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Photo Journal: CAPTIVATING CINQUE TERRE

After seeing photographs of this beautiful area of Italy for years, I finally got a chance to go and witness it myself. On the seaside, you can find five towns that are filled with beauty, food, color, history, and culture . It’s one of the loveliest places I’ve ever been, and of course I fell in love with it. I thought, I eat, prayed and loved my way in Pai. But it turns out I did the exact same thing here. Even with the odd rainy day, I wished I spent a longer time here. A special shoutout goes out to Franco my hostel host for creating an amazing experience and making everyone feel like family. Enjoy these shots of this picturesque region of Italia.

If interested in a Part 2: Comment down below, I love hearing from you wonderful people.

If any of these photos fancy you: Pin it to you Pinterest Board. I appreciate all the love.

Thank you so much for reading and I will see you in my next post, don’t forget to like/comment it means the world to me.

Where in the World are you right now?

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VENICE

As a teacher, I am constantly meeting the learning styles of all my students and most of that stems from tuning into the multiple intelligences of students. That being said, this week’s post is a little different. I am sharing with you my ‘5 MUST SEE’S IN VENICE’. I made this video a couple of months ago in the middle of quarantine and I felt that it was only fitting to share it with my new followers on this platform. If you’re wondering why I went to one of the most Romantic places in the world, check out my blog post here on Why you Should Solo Travel!

Special shoutout to all my new followers on here!

Thank you to everyone who has recently followed/liked/commented and subscribed for email notifications. This means so much to me and I can’t wait to share all my experiences with you! Let me know in the comments below if you enjoy a mixture of videos/ short blogs.

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HOW TO FIND CHEAP FLIGHTS

I always wondered what were the tricks to cheap flights? Was it having a buddy pass? Working as a flight attendant? or COVID (you know before, anyone knew what would happen). While, those are all things that could get you cheap flights. I’ve found over time these hacks Im sharing today have helped me get some steals to get away.

In this post i’m giving you all my hacks I use, to get cheap flights. Through my experience with my brothers ‘last minute’ flights to my ‘get me out this country flights’ and ‘I just need to save coin’ moments . I’ve found all these tricks have helped me secure flights for the low low.

Apps

  1. SkyScanner

If you haven’t read ‘My Favourite Travel Apps’, I talk about this app here. Basically, it’s a great tool to have to secure cheap flights. The only con is: You will typically get flights with layovers.

2. Hopper

This App is basically a two-for one, I love Hopper! I use this religiously and i mean RELIGIOUSLY. This app predicts prices for flights and hotels, with 95% accuracy up to 1 year in advance. It also shows you the dates where flights are the most expensive. This helps me with my planning process which I talk about in this post (See Number #1) on “How to Start a Solo Adventure’

General Hacks

  1. Fly Budget

Honestly, a lot of people are afraid to fly budget but to me the risks are equal in comparison to bigger airlines.

Below is a list of budget Airlines:

Somewhereintheworld (2020)

2. Don’t Always Fly Direct

Not only does it help to be flexible with dates and destinations but being flexible with the route you take is another way to get a cheap flights. For example, sometimes it’s cheaper to fly to a major city than search for another flight. See an example below

I did precisely this when I was going to Bali. The flight from the CA was $1300 CAD, but I could fly to Thailand for $700 and get a $60 flight to Bali (round-trip). It meant more flying time, but savings were added to food and activities that my girl Alexis made me do lol.

To use this method, send me a comment or email and I’ll help you through the process.

3. Newsletters

Before you start looking for specific lights, make sure you’ve signed up for some newsletters. As annoying as it can be, when you know you’re going to be travelling soon I recommend signing up so that you don’t miss any deals.

**HACK – Secret Flying is a great tool I use to find cheap flights and deals. You can also catch nice 5-day specials from time to time.

4. Search Multiple Sites

Honestly, not all sites are the same and sometimes they can search you over. Below are my top three for flight searching:

Skyscanner

Momondo

Flighthub

5. Search Incognito

Now, some people say this is a myth but honestly, not for me! It has taken me a long time to figure this out but I realized the longer you use the same browser, same sites they track your interest. Much like an Algorithm therefore, they KNOW you want this flight and when time is ticking eventually you’ll select whatever is available.

By using Incognito, I’ve been able to snag some cheap flights without the computer jacking up the price.

6. Take Advantage of Discounts

Typically, companies/ employeers may have a ‘discount’ for their employee’s. Dont pass this up, as a Teacher I commonly look at the discounts and monitor what is available to me.

For Students, (or if you’re under 26) here are many, many discounts available to you. You can usually find prices 20-30% off the standard fare. Travel agencies usually offer this at times. So just take a quick look at those options.

7. Use Points and Miles

I rarely use this (Credit Card Point Wise), but it is worth mentioning to check your Airmiles card. The KEY to this I found is making sure your Air-miles card is set-up to add points to your *Travel* points verses Free Items, etc.

Airmiles

8. Book Early But Not Too Early

Play it smart! I like to think of finding flights as playing Russian roulette. Airline fares will keep rising the closer you get to departure, but there is a sweet spot when the airlines begin to either lower or increase fares based on demand. Don’t wait until the last second but don’t book far, far in advance either.

9. Book between Monday-Wednesday

Airlines post new prices on Monday. Book your flight Monday-Wednesday because price changes come after Wednesday into the weekend. Usually for the worse, lol.

10. Check your fly out dates.

Flying out Tuesday/Thursday and returning Sunday, Tuesday, or Wednesday are the cheapest days to fly, typically.

