Phoenix is known as the Valley of the Sun, and with its year-round sunshine, it’s not hard to guess why. If you’re planning a trip but are stuck on locations, then you may want to consider Phoenix. Even if you’re unfamiliar with this destination, and you’re not even sure what time zone is Phoenix, you’ll want to visit ASAP. Buzzing with incredible landscapes, amazing wildlife, and so much more, Phoenix will provide you with plenty of places to explore, so you can make some amazing memories. Tempted? If so, here are some suggestions for what to do in Phoenix, Arizona.

Visit the Desert Botanical Garden

If you want to admire some stunning plant life, then make sure that you visit the Desert Botanical Garden during your trip. Located in Papago Park, this 140-acre botanical garden boasts an incredible collection of plants (totaling in about 50,000) which include cactuses and agave. It is also home to an impressive art exhibition of over 1,000 animal sculptures, known as ‘Wild Rising.’ The sculptures are all made from recyclable plastic and can be seen on display in the garden in all their glory. The Desert Botanical Garden includes some great trails that allow visitors to see all the unique plants. If you want awesome views, you can hike to the top of the Sonoran Desert Nature Loop Trail which gives you a view of the mountains that surround the garden.

Explore the Mystery Castle

Do you have a love for mysteries and a strong sense of curiosity? If so, you’ll want to explore one of Arizona’s most unique landmarks, the Mystery Castle. As the name suggests, this castle has an interesting history; built in the 1930s by Boyce Luther Gulley as a gift for his daughter, Mary Lou, the property was reportedly constructed using an odd combination of materials including stone, adobe, automobile parts, rail tracks from a mine and telephone poles. Gulley also allegedly mixed goat milk with mortar, cement, and calcium to keep the three-story castle held together. The castle garnered media attention after Gulley died from tuberculosis in 1945 and left the castle to Mary Lou and her mother. Mary Lou and the castle were featured in an article in Life Magazine with the headline ‘Life Visits a Mystery Castle: A Young Girl Rules Over the Strange Secrets of a Fairy Tale Dream House in the Arizona Desert.’ If you want to see a part of history and also feel like you are stepping straight into a fairy tale, then this castle is definitely worth a visit.

Go Horseback Riding

To really get an authentic Arizona experience, you’re going to want to go horseback riding. Thankfully, Tuscon, Arizona is the perfect spot for this outdoor activity, with several ranches available for tourists to try out their riding skills. Whether you’re a novice or have years of experience in the saddle, taking in the sights of the Sonoran Desert on your noble steed will make you feel like you’re a part of a Western classic. And in case you’re wondering ‘how far is Tucson from Phoenix?’, the trip will take you about 1 hour and 41 minutes.

See the Phoenix Bat Cave

Not to be confused with Bruce Wayne’s infamous Bat Cave, this ‘cave’ is technically not a cave at all, but an abandoned storm drain. However, you won’t be disappointed when you visit, as this is the spot where, every year, 10,000 to 20,000 Mexican Free-Tailed Bats emerge from the cave to continue their migration south to Mexico. The bats gather in the storm drain to catch up on their beauty sleep, but if you’re about just before dusk, you will witness a swarm of bats unleashed from their hiding spot as they take to the sky. Obviously, if you are not overly fond of these winged creatures, then you may want to avoid this sighting, as the bats certainly won’t be afraid of you and have little concept of personal space. However, tourists are encouraged to view this event, as long as they stay quiet and do not disturb the bats.

Go to the Phoenix Zoo

First opened in 1962, this zoo is the largest privately-owned non-profit zoo in the US. The zoo is home to 3,000 animals and also has some great walking trails. Meet the animals, which include lions, wild dogs, Asian elephants, flamingos, lemurs, jaguars, ostriches and so much more. Learn more about the zoo’s conservation efforts and their green initiatives, like the Phoenix Zoo’s Green Team, a group of employees and volunteers who research and recommend more eco-friendly practices. You can also visit the zoo at night when you go to the Night Camp. Enjoy a tour by flashlight and camp in one of the several camping options.

Don’t let the rather intimidating name put you off; Death Valley is a must-see. Located in Eastern California, this valley received its famous moniker during the 1800s, when prospectors tried to cross it to reach the goldfields. Death Valley is one of the hottest places in the world, still, this valley has got some incredible views and amazing experiences. So if you’re an explorer looking for your next big adventure, read on for some ideas on what to do in Death Valley.

