Savvy Travel

For Peter, the world is an exciting, challenging and fun place that is just ready for us to explore—but before you leave home, it's important to do a little homework. "Plan, plan, plan," Peter says. "It's the biggest thing to do to make sure the trip is fun, efficient and, above all, safe."

Planning a summer road trip? Mike Pina, director of public relations at AAA, says there are ways to cope with rising gas prices if you're traveling by car. He shares with Peter the following road-travel tips:

  • Make sure your car is in top running order.
  • Travel the shortest distance from point A to point B to conserve gas.
  • Use online mapping tools to track gas stations with the best prices.
  • Provide kids with snacks and entertainment for the car ride.

If you're traveling by air this summer, Peter says the best thing you can do is chill out. "Have a calm, Zen attitude and stay positive as you move through airports, because everybody is trying to do the right thing to keep you safe and make air travel safe," he says.

Peter calls on Ellen Howe from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), who says there are a number of ways to make airport travel stress-free.

  • Arrive early.
  • Know the rules, especially the 3-1-1 rule for acceptable carry-on luggage: 3-ounce bottles or less, in a one quart plastic bag, one bag per passenger at the checkpoint.
  • If you have to bring a medical exception to the 3-1-1 rule, Ellen says to declare the item, which will then be inspected and most likely allowed through.
  • Remember that there are no liquid restrictions for checked luggage.
  • Wear shoes that go on and off quickly.
  • Remove computers from laptop bags.
  • Remove outer layers of clothing, such as blazers, before passing through security checkpoints.

Tony and Maureen Wheeler, the names behind the popular Lonely Planet travel guides, met back in 1970. The couple has been together ever since—brought together by their mutual love of travel and adventure.

Today, their company has 600 publications and 460 guide books to countries around the world. While Lonely Planet books have all the information you need to be a savvy traveler, Maureen tells Peter there's really only one essential ingredient for a great trip. "All you need is a spirit of adventure and curiosity—a desire to get out there and see it, wherever 'it' is," she says.

Peter says his good friend, Andrew Mersmann, has one of the coolest jobs around—he's a travel writer. Andrew says that one of the top trends in travel today is something called "voluntourism," a unique combination of travel and humanitarian efforts. "People want to get immersed in a culture when they visit and maybe still come home to nice hotel room at night, but they want to give back a little bit and get out of the walls of resorts," he says.

For those interested in volunteer work combined with travel, Andrew says there are numerous options, and he shares two good places to start: Seek out organizations that focus on rebuilding after weather catastrophes, or volunteer with a wildlife preservation organization, where you can assist with the research and protection of endangered animal species.