Asperger’s and the Holidays

In my private practice I’ve noticed a trend. Around November, old, current and new clients call wanting to schedule sessions to talk about one topic: the holidays. The trend is not surprising: most therapists find themselves busy at this time of year, when expectations and realities can clash, and even the most mature find themselves stuck in teenager roles and feelings long since discarded.

But for a therapist who counsels adults with Asperger’s the increase in client need may be surprising to some. Aren’t Aspies supposed to be unconcerned with the judgments of others, even family members? Don’t Aspies face holiday family time with few, if any, expectations for intimacy or fun? Don’t Aspies who find themselves alone during the holidays consider their solitude a “Get Free Out of Jail” card, rather than a reason for loneliness or depression? After all, Aspies don’t really seek out relationships, right? If any of these assumptions sound familiar to you, beware of the Aspie Stereotype, which pervades media (think “Rainman”), research teams (think “Yale”), pop culture (think SNL’s “Nick Burns: The computer Guy”) and even some therapist circles (not me!).

Contrary to popular notions regarding Asperger’s, many clinicians, those who work in the trenches with adults struggling with the challenges of Asperger’s, find their Aspie clients confused and overwhelmed by the holidays. Most of us harbor conscious or unconscious expectations about the holidays – how they should feel, who they should be spent with, how tall the tree should be, who should host dinner…the list can go on. A lack of awareness of one’s own “rules” regarding the holidays can set the stage for confusion, disappointment, impulse coping skills and depression. If you have Asperger’s, you may be surprised at your own “automatic” answers to questions such as:

Should holidays be spent with friends or family? Should loved ones exchange gifts, or not? Who should travel where for the holiday celebration? Tinsel, or lights? While these questions may seem trivial, they’re not – and often they shed light on our automatic thoughts that go unchallenged and cause problems. For instance, if your “rule” is that Christmas or Hanukkah is a commercialized money-making holiday to benefit department stores, you may refuse to participate, and thus miss genuine opportunities to connect with loved ones. If you automatically decree that holidays should be spent with family or friends, you may miss the comfort that solitude can bring you.

Please don’t fall into the trap of trying to live up to what you think “normal holidays” (an oxymoron) should be like. Holidays for Aspies are often riddled with “shoulds”, which trigger resentment and resistance. Adults with Asperger’s who give themselves permission to meet their own unique needs for togetherness and solitude, fun and rest, engagement and disengagement, often find themselves less pressured, less anxious and more accepting of themselves and others. This balanced approach can prevent total shutdown mode, which is a natural response to over stimulation and helplessness.

Here are some tips Aspies may find helpful:

Plan for taking breaks during visits. Examples are taking a walk outside, taking a nap with a book, taking some quiet time for deep breathing, taking a quick ride or offering to run an errand in the car, playing a video game with someone or alone, or announcing a time-out and removing yourself from the group.

Schedule realistically. Over scheduling during the holidays can lead to burnout when being around people is gratifying, but stressful (or just plain difficult). While it’s great to push yourself to socialize, the holidays are a time to be reasonable – don’t expect yourself to go from no parties to three or four in a month. Beware of the lure of substance use. Many of us rely on the cocktail or two to help ease party anxiety. While there may not be too much harm in this, most clinicians see a surge in substance use during the holidays, which can lead to hangovers, a shaken sense of self, embarrassment, or worse. Remember that as long as you’re using substances to quell the anxiety, you’re not truly growing in your ability to handle social situations.

Be extra kind to yourself. This sounds corny, and it is. But think about it: we spend so much time during the holidays thinking about giving to others (or avoiding it!), but how much do we think about truly giving to ourselves? This is the time to use kind words and actions to take care of yourself. Ideas include buying or checking out a new book, going to the movies alone, eating a favorite meal, spending quiet time petting the cat. Seek help if you need to. Holiday therapy can be a temporary bridge to January 2! Here’s to your success in creating a holiday this year that you can anticipate with groundedness and optimism.

Deep Sea Fishing Tips

Fishing in the deep sea is an amazing experience that once tried you will never forget. Here are some tips that will help you to enjoy your trip even more.

1. Watch what the sea and its wildlife are telling you

If you see birds, such as gulls, hovering over an area of water, pay attention. There is a strong likelihood that there are smaller fish that are used by fishermen for bait in the immediate area. This shows that there will be larger fish under the surface of the water. Driftwood is another sign of larger fish in the area. Follow these simple indications and you will be landing fish in no time.

2. Watch out for snooks hiding places

If you are on the lookout for snooks on your fishing trip, remember to look underneath ledges as they are a favorite hiding place for them. Snooks are very similar in their habits to bass.

3. Use crabs during a full moon

Crabs tend to shed their skins during the full moon. So when fishing during a full moon, try using soft crab imitations for your bait. This will entice stripers out of their hiding places to look for the crabs.

4. Find dolphins when fishing for tuna

If you are fishing for tuna, particularly yellowfin, the best way to spot them is to look for dolphins. Tuna school with them, so if you see dolphins you can bet that tuna won’t be far away. Just be sure to be careful that you don’t land a dolphin by accident since they are a protected species and must be treated with respect.

5. Burn, don’t cut

If you find that you can’t cut your line, try burning through it instead. You will find it is much easier to do and avoid being cut if your scissors slip.

6. Fish near a reef.

If you haven’t tried it before, fish near a reef. You will be surprised at the number of large fish that are feeding on smaller fish that live on a reef.

7. Raise your chances with a Circle Hook

If you would like to raise your hook up quota, opt for a circle hook. They will increase your catches due to their make up. And you will find removing the hook easier as it will not stick in the fish gut.

8. Find your sea legs

If you find that you are suffering from sea sickness try watching the horizon. It may sound silly but try to stay on deck if you can. Staying downwind of fumes is also advisable as they can make you feel worse.

9. Anchor trouble

If you discover that you cannot raise your anchor after dropping, use a float attached to it. By noting when the tide turns you should be able to free the anchor and set sail once again.

10. Find the fish in order to fish successfully

If you thought that you should be catching your live bait first and then moving away from the reef to catch more fish, think again. If you stay near the live bait, you increase your chances of catching the larger fish that are feeding on them.

Las Vegas Vacation – Tips, Tricks and Cautions

These “cautions”, “tips”, and “tricks” are offered to help make your Las Vegas Vacation as enjoyable, fast and easy to plan as possible. Whether this is your first trip to “Fabulous Las Vegas” or you are a veteran, you’ll find some useful tips and tricks here.

Las Vegas Travel Tips: First and foremost, the biggest mistake many travelers to Las Vegas make in planning a trip is to book the cheapest air fare/hotel package “available anywhere”. These are offered everywhere from your hometown newspaper to television ads to especially, e-mail spam. Beware!

Why? A Cheap Las Vegas Vacation is good, we agree! BUT, did you know virtually all Las Vegas Hotels have 2- 3 levels of room quality (or options)? Now, we mean even many of the five star, “big ones” many of these are just plain substandard rooms, maybe with a nice view of the air conditioning system! (This actually happened to me personally, and was it Loud!)

Things like older bed mattresses, no safes, old decorating, long walks to the casino, restraunts, shows, or even a taxi. Did you know there are monorail trains running right behind some of the rooms? How about a roller coaster right outside your window? And lots more. Just remember “cheapest” is just that. Ask at the front desk at check-in exactly where your room is, look at it before signing in if possible.

We aren’t pushing for only high dollar rooms here, just get the best quality room your budget will allow, you will be very glad you did.

Why book your Hotel first? Las Vegas is booked up an average of 94% year round, so plan ahead (at least 30+ days is recommended) to get the exact days you want, where you want, room quality you want. Plus, usually it’s less expensive to book well in advance. Did you know that Sunday through Thursday is less expensive? When you get your selected Las Vegas Hotel booked, then you can book a flight to fit the days in and out to fit YOUR schedule.

Makes sense doesn’t it?

Once you get your Las Vegas Hotel booked first. Then you can book the Las Vegas Shows that you want, when you want. Be sure to check to see if your particular show choice isn’t “dark” on your selected days. Holidays are a good example of dark days.

Then book your Las Vegas Tour. (If you have never experienced the thrill of a Helicopter Ride at night over “Glitter Gulch and Downtown”, or a daytime trip over the Boulder Dam and Grand Canyon this is something you will never forget!) It isn’t as expensive as you might think! Check our tours links for prices and times.

This is the entertainment capital of the World, so allow yourself enough time to take in as many attractions (dozens are free) as possible, it will make your Las Vegas Vacation much more memorable. If possible, book an extra night stay just to allow for a special Las Vegas Tour or a day of Las Vegas Golf.