Dante’s View

This stunning view is one that will stay with you forever and has to be seen to be believed. Located more than 3,000 feet above Badwater, Dante’s View offers an incredible panoramic view of the valley below. It is about 45 minutes away from Furnace Creek and will give you the best views as you stand atop the Black Mountains. Just note that, because of its height, the air is noticeably cooler than it is below, so if you do venture up here, make sure to pack some warm clothes. If you want to get the best out of your experience, make sure that you witness the sunset at Dante’s View; it will blow you away.

Golden Canyon

Golden Canyon offers one of the best hiking trails in the Death Valley National Park and lives up to its name with its golden-colored hills. If any of the sites happen to look familiar, it may be because some of the scenes from the original Star Wars movies were filmed right here! That’s right, the amazing canyons, boulders, and desert terrain are sure to make you feel like you’re on another planet.

Zabriskie Point

A short drive from Furnace Creek, Zabriskie Point is an easy stop en route to Dante’s View. And just as Dante’s View is perfect for sunsets, you can witness a remarkable sunrise at Zabriskie Point in the early morning. Due to the Death Valley weather, Zabriskie Point has almost no vegetation but makes up for it with great hike trails.

Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes

The 100-foot/30-meter-high Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes need to be on your radar if you want to visit the best-known dunes. Despite the highest dune only rising to about 100 feet, the dunes cover a substantial area and includes three types of dunes: crescent, linear, and star-shaped. You can also see the Mesquite trees, a drought-tolerant plant.

Stargazing

Whether you love astronomy or simply want to experience the magic of the night sky, then you need to stargaze in Death Valley. Death Valley manages to have some of the darkest skies even though it’s just two hours away from Las Vegas. The Mojave Desert is one of the best places to see the stars, witness a lunar eclipse or meteor shower, and the Death Valley National Park hosts an annual Winter Star Party for astronomers, where they can gaze at the stars through telescopes on the resort golf course.

Camping

If you’re looking to go on a camping trip, then Death Valley has some great campgrounds to pick from. Death Valley camping has proven to be extremely popular, with areas including:

  • Wildrose Campground: This all-season campground is located on the western edges of Death Valley National Park. Death Valley weather in this canyon can be windy, so bring suitable clothes. An ideal spot for RVs, Wildrose stays relatively cool, so it’s a popular spot for campers in the summer months.
  • Furnace Creek Campground: Furnace Creek is in a central location in Death Valley. This campground has 136 campsites with drinking water, picnic tables, and flush toilets, and each campsite has either a campfire ring or a grill.
  • Sunset Campground: This campground one of the least expensive campgrounds in Death Valley, mainly because it is more suited to motorhomes than tents, due to the gravel.

Saline Valley Warm Springs

The Saline Valley is known for its abandoned mines and famous springs. There are three hot spring areas: Lower Springs, Middle Springs and Upper Springs. You can visit Saline Valley’s three springs via a road known as the Warm Springs Road or Painted Rock Road. The beautiful springs are scattered across a 3-mile-long dirt road and first achieved popularity in the 1960’s.

Planning a romantic getaway, a relaxing beach vacation, or a nature-filled adventure? Look no further than beautiful Hawaii. The Hawaiian Islands are rich with activities to choose from, no matter what kind of trip you’re looking for. Each of the main six islands has its own vibe and exciting adventures to take part in, and of course, all of the islets and atolls are bursting with character as well. With so much to experience, you certainly won’t be bored.

Snorkeling

A list of Hawaiian activities would not be complete without including snorkeling at the top. Many consider it to be the number one, must-do activity when visiting Hawaii since there’s such a beautiful marine life to see and explore. If you’re a nature lover, seeing all the different tropical fish, sea turtles, and coral reef formations in their natural habitat is an experience that is unlike any other.

Doing a bit of research before you book your trip can give you a chance to travel to Hawaii and snorkel during the humpback whale migration into warm, Hawaiian waters. There’s also a chance you could see dolphins along the surface of the water, depending on the time of year you visit. The best way to make the most out of snorkeling is to book a snorkeling tour. You’re taken onto a snorkeling boat with a professional tour guide who offers information about marine life and snorkeling guidance, tips and instruction. Each Hawaiian island offers several different tour companies, so regardless of which island you visit, you will have the opportunity to snorkel.

