28 February 2009

travel smart, travel light

At KidsTravelHappy.com we are always looking for sites that compliment the products, and information we provide. We feel as though JetSetBabies is one of those sites.

All the new airline baggage fees got you down? Not sure how that little baby of yours could require SO much gear? Save money by shipping your baby supplies directly to your destination, and let JetSetBabies be your resource for this service. JetSetBabies will help you discover how travel with an infant doesn't have to be a chore, and this service will prove luxurious!

JetSetBabies has shipped baby products to hundreds of hotels world-wide, and they are familiar with many of the hotel's procedures, and thus can prevent issues before they happen. JetSetBabies has partnerships to help provide baby supplies to international locations such as the UK, Italy , Greece, Spain, France and Portugal.

Visit their website for more info, it will save you time, money, and make you that much more efficient in transit.

Not going anywhere? JetSetBabies will also do home delivery of your favorite baby products.
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20 February 2009

Travel Toy? Collectible? One never knows!

A month or so ago, we received an order from the Netherlands for a very specific ROBOT mini-pinball (back row in the above photo) from Schylling toys. This item is usually sold assorted (and we happily take requests, but we don't always have the same mix as the stock photos we receive!) The customer was quite adamant that the choice HAD to be the ROBOT, there was not other one she was interested in. Thankfully, we had plenty. The customer's second concern was that the minimum shipping cost was $6.95 for her $1.99 item, which was NOT going overseas from Maine, but to California.

A few emails later, we worked out a total of about $4 for the order (including the actual shipping charges for this small, light item), and off it went to California.

Recently, we received another email from the pinball customer, as well as a photo of the Robot Pinball in it's new home.
Can you spot the game? We thought this was great and just had to share. One never knows where our initially intended as a "travel activity" will end up. We do know, however, that the little Robot has a much grander life than it did in the 'assorted' box, and is probably 'traveling happy on its imaginary journeys' with its display companions!

Thanks again to our new friends from the Netherlands, and their excellent 'collection'.

Have a cool photo of one of our products, in a home or on a 'big' travel adventure? We'd love to hear about it, and maybe your story will be the next one in our BLOG!
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12 February 2009

NileGuide - Get Personalized Travel Recommendations

We think this is a REALLY cool, unique, useful website, especially for those wanting to plan a family trip, and get all the details squared away pre-trip.

As stated from Nicole of NileGuide "NileGuide is a do-it-yourself trip planning website that enables you to research and create a customized guidebook for your trip. Once you choose a destination, you can research restaurants, lodging, nightlife, and things to do and see by clicking on the "food", "lodging", "nightlife" and "see & do" tabs under the large DISCOVER tab a the top of the page. Our site can be particularly useful for families who travel. Using the personal filtering tools in the preferences section of each search page, you can check the 'kid friendly' box to display family friendly activities, restaurants, and lodging in the area."

Nicole further explains "when you see an activity of interest to you, simply click on the "+" symbol in order to add it to your trip. Once you are done researching your trip, click on "Plan your Trip" tab to organize activities in your itinerary, and create your own custom guidebook. Plus, you can share and collaborate on your trip with other friends and family."

How cool is that?! Brilliant in our opinion! With destinations in the U.S., and around the world, there is 'local' expertise from all over. Each 'trip building' area has some excellent overviews and brief histories of each area, photos and more. It's fun just to "PRETEND" to get ready for a trip!

Best part? This is a FREE service, part of a 'stimulus' travel bill so to speak.

Where next... Maui, Sedona, Cape Town, Shanghai, Sydney, Whistler, Prague, Cancun????

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05 February 2009

Let the Kids have a MAP!

Whether it's on the road, on a train, or in the air, giving a child perspective on the scale of the world (or town, or region) is a great way to keep them entertained. We are AAA members, and never miss out on an opportunity to get all the TripTiks, and individualized directions for our trips (especially road trips). With multiple types of maps of various scales, there's bound to be one that fits the developmental age (or range of ages) of your kid or kids.

Other ideas/Map Resources include:
* Google Maps - street maps, satellite maps, terrain maps, LOTS of options
* Expedia Maps
* Feeling Crafty? laminate a map (from above links, or also see more below) with the route highlighted, and let child put stickers on certain 'milestones', this can be done on more detailed for road trips, or less detail (more distance covered more quickly) for plane trips.
* Road Trip? Tape the map on the ceiling of the car where it's easily accessible and explainable for all!
* Flying? Print out a copy of each 'layover' airport (and start and ending airports, especially if there are NO layovers - lucky you!), and have an older child help figure out where you're coming into the airport, where the gate is, where to get a snack etc... (it's like a treasure hunt of sorts!)
Train Travel?
Other things to mark on Maps (these can even just be of your city/town)
  • Your/the child's favorite spots, school, day care, grocery store, post office, etc.
  • Relative's and/or Friend's homes
  • Mileage/Time (and compare it to something they are familiar with, for example, "the first flight will take as long as it takes to ride your bike at the park to the bridge and back", or "we will stop for a bathroom break after we've driven the distance it takes to get to Grandma's house" etc..)
  • Cool stuff to see along the way
  • State or Country Capitals
  • Meal breaks
  • State/Country borders
  • Use your imagination, kids will love playing a part in the journey getting there
Your kids will be learning map reading skills without even realizing.
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