True Nature Travels Blog

5 Essential Survival Skills Every Adventure Traveler Should Master
Nature-based travel has become our escape from the stress of the pandemic, a means to restoring our connection to Mother Earth. While we have yet to go back to restorative yoga retreats, some still crave the adrenaline-packed adventure trips that help you feel pure exhilaration and still get away from the pandemic-related chaos. The preparation process for your typical retreat is completely different from what you need to do in order to brace yourself for an adventure – which is why we’ve decided to address this vital topic.

Especially if this is your very first adventurous road trip or camping getaway, there are a few crucial skills you should master before you hit the road. Ensuring your own safety and the safety of your travel companions will help you enjoy your adventure even more and allow you to immerse yourself in the natural wealth you’re about to discover!

Get to know the geography

5 Essential Survival Skills Every Adventure Traveler Should Master
We’ve grown accustomed to our phones and the built-in GPS systems that help us move around without putting too much thought into it. Alas, when you’re in the wild, and especially if your phone battery gives out or you lose reception, you need to be able to get back to your car or camping zone without getting lost.

Research the area you’re going to explore, so that you learn about the topography beforehand, as well as any potentially dangerous zones to avoid, together with the wildlife. Always bring a physical map with you, so that you can get back safely in case your gadgets fail you!

First aid and CPR essential skills

5 Essential Survival Skills Every Adventure Traveler Should Master
When you’re on your own, or with few people around you, but away from civilization, you need to be aware of potential health emergencies. Especially if someone in your group has allergies or could potentially experience a cardiac episode. In such situations, it’s best to master the basics of CPR and first aid to be properly equipped to provide emergency assistance.

First and foremost, always bring a first aid kit and check that you have enough supplies for all. Additionally, practice these essential skills before you go off the grid, and you’ll be much safer during your adventure outings and you’ll be able to provide medical assistance until you can reach a hospital safely.

Ensuring clean water

5 Essential Survival Skills Every Adventure Traveler Should MasterClean water in nature doesn’t mean that you can safely drink it, no matter how translucent or cool and fresh it might be based on your personal assessment. Clean water means that you have eliminated pathogens and potential microorganisms that could be harmful for your health, so it’s always advisable to boil the water you find in nature.

Alternatively, you can use portable water filters designed for such occasions, to help adventure travelers drink water safely wherever they are! Of course, you should ideally bring your own drinking water or find a nearby place where you can purchase it, but for real outdoor travelers, these filters can be lifesavers.

Learn how to start (and manage) a fire

5 Essential Survival Skills Every Adventure Traveler Should Master
It’s one thing when you have designated barbecue areas and safe fire pits, but when you’re out in the while and on your own, you should learn how to start and control a fire. This means you should be able to keep yourself warm, prepare food and boil water safely, but also avoid losing control over the fire and potentially wreaking havoc on the local flora and fauna.

Practice in a safe area in your backyard or with someone more experienced, by collecting tinder (twigs, leaves, dry grass, and the like) and using rocks or something equally safe to create a fire bed that will control the expansion of the flame. You can even try out some of the gritty ways to start a fire with little to no assistance of modern tools, so that you can be fully prepared for any scenario.

Packing essentials for an adventure

When you’re planning your yoga retreat, you’ll likely focus on soothing things such as setting up your ideal playlist or packing the most comfortable pair of leggings. For an adventure, you need a completely different approach to packing, so here’s a list of the most essential must-haves to keep in mind:

  • A multipurpose knife to help you with food preparation, terrain difficulties, lighting fires, and other tasks.
  • A tent and sleeping bags for you and your travel companions if you plan to sleep under the stars, and make sure they are waterproof and suitable for the climate in which you’ll spend your adventure.
  • A flashlight that is both durable and perhaps waterproof if you plan on some boating, or any other water-based activities.
  • Clothing layers – because temperatures might suddenly change and you could experience bad weather, it’s good to have waterproof and windproof garments to keep you safe and prevent health issues.
  • The means to build a fire, since you cannot possibly rely on available resources on the premises, you should always plan ahead and bring two lighters, since matches are unreliable.

Adventure trips should by no means jeopardize the safety of your travel companions, no matter how exciting or thrilling they might be. Staying healthy, safe, and mindful of your surroundings is crucial for such escapades, as they give you the freedom to enjoy all activities and the destinations you choose with peace of mind. Create a careful plan for your adventure, and make sure you put a strong emphasis on safety for all!

 

 

 

 

True Nature Travels Blog


The COVID-19 pandemic may have forced you to put your travel plans for 2020 on hold. But as restrictions lift, you might be interested in exploring past your own backyard once more, especially during the holiday season. In 2021, travelers will begin venturing out again while taking steps to stay safe. You may want to travel with a group to a far-off destination through
True Nature Travels, or you may be daydreaming about an exciting road trip! With these tips, you’ll be able to plan one without risking your health and safety.

