Travel Games for Kids

"Are we there yet?" If you have kids, this is probably a phrase you've heard a thousand times in a car or on a airplane. While there are always challenges when traveling with children, a little preparation goes a long way. 

One suggestion is to head to your local dollar store and buy 20 different toys. Pull out a new toy when you first start the trip. After the kids get bored with the first toy, pull out the next one. By the time they've gone through all the toys, a good amount of time will have passed and you'll be that much closer to your destination.

Another great tip is to purchase some games specifically for travel. has some great travel games to keep the kids occupied from creative play toys like the Crayola Color Wonder Travel Tote or the AquaDoodle Travel Doodle to memory games like Melissa & Doug Flip to Win Memory Game.  

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The last tip is bringing an iPad or tablet. These amazing little devices can play the kids favorite movies or you can download a ton of free games that will hold their attention for hours. 

5 Important Travel Tips When Visiting Panama

By Jackie Lange

Panama is one of the true gems of Central America.  I'm an American who's been living here for almost a year and the country's beauty and diverse culture continues to amaze me every day.  Traveling to Panama is so much fun!  There are plenty of things to see and places to explore.  Below are 5 important travel tips to that I'd like to share with you.  Let my own experiences guide you in traveling to this amazing country and truly having an enjoyable stay.

  • Travel light - It's really an advantage to just travel with one carry-on bag and one personal bag.  You'll be able to get through customs and immigrations much faster with no checked-in baggage.  A tour to this country usually covers traveling from Panama City to other towns, so traveling with a light suitcase would really be a plus.  Most of the places covered by the tour have laundry facilities that you can avail for a small fee.
  • Visit the country's famous canal - Your trip won't be complete if you don't visit the Panama Canal.  You can take on a canal cruise and traverse the famous Gaillard Cut.  Learn the history of the canal and find out why it significantly contributes to the country's economy.  While you're there, you might also try experiencing the locks the canal is famous for, on a ferry-boat.
  • Eat local food - Try the country's delicious chicken soup called the "Sancocho" and many other tasty dishes like the "Yuca Frita", "Pescado", "Patacones" and the "Carimanola".  You can also try eating what they call the "Comida Corriente" which means meal of the day.  This constitutes rice accompanied by beans and meat (a choice of chicken, beef or pork).  Drink as well "Seco", the country's alcoholic beverage that is made from sugar cane.
  • Be a responsible traveler - When going on a hike for instance, try not to get carried away by the beauty of nature and create a new track.  If you are not familiar with the country's rainforest, it won't be such a good idea to wander off on your own.  Stay with your group as getting lost in the rainforest can be extremely dangerous.
  • Stay for 1 more week - Tour packages just often include a 5-day and 4-night stay which is definitely not enough.  If you extend your trip, you'll be able to meet and visit American expats who are residing permanently in Panama and spend more days at the country's beaches, waterfalls and rainforest.  You can also do more shopping as the items that you can buy in the country are definitely a bargain.
From the amazing skyscrapers and modern splendor of Panama City to the relaxed lifestyle in the provinces, Panama is such a beautiful country that's truly worth visiting.  Many tourists are often surprised to find that modern conveniences abound in a country that's considered as third world.  Panama is therefore so full of surprises.  It may not be as rich and modern as the US, Canada or UK but the country has its own unique appeal that's truly worth a thousand words.

Jackie Lange is thrilled to be living in Panama and wants you to experience the same thing. Learn how this can be possible by visiting, and discover the real beauty of Panama through your own eyes.

Article Source: 5 Important Tips When Visiting Panama

If you need more information on visiting Panama, be sure to check out the latest Panama travel guides on

The gift of travel for children

The gift of travel is priceless. It is so inspiring to see a mom like Melika Nixon planning a trip with her sons despite one of them having serious medical issues. This is what inspires us at NervousTraveler to get out there and see the world. Happy holidays!

By Katia Hetter, CNN

If Melika Nixon has a free moment and a few extra dollars, she's planning a trip with her 7-year-old twin boys. Even though one of her sons has serious medical issues, including a kidney transplant and feeding tube, it doesn't stop this Huntsville, Alabama, family. The trip list has included Asheville, North Carolina; Atlanta; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Chicago; Louisville, Kentucky; Nashville and the Bahamas.

"Travel is a way of life for us," says Nixon, a single mother. "It is a way for us to explore cultures, people, food and places, and to see that there is more to life than just our way of doing things. Travel is a way for me to teach my children respect (for) others and appreciation for life."

They also learn to take care of themselves in new places. "They learn that exploring is a must. They learn to ask questions. They learn how to navigate cities. First and foremost, they have to know the name of our hotel and how to get back to it if they were to ever get lost. They learn that life must be lived and not watched on TV or played on a video game."

