Here are 10 tips to make sure that ‘things will go right’ for you in your next trip.
Learn how to use a two-dimensional map.
Get one from the front desk of your hotel and use it to find your way around. You will not be able to see the map on your smart phone anyways in sunny weather.
Prior to your trip
Prior to your trip, spend some time everyday to check where in your itinerary you can get tickets ahead of time for the sites you want to see.
Use our TripScripts®-
You can find out how to use it by signing up for our in-depth Master Class coming this winter.
Book with a small tour operator.
There are many online. You can also join us at www.theoliveodysseys.com.
Stay in hotels—
I know there are many sites that rent out houses and beds. I have used those. I can say, use them only if you will be staying in one place for at least
five days. You have no owner to ask questions of—because they are usually far away. Getting and returning the keys can be a time suck. Plus except in rare cases of bad staffing, a hotel desk clerk is a wealth of information. Not to mention help in the case of a crisis or emergency.
Think twice about car rentals and try to use public transport or private drivers when possible. Just think of the poor sucker who has to be the designated driver during your Bordeaux, France trip.
Think about becoming a tour leader, running your own tours.
We are sharing our knowledge to a few stellar people this Winter. This is a limited Master class.
Heads up !!
look around you and be kind, especially to the person behind the desk. Whether that is the counter at the check in, at the hotel or the train station.
Look them straight in the eye, refrain from being on your phone and talk in simple sentences. Say ‘hello’ to them in their own language. They will wait on hundreds of you, maybe even in that same day.
Do not think that waiters have to be smiley and happy.
You will not be greeted with a pasted on smile and a “Hello my name is Serge and I’ll be your waiter.”
Most waiters are lifers. They will wait on hundreds of you, for sure in that same day.
It is not always wise to try something new.
I am astounded at people that fly overseas, enter a new country and then assume they have gained superhuman powers. Something that they have never tried at home they decide they are going to do it once they hit the ground. Whitewater kayaking? Yeah. Riding a motor scooter?
Never done it at home, but why not on the streets of Santorini where I can mix it up with buses on narrow roads with no shoulders? Sounds like a great idea. Or how about that Segway ride? Sure I have never been on one ever, and I am a little jetlagged, but hey no one knows me here so why not?
Please think ahead. If you want to do a Segway ride through the streets of Granada, Spain then by all mean practice before you go. If you have a scooter or Vespa at home and you feel confident in the dense traffic of Rome then by all means, go for it.
I am all for getting out of your comfort zone—trying a new dish or climbing up the bell tower (slowly) of the Duomo in Florence. But I have seen and heard of too many people being laid-up and wasting days of precious vacation because they thought they were bulletproof.
Slow ‘er down.