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April 2009

April 30, 2009

Spring Break Safety for the Whole Family

Spring break saftey Spring break is a great time for the family to get away from the cold, dark days of winter and have some fun in the sun. Keep your family safe while on your trip by following these tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). If you are planning on hitting the beach for your next family vacation here are a few helpful tips to keep you and your kids safe.


·  Drink plenty of water, non-carbonated and non-alcoholic drinks, even if you do not feel thirsty.

·  Stay within the designated swimming area and ideally within the visibility of a lifeguard

·  Never swim alone.

·  Be aware of rip currents. If you should get caught in a current, don't try to swim against it. Swim parallel to shore until clear of the current.

·  Seek shelter in case of storm. Get out of the water. Get off the beach in case of lightning.

·  Watch out for traffic - some beaches allow cars.


Click here for more helpful family travel tips from RTM.

April 29, 2009

Are You Ready for the Road?

Road_trip_prep_2Even with the price of gas, people are always on the road. Whether you are driving across the state, across the country or just commuting to work, preparing your car for the trip is important.

Prepare the Car
Make sure your car is properly maintained before heading on the road. You should also consider your destination when preparing your car. Difference terrains, such as the beach, the mountains, the desert and urban areas, put different stresses on a vehicle. To learn more about preparing for different environments, check out RTM's Road Trip Preparation article to learn more about each terrain's requirements.

Continue reading "Are You Ready for the Road?" »

April 28, 2009

Europe on a Budget

Travel Europe Thinking about postponing that trip to Europe? It's almost Valentine's Day and European cities are some of the most romantic in the world. The exchange rate keeps getting worse, and fuel surcharges increase the cost of flying. There’s no guarantee that the dollar will strengthen against the Euro or that air fares will come down anytime soon. But, there are plenty of ways to reduce the strain on your wallet and still have a wonderful trip.

1. If you don’t have to vacation during the summer, don’t. Air fares can cost hundreds less off season.

2. Compare fares of major airlines with charter flights and consolidators. Save money by flying into a hub like London and transfer to a no-frills airline to reach your destination.

3. Pick a place and stay a while.  To greatly reduce your cost-per-night, stay in an apartment instead of a hotel.

4. Be sure your rental agent explains things like how to use the coffee maker and where the nearest markets are. A kitchen let’s you save on food by not eating every meal out.

Read more tips for traveling Europe on a budget

April 27, 2009

New Car Review: 2009 Toyota Prius

2009 Toyota-Prius Toyota's best-seller HEV ranks among the most aerodynamic production vehicles. It's a mid-size sedan with generous space for five in a comfortable cabin. Prius contains Toyota's high-voltage and high-powered Hybrid Synergy Drive (HSD) powertrain, which employs a thrifty 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine and a battery-powered electric motor. The HSD controls all energy produced by the two plants and applies it to turn the front wheels through an electronically controlled continuously variable transmission (CVT). Prius Touring Edition has 16-inch alloy wheels, high intensity discharge (HID) headlamps and suspension tuning, while a Standard Package is the price-beater.

Click here for more New Car Reviews.

April 24, 2009

Preventing Lost Luggage

Claiming lost luggage Losing your luggage stinks. Plain and simple. So to make your chances of having your luggage there upon arrival follow these tips.

·  Have your luggage shipped directly to your destination: For a fee, there are many services out there that will ship your luggage directly to your destination, cutting out the airlines all together.

·  Use a Global Tracking service such as, a unique item retrieval service enabling you to register your valuable items on a secure database.

·  Book direct flights. Connections and extra flights increase your chances of lost luggage.

·  Remove any old airline stickers from your luggage. You don't want there to be any confusion about your bag's destination.

·  Make your luggage stand out. There is a sea of Black luggage out there and if yours is Black too, it's that much more difficult to find. Buy colorful luggage or use yarn, tape, neon luggage tags, or bright straps to make it more noticeable.

Click here to view a complete list of luggage tips.

April 23, 2009

Keeping Your Car Makes Financial Sense

Proper-vehicle-maintenance Although you may want to get rid of your present vehicle in favor of a new car, taking better care of your current set of wheels may make much more sense in the long run-helping you achieve a goal of financial freedom.

