2020 Travel Prep Tips

Traveling is one of the best ways to release stress and get out of the daily grind, however, preparing to hit the road can be stressful. No worries though, we’ve got some great tips to help your travel prep go smoothly:

Take Care of Bills: Finances are the last thing you want on your mind when you’re on the road. Get rid of the stress of missing a payment by booking payments online through your bank. Now you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

Decide on Transportation: Motorcoach? Plane? Train? Car? A mix of them all? There are a variety of great modes of transportation. Do your research and then decide which works best for your desired trip.

Book in Advance: Procrastination will only stress you out when booking travel. Make sure to use a reputable site like BusRates.com well in advance so you can be sure to obtain your desired mode of transportation.

Make a Packing Checklist: There’s nothing worse than feeling like you forgot something. Alleviate that pressure by making a list and checking things off as you pack. A list will give you peace of mind and allow you to enjoy your trip.

Stop Your Mail: If you’ll be gone for a while, make sure to stop your mail and/or ask a neighbor to pick up packages. No need to stress about porch pirates–making arrangements for your letters and parcels will ensure that they make it to you safely once you return home.

As we all have heard a million times, “preparation is key,” and travel is no exception to this rule. Use these five tips to make your 2020 travel prep a breeze and your trip a relaxing success!

How to Crowdsource a transportation event.

Bus travel is the most affordable way to move a large group. Period… but that does not make it any more or less challenging to deal with the question about who is the one who is going to actually sign the contract and put their credit card down on the “table.”

Imagine a group of friends who are looking to head to a concert or festival. Maybe your family is having a reunion and you want to go on a tour of all the places from grandma’s life. Perhaps you area soccer parent trying to coordinate the bus for the team and  their families to head to the out-of-town tournament. Having one person responsible  for the entire fee can be a daunting commitment, but there are options and we are here to help.

Option #1

Sometimes simplicity is the key. Sending and receiving money has never been easier. From services like Venmo to PayPal andFacebook to Apple Chat, sending money to someone is simple and fast. Simply break the total transportation cost into a per seat or per person fee based on the quote and get people to pay before the actual booking. Keep in mind that most companies require a deposit before the charter can be booked, so doing this far enough in advance so that you do not run the risk of not being able to book once you are ready is important.  Hey, as long as you are at it, charge a few bucks for your time in coordinating… maybe you will not end up having to pay anything because you coordinated for the group!

Option #2

The GoFundme.com route: Traditionally crowdsourced services like gofundme.com are thought about when raising money for nonprofits and charitable organizations, but they are, at their core, a tool for a group of people to come together and raise money for an end… even transportation costs. From small groups wanting to put together a night out on the town to a road trip to Disney for a group of 100 students, this tool lets you gather money from those interested in going. When using this, simply start a “campaign” on the funding site,  send out the information that they can donate to the cause, and that the cost is X dollars per person to participate. Simple as that, you are on your way to a crowdsourced trip.

Option #3

PayPal Money Pool. A relative newcomer to the group payment model, but one of the pioneers in the online money game, PayPal now offers a way for people to collect money for a common goal. Simple and effective, this will give you and your group a fast way to get this done. Set a total amount you need to gather, how much each person needs to contribute, and the date it needs to happen by.  See the video below for more information.

Travel Safety Checklist for Cub Scouts

Cub Scouts offer a variety of exceptional, real-world experiences for youngsters and their families. When these experiences require travel, chaperones can sometimes struggle to keep their group of excited little ones safe and accounted for.

Use these tips on your next Cub Scout travel trip to ensure the safety and comfort of the entire group.

Rent a Charter Bus

Many Cub Scout troops depend on parents to get their children to the venue or site of their activity. However, this isn’t always the best strategy, especially when the trip requires out-of-town travel. Renting a charter bus for your Cub Scout travel improves the safety, comfort, and conveience of your trip for everyone involved.

  • Pickup times and locations can get easily confused, leaving little ones stranded while they wait for their ride. With a charter bus, chaperones won’t have to worry about parents losing track of time or getting lost.
  • Arrival times are another common issue. Late arrivals can also result in confusion and stranded scouts. In a charter bus, everyone leaves and arrives together, which means schedules won’t be compromised.
  • There are times when, despite how well chaperones do their duties, a little one can slip away from the group. When this happens in remote locations, a charter bus makes the perfect emergency meeting spot for wayward scouts.

Renting a charter bus is an important part of physical safety on your Cub Scout travel.

Organize Documentation

Documentation is more than a requirement for Cub Scout outings. Keeping the right paperwork in an orderly and accessible fashion makes it easier to respond to emergencies in an effective manner.

  • Have parents and guardians complete a health survey before each trip. Ask them to update data on any conditions the child may have, medications with schedules, and any other pertinent health information like allergies and aversions.
  • Get your traveler’s insurance information before embarking. If an emergency occurs, having their information makes it easier to seek treatment until the parents arrive.
  • Include a snapshot of each student with their information sheet to ensure you’re pulling the right file in an emergency situation.

Instead of lugging around large stacks of documents, take pictures of each page and refer to the photos on your phone when needed.

General Safety Tips for Cub Scout Travel Trips

  • Complete all approved training classes before taking your troop on any trips. These may include youth protection training, first aid/CPR, and a variety of other safety-oriented instructions.
  • Ensure your coach is equipped with all of the emergency equipment you might need on the road and during your trip.
  • Map out the locations of hospitals, police or ranger stations, and other places around your activity location where you may need to seek help.
  • Encourage children to keep a copy of their parents’ contact information on them at all times to ensure they can get help if seperated from the group.

