Posts for Travel Tips Category

5 Best Internet Options for RVers

Travel Tips - Ross French - September 24, 2018

Having an internet connection seems like less and less an option and more and more a necessity for many people. Some require it for work, some for entertainment, movies, music, or games, others for connecting to banks, or paying bills, or sending emails. Having internet available all the time is pretty simple for most people. If you have service connected to your house or apartment, you are set.

Out of the house? Your workplace has a network with internet connectivity, and maybe a WiFi system. Your cell phone likely can reach the internet, and many businesses offer free WiFi. But not everyone wants to stay at home, or even in their own town. They want to travel. For those who travel in RVs, it feels a lot like home and they’d like the same conveniences, including the internet. So what are their options?

Park/Campground WiFi

The most obvious is to park your RV at a campground or an RV park that offers WiFi, either free or for an additional fee. For casual users this can work out quite well. Just need to check your email or your bank balance? Connect and your set. But your space might not be close enough to the access point, or there might be something blocking it. Still, you carry your device to a point where you can connect, do your business, and head back. If you want more convenience, purchase a WiFi booster to get better signal. It won’t help in every situation, but it will give you better signal than you would get without it.

For users with higher requirements this might not be enough. If you use your internet connection for work you might need enough throughput to do video conferencing or large data transfers to support your website. The park WiFi is shared between all the users and that can limit the bandwidth available. Worse yet, the owners may decide to throttle or otherwise limit users so everyone has some bandwidth and no one can use too much. This can make it unusable for your work. If you have high data consumption and rely on access to work you should not rely solely on this.

Public Access WiFi

Instead of using the park provided WiFi you could use another company’s access. Some fast food restaurants offer free WiFi, as do many coffee shops, bars, and libraries. These can provide more service than a park as there are typically less users on them at once. But many businesses expect this access to be used by customers, so it is wise to make purchases while using it, making you a customer.

A rule of thumb for coffee shops is to make one purchase an hour, and some even offer discounts on refills. Still, this can become a bit expensive. Libraries are usually free, although they may require a library card which might have a fee for a non-resident. Libraries can have more users so they may have limits on access. Of course, a basic limitation on all of these is business hours. Once the business closes you won’t be able to stay.

These are great options if you are working while traveling. This is also a good time to turn your travels into money. You can take pictures to sell to other travel sites or artist. You could start a blog and build an audience so that you can make money.


For access that you never have to leave your RV to use you can connect directly to a satellite. While this option has some drawbacks, it has one major advantage. All other access depends on someone else providing an access point close enough to where you are at for you to connect. Satellite internet can be accessed in practically any location with a view to the southern sky (in the northern hemisphere). Point your dish at the correct part of the sky and you should be able to connect to the internet through the orbiting satellite.

One drawback to this is the sheer distance to reach that geosynchronous orbit. This creates latency (or lag) in your connection. Gamers recognize this is a severe problem with their programs, as will anyone using video conferencing, but many users will never notice it. Another problem is expense. The dish can be expensive, and the service itself costs more than most other paid alternatives, with somewhat slower speeds and lower data caps.

Cellular Tether/Hotspot

As many people know, their cell phones can connect to the internet both through WiFi and by using their cellular data plan. While WiFi usually isn’t regulated on the phone, the data plan is. Even unlimited plans have caps where new rules apply, such as throttling or data management. But, using a cell phone to access the internet from an RV can not only give you internet on the phone, but also share that access through USB tethering, connecting to another device using a USB cable, or by creating a mobile hotspot, a WiFi access point based out of your phone. Some providers or plans charge extra for these services, or have a separate cap on their data usage, so check to see what your limits are.

To make it even more useful, consider investing in a booster that will let you connect to a cell tower at a greater distance and increase your data speed at whatever distance you connect. Another upgrade is a means of sharing that connection with multiple devices by plugging the phone into a router or laptop.

Dedicated Hotspot

To free up your cell phone from the duty of providing access you can get a hotspot device that only connects to your cell service and provides a mobile WiFi hotspot. You can still benefit from cell boosters to get better signal or a router to handle more devices, so consider what your needs are before settling on a single device.