 

Car Maintenance

Before any long drive, you should take some time to address any necessary car maintenance issues. Popular Mechanics recommends checking to see if you need an oil change and making sure that you have enough radiator fluid, brake fluid, and transmission fluid. Double-check that your tires are properly inflated — you might also need to rotate them. 

You can also purchase new floor mats to keep your factory-installed carpets from collecting mud, dirt, salt, and other grime. When you’re buying new floor mats, check out reviews for different products first and try to find a product made from high-quality materials. Finally, if you suspect that your brake pads, air filters, or light bulbs need to be replaced, make an appointment with a mechanic well before your departure date. And don’t forget to update your car insurance policy if you’re not satisfied with your coverage.

 


Route and Schedule   

You may know your eventual destination, but you’ll need to plan out your overall route and decide on your road trip schedule. Whether you’re visiting relatives for the holidays or celebrating the season on your own, make sure that you have enough time to do everything you want to do. 

When deciding how long you’ll stay at each stop, keep in mind that some days are safer for drivers than others, so aim to do most of your driving during these safer times. For instance, Carwise states that you should try to avoid driving during the daily rush hour between 4 pm to 7 pm, as this is the time when most accidents occur. If you’ll be going on your road trip during the colder winter months, be prepared to drive in bad weather

 

Choose Outdoor Activities

What will you do on your road trip? While attending events that involve indoor gatherings is not the safest option, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the great outdoors while traveling. During the holidays, many people will be traveling, so you should make an effort to avoid crowds. Visiting beautiful parks and natural wonders can be just as interesting as touring museums or dining at nice restaurants, and you’ll have plenty of room to roam without encountering other people. You might also want to go hiking — this will give you the chance to stretch your legs and get some much-needed exercise after being in the car for hours on end.

 

Pandemic Precautions

Even as it becomes safer to venture out of your home, you can’t neglect the importance of certain precautions. You do not want to get sick on your road trip. There’s nothing worse than feeling under the weather during the holidays. Pack plenty of masks and hand sanitizer, and continue social distancing during your journey. 

You may have postponed your original travel plans for this year because of the pandemic. In 2021, we will still have to take precautions and be careful to avoid contracting COVID-19. However, this does not mean that road trips will be off-limits. By following these guidelines, it’s entirely possible to stay safe when you hit the highway! 

 

Ready to experience adventures in nature? True Nature Travels is your resource for incredible journeys! Attend a retreat today.

True Nature Travels Blog

Most Beautiful Secret Beaches in Europe
The past year has been stress-filled, uncertain, and challenging for most of us. Not only have we had to deal with loss of various kinds, the loss of freedom to travel and explore, the loss of freedom to interact the way we’re accustomed to, all the way to the loss of our loved ones, the greatest one of all. The accumulated
stress of the pandemic has taken its toll, but we have yet to toil through the following few remaining months of the year, anticipating what 2021 will be all about. We hope to greet the New Year with a brighter outlook in terms of travel, so that we can heal and restore our sense of freedom.

In the meantime, in addition to following travel precautions during the pandemic and staying at home as much as possible, we can dream up the best possible list for the upcoming year. We can look forward to all the translucent waves greeting us at the cusp of a beach in France, or Croatia’s forest-laden islands in the Mediterranean, overlooking the vast blue of the sea. Here, we’ve compiled a list of several of the most stunning coastal stretches in Europe to add to your post-pandemic bucket list.

The pine-adorned Cala Escorxada
Most Beautiful Secret Beaches in EuropeAs if Spain isn’t enough, its islands can be even more alluring in terms of natural wealth, gorgeous beaches, and hidden nooks. Take Menorca as a perfect example and its many less-known wonders, but if you ask a local or an adventurous beach enthusiast, you’ll find that this little island is riddled with beaches fringed with pine trees, creating the perfect shade, and in idyllic contrast to the sand and iridescent waves.

Cala Escorxada fits that description perfectly, down to the natural shade and no crowds or noise. You can reach it on foot if you enjoy the hike, or by boat or kayak. It’s not easy to reach, so it takes a more determined mind to get there, but once you do, you’ll be embraced by its striking uniqueness. 

The hidden gems of the Makarska Riviera

The hidden gems of the Makarska RivieraCroatia and its nearby islands are perfect for anyone eager to get a glimpse of both friendly, sand-laden beaches, as well as their more rugged, dramatic counterparts. The Makarska Riviera in particular is one 38-mile stretch of absolute beauty. It’s ideal for those who crave some solitary time away from the crowds, and even more so for those who like the authentic look and feel of untouched Mediterranean.