Las Vegas Gambling Tips:

Gambling is the lifeblood of Las Vegas. You didn’t really think those billion dollar hotels were built by “winners” did you? Set a daily budget for gambling and stick to it! You do have a good chance at winning. Hundreds if not thousands of “Hand Pay Jackpots” are paid every day. Be careful though, those chips, tokens and ticket-in/ticket-out seem too much like “play money” they are not they are your real money! Stick to your budget! Did I say that already?

Get a “players card” everywhere you go and use it, or if you are a “table player” ask the pit boss to “rank” or “rate” you. They will track your play and comp you accordingly with all kinds of free stuff. Such as meals, rooms, clothing, limos, gift shop points and even cash. These really help put the odds in your favor.

Seems like my “budget” is always too small, but try your best to set a reasonable daily goal and stick to it, don’t tap into tomorrows budget! Just maybe you’ll walk away a big winner! It happens every day. Remember the phrase: “Walk away when ahead”!

It’s not my place to preach, but here are some very useful Las Vegas tips on handling your money. All that cash in the casinos you see everywhere attracts some pretty shady characters (read Crooks!) Security is excellent, but there are always a few, and it just takes one to ruin a perfect vacation.

Las Vegas Security:

Ladies, bring or buy a small purse with a neck strap or waste pouch, or fanny pack, something that is comfortable enough to keep on your person all the time. Never ever set your purse on the floor or next to a machine, or on a stool next to you. This is a magnet for thieves! Keep that strap around your neck.

Most thieves work in pairs, one to distract you, the other to snag your purse. Just a couple types of distractions they use are: one will drop a coin or dollar bill or two near you on the floor and ask you “is that your cash on the floor?” while the other grabs your stuff, or overly talkative “players” will sit down next to you and jabber to get your attention, while their partner grabs your stuff, or hits the payout button and walks away with your ticket. Believe me. This does happen. They are very slick and fast, so just be aware.

When you do accumulate a couple winning tickets, hide them in your wallet or purse until you are ready to cash them in, and then stash the cash. Remember the “walk away” tip?

Men: It isn’t degrading to wear a waste pouch. Okay, if you just don’t want to, then fold your bills and keep them in your front pants pocket. If they “pickpocket” your wallet with all your credit cards in it at least you’ll have your cash, or vice versa, just keep them separated. And, watch those tickets.

If you do hit a good size jackpot, take the money to the safe in your room or take it to the Hotel desk for safekeeping. Or, ask for a Security escort to your room or car. They are happy to provide this service. Don’t walk around the casino or streets with a big wad of cash!

The Security at all Hotels and Casinos is excellent. With all those thousands of cameras (Eyes in the sky) every inch of the casino is being taped continuously. (Did you know that Nevada law requires casinos to have this level of security?) It is for your protection as well as the Hotel/Casino.

Now please understand, we are not trying to scare you away here, but rather just make you aware! It is real easy to get caught up in all the flashing lights, noise, overhead shows, people watching and normal distractions of a casino. Just don’t give them an opportunity to ruin your fun.

Follow these Las Vegas Travel Tips and they will make your Las Vegas Vacation a lifetime memory.

This article may be reprinted in its entirety for use, but must include this link to

Business Traveling Tips for Men – How to Pack Your Carry on Luggage

Keeping your shirts­ and suits free of wrinkles is a constant problem for business travelers. Would you like to learn how to better manage your business clothes while traveling? Whether you’re an experienced business traveler or a first time traveler, follow these tips and your clothing will arrive at their destination wrinkle free.

Don’t let packing clothes be a stressful part of your trip. The problems always begin by packing too many items into a small carry on bag. You must make sure you have the correct size piece of carry on luggage for the intended items and duration of travel. Over packing items into your suitcase is the main cause of clothes developing wrinkles. Be realistic when packing and limit the amount of clothes you take on your trip. When traveling for extended periods of time, consider using a larger bag that you may have to have checked.

Once you have the right luggage for your trip, then you have to pack your clothing in a way to avoid wrinkles. The key to avoiding wrinkles is pack your delicate items in the middle of your case. Keep the delicate clothing away from the edges to limit the amount of wrinkling. Place your T-shirts first, your suites next, followed by shirts and ties, then your other clothes. Packing in this way will cushion your suites and other delicate items that are prone to wrinkling. Use caution when packing your shoes as these are a common cause of wrinkled clothes. Modern carry on luggage have compartments specifically for shoe storage and other hard items.

