How to Best Combat Credit Card Fraud

How to Best Combat Credit Card Fraud

As we head into the holiday season, your credit and debit cards are probably going to see a lot of traffic as you buy gifts for your friends and family. While identity theft is a widespread issue, taking some basic fraud protection steps will allow you to shop confidently and securely throughout the holiday season. If you’re traveling, you can also do small things to protect yourself in big ways without worrying. Online Security Measures Cashing in on hot, online holiday deals is tempting to do anytime. However, while you’re out of the house, it’s best to avoid logging into secure sites or entering credit card payments while you’re on a public network. Unencrypted, or open, networks are just that: open for anyone to access. That makes it easier for people who are paying attention to get a peek (even if it’s over your shoulder) at your data. Also, before you check your email or even surf the web, confirm the name of the local network at the coffee shop or library with an employee to make sure you’re using their vetted network. You don’t want to mistakenly hop onto a free Wi-Fi network setup for a phishing or hacking scheme. Way back when you set up your home network, you likely had to enter a password to get online. That encryption is a vital level of security between you and outside sniffers who are looking for personal information. If your home Wi-Fi hasn’t been secured, contact your service provider or a networking professional to update your router settings. Travel Tips for Safe Travels Credit cards make it easier...
End Summer Right & Make Time for Play this Labor Day Weekend

End Summer Right & Make Time for Play this Labor Day Weekend

It rolls around every year. Many people see it as the end of summer and the transition to fall. It’s the time of year when school swings back into session and you and the kids have one last three-day weekend to enjoy before the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Labor Day Weekend is more than just a relaxing time to crank out one more backyard barbecue. Its roots extend back to the beginnings of the organized labor movement and signify the importance of rest, health and family. A Brief History of Labor Day In the late 19th century, the labor movement was disrupting the 7-day workweek. The weekends that so many of us take for granted are the direct result of the protests and union organizing that was happening mostly in the northeastern factories. September 5, 1882 marks the date of the first Labor Day Parade in New York City. The then burgeoning unions chose this day as a “workingman’s holiday” because it fell halfway between Independence Day and Thanksgiving. The idea of a singular day off in late summer caught fire with the states quickly, but it wasn’t a nationally recognized holiday until 1894 when President Grover Cleveland signed the bill passed by Congress, making Labor Day Weekend official law of the land. Put Away The To Do List Labor Day, and your right to celebrate was a hard-won battle fought well over a century ago by foundry workers and machinists who believed that everyone needed more time to chill. While it’s a given that the words “Labor Day Sale” are filling up your inbox, and you likely have a laundry...
8 Must-Have Tech Tools to Bring on Your Next Trip

8 Must-Have Tech Tools to Bring on Your Next Trip

With airlines adding more affordable flights to their schedules, traveling has become more accessible to a wider audience these days. The great part about visiting other destinations is that it allows us to taste exotic foods, acquire a global perspective and better understand cultures different from ours. Thanks to the latest technology gadgets, traveling is now much more convenient, safer, and enjoyable than ever. Whether you are a frequent flyer or a first-time traveler, learning to travel light will save you time and energy. Packing the appropriate tech gadgets is key in making sure you not only have a great trip but that you don’t over-pack with unnecessary items. We’ve come up with a list of top 3 tech gadgets that you will need the most while traveling. Navigation Maps and GPS (global positioning system) are of essential when traveling. This has revolutionized how today’s generation travels. With GPS you can easily find museums, parks, restaurants or other landmarks, whether you are traveling on foot, by train, car or bicycle. Apart from showing directions GPS also calculate distance, give traffic alerts as well as the best options for various modes of transportation. Translator Dictionary One of the cool features on your smartphone is the ability to translate basic words and sentences into different languages. There are several apps online that can be downloaded depending on the language or simply use Google translate. A translator or dictionary comes in handy when asking for directions, negotiating discounts, ordering meals or finding a restroom. Movies & Music There is no better way to kill time when waiting at the airport, bus or train...
7 Great Tips to Stay Fit When You Travel

