Lots of airports are a whole lot of fun during the Christmas season. Sure, some offer local entertainment, but others go a whole lot further. Munich Airport, for example, opens a seasonal Christmas Market, complete with 2 ice rinks and nearly 500 real trees. But frankly, I think Singapore’s Changi Airport may have them all beat this year, because they’ve brought The Wizarding World of Harry Potter into THREE of its terminals, with what they call “A Wizarding World Holiday at Changi.”
When Sharon and I traveled to Austria, we flew from London and had a connection in Berlin before heading to Salzburg. I’ve been on international connecting flights before so I was expecting to “transit” in Germany, meaning I wouldn’t go through immigration control until we arrived in Austria. I was a bit surprised that the immigration booth was at the end of the jetway, before we could even enter the terminal. There was one line for EU and Schengen passengers and another line for everyone else. I had no idea what Schengen is but I knew it wasn’t me. I later found out that this is why we didn’t have to go through passport control when arriving in Austria, which was a bummer as we really wanted that passport stamp.
So what does Schengen mean anyway?
Ever since the transatlantic aircraft plot in 2006, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has been enforcing what is known as “3-1-1 for carry-ons,” wherein travelers are allowed to carry liquids through security checkpoints in containers of 3.4 ounces (100 mL) or less that fit comfortably in one quart-size clear plastic zip-top bag.
It is, in a word, a pain. At least it is for me, because my personal rule of packing is to make sure I have everything I would need for 24-48 hours, and that includes sample/small sizes of all the “essential” liquids and gels I would need. Here’s what that usually includes:
It BARELY all fits, even when I put everything into the bag like if it was a Tetris game.
Oh, and if we’re going somewhere cold, add a tube of Carmex and a small bottle of hand lotion to that bag (and to make it all fit, I remove the asthma inhaler, since it’s medication and doesn’t have to be in my 3-1-1 bag; I just prefer that it is, so I always know where to find it).
Anyway, I recently discovered a few items that might be able to help decrease the liquids in many peoples’ 3-1-1 bags…
I’m almost finished with meeting the spending requirement for the last credit card we were approved for, so that means it’s time to find and apply for a new card. As always, you should not be bothering with this if you have credit card debt. If that’s the case, your main goal should be to pay off the debt and increase your credit score, and THEN you can start applying for credit cards.
When applying for credit cards, it’s important to know the rules that you’ll need to follow for each bank when applying for a credit card, because they’re all different. Knowing these rules will allow you to continue to get approved for cards and collect the bonuses that will add to your balances. That, in turn, will allow you to meet your travel goals.
I’m going to stick to the “major” banks that issue reward cards (American Express, Citibank, and Chase and Barclays) because they are the ones you’ll be dealing with most of the time.
Continue reading “The Confusing Rules When Applying For Reward Credit Cards”
When we see travel deals, we always want to spread the word. So as we see them, we make sure to let you know. They run the gamut from hotels to flights to points to miles to car rentals and even stuff you need while you’ll traveling, like equipment, Uber discounts, theme park tickets, food for when you’re on the road, etc.
Heads up that some of these deals might be really limited in time or amount, or some could go on for days or longer. Some deals might be good for some people and not so much for others. There may be better deals out there and we just don’t know about them. We take no responsibility for any transaction you may or may not do; we’re just telling you what’s we’ve seen that’s out there at that very moment and it’s up to you to decide if it’s something useful, beneficial and worth it for you, and if you can take advantage of it before it’s too late.
Here’s what’s out there right now: