Archive | August, 2013

Travel Western Michigan Better

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TBP 0014: Western Michigan Offers Respite for City Dwellers

Posted on 31 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

Travel Western Michigan Better

South Haven, Western Michigan

As I gazed at the sunset over Lake Michigan, I marveled at how different the atmosphere was compared to when I stood at the waters from the opposite side, in Chicago. More nature. Cleaner. Peaceful. Quiet. Desolate in early spring.

These are the characteristics I yearned for during my road trips when I was living in Chicago, but the choices were never as obvious as when I lived in other major cities in the United States.

I found a piece of heaven in Western Michigan that soothed the anxiety and pressure I was constantly experiencing in Chicago.

In today’s podcast I will be talking about my weekend trip (well, mid-week trip) to Michigan to get away from Chicago. I felt much better after this excursion and think it is very important for city dwellers to get into the country and “get the city off of them” once in a while.

TBP 0014 is a shortie so it’s good if you want to squeeze a podcast in while you are driving around running errands this is a good one to pick. 🙂

Happy Travels!

PS: I brought my dog on this trip and as long as you can find a hotel that is pet friendly (I stayed in South Haven, but I understand Holland is even more dog friendly), this should be a good choice for your animal companion. He LOVED playing catch on the beach and it was completely empty so we could really spread out!

South Haven, Michigan
The Beachtowns of Michigan
Douglas, Michigan
Holland, Michigan
Pet Friendly Things To Do in Holland, Michigan

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Arthur Frommer's Book: Europe on Five Dollars A Day

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Check It Out, Uncle Frommer!

Posted on 28 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

Arthur Frommer's Book: Europe on Five Dollars A Day

Arthur Frommer’s Book: Europe on Five Dollars A Day

Photos from Travel Better Podcasts (

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Homeopathic Jet Lag Cure

Posted on 26 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

When I used to fly from Los Angeles to New York on a regular basis, I was always looking for a jet lag cure.

I would take the “red-eye” headed to New York and sleep on the way with a bit of melatonin.

That seemed to work well for me the first day, but after a day or so I always found body wanting to continue with Los Angeles time… Waking up at 11am and going to sleep at 3am, which on the West Coast would be waking up at 8am and going to bed at midnight.

My Favorite Jet Lag Cure

It’s a shame that I didn’t find out about Jet_One_Homeopathic_for_Jet_lag_cureJet One Homeopathic Jet Lag Remedy sooner.

I didn’t learn about this jet lag cure until a few weeks before my trip to Italy this year.

I was skeptical that it would work, but it really did the trick. I was fine after one night’s sleep in both directions, and I even took a trip the day after arriving home that set me back another three hours and, again, I was fine.

My neighbor did not know about this jet lag cure when she went to Italy and when I met up with her several days after she returned from her trip, she said that she still had not adjusted from being on the other side of the planet.

I mentioned that I didn’t experience any jet lag at all and she said that she wishes that that this cure is one of the tips I should have mentioned on the recording I made for her for her trip to Italy (which ended up being the podcast number TBP 0001 of Travel Better Podcasts).

That is why I made this post one of the first ones after launching.   If you jump time zones and need a jet lag cure, and only read a few posts on this site, I hope this is one of them. It will help you a lot.

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TBP 0013 Travel Vermont: Four Wonderful Seasons

Posted on 24 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

TRAVEL VERMONT Grand Summit Hotel at Mt. Snow Vermont during the Winter X Games

Grand Summit Hotel at Mt. Snow Vermont during the Winter X Games

Most people travel Vermont in the fall because of the foliage, or during winter to go skiing.

What many people don’t know is that Vermont is a place that supports outdoor activities year round. It is definitely a state that focuses on getting out and appreciating nature, no matter what the season or weather is like.

So whatever season you find yourself in Vermont, this podcast will help you get some vacation ideas for enjoying scenery.

TRAVEL VERMONT  – TBP 0013 Pocast Notes:

Shopping! Outlets in Manchester and quaint towns – in the south BRATTLEBORO, BENNINGTON, WILMINGTON.  Burlington in the north.
Spas and Retreats
Farms and excellent food
Scenic Drives (except for times in winter when roads are treacherous or Spring when roads can be too muddy)

skiing and snowboarding
Indoor yoga
cross country ski
Snow Tubing


Spring Skiing/Snowbarding in Early Spring
Golf (Later Spring)
Cycling (road)- maybe downhill biking later
Some hiking later in spring
The roads can be VERY MUDDY!

