Booking a Trip? Timing Is Everything

The giant travel aggregator site Kayak has some advice for consumers on the best times to book travel in order to snag the cheapest airfares. Drumroll please… Don’t book too early, and don’t book too late. OK, that’s slightly glib. But that’s basically what the site — which says it averages 100 million search queries a month — concluded after sorting through a year’s worth of data. Among its recommendations: Book domestic trips 21 days before departure. Those who went …

How To Start Your Own Volunteer Adventure

While showering one Tuesday morning, I had an epiphany. This enlightened thought inspired me to travel through the forty-eight contiguous states in forty-eight weeks doing volunteer, service, and charity work. The main goal was to promote a “service-to-others” lifestyle by lending a hand to people and organizations of all ages, backgrounds, and affiliations. While the “ah-ha” moment came all at once, getting to that point took several months to figure out what I loved to do and how each of …

If I Go Abroad, What Happens to My Medicare?

No matter what happens this November or in the four years that follow, one thing is for sure: your Medicare coverage won’t be going with you should you decide to retire overseas. Luckily, though, there are many countries where, as a legal resident, you can qualify for a local health care plan that’s often even more comprehensive and less costly than Medicare. Here’s what you need to know:”¨ Medicare doesn’t normally cover health care costs outside the U.S. (And the government’s definition …

Want Better Results at Work? Take a Vacation!

This is a guest post from Nancy Collamer, M.S., a career coach, speaker and author. || According to a 2012 CareerBuilder.com survey, only 65 percent of full-time U.S. employees have taken or plan to take a vacation this year, down from 80 percent in 2007. There are many reasons for this downward trend-financial worries and concerns about job security-but even though these worries are justified, I still think it’s a shame that Americans are increasingly reluctant to take the time off they’ve earned. …

Death by Flip Flop?

  My flip flops are trying to kill me. They look so cute and innocent. But as I just learned the hard way, wearing the minimalist rubber footwear can be hazardous to your health. If you’re heading to the shore, pool or theme park in these last few weeks of summer, know that your choice of shoes just might cut your vacation short. My moment of truth came one afternoon last month when I slipped getting out of a friend’s SUV. True, it …

Why Retiring Abroad Could Save You Money

In a previous blog post, I wrote about one of the key perks of living in Latin America – affordability. I wrote that you can live quite comfortably in Latin America on your Social Security benefits, despite the fact that those benefits have only risen 3.6 percent in the last three years. For a retiree in 2012, the average Social Security benefit is $1,230. One of my favorite treats, I mentioned, is that in Ecuador, I can afford to hire …