The 5 Simple Ways to Add to Your Vacation Fund without Feeling Deprived

person putting coin in a piggy bank

Vacation is a time to relax and recharge, but can be quite an investment for many people.  You work hard for your money and you deserve the best value for your budget. Today, I want to help you grow your vacation fund so that you can the break you need!

Did you know the average cost of a summer vacation for a family of four is over $4,000. Yikes! Even a romantic 7-day honeymoon for 2 can cost upwards of $3,000 when all is said and done – and that’s just with a basic one!

Most people decide to save for vacation by cutting back on spending in other areas, but that can be hard to do and often leads to feeling deprived or like you’re missing out on life.

But what if there were a way to make saving for vacation fun, easy and something you actually looked forward to?

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Multiple Ships Debut Delayed

Nobody wants to hear about delays but it has been reported over the last few weeks that multiple cruise lines are facing severe delays in the construction of their new ships. The most recent of which is the Carnival Jubilee set to be the largest ship in their lineup, will unfortunately be seeing its maiden voyage slip from an October, 2023 sailing to a merrier Christmas, 2023 debut.

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The Best Small Towns to Visit in America

There’s something special about small towns. They have a charm and a character that you just can’t find in big cities. Maybe it’s the slower pace of life, or the close-knit community feel. Whatever it is, there’s no denying that small towns have a lot to offer visitors.

If you’re looking for a unique travel destination, then look no further than these five small towns in America. From the historic streets of Boston to the quaint fishing villages of Maine, there’s something for everyone in these charming places.

Boston, Massachusetts

As the capital of Massachusetts, Boston is steeped in history. From the iconic Freedom Trail to the iconic Fenway Park, there are plenty of things to see and do in this small town. If you’re a fan of seafood, then you’ll definitely want to check out the famous Quincy Market district, where you’ll find some of the best seafood in the country.

Portland, Maine

Situated on the majestic Casco Bay, Portland is a popular tourist destination for its stunning coastal scenery and abundance of outdoor activities. Visitors can enjoy whale-watching tours, hiking trails, and even take a ferry ride to one of the many nearby islands. For those who enjoy fresh seafood, Portland is definitely the place to be. With its numerous seafood restaurants and markets, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to finding somewhere to eat.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport is a small town with a big reputation. This historic town is home to some of America’s most prestigious universities, as well as renowned museums and art galleries. If you’re looking for a cultural experience, then Newport is definitely worth a visit. And if you love being outdoors, then you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to activities like sailing, golfing, and hiking.

Charleston, South Carolina

Charleston is a beautiful small town located on the coast of South Carolina. This historic town is known for its antebellum architecture and stately mansions which line the streets. If you’re a fan of southern food, then you’ll definitely want to check out Charleston’s famous restaurants which serve up some of the best cuisine in the country. And if you love shopping, then you’ll be spoilt for choice with all of the boutique shops that line King Street.

Annapolis, Maryland

Annapolis is another small town located on America’s east coast. This charming town is known for its maritime history and abundance of 18th-century buildings. Visitors can enjoy exploring the US Naval Academy Museum or take a boat tour around Chesapeake Bay. And if you love seafood, then you’ll definitely want to check out one of Annapolis’ many seafood restaurants which serve up some of the best crab cakes in Maryland. 

Small towns offer visitors a unique travel experience that you can’t find in big cities. From historic sites to picturesque coastline views, there’s something for everyone in these charming places. So if you’re looking for somewhere different to travel this year, why not consider one of these five small towns in America? You won’t be disappointed!

Here at Love of The Magic Vacations, we specialize in bringing your vacation dreams to life while providing outstanding service and peace of mind every step of the way.

Contact me “Windy Dockum” for a free vacation quote

The Top 5 Advantages to Using a Travel Agent vs. Planning Your Own Travel

woman looking at the map

Ever planned a vacation and it didn’t turn out even close to the way you wanted?

Chances are, you probably didn’t use a travel agent.

It’s kind of like when you need your car fixed – unless you’re a mechanic, you’re probably going to need some help.

