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Helpful Hints For Older Voyagers

(NAPSI)-Whether your next trip abroad is delightful or disastrous could depend on following these 10 tips:

1. Make multiple copies of passports and any visas needed for the trip. Keep one set with you in a separate location from the original. Give another set to a family member or friend at home.

2. Consult with your primary physician to discuss any medical needs, new treatments or required alterations in medical care that may be necessary based on your itinerary.

3. If you’re taking any type of medication, print and carry with you a list of medicines you take, along with doses and frequency of use. List both the brand and generic names. Also, print and carry with you a list of your medical problems and diagnoses with details furnished by your primary medical doctor.

4. Be sure you have an adequate supply of prescription and nonprescription medications and carry them and any other medical necessities with you in a carry-on bag on a plane flight. Don’t put medications or equipment in baggage that is not immediately accessible to you at all times.

5. Ask your doctor about taking a low-dose aspirin daily during periods of prolonged immobility, such as a plane flight or train trip.

6. Review in advance, with your travel agent and your doctor, medical locations and personnel at your destination should an unanticipated medical event occur.

7. For remote destinations, consider the need for additional vaccinations or other preventative measures.

8. Remember, medical services and even insurance coverage may vary significantly depending on your travel destination. Before you leave, contact your insurance company to learn about benefits available overseas. Check specifically for pre-existing condition exclusions and medical transportation benefits. Explore travel insurance if your primary health coverage is insufficient. One company many older travelers rely on is Mondial Assistance, a global leader in specialty insurance and emergency assistance services best known in the U.S. for its Access America brand of travel insurance. As with any insurance, review your travel insurance coverage carefully to be sure it suits your needs.

9. Medical evacuations can run in the tens of thousands of dollars. Consider supplemental travel insurance designed to address this type of emergency.

10. Confirm with your insurance company what services are available overseas. Confirm the number to call in the event of an emergency.

Learn More

For more information, visit www.AccessAmerica.com.

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Seasonal Timeshare Touches

(NAPSI)-Millions of Americans travel to celebrate the holidays with friends and families-and those who stay in timeshare resorts may find special seasonal touches that make it feel more like home.

According to the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), timeshare resorts are rolling out sleighs and cooking up turkeys to help guests make memories.

Guests at Breckenridge Grand Vacations in Colorado will find their units fully decorated and already stocked with groceries.

The holiday gingerbread theme at the Scottsdale Camelback Resort can be seen in the decorations, as well as the activities such as the gingerbread house-building contest.

Orange Lake Resorts in Orlando offers an oversized gingerbread house setting for family photos and guests can order a full holiday meal. Holiday Inn Club members can use their points to see the world-famous Trans-Siberian Orchestra. And there is always an array of activities at nearby Disney resorts.

For more information, visit www.VacationBetter.org.

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Miles And Miles Of Snowmobiling Fun

(NAPSI)-With abundant snowfall and more than 25,000 miles of trails weaving through forests, lakes, fields and villages, Wisconsin’s snowmobile trail system is the envy of other states and Canadian provinces.

The Wisconsin Department of Tourism offers tips on the ideal snowmobiling experience, including trails and places to stop for comfort food and rest up following a satisfying day on the trail. Details and an up-to-the-minute snow conditions report can be found on TravelWisconsin.com. Subscribe to have it delivered to your e-mail in-box in time to make your weekend plans.

Eagle River: Officially registered as “The Snowmobile Capital of the World,” the area has five snowmobile clubs that groom 600 miles of trails daily. These trails weave through Vilas and Oneida Counties, the Nicolet National Forest and around 2,400 lakes.

The city’s annual ice castle creation is an icy architectural wonder that has changed in design every year since it was first built in 1927. It’s built by a team of volunteers who put in more than 700 man-hours to cut nearly 3,000 ice blocks from a local lake.

For more information, call 800-359-6315; visit www.eagleriver.org.

Three Lakes: Lit by antique-inspired lampposts and lined with little gift shops and restaurants, the downtown area has an old-fashioned charm to it.

The Northern Lights Snowmobile Club holds overnight rides, on-trail weenie roasts, bonfires and weekly club rides. There’s also the Three Lakes Vintage Enduro Snowmobile Race on Spirit Lake, the Three Lakes Winery, where the first cranberry wine was made, and the Northwoods Petroleum Museum, where admission is free.

For more information, call 800-972-6103; visit www.threelakes.com.

Minocqua: One of the area’s favorite trails is the Bearskin State Trail that stretches 18 miles through the forests of Oneida County. The area also has more than 1,600 miles of trails that traverse 1,300 glacial lakes and 233,000 acres of public forestland.

Cruiserfest, held on Lake Minocqua, is sponsored by the Cross Country Cruisers snowmobile club. Activities include a snowmobile parade followed by fireworks, a radar run, snowmobile demos, silent auction, food and music.

For more information, call 800-44-North; visit www.minocqua.org.

St. Germain: You might say St. Germain is in the center of it all for snowmobilers. Every year, there’s a Radar Run, where riders can race their sleds on a 1,000-foot track of ice and be timed by a radar gun. In the unlimited class, speeds can top 160 mph.

You can rent a home at Rustic Manor Motor Lodge and enjoy the wood-burning fireplace. There’s also a large heated garage for snowmobile repairs. Black Bear Lodge on Little St. Germain Lake has condolike deluxe lodge homes with stone gas fireplaces and amazing lake views. The homes and cottages at Elbert’s Resort are appointed with fireplaces, too.

For more information, call 715-477-2205; visit www.st-germain.com.

Hurley: Who can argue this is the state’s snow capital with snowfall totals known to top 300 inches. People often snowmobile here through the first week of April. Off-trail snowmobile riding is also available on 175,000 acres of public land. This is for the adventurous rider, and a certain type of sled is necessary to take into the deep snow.

Their big snowmobile event of the year is the Pro Vintage Snowmobile Olympus, which takes place on a half-mile oval track at the Gogebic County Fairgrounds.

For more information, call 866-340-4334; visit www.hurleywi.com.

Boulder Junction: Boulder Junction is ideally located in the Lake Superior snowbelt, which means lots of snow for snowmobilers. Trail No. 8 in the area is especially scenic and serene. And when riders want to take a break from the trails, they can spend some time shopping in this town’s many shops and galleries.

For more information, call 800-466-8759; visit www.boulderjct.org.

Travelers can find year-round Wisconsin getaway ideas, travel planning, events and free guides at www.TravelWisconsin.com.

You can “Like” them at Face book.com/TravelWisconsin or follow them at Twitter.com/TravelWI. Or you can download the free Travel Wisconsin™ iPhone app.

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Cruises: Relax And Enjoy The Ride

(NAPSI)—There’s a reason why cruising has always been popular with the rich and famous—it’s a magnificent way to travel! Time doesn’t stand still on a cruise, but it does slow down to a relaxed pace that lets you enjoy life’s little luxuries, like a well-appointed room that keeps things simple and attentive service that anticipates not only your every need, but your heart’s desires, too.

Savor the spaciousness of a full-scale luxury liner offering all the accoutrements of a floating resort out on the open seas with activities to gratify every family member. Or relish the romance of a more intimate sailing vessel that navigates the less-traveled passageways of charming tropical islands.

For a customized experience, American Safari Cruises offers unstructured interisland cruises in Hawaii aboard a 36-guest luxury yacht beginning October 2011. In Tahiti’s Society and Tuamotu Islands, Dream Yacht Charter lets you chart the course of a four-cabin luxury catamaran.

And with about 70 percent of the Earth’s surface covered by water, cruises go everywhere—Hawaii, the Caribbean, Tahiti, Fiji and the Cook Islands, just to name a few.

For more information, contact Pleasant Holidays at 1-800-448-3333 or at www.PleasantHolidays.com.

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Six Travel Tips To Help You Save

(NAPSI)-Today’s travelers are focused on planning getaways that won’t break the bank. Making the most of your travel dollars is easier if you follow a few helpful tips:

1. Consider Driving.

Flying can be fast but don’t forget about road trips. It may take a little longer to get there but your budget will thank you.

2. Be Flexible with Dates.

Consider looking at several different dates when booking your hotel and airfare. A change of just one day has the potential to lower costs significantly.

3. Pack Light.

Overly heavy luggage can result in large airport baggage fees. It also decreases fuel economy when driving.

4. Check Your Insurance.

Rather than paying the insurance that car rental companies offer for a supplemental fee, check the insurance policy you already have. Often, your plan will include a travel clause that you may not be aware of. This can save travelers over $30 a day.

5. Look for Free Extras.

Choose hotels that include extras like free Wi-Fi, free local and long-distance phone calls and complimentary breakfast. Brands like Microtel Inns & Suites, which routinely ranks “Highest in Guest Satisfaction in the Economy/Budget Segment” by J.D. Power and Associates, offer these amenities at all locations, adding up to big savings and value.

6. Join a Loyalty Program.

Free hotel and airline loyalty programs enable members to earn rewards prior to and during their travels. For example, the Wyndham Rewards program, which is one of the largest in the world with more than 6,500 participating hotels, allows travelers to earn points for both their hotel stays as well as purchases made at participating retailers. Points add up quickly and can be used for everything from gas and food gift cards to free hotel stays and more.

“Travelers today want quality and they want value,” says Roy Flora, lifelong hotelier and group president of the Microtel hotel brand. “Sometimes all it takes is a willingness to try new hotel and airline options. Just be sure to check reviews and listen to what other consumers are saying.”

For more information, visit www.microtelinn.com.

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Audiobooks turn rowdy road trips into family fun.

(NAPSI)-During the holidays, families travel an average of 489 miles and spend about 91 percent of that time in cars. To keep the peace among generations with varying tastes, many families turn to audiobooks for in-car entertainment that brings people, places and stories to life. In anticipation of the holiday travel season, long-distance drives and restless passengers, Audible.com presents five great audiobooks that take listeners on new journeys through brilliant storytelling and vibrant narration.

“Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” (Audible)

• Elijah Wood takes the family on a ride of a lifetime, capturing the youthful excitement of Huck’s perilous adventures. Traveling along the Mississippi River with one of literature’s most beloved characters, listeners aged 8 to 80 will be enthralled by this 100- year-old classic that remains fresh and funny.

