Monday, March 5, 2012

Travel Tips from CGE-Minneapolis

CGE has several upcoming travel seminars in Mexico. We’re also gearing up for sending off summer study abroad students to Mexico in a few months. We thought some of you traveling with CGE might be looking for travel tips. CGE-Minneapolis is here to help.While we may not have the in-country expertise of our colleagues in Cuernavaca, we are the folks that often have to travel to and from CGE locations around the world.Sometimes frequently! So we thought we’d put together a list of our top travel tips. We hope they help you as you plan to study abroad or travel abroad in Mexico.
From Olee Amata, Program Assistant, International Travel Seminar:
“I always carrying toilet paper with me. Travel-size tissue paper works great! I also like to bring wet wipes, and hand sanitizer too. When traveling, you don't want to be caught without TP!!! Toilet paper is not always readily available like it is in the U.S. and if it is, sometimes you have to pay for it!”

“When traveling internationally, always make sure that your passport does not expire for at least a year out. If your passport will be expiring soon, or the same year you are traveling, I would suggest applying for a new one. Most people don't know that some countries require you to have your passport valid for a least six months before the date you will be departing from their country.”

From Fatimah Panemalaythong, Administrative Assistant:
“It's always handy to have a few of plastic bays around for certain items such as toiletries or dirty clothes.”

“Don't draw attention to yourself, avoid wearing flashy jewelry and don't display large amounts of cash. Carry only enough cash and leave the rest in a safe.”

From David Hamilton, Director of International Travel Seminars:
“Travelers often don't realize they have a different standard of tolerance until they are in another country. For instance, if we told students that they will have to bathe with a bucket in a rural homestay, they might complain about it. However, nobody ever complains about doing these things after the trip. After students get in another environment and get welcomed by a family who is often giving up their bed for the students, they can easily adapt to it.”

From Regina McGoff, Director of the Center for Global Education:
“Zip up everything once you're done using it so you don't take unexpected guests home!”

“Eye masks and earplugs are your friends for sleeping better in loud areas, shared rooms, etc. (as well as a little Tylenol PM!!”

From Emerald Tribuno, Program Associate for International Travel Seminars:
Carabiners. I always bring at least 2 and they come in handy so often. I use them to:
1) air dry clothing if you don't have any hangers
2) clip my purse to a loop on my pants in busy areas filled with people when I am worried about theft (use a locking clip for this one)
3) hook my carry on and rolling suit case together or shopping bags
4) keep hair binders in one place
5) hang a hammock
6) clip muddy shoes, a hat or water bottle to my backpack
7) emergency zipper if yours breaks on your luggage, zipper pulls, additional layer of security to detour theft (hooking 2 zippers together like on a backpack)
However, note that if you pack them in your carry on and go through Munich security they will search your bag looking for your brass knuckles.”

“I always bring a couple of packets of dry-mix gatorade with me to countries where I anticipate intestinal distress. After one trip to Mexico where I was too sick to leave my room and go in search of something with electrolytes, I've carried them with ever since.”

From Jesse Haas, Coordinator of Recruitment and Promotions:
Skip the souvenirs. As people go through life, souvenirs can’t always come with– especially if you’re young and have many life transitions ahead of you. When you’re packing up a tiny Toyota to move across the country for a new job, you will more than likely choose your pots and pans (or your dog, in my case) over boxes of items purchased while abroad. Souvenirs often get donated or left behind. Instead of souvenirs, keep a journal. They take up less space and nothing is more valuable than your thoughts and reflections from your time abroad. If you want to support the local community, purchase a few gifts from artisans to give to others upon returning home.


  1. Nice content with excellent tips!

  2. Excellent tips with marvellous blog post.

  3. These are all very useful tips. Especially the tip about souvenirs. It's better to purchase a small local made item directly from the artisans, than to give someone a t-shirt that was most likely made somewhere else. It not only supports the local economy, you also have a story to behind the gift.

    My travel tip: Since I am a person with a life threatening shellfish allergy. I bring 2 Epinephrine pens and 2-4 travel translation cards in the language of the country I am visiting. So when I'm out eating, the server and I can communicate with each other on food selections I should avoid. It is also helpful to seek out local markets in the area where I am staying. So if the choices are limited for where I can eat; I can always fall back on some fresh fruits, veggies, and bread.

    Here is the link where I get my travel translation cards:

    They are invaluable!

  4. This some of you traveling with CGE might be looking for travel tips. These all tips really very useful to me. After reading this information we can know that how to over come this problem if we face this.