Whale watching

As previously mentioned above, if you’re in Hawaii at the right time of year, you could be a witness to the annual North Pacific humpback whale migration. Every year from November to May, humpback whales make the trip from the colder waters into the warm, Hawaiian waters. During the peak from January to March, it’s more than likely you’ll be able to see these 40-ton mammals swimming through the Hawaiian islands. The best island to visit for whale watching is Maui, so be sure to book a whale watching tour while you’re there.

Beach hopping

Whether you’re on a romantic Hawaiian vacation or are with friends or family, beach hopping is one of the most popular activities on the islands. It’s also most likely one of the main reasons you’re visiting Hawaii in the first place. After all, who doesn’t imagine the white beaches and aqua blue waters when they think of the Aloha state?

Doing your research ahead of time is the best way to find the beaches that suit your vacation style. If you’re simply looking to relax and soak up as much sun as possible, a calmer, quieter beach is probably what you’re looking for. If you want to surf or take part in other water activities in between lazy beach naps, some beaches have more adult adventures. Regardless of what you’re looking for, there are several beaches you can check out and enjoy. The best way to get from one beach to another is to look up driving in Hawaii and the best places to rent a car.

Sightseeing

Taking in all the sights Hawaii has to offer can be enough activity to fill up your entire trip. Dramatic landscapes, stunning ocean scenes, and natural wonders are everywhere you look, and each Hawaiian island offers something unique for visitors. Taking a sightseeing tour is a good way to get around, but the best way to sightsee is to rent a car and go exploring. When driving in Hawaii, it’s important to remember that the scenes are gorgeous, but they can be distracting. Do your best to keep pace with other traffic and avoid slowing down to take pictures or get a better look at the landscapes. You can always pull off the road and take a few minutes to grab that perfect photo.

Sightseeing in Hawaii gives you an excellent opportunity to avoid popular tourist areas and explore local gems instead. Try the local foods, find unique souvenirs, and best of all, stumble upon areas that aren’t busy with tourists. You can find waterfalls and natural pools to swim in, black sand beaches to squish your toes into, and volcanoes to hike around. Hawaii is a tropical paradise like no other.

Engage with the culture

There are also plenty of cultural attractions to visit and learn about; this is because of Hawaii’s rich cultural history and the blend of many indigenous Polynesian cultures. What’s more, many sacred pieces of culture are celebrated, including their history, ecology, healing practices, and sense of family.

Visitors to Hawaii are expected to honor and respect the culture. You can participate in cultural activities like attending a luau, watching a hula performance, checking out local agricultural sights and farms, and learning more about their cultural rites.

Winter brings with it Christmas and New Years, but after that, all we are left with is cold, bleak winter blues, and for all you students, exams! Don’t let the winter weather get you down, however, as Spring is on the horizon, and we have listed the best places to travel in March that will help you get your mojo back. Let’s take a look at just what you can do during Spring Break 2020 and where you can go.

What is Spring Break?

Spring Break is the vacation period that takes place in early spring for university and college students. The holiday was first introduced in 1930 and has since earned itself a reputation for being an opportunity for students to spend the entire time partying and drinking in popular destinations. It attracts thousands of young students who are wanting to let their hair down and enjoy some fun in the sun.

When is Spring Break 2020?

Spring Break takes place between February and mid-April, but it often depends on the college that you are attending, so be sure to double-check before you book anything! Nevertheless, the long span of Spring Break usually means that the peak period is March. So, if you are looking for some of the best places to travel in March, then you are in the right place as we can help you decide what to do once the winter disappears.

Miami Beach, Florida

Of course, we have to start with one of the most famous destinations for Spring Break. Miami Beach, Florida, is known for its eccentric all-night parties, and so is often the go-to choice for many young travelers, but there is so much more to Miami than just a party destination with stunning beaches.

What to Do?
Yes, partying is a rite of passage of any Spring Break, but nothing is stopping you from exploring more of the beautiful destination. Save the partying for the weekend (there are plenty of festivals to choose from), and spend the weekdays exploring Miami. Different restaurants and cafes are abundant, as well as a wide variety of activities, from museums, parks, and attractions (some of which are free to enter). Take a stroll through Miami’s number one attraction, Vizcaya Museum, and Gardens, which provides breathtaking views of the estate surrounded by ten acres of gardens or explore the Jungle Island and see the tropical side of Miami.