Put something under the tree
This holiday season, as parents struggle to figure out what toys to give their children, consider giving the gift of travel. 

Read the full CNN article here for their suggestions: Give children the gift of travel

Holiday Travel Tips from USA Today

Holiday travel is always a bit crazy. But these travel tips from USA Today will help you ease into the holiday and reduce your travel stress.

Travel check list

  • Give yourself plenty of time to endure jams, construction slowdowns and bad weather.
  • Check the weather at your destination and along the route.
  • Check your flight status before you leave for the airport. Often airlines will institute flexible cancellation and re-booking policies when weather snarls holiday plans.
  • Get to the airport early. Security lines will be long as planes will packed - averaging 86% full on peak days around Christmas and New Year's Eve, according to Airlines for America.
  • Carry key travel phone numbers. You could be talking to your travel agent who can make changes for you while others wait in long lines at the airport counter, Hunter says.
  • Have some hotel apps on your phone. If you are delayed, exhausted or snowbound, you can find a room fast and get off the road.
Read the full article here:
Holiday travelers should go early, carry a back-up plan

Secure Your Home for the Holidays

The winter holidays are an active time for thieves, who prey on houses that might stand empty for days. If you plan to spend some time away from home, your house should appear as if you could return at any minute. Here are tips to deter intruders.
  • Burglar-proof your home. Lock gates to the backyard with a padlock; install motion-sensitive lights on the porch or in the backyard; and keep plants trimmed away from windows and doors so thieves don't have a place to hide.
  • Put your interior lights on timers so they go on at an appropriate time in the morning, off during the day, and on again in the evening, to make it look like you're coming and going at your normal times.
  • Park a car in the driveway to give the impression you're home. Give a neighbor a key and ask him to move the car every now and then.
  • Have neighbors pick up your newspapers and mail, or stop delivery for the duration of your trip.

14 Things Not To Worry About When Traveling

Stress Free Vacations
Great article from the Huffington Post: 
Traveling can be hectic, especially around the holidays. Between the TSA lines (or the anticipation of the TSA lines) and delayed flights, travelers have many reasons to be weary. 
No matter. In trying to calm travelers as the chaotic holiday travel season continues, we've come up with a list of 14 things to not worry about while traveling. Thanks in part to an onslaught of technology, here are things you no longer have to worry about back home while enjoying your time on the road.
Read the full Huffington Post article here.

Rockets' Royce White to get his own 'Madden Cruiser', travel by bus in 2012-13

In an effort to deal with his anxiety disorder, the Houston Rockets will allow Royce White to travel by bus for much of the 2012-13 season.
The Houston Rockets first-round draft pick, whose struggles with anxiety disorder have been well documented, will be traveling like the retired head coach and broadcaster after agreeing to a handshake deal with the team that will have him hitting the road for much of the season.

Madden's fear of flying led the NFL legend to acquire a customized coach-bus known as the 'Madden Cruiser' for getting around the country. White, who has already missed a portion of training camp due to his anxiety disorder and his own fears of flying, will also be traveling by bus - transportation that the multi-talented 6-foot-8 will be providing for himself.

Read the full article here: 

Rockets' Royce White to get his own 'Madden Cruiser', travel by bus in 2012-13

NervousTraveler Guest Post on

Check out my guest post on I provide my top travel tips for planning your trip. 

NervousTraveler's Top Tips for Planning Your Trip

Travel helped me stop being afraid of the world

Andrew McCarthy, an actor whose best-known films include "Pretty in Pink" and "St. Elmo's Fire," is also a travel writer for major magazines and has just written a travel memoir, "The Longest Way Home: One Man's Quest for the Courage to Settle Down."

In this Q&A with Alicia Rancilio from The Associated Press, we learn about McCarthy's travels including traveling with his kids and places he doesn't like to visit. But most importantly, we learn how travel affects McCarthy where he said:
"That sort of changed the way I felt in the world and it helped me stop being afraid of the world.  
Andrew McCarthy on Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. McCarthy, an actor whose best-known films include "Pretty in Pink" and "St. Elmo's Fire," is also a travel writer for major magazines and has just written a travel memoir, "The Longest Way Home: One Man's Quest for the Courage to Settle Down."

You can read the full Q&A with Andrew McCarthy here: 'Travel helped me stop being afraid of the world' 

Top Tips for Safe Travel from Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet recently published a great article with some tips on how to travel safely. Some tips include getting in the habit of looking back when you get up to leave somewhere and keeping your money in separate places. 

You can read all of the great tips here: Lonely Planet's Top Tips for Safe Travel