A Great Cruise Planning Guide and my take on DIY Travel Planning

Great thought-provoking and informative article on planning a #Cruise: The Everything Guide to Planning a Cruise

As I’m reading through this Cruise Guide on HuffPost Travel, I pause at the “How should I book my cruise” paragraph to reflect, as I usually do whenever reading “Why-you-really-need-a-Travel-Agent” type opinions and discussions on the net.  So, I just want to take a few minutes here to reiterate this point; unless DIY #Travel planning is your passion and/or you have lot’s of time on your hands for comparison #Cruise shopping, I highly suggest that you contact a professional Travel Consultant to book your cruise and other travel arrangements for you.  This needs to be someone you get to know on a 1st name basis, a reliable person who is going to be available for you, should you need them, before, during and after your trip.  And, if you are one of those who believe that they can find better pricing than a professional can, :-/ well, maybe you can but have you heard of “Price Matching”?  Many Travel professionals like myself work with booking affiliates that are very willing to match prices “apples to apples” for the exact same package you found quoted lower elsewhere.  Communication is everything, you just need to ask BEFORE you book your reservations.

Ask Your Travel Agent about Price Matching BEFORE you book it!

Ask Your Travel Agent about Price Matching BEFORE you book it!

My question to you is this, is your upcoming travel really all about the price and how “cheap” you can get it? Does having a service professional with their finger on the trigger who is ready, willing, trained and capable to assist you with your Travel related needs whenever you need them not mean anything to you?  Remember, you get what you pay for.

Just as you have established professional relationships with your Doctor, Dentist, Lawyer, Accountant, Hair stylist and/or Barber who specialize in a specific field and function, so should you have one with a Travel Agent/Advisor/Coordinator.  Establishing a solid relationship with a trusted, living, breathing Travel professional before you Travel is just like having insurance; It’s best to have it and not need it, then to need it while you’re out and about in this world and not have it”.

Keep Calm and Call Your Travel Agent,...if you have one!

Keep Calm and Call Your Travel Agent,…if you have one!

When and if the #$h!t hits the fan (and it often times does before or during your trip), you can’t keep calm and call your Travel Agent unless you already have one!  Why travel around this world without a professional support network when it doesn’t cost you anything more to have one in place before you go?  All you need to do is let YOUR Travel Professional handle your reservations for you.  Think about it! – #NCTina -aka_ #TLCTravelS

Additional Read: Why it Pays to Book With a Travel Agent

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When Life Gets Down to “Bucket List” Traveling Time

Such an unfortunate and sad situation for Brittany Maynard and her family to endure right now.  November 1 is just 4 days away as this is the date choosen by this young 29 year old wife and daughter who is being agressively attacked by Cancer to die with dignity.  I’m keeping them all in Prayer for comfort and Peace as they continue toward the very difficult days ahead.

Brittany Maynard and her family tick off the last item on her "Bucket List",...the Grand Canyon.

Brittany Maynard and her family tick off the last item on her “Bucket List”,…the Grand Canyon.

“My dream is that every terminally ill American has access to the choice to die on their own terms with dignity,” -via- Brittany Maynard ticks off last item on bucket list – CNN.com.  I whole-heartedly agree with you Brittany.  May your mind, body and Spirit find rest and comfort as you sleep in eternal PEACE, free from this sickness and pain. – TLC

11/2/14 Update: Brittany has decided to postpone her originally planned to die date of November 1st. Read more about young Brittany Maynard here: Brittany Maynard Could Revive the Stalled ‘Death With Dignity’ Movement

11/4/2014 Update: After several news reports last Friday night- 10/31/14, stating that Brittany had decided to postpone her original 11/1/14 date to die, it has now been confirmed that she actually did not postpone it. Condolences to her family.

Rest in Peace Brittany Maynard. –  Death with Dignity advocate dies at 29yrs old.

Yes, Please, Let’s Not Overlook The Importance of Traveling With Your Kids!

As much as I’ve already shouted from the rooftops, “#Plan2Travel”, I have also been a constant advocate to #Travel with your kids while they are young, mentally developing and learning how to be in this world.  I have also mentioned on several occasions that, I believe, Travel to be one of the best forms of education for anyone but especially a young impressionable mind. Whether it be to places near or far, my thoughts still remain the same on this issue: “Make Plans To Travel With Your Kids, While They Are Kids” is a memorable benefit to their upbringing that should not be missed!

As we approach another Holiday Season which will undoubtedly, yet again, be filled with an over indulgence of materialist spending, “show-boating” and nauseating urges to “keep up with the Joneses”, might I suggest that you try something different, more meaningful; Invest in long-lasting memories of happiness from travel experiences instead of pissing your money away on “stuff”.  Your future adult children will be so Thankful you did! – NCTina -aka- TLC

“Experiences matter more than material things. Here’s why – and how moms and dads can bank more moments that are rich rewards for you and your kids.”

via How Families Can Invest in Happiness Vs. Stuff.

 

Invest in memories of

“The idea of treasuring experiences over gifts is a lesson Buckley is trying to teach her kids.”

TLC Travels’ Tours & Cruises!

 

 

If You Knew Just How Short Your Life Is Going To Be, ……?

