Travel Gems for March 15th-19th

Each Monday through Friday, a Travel Gem of the Day will be posted at These Travel Gems are tips that will help a traveler travel smarter, safer, handle home issues, be prepared and enjoy their journeys.

Here are last week’s Travel Gems:

Monday Mar. 15th – Find cheaper tickets and book faster when you have availability by booking class at your fingertips onSeatCounter.Find cheaper tickets and book faster when you have availability by booking class at your fingertips on SeatCounter.

At a glance, you can see what fare classes are available by flight by airline for the day and time that you want to fly. Locate the flight with the lower class of fares available. Green indicates high availability; red equals no availability, with several shades between. SeatCounter also indicates that it displays award ticket availability.

Tuesday Mar. 16th -Never leave home without a tube of your favorite hand cream in your bag, and use it frequently throughout your trip. Not only will this help keep your hands from drying out but can help counter the effects of harsh commercial-grade soaps found in public restrooms.

I am currently using a tiny very-TSA-friendly bottle of Bloom Rosemary Infusion Hand and Body Moisturizer from the Embassy Suites Hotel. It feels good and smells great. When the lotion is gone, the bottle is perfect size for refilling with my favorite hand creams from home.

Wednesday Mar. 17th – A big part of travel fun is enjoying local eats at holiday time. St. Patty’s Day brings out the corned beef and cabbage in many cities. Paczki (Punchki) Day is the Polish celebration of the day before Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, celebrated predominantly in the Midwest. And remember to enjoy a King Cake at Mardi Gras in New Orleans! The more local the tradition, the more fun it is to me!

What local eats do you love at holiday times?

Thursday Mar. 18th – Why place a fabric softener sheet in your luggage when packing? It will absorb odors and keep clothing smelling fresh. Great for freshening up sneakers also.

I had a leftover fabric softener sheet in my suitcase after a trip where I did laundry in my hotel. Instead of throwing the fabric sheet away or taking it back home, I placed it amongst my clothes in my suitcase. Everything had a nice clean scent to it. Now I always toss a fabric softener sheet in my luggage.

Another benefit: if static cling is an issue with a skirt or slacks, just dampen the fabric sheet and rub it over your pantyhose. Goodbye static cling!

Friday Mar. 19th – Two sites great for family travel: and MyKidsEatFree has over 5,000 U.S. restaurants that offer free or inexpensive meals to children. You can find vacation or day trip ideas where kids get in free at MyKidsGoFree.

If you would like a favorite travel tip of yours to be included in the Travel Gem of the Day, email your tip, name and website to

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