White Mountains, New Hampshire

When you have had enough of being cooped up over winter and spending too much time at your desk, head to this beautiful destination in New Hampshire. It will provide you with a very different Spring Break, but it allows you to explore the outdoors like never before.

What to Do?
You won’t find sandy beaches and the beaming sun here, but you will find stunning waterfalls and even a bit of snow. Take the opportunity to get your hiking boots out and explore one of the many trails in the mountains. If you don’t want to hike, you could give mountain biking a chance or learn how to ski; you could even try a spot of bird watching if you fancied it. A destination such as this enables you to take a breather from everyday life.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

We’re back to the beaches! If you want to experience loud clubs with cheap drinks and beautiful beaches, Myrtle Beach in South Carolina offers both. The quieter beaches in South Carolina are an attractive feature for many that allow you to swim, chill, and even take part in water sports; however, there is lots more to explore here.

What to Do?
Check out Mt. Atlanticus miniature golf or the Ripley’s Aquarium Myrtle Beach for when you need a break from all that sun, sea, and sand. Or discover the wonders of the amusement parks during the day.

New Orleans, Louisiana

The great thing about New Orleans is that there is something for everyone. When you are traveling with your friends, this is difficult to achieve, but in New Orleans it is possible.

What to Do?
The historical city is bursting with stunning architecture that speaks volumes about the culture. If you want to learn more, there are plenty of tours that will take you around the wonderful city, including ghost tours. For foodies, there are plenty of different restaurants that will make your taste buds very happy. This is all made even better by the fact that they also hold festivals so you can party the night away after a day of exploring the city.

On 8th March, every year around the world, International Women’s Day brings about a reason to celebrate the achievements made by women throughout history and the present day. From social achievements to cultural and political accomplishments, millions of people globally support the day and try to raise more awareness about women’s rights. To show their support, many people actively campaign, volunteer, or donate, but there are many other ways you can support at any time of the year and even learn a little bit of history at the same time. One such way you can show your support for International Women’s Day is by educating yourself and learning about some of the most famous monuments and statues of women across the US. Let’s explore this in more detail.

1. Boston Women’s Heritage Trail – Boston, Massachusetts

Rent a car in Massachusetts
The first on this list is the Boston Women’s Heritage Trail because there is so much to see here! It is unique in that it is not just one statue, but instead offers you are an assortment of walking tours that take you around Boston. You will explore several neighborhoods on the trails, including Back Bay and Beacon Hill. If you were to take the Beacon Hill tour, some of the female statues that you will come across during your tour include:

  • Rose Nichols – one of the first well-known architects of her time
  • Elizabeth Peabody’s Kindergarten – the founder of the kindergarten movement
  • Annie Adams Fields – known for her support of women writers

This tour explores so much more (there are 18 different monuments to see in total) and gives you an insight into the lives these women-led. The self-guided tour should take you around an hour and a half to complete.

2. The Maria Mitchell Association – Nantucket, Massachusetts

Rent a car in Massachusetts
Maria Mitchell first found an interest in astronomy thanks to her father, and she went on to become the first professional woman astronomer in the USA. Her love for astronomy resulted in her educating herself as well as researching the skies at the New York women’s college. Her dedicated work went on to inspire students and her own family, who set up the Maria Mitchell Association, which allows people of all ages to come and learn more about astronomy. The non-profit museum has expanded over the years and welcomes people to learn more about Maria Mitchell as well as the research she completed.

3. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum – Santa Fe, New Mexico

Rent a car in New Mexico
The American born artist, Georgia O’Keefe, was known for her independent spirit and her skilled artwork that saw her become a pioneer of her time, or as many know her, as the “mother” of American Modernism. This is because she didn’t paint what she saw; instead, she painted how the landscape before her made her feel. The unique way she painted resulted in her quickly becoming a female role model for many and developing a reputation that still stands today, for she changed modern art forever. Eleven years after the death of the renowned artist, the Georgia O’Keefe Museum was first opened in 1997 and now offers nine different themed galleries of her work. A trip to the museum will provide more than just an opportunity to admire her completed work, but also how it was carried out. You can learn about the creative processes she took to achieve her work.

4. Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site – Hyde Park, New York

Rent a car in New York
Eleanor Roosevelt served as the First Lady of the United States between 1933 and 1945 beside her husband, President Franklin D. Roosevelt. She is the only First Lady to serve four terms in office, so if you want to show your support for women, then there couldn’t be a better place than the Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site. It will give you a deeper understanding of both the private and public life she led while at Val-Kill, which is the only National Historic Site that is dedicated to a first lady. There is a permanent exhibit devoted to her, but there are several different events that are held throughout the year as well.

5. National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame – Fort Worth, Texas

Rent a car in Texas
When you want to broaden your knowledge of the historic monuments dedicated to women, then this is the place to go. This museum is dedicated to honoring the women of the American West. Filled with exhibits and a rare collection of photos, not to mention a research library, which allows you to learn even more about these amazing women, it has documented some of the most famous women, such as Sacagawea, Sandra Day O’Connor, and Enid Justin.

Traveling with your infant or toddler can be a nerve-wracking experience if you aren’t sure that you have the right car seat. With so many on the market, all with a myriad of different features and designs to choose from, it can get confusing, especially when it comes to classifications for different ages.

Buying the best car seat is an important decision to make, so knowing the ins and outs of all the features offered by different brands can help you make the best decision for your child to keep them safe in the car.

How to Choose the Best Car Seat

Before you start shopping for an infant car seat, you need to know what laws apply in your state so that you’re fully compliant. Each state sets its own laws, which can make it more complicated if you’re a family that travels between states often, or if you move to another state. Even while on vacation, your car seat still needs to meet the requirements of the state you’re in at the time. They tend to change occasionally as well, so doing your research and staying on top of the requirements is a good idea before you purchase one.

One of the most important aspects to remember is to follow the guidelines and instructions on the car seat that you buy. It’s common for states to specify that children must be seated in a properly used car seat, meaning the car seat must be installed and used exactly as the instructions state. Failure to do so means you’re using the car seat illegally, and in the event of an accident, your child is at a higher risk of injury.

By understanding both the laws in your state and how to install and use your new car seat properly, you can ensure your child is safe and that you’re following the legal requirements.

Car Seat Features

With the new year comes new innovation and safety features. If you have just had a baby or are having a baby in 2020, choosing the right travel car seat means considering the different features each one has to offer.

Here is a list of the best car seat features to help you get started on your search for the right one.

Mesh seats and ventilation panels

Having an overheating baby while you’re driving is something you want to avoid. Choosing a car seat with airy mesh seats can help with the flow of air, so the actual seat doesn’t get too toasty for your toddler. Seat ventilation panels at the bottom and sides of the seat can also help improve airflow during warmer months so the seat stays cool and your baby stays comfortable.

True lock™ base

Car seat brand Nuna has nailed the base installation technology with its trademarked True lock™ base installation system. Installing your toddler car seat is easier and quicker than ever, so if you’ve ever struggled to install a car seat, this is the solution for you.

Nuna car seats include a steel stability leg that helps keep the base securely in place so there are no wobbles at all. The car seat also includes green indicators that tell you when the stability leg is secured and the connectors are all fixed. If all the indicators are green, it means your car seat is firmly connected to the base and everything is ready to be used.

All-in-one

An all-in-one car seat takes care of it all. Car seats are not cheap, and as your child grows, you need to get a car seat that properly fits them. This could mean shelling out roughly $300 every year or two for newer, bigger car seats or booster seats. With an all-in-one car seat, you don’t need to worry about that. While the initial price may be higher than a regular car seat, an all-in-one can go from an infant car seat to a booster seat and can change from rear-facing to forward-facing to a high-back booster. As your child’s needs change, your car seat changes with them.

Side impact protection

No parent wants to think about his or her infant or toddler in a car accident, but being prepared for anything can ensure your child’s safety. Having side impact protection built into your car seat can make all the difference in the event of a car crash. It can help absorb the force in a side impact by deforming, much like a car’s crumple zone. Cushion inserts, soft foam, and extra protection made of shock-absorbing material create a buffer zone. Most importantly, car seats with side impact protection not only meet U.S. safety regulations but also exceed them, so you know your baby or toddler is protected quite well.

