Archives for November 2007

PSP, more than an in-flight magazine

More frequent travelers are finding handheld entertainment devices more fun than the typical in-flight magazine or local paper. In this digital-dependant world we are more accustomed to instant gratification when it comes to entertainment and there is something about a video game that offers it. Much like the popularity of personal TV sets in each seat, travelling with a personal gaming device keeps you occupied from take off to landing. Check out these popular gaming devices:

Nintendo DS and DS Lite
With impressive 3D rendered graphics and ultra-bright screens, Nintendo DS Lite makes it easy to play even when the cabin lights are down. It has touch screen technology so no fiddling with buttons and two 3 inch screens so you have more room to play.
Games to try: Legend of Zelda; Brain Age; and Final Fantasy XII Revenant Wings

Sony Playstation Portable

The Playstation portable is great for gaming but is also optimized for music, video, photo, internet, and wireless connectivity. It’s like a mini computer for all the stuff you love. The wide screen LCD brings to life the over 135 games available for single player gaming.
Games to try: Madden NFL 08; Naruto Ultimate Ninja Hero; and Grand Theft Auto

PC Gaming
Don’t forget your laptop! Chances are you travel with it anyhow. There are loads of awesome games that you can play right on your PC. It might be a little more cumbersome to lug out on the plane but for those long treks there are lots of great games you can buy for your PC.
Games to try: Flight Simulator X; Age of Empires III – The Asian Dynasties; and Halo 3

If you are all geared up and ready to game there are a few other things you will need to buy:

  • Headset – not everyone on the plane wants to hear you
  • Carrying Case – Check out the various cases that come with your gaming device, it will protect the hardware and keep everything together

One Day in London

So you’re traveling to London on business and have a day to spare. Or perhaps you are traveling across the world and need to stopover in London for a night. London is one of those cities most of us find our way through at one time or another and never seem to have enough time to see it all. Here are some short itineraries developed by various travel enthusiasts on making the most of London in a day:

The London Guide

Here is a great place to start if you want to be on foot for a full day. What they call the “Grand Itinerary” walks you past the Tower of London, Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Tate Gallery, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and The Thames. Almost the entire walk is along the Thames River on a wonderful path so it’s easy to follow and lovely in decent weather. See full map and notes.

London Guide also recommends one day trips that aren’t on foot but easily accessible via the tube (subway) called The Main Gigs and the Culture Vulture

London for Free

This site also offers nine self-guided walks around London including themed itineraries to match your interests:

Frommer’s One Day in London

This ambitious itinerary includes Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square, the National Gallery, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London and a night of theatre. Make sure to break it up and head back to your hotel for a rest in between.

Hop on a bus with The Original Tour

Of course you can always hop on a traditional London double-decker! The Original Tour (Yellow Route) takes you to the best of London’s sights including Buckingham Palace, Piccadilly Circus, The National Gallery, Downing Street, Big Ben, London Bridge, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, The Tower of London & Westminster Abbey. Check out other tour routes.

Get over it, jetlag tips

Your eyes are burning, feet swollen, legs sore – yup, it’s been a long flight and now you have to suffer through jetlag. Jetlag can include tiredness, dehydration, disorientation, swelling of limbs, colds and flu. From a three hour to 13 hour time difference jetlag is a reality.

According to Wikipedia, “When traveling across a number of time zones, the body clock goes out of sync with the destination time, and so it experiences daylight and darkness contrary to the rhythms to which it has grown accustomed. Jet lag occurs because the body cannot immediately realign these rhythms.”

So how do you get your body back in sync? Like everything else, it will entirely depend upon the individual. If you’re a teenager who can drink all night and still get up at 8AM for class, well chances are your clock is off track anyhow. But if you are like the rest of us, try some of these tips:

The British Airways Jetlag Advisor

This is a nifty little tool BA has created to help determine what your sleep patterns are, what time it is in your hometown vs. where you are staying and what you need to do to set your clock right. It depends highly on the theory that jetlag is primarily caused by daylight and darkness. Test out the BA Advisor.

Adjust your in-flight experience

This is by far my favourite solution and is recommended on many travel website. Rob from the Gorp exert advice panel recommends you set your watch to the time of your destination as soon as you board and adjust what you do on the place to match it. For example, if it’s midnight when you board and will be morning when you arrive then sleeping the whole flight will align your clocks better. If the opposite is true, then stay awake for as much of the flight as you can. It is also recommended you align your meals to your destination time. Read full article.

Take a pill

There is a drug for everything. No-Jet-Lag is a homeopathic remedy, a herbal tablet developed in New Zealand that remains popular. Simply chew one tablet before take-off and again at landing. Visit No Jet Lag to find out more.

All about wrinkles. Pack, steam and hang your clothes

I hate ironing. I hate it so much that I actually only have an iron in the house for when my mother comes to visit. However when you travel a long distance with your clothes stuffed in a bag, even the most wrinkle free clothing needs help. Here are some of tried and true methods for keeping your clothes wrinkle free when you travel:

Shower steam it

I’ve seen this many times and it works wonderfully for shirts and dresses. Simply hang your outfit in the bathroom while you take a shower and leave it in there for a short while afterwards with the door shut until the steam subsides. The steam from the shower will help work out any wrinkles or folds in your outfit. This is a simple and practical way to quickly give your outfit a fresh look.

Travel steamer

While the shower steam method is simple and convenient, it doesn’t work out all wrinkles. If you are very determined to eliminate all wrinkles, a Hand held Travel Steamer might be right for you. These handy tools fit nicely in your suitcase and offer you excellent control to work out wrinkles and refresh your clothes on the road. Here are two popular ones:

The hotel iron

Still the most effective is the hotel iron. Most hotels have irons in the room or certainly in housekeeping. Ironing is a pain but there is no question it works.

Hang your clothes

One of the best things you can do when you arrive at your destination is hang your clothes! The sooner you take them out of your suitcase and let them hang, the better they will look when it’s time to wear them.

Pack Smart

Keep your clothes in good shape by packing them right. Check out these handy websites for packing additional tips: