Greetings! Thanks for stopping in today. I’ve been a bit absent of late from the blog, having been overwhelmed by wedding prep, and since the big day, traveling a bit. Thus, I’ve had little time for blogging. But in planning a recent trip to South Florida, and working on an upcoming trip to the east coast for the holidays, I’m reminded that as a seasoned traveler, I’ve got lots of travel secrets to share. So today, with travel top-of-the-mind, I thought I’d share my 5 Best Kept Travel Secrets with you, my loyal followers. So here we go…

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

#1 Keep Your Travel Browsing Top Secret

What I’m about to tell you right now is the best travel tip I’ve uncovered in a long time. You know how websites collect what are called “cookies” from your browser? Well, if you’re like me and spend a lot of time searching for the cheapest flights online, then you need to hear this!   After you have searched a few times for a particular route the airlines pick up on that by collecting cookies from your browser. Then guess what they do: RAISE THE PRICE! This is done in order to prompt you to hurry up and purchase the flight, for fear that the price will continue to go up. SOUND FAMILIAR? I know it’s happened to me numerous times until I learned how to search for flights “incognito”. Here’s how you do it…

If you use Google Chrome (like me) or Safari you can search incognito (privately) by hitting Command (or “Control” if using PC), then hit Shift,  then hit “N”. Keep your fingers on all 3 keys at once as you do this. If your internet browser is Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer, hit Command (or “Control” if using a PC), then Shift, then “P”. In doing this your computer will open a new browser window where your browsing cannot be tracked. Thus, the airlines won’t artificially inflate flight prices as you search.

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

#2 Buy Travel Insurance

You’ve been dreaming about a holiday, the perfect break, the dream trip, and think, what could go wrong? The truth is, on holiday, things often do. Perhaps the airline loses your luggage, or you’re unlucky enough to get injured or become sick. Either way, I’ve found that taking the time to choose the best travel insurance is a worthwhile investment.

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Ever since my friend Julia had a stroke on a cruise ship off the coast of Poland I’ve made it a habit to buy really good travel insurance. Julia had insurance that helped pay to medevac her by helicopter off the ship to a much-less-than-acceptable Polish hospital. But she soon found out that her travel insurance would not fly her home to the US where she could get much better care. That’s because the insurance policy she bought said that since a Polish hospital was available to her there, she could be treated without returning home. Read the fine print folks and make sure your insurance does what you expect it to.

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Photo by Tim Dennert on Unsplash

Julia will tell you that travel insurance can be a lifesaver provided you take the time to find the right policy. Taking into account all the various exclusions, making the decision to buy insurance when heading abroad can save you insurmountable costs. Research your options and think hard before you forego insurance; it’s a small price to pay for peace of mind!

Photo by Erik Kroon on Unsplash

#3 Prepare An Itinerary

I am one of the most organized travelers you will ever meet. Perhaps because my memory isn’t the greatest anymore, but also because I don’t want to miss a thing or overlook something special, so I research, plan, research, plan and plan some more. And as I plan I add every detail to an itinerary that I develop for every single trip I take using the  TripIt App. Using TripIt allows me to store every reservation I make in one place. I simply forward all of my hotel, flight, car rental, and restaurant confirmation emails to plans@tripit.com. TripIt automagically transforms those emails into a master itinerary for my trip and adds everything to my Google Calendar as well. Then I can access it on my phone or laptop at anytime, even when I’m offline. Plus it will email me reminders to check into flights, warn me of delays or cancellations and much more.

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Photo by Domenico Loia on Unsplash

#4 Book Everything In Advance

As I said, I’m a planner and I’ve learned that with so many people from all around the globe doing more and more traveling, it’s often difficult to get reservations at the places I’ve discovered I want to visit. Last minute bookings are a thing of the past, especially when booking airline travel in an age of very full flights. Also, because I cook so much when I’m at home, it’s the last thing I wish to do when I’m on holiday. So, I always research where to eat in each city and book those reservations immediately. By the way, I read recently that 60% of travelers gain around 4 1/2 pounds while on holiday!  Well, if that’s going to happen, I’d rather gain it in Michelin style by booking in advance and securing a table at my preferred restaurants. I wouldn’t want to miss out on a unique opportunity or waste a meal on anything less than a perfect one, one that’s worth every calorie.

5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Photo by Dominic Dreier on Unsplash

#5 Every Other Great Tip I Can Think Of

Oh my gosh, there are so many things I have learned about booking travel that have saved me money and effort that I could go on forever. But let me quickly tell you a few things that come to mind with respect to booking airline travel.


  • When searching for the cheapest flights I first go to Kayak.com and enter the preferred city I’m flying out of and into.
  • I then check off the box for a One Way flight. This will allow me to book my outbound and inbound flights with the cheapest airline for that particular route.
  • I then check the box for Flexible Dates, as I want to see which are the cheapest days to fly that route.
  • I also check the box for Flexibility for Nearby Airports. While I may not be flying out of the nearest airport, the savings might make it worthwhile for me to drive to another nearby airport.
  • Then I make a list of all the airlines that pop up in my kayak.com search. I see who is the cheapest, who has the preferred times I wish to fly, and which airports appear to have the best prices.
  • I then go to the airlines website and book my preferred flights directly with the airline. I almost always get the best price by going direct.

These are just a few of the travel secrets I would recommend to anyone who is looking for a fulfilling and satisfying travel adventure. If you think of anything I’ve missed that works for you, please do share them by leaving a comment below.

So there you have it: 5 BEST KEPT TRAVEL SECRETS

Thanks so much for dropping in! 

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This is a collaborative post but all opinions expressed are my very own. Unless otherwise noted, all photos are the original property of Celia Becker @ www.AfterOrangeCounty.com and may not be reproduced without specific permission.