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Tip 77: Have copies of Passport

Luckily we haven’t needed it yet, but we scan and email ourselves copies of our passports before a big trip.

My parents like to take physical copies with them, but I have decided electronic copies are ok for now.

What has worked best for you? Have you found this helpful in the event a passport is stolen or lost?

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Tip 76: Ask the hotel for available upgrades

You don’t know what is possible until you ask. When checking in, see if there are options to upgrade for a better view. Often there is a cost, and you might find it’s not worth it. But sometimes the upgrades are complementary so it never hurts to ask!

Why miss out on the beach view, if you can help it!

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Tip 75: Cuba travel advice

Yesterday we shared a tip on making sure you carry toilet paper with you while visiting the island. That was honestly the best advice we got prior to our trip so it felt worthy a separate post.

Here are some other tips:

  • You will need a visa if traveling from the US. Airlines and cruise lines sell them. They are about $75/person and can be issued immediately.
  • CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso) is the main currency. There is another option, the Cuban Peso, bur that is more for locals. The CUC is pretty much dollar to US dollar but the exchange taxes the conversion of US dollars something like 13%. It is more advantageous to convert from Euros so we had planned ahead and brought those instead. Also, US banks cannot concert the cash for you so it is something you have to do once you are in Cuba.
  • As of this writing, you can bring back 100 cigars and 1 liter of rum duty free per adult traveler. It is best to buy both from official retailers to avoid fakes.
  • There are hundreds of classic cars for hire relatively inexpensively. A fun way to view the city!
  • Drink only from sealed, bottles beverages.

Havana highlights:

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Tip 74: Take Toilet Paper to Cuba

This may sound like super odd advice, but I was so thankful the cruise line gave us a heads up before we disembarked at Cuba. Sadly most charter buses (cruise excursions, included) and restaurants in Cuba did not have toilet paper. Also, many tourist stops and restaurants charged a dollar for access to a bathroom. Best to be prepared and carry a roll with you!

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Tip 73: Fastest customer care is through Twitter

All airlines, hotels, airports, etc now have Twitter and they usually monitor it something fierce.

Before you waste a lot of time standing in line to rebook a flight, as a example, hop on Twitter and send the airline customer service a note. In our experience the issue was resolved 2x faster than waiting in a physical line at the airport.

Go digital!

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Tip 72: Don’t Skip Breakfast

When traveling, it is easy to get out of our routine and skip meals. Breakfast tends to be an easy one to skip, but there are drawbacks and it can make your travels difficult if you are hungry or get rushed to find your next meal.

Consider passing on the hotel breakfast one day, especially if it is not included, and go to a local café.  This is a favorite past-time when traveling places like New York City and Europe. Check out a small café…they are almost literally on every street. You will get a feel for the city and what it is like to live there. It’s also a fun way to take in some people watching!