Swimming in pools
Swimming in lakes and reservoirs
GOLF is in “full swing”
Kayaking & Canoeing
Downhill and road biking

*Foliage* First half of October, but make reservations early! Get an areal view from a chairlift or go for a scenic drive.
Golf early in fall
Cycling (road)


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Win Amazon Raffle

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Announcing the Winner of the $25 Amazon Gift Card Raffle!

Posted on 21 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

Win Amazon Raffle

Whew! That was a busy and exciting launch!

I want to thank everyone for helping to get the word out about the site by participating in the Giveaway and sharing with friends!

The raffle closed at 11:59pm EST on August 20th and a winner has been drawn.

The winner of the raffle is Mary Ann Stroud!

Congratulations Mary!

Obviously, I did the raffle because I wanted to create some buzz about my website launch and the podcast, but my overarching goal is to help people ‘travel better’ and to provide them with travel tips and vacation ideas.

This seemed to be the easiest way to find people who would be into the kind if information I provide. Win-Win, ya know!

So now that we’re all here, I would love to discover what destinations or travel questions you have. If I don’t have the answer from my own experience and knowledge, I am networked with enough people that it will allow me to interview the perfect expert related to your question.

Please message me using the contact form, or leave a comment below!

What destination do you want to hear about the most? What do you want to know about that destination? Why do you want to go there?

Again, thanks again for participating in the contest.

Happy Travels!


PS: If you didn’t win this time, be sure to keep in touch with this site, the Facebook page, Twitter, Newsletter and the Travel Better Podcasts on iTunes or MyCast because launching my site with a giveaway was really fun, so I intend to do it again (not the launch part… the giveaway part!). 😉

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My “Heroes and Roll Models” Bookmarks Folder (Part 2)

Posted on 21 August 2013 by Leslie Lello



When I started podcasting it really wasn’t deliberate. I made a recording for a friend about my trip to Italy because I didn’t get to talk to her before she left but wanted to give her tips on what I learned. I recorded what I wanted to tell her in person and emailed her the recording. Then I was like, “Maybe this will help other people” so I posted it to iTunes and that’s how things got rolling.

I decided it was fun to make and made another one. And then another one. And then it just became a thing that I’ve been doing for the past few months.

Then I realized that I should probably listen to other podcasters to see if I can improve my technique.

Not only are the techniques of these podcasters very nice, the content is wonderful, too!

These are the ones I’m hooked on right now. More to come…

Chris Christensen’s Amateur Traveler
This guy is anything BUT an amateur… Great podcasts. Well organized. And don’t worry about running out of episodes. He’s got over 300. He creates both audio and video podcasts.

Gary Bembridge’s “Trips for Travelers”
I found Gary’s website when I was researching how to make my blog and podcast better. He is involved in a group called Travel Bloggers Unite and he recently spoke at a convention about creating better content for travelers. I watched the videos of his lecture from this convention and decided to check out his podcasts which are very rich in information.

The Bowery Boys
I was researching podcasts about New York City and found The Bowery Boys, who talk about the history of New York. This isn’t exactly a travel podcast, but it walks a fine line because the history of New York can turn into a walking tour of New York, which are also available from The Bowery Boys. And they are fun to listen to when they banter. 🙂

Click Here to go to Part One of the series: My “Heroes and Roll Models” Bookmarks Folder

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My “Heroes and Roll Models” Bookmarks Folder (Part 1)

Posted on 20 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

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While this whole site started as a kind of “Oops… I’m podcasting!” kind of thing, the momentum was building for me to have some sort of creative manifestation related to travel.

I have a folder in my bookmarks bar called “Heroes and Roll Models” which contains many of the travel blogs and information sites that I follow to give me information, insight and connection to others who are writing about the glorious experience of travel.

