Roundtrip

Renee & Kim are travel Enthusiasts, sharing personal moments of wanderlust and stories of awe-inspiration!

Hosted by: Kimberly Strong • Sha Rhonda Billups

Produced by: Kimberly Strong


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RoundTrip #012 – Planning for Europe

Released on Tuesday, June 21st 2016 @ 8:39PM

Topics

 

On this week’s show we talk about our upcoming European trip and what you should consider when planning international travel, particularly if you plan to visit multiple countries. We also chat about some of the fun activities and sights that we plan to take in during our trip, including more rock love courtesy of Kim and the lovely structures of Stonehenge.

 

Travel Tips

1. Pick a destination: We polled our #travelsquad, but feel free to throw spaghetti at the wall (not for real though) and pick your top location randomly.

2. Create a budget: We can’t stress enough to stick to your budget unless you got money to blow. If that is the case, bring us something back, preferably something “designer” and in the shape of a purse!

3. Research airlines: You’ve probably heard us talk about low-cost or budget airlines, and Airbnb vs hotels. Take a look at all of these options when planning how you’re getting to Europe and where you’re going to lay your head.

4. Money, Money, Money - MonAAAY: Check the currency that is accepted in the countries that you are visiting, apparently everybody doesn’t take the Euro! Also keep an eye out on the exchange rate and consider bringing along a zero foreign transaction fee credit card or load up a passport card with Euro’s and other currency prior to your trip.

5. What type of experience you want to create: Whether it’s a cultural experience or a full tourist-y tour, compare prices for those activities. However, consider exploring the countries you are visiting with #noplan, you never know what hidden treasures you’ll find.

 

Carry-On

Our Carry-On suggestions focus on long-distance travel. To remain comfortable on your next long trip, stay hydrated by drinking lots of water in advance of your scheduled trip. Also bring along a pair of compression socks for circulation.

Consider your safety and register with the US State Department Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to enroll with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

We suggest planning your trips in advance to take advantage of down payments by using sites such as http://www.deltavacations.com, opting to pay for travel insurance or have a safety credit card for incidentals.
Booking.com and Hopper.com are a few of Renee's suggested websites to track hotel prices and to plan for future flights. Kim prefers to keep it old school and print out travel docs and book directly through hotel and airline websites because she's just a little weird like that...

 

 

 

 

RoundTrip #011 – #travelsquad | Solo Travel

Released on Tuesday, May 10th 2016 @ 9:26PM

Topics

This week we introduce or solo travel “expert” Rebecca! She shares her unique travel experiences, one of which included a machete! Rebecca also gives advice and suggestions on how to prepare for a solo trip and things to consider when traveling alone. For your first or next solo trip be spontaneous but also do some planning for specific activities or sites that you want to see.

 

Carry On

Rebecca’s go-to carry on item is a simple extension cord. This simple and inexpensive item comes in handy and gives you a reason to chat up that cutie hogging the outlet.
Renee mentions the eBags “steals of the day” for new luggage. Kim suggests downloading a few awesome podcasts including the excellent lineup provided by Rogue Intel. 

 

RoundTrip #010 – #travelsquad | Packing in Style

Released on Tuesday, April 12th 2016 @ 12:00AM

Topics

This week we introduce #travelsquad member Shardae, creator of the fashion styling and wardrobe editing company Edit.Cut.Paste. Our style maven shares a story about her worst trip to Miami, and why you should never slather your body in Vaseline. Shardae also provides 8 tips that will make packing for you next trip a breeze, your style sure to slay. . . and your next gram post amazeballs!

#1 - Keep it light: Pack light jackets that can transition from day to night.

#2 - Put some layers on it: Basic tanks and tees can easily be paired with statement necklaces or other accessories to add a little oomph to your travel outfits.

#3 - Fold and shake: Consider bringing a few light dresses or pants that can be folded and shaken out before wearing, look for materials that are wrinkle-free like spandex or polyester.

#4 - Step your shoe game down: Three is the magic number for shoes. Make sure to include an active shoe like the Nike Free running shoe  or the Kenneth Cole active shoe and a thong sandal.

#5 - Protect your jewels: Use tissue paper for necklaces protect your favorite pieces from bending and tangling.

#6 - Prevent make-up woes: To keep your face pretty and your wallet fat, head to your local cosmetic store and pick up tester containers to store your favorite makeup before your next trip.

#7 - Put it in the bag: Weekender bags are your friend, consider investing in a sturdy weekender to pack extra outfits, make up and of course shoes (sometimes you gotta break the rules). Shardae loves her Brahmin Anytime Weekender because it's sturdy and functional.

#8 - Cross-body and concealer: To combat face fatigue after a flight, pack a dual concealer to refresh eyes, blotting sheets to combat oil and to give your face a matte look or use a skin tint such as NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint with SPF 30 . Don't forget to put all of those essentials in a small cross-body bag like the Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac.

 

Carry-On

Don't check your Carry-On! But do check out the Bose Quiet Comfort Noise Cancelling Ear-buds. Or head to your local Dollar Tree and pick up a 7-Day a week pill box to store small post earrings and rings.
 

 

 

RoundTrip #009 – Vegas Fun Without The Gamble

Released on Tuesday, April 5th 2016 @ 10:52PM

Topics

Did you know you can enjoy Las Vegas and not gamble? Did you know you can visit Las Vegas and bring your kids? Well you CAN!

 

For Your Mouth

Las Vegas offers a plethora of dining choices that range from fantastic buffets to unique supper club experiences. Renee and Kim chat about one of their favorite places to chow down in Las Vegas,

Bacchanal at Caesar’s Palace . . .think Bacon Slab. We also recommend The Barrymore at the Royal Palm Resort.

If you’re in the mood for high-end dining, Joel Robuchon or STK by Gordon Ramsey are excellent options. Looking for something a bit more familiar? Las Vegas also has well-known restaurants like Grand Lux & PF Chang’s.

Renee recalls that one time she had to give a little boy the stink-eye and little talking to for sneaking and stuffing fries into his mouth off of a buffet. #getyourkid

 

For Your Entertainment

If you’re looking for entertainment in Las Vegas, try one of the many Cirque du Soleil shows. Most seem to be family friendly, but double check before you book. Live music can be found around every corner in Vegas as well as celebrity-in-residence concerts such as Cameo, Elton John, Santana, and Mariah Carey.

Renee suggests taking advantage of shopping tours or heading to the outlet malls to get your shopping fix.

 

For Your Sense of Adventure

The Nevada desert offers an abundance of activities for those who love the outdoors and want to stay off of the tables. Options include hiking, dune buggies, and dump truck driving. Kim took a day trip to the Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam with Grand Adventures and had a fantastic experience (shout out to Alfonso).

If you want to stay indoors and escape the oppressive Nevada heat, visit the Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay and be sure to say H-E-L-L-O to Otis the Octopus. But don't stick your finger in the Piranha tank. . . Piranhas destroy families.

 

RoundTrip #008 – #travelsquad | Wanderlust & Wine

Released on Tuesday, March 22nd 2016 @ 5:47AM

Topics

This week we are joined by our awesome #travelsquad member Kendra. Renee and Kim sit back drink wine while Kendra shares her travel experiences. One of which includes a 15-hour flight from hell. . .  followed by the fear of a forest abduction. . .  and ends with an epic elephant swim! Whew, I need a drink!

Are you afflicted with wanderlust? Kim thinks she was born this way. Renee feels that she grew into it. Our guest chats about how she came down with a recent bout of wanderlust resulting in an upcoming trip to India. Note: there was some wine involved and a drunk call to Kim. . . Could wine be a wanderlust trigger? Further research is needed. POUR!

Kendra also talks to us about how she manages her wanderlust while being part of a dynamic-duo (yup, she has a hubby).

 

Wine Break

Speaking of wine, Kim and Kendra enjoy a delightful Fume Blanc from Grgich Hills Estate which is one of our favorites! Renee sips on her favorite grocery store Moscato from Jacob's Creek. We reminisce about that one time when Renee got her hand slapped for trying to help herself during a tasting at Cakebread Cellars during our Napa, California jaunt.

 

Carry-On

What is in your carry-on? Our guest suggests ear-plugs as a low-tech solution to help you catch some z's while traveling. Renee shares info on a low-cost carrier airline Norwegian Airlines.

 

 

RoundTrip #007 – Travel + Movies = An Affair to Remember

Released on Tuesday, March 15th 2016 @ 11:56PM

Topics

“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

 

We love talking about movies almost as much as we love to travel, but first we suggest titles for award winning film parodies. . . think “Leo and the Bear.”

Renee defines a travel movie as one that focuses on an internal or external journey. Kim describes travel films as having the location or journey as a character in the story. Deep right? Ok, not really.

Our all-time favorite travel movie picks consist of romances, adventures, fantasy and a rather unorthodox family road trip.

Renee's #1 movie pick, Forgetting Sarah Marshall happens to have been filmed at Hawaii’s Turtle Bay Resort. Surprisingly, a few members of the #travelsquad got kicked of off the beach of that same resort. . . well not kicked out, more like politely asked to leave.