Garment bags are very useful and I highly suggest buying one for packing dress shirts and suits. Using a garment bag, in addition to your carry on luggage, is the best method for preventing wrinkles to your dress clothes. There are luggage manufactures that offer a folding garment bag which stores in your suitcase after packing. These are the most convenient when going directly to your hotel from the airport.

Silk neckties are among the most delicate items to pack in your suitcase. Other options to silk neckties are those made from wrinkle-free microfiber, but nothing really compares to a silk necktie. So, when packing your neckties, keep them away from the edges of your suitcase and away from objects that have sharp edges. It’s best to place them in the center of your other clothes which offer the best padding. Rolling your ties is another option for preventing wrinkles. Begin rolling from the narrow end which give a uniformly tight role and will fit easily into your dress shoes. If money is no problem, you can buy one of the commercially manufactured necktie travel cases, which will definitely keep your ties free of wrinkles.

It’s important to unpack your items as soon as you arrive at your destination. After unpacking, place your suits, shirts, trousers and neckties on hangers and hang them in the closet. Remember, failure to unpack and hang up your clothes will result in severely wrinkled clothing and all of you efforts will have been a waste of time.

Make sure you stay at a hotel that provides an iron and ironing board in your room as this will give you the ability to take care of those small wrinkles yourself. Do not iron your suits of neckties! If you see wrinkles on your suits or ties, hang them in the bathroom during your hot, steamy shower. As soon as you’re finished with your shower the wrinkles will be gone. Following these tips will insure a wrinkle free trip.

Vacations – 5 Tips for Booking a Vacation Online

You’ve heard it a million times before, but if it’s sounds too good to be true well guess what it is! Like most things when booking a trip online common sense prevails. So trust your gut and if it doesn’t seem right give it a pass and keep looking. Here are 5 tips that will stop you from being scammed when booking a vacation online and help you keep your hard earned money!

1. Make Sure the Offer is from a Legitimate Supplier! Scam artists are real good. In fact they can look more professional that the pros! If you click on a banner ad or read a review promoting a particular vacation do your homework. Read through the content as the bad guys will portray themselves as, for example, being from Hilton Hotels. So if it’s a promotion for Hilton, go to their company website or call them to make sure the offer is there. If it’s not, chances are you would have been ripped off.

2. Contact the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Not all companies are household names and yet they most likely have a legitimate offer. It sounds trite, but contact the local BBB of the city the business is located in to see if there are any reports of them. According to the BBB the travel industry is in the top 25 for complaints.

3. Beware of Delayed Reservations. This one is a classic! Make sure you put your purchase on a credit card – no cash and no checks! If you pay by credit card you have 60 days to dispute the charge. So if you are booking a vacation for 3 or 4 months down the road make sure you are sent the reservation within a few days. The scammers will wait to the 61st day or longer to send you the reservation when it’s too late to dispute with your credit card company.

4. Don’t Pay by Check! Once you have the money is gone and if you have a dispute, probably too bad as the supplier has your money!

5. Read the Fine Print. Not sexy and no doubt a bore. But make sure what the salesperson or sales page has promised is not contradicted in the fine print. If it is, get out of the deal or call your credit card company quash it.

Booking a vacation online happens a million times every day without incident. I hope these tips help you to have a great vacation!

Top 10 Holiday Tips For Career Success

Every year as the holidays approach, most jobseekers and career changers make the mistake of halting all their efforts. They believe there is no point in pursuing new opportunities during the holidays, and that nobody is making hiring decisions until January, so “why bother?” Many decide to do absolutely nothing from mid-November to the second or third week in January!

Making these kinds of assumptions about the holidays is, again, a huge mistake!

When it comes to the holidays, I suggest you become a “contrarian” – and do what all the other job seekers are not doing. Since most of them are taking an extended break, this opens up real opportunities for you!

The reality is that the holidays are an excellent time to develop and create new contacts for your job search or career transition. Many companies are completing their budget planning for the next fiscal year. This is often the best time to get in front of hiring managers to create a position for you next year. Many managers have to fill openings early in the year or they may lose the budget for that position. Also, once year-end bonuses are paid, a predictable percentage of employees will leave their jobs, creating new vacancies!

Here are 10 career-savvy tips for the holidays from Ford R. Myers, President of Career Potential, LLC, an executive career consulting firm based in Radnor, PA:


Business is all about establishing relationships – and relationships are developed in social settings! During the holidays, most people are naturally more convivial and generous in spirit. There is simply no better time to solidify existing relationships and forge new ones!


