Travel

6 Tips for Travel
Aug13

Ever suffer from travel anxiety? Everyone does from time to time! And there’s a good reason for it. When you are setting off to travel, there is a ton to think through: planning, scheduling, follow-through. It’s enough to overwhelm even the most level-headed and organized adventurers. 

The important part is this: breathe, stay calm. Great, now let’s talk about execution. These 6 tips for travel planning will help you stay on top of everything that needs to be done, stress free!

Set Up Deal Alerts 

First of all, we want to make sure you get the best deal possible. Last-minute plans can sometimes backfire and have you paying premium prices to snag travel or lodging. Use travel apps or even Google alerts to watch for the best possible prices before you confirm. For example, we sometimes have deals at PLACE—so be sure to sign up for our newsletter in case something pops up. 

Read Reviews for Insight 

Thanks to platforms like Yelp and Google Reviews you can get the inside scoop on everything from restaurants to airlines to hotels to local shops. Before you plan a big day, check out what people are saying…about everything! It’s much easier to pivot before you’ve made a reservation (or worse—shown up to the door).

Start Your Packing List Early

A last-minute packing list is bound to lead to someone forgetting something important. Start your packing list a few days or a week early. This way, you have plenty of time to remember missing items, cut back on clutter, and buy anything you don’t yet have. 

Delegate Your Tasks 

One person CAN plan a whole trip alone…but they shouldn’t have to. Travelling in a group? Have one person step in as the team leader. They can assign an even number (or effort-level) of tasks to everyone in the group. Someone can be in charge of packing the beer cooler and someone else can be the money collected to ensure everyone chips in. 

Take Out Cash

Credit and debit cards are all fine and dandy but some emergency cash is a must. Have bills as well as change. You never know whether you might need a payphone (remember those?), require public transport fare, or encounter a cash-only business. Obviously, carry the currency relevant to where you are going. 

Use Expert Advice 

Need help planning and getting the best deal? It’s okay to ask for help from an expert! Read travel blogs or books, reserve time with a tour guide, use a travel agent, or talk to the manager of whatever venue you are staying at. They have plenty of experience to guide you, answer questions, and make suggestions for must-do activities. (YES—you can call us for advice, too!)

Want more adventure advice, wanderlust stories, and tips for travel? Be sure to follow our blog

Post covid travel tips
Jul23

The U.S. and Canada are thinking about opening their borders this fall and, as vaccinations continue to roll out, people are thinking about traveling again. However, health and safety should always remain first and foremost important. Here are a few post-COVID travel tips to consider before you plan your next big B.C. road trip.

Be Considerate of Your Neighbours

One thing we have all learned over the past year and a bit is how important it is to respect those around you and the community in general. This can manifest by leaving your space cleaner than you found it and giving the people around you a little extra elbow room when you can afford to.

An Extra Wash Hits the Spot

The importance of handwashing and surface washing should outlive the pandemic! Keeping your hands and common surfaces clean can help stop the spread of germs related to the common cold or seasonal flu. Plus, it’s just a nice thing to do for those that might come in contact with you.

Be Kind to Service Workers

While you travel, you’ll come in contact with desk clerks, hotel staff, shop owners, and city workers. These are the essential workers who helped you throughout the pandemic. Please continue to be kind and treat them with respect.

Expect the Best, Prepare for the Worst

This is a lesson that can carry into travel, pandemics, and life planning in general. Going for a road trip? Pack a first aid kit and a foil blanket. Hopefully you’ll never need them but it’s always better to overprepare than under.

Take Care of Your Body

Whether at home or on the move, you should always make time to eat well, exercise, get some sun, and drink lots of water. You can follow these practices even while on vacation. Take a local hike. Shop for local fresh produce to make healthy meals and snacks. Carry a reusable water bottle in your car or travel bag.

Pay Attention to Travel & Location Updates

And the final of our post-COVID travel tips: Even where there’s no pandemic to consider, it’s important to stay up-to-date on the happenings of your destination location. For example, if you are traveling to B.C. this summer you might want to check up on forest fires, water quality warnings (in certain areas), and heatwaves.

Have more questions, ready to book a vacation cottage, or just want to chat? Feel free to contact us.

B.C. Forest Fires
Jul09

The truth is that B.C. is both heavily forested (which we love) and can be incredibly hot and dry (perfect for beaches)—but sometimes these two beautiful sentiments combine into something nefarious: B.C. forest fires. First of all: take a deep breath! You don’t necessarily have to cancel your trip and forest fire-related casualties are exceedingly rare (and more likely for emergency personnel like police and firefighters).   

That being said, here are 6 things you should know about B.C. forest fires before your trip.  

Many, Many Forest Fires are Human-Started  

This is the sad truth. So many forest fires could be prevented each year if campers, hikers, visitors, and locals worked together to adhere to fire safety rules. Never throw a cigarette butt on the ground; listen to fire bans in the area; make sure your fire pit is completely extinguished before going to sleep; never leave live flames unattended.   

B.C. Averages 1,352 Wildfires Annually, but…  

Many of them are small, quickly put out, or far away from human civilization of any kind. In fact, forest fires are a natural and important part of the ecosystem. It clears away dead matter from the forest floor and makes room for fresh, new growth. Sometimes controlled burns (human started and monitored) are used to “clean up” the ecosystem on purpose.   

COVID-19 Actually Decreased the Number of Fires in B.C.  

This is mainly because people were not travelling and therefore were not lighting fires or leaving them unattended. As stated before, please, please take care while camping or hiking so that you aren’t the cause of an unexpected blaze.   

Many B.C. Cities and Towns Are Not Affected  

Many areas don’t get that many forest fires and the most you see will be a bit of smoke in the sky. You will still be able to be outside, go to beaches, attend events, camp, and go about your daily life. The only time you need to take caution is when there is an air quality warning.  

You Can Track Current Wildfire Activity  

Worried about whether a fire will pop up in your area? You can track B.C. wildfire activity yearly using the B.C. government’s wildfire dashboard. Fires are very common but most of them are so small or isolated that you won’t even notice them during your stay.   

La Casa Resort Will Inform You of Noteworthy Fires Beforehand  

We send out newsletters that encompass everything from local events in the area to wildfire warnings. If something is amiss, we’ll let you know well ahead of time. This includes anything like water advisories, major highway shutdowns, and anomalous weather events. We strive to keep you informed all throughout your trip!   

Always be fire safe but also keep in mind that fires are a normal part of the first lifecycle and are usually not cause for alarm at all. Still have questions? Give us a call at La Casa Cottage Resort.  

You might also like Beach Safety for B.C. Summer Trips: 5 Quick Tips

Travel YouTubers
Jun18

Can’t travel just yet? Spending your time bingeing YouTube and Netflix in the meantime? Why not combine your wanderlust with your vlogger addiction? Here are 12 travel YouTubers we are loving right now. 

1. Kold

Sam Kolder is a Canadian travel junkie armed with a 6K drone for stunning landscape shots and areal views of his destinations—when he doesn’t accidentally break it, that is! Some of his most popular videos include 5 Days in Bali and My Best Drone Clips (2019).

2. Lost LeBlanc

Canadain Christian LeBlanc did what many of us only dream about: quitting his day job to travel the world. His channel launched in 2015 and since then he has been creating a mix of inspiring content and how-to guides. 

3. Sailing La Vagabonde

Couple Elayna and Riley are Australian travel YouTubers with the dream of circumnavigating the globe by sailboat…initially having no clue of how to sail. They have now sailed over 90,000nm each across many oceans, making videos along the way. 

4. Wolter’s World

Mark and Jocelyn are a wife-husband team who travel with their kids and make all the big touristy mistakes and warn you about them so that you don’t have to. This channel is down-to-earth and filled with the best travel tips. 

5. Hey Nadine

Nadine Sykora’s charming and personable channel boasts videos on travel hacks, tips and advice, packing guides, destination ideas, videos about food, and more. Check out her Things to Inspire You series for the best binge-worthy travel content.

6. Sorelle Amore

Sorelle Amore is a fun and quirky travel guide with relatable content about everything from art, sustainability, being a digital nomadic, and even how to take the best selfies. Viewers love her honesty and ability to not take life too seriously. 

7. Fearless and Far 

YouTuber Mike Corey is an adventure travel specialist with videos about exploring abandoned places, attending the craziest festivals and celebrations around the globe, and observing isolated tribes. 

8. The Planet D

Married couple Dave and Deb produce a weekly video series about their adventures around the globe—they have visited 110 countries and counting. They were named a top travel influencer by Forbes magazine.

9. Mark Wiens

Mark is a food-centric traveller who offers his captivated audience cuisine reviews as well as general travel tips. Watch him hunt down the best Thailand seafood, sample Iranian street food, and meet the “pajama chef.”

