tricks to make travelling easier

Who doesn't know the feeling of excitement creeping in before one goes off on an adventurous journey to conquer unknown cities and countries? The more excited one gets, the easier it is to forget one or more important items. Therefore, I find it useful to have a checklist ready and be 100% prepared. So here's some useful travel-tipps along with the link to our thorough luggage checklist. 

1. Get a travel wallet and a coin purse.
The wallet will fit all of your travel utilities: passport, boarding pass, hotel vouchers, bills and whatever else you'll need to carry on yourself.
The Coin Purse comes in handy when travelling from and to airports by public transportation. You can put in some dollars and quarters beforehand so you'll have enough change to pay for a metro or train ticket, but you don't have to keep it together with the more important things in your wallet. Also, you can throw in any spare change you accumulate, and use it to pay for minor stuff like drinks at a supermarket. That way, you'll get ride of the coins in the foreign currency, which you can not change back at home anyway.
For example the 'anything to declare?' travel wallet by Kate Spade ($298) or the cute 'tech me on your trip' coin purse from ModCloth ($20)

2. Be sure to know the neighbourhood of your hotel.
When travelling to a city you don't know much about, be sure to check out the neighbourhood of your hotel (preferably before choosing the hotel..). You can do this generally via Google Maps or Google Earth, which is actually pretty cool because you can virtually walk the streets around your hotel and you'll have a better orientation once you get there. Scout out subway stations or grocery stores nearby and look for places to have dinner.
My favorite site to learn about different neighbourhoods is TripAdvisor. You can read the comments in the comment section below your hotel of choice, I've avoided many bad choices like that.

3. Inform yourself about City- and Public Transportation Passes.
Many cities offer special passes, which let you travel with transportation and give you special discount on attractions. CityPass is one of them, which is available for several US and Canadian cities. From personal experience, I can say it's worth the money. It gives you free access to public transportation for several days, plus free admittance to the most popular attractions, and you can save up to $150 (thats about my estimation) with it.
Also make sure to grab a map of the local subway or metro services at the front desk of your hotel or print it out beforehand. That way, you can already check which station you need to go or which line to take to see some of the attractions you plan on visiting. Write the connections down if you want to. It will make sightseeing a lot easier, that way you won't have to pull out a huge-ass folding map in the middle of the sidewalk.
It also pays off to buy them online in a few cases - there's a lot of agencies that offer a considerable online discount.

4. Make a Checklist!
Or, if you're too lazy to do one, take ours. It saves you a lot of nerves and time, and you will have every little thing you need and you would probably forget. On 9 out of 10 holidays, I end up without socks, which is pretty annoying. So I came to appreciate checklists.

Travel Checklist

This is how it's supposed to work; add the top two categories, together with the 'general items' list, to the Trip of your choice (below) and you'll have a complete checklist that won't fail you.
Feel free to print it out or just use it online. 

Before I leave my house I..

In my handluggage I pack..

General Items  
but do not belong in hand luggage

Cell Phone Charger
Camera Charger
Extra Storage Card for Camera
Make-up Bag
Shower Gel/Shampoo
Hair Brush
Straightening Iron/ Blowdrier if needed
Tootbrush/ Toothpaste
Case and Solution for Contacts
Glasses with cleaning towel
Skin Care Products
Rubber bands/ Hair Ribbons
Bobby Pins 

Then I'm ready to go on my..

Summer City Trip
Summer Beach Vacation
Winter City Trip
Ski Ttrip

Summer City Trip

For a 7 day city trip I pack..
given I probably change at least once a day.

3 pairs of Shorts 
3 pairs of Skirts
3 Maxi-Dresses (those are the best for sightseeing in summer)
1 pair of long Pants
4 Cardigans (light and warmer ones)
1 Sweater
2 light Jackets
5 basic Tanks/ Shirts/ T-Shirts
2 Shirts/ Blouses
1 little black dress
1 pair of closed Shoes (in case of rain)
1 pair of whatever shoes you feel most comforatble with walking all day
1 pair of Sandals or
1 pair of Ballerinas
1 pair of black Heels that match with every outfit
matching jewelry for each outfit
1 big shopper
1 small black purse
favorite sunglasses

1 big hat
2 pajama bottoms
2 shirts to sleep in
2 pairs of thights (black and nude, you never know if it gets windy or cold at night)
2 or 3 light scarves
nail polish for your toes, just in case
1 belt

Any suggestions/ things we forgot? Leave them in the comment section!