When we were working, our vacation destinations were highly predictable – anywhere in the US or the Islands that could be reached within two to four hours by plane. Typically we chose a resort in the Caribbean, a ski village in Colorado or a visit to Mickey’s house in Orlando. We could never be away for more than nine days (constraints of business ownership) so it was important not to use precious time getting there. We also did not have the luxury of time to plan and execute a vacation that included multiple destinations and intricate details. Vacations were expressly for relaxing and having family fun, which meant one destination, one hotel and built-in activities. Everything changed when we sold our business and retired.
For the first time in our lives, we could go beyond a one week vacation and really travel. We took our first trip abroad when our daughter was sixteen and on summer vacation. That was the beginning of a love affair that will never fade. Malcolm took months to arrange travel plans that included planes, trains, automobiles and several hotel reservations. We traveled for a month throughout France and Italy and packed our bags for departure every fourth day. It was an ambitious and aggressive trip. He made some rookie mistakes, but we had one of the most memorable trips of our lives, and we learned how to travel.
Since that trip, Malcolm has become “travel agent extraordinaire” with more than six trips abroad, numerous cruise/land vacations and countless stateside adventures. I trust him to take us anywhere in the world – seamlessly. Whether it’s Amtrak across America or a series of trains across Eastern Europe, he makes it seem effortless. Which of course, it is not.
It takes patience, time and an ability to stay organized. Not everyone has the luxury of time to devote to the process, but when you do, you can create an experience that is tailored specifically to your expectations. Sure, you can hire a travel agency and there are a lot of very good ones out there like Gate1Travel and Tauck Tours, but our experience has been that it is possible to save literally thousands of dollars by doing it ourselves. You just have to be willing to do the work.
Seat61 for train travel
Trip Insurance.com – this one is obvious
Vacations to Go – cruises
Hotwire.com – for accommodations
Trip Advisor – user reviews of hotels, restaurants, things to do
Sits down with The Two Doctors and .....
Enjoying life and the empty nest while easing into retirement,
A Life Less Ordinary
More Daddy Fool Than Daddy Cool
Travel snapshots from Toonsarah
Tales, Thoughts + Tribulations of a Free Spirit in Suburbia
“A good snapshot keeps a moment from running away.” ― Eudora Welty
Our Next Chapter
I'm nothing if not resilient
Having fun, while encouraging, and promoting bloggers
Keeping Life Simple, Authentic And Holistic
The Joy of Slow Travel
Adventures and Postcards from the road
Come along on an adventure with us!
Mainly through the lens of a Nikon
The Beach Girl Chronicles
envisioning & implementing life's next stage
Read this, not that!
Lifestyle, Photography and Traditional Art
Giving and Receiving Blessings
by Susanne Fletcher
...but change is certain.
Midlife traveller (without the crisis)
capturing memories one moment at a time
Navigating retirement as an introvert
Random Ramblings and Reviews from Trent P. McDonald
People, Places, Nature, LIFE!
A Canadian Perspective on Living in the Windy City!
Little treasures discovered while exploring the back roads of life
Running and life: thoughts from a runner who has been around the block
Author, Baker, Sunrise Chaser
Creative Exploration in Words and Pictures
Encouraging women in their fifties to live in a meaningful way
Suzanne's Life and Travel Musings from New Zealand and Beyond
A man with dyslexia writing about this and that and everything else!
Serenity is an Inside Job
A Midlife Journey
Food and More
Valuing quiet and solitude in academe.
"This blog is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get." - F.G.
Taking steps to live a healthy and enriched life
Writing Stories of Love, Faith and Happy Endings While Enjoying the Journey
Grateful for the present moment
Building a community of Women Living Well and embracing life after 50
"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day." 2 Corinthians 4:16
Travel - home and away and Chronic Illness's
Living in Retirement