You may have noticed that these different options can be combined to provide alternatives if one doesn’t work out in a particular location or situation. Your best option will always be enough different choices to be sure you have the access you require. If your needs are modest, two inexpensive options can fulfill them. If you rely on the internet for your livelihood and need guaranteed access at all hours having many options with enhancements for each will give you the greatest peace of mind. Balance your needs and your budget and choose what is best for you.

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5 Las Vegas Bars that are Truly Unique

Travel Blog, Travel Tips - Ross French - August 21, 2018

When you come to Las Vegas, you come for the excitement, adventure, and of course, we can’t forget the food and fun. There are so many attractions and fantastic things to see that it can get overwhelming to the senses. Sometimes there is so much to do that you don’t know what to do. Seeing a unique and interesting bar and spending some time there is always a good way to enjoy yourself and to regroup and put a plan together for the rest of your Las Vegas stay.

1. Camden Cocktail Lounge Palms Casino and Resort

The Camden Cocktail Lounge is a Las Vegas bar that focuses on mind-blowing cocktails which are presented in over-the-top manners. If you want to be wowed by your cocktail, this is the perfect place to go. The bartenders here are masters of mixology and put their own spin on your favorite classics, or they will create a new favorite for you right before your eyes.

When you step into the opulent atmosphere, you’ll feel like a different person. The setting is much like a modern library. The bookcase that lines one wall gives you a great feel, and the flat-screen TVs give you the modern-age technology we’ve all come to know and love.

The cove ceiling hangs a collection of black and gold glass pebbles in different heights, and sheen finishes and bronze accents and charcoal velvets are along the lounge. When you think of Camden – think luxury with approachability.

2. Count’s Vamp’d Rock Bar & Grill

Talk about a unique bar, Count’s Vamp’d Rock Bar & Grill will give you the unique experience you’ve been searching for. There is live music, great food, drinks and a cool setting. This bar was founded by Danny “Count” Koker of the History Channel’s popular show “Counting Cars” and represents the Rock & Roll and Classic Era of Sunset Strip. If you love music, you’ll be impressed with the high-quality, professional sound system and stage. You’ll truly feel the music in this setting which gives you the hard rock/motorcycle/macabre atmosphere.

3. Double Down Saloon

At Double Down Saloon, it is all shut up and drink. If you love your brew, then this is a great spot for you to come and visit. This dark, mural-covered saloon features live punk bands, an electric jukebox, and bacon martinis. Enjoy bar games, fast service, and great cocktails when you come to this joint.

4. Mountain Springs Saloon

If you want something different than what you are going to find on the main strip, Mountain Springs Saloon is the perfect place for you. Bring your motorcycle and get ready for a delicious pig roast. All you need is ten dollars, and you’re going to be high on the hog. Check the calendar to see when there is going to be live entertainment or another event to your liking.

5. Hofbrauhaus

You’ll feel as if you’ve just stepped into a German bar when you come to Hofbrauhaus. The community seating, plenty of brews and live entertainment will have ready to kick up your heels and have some fun. Don’t miss out on the garden with its full-sized chestnut trees, and fountains. You may want to focus on going to the bar. Whatever you want, there is a lot to see when you visit Hofbrauhaus.

What You Need to Know When Visiting Las Vegas

If you’ve never visited Las Vegas before, you are in for a treat. This city has many unique attractions, shows, and people. While there is plenty to do, there are some things to keep in mind before you come to Las Vegas.

1. Las Vegas caters to the twenty-one and over crowd. While Las Vegas has worked to become more family friendly, that is not always the case. Las Vegas can be a little on the wild side for bringing children. You might want to keep your crew to those that have their valid of-age IDs.

2. In Las Vegas, you can drink on the street as long as the container is not glass. In most places across the US, you aren’t allowed to drink legally on the streets, but here you can bar hop as much as you like and take your alcohol with you.

3. Las Vegas wants people to visit their city, and there is a place to sleep for any budget. Whether you want a swanky loft of you’re ready to Airbnb it with a shared apartment, you can have at it in Las Vegas.

