young children) may not pay attention to cash or any valuables they are carrying with them. Something we do is leave our expensive and valuable jewelry at home. We also photocopy our important documents like passport and drivers’ license, and carry them in a separate bag from the originals. While this may not be the sexiest thing, consider carrying a money belt to keep important items like credit cards and cash close to you at all times. We’ve been witness to just how easy it is for someone to pickpocket a wallet out of a man’s back pocket or reach into a woman’s purse while she’s shopping!
* Set alarms to ensure you have ample time to get ready and out of the house the day of your travels. Make sure to set your alarms so that you leave EARLIER than what you anticipate to be ample time.
Sounds a bit crazy, but if you have small children, you know that getting out of the house and in the vehicle always takes longer thank going anywhere sans children. There’s nothing worse than getting to the airport late and missing your flight when you’re supposed to be on your way to an amazing destination with the family. We’ve found that setting alarms for everything and being early for everything is a good idea when traveling. It greatly reduces our stress knowing we aren’t going to be late or miss anything. Better safe than sorry!
* IF you’re flying, prior to heading to the airport, it’s a good idea to confirm your flight (just to make sure your plane is on schedule). I’m one of those people who checks and double checks(and triple checks) flights and all other travel details. It’s also a good idea to pack portable activities for the kids like a notepad with crayons so they can draw or play games while waiting.
* Don’t bring too much luggage! I try to ensure that we only bring a bag each and carry-on each. The more luggage, the more to keep track of.
* Get Travel Insurance! Most of us think that we may not need to purchase travel insurance because nothing will ever happen to us. Well, there is that “what if?” that can happen to anyone. Again, better safe than sorry! By trying to “save” a few dollars in not getting travel insurance, you may end up costing yourself hundreds, if not, thousands of dollars in the end. Remember that anything may happen when you are traveling – be it by train, plane or automobile, accidents can happen. Sickness can also happen. We were in the Dominican Republic when a fellow Canadian we met became very ill. He ended up in hospital and with five IVs. That made for a very expensive vacation for him.
* Make sure family back home knows your itinerary. I’m not a Mama’s girl, but I always make sure that before we travel anywhere, I always give my mom our travel itinerary. I print out a copy of our flight information, give her all our hotel info and give her photocopies of our passports – just in case of emergency.
* Purchase your foreign currency online with CIBC Foreign Cash Online. CIBC has made it more convenient than ever to buy foreign currency with the innovative and secure service, CIBC Foreign Cash Online™.
CIBC Foreign Cash Online™ a is a 24/7, one-stop shop for foreign exchange. It lets you order cash for up to 75 foreign currencies representing more than 90 currencies, delivered within 2-3 business days. Your money can be delivered almost anywhere in Canada directly to your home for free*, or you can pick it up at any CIBC branch or at Toronto Pearson International Airport (T1 International Departures) post security.
Having the right cash for every destination is both convenient and good planning and CIBC Foreign Cash Online delivers your foreign cash right to you so you can check one more thing off your trip-planning do to list!
Even Greater News! Anyone Can Use CIBC Foreign Cash Online!
CIBC clients can use the Foreign Cash Online services through CIBC Online Banking, by clicking “Order Foreign Cash” from the left hand navigation pane. This experience is fully integrated and allows clients to order within a few simple clicks!
Non-CIBC clients can also order Foreign Cash Online, which offers all delivery options.
Learn more about CIBC Foreign Cash Online here.
Get ready for March Break Travel with CIBC!