The Adventure Gene

The Adventure Gene

GENERAL, INFORMATION
Have you heard of DRD4-7R? Probably not. It is better known as the adventure gene or the wanderlust gene. DRD4 is a receptor that controls the dopamine levels in our brain. Dopamine is a chemical that is released when we experience something that we enjoy, which is what gives us the feeling of reward or pleasure. For some people, dopamine can be released from something as easy as enjoying their favourite food or just enjoying a sunny day. However, some people have lower sensitivities to dopamine, which means it takes more for them to feel reward or pleasure. Extreme sports athletes come to mind when I think of lower sensitivity to dopamine levels. These are the athletes who are chasing 100-foot waves, skiing down near-vertical rock faces and flying their…
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Top 3 Unbelievable Adventures

Top 3 Unbelievable Adventures

GENERAL, INFORMATION
Well, it’s New Year’s Day on this side of the world and that means that it is time to think about what you want to do this year, if you haven’t already. I recently read The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferris. Tim thinks a bit different from the general population and offers many tips and tricks to be more effective and achieve all your life goals. One chapter that I really liked was called “Doing the Unrealistic Is Easier Than Doing the Realistic”. In this chapter, Tim says, “Having an unusually large goal is an adrenaline infusion that provides the endurance to overcome the inevitable trials and tribulations that go along with any goal.” This inspired me to compile a list of my top 3 unbelievable adventures. These are crazy…
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[#89 Lesson] Seek Out Odd Adventures

[#89 Lesson] Seek Out Odd Adventures

INFORMATION, LESSON, TRAVEL
This life lesson relates to my previous blog #89 Go Zorbing. Not many people know about “zorbing” outside of New Zealand. Most people have the same response when they see that item on my list. “Zorbing? What’s zorbing?” I usually say “Have you ever seen videos of people jumping inside of a giant beach ball and rolling down a hill?” They always respond with “Ohhhhh yes of course, that looks so fun!” People don’t know the term, but they know the activity. Zorbing Ever since I was a kid I have always kept an eye out for odd and crazy adventures, and zorbing is a prime example of that. The classic bucket list adventures like walking on the Great Wall of China and seeing the Pyramids of Giza are great…
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Disney Tips and Secrets

Disney Tips and Secrets

INFORMATION, TRAVEL
Below is a list of tips, tricks and packing lists for Disney World, based on my own experiences and after scouring the top Disney planning resources online.  I’ve linked to them a few times below, so it’s worthwhile going through their planning tips as well for more information. Disney World is an amazing experience for young and old, but a little planning in advance can help you save a lot of time waiting in lines and money. Disney World might not be on your bucket list but I’m sure your kids will love you for taking them there. GENERAL DISNEY WORLD TIPS AND SECRETS Guests staying at Walt Disney World Resorts, Disney Swan and Dolphin, and the Disney Springs Resorts get access to the parks an hour early and two…
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Why I Travel

Why I Travel

GENERAL, INFORMATION
The key to my happiness is doing things that I love and one thing I truly love is travelling. Travelling brings me so much joy, and every time I go travelling, I am reminded of why I love it so much. I have always had a running list in my head of the reasons why I travel but I never took the time to write it down. This sounds like some peoples’ approach to bucket lists. Realising this, I decided to take my own advice, so I wrote them down. Here is a list of all the reasons why I travel. I travel… Because it makes me happy To learn about myself To experience new things To attend events Because I like airplanes To collect miniature shampoo bottles To visit…
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[#40 Lesson] Take Time to Make Decisions

[#40 Lesson] Take Time to Make Decisions

BUCKET LIST, INFORMATION, LESSON
This life lesson relates to my previous blog #40 Jeep or Buggy Sand Dunes. When asked whether I wanted to do another 30-minute dune buggy experience for half the price, I said no. It was an amazing deal and an amazing opportunity but I was shattered and didn’t think I would be able to endure another 30 minutes. Turns out all I needed was a little break to recover. By the time I changed my mind, we were on our way back to the Las Vegas strip and I missed my chance. This taught me a valuable lesson about not making decisions in the heat of the moment and taking a break to think. I will be honest; this is one of my weaknesses. When someone asks me a question…
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Flirting With Disaster

Flirting With Disaster

INFORMATION, TRAVEL
My number one travel tip is a difficult one for me to suggest to my clients. The travel motto my husband’s and I have is, “The best trips are the trips where something goes wrong.” We’ve travelled a lot together, we’ve seen beautiful cities, beautiful beaches, met lovely people … but if I’m being honest, there’s something just so vanilla about those trips. Don’t get me wrong, I do not wish disaster upon myself or anyone, but it’s when things go wrong that the opportunity for truly great memories and excellent stories are born. I also think it’s an excellent travel philosophy for anyone who travels frequently, you need to roll with the punches. When you come back from a trip it’s much better to come back ‘glass half full’…
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Credit Card Travel Benefits: Credit Cards vs Travel Cards

Credit Card Travel Benefits: Credit Cards vs Travel Cards

GENERAL, INFORMATION, TRAVEL
This blog post is the fourth, and final, instalment of my Credit Card Travel Benefits Series and continues on from Credit Card Travel Benefits: Cash vs Credit Cards. In my last blog post, I compared the use of cash and credit cards during an overseas holiday. The results concluded that, with all things considered, using credit cards for overseas travel was the better option. In recent years, reloadable travel cards have become more popular and banks have encouraged their customers to use them while travelling overseas. Once you obtain a travel card you can load money onto it, from your bank account, in your local currency and have it converted to any of the currencies supported by the card. When you load the travel card directly from your bank account,…
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Credit Card Travel Benefits: Cash vs Credit Cards

Credit Card Travel Benefits: Cash vs Credit Cards

GENERAL, INFORMATION, TRAVEL
This blog post is the third of my Credit Card Travel Benefits Series and continues on from Credit Card Travel Benefits: Frequent Flyer Points. I never leave home without at least one credit card in my wallet, especially when travelling. In this blog post I will describe how I use cash and credit cards when travelling overseas. I will also look at the pros and cons of each. After almost a decade of travelling the world with credit cards at my disposal, I have developed a system that works quite well for me. Canada is pretty good for the percentage of merchants that accept credit cards but, since living in New Zealand, I have realised that the percentage is even higher here. Credit cards are so widely accepted in New…
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Travelling With a Baby: Our Experience

Travelling With a Baby: Our Experience

GENERAL, INFORMATION, TRAVEL
I’m sure that a lot of readers of this blog aren’t even thinking about having kids at this time. But there are a lot of millennials following as well, and one by one you’re each getting plucked off the singles list, getting married, and inevitably having kids (or likely skipping getting married and putting that money toward a house or trip!). When you have kids, there’s no need to ditch your travelling habits or shelve your bucket list for when the kids grow up – it’s just time to restructure and reorganize it. Are there trips on your list that are more baby friendly than others? Perhaps, there are some great places you would like to go that would be great for when your little one is 4-6 years old,…
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