I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t tell the difference between the fuel injector and an A/C compressor if my life depended on it.

The same goes for planning vacations.

There are so many moving parts and pieces, that it’s easy for something to get lost in the shuffle – especially if you’re trying to do it all yourself.

There are several reasons why you should use a travel agent to plan your vacation instead of planning it yourself, but I’ll give you my top ones here in case you haven’t used one before:

Here Are the Top 5 Advantages to Using a Travel Agent vs. Planning Your Own Travel:

1. Travel Agents Save You Hours of Planning Time & Stress

Let’s say you want to plan a family trip to a foreign country, but you’ve never been. Where do you start? What are the must-see sights? What’s the fastest & safest way to get around the country?

A good travel agent is already very knowledgeable about the destinations they sell and can help you plan your dream vacation without all of the stress. Researching your destination takes time on your own, but a travel agent can do it for you quickly and easily!

Think about your hometown. Wouldn’t it be easier to list off the “must-do” activities & places to stay in that area than someone who’s never been there or doesn’t know anything about it?

That’s just like a travel agent! They’ve most likely visited or researched the area multiple times, so they already know all the best places to go, things to see & do and how to navigate – you’ll save so much work by using a travel agent!

2. Travel Agents Offer You the Best Value for Your Budget

When many people DIY their own vacations, they often look for the “cheapest pricing”.

Let’s say a honeymoon couple has a budget of $5000 for their 7-night trip. A “DIY” traveler would start googling “hotels in X destination” and then probably proceed to filter for the “cheapest ones”, right?

But what if the “cheapest ones” don’t include daily breakfast, hotel taxes, have a really bad reputation in the industry or are located in a less than desirable area of the destination where travel to activities requires a 30-minute cab ride? No one wants these “surprises” when booking their own vacation.

On the other hand, a good travel agent will work with you to figure out what’s most important to their travelers.

Do you want an all-inclusive resort with top-notch dining options? Or maybe a boutique hotel located in the heart of the bustling city? A rental car? Travel by train?

When using a travel agent to plan your vacation, they will help identify what’s most important to you and find the best option that meets your needs – not just find you the cheapest options – that’s for amateurs. Travel agents focus on the best “bang for your buck!”

And remember, you get what you pay for when it comes to travel.

3. Travel Agents Can Pass on “Extra Perks”

When you book your own travel, you’re usually just another transaction for that website or call center.

But when a travel agent books your trip, they often have personal & longstanding relationships with the suppliers (hotels, resorts, tour companies, etc) and can often get “extras” for their clients because of it!

Maybe it’s an upgrade to a nicer room, a free bottle of champagne upon arrival, or a 10% discount on a tour or activity. These “extras” can really add up and enhance your overall vacation experience without costing YOU anything more!

And it’s not just the “big things”, but also the little things that can make a difference.

For example, perhaps the concierge at your hotel knows your agent and gives you a priority seating in their luxurious restaurant for your 10th anniversary dinner. Or, perhaps your tour guide goes out of their way to make your experience even better because they know you are a client of the travel agent who arranged the tour.

You don’t often get this type of attention or service when you book everything on your own.

4. Travel Agents Help You Avoid Vacation-Ruining Mistakes

Even if you’re a seasoned traveler, there are always new things to learn about the travel planning process – and that’s where a travel agent can help! With their vast experience and knowledge, they can help you avoid the most common mistakes people make when planning their own vacations.

Ever made a mistake when spelling your name on an airline ticket? Forgotten about the 6-month passport rule? Wore camouflage in the Caribbean? Entered the wrong dates for travel? Or accidentally booked a one-way ticket instead of a round-trip ticket? These may seem like small things, but they can have major consequences and ruin your entire trip.

But when you use a travel agent, they will take care of all the details for you – big and small – to make sure your vacation goes off without a hitch!

5. Travel Agents Provide Peace of Mind.

When you book your own travel, YOU are usually on your own and held responsible if something goes wrong. But when you use a travel agent, they will be there to help you every step of the way – before, during, and after your trip.