My question to you is: “If you knew just how short your life is going to be, would you make plans to #Travel?” This question was  prompted by a similar sentiment posted on a Tweet I read before going to bed last night.

I thought about this question again, 1st thing this morning upon waking and continue to ponder my answer as this day goes on.  Let’s not, for a minute or three, even take into the always important consideration of; if lack of money were not an object, how would you proceed with what you now know to be the remaining time left of your life?  What would you begin to do differently?  Where and what makes for the contents on your “bucket list”?  For me, the obvious goal would be to #Travel more and as often as possible. Maybe not the entire world but I want to make sure I visit places unknown to my five senses and a few other destinations I really feel a #Spiritual calling to revisit before I close my eyes that final time.  One said place is #Jamaica! I need to do this again a few more times before this life is done!

So, the original question still stands for your reflection: “How short would your life have to be to start living differently right now?”  Think about it for a while.  I’ll wait! 😉

TLC’s “Ladies Days” Jamaica Getaway 2015 and You Are Invited!  TLC Travels’ Tours & Cruises!

The Blame Game….

Change – “We are taught you must blame your father, your sisters, your brothers, the school, the teachers – but never blame yourself. It’s never your fault. But it’s always your fault, because if you wanted to change you’re the one who has got to change.” ― Katharine Hepburn

Let’s stop the blame game and accept responsibility for what happens to us and what doesn’t as adults! Good Morning Wednesday!!!

THE UNSUNG HEROES IN OUR MIDST. THESE ARE MY “MASHUJAAS”

As we begin another week, here are some thoughts from another blogger worth reading as we evaluate who, what and why are we calling our “Heroes” , Hero! Narcissists and materialistic types can miss this post, you probably won’t get it but,…. I’m hoping you do! #PEACE

BIRD'S EYE VIEW

wpid-mama-mboga-kilome

Sometimes inspiration doesn’t come from those who “have made it” really big in life, with accounts reading like phone numbers (starting with the + sign of the number), – if making lots of money is to be counted as success at all; and, those who have climbed up the ladders of their careers, probably through not very straight methods. But real inspiration might come from the groceries woman who, in spite of having gone to bed at 11.00 pm, wakes up at 2.00 am in the morning, takes a bus to the city market to pick her merchandise and by 5.00 am she is back in the house. Instead of going back to bed for a couple of hours, she starts preparing her children for school and by the time they leave for school, it is time to open her grocery where she has to stay the whole day selling…

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Try Myrtle Beach in The Fall!

Just returned from a relaxing 4 day visit with Hubby and our two teens at Myrtle Beach, SC.  It’s been at least 4 years since our last visit so we decided to get in some end of the Summer family time at a destination not too far from our central NC home.  With only a 3.5 hr driving time from our corner of the world, Myrtle Beach was an easy, last-minute decision for us as we wanted something to do with this 2nd into 3rd week of October being Fall Break at the Community College where my son takes classes.

Families looking for an inexpensive beach getaway can certainly find all of the comforts of home at Ocean Reef Resort in Myrtle Beach.  I jumped on a great 35% off “Sunday Super Saver” Fall offer for one of their 3 bedroom angle units located in the South Tower!  I must say, we couldn’t be happier or more comfortable with the recently renovated, full kitchen amenities condo that we were assigned to on the 8th floor.  These angle unit, double balcony, 2 bathroom suites also come equipped with a Washer and Dryer which is a huge benefit for guests planning longer stays.  Another added plus is the on site buffet breakfast at $9.99 per person for those mornings that you just don’t feel like cooking (and I had a couple).  Hope you get Maggie as your waitress, she really is one of the best, very friendly and courteous.  Good Customer Service practices seems to be a dying life skill so #Thanks Maggie for keeping it alive!! We appreciated your professional kindness!

Being a Travel Professional, I am always looking to promote destinations and properties that I deem worthy of consideration for travelers and the Ocean Reef gets my vote.  Although the majority of reviews I read for Ocean Reef were positive, there were a few that were not,… which made me a little uncomfortable.  I knew that I had to go see and visit for myself to get the true picture.  A very important thing I have learned in my 20+ years in the Travel industry is that “different strokes for different folks” is a true statement of fact for travelers as well.  For the dissatisfied folks that are accustomed to a higher or more luxurious level of accommodation, sorry to know that you didn’t enjoy your time here but to the majority of other guests who came, experienced and plan on returning because they made it a point to #Enjoy the Ocean Reef Resort,… I’m right there with you!  This family friendly resort in Myrtle Beach, SC has officially been added to my recommendation list for group travel consideration. ~ TLC TravelS’ Tours & Cruises!

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Checking out the Banana Boat Lounge at Ocean Reef, including those #NACHOS!! 😉

Visit our Photo Blog for more pics of Ocean Reef Resort in Myrtle Beach, SC.

TLC Travels Tours & Cruises in Myrtle Beach

Oh, the life of a Travel Professional

Apparently, many have already discovered Ocean Reef Resort and have been returning for years.  Lots of Senior Couples can be seen enjoying their retirement life here (actually, all around Myrtle Beach) this time of the year.  To find out more about Myrtle Beach, SC and what all there is to do there, go to: Visit, Myrtle Beach!

TLC Travels’ Tours and Cruises!