There are many networking events in November and December – in your social life, in your community, and in your professional circles. Think of all the companies having holiday parties. Many charities have their last fundraisers of the tax year in November and December. Book sales, holiday fairs and other celebrations make this the best time of year for productive networking!


Most professional associations have a holiday party for their December meeting, with a more informal atmosphere than the formal presentations held throughout the rest of the year. Do not bring a resume to these events. Create a simple, tasteful business card with your name, phone number and e-mail address. Be prepared to make interesting small talk to establish new contacts. Ask the people you meet about themselves, their work, and their interests. Remember, everyone’s favorite subject is “themselves!”


Prior to a social or networking event, prepare at least three neutral questions you can ask, such as:

* How do you know the host, the company, etc.?

* What made you decide to come to this event?

* What other organizations in this industry do you belong to?

When you find it’s time to move on and talk with someone new, you’ll need some phrases to help you transition during the event. Here are some good “exit lines:”

* I’ll let you go now, so you can continue circulating around the room.

* I’ll stop monopolizing your time so you can meet some other folks.

* It was great speaking with you. I’ll follow up as we discussed.


There are more volunteer opportunities around the holidays than at any other time of year. This is a good way to help other people, feel good when you need a boost, have a renewed sense of purpose during your search, and meet other professionals. Volunteering also gives you something interesting to discuss with the new people you meet!


Use the day after Thanksgiving to make both follow-up calls and cold calls. You’ll find that whoever is at work that day will not only be available for a conversation, but will be grateful to speak to someone! If there are people who you’ve been having a hard time reaching, be sure to take advantage of this unique opportunity.


Pick a seasonal, nondenominational theme – usually a depiction of a winter scene is best. This is the time to send cards to everyone on your “career list,” including executive search firms, Human Resource professionals, and hiring managers with whom you have interacted over the past year. Don’t write about your job search in the card. Send your cards early enough for people to remember to invite you to their holiday get-togethers, and to send you a card in return! Be sure to include your contact information with the card, so the recipient can also reach you.


Remember the old saying popular at this time of year, “Tis better to give than to receive.” This is certainly true when you’re attempting to connect with people during the holidays. The fastest and most effective strategy for getting help is “give to get.” Ask the people in your network if you can be of help to them in any way, or if there is anyone who they might like an introduction to. Become a real “connector,” and in turn, you will become “connected!”


Technology has come a long way. Use the holidays to connect and reconnect with people on business networking web sites, such as, and Connect with local businesspeople in cyberspace and then take your connection “live” with a face-to-face meeting. You can also use these web sites as a great system to follow-up and keep in touch!


At holiday time, some jobseekers tend to become overly negative or cynical during what they perceive as a “lull” in their career transition. Don’t fall into this trap. Get into positive action precisely when others are “giving up” until early next year. Think and speak positively, and you’ll become a magnet – ready to attract, interview, and “hire” your next employer.

If you’re currently in career transition or looking to move-up at your organization, these strategies should give you a new perspective on the holidays! Instead of “taking a vacation” from your career development activities, take full advantage of this overlooked opportunity to make real progress in your quest. Then, you’ll really have something to celebrate!


Permission to Reprint: This article may be reprinted, provided it appears in its entirety with the following attribution: Copyright © 2006, Ford R. Myers and Career Potential, LLC.

Anticipatory Grief and Holidays: 12 Survival Tips

Anticipatory grief – a feeling of loss before a death or dreaded event occurs – is a hard journey. Holidays make it even harder. At a time when you’re supposed to feel happy and joyful, you feel sad and anxious. You’re on pins and needles and wonder what will happen next.

Remember, your grief stems from love, and you may find comfort in that. Holidays don’t erase your reasons for feeling sad and lonely, according to the National Mental Health Association, and “there is room for these feelings to be present.” So accept your feelings and, if you feel like crying, go ahead and do it.

Crying will help you to feel better. Here are some other ways you can help yourself.

BE REALISTIC. You don’t have to create a “perfect” holiday. Do you really need to knit sweaters for everyone? No. Do you really need to serve a six course meal? No. What you need to do is set realistic goals, get organized, and pace yourself. Rather than focusing on one day, the National Mental Health Association recommends focusing on “a season of holiday sentiment.”

ASK FOR HELP. You don’t need to do everything yourself. Family members and friends will be glad to help with planning, decorating, and cooking. One family member could bring a traditional dish, such as pumpkin pie. Another family member could provide linens and launder them afterwards. Your request for help makes others feel needed.

BUDGET. Finances can cause stress at any time, but they cause lots of stress during the holidays. Set a budget for gifts, decorations, and entertaining. Staying within your budget will make you feel better about the holidays and yourself. Your gifts don’t have to be new. Holiays are a perfect time to pass along family possessions – a flower vase, historic photo, or beloved book. Stick a short note about the item in with your gift.

EAT RIGHT. Because nutrition affects brain chemistry, you need to eat balanced meals during the holidays. Yummy as they look, pass up the candy and cookies that come your way. Choose lots of fruits and veggies from the buffet table and one dessert. Keeping a supply of healthy snacks on hand will also help you to eat right.

DRINK MODERATELY. Alcohol makes the holiday blues worse, according to the National Mental Health Association. Too much alcohol can cause you to say things you’ll regret later. If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation or skip it all together. Drink sparkling cider, non-alcoholic punch, or flavored water instead of alcohol.

GET ENOUGH SLEEP. You’ve probably thinking, “Yeah, right.” But you need sleep to survive the holidays. Getting enough sleep is hard to do with so many holiday events going on. However, you may be selective about what you attend, leave early, and get a good night’s sleep. Balance a late night with a short nap the next day.

LIGHT YOUR WAY. Vanerbilt University wellness experts say more people get depressed during the holidays than at any other time. Some of these people have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). If you live in a cold climate and the days are short you may wish to be evaluated for SAD. Phototherapy (intense lighting) is usually recommended for those with SAD. Even if you don’ have SAD well lit rooms will lift your spirits.

EXERCISE. Daily physical activity is a proven way to cope with stress. Walk around town or the local mall and look at holiday decorations. Play catch with your kids or grandkids. Bundle up and go cross country skiing. A half hour of physical activity per day helps to chase the blues away.

BE CONCILATORY. According to family tensions may flare during the holidays if members are “thrust together for several days.” Holidays aren’t the time to settle family disputes, they’re a time for concilatory and kind behavior. Discuss family grievances at a later date.

HELP OTHERS. Holidays are associated with families and togetherness according to Jill RachBeisel, MD, Director of Community Psychiatry at the University of Maryland. But, due to the divorce rate and fragmented families, many don’t have this kind of holiay experience. Still, you may connect with a substitute family by volunteering a a senior center, reading to shut-ins, or tutoring children.

MAKE NEW MEMORIES. The memories you make during this holiday season may comfort you in the future. Take digital photos of holiday events and put them on a CD. Send copies of the CD to all family members. Every family has stories to tell and you may create new memories by tape recording some of these stories. You may also videotape holiday events.

SAVOR THE MOMENT. Though you are sorrowful, you’re alive, able to be with those you love and care about. Surround yourself with life: family members, dear friends, colorful flowers, a tail-wagging dog, and hobbies that make you happy. For every moment of life – even the sorrowful ones – is a miracle.

Copyright 2005 by Harriet Hodgson. To learn more about her work go to

Self Catering Holiday Tips

If you want to go on a self-catering holiday, there are some specific things that you can do to make it better and easier for you. First, you want to make sure what cottages and other arrangements are available where you want to go. If a fancy, full-service hotel is in the same price range most people would want that instead. However, not everyone feels that way. Some people want these self-catering cottages because they can accommodate a lot of people so an entire family or big group of friends can stay together without being split up into a bunch of different hotel rooms. This is rather important for most people. Find out before you book something, how many people it can accommodate and whether you can get it for the time you want for a good rate.


Depending on when during the year you’re planning on taking your holiday, you might find that you can move it by a couple of weeks and get a much lower price because you will have moved into the off season for tourism. If you can go during that off season you can get lower prices and sometimes other added benefits that you wouldn’t be able to get otherwise.


You should also be sure you understand what ‘self catering’ actually means so that you can be prepared for your stay and bring anything that you need to have with you. You don’t want to show up unprepared for your holiday, because you could end up having a bad time. If you have pets that you’ll be bringing (a lot of people like to travel with their dogs, for example) you’ll also need to find out whether they will be welcome there, if you need to pay extra, and if there are any special rules or regulations that go along with bringing a pet on your self-catering holiday. Get those things out in the open so that you don’t have a nasty surprise when you arrive and are expecting to relax. You should also do a little bit of research into the area, so you know where you can go to eat and what you might want to see while you’re on holiday.

