Check the Cheque


This post will be brief but nonetheless succinct.  The majority of travelers are usually short on the amount of money they have in pocket versus the amount of time they are on vacation.  A fabulous getaway will definitely include bills for: accommodation, meals, entertainment, excursions and shopping sprees.  While it is nice to be able to purchase whatever you want without having to look at the price tag a few times or be overwhelmed by the price, it is still necessary for the budget traveler to create a bespoke itinerary that helps them to keep in check the how, what and where, the budgeted monies that are set aside, will be spent.  Even though many tourists include these dedicated funds as part of their itinerary expenditure for particular purchases, they may discover some inconsistencies that may turn their dream vacation into a nightmare.

A surprise charge, miscalculation, data entry error, or flat-out swindling are all scenarios that can alarm the unsuspecting traveler.  It is therefore imperative to review invoices received in stores, hotels, restaurants, and especially in dimly lit bars.  Take the time to check your order thoroughly before signing on the dotted line or before handing over your credit card.   Peter Lalor an Australian journalist and beer critic was thrown for a loop (thousands of dollars) at what he was charged for a bottle of beer.  Ordinarily, when he buys the various ales to taste and critique, they do not cause him to break his budget limit, but this particular brew nearly sent him to the poor house.  He is still hopeful that the error will be corrected and that he’ll be refunded the exorbitant amount he was charged.  Read of his debacle here.

Sometimes we are in a rush and only become aware of invoice mistakes, whether intentional or inadvertent, when it is too late. Here are a few tips to manage your charges when on vacation.

  1. Designate someone to go over the invoice and handle payment if you become inebriated.
  2. Whatever the circumstance, establish a spending limit and make sure that you are charged correctly.
  3. Calculate your purchases beforehand, include the necessary taxes and gratuities before calling for the check or going to the register.
  4. Be aware of the day’s exchange rate acceptable at your shopping establishments if paying in foreign currency.
  5. Question any differences on your bill immediately. It may be harder to be refunded if an error is noticed a day or two after the fact.

Community Peeps, I try to practice what I preach.  Whether at home or abroad, I always check the charges on invoices.  Invariably, I have found when I don’t, and there have been a few times when I didn’t, I would always realize a discrepancy which was too late to correct.  What has been your experience on this subject?  Were you ever overcharged or charged for items/services you never received on vacation?  Share your experience or additional tips in the comment box below.

Readers, as usual, I invite you to click follow to receive timely updates, select like to show your love and support.  Share this post on your social media site.  Write your comment in the box below.  Your interest, time and attention are always appreciated.  Thank you for reading.

More times,

Itinerary Planner

Big Money


“If you don’t have a ticket you don’t have a chance,” was the introductory chant I heard as a kid, from a TV personality whenever he announced the winning lottery numbers.  This was the benign encouragement fortune seekers needed to go and purchase tickets for their big break in life.  Should they win big money, the financial windfall would change their lives completely.  This week, someone from South Carolina won the mega millions and now has $1.6B reasons to smile all the way to the bank.  The fortunate winner is sitting pretty on more money than they can possibly spend in their life time.  Or can they?

I am 99.9 percent sure one of the things the new billionaire will do is take a vacation.  Who wouldn’t?  Their reasons to travel now would be to get away for a much needed rest, to quietly plan how to manage the money, and to hide from the sudden, overwhelming, outpouring of unwanted attention.  In any event, it is safe to say travel will be a part of their plans, if not immediately, then soon.  Therefore, as an itinerant itinerary planner, I am here to give some wanderlust tips to the mystery winner of things they can purchase for their holiday and still not go broke.  (Wouldn’t it be humorous if the winner was one of my ardent blog followers who reads this post? hmmmm).

Let’s see if these travel recommendations are worthy if money is not an object.   Here are the 10 suggestions:

  1. Fly in your private jet to an exotic destination anywhere in the world
  2. Rent for a week a hide-away from prying eyes, a private island in the South Pacific would be the perfect retreat
  3. Step out in style – a couture wardrobe for the season from a designer house of your choice, should also include designer luggage
  4. Sail a private yacht around the island with executive chefs on-board
  5. Secure private box or front-row seating for entertainment events
  6. Organic meals and exquisite dining are prepared by Michelin-star chefs
  7. Rejuvenate under the skillful hands of a luxury spa and aromatherapy therapists
  8. Private chauffeur
  9. Security detail should include a driver, bodyguard and personal assistant
  10. Give $100 to every beggar you meet

Community Peeps, this post is just a light-hearted piece to let your mind wander on how well you could travel if you had money like that.  This is what I want you to do for me.  Name a price for the entire trip, just like you would on the game show “The Price is Right”.  Remember our unknown winner is taking a week-long vacation.  It will be interesting to find out what the price tag is on the 10 items above.  The first 10 numbers collected will tell me what the total cost of the vacation will be and I write a subsequent post of the possible cost of each item.

Now don’t get cute and tell me you cannot give a dollar amount for tip #10 because they are on a private island and unlikely to meet anyone.  Estimate.  Surely, my soon-to-be client 😀 who is rolling-in dough will meet people along the way that could use a little help.  So, send in your best guess dollar amount for the package and let’s see if we come close to even putting a dent into the billion.  Also, you may include other choices to their holiday that you did not see on the list?  It would be interesting to read, so please share.

Readers, as usual, I invite you to click follow to receive timely updates, select like to show your love and support.  Share this post on your social media site.  Write your comments in the box below.  Your interest, time and attention are appreciated.  Thanks for reading.

More times,

Itinerary Planner