If you want to reach some of its more secluded alcoves, you’ll need to use a motor yacht that can get you the most precious spots along the coastline, such as the hidden Nugal beach. They are compact and highly durable, proving extremely useful for venturing away from the more populous beaches of Croatia. 

Lisbon’s crown jewel, Adraga

The hidden gems of the Makarska Riviera

Portugal is certainly a wonderful destination for any yogi at heart, as you’ll find all kinds of dreamy retreats nestling in this diverse region of Europe. In addition to unparalleled wine and food, the capital of Portugal comes with all kinds of surprises, one of them being its coastline, worth exploring for every travel enthusiast with a soft spot for beaches. 

Although the most worthwhile beach isn’t directly in Lisbon, it’s a mere bus ride away, easy to reach, and belongs to the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park. Praia de Adraga is stunning in its versatility, offering you to explore its tunnels, caves, as well as its peaceful, sandy coast.

The hidden gems of the Makarska Riviera

Europe is brimming with exotic, sandy beaches just waiting to be discovered. Maybe this year is their well-deserved rest, as Mother Nature is often oversaturated with our presence and thoughtless actions – perhaps there’s a lesson to be learned about fostering greater respect to what she so generously grants us. 

These beautiful alcoves of absolute serenity and unspoiled beauty await our curious steps, and hopefully, we’ll earn the right to explore them as soon as the pandemic is done. Until then, we can keep dreaming and planning our travels for the future. 

 

True Nature Travels Blog

If you’re craving an antidote to the increasing amounts of stress and isolation of this year, we have a full calendar of retreats in 2021 and 2022 that you can safely escape to and have a much-needed retreat! We’ve made a number of updates to our safety guidelines, flexible booking conditions, and trip departures. The safety and wellbeing of our travelers and leaders remain our top priority. Save now and travel later! Starting tomorrow 10/1, save $200 off all retreats! Combine with Early Bird offers for up to $500 off with promo code RETREAT200. Ask us about our risk-free flexible booking policies.
As the world begins to open up again, we look forward to safely giving you a much-needed retreat to find your true nature!

Check out our 2021/22 Retreat Calendar.

Retreat Yourself.

True Nature Travels Blog

7 tips while traveling during coronavirus

Coronavirus made its first mark in December and then in some parts post-February. Little did we know back then that our lives were going to change forever. From worrying to stressing, from
having panic attacks to being borderline depressed- this is the new normal for many of us. And the number keeps increasing every day. What seems like one lifetime ago, we used to go
travel to all the places that piqued our interest, and come back refreshed and rejuvenated. Everyone has almost forgotten what travel used to feel like. However, many people are trying to shift back to the life of normalcy and make efforts to plan, organize, and execute travel with their loved ones. After all, everyone deserves it.

While for many traveling still seems to be a bleak possibility, some countries have opened their doors to tourists by showing caution and a lot of courage. This decision is mainly based on the
fact that many heavily depend on tourism for their revenues. The safety lies in your hands first, and therefore, there are specific sets of things that must be kept in mind if you are traveling in
the coronavirus time. Following are recommendations and tips if you plan a trip away from current conditions, if only for a little while:

1. Get permission from Authorities.

With the coronavirus cases rising with every passing day, governments are adopting stricter measures to contain the spread and restrict movement. While the travel industry is trying to make a comeback, you must travel by keeping certain things in mind. One of the most critical things which should be kept under consideration is getting permission from the authorities.
Travel in the times of coronavirus is not about cleaning your car, sanitizing its seats, packing up roof rack accessories, and getting ready to be on the move. If you are traveling in such times, you must keep in mind getting the pass/permit to cross boundaries across different states. Many countries have already started issuing electronic passes online.

7 tips while traveling during coronavirus

2. Prepare for the worst.

Prepare for the worst circumstances. Carry extra money, carry international credit cards, enable net banking, and carry emergency supplies. Being prepared for the worst is an extremely crucial tip that you must keep in mind while traveling in the times of Coronavirus. The truth is that nobody anticipated the coronavirus outbreak. Several passengers and travelers got trapped where they were. So many people remained stuck at one particular destination for months because an unexpected lockdown was announced.

Similarly, it is essential to be prepared for any unforeseen circumstances, and in case the virus takes a sharp turn, and the cases start spreading even more rapidly. It is imperative that you either wait for a vaccine. If not, you can be extremely careful and mentally prepared for any adverse situation regarding the virus. This includes carrying all medication, health insurance, digital currency, and more.

3. Travel only when necessary.

The rise of this virus has dried off the aviation and travel sector. Hotels are vacant, and not many people are traveling. One crucial tip to keep in mind while traveling under these circumstances would be to move only when necessary. If you are going during such times, you must make sure that you follow all the safety measures and scan through the hotel that you will be booking. Under such situations, it is critical to book a hotel offering sanitization, health checks, and proper cleanliness to provide travelers the best experience.