7 Great Tips to Stay Fit When You Travel

Summer is here which means warmer weather, longer days, weekend get-aways or maybe that long anticipated vacation has finally arrived. You’ve worked hard all year to save money, get in shape and now here comes the reward. There is just one tiny wrinkle: our fitness achievements are now in jeopardy of going sideways the moment we see of an-all-you-can-eat buffet. The following are a few easy to follow tips that will still allow you to indulge a bit when traveling without going overboard (pun intended) and completely crushing your healthy diet and fit lifestyle. 1. Choose Foods High in Protein We tend to eat out more when we travel. For some of us this is the best part: partaking in new foods we wouldn’t normally eat at home. When eyeing those mouth-watering buffets and all you can eat menus, try and choose protein over carbs. This will help stabilize your blood sugar and curb cravings for unhealthy sugary foods or carb-heavy options. Plus protein will stay with you longer and give you the energy for that fun excursion or next item on your agenda. 2. Eat Small Amounts S-L-O-W-L-Y Research has shown we are more likely to binge eat when we travel. By limiting your calorie intake in a single sitting will give you the energy without feeling like you just lapsed into a food coma. Eat slowly, enjoy the ambience, savor the texture and unique tastes in your mouth. You may find you eat a lot less when you just take your time and truly enjoy the moment. 3. Pack Snacks When we travel, we don’t generally have the same access...
How Spending Time in Nature Transforms Us

How Spending Time in Nature Transforms Us

Nature is all around us. If we take a good look around, we are immersed in nature, whether it’s with our beloved pets or in our landscaped neighborhoods or even the plants in our yard. Nature is essential for our survival as well as our sense of well being and happiness. According to E. O. Wilson, “Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and even spiritual satisfaction.” As humans we are interconnected with nature every day, whether we acknowledge it or not. On a continual basis, nature has a profound impact on our lives yet it is largely taken for granted. It even dictates how and what we eat by impacting which foods grow and are harvested each year. Our lives are predicated on the availability of our natural resources. Nature Relieve Stress We are greeted with fresh air and sunlight as we step outside to start our day.  The wind on our face contains moisture that hydrates us and cools our skin and gives us a sense of peace. Renowned Professor and author, Richard Ryan states that:  “Nature is fuel for the soul. Often when we feel depleted we reach for a cup of coffee, but research suggest a better way to get energized is to connect with nature.” By connecting with nature, we are better able to connect to a part of our selves, often lost in the rush of our frantic hurried lives. Nature is a natural anti-depressant, helping us to recharge, reconnect and feel renewed. Nature Influences Playtime Think back to a time when we were kids. Nature provided our first playground. It gave us the leaves to pile up and jump into, trees to climb, rocks to skim. As kids, nature brought us...
5 Sure Fire Ways to Avoid Getting Sick When You Travel

5 Sure Fire Ways to Avoid Getting Sick When You Travel

Summer is a great time for traveling with the family but it can be also too risky for those prone to sickness.  Travel sickness is a very common problem that could ruin your well-planned summer vacation travel.  Some people can get sick just using the various modes of transportation, like airplanes or cars, while others suffers headaches from weather or altitude change or worse of all, food poison.  So let’s take a look at some great traveling tips that may help you enjoy your summer holiday without having to worry about you and your family’s health. 1. Prepare a First-Aid Kit Always better to be safe than sorry.  Make sure to pack a small first aid kit with supplies such as bandages and Neosporin.  It also makes sense to include pain and allergy relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, antihistamines and other quick relief medicines that will help you in times of trouble.  Packing this a week ahead of your trip will give you enough time to make sure you have all you need in case of emergency.  It is also best to know any environmental risks (any plants or vegetation in the area that may trigger allergies?) prior to heading to your destination. 2. Bring Insect Repellent Insects, and in particular, mosquitoes can pose a huge challenge in certain regions around the world. To avoid getting bit, protect yourself with a good repellent that lasts for at least 8-12 hours.  Re-apply often, especially if you are going on a camping trip or hiking with your family.  It is also essential to wear the proper leg coverings when hiking;...