4. The food scene is on point in Las Vegas. There are plenty of all-you-can-eat buffets and cafeteria style joints where you can grab a bite to eat or fill yourself to your heart’s content. Your choice. Extreme fine dining is alive and well in the desert with various chefs such as Wolfgang Puck, and Guy Fieri have their own restaurants in Las Vegas.


When you’re on your way to Las Vegas, know there is a place for you. No matter what you are looking for, Sin City has you covered. Keep the above information in mind, visit one of these great bars and you are sure to have a great time. What happens here stays here so have some fun, let your hair down and enjoy the entertainment, food, brews, and people of this fun and inviting tourist-favorite location.

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Riga – How my wanderlust saved my life

Travel Tips - Ross French - August 14, 2018

The world offers magnificent sceneries which everyone who has the chance should visit during their lifetime. When we had visited Sicily to discover my Italian roots, I realized how vast and beautiful our world really is. It was at that time when the spark of wanderlust flickered inside of me. By that time, however, I was already struggling with my weight, being stuck in that endless downward spiral of unhealthy, sedentary lifestyle. The food was my only companion and stress reliever, slowly ruining my life with each gained pound. A few years later, my BMI had increased so much, that getting a gastric sleeve surgery had become my only chance at having a normal life once again. I was hopeless.

However, it was at this time when that long-forgotten spark to travel and visit beautiful and exotic places, kicked in once again. I had always been intrigued by the Baltics and their rich culture, history, cuisine, and beautiful climate.

Riga – A historic crossroad

Latvia is such a beautiful country and an important historic crossroad, where different cultures and powers had influence over the centuries. And Riga’s architecture shows that in the most beautiful way. The breathtaking sights of Daugava River, the wonderful climate, and hospitable people, made the city an obvious choice to visit.

Alas, that was not the only reason why I chose this wonderful city as my destination. It offered something I gravely needed – medical tourism opportunities for the treatment I needed. A treatment that would change my life forever.

Medical Tourism in Latvia

As soon as I discovered the affordable gastric sleeve in Riga, at a fraction of the price, I immediately made my arrangements with the hospital and accommodation. Something inside of my flickered, telling me that after this trip, nothing would ever be the same.

It wasn’t only the prospect of a normal life, but the sheer beauty of the city and country that forever captured my heart. I decided to have a week-long vacation before my treatment, so I could fully experience Riga, visiting as many landmarks as I could.


The city’s west bank is a magical place with lots of green spaces and beaches. Even though the beaches weren’t my favorite place to go, in Riga, they radiate with peace and serenity. After a long time, I felt good just feeling the sand on my feet.


I fell in love with the old city instantly. The specific architecture, the old, car-free cobblestones beneath my feet, gave me a feeling of traveling through time – where the most of Riga’s beautiful landmarks are located. The House of Blackheads, Riga Town Hall, and the Riga Castle are just some of the landmarks which took my breath away.

A wonderful cuisine

Knowing that my relationship with food would soon change forever, I decided to taste some of the traditional dishes before my treatment. Pelmeni Dumplings, Pickles and Sauerkraut and the Latvian staple dark rye bread, are a-must-taste if you ever visit this wonderful city.

A new step forward

Only a few days after the surgery, I was released from the hospital and took my flight back home, knowing that I had probably made the most important decision in my life. There were apprehension and anxiety at first, but as my excess weight began going away, I knew I had made the right choice. At last, I felt like a complete person, ready to tackle life’s challenges and enjoy its beauty. Because of this, Riga will always have a special place in my heart – because, in its own way, it had saved my life!