7 tips while traveling during coronavirus

4. Remember to protect yourself.

If you are wailing by the beach or trekking in the mountains, you must protect yourself. Therefore, you must wear a mask and gloves at all times, irrespective of whether you see people around you or not. Even while you are shopping at malls or visiting the slightest of crowded places, always remember to sanitize your hands when you touch any surface. Moreover, ensure you do not come in contact with anyone who is sneezing or coughing. Be especially conscious if you are touching an elevator button or exchanging currency notes with a vendor.

5. Avoid eating out

One of the best ways to keep yourself safe while on vacation in times of coronavirus is to avoid eating out. This alternative saves you some bucks, but it also helps you cook your meals. You
can do this only when you book an Airbnb or a hotel that provides you with basics like an electric kettle or a microwave to cook in. Cooking your meals will drastically reduce your chances of catching the virus. In such a case, all you need to do is pack some basic food with you in your suitcase or at the maximum, visit the nearest grocery store to buy basic meals which can be cooked on the go.

Few of such portable food items include sandwiches, toasts, noodles, etc. You should also pack along a few alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages so that you don’t have to buy them. Keep
your purchases to a minimum while traveling since this will decrease the probability of you coming in contact with the sellers, touching the notes they carry, or even the items that you buy.
If you do buy something at all, make sure you wipe it with a sanitizing cloth to kill the virus.

7 tips while traveling during coronavirus

True Nature Travels Blog

Surprising Ways to Make Travel More Affordable

If you’ve been bitten by the travel bug, you know how much fun it is to plan your next getaway. The only problem is that most of us have to save money in order to afford travel. Unfortunately, this means that many people put off travel or avoid it altogether, assuming the cost is out of reach. We know the costs of traveling can add up, but there are surprising ways you can save money on just about every travel-related expense, which makes it much more affordable than you might imagine.

Start Saving Before You Go

Saving money on big-ticket purchases like airfare and accommodations certainly makes a difference, but many people overlook how much all the small things add up. The reality is that it’s easy to save on the small things through websites like Rakuten that have coupons for all kinds of travel gear.

Make sure you always use these online deals, whether you’re shopping for more expensive items like luggage and outdoor gear or smaller items like toiletries and snacks for the road. What’s even better is that you can often find cashback offers, which is the perfect way to stash extra savings for your travels.

Surprising Ways to Make Travel More Affordable

Book Budget-Conscious Accommodations

When we suggest booking budget-conscious accommodations, that doesn’t necessarily mean booking a budget-quality hotel (although there are some great budget hotel chains to choose from). Some of our favorite money-saving tips from The Huffington Post include staying outside of a city, opting out-of-room upgrades, and choosing a rental rather than a hotel if you’re traveling with a group. It’s also smart to ask for discounts. Booking through a travel agency is a great way to get a lower price, plus many hotels offer discounts for AAA members, veterans, and senior citizens.

Don’t Fall for False Savings

We all have access to the internet, which means anyone can take it upon themselves to search for travel deals online. There are good deals to be found, but you may run into hidden costs. For example, Forbes explains how using a budget airline doesn’t always add up to the savings you expect because many charge for checked luggage and other amenities that are included on other carriers.

Don’t Let Sightseeing Bust Your Budget

After accommodations and transportation, spending money while on your trip takes another big chunk of your budget. Saving money on tours is another benefit of booking through a travel agent, but you can still reduce sightseeing costs when traveling on your own. Our top tip for adventure travelers is to explore the outdoors. Exploring on foot is free, and it gives you a more authentic experience, whether you’re in a city or visiting a natural wonder.

For urban travelers who want to see multiple tourist sites, it may be worth purchasing a city pass. Many big cities offer these, and the amount you save is significant if you plan on visiting enough attractions. And while using a city pass is already a good deal, you can often get them at a discount to save even more.

If you think about any trip you’ve taken in the past, you’ll probably remember how the experience of being somewhere new is what made it amazing. What does that mean for budget-conscious travelers? It means you can save money by skipping some excursions, eating in more, and staying in a mid-range room. You can do all of this without missing a thing, which means your next great vacation may be closer than you think.

True Nature Travels Blog

Airline - Covid-19

During this time where your travel plans may have been impacted by COVID-19, you may wonder what are your options when canceling or rescheduling a flight and what are the next steps.

Whether you have purchased a flight with airline miles, a debit or credit card, or rewards here are some tips that you will hopefully find helpful.