"We advise our clients that if they want a 10 percent increase on their investments every year, they need to cut down on their expenses," said Terry Mulcahy, vice president of investments for R.W. Baird.

Recent figures from Runzheimer International, a management consulting firm that measure travel and living costs, show that trading a vehicle every eight years instead of every four can save more than $2000 a year post-payoff in repairs and maintenance, license, registration, taxes and insurance, confirming the Car Care Council’s claims.

More about proper vehicle maintenance on RTM.

April 22, 2009

5 Tips to Travel More Responsibly

Happy Earth Day RTM readers!

Sustainable Travel Every traveler should take into account their impact on the environment by considering simple steps that will make a big difference in how many resources they use. These five tips are an easy guide for responsible travelers to help protect the environment and respect the socio-cultural and economic needs of their destination.

1. Give your house a vacation – Don’t waste resources you won’t be using. Adjust your thermostat, put lights on a timer instead of leaving them on and put a hold on the newspaper delivery.

2. Pack a water filter and reuse water bottles – Cut down the monetary and environmental costs by packing a water filter and refilling.

3. Support the local economy – Make sure your money goes into the locals pockets by purchasing fair trade products and hitting up farmer’s markets for locally grown foods.

4. Use public transportation or ride a bike – You will save money and decrease your footprint.

5. Grasp your surroundings – Learn about the environment, culture and heritage of the area and get a greater appreciation for the land around you.

Click here for more green travel tips.

April 21, 2009

Best Bus Travel Destination

Bus travel With budgets ever tightening and families still expanding, family travel can become a dilemma. Well forget the airport and the long security lines, try traveling by bus, it provides comfort for the whole family -- no sleepy drivers, DVD players, and reclining seats, and no fail air conditioning. Starting to sound like a more viable option isn't it?

U.S. Coachways has a full line of buses that can handle groups as small as 6 or as large as 60 to take families to these fun destinations.

Orlando, Florida holds the key for fun for any family with their large number of choices for fun. There are four Walt Disney World Parks, Two Universal Theme Parks and Sea World.

The city of Williamsburg , Virginia has a great time in store for families on vacation. There are entertainment choices such as Busch Gardens and Water County USA as well as a chance to see America's past at Colonial Williamsburg that is a walking tour of a colonial village out of the early 1800's. Historical interpreters that act the part of village residents and live their lives, as they would have been during that time period, populate the village.

Click herefor more great places to visit by bus.

April 20, 2009

2009 Honda Fit : Economical and Impressive

Review by Kimberly Ewing

The 2009 Honda Fit is extremely impressive. Not only is this little beauty economical, it’s very affordable with a starting price of only $14,750. Our Honda Fit Sport starts at $18,960 which is an exceptional bargain. We averaged 29 miles per gallon in the city and 35 mpg highway. That’s two miles more per the EPA fuel economy estimates which are 27 and 33 respectively.

Fit-LrgGal01 Our journey took us from Detroit
to the west side of the Michigan, during which we found the Fit is very nimble in city driving and very easy to park even in the smallest of spaces. Even with high winds the car feels very safe. The Fit has ample safety features which include six airbags, energy-absorbing crush zones, anti-lock brakes, and active front head restraints. The Fit Sport also includes Vehicle Stability Assist with traction control. This little five door hatch with a five-speed automatic (also comes with a five-speed manual) has enough room for five adults.

f you are looking for a fantastic vehicle to get you around town and haul all of your goods, look no further than the Honda Fit. You’ll be glad you did. For more information, click here.

Visit Planet Driven for more on eco-friendly automotive.

April 17, 2009

Spring Car MaintenanceTips

Car care Spring is a time of fresh starts and renewals. Extend the “spring cleanup” you give your house and yard to your vehicle. You’ll not only improve its performance and lengthen its life, but you’ll spare yourself time, money and aggravation.
Whether you do the work yourself or depend on a professional technician, getting your vehicle in shape now will undo any damage caused by winter driving and keep you safe on the road this season. Start with removing clutter and giving your ride a shiny coat of wax; then move under the hood for a tune-up to make sure your care runs great through all of the seasons.
Click here for a full list of spring car cleaning tips.