During a sofa meditation session, Kim discovers a love story that she actually enjoys and her #3 pick, An Affair To Remember. On the advice of a friend, she finds The Secret Life of Walter Mitty both entertaining and inspiring.

We both agree that the Lord of the Rings Trilogy is the best fantasy travel movie!

 

Carry On

A travel site that offers surprise destinations Pack Up + Go and the mother load of a backpack (TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible Junior) are our suggestions on this week's Carry On segment.

Check out all of our favorite travel movie picks!

Renee's Picks

Kim's Picks

Bonus Picks

 

Share your travel movie picks with us on Twitter @roundtrippod!

 

 

 

 

RoundTrip #006 – #travelsquad | Miles, Points and Rewards

Released on Tuesday, March 1st 2016 @ 12:00AM

Topics

Our #travelsquad guest Stacey sits in the hot seat and answers our “get to know ya” questions. Anytime a story starts with “so this one time, I almost drowned” you know its going to be good.

Also, Stacey admits to making a few poor travel decisions which prompted #dontbelikestacey.

As our resident expert on all things rewards related, Stacey recommends signing up for an airline rewards credit card that allows for the transfer of miles to different airline programs. Get your reward point situation together, but #dontbelikerenee and miss out on points by booking with third party hotel booking sites.

Renee advises “mile hoarders” to look for cross promotions between partner programs and link your rewards number to those programs. Track your miles using sites like Award Wallet or gain more points by taking surveys using E-rewards.

 

RoundTrip #005 – #travelsquad | Disney and Universal

Released on Tuesday, February 23rd 2016 @ 11:00AM

Topics

Let’s talk about our first time. . . at the Magic Kingdom and Universal Studios. . .  you pervs! Both Renee and our guest, Vonetta, popped their Magic Kingdom cherries . . .  mouse ears, churros and all!

We talk about Disneyland vs. Disney World and how good ole' Disney magic creates a wondrous experience that is both visually stimulating and breath-taking. Both parks creating a fantastic sense of youth that can be enjoyed at any age.

We explore the architectural wonder that is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Fans of the Harry Potter series will especially enjoy the new Diagon Alley experience.

Vonetta, was captivated by the whimsy of SuessLand and found her happy place in the mind of the good Dr. Suess.

The party then moves back to Universal for one more day of fun!

 

RoundTrip #004 – Chocolate Covered Peeps

Released on Tuesday, February 16th 2016 @ 12:00PM

Topics

Happy Valentine’s Day!!! Chocolate covered peeps do exist! What better way to say, “I like you, but not that much” than a gift of chocolate covered peeps?

Renee pays homage to Kim as being the one that connected her back to her long lost traveling roots. Renee’s time in Germany dashing down the autobahn with her mother and eating delicious pretzel sandwiches turns out to be her fondest travel memory.

Kim reminisces on how childhood family vacations have shaped her love for travel. Seems her very first “grown-up” trip to NYC sealed the deal on her love affair with travel.

Since its Valentine’s Day, the conversation takes a turn down the dating lane. If you don’t like to travel and watch football, it looks like Kim isn’t the catch for you. She will pass you a pack of chocolate covered peeps and bid you adieu.  

Renee refuses to put a foot in Kim’s travel shame bucket, but admits that she has chocolate covered peeps on deck! 

 

RoundTrip #003 – Wonders of the World and Rock Love

Released on Monday, February 8th 2016 @ 8:07PM

Topics

Renee makes a trip to the east coast to reminiscence with Kim about the majestic oldness of The Colosseum in Rome, and how we got shutdown when trying to coerce our way in at closing time.

Kim shares her experience tobogganing down the mountains of the Great Wall of China at Mutianyu. She also suggests that you stretch your hammies in preparation for a power walk along the wall. Renee questions the origins of the Great Wall. . .not today Martians. . .not today.

We heart rocks! Renee gives tips on how to see the Grand Canyon by doing a day trip to Williams, AZ and taking the Grand Canyon Railroad. She also shares the fate of Jack and Diane. . . don’t be like Jack and Diane.

In paying tribute to Finding Nemo, we both agree that the Great Barrier Reef would get us closer to our dreams of finding P. Sherman, 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney. We also decide Mount Everest is a soft pass on our list of wonders to experience. I mean we can’t say never but . . .really?

We discover that Kim talks about travel with E-V-E-R-Y-B-O-D-Y including the lady that waxes her, apparently they are really close!

Travel Tips

We share our current reads which coincidentally happen to be revamped fairy tales that take place during modern times. Renee gives us the scoop on why Dorothy Must Die, a young adult trilogy novel by Danielle Pages. Kim discovers chick-lit novel Cinder & Ella and how modern romance helps one woman find her prince charming.

 

 

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