The Golden Tip: During this time, the airlines want you to continue to travel. They have instituted policies, many of which you will find below. Know that there is also some flexibility. For example, if your retreat was postponed until July 2021 and the airline is only offering the option a credit through 2020, let them know your situation and that you are requesting an extension to travel next year. Whatever your story is, know that it is very common right now and the airlines want to do their best to help you.

Scenario 1: You booked your flight with airline miles

If you used airline miles to purchase a flight, go directly to the airline you booked with for flight cancellation information.
Many U.S. airlines are offering reimbursements, no-fee cancellations, or credit-earning opportunities for flights canceled due to COVID-19. You can read official statements and other information from the following U.S. airlines, below, including any elite status extensions.

Delta Airlines

Flight change and cancellation policies

If you wish to cancel your flight, you can do so through May 2020 and receive a flight eCredit for use through May 31, 2022. This includes customers who:

  • Canceled a flight for March, April or May of 2020
  • Already have eCredits from a flight canceled in March, April or May 2020
    You also have the option of rebooking your flight with a waived change fee up to one year from the date of purchase. To qualify, the ticket must have been purchased between March 1, 2020, and May 31, 2020. Additional information can be found on Delta’s coronavirus travel updates page.

Delta Medallion® Program

Delta Medallion Members’ 2020 status is extended through 2021. This means whatever elite status you earned with Delta this year will extend through January 31, 2022, or the end of Delta’s Medallion year. Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) will also extend into 2021.

You can expect an extension of six months to a year for all other Delta programs and credit card-specific benefits. More detailed information can be found here.

“We are continuously monitoring how coronavirus impacts travel and will make additional adjustments to support our customers’ needs as the pandemic evolves,” said Sandeep Dube, senior vice president, customer engagement and loyalty, in a statement.

Airline - Covid-19

American Airlines

Flight change and cancellation policies

You’ll receive a waived ticket change fee when rebooking American Airlines flights that were:

  • Originally purchased prior to March 1, 2020, for flights departing through May 31, 2020
  • Booked between March 1, 2020, and April, 30, 2020

You can also cancel flights that meet the above requirements for no additional charge and then rebook with a waived change fee at a later date. More information on American Airlines’ policies can be found here.

AAdvantage® program

American Airlines released a statement late last week confirming miles scheduled to expire between April 2, 2020, and June 30, 2020, will receive an extension.

“Miles that were set to expire during this time will now expire on July 1, if there is no additional activity in your account during that time period,” said American Airlines in a statement. “You may have previously received an email advising that your miles would expire soon. We’re taking action to protect the rewards you’ve earned in this time of uncertainty and reduced travel opportunities.”

Additionally, American Airlines has stated elite status will be extended through January 31, 2022, including those set to expire January 31, 2021. AAdvantage members should see these changes reflected in their accounts by May 15, 2020.

The airline also announced lowered elite qualification requirements for 2020, which you can view, here.

United Airlines

Flight change and cancellation policies

Flight change fees are waived for tickets that are issued by April 30, 2020. You’ll have 12 months to rebook the ticket free of charge.

If you cancel a United flight, you’ll be awarded an electronic travel certificate for use within the next 24 months from issue date. For more information, you can read United’s guide to canceling and rebooking flights.

United MileagePlus® program

MileagePlus® members will receive an extension of their elite status through the end of the 2021 program year (January 31, 2022).

United also stated its lowering Premier qualification thresholds for 2021 status levels by 50 percent and offering membership and subscription benefits for an additional six months. You can read more details, here.

Airline - Covid-19

Southwest Airlines

Flight change and cancellation policies

Southwest Airlines has a long-standing policy that allows you to cancel or change flights without a fee. In light of current events, the airline has made modifications to its policy.

“If your plans change or if you decide to postpone your travel, the funds used to pay for your flight can be applied to future travel as long as you cancel your reservation at least 10 minutes prior to the scheduled departure,” said Ryan Green, SVP and chief marketing officer, in a statement.

Upon cancellation, you’ll receive travel funds, or credits, valid for one year. Travel funds issued between March 1, 2020, and May 31, 2020, are valid through June 30, 2021. Additional information can be found on Southwest’s official coronavirus travel information page.

If you’d rather rebook, flights scheduled between now and April 30, 2020, can be changed to a date at least 60 days from the original departure date and won’t incur a fare difference charge.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® program

A-List and A-List Preferred Members whose status expires December 31, 2020, will receive an automatic extension of their status through December 31, 2021, including members with elite statuses earned through a Southwest promotion. If you’re currently enrolled in a Southwest promotion to earn elite status and have yet to reach the flight requirements, you’ll now have until October 30, 2020, to do so.

Additionally, those who earned a Companion Pass with an expiration date of December 31, 2020, will get an extension through June 30, 2021. Learn more, here.

Alaska Airlines

Flight change and cancellation policies

You’ll receive flight credit certificates toward future Alaska Airlines flights purchased:

  • On or before February 26, 2020, for travel through May 31, 2020
  • Between February 27, 2020, and April 30, 2020, for travel through February 28, 2021

Flight credits must be used by February 28, 2021. In both instances, you can also cancel your flight for no fee and receive either a credit certificate or funds deposited into your online account.

Saver fares aren’t eligible for trip rescheduling, but you can still cancel.

Links to additional coronavirus travel information from Alaska Airlines can be found here.

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™

Whichever Mileage Plan status you currently hold with Alaska Airlines will be extended through December 31, 2021.
In regard to companion certificates, those expiring in 2020 are now extended until December 31, 2020, for travel up until November 26, 2021. You can read more, here.

Jet Blue

Flight change and cancellation policies

As of April 7, 2020, JetBlue is waiving flight change and cancellation fees for travel dates up until May 31, 2020. Flights can be:

  • Rebooked for travel through January 4, 2021
  • Canceled in exchange for JetBlue Travel Bank Credit (expires 18 months from the date issued)

You can read more information on JetBlue’s travel alerts page.

Airline - Covid-19

Didn’t see your airline?

Here are a few additional U.S. airlines that have commented on ticket changes and cancellations:

Scenario 2: You booked your flight with a debit or credit card

You’ll have the best luck reaching out to the airline — rather than your issuer — to cancel and collect reimbursement for a flight booked with your credit card.

“Airlines are offering very generous refund and fee waiver policies related to COVID-19,” says Ted Rossman, industry analyst at Bankrate. For nonrefundable tickets, “Customers should know that they probably won’t get the actual money back — instead, the airline will hold it and apply it towards future travel.”

Delta Air Lines, as noted above, is offering eCredit equal to the value of your original ticket for future use with the airline.

“Look for an expiration date on those funds,” Rossman says. “And know that you might have to pay a fare difference if your eventual ticket cost is higher than what you already paid. Still, this is a very good deal.”

It’s important to note that for refundable tickets (such as tickets purchased with trip cancellation coverage), you’ll be refunded in U.S. dollars, rather than flight credits.

Trip cancellation and interruption benefits

Typically, travel credit cards offer trip cancellation protection, but it likely won’t cover broader coronavirus concerns.

“Credit card trip cancellation protection typically doesn’t allow you to cancel just because you’re afraid you might get sick,” Rossman says.

For example, American Express’ trip cancellation and interruption FAQs sheet for COVID-19 states, “Fear of traveling due to sickness, epidemic, or pandemic (such as the Coronavirus) is not a Covered Loss under your American Express Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance benefit.”

You may, though, be able to submit a claim if you fall under one of the traditionally covered situations, like accidental injury or harsh weather. American Express’ list of approved situations conveniently includes “quarantine imposed by a physician for health reasons.”

Trip cancellation policies for an issuer can vary based on the exact card you own, so make sure to sign in to your online account for benefits information on your specific card.

Airline - Covid-19

Scenario 3: You booked your flight with credit card rewards

It’s not ideal, but whether or not your credit card rewards are refunded can vary based on your issuer’s guidelines and the COVID-19 cancellation policy of your airline.

Chase, for example, is offering the option to submit a trip cancellation request for flights booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards® and trips paid for using rewards earned by an eligible Chase card. You must first confirm that your airline has waived trip cancellation fees.

“If you booked with points or miles, you should get those back (not a dollar equivalent, but the actual points or miles),” Rossman says — and most likely with a waived redepositing fee.

If you transferred your rewards to book a flight

In many instances, you cannot undo a rewards transfer from your credit card to an airline partner. If you booked your flight in this manner, reach out to your airline, rather than your issuer, for reimbursement information.

Is your flight a few months down the road? Consider this

“If your flight is scheduled for early summer or later on in the year, there’s no reason to cancel or pay a change fee,” says Rossman.

“A lot of people are confused about what to do with trips in May, June, etc.,” Rossman says. “I recommend waiting for now. We can hope things will improve quickly, and maybe you’ll be able to travel as planned after all. But if not, then the fee waivers will likely be extended, or maybe the flight itself will be canceled.”

Source
Updated 5.4.20

Airline - Covid-19

True Nature Travels Blog

solo travel tips

Solo traveling is a challenge everyone should try at least once in their lives. What it does is test how comfortable you are with yourself. So, it may or may not be for you. But, wouldn’t it be something worth exploring?

Isn’t it lonely to travel by yourself? Is it safe? Tons of questions arise whenever someone is challenged to fly by themselves, which hampers them from exploring the world alone. Since you are alone pretty much when you go solo, others think it can be lonely. But, if you look around, the world is huge and full of interesting people and destinations. When you are on your own, you tend to step outside your comfort zone and reach out to people around you. Thus, allowing you to meet new people and friends along the way. Mingling with the locals opens your eyes to understand and appreciate their culture. The question of safety depends on your destination and how vulnerable you are to danger.

Here are some travel solo tips to make the most out of your adventure.

Plan ahead of time

People might ask, does it not remove the adventure or fun when you plan too much? Remember, you are traveling solo, which is an adventure by itself. Planning involves research of your destination, where to stay, what to eat, how to go from one place to another, and
another interesting subject that’s unique to the place. With knowledge, you gain more confidence shuffling around alone.

Respect the culture in the country you are traveling to

The last thing you want is to do something that might offend a local and get caught up in a situation. The do and don’t in the community or country you are traveling to. Familiarizing yourself with the currency (and exchange rate), mode of transportation, and cultural norms. Such as in Bhutan and North Korea, where you cannot travel by yourself without a tour guide.

solo travel tips

Don’t jam-pack your schedule

Before booking any tours or reserving tickets ahead of time, check the distance of your destinations. You wouldn’t want to waste your time on the road all the time to visit all the places in your recommendation. Make it simple and choose destinations that speak to you. After all, traveling is all about making fun and new discoveries, and not counting the most number of locations or destinations you have visited.

Don’t run out of cash

Before splurging all your money, consider the number of days you have left to travel around. Save the shopping for the last day when you have scoured the place for good finds.

Get a local sim

Whether you are calling your hotel or taxi, getting a local sim will save you tons of headaches. Aside from this, it will ensure that you have access to the internet, where you can find pretty much everything.

Download apps that can help you while traveling

  • Some apps that can do wonders to your travel, solo or not are the following:
  • Google Map – download an offline version of the vicinity you are traveling to.
  • Currency – an app that instantly converts the money to four different currencies of your choice.
  • Rome2rio is an app that will help you navigate from one place to the next.
  • Google translate – familiarizing, let alone, memorizing the language of the country you are visiting is a hassle. Save some of the words or phrases you will regularly need to communicate freely with the locals.

solo travel tips

Don’t be the target

Especially when traveling to a foreign country, you can easily be a target for a pickpocket or thief. Here are some quick ways to blend in casually with the locals:

  • Walk like you know where you are headed. Instead of taking out your smartphone or going through a physical map, use a headset. While on foot, you can still hear the instruction of Waze or Google Maps.
  • Wear a fake wedding band. Especially for women, this can be an excellent way to escape any unwanted advancement from a male. And, if by chance, a thief approached you, hand over the ring which they can do away without too much cost.
  • Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or outfit. You don’t want to attract attention and be the next target of thieves.
  • Don’t get intoxicated. Drinking too much is a big No-No when you are alone in a foreign place. Drink moderately.
  • Use sling bags or belt bags where you can put your purse. As much as possible, don’t bring all your cash all at once and spread them in different pouches.

Travel must-haves

One important thing about traveling solo is to pack light. These are travel essentials that be present in your bag.

  • Passport holder/organizer. It is easier to have your essential documents in one place to make it easier to locate. Photocopy your relevant documents and keep them in your bag for emergency reasons.
  • Travel pillow/blanket. Make use of convertible items, which can be a pillow or blanket at the same time. Blankets are bulky and heavy, using a convertible one will save you space.
  • First aid kit. It is always better prepared than sorry. Packed some medicine like antacid, analgesic and for diarrhea, as additional back up.
  • Universal adapter. When traveling to a new country, make sure to bring an adapter so your chargers will work.
  • Powerbank. Enough said.

Where to stay

Admittedly, flying solo can be expensive when booking accommodations. However, this should not restrict you from checking in a place that makes you comfortable and safe. Hostels are great money-savers and allow you to network with various travelers. On the other hand, hotels and Airbnb accommodations are fantastic alternatives for the private, relaxed, and secure environment. Regardless of where you stay, the best option is to find a place that is near the airport or near the city center that’ll allow you to move conveniently.

Final Word

Traveling solo is an opportunity to exercise your freedom to do whatever pleases you. With nobody to hamper or dictate your schedule, you have everything under your control. Let loose and break free. Traveling allows you to discover new things, gain a fresh perspective, and appreciate life. Doing it yourself will challenge your limit and belief. In a lot of ways, it can change your life. Thus, solo traveling does make you alone but never lonely.

solo traveling tips

About the Author

Since the age of 16, Tim, a writer at SMK Blog, has enjoyed Traveling and enjoy the world. Although he loves seeing new attractions, he enjoys reading and exploring new things.

True Nature Travels Blog

gift of travel

Traveling takes time, planning, and often some expenses, but always gives back so much more. It allows you to get out of your normal routine, go see something new or discover the completely unknown. Whether it is an afternoon hike in the well-trodden woods near home or a week in a new and exciting part of the world, I find that travel continues to give gifts long after the journey is over. It creates a wealth of experiences to pull from and the confidence to go forth and learn new things about ourselves and others. Memories are created with new and old friends as you explore together.

To share the gift of travel, we are offering $100 off all of our Wellness Retreats through December 15th! This coupon can be combined with Early Bird Discounts for up to $400 off! Enter coupon code GRATITUDE100 in the “Admin Only” field at checkout.

Give yourself the gift of wellness, travel, AND savings this year!

2020 – 2021 Retreat Calendar

Black Friday Travel Sale, Cyber Monday Travel Sale

True Nature Travels Blog

Wellness Trip 1

Nowadays, people resort to going on vacation solely to run away from the hard-working and tedious lives they are leading. However, many tend to return from holiday feeling even more drained. Organizing and going on a wellness trip where you can enliven all your senses, have long and relaxing spa days, meditate, and do yoga will enable you to find a greater purpose beyond tourism. While there are many resorts and wellness destinations around the globe for you to choose from, you still need some basic guidance on how to organize the best international wellness trip. Here is a guide that will get you fully covered.

 

Set a clear ‘relaxing’ objective

You can’t start browsing through various destinations before you figure out what relaxation and mindful wellness trip means for you. You need to have a clear and steady objective of what you want off your trip. For many, it’s the serenity of the ambient, while other factors like comfortable accommodation, beautiful scenery, and fitness amenities are vital. You may want solely to hold or organize spa retreats and offer quality spa treatments and dietary detoxes, so take a notebook and write down your ideas. Once you have everything sorted out, you can search for an international location.

Wellness Trip 2

Look for a lucrative destination

There is an abundance of gorgeous and peaceful wellness retreats around the globe that simply allure an individual to stay there forever. When you need to organize a wellness trip on your own, you need to be careful with your choice. Start your search by narrowing down the places that can fit within your budget. Envisioning impossible outcomes will only make you disappointed. Consider going somewhere touristy, but don’t opt for renowned retreats but many somewhere off the beaten path. Also, go off the popular seasons when there is less crowd. Chances are that you will get the most of your trip and more.


Coordinate trip wisely

Now for some technical matters. Firstly, if you are travelling by car either solo or with a buddy or two, you should find out how to drive internationally. This means that you must check the maps, roads, read the regulations, learn some foreign rules, get the necessary papers, check the rental possibilities if necessary, and others. Next, you have to schedule the sessions, provide suitable accommodation, confirm and reconfirm the timings, and of course, coordinate meals and make sure that dietary are taken care of.

Wellness Trip 3


Deal with the logistic upfront

Organizing an international wellness trip requires patience and diligence, but above all meticulous logistics. Besides transportation, transfer, meals, and food, you need to organize productive wellness activities that will enable you and the whole group to make the most out of your healthy travels. Whether you set your heart out to the beach, mountain, or a place within the rainforest, if you don’t clearly set the timing of the sessions, length, and find the right yoga teachers and trainers, you will be in for more stress. Therefore, in order not to get busy with the organization on your trip, deal with important matters upfront so that you can utterly unwind in your wellness trip.


Seek for physical tranquillity and activity

Going to a distant place where the sheer environment can help you improve your health and wellbeing is the key to an international wellness trip. Sometimes even if the surrounding can make you feel re-energized and uplifted, it may not be enough. Find a place where you can get active and have the ability to relax as well. Have some other activity in mind besides doing yoga and meditating. Think hiking, swimming, or stargazing. Organize some extra curriculum activities like writing, drawing and art sessions, learn how to play an instrument or how to cook some special international dish.

Wellness Trip 4


Have a light agenda and short sessions

You don’t want to do yoga for 5 hours in the morning and then sit and meditate for another five. No, you must set light and mindful agenda so that everyone can get the most out of their stay. If you are in a different timezone, pay attention to the jet lag that someone might be experiencing. Let your yoga or other spa sessions last up to 2 hours each or 45min of some other demanding workout. Have a short break where you would chat, drink green tea and meditate. In the afternoon, you can do other activities, roam around, and in the evening gather up to share experiences.

You aim should be to make this international wellness trip as restful and rejuvenating as possible. By following the above-mentioned guidelines you will certainly accomplish that and have a mindful and regenerating experience.

 

About the Author

Morgan Elliot

Morgan Rose Elliott is an aromatherapist, yoga instructor, animal lover, and a happily married mother of two. She enjoys reading biographies and writing poems, sunny days on the beach and any shape and form of vanilla. Crazy about the ’80s, her favorite band is Duran Duran and she is obsessed with Netflix original Stranger things.

https://twitter.com/MorganRoseElli1