Category Archives: Travel Hacks

Finding the best web hosting with SiteGround

So you want to become a travel blogger. With such high saturation on the internet it’s important to find  your niche and plan where you hope to take blogging. In the end you want to stand out from all the competition.

Travel blogging is a great way to get started on the web to get your stories out there for others to hear and learn from. I’ve always wanted to share my tales, adventures, and photos for the interested travel enthusiasts  but it can be tricky when you come home with a suitcase full of goodies, Instagram filtered photos, and a few interested souls waiting to hear what you did and where you went! Once I saw for myself that it’s not so easy for everyone to understand all the fine tuned details of my Balinese soul searching tour I needed to dig a little deeper to share my experiences online.

Finding the best web hosting is one of the most important ways to getting started with this dream. My good friend Joan mentioned to me SiteGround when finding the best web hosts starting with choosing your domain.

From the beginning SiteGround was outstanding with their customer service skills and timely replies to my many questions. When I was setting up my account sitting in a Starbucks in Curacao I was instantly on live chat with a few representatives to help guide me through this process on live chat. It was awesome! I began to think of the bit of mess I got myself in a few weeks prior being on hold for fifteen minutes for a different web hosting domain and I thought to myself, “I really don’t have time for this.” To have limited time off the ship as a crew member I don’t have the time to be on hold in a weak wifi area, sorry.

If you are looking for top notch quality customer service then you must begin with the best domain web hosting out there! SiteGround is the best way to get the ball rolling in the blogging world. And the best thing is: Once you have your domain you still have access to a live chat representative in the case you have more questions you need answered.

Below are the steps to follow to easily get your domain
  1. Choose your web hosting plan

How to Use Hosting Sign Up Step 1

2. Choose your domain name

How to Use Hosting Sign Up Step 2

3.  Review and complete purchase information

How to Use Hosting Sign Up Step 3

 

Earning travel miles for everyday purchases

Choosing the best credit card

There are so many different kinds of credit cards to choose from. The choices to choose from are overwhelming if you don’t know what benefits you are looking for. Earning travel miles for everyday purchases is super helpful when you go to book your next trip. BINGO. You already have some air miles to apply to your flight to either reduce the cost of the ticket or upgrade your seat.

Finding a credit card that will earn you sky miles for your everyday purchases is a step in the right direction of benefits if you are after all a travel fanatic. With so many different sign up benefits it’s overwhelming to narrow it down to the right one.

American Express Skymiles (Delta Skymiles)

The final decision comes in choosing the one that will reap you the most benefits such as skymiles, free checked bag, or tens of thousands of bonus sky miles for spending a certain amount of money within a month span. Sound great? Those were the perks I saw on a poster for the American Express Skymiles (with Delta) card while I was on a layover one of the busiest airport hubs in the U.S.; Atlanta! I quickly signed up and immediately reaped excellent benefits with my first purchase.

Two years ago I was shopping around for flights to the Philippines searching for the best deals giving me the shortest layover. I found a super cheap round trip flight on delta  ($780). With a super cheap RT ticket I also got a $50 credit towards my balance and a free checked bag.
Benefits
When you spend your first $1,000.00 in your first three months you get $50 off your credit card balance and 30,000 Delta Skymiles. Out of all the major airlines that I fly on I always prefer Delta because miles never expire. There are no gimmicks or hassles when you get these miles and that helps me out a lot if I want to keep my miles for a rainy day in the case that I find a really good deal on flights. While my job usually flies me to join me ship with Delta I gain points each time I begin and finish a contract.

Travel Hack

You earn 1 point for every dollar spent when charged to your AMEX and 2 points when charged directly through Delta purchases. How do you find yourself earning more points? Using the card for most purchases and paying off your bill on time.

With regular use of my AMEX skymiles card I am adding to my points that I can use for future Delta flights. This has benefited me a great deal with two free flights I have cashed in on with the help of gaining 20,000 skymiles when I spent my first $1,000.00 using AMEX. I flew from Miami to NYC one way for free with my miles and only paid $5 in taxes. When I was visiting my best friend in Seattle I fly to Westchester from SEA for FREE, again only paying $5.60 in taxes. It was a red eye flight with a connection in ATL but still, it was FREE!

To Sum  it all Up
If you are a frequent international traveler this card offers no fees for international transactions so you don’t have to worry about fees for using it abroad. I learned this one the hard way when I used one of my credit cards in Korea a few years ago so frequently without knowing I was being charged each time I made a transaction.  The annual fee for the AMEX skymiles card is waived for your first year.  If you want to continue using this card it will set you back $95 into your second year. I earned so many miles with this credit card and got myself two free flights along the way. With the only downfall being that you have to pay a $95 annual fee after your first year this card is a win-win!

My personal travel style: super ‘travel’ savvy

A local kimbap shop in rural South Korea

My personal travel style would have to be titled “travel savvy” while still being on a budget. Enjoying local foods, cafes, markets all at the local level instead of finding “western” places. When I am traveling I cannot afford to plunge into expensive hotels however I steer very far from backpackers and cheap hostels to my favorite, airbnb.. Let me explain.

There are a lot of places to see in the world. There are a lot of things that I have done and more that I want to do. With that said, whenever I am traveling I find unique ways to cut back on travel costs while still traveling in comfort while enjoying all that’s around me. Let me give you a perfect example.

Two years ago I spent a week in New South Wales, Australia on my own and my main focus was Hunter Valley and seeing the Blue Mountains. First thing first I did a little research on public transportation in that area. Renting a car, organizing a private tour and hiring a taxi was out of the question. In the Sydney Tourist Information Center they actually recommended me joining a tour but when I found out what that would cost me I refused. I knew there was a much cheaper way.

I began my adventure in Sydney Central Train station with a one way ticket booked to Katoomba which was roughly a two hour train ride through gorgeous scenery and mountains before reaching my final destination. The train ticket cost me no more than 20$ Australian dollars. I pre booked a youth hostel ( but now I always travel with Airbnb) that had good reviews right in town near the train station and a two day hop on hop off red bus that toured me all around the Blue Mountains regions. Two days was the perfect amount of time to see all of the beautiful highlights that this region had to offer.  My rule of thumb is to always compare my dining options and find the best deal to get the most for my “bucks”.

I never cut back my spending on foods to eat a cup of noodles or cheap snacks instead of local meals to save a couple bucks. However, you will see me eating in s super fancy type restaurant. Instead what I do is sort out all of my options of places to dine locally by asking around and using tripadvisor to steer me in the right direction. As a lover of food and fresh ingredients I absolutely love trying all the foods that are native to where I am visiting.

Do you travel on a tight budget? What kinds of goods do you find your cutting back on? What do you not mind spending money on?  I would love to know!