Taking trips with your Cub Scout troop is fun and exciting. These tips ensure that it stays safe as well.

Use these tips to keep your Cub Scout travel trip safe, secure, and problem-free.


6 Tips for Creating a Winning Itinerary for Your Next Group Trip

A perfect 6 step itinerary

Whether you’re chaperoning a group of high school seniors on an overnight field trip or gathering with extended family for a winter vacation, your itinerary is the key to a successful event. Use these tips to ensure everyone enjoys your next group trip.

Give Your Group a Uniform Look

Encourage group members to wear similar outfits to large events. This will help members easily identify each other in crowds. There are a few ways to achieve an attention-grabbing look.

  • Customized t-shirts
  • Clothing that shares a single, bright color
  • Hats or headgear

Choose a style that is comfortable and flexible for everyone.

Rent a Charter Bus

Renting a bus for your group excursion is the perfect way to get everyone to your destination. Bus rental offers some key advantages to group travel planners.

  • Reduce travel costs for each individual.
  • Ensure everyone arrives on-time.
  • Added amenities like a beverage bar or bathroom make travel more comfortable.

Bus travel also gives group members more time to enjoy each other’s’ company.

Create Variety

Make room for variety in the schedule so everyone can explore their own interests.

  • Pick dining locations with several options.
  • Leave free time for members to discover their own entertainment.
  • Include group activities that appeal to the different ages and hobbies in your group.

Personal experience makes travel more fulfilling.

Get Group Input

Talk to your group members during the planning stage to get some ideas. Send out surveys that ask for suggestions to each traveler for:

  • Restaurants
  • Activities
  • Historical monuments
  • Points of interest

Make sure to include the most popular choices in your schedule.

Use Social Media

Create a social media page for your group trip to enhance every stage of your excursion.

  • Before the trip, use the page to gather ideas, distribute information, and keep everyone excited.
  • During the trip, members can communicate via the page while they’re out and about.
  • After the trip, the pictures and posts become a source of memories about the great times.

Designate another travel member as admin to keep the page relevant and appropriate.

Clear Up Money Matters

Don’t let budget issues threaten your group fun. Make sure everyone gets the most out of the trip with good money management practices.

  • Set dates for firm dates for delivery of deposits and other payments. Write them down and let participants know they will be dropped if timely payment is not received.
  • Let travelers know about any cancellation fees or penalties that may apply before accepting funds.
  • Create a list that gives travelers a rough idea of how much money they will need to bring for meals, entry fees, and other travel costs that are not included in their trip costs.

Work out the financial details early in your planning process to avoid unnecessary snags in your travel plans.

These six tips guarantee you’ll create an itinerary that satisfies every member of your group.

Create the perfect itinerary for your next group trip with these six simple planning tips.


5 Must-See San Francisco Attractions Your Group Will not Want to Miss

Some really great San Francisco Attractions

San Francisco’s fascinating history, diverse culture, and natural splendor make it a popular destination for travelers from all over the world.

With so much to do and see, it can be difficult to make a travel plan that covers everything. Here are 5 San Francisco attractions you should add to your next group travel itinerary.

See the City on a Scenic Drive

In 1938, the San Francisco Downtown Association created the 49-Mile Scenic drive. This leisurely loop leads travelers through some of the most interesting parts of the city. Starting at City Hall, the route lets visitors drive through the Dragon Gate in Chinatown, see Coit Tower and Lombard Street, and view the majesty of the Golden Gate Bridge from multiple angles.

This drive takes you past most of the city’s tourist destinations. For short trips, it’s a great way to get a glimpse of what the city has to offer. To enjoy your drive even more, charter a bus for the trip. Upgrade your coach to one with an installed bar for even more fun.

Buy Souvenirs at the Ferry Building Marketplace

Touted as the city’s most famous landmark, the Ferry Building Marketplace has stood in the same spot since 1898. Once used as a hub for traders bringing goods by boat or train, the Ferry Building now holds a variety of attractions and shopping opportunities for visitors. Load up on souvenirs while you enjoy some the best dining the city has to offer.

The Ferry Building also houses a major transfer point for all major public transportation systems that connect San Francisco to the rest of the Bay Area. Use it as a starting point for exploring surrounding cities and neighborhoods.

Experience the Mission District

For even more San Francisco Attractions, the Mission District is San Francisco’s oldest neighborhood. It began in 1776 as the Mission San Francisco de Asiss. Even as the neighborhood shifts and changes with the times, it still retains a great deal of authentic flavor. Walk the streets and sample the foods, street art, and music that comes from nearly 250 years of continuous history.

See the Haight-Ashbury District

San Francisco served as the backdrop to the political, social, and cultural upheavals of the 1960s. Relive the era of Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead, and other influential figures in the hippy culture. Take a Flower Power Walking Tour to learn more about this area’s connection to the social revolutions that still affect our lives today.

Commune with Nature

Take some time to appreciate the natural beauty that surrounds the city of San Francisco. Stow Lake sits in Golden Gate Park and is the largest body of water found in the reserve. Rent a boat to explore the tree-lined waterways, take a ride on a horse-drawn carriage, or just have lunch near the lake while you spot exotic birds and turtles.

Make some space in your schedule to experience these amazing San Francisco Attractions and sights on your next group trip.