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Top Wildlife Reserves in Africa for a Picture-Perfect Holiday

Africa, Travel Blog, Travel Tips - Ross French - August 12, 2018

Africa spoils its tourists when it comes to choosing which wildlife reserve to visit. Africa undoubtedly is one of the most spectacular tourist destinations in the world today and offers many exciting attractions ranging from adventures in Uganda to bungee jumping to having close encounters with wildlife in their natural habitat! We feel that nothing is as exciting as the view of the king of the jungle chasing its prey, mountain gorillas or the popular wildebeest migrations. It is not easy to decide which place to visit and thus we have compiled a list of the top wildlife reserves in Africa for a picture-perfect holiday:

1. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

This reserve is as magical as you would expect it to be and much more! It is a pristine landscape dotted with Savannah, stunning acacias and roving herds. Serengeti is the recommended destination if you want to look at the Great Migration, which is the greatest spectacle of the animal species on earth with over 2 million zebras, gazelle and wildebeest changing their habitats! It is known as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and offers some of the most spectacular views in this region!

2. Kruger National Park

Think of wildlife in Africa, and Kruger will come to your mind! In fact, the number of animal species that one can sight here makes it one of the best national parks in the world! It is situated in South Africa and some of the most commonly sighted animals here include the hippo, giraffe, zebra, buffalo, lion, elephant, cheetah, leopard and rhino.

3. Volcanoes National Park

Another exciting and intriguing national park is the Volcanoes National Park located in Rwanda. It houses some of the most exotic and attractive animals, especially mountain gorillas that lure tourists from all around the world to Africa. Coming face to face with these vibrant apes and clicking a selfie with them is in the bucket list of many!

4. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

This is listed as a world heritage site and is located in Uganda. The abundance of mountain gorillas in this national park makes it one of the most popular national parks here. This reserve is set over a steep mountain rainforest and the latest count reflects approximately 35 gorillas in this park to today. It remains one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in Africa and you should definitely visit it during your time in Uganda.

5. Kidepo Valley National Park

While it might not be as well known as a few others in this list, it is the most beautiful park in Africa. It is set against the stunning mountains of Mount Morungole and the plains of Kidepo and Narus Valley. The most popular animals one can sight here are the voracious Kidepo lions.

We hope that the above list will help you decide which wildlife reserve to visit during your time in Africa! Pack your trekking shoes and sunglasses and embark on an adventure of a lifetime!

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6 Reasons Why You Need to Create Your Next Travel Guide with Tiplr

Travel Guides, Travel Tips - Ross French - August 3, 2018

Travel is that intangible, transformational experience that explorers all over the world lust after. We all travel for different reasons and our travel experiences change us each in a myriad of ways. The act of traveling is fundamental to our internal development and our understanding of the outside world. This we know as humans who love to travel, who adore exploring a new destination, who live for finding unknown spots, off the typical tourist path. But how do we get to experience travel in this way, as authentically and uniquely as possible? Tiplr is reimagining what travel guides are, with smart travel tips for today’s digital age. Read on to discover why you need to be a part of the revolution.

1. Planning Travel Can Be a Chore

Planning a trip can be exhilarating and exhausting. Many of us enjoy the research of investigating a new destination and devouring every ounce of travel information out there, and the worst possible feeling is discovering that this newfound knowledge is untrue, out of date, or biased in some way. Unfortunately, this happens far too often in the review based travel industry that has sprouted up in the last 20 years with the rise of Tripadvisor and Yelp. The evolution of technology has been a blessing and a curse. While it’s great that we can connect with people all around the world, in some instances, there’s a total oversaturation of bad travel information. Weeding through the muck and finding those special nuggets that will make all the difference in your travels is a necessary evil.
One pain point of travel planning is finding quality travel information and then having an easy method to save this information. If you’re a planner like me, I’m sure you’ve exhausted yourself with Google docs, emails, iPhone notes, reminders, and lists. Last year, while planning a two-week road trip through England and Scotland, I nearly lost my mind. Imagine having everything organized in one place before you even take off for the airport. Rejoice fellow type­as! With a tool like Tiplr, this phase of planning can be truly enjoyable. One platform for all of the travel tips you need.

2. Traditional Guidebooks Don’t Cut it Anymore, Sorry Lonely Planet

Of course, you can always go the tried and true way of a travel guidebook. They’re written by talented, verified writers, who spend hours researching and experiencing their material firsthand. The downside, however, is unless you have the goal of carrying an extra bag for books, or you don’t mind using an edition from five years ago, guidebooks just aren’t as practical as they used to be. Not in the digital world anyway. Furthermore, highlighting and saving the travel tips that

you want from a book is not an easy task. Guidebooks can be fantastic resources but our society moves much faster than print media, and this traditional approach struggles to keep up.