Unless you’re an avid traveler always scouting for the best deals and vacations year-round, you may not realize that February is one of the best months to travel the world. While many may think February is the ideal time to escape to a sunny destination, this isn’t the case. There are many beautiful places to see – especially for big celebrations like Valentine’s Day 2020 and Mardi Gras 2020.

Have you got the travel bug but are wondering where to vacation in February? We’ve got you covered. Here are some of the best destinations for you to explore.

New Orleans, Louisiana

It’s hard to beat a New Orleans trip in February. This party city offers amazing food, entertainment, and beautiful weather this time of year, but of course, it’s all about Mardi Gras 2020.

Known as “the greatest free show on Earth,” Mardi Gras is a city-wide celebration that draws hundreds of thousands of people to join in the festivities. Parades, music, good eats, and lots of other shows and entertainment are abundant, especially during the weekend before Fat Tuesday.

If the idea of a massive crowd turns you off, you can still have a great trip to New Orleans since there’s so much to do. With so much world-class food and drink in bars and restaurants along Frenchman Street, foodies would have a hard time saying goodbye to this city. Plus, there’s plenty of live jazz to be found around every corner.

Maui, Hawaii

It’s always tempting to book a beach vacation during the winter, but a trip to Hawaii in February is the best time to visit. Since holiday travel season has just ended, airfare to Hawaii is at its cheapest and hotel rates have dropped significantly as well. If you’ve always wanted to come to Hawaii but were limited by your budget, jumping on a trip in February can make your dream a reality.

Whether you’re booking a romantic getaway in time for Valentine’s Day 2020 or want to soak up some sun and gorgeous landscape views, Maui is the place to be. If you’re a nature lover, the middle of February is Maui’s annual Whale Festival. It coincides with the peak of humpback whale-watching season, so you can get out and catch a glimpse of the whales migrating to warmer waters.

Willemstad, Curaçao

Another affordable beach destination is Curaçao, which some might call a hidden gem as it’s often overlooked by travelers who choose other popular Caribbean destinations. Curaçao boasts some of the best beaches in the Caribbean, however, so it certainly stacks up to the other beach destinations.

The capital city of Willemstad is full of winding streets that offer tons of authentic restaurants and bars. The streets are full of Dutch colonial buildings, all painted with lovely bright colors that are picture-perfect against the blue skies. There’s a charming floating market that both locals and visitors love that’s well worth browsing.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Who can resist the biggest celebration of them all: Carnival. It’s typical for more than one million people to travel to Rio for the parades, street parties, music, and food, so you know there will be plenty of excitement and fun to be had. This year, Carnival runs from February 21 to 29 and the entirety of the celebrations will feature samba competitions and parties. The biggest and best parades happen at the Sambadrome, but no matter what part of the city you’re in, you’re bound to find live music and dancing.

Beijing, China

Celebrating the Lunar New Year in China’s capital city is one of the best places to do so. The Year of the Rat kicks off on January 25, but the celebrations last until February 8th when the Lantern Festival takes place. There are world-class fireworks displays, food, entertainment, and even ice sculptures that are lit up all different colors. Since the entire country has a full week off as part of the celebration, you are guaranteed that Beijing comes to life during this time. Plus, if you’re traveling in February to catch the end of the Lunar New Year party, why not stay a little longer and enjoy the city after it calms down from all the celebrations?

Ibiza, Spain

Although most people usually think Ibiza is a summer destination, February is one of the best times to experience the city the way the locals know it best. There’s an obvious laid-back vibe in February that mass amounts of tourists stir up in the summer months. Beach bars and pavement cafes are much calmer and there are plenty of deals to be had for tapas and drinks. Without the large crowds, shop and restaurant owners try and entice visitors with bargains, and one night a week even offer meals for half price.

Ibiza in February isn’t completely calm, however, as smaller towns tend to get into the Carnival celebrations early. Many clubs throw after parties, so if you’re looking for that typical nightlife scene in Ibiza, you can still find it.

Bad driving habits are prematurely destroying your vehicle, but you can stop it by changing your behavior on the road. Knowing how to drive properly and stopping these eight bad driving (and parking) habits can better protect your vehicle and get more years out of it.

1. Not Avoiding Potholes

Potholes are a fact of life, and avoiding them is good for your car. Think of them as the reverse speed bump. Not avoiding them can result in damage to your vehicle, so eyes on the road and avoid as many potholes as you can before you end up spending lots of money on repairs or a new vehicle.

2. Driving Too Fast Over Speed Bumps

One of the biggest safe driving tips you can adopt is to drive slowly over speed bumps. They are designed to damage your car if you take them too quickly, but their purpose serves the community. By properly slowing down (even for a small one with no one around), you can protect your vehicle, save yourself a ticket, and potentially avoid hitting someone or something in a pedestrian-friendly zone.

3. Not Using Your Parking Brake

The only part of your vehicle that is specifically designed to keep your car parked is your parking brake. Not using it is common and far too many of us do this because our cars stay in park when we put it into that gear, right? In reality not using your parking brake is putting a lot of stress and wear on your vehicle, and to keep it in great condition for as long as possible you are going to want to use your parking break in every condition, not just on hills or bumpy roads.

4. Not Maintaining Your Vehicle When the Lights Go On

If you see a maintenance light go on, get your car checked as soon as possible. Changing the oil is a fast and easy thing to do and it prolongs the life of your vehicle. All issues that your car warns you of are easier and faster to fix right from the start than if you allow them to fester.

5. Driving Until Your Gas Tank is Almost Empty

Yes, driving tank indicators are wrong. They’re very wrong. You might have 50 miles left in your gas tank before you hit empty, but that isn’t the only reason to have gas in your car. Gas also acts as a coolant, so when your gas tank runs empty, it can lead your car to overheat or even malfunction — driving too often on empty means that your catalytic converter, fuel system, and the fuel pump could all become damaged. The danger is even greater if you run on empty.

6. Immediately Changing from Reverse to Drive

You need to come to a complete stop before you change gears from reverse into drive and vice versa. This applies to manual vehicles and automatic vehicles. Not taking this extra step can damage your transmission, and in some cases, even beyond repair. If you have done this in the past, get it taken in for a checkup and transmission service ASAP and start taking those few extra seconds to come to a complete stop.

7. Not Checking Your Vehicle Regularly

Small issues are easy to fix and easy on the budget. We’ve already gone over how you need to take your vehicle in once an indicator light turns on, but in this case, you are going to want to check the car for yourself. Check the air pressure in your tires, check the body of your vehicle, check to make sure all the lights work – these issues can become worse over time if you don’t fix them (rust, for example), and in other cases, adopting this new habit is key to saving yourself a ticket.

8. Not Keeping Your Vehicle Clean in Winter

You don’t need to wash your car every morning and night during winter, but you do need to keep it as free of slush buildup. Consider hosing it down every once in a while or getting if buffed before and during the winters – road salt can be very damaging to your vehicle and lead to rust buildup over time.

A small change you can make right now is to simply take the windshield scraper and brush you keep in your car and knocking off any of that salt-filled slush buildup from behind your wheels.

Your vehicle can last you over a decade and more if taken care of properly, especially if it doesn’t have too many advanced safety issues or computer systems in place. Safe driving, good habits and keeping your car clean are all great methods in keeping your vehicle free from damage.

Four airports serve the Orlando area. Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), Orlando Melbourne International Airport (MLB), Orlando International Airport (MCO), and Daytona Beach International Airport (DAB). Technically there are five, but as Orlando Executive Airport only serves private-plane passengers, it won’t apply to many travelers to and from the area.

Of these four options, however, you will likely have two options in total. You will either be looking at flying to and from Orlando International Airport (MCO) or Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB).

If you’re looking to travel for work, to visit the theme parks, or to enjoy the nightlife, knowing where to touch down is important. You will want to suit your needs and budget, which is why we have put together this guide to help you learn the pros and cons of each Orlando airport.

Orlando International Airport (MCO)

The closest airport to Disney World and the closest airport to Universal Studios is Orlando International Airport. It is only 9 miles away from Orlando itself, 17 miles from Universal Studios, and 18.8 miles away from the Walt Disney World Resort.

It sees about 35 million passengers a year and is a massive 23 square miles in size. As the third-largest airport in the United States of America, it offers great options and facilities and even has the capabilities to accommodate Class 6 aircraft, the largest planes flying into the sky today.

Orlando has one main terminal building and satellite or airside terminals where flights leave from. Each airside terminal has all the features you could want, from free high-speed Wi-Fi to restaurants, bