Nomad by Trade

A travel blog for the kid at heart.

Category: Tips

Mondsee, Austria - Travel mistakes, how to avoid travel mistakes, and how to recover from travel mistakes

Our Biggest Travel Mistakes and Disasters and How You Can Avoid Them

Travel mistakes and disasters can happen to anyone, even seasoned travelers. I recently went on a family vacation touring through central Europe and despite the fact that we’ve all logged countless miles and nights on the road, we made lots of travel mistakes. From flight delays to lost luggage to deceitful rental car companies, we had it all. Here are our biggest travel disasters and what you can do to avoid making them yourself (or recover from them).

Travel disaster: Lost luggage

Three members of my family had their luggage lost for the entire 10-day vacation. This included ski gear, Christmas presents, and almost all of their clothes. This was the biggest travel disaster I’ve ever encountered in four years of constant flying. Check out all of the awful details of our lost luggage saga with Air France and Lufthansa.

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Fountain at Detroit Metro Airport

The Best and Worst of US Airports

Everyone who flies regularly eventually comes up with a list of best and worst airports, as well as a healthy set of air travel pet peeves to go along with it. I asked travel bloggers and frequent business travelers about their favorite and least favorite parts of all of the major United States airports. Read on to find out which US airports have the best food, which airports have the worst security lines, and which airports are so hopelessly outdated that all you can do is shake your head in disbelief.

Airports on the list are alphabetized by the major city they serve. (Anything not credited to another contributor is my own two cents based on four years of frequent business flying and an unfortunately expensive personal travel habit.) Make sure to visit the comments at the end to tell me your favorite and least favorite airports!

Atlanta, Georgia – Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)

The terminals in Atlanta are linked by a surprisingly efficient train system which makes making connections way less daunting than you would expect for such a large airport. It’s consistently ranked as the busiest United States airport, so you can get pretty much anywhere in the world from here and have lots of options to be rebooked if your flight is cancelled.

I’d had connections through the Atlanta airport many times before finally having it as my final destination. Just getting to my rental car from the airport took an eternity. Taking the train to the central terminal, finding my way to another train, and then taking that to the garage took well over an hour. All I wanted to do was leave the airport.

The Atlanta airport has almost no capacity to deal with winter weather, so a tiny bit of snow or ice can cause major flight delays.

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best souvenirs from around the world

Travel Bloggers Reveal the Best Souvenirs They’ve Ever Bought

There are plenty of cheap, mass-produced souvenirs for sale in touristy areas – one of my strongest memories of Paris is of constantly declining to buy anything from the guys draped with dozens of mini Eiffel Tower replica keychains – but every once in a while you come across a souvenir that truly connects to you. The perfect souvenir can come in many forms – the functional one that you use regularly for years to come, the sentimental kind that makes you smile fondly every time you glance at it, and the truly unique one that never fails to start a conversation. I asked a group of fellow bloggers from around the world to weigh in on the best souvenirs that they’ve purchased throughout their travels.

Christmas ornament from Germany

By Sage from Everyday Wanderer

Christkindlmarkt ornament - Everyday Wanderer

Photo by Sage from Everyday Wanderer

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Christmas travel gifts for nerds - featuring Star Wars, Star Trek, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, Marvel, and more

Travel Gifts for Nerds and Geeks

In addition to being a die hard traveler, I’m a nerd through and through. The easiest way to get me to buy something is to slap a Star Wars or Harry Potter character on it. I had an awesome time trolling Amazon for the best travel gifts for nerds, geeks, or – as I like to call them – awesome people. Click on their favorite fandom in the table of contents to jump straight to that section.

Note: This  post contains affiliate links, and should you choose to make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. If you use an ad blocker, you may need to disable it for this site in order to see the product images.

Star Wars gifts

I’m kicking off the list with Star Wars gifts for travelers because it’s definitely my biggest fandom. I like it enough to have named my dog Artoo after everyone’s favorite little droid, so you can tell I’m serious.

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Winter travel tips

Winter Travel Tips from Expert Bloggers

Traveling in the winter isn’t the easiest thing to do – you have to pack way more clothing than you do in the summer and are often at the mercy of the weather – but it’s also incredibly  rewarding and if you plan on visiting German Christmas markets, viewing the Northern Lights, or planning a ski vacation, you’ll have to venture out into the cold. These winter travel tips from experienced bloggers should prepare you to face winter weather.

Note: This  post contains affiliate links, and should you choose to make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. If you use an ad blocker, you may need to disable it for this site in order to see the product images.

Pick the right clothes to keep you warm

By Cat from The Compass is Calling

Kemi, Finland - Travel tips for winter

Photo courtesy of Cat from The Compass is Calling

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Be prepared for the beauty of Jokulsarlon with this packing list for winter in Iceland

What to Pack for Winter in Iceland

Winter is an incredible time to visit Iceland, and offers the best chance to see the Northern Lights there. However, winter travel has its challenges and requires a bit more packing than a warm-weather beach vacation. Everything we found in Iceland was expensive, so you’ll want to bring everything you need to avoid making pricey purchases. Here’s my essential packing list for winter in Iceland. I left off the basics like underwear and a toothbrush because I have faith that you’ll know to bring things like that.

Note: This  post contains affiliate links, and should you choose to make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. If you use an ad blocker, you may need to disable it for this site in order to see the product images.

Outer Wear

Waterproof winter coat

This is important. It’s going to be cold. When packing for winter in Iceland, it’s important to set yourself up to be warm and safe by bringing a good coat. I’ve always been partial to Columbia coats like these. Mine is a couple years old now and no longer on sale but I love the ability to separate the two layers in case it warms up a little – and it did on my trip. Columbias also have a metallic heat blanket-style lining that keeps you warm without a lot of bulk. Make sure the outer shell is waterproof, as you’ll likely be encountering snow, rain, or mist from waterfalls. My advice? Pick one of the pretty, bright colors that’ll stand out in pictures, because you’re going to be wearing your coat in most of them.

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Should You Buy A Paris Museum Pass?

Opinions on the value of city passes vary widely, with some people viewing them as tourist scams and others seeing them as huge savings. When I was planning my visit to Paris, I did a lot of research into the options available and decided against the city passes I saw offered and instead bought just the two-day museum passes. The transportation, cruise, and Eiffel Tower add-ons that come with the city passes didn’t provide nearly the same value as the museum passes alone did based on our travel plans.

Paris, France from the top of Notre Dame

View from the top of Notre Dame

Are they right for you?

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Welcome to the world of my wanderings as a professional nomad. I’ve always had a travel bug and was unbelievably lucky to get to travel all over as a kid. A few years ago, I took a job that involved almost constant travel throughout the United States. I’ve been to all but six states so far, and am on a mission to cross the remaining ones off of my list in between taking vacations overseas whenever time and money permit. I’m alone most of the time, but I’ve never let that stop me.

I don’t always get to go to the most fascinating places, and I’m usually only able to explore in the evenings when the best stuff is closed, but along the way, I’ve managed to find a lot of cool stuff. No matter where you may be, there is always something interesting or beautiful you can enjoy if you do just a little digging.

My camera is always at my side, and I take an obscene amount of pictures. I’m getting more into photography as a hobby and recently splurged on a better camera for myself in preparation for my big trip in a couple of months.

I’m a Michigan girl who grew up in the Detroit area. I love going out and finding new things to do around my hometown as well as in other parts of the state.

I’m in a bit of a slow period for work travel right now, but I’m going to kick things off with some posts about my last vacation: to France, Luxembourg, and Belgium.

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