3. The Oversaturation of Bad, Inaccurate, Biased, or Just Plain Boring Travel Content

How many times have you clicked on an article titled something like “The Coolest Things to do in New York City” and been let down? Do we need another reminder that you can ice skate at Rockefeller Center or spend an afternoon sunbathing in Central Park? Those types of travel tips are a dime a dozen, and we should expect, receive, and contribute, better.

Scrolling through Instagram can surely peak your wanderlust, but how many times do you come across an influencer staying at a hotel you could never afford to stay at? Or a beautiful photo with zero location information and a vague caption?

How about reviews that are completely misleading whether they mean to be or not? I’ll never forget reading about one hike in Arizona that I wanted to do with my sister. You would have thought we were climbing Everest by the way people wrote about it online. In truth, neither of us was in Ironman shape and we completely easily and totally enjoyed ourselves. These are not the tools we need to travel smarter and better.

4. You Want to be a Part of a Community

To expand on the last point, often you find travel tips online that are just not “you”. You find bloggers that are not your type of traveler. They’re being paid to write about the Ritz Carlton while you’re on a hostel or Airbnb budget. For one reason or another, many travel writers or authorities out there just aren’t relatable. Enter a community of smart travelers. This group of explorers thrives on traveling authentically and helping others do the same, whatever that means for them.

We’re all different travelers. Some of us wouldn’t be caught dead in a hostel, while others will try any foreign delicacy from any food cart. Tiplr can be the ultimate travel tool for both. This is because you become part of a diverse community filled with diverse travelers. You may relate to Laura, who graduated from college in the United Kingdom and spent the next year working and living abroad in New Zealand. You may love the content of Andre, who is originally from Brazil but has lived and traveled everywhere from South Africa to Russia. You may have a family of your own and relate to Crystal, who is now traveling with a toddler in tow. Whether you identify as a backpacker, budget traveler, solo traveler, a combination of all or somewhere in between, there’s content from other smart travelers to help.

While traveling, some of our best memories or experiences revolve around the people we meet, locals and other travelers alike. Those interactions and the travel tips shared are truly priceless. This community aspect is what drives Tiplr.

5. Do More Than Find Places to Eat and Sights to See

There are many sources for finding top sights and the hottest restaurants in town, but there’s more to travel than that. Not only can explorers find where to go and what to eat, but where to stay, how to get there, and what essentials they need to have a successful trip. What about the essential tips you need to understand the culture, prepare the proper documentation or find transportation? Sure, reading about booking a ferry isn’t as sexy as the newest celebrity eatery featured in Conde? Nast, but finding the right website to book that ferry will make all the difference while cruising around the Aegean Sea.

Tiplr has it all, from travel tips about secret swimming holes to tips on how to pack, to where to find the best pizza in town, and which hotel or rental property will give you the most bang for your buck

When you boil it down, the challenge is finding the best of what you come across on a blog, with reliable published travel information, and unique travel tips from fellow travelers like yourself, all in one place. Tiplr is that one place, packaging it all into one platform, accessible at the touch of a button, from anywhere in the world.

6. Create Your Own Travel Guides!

With Tiplr, planning and executing the perfect trip does not have to be painful. All of the travel tips you find can be easily saved and organized, unburdening you from shared docs and maps. Search for all of the essentials you need, the restaurants you can’t wait to try, and the places you plan to stay, then save them with one click.

Once you’ve searched to your heart’s content, you can create your very own guidebook. Forget buying PDFs of digital guides or highlighting and dog-earring guidebooks, you are fully in charge. No longer do you have to weed through hundreds of reviews to find the few sentences that will help your experience. Save a travel tip from your friend who just came from Iceland, one from a blogger you love, and a few from a professional Bradt writer. Next thing you know, you’ll be relaxing in a hidden hotpot or gazing up at the Northern Lights.

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