What Tourists Should Know Before Going To Puerto Vallarta

If you are in search of a location to vacation in, consider travelling to Puerto Vallarta. This city lies on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, and it is a favorite vacation destination for those who wish to unwind or indulge in a variety of adventures.

Getting there and around

Many visitors ride planes to go to the city. The Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport can be found at the north of the city center and many major US airlines conduct flights to and from the city. From there you can opt to use a taxi cab or hire private transport. Buses are also not hard to come by. Vallarta’s yachts, boats and water taxis can bring you to different gorgeous beaches.

Places to see

Vallarta is considered as one of Mexico’s most beautiful resort destinations. One of the most remarkable areas in the city is the Banderas Bay, which is one of the largest and deepest worldwide. Puerto Vallarta also has a growing number of cultural points of interest. The Museo del Cuale for instance has gorgeous pottery and clay figurines. No trip to the city is complete Jardines Botanicos de Vallarta. This facility houses numerous types of orchids and wild palms, and in there, you may find butterflies and hummingbirds flitting by from time to time. If you just want to rest, Vallarta has miles of sweeping golden sand beaches.

Things to do

The city provides a number of activities and excursions to keep you occupied and delighted. You can try whale and turtle watching, go on nature trips, visit the Sierra Madre, and experience many aquatic sports. If you’re up for it, the city is also offers canopy walks and zip lines. There are also many dining and shopping establishments to visit. Different options to rest are also readily accessible. Spas, for instance, are a fixture in many locations in the city.

Accommodation options

Accommodation facilities in Vallarta vary from well-known international hotel chains to more economical bed and breakfasts. For extended stays, you can also select from the city’s condominiums and apartment villas. Many of these accommodation facilities can be reserved on the internet.

The best time to visit

Peak season is December through April so count on seeing more expensive accommodation fees during that part of the year. The perfect time to go to Vallarta is between late June and October when hotel fees drop up to 40% and there are fewer people to compete with for various tourist services..

Accepted currency

Most establishments in the city accept US dollars as readily as they take the local Peso. Understand though that the exchange rates available at money changers are less favorable than what are available from the banks.

Tips for Buying Small Travel Bags

People who travel often develop a strong view on the type of travel bags that best suit their needs.Buying a new travel bags is easy. Here are some tips for buying the perfect small travel bag.

Generally there are two broad sizes of bags used by travelers – small luggage and larger suitcases.

Small luggage comes in many shapes

Business travel is often short-term. Hence the luggage design reflects the needs to carry papers, laptops and personal items needed for an overnight business trip.

For casual and outdoor trips select a backpack. Backpacks work for people who prefer to travel light. A small backpack should carry everything needed for the entire trip whether it is camping or any other type of short trip.

The design of carry-on luggage gives the best options for travelers on flights or bus tours. Airlines specify the maximum dimensions and in recent times, the staff confirm suitable bags at check-in. This specification allows the bags to fit in the overhead compartment of the plane or underneath your seat.

Totes and casual bags are for the person seeking for a travel bag that can carry a day’s outdoor needs. Most of these types of bag designers have fashion in their minds all the while attempting not to compromise the practicality of the item.

Garment bags and carriers are specialist bags for carrying dresses, suits or clothes on hangers.

Bags have accessories to improve their usefulness. Here are a few accessories that improve bags for traveling.

Locks are often attached to the bag. However, they can be added to the zippers or appropriate places, if required. Keyed locks and combination locks are available for most cases.

Luggage tags are essential.They help you find your bag when collecting from carousel and other places.

Many modern bags incorporate carts allowing easy wheeling, instead of carrying.

Other considerations.

Hardware. Ideal luggage should have straps, handles in different sides, and compartments to hold your clothes in place and to prevent wrinkles. Recessed handles generally last longer.

Bag fabric varies with polyester, leather, and nylon being the most common. Choose one with higher “denier” to assure durability. The higher the number the more durable the material. Fabric type determines the price of travel bags. Hard cases are also becoming popular.

If you can chose the zipper,choose large zippers because they usually outlast smaller ones.

A rigid bag frame is recommended to ensure the bag remains sturdy. Materials such as fiberglass, durable plastic, and aluminum provide luggage excellent frames

Small travel bags vary greatly in price. If you are a frequent traveller a more expensive travel bag will serve you well.