As my kickoff to this site, I would like to share the contents of this beloved folder with you.  Enjoy!  🙂

I have been reading this website for over 5 years and it is a rich resource. The information on the site comes from tips that are from members of the site.  But it is edited (so there’s no spam to sift through.) I sometimes find it hard to navigate because there is so much information, it can be hard for me to re-find a tip unless I bookmark it, so if you visit and find something cool, either save it in an application like Evernote, or bookmark it.  Wonderful resource and great community.
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Posted on 20 August 2013 by Leslie Lello


Today is the official website launch! YAY!

Thank you for signing up for the email updates and for being here on the official day!

My greatest joy  is to travel this planet and to help others enjoy and explore this planet…

While my posts are about travel from a woman’s perspective, and occasionally about travel with pets (because I travel often with pets and it’s becoming more of a thing), I hope that everyone can enjoy the material I present.

In fact, one of my upcoming shows might be about fishing in Alaska or working on a saddle ranch in the Rockies… Destinations that are not stereotypically desirable for women, but that I think have an equal draw to spas and shopping.  It all depends on our mood and what we want to get out of our experience.

Until and beyond then, please share Travel Better Podcasts with your friends and anyone you know that enjoys travel or you think will get something out of the information I provide.

Here are some links to get you and your friends started:




iTunes Podcasts:
Non-iTunes Podcasts: podcasts are the same, but the technical aspects are for different players)
RSS for the whole shebang:
(I use Feedly to follow RSS feeds now that Google Reader is Kaput)
RSS for the whole shebang via Email:


Win Amazon Raffle

If you haven’t gone to the Facebook page to enter the giveaway for the $25 Amazon Gift Card, you still have time but this is the LAST DAY! Click here to go to the entry form!

Use this link to share the page:






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Tomorrow! Tomorrow! Be Here Tomorrow!

Posted on 19 August 2013 by Leslie Lello


I’m giddy.

This is the first time I have done an “official launch” with one of my websites, and even if I am the only person who shows up or gives a darn, I must say that it makes it much more exciting for me. 🙂

I hope that’s true for you, too!

And while I know that I don’t have much up except for the pre-launch page, I am still creating podcasts so you can check those out!

But once tomorrow comes, you will have access to detailed blog posts and notes to the podcasts, as well as travel photos and travel videos, that help you ‘travel better’.

Most important, I will be announcing the winner of the $25 Amazon Gift Card Raffle on August 21st!

The day is almost here. Thanks for sticking with me and keeping up with the site.

If you have listened to the podcasts and like what you hear, please share Travel Better Podcasts with your friends and anyone you know that enjoys travel or you think will get something out of the information I provide.

Again, thank you for reading!  See you here tomorrow!



There is still time to participate in the Travel Better Podcasts Pre-Launch Giveaway for $25 Amazon Gift Card! Click Here to go to the entry form on our Facebook Page.  And while your at it, why not send it off to your friends, especially if they enjoy traveling (and Amazon Gift Cards)!  🙂

Here’s the link to the entry form page to share:

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TBP 0012 The Best Way to Pack a Suitcase (Part 2): Carry-On Luggage

Posted on 17 August 2013 by Leslie Lello

TBP 0012 Photos from Travel Better Podcasts (

When it comes to the best way to pack a suitcase that you plan to carry onto the airplane, the restrictions with airlines can be outrageous.

Sometime of the rules probably do ensure a more safe journey, but many are simply a way for airlines to squeeze more money out of people the travelers they supposedly serve.

This week’s podcast contains ideas on the best way to pack a suitcase when you are carrying it on the plane, and things to keep in mind to prevent you from having to check the bag and pay fees.

And at least on some airlines if you are within the regulations and they still make you check bags, they usually will not charge you. (US AIRWAYS)

Today, we will not be talking about the bag that goes in the overhead compartment.

That bag is usually the bigger one and to that I will only say to weigh and measure your bag thoroughly. There will be another show specifically about the larger of the two carry-ons.

In this podcast we are talking about the best way to pack a suitcase when it is the one that you will have near you on the plane.

There is an art to knowing what you will need throughout the entire flight, and packing properly ensures that you will not need to do that thing that people do where they stand in the main aisle of the plane blocking traffic while awkwardly unlocking their suitcase and fishing for a sweatshirt.

You don’t need to do that if you pack your smaller bag properly.

Today’s podcast helps you do to that!

TBP 0012 The Best Way to Pack a Suitcase for Small Carry-On Luggage Piece:

MY LIST OF CARRY ON STUFF – that I almost always bring on every flight (and store under the seat in front of me)

TBP 0012 Photos from Travel Better Podcasts (

I have links to Amazon for these items because if you are looking to get a number of these items, Amazon is probably the cheapest and fastest way to do it!

I’ve done my best to link to items that have the “Super Saver Shipping” feature – free shipping over $25.  So even though you might be getting a $3 box of earplugs, if you bundle that item with other to reach $25 (other items from the list below or things that you would be buying anyway), you not only pay less than you would if you went out to a store, but you also don’t pay for shipping.

  • Eye Cover: The one I link to is not the one I have but it looks much better. Mine is a good one but is made of a warm material with lots of padding. This makes me sweat and messes up my make-up. I like it, though because it has a small pocket for some earplugs. The next one I will buy will be more like this, with an ear plugs pocket, but much lighter material. The contouring is nice, too!
    Dream Essentials Sweet Dreams Contoured Sleep Mask with Earplugs and Carry Pouch, Black
  • Tablet/iPod/MP3 player and head phones: I travel with an iPod Touch from 2008 (or “vintage” as the folks at Apple say) which is only for music. The tablet I have is a Nexus 7 with 4 Gigs of Memory. I usually load a movie from Google Play at home before the flight so that I don’t have to depend on in flight entertainment or whether the plane has Wi-Fi. I know that iPad is the hip tablet, but I like the Nexus 7 because the smaller screen is less cumbersome and I’m not as worried about damage or loss with this tablet because it’s not pricy. And I hate having technology from 2008 being called “vintage”.
  • Wrist Watch
  • Snacks: I like to pack a box of Ostrich Jerky on every trip.  You can get them at Vitamin Shoppe if you don’t want to order them online, and you should try one stick before buying a whole box because it is definitely a distinct taste.  I also bring nuts, fruit, veggies or chocolate.
  • Melatonin (3mg):  I have used as many as 6 milligrams, but 3mg usually does the trick for me.
  •  Zip Ties / Cable Ties or Suitcase Lock in case you stow it far from where you are sitting. If you use Zip Ties, do not tighten them all the way around the holes for the suitcase lock and be sure you have a scissors OUTSIDE your suitcase, or you will have a lot of trouble getting them off your bag.
  • Ziploc Storage Bag, Quart Value Pack-50 ct: I like quart size because if you are on your trip and the quart size liquids bag you are using to go through TSA breaks, you have another one (or several) for backup. I usually pack 5-6 baggies for a 1-2 week trip.



Attach your reusable Chico Bag to your carry-on. If TSA or the flight crew make you get rid of the disposable grocery bag, shove as much as you can in your carry-on, and carry the water bottle with you. Once you are on the plane, put everything in the Chaco bag.

When I was talking about Melatonin, I also mentioned Ambien. You need a prescription for Ambien, which is a powerful sleeping pill… but it works.

Using a Beach Ball as a pillow: You can use it in front of you as a pillow, or deflate it a bit and use it as a neck pillow.

The post about Jetzone Jet Lag Prevention is coming soon!

I also bring Himalayan Salt – It has helped me relieve headaches, balancing body fluids, provides me with trace minerals.



Win Amazon Raffle

Are you entered in the Travel Better Podcasts Pre-Launch Giveaway yet?

If not, go ahead and click here to go to the entry form where you can liking the Facebook Page, Twittering about the contest to your followers, and following @TravelPodcasts on Twitter will all get you entries in the contest for a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

The Contest ends on August 20th EST at 11:59pm so be sure to do it now! And share the following link with the friends that like travel and that would like the opportunity to participate in the contest, too!  Thanks!

Link to share:

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Welcome and thanks for visiting!

My name is Leslie and I am the owner, publisher and media creator of Travel Better Podcasts.

A few years ago I started traveling... (Click Here For More)

Current Location

New Jersey, USA


I am not a professional or a travel agent. These posts are informational opinions only. Please make your own decisions based on personal research.

Also, there are paid links on this site. There is no obligation on your part to purchase any products advertised on this website.