by Anne Watcher on Friday August 3rd, 2007 at 5:10pm
Point of interest...
...when you go to book airline tickets at a travel agency, do your research online first.
I had been watching ticket prices for awhile on various websites but mainly the airlines directly. I knew American Airlines had a $189 US return ticket but with a forced overnight in Dallas. However they also had a $219 US return flight out of Detroit through Dallas to San Jose. The return was San Jose-Miami-Detroit.
I was aware that taxes were on top and also the agency fee of $58.30 per person. When the travel agent first looked for tickets she said she could get us tickets for about $500 CAD.
Upon asking us what we found I told her the flight and airlines and she got us an even better departure time - so less wait in Dallas - all for $716.30 CAD, taxes and her fees included for the two of us. She could not believe how cheap they were as she said with a return date 60 days later she said the price is usually higher.
So if I hadn't done my research we would of taken her first offer as she thought that was good.
by Anne Watcher on Monday July 16th, 2007 at 9:31am
Few weeks later, a change of plans. When talking to our friends which got us on this trail, we realized that plane tickets where going to be a lot more money than planned.
So I checked flights to San Jose, Costa Rica. We thought that if the price is right we could fly there and then bus up to Granada. Found great prices for plane tickets and then also found a nice 1 bedroom apt. for rent at a great price.
So for the first month we are staying at Norma's Apartments in La Garita, Costa Rica. It is very close to the airport and they pick up their guests and take them shopping for supplies.
It is in the Central Mountain district, center of the flower growing district and short bus trip to Poas Volcano, Alajuela and Atenas. They have a pool and wireless internet around the pool which is a necessity for us not only to keep in touch with home but for Rob to conduct business while we are away.
We haven't decided totally where to go for the second month, we might just stay there or may move on to Nicaragua.
by Anne Watcher on Thursday June 28th, 2007 at 7:11pm
Book stores are also a great source of information. Travel books give you great hints as to local customs, were to go and things to see.
Great news, while reading last night - I think it was Moon Travel - I found out that there is a Best Western right across the street from the airport. When I came home I got on their website, looks good.
Some sites had some reviews of the hotel that you could read. Some were good, some bad and some in between. All of them said that it had a great breakfast included.
Electricity going out is common in Nicaragua so I guess that can cause problems with air conditioning and hot water but all in all it sounds like a great option so we can take the red-eye flight. Now I have to call and make sure their front desk is open 24 hours.
I can't see it not being that but then again we are going to Managua and they don't necessarily run on our standards.
by Anne Watcher on Friday June 22nd, 2007 at 1:06pm
The internet is a great tool for searching for information. I soon found that you can rent a small apartment for $350.00 US a month. Pictures are online to see what your getting. I have even found restaurants with their menus online. We have tracked down flights, car rentals, hotels, hot spots to see, bus routes, etc.
Right now I'm watching flight prices to see if there is much change week to week as we are not leaving for about five months yet. So far I have found that if you can get a red-eye flight out of Detroit you can fly for half the price of flying from Toronto. Only problem is that you arrive in Managua at 12:30 am. Having never been there - or any where - we're not sure if it is a wise move.
We have decided to live in Granada which is 40 miles from the airport. So if we take that flight we will have to get hotel rooms for the first night and then hope taxis are still running at that time of night as the airport is about 10 miles outside Managua. Of course our adventurous son said take the flight and sleep in the airport.
Being a HUGE Amazing Race fan I see them do if all the time. Could we? We won't have a camera crew with us so maybe they would ask us to leave? Maybe not though, we could do a lot with the money we'd save!! Will have to consider this more.
by Anne Watcher on Wednesday June 20th, 2007 at 10:45am
We always thought that once the kids left home we would travel, I mean really travel not just across the border to the U.S. So we made a few changes but then got caught up with life and never did it.
This year we found ourselves wanting a change so decided to give up our apartment as of the end of the year and go camping for two months. Which would have still just put us in the U.S. Friends of ours suggested going to Nicaragua instead so we thought why not?
Camping in the south isn't really that exciting. My first thought was I don't know much about Nicaragua but they said that it was beautiful, relatively inexpensive and the people were friendly. Being a photographer my husband was thrilled to plan a trip to the " land of lakes and volcanoes".
So being as the title says "travel virgins", the fun has begun.