If your flight gets cancelled or you miss a connection, a travel agent will be there to guide you on rebooking your flights and making alternate arrangements. If your hotel situation is not as expected, a travel agent will be there to advocate for you and get the situation resolved. And if you have any problems or questions while on your trip, a travel agent will be just a phone call away to help resolve the issue.

What would happen if you planned your own trip and had an emergency occur? You would be on your own to figure everything out! Travel insurance, rebooking tickets, possible medical bills, etc. No one wants to think about these things, but they can and do happen. And if they do, you will be glad you have a travel agent in your corner!

And remember 2020? Do you know that many agents spent 8+ hours on the phone just to rearrange ONE airline ticket for their client? Who’s got time for THAT? That’s the type of peace of mind and level of service you can expect when you use a travel agent.


As you can see, there are many advantages to using a travel agent when planning a vacation. So why not let someone else do the work for you and take the stress out of planning your next trip? After all, vacations are supposed to be fun, relaxing, and worry-free!

Here at Love of The Magic Vacations, we specialize in bringing your vacation dreams to life while providing outstanding service and peace of mind every step of the way.

Contact me “Windy Dockum” for a Free Vacation Quote

The Benefits of Family and Multigenerational Travel

When it comes to travel, there are countless options available. You can go solo, with friends, or with family. You can stay close to home or venture out to a far-flung destination. You can even mix and match, going on a girls’ trip one year and a family vacation the next. But have you ever considered combining multiple generations into one trip? If not, you might be surprised by the benefits that family and multigenerational travel can offer.

Quality Time Together

One of the main benefits of multigenerational travel is that it can help to foster closer relationships between family members of different ages. On a typical vacation, kids might be off doing their own thing while the adults relax. But on a multigenerational trip, everyone is together more often, which gives everyone a chance to interact and bond with one another. This can be especially beneficial for grandparents and grandchildren who live far apart and don’t get to see each other very often.

Educational Opportunities

Travel is one of the best teachers out there. When you take your family on vacation, your kids will have the chance to learn about different cultures, customs, and histories—all while having a great time. There are plenty of kid-friendly attractions all over the world that make learning fun, so don’t be afraid to mix a little education in with all that relaxation time!

Save Money

Another benefit of family and multigenerational travel is that it can save you money. When you book one big trip for your whole extended family, you’ll usually be able to take advantage of group discounts on airfare, hotels, and activities. And since everyone is together in one place, you won’t have to worry about footing the bill for separate vacations.

A Chance to Unplug

In our tech-obsessed world, it’s important to unplug and disconnect from time to time. Family vacations provide the perfect opportunity to do just that. With no work or school obligations to worry about, you can all enjoy some much-needed quality time together without any distractions. And who knows? Maybe you’ll even get your kids to put down their phones for a few days!

Family vacations offer something for everyone—quality time together, educational opportunities, a chance to unplug from technology, and save money. So if you’re looking for a way to bond with your loved ones and create some lasting memories, consider planning a trip with your extended family. You won’t regret it!

Here at Love of The Magic Vacations, we specialize in bringing your vacation dreams to life while providing outstanding service and peace of mind every step of the way.

Contact me ‘Windy Dockum” for a free vacation quote

Disney Reinstates in Person Muster Drills

Prior to March of 2020, before all the cruise lines had to shut down due to the pandemic, the beginning of your cruise would have started off with a large gathering of passengers and crew aboard deck. This of course was the mandatory muster drill that every cruise goer was required to attend. However, when cruising came back after the pandemic large crowds of people was something that was avoided and the birth of the virtual muster drill came into being, but now that might be going away as well.

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Masks are Back? Covid-19 Protocols Reinstated

The symbol of Covid-19

It’s been almost 3 years since the start of the pandemic, and even less time has passed since cruising has made its come back. Just recently major cruise lines have dropped all Covid restrictions and protocols aboard the ship, however due to a recent mass covid outbreak aboard a cruise ships those protocols are back in place.

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