“A Christmas Carol” (Audible)

• Acclaimed actor Tim Curry captures the spirit of Christmas through beloved and frightening characters as he narrates Charles Dickens’ holiday classic. Guiding listeners through Ebenezer Scrooge’s three ghostly encounters, Curry brings the timeless tale of forgiveness and redemption to life.

“The Help” (Penguin Audiobooks)

• Performed by a strong ensemble cast, Kathryn Stockett’s moving novel mixes the personal and political, giving listeners a glimpse into the contrasting relationships among women across the racial divide in the 1960s South. Through humor and humanity, the story provides listeners with deep connections to characters, and a powerful perspective on today’s race relations.

“The Christmas Chronicles-The Legend of Santa Claus” (Tantor)

• Weaving in and out of familiar holiday myths, Tim Slover’s “Christmass Chronicles” uncovers an entertaining and inspiring legend of the 14th-century craftsman dedicated to bringing happiness to children’s lives. Kids will be thrilled to learn why Santa climbs down the chimney, how he built his workshop and, most importantly, how he delivers gifts to children around the world on Christmas Eve.

“Gulliver’s Travels” (Audible)

• Who loved to travel more than Gulliver? Alas, his favorite pastime was to be his downfall. Jonathan Swift’s classic novel about a giant’s adventure in Lilliput will be familiar to everyone, especially with a new movie in theaters. The Audible version stars David Hyde Pierce in a witty performance that will delight the whole family.

This holiday season, with hours of great entertainment available to please everyone along the way, over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house might not be far enough! Find these titles and more online at Audible.com.

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Mobile Apps That Go On Vacation With You

(NAPSI)-Increasingly, consumers are using their smart- phones for everything from getting timely information about one-of-a-kind sales to booking restaurant reservations.

Now, savvy travelers visiting South Carolina can also use their smartphones to get real-time information about accommodations and events when on vacation.

Mobile apps offering visitor information and special deals have been launched by a number of destinations in the “Palmetto State” in an effort to give visitors a focus and timeliness they can’t get from standard guidebooks.

Here are some examples:

• Voted the “Friendliest City” by Conde Nast Traveler magazine, Charleston has the reputation for being one of the top wedding destinations in the country. The city boasts numerous wedding-friendly venues, vendors, planners, caterers and florists. The Charleston Wedding Planner mobile app is designed to help a bride navigate her way through all the options. And, to keep things current, free updates are available about every eight weeks.

• The app for the official guide to the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor’s Lowcountry region can direct visitors to a wide variety of attractions. The Lowcountry has much to offer, including sources of antiques, arts and crafts centers, bird-watching areas, canoe/kayak outings, African-American history tours, local foods, military history trails, historic districts, national forests and national, state and local parks.

• The history of Beaufort and the surrounding Sea Islands dates back almost 500 years, and the destinations and area accommodations reflect that rich history. Some of the most vibrant and well-preserved history in the area is also known for its Gullah culture. The Gullah are known for preserving their African linguistic and cultural heritage. The Beaufort mobile app offers timely text and photos on attractions such as these, as well as fishing and eco-tours and the area’s annual shrimp festival.

To learn more, visit the website at www.DiscoverSouthCarolina.com.

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More Restaurants Are Using What's Grown Locally

(NAPSI)-While it’s been said that all politics is really local, some believe that the same is true when it come to the most flavorful and nutritious food.

Actually, there is now a term for those who try to eat foods that are grown locally or regionally. They’re called locavores.

By eating locally, most locavores hope to create a greater connection between themselves and their food sources and support their local economy.

Around the country, some rising chefs and restaurants have begun to champion the movement. In South Carolina, for instance, many restaurants are responding by featuring products from local farms and dairies and seafood harvested from local waters.

Here are two examples:

• Husk Restaurant in Charleston, S.C.—Husk is a new restaurant located in the heart of Charleston’s historic district. It is helmed by James Beard Award−winning chef Sean Brock. He’s committed to providing “refined interpretations” of Southern cuisine.

The restaurant has taken on the mission of using the bounty of the surrounding area, exploring an “ingredient-driven cuisine that begins in the rediscovery of heirloom products and redefines what it means to cook and eat in Charleston.”

All its suppliers are from farms around the Southeast. The menu changes daily and is driven by what’s available in the local markets. You can learn more by visiting www.huskrestaurant.com.

• Soby’s in Greenville, S.C.—Soby’s declares that it is dedicated to the “farm to table” experience, adding to its gourmet menu local products such as goat cheese from Split Creek Farm; grits from Anson Mills; Carolina Gold rice from the fields in the South Carolina Lowcountry; crispy bacon from Caw Caw Creek Farm; and fresh vegetables grown in local fields.

The restaurant’s chef, Shaun Garcia, is part of the movement, practicing sustainable farming on his 10-acre farm. There, he grows many of the fresh ingredients featured at the restaurant. Learn more at www.sobys.com.

For more information on dining in South Carolina, visit www.SavorSouthCarolina.com.

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