10. Drew Binsky

Drew has been chronicling his journey to visit every country in the world (currently at 194/197!) with video content that is more like mini-documentaries than typical influencer stuff. He currently holds two world records: the most UNESCO Heritage sites visited within 24-hours and the fastest recorded suitcase packing. 

11. I Am Aileen

Aileen Adalid left her job at age 21 to become a full-time entrepreneur, blogger, and vlogger. This travel and adventure guru has even been featured on BBC, National Geographic, Business Insider, Cosmopolitan, and Lonely Planet.

12. Brooke Saward

Brooke lives out of her suitcase and makes her living as a writer and travel influencer. She started with a popular blog but has now broken into videos/vlogs on YouTube. She wrote and published World of Wanderlust with Penguin Random House in 2016.

Who are your favourite travel YouTubers? Ready to experience the joy of traveling yourself? Reach out to us at La Casa Cottage Resort and we can help you find the perfect vacation spot around beautiful British Columbia. 

Kelowna Cabin Rentals
May14

The Okanagan Valley is a perfect vacation location in Canada. People from across Canada and around the world travel to British Columbia to enjoy the hot weather, expansive beaches, and vibrant wineries. You might be looking for Kelowna cabin rentals as an affordable and personable alternative to corporate hotel brands. If so, there are a few things you should consider before booking your cabin rental.  

What is Your Budget for the Trip?

Vacation budgets vary wildly and also depend on how long you’ll be staying and what type of activities you’ll be participating in while there. Kelowna is a great destination because there are plenty of free activities to partake in, like exploring the local hiking trails.   

Sit down with a spreadsheet or checklist and brainstorm how much you are looking to spend on lodgings, food, activities, and travel expenses like gas or plane tickets. Remember: You’ll be spending a lot of time at your rental cottage and will want it to be comfortable, spacious, and safe. You can skimp on your food and drink budget but it’s best not to skimp on where you’ll be sleeping.   

Regardless, there are vacation cottages in Kelowna ranging from $100/night upward so you are sure to find something that fits within the range you set for yourself.  

How Many People Are Staying with You?

This will help you determine how many beds and rooms are needed within your vacation cottage of choice. More rooms tend to have a higher expense. Fewer rooms will allow you to save money. See if anyone in your group is willing to sleep on a couch or pullout bed—these tend to be located in the den area and don’t add much extra cost.   

1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom cottages are pretty reliably available, as they tend to be the more popular sizes. However, if you are planning an event or traveling in a large group, you can look into event rentals that hold a lot more—up to 6 bedrooms with 26 sleeping spots!   

You can also consider splitting your group up into smaller, more manageable parties and booking separate rentals for each clan. For something like that, you might want to seek out a rental cottage community so that you are still in close proximity to one another. 

Are Pets Allowed at Your Cabin?

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Not every vacation property allows pets so be sure to call ahead and get a clear yes or no answer before you pack Fido up in her kennel!  

Are There Budget Vacation Deals Available?

Watch for booking deals for longer stays, last-minute rental discounts, or off-season specials to save a bit of money on your per-night rate. The best way to do this is to follow local Kelowna tourism companies on social media, where they are most likely to post and advertise these sorts of things. For example, you can find La Casa Cottages on Facebook and Instagram!  

How Well-Cared for are the Kelowna Cabin Rentals?

Check online ratings, look at photos (and ask how recent they are), and email the cottage owner about cleaning regulations between guests. You don’t want to be stuck in a place that looks like it’s falling apart, nor do you want to be deceived by interior images that are way out of date. Don’t be afraid to push a bit here and get all the information you need to make the best decision.  

Does it Come with Any Perks (pool access, WIFI)?

Not all cottage rentals will come with extras, nor should they, but it’s always a nice thing to have! Ask about:  

  • Free WIFI access   
  • Private yard space (with furniture?)   
  • Pool access   
  • Firepit access  
  • BBQ access  
  • Boardgames   
  • DVDs or Netflix login  
  • Any other perks you can think of 
  • How Long are You Staying? Is It During Busy Season?

If you are planning a longer trip or booking for the busy season (summertime, holidays, and so on) then be sure to start looking far, far in advance to make sure you get what you need before it sells out.   

Do You Need Some Expert Help Picking between Kelowna Cabin Rentals?  

Give us a call or email at La Casa Cottages if you need help picking a cabin or cottage rental that works best for you. We have several luxury cottages available in West Kelowna with a lakefront view and easy access to beaches, parks, wineries, and more.