Thank you so much for reading, and I’ll see you in my next post.

Don’t forget to leave a comment, xoxo.

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What Solo Backpacking has Taught Me

Lost in the Rice Fields in Ubud, Indonesia

I did a lot of solo backpacking in 2019 and it was my first time ever doing it. It is crazy to think, I just jumped in head first and didn’t look back. This was by far the biggest fear I had to overcome thus far in my life and honestly, I do not regret it. I do regret not doing it sooner. It took a lot of time and patience with myself to reframe my understanding and really commit to what I wanted to do.

In today’s post, I am sharing a few things that Solo Backpacking has taught me. Please keep in mind, this is specifically for Backpacking. Backpacking is a very different style of travel that not everyone is accustomed to. However, it is something that I think you should defiantly try. It really opens the doors for you to understand yourself in a different perspective. Without the influence of family or friends.

ACCEPT EMOTIONS EVEN THE BAD ONES

Not everyday will be the greatest day as a solo backpacker. But one thing I learned was that it’s okay not to be okay sometimes. Prior, to solo travelling I often feared sadness and showing that vulnerability because being a Black women in today’s society. You HAVE to be strong and often times being strong 24/7 can lead to a hard downfall. I learned while travelling it is totally okay to be happy and totally okay to be sad. In life, you have to take the good with the bad and allow yourself to experience different emotions to truly feel human. And if I’m being honest, bad emotions can often project you towards the right path.

If you follow my instagram: Kyramurrel, I post my awful bus chronicles (Croatia)

TO ASK QUESTIONS

This is an ego thing. I will be honest haha, prior to travelling asking questions was very difficult for me. I’d rather struggle and go through PAIN before asking a question. After, backpacking I realized it’s okay, not to know the answer. The most important thing, is to find out how you can get the answer. And if i’m being honest, in interview’s they love this shit. Being able to ask questions when “you’re not sure and seek support”, My friends, if you say this line you’re on your way to employee of the month baby. Lol, just partially joking. But in all seriousness, asking questions and seeking help is a big thing I learned while backpacking and it’s taught me so much about using the community and people to help me get by.

VALUE MATERIAL THINGS DIFFERENTLY

This is a very interesting one because you often think you don’t value material things or showing material things. However, when you step outside of your home city you learn just how much it runs a lot of lives. While back-packing I learned to value material differently for example, buying those bottles at the club and poppin champagne likes its always my birthday. It’s just not the scene for me anymore, that $250 bottle every night I go out can go towards climbing Machu Picchu. Now, Im not saying- not have fun but think of alternative ways that fun can be had that allows you to see the world because honestly, its beautiful.

TO LIVE WITHIN A MOMENT

I loved this realization and it is still an on-going thing for me because I am young and I love instagram and I love pictures. That being said, while backpacking there were a few times when I would be quick to take a photo and not just any photo, but the perfect photo. I would also record views and look through my phones lens (i know terrible right!?).

But most of us are guilty of that because it is what we’ve become accustomed to. For example, think about the last time you were in the club and either had bottles served to you or someone else. How many camera’s were recording? and who was really in the moment?

While, it is good to take photos it is also important that you live in the moment. Take one photo, and then LIVE in the MOMENT, observe it, take it all in or just look at the scenery listen to the; air, the birds, the people, and yourself and you’ll realize that there is beauty in simplicity and despite how terrible the world is, there is also beauty in it as well.

Sunsets in Croatia

I’VE RECEIVED MORE RACISM IN THE CA THAN ABROAD

Yep. You read that correctly! More than anything, racism (at least the face-to-face kind) isn’t something that a traveler can ever really be prepared for. TBH: Racism is always on my mind when travelling. But, in my years of travel (all-inclusives/short trips/back-paCking) I have only encountered 3 situations and that was in the US and than the every-so often case in Canada(where I live).

When I talk to other travellers (specifically back-packers), especially Black women, we all mostly agree that racism is more in your face in America. In almost all cases I have met nothing but respectful people who are willing to help/sell me items/hang-out with me. I sometimes get stared at thought. In most cases, it’s because Black people are not a common occurrence in the area. And yes there has been a few cases where it was “let’s take a picture” and yaknow I kindly say NEOOOOOOOOOOPE.

TO BE CONFIDENT

I learned very quick that you had to be confident in a holistic way. Confidence for yourself as well as confidence in yourself (decisions). The moment, I landed I had to make a lot of choices in every country and often times it has been easy for me to text a friend asking ‘what do you think’ and when you’re travelling you don’t have that. So i had to quickly, get on the Somewhere in the world train and just trust myself and be confident in my choices.

2019

YOU CAN BE ALONE AND NOT LONELY

If nothing else, being by yourself is a great way to learn who you are, what you love, what you don’t love and where you want to go in life. Learning who you are is a great way to build self-confidence, resilience and courage. Building that confidence in yourself is the first step to living a life you’re proud of.

I realize that such a sentiment is quite dramatic but I have found it to be true after my travels. If nothing else, it builds confidence in the smaller things. I used to be afraid to try new things totally outside my comfort-zone (i.e., doing these crazy long hikes). I am now more confident in my abilities and more willing to put myself out in the world and push myself to the limit. Travel is a big part of this.

I have already proven to myself that I can take care of myself. Why wouldn’t book bigger and better trip? I have already shown myself that I can do what I put my mind to. Why not step up at work and take on more responsibility? Take chances? Asks questions and LEARN.

A Beach in Zadar, Croatia

Thank you so much for reading and I’ll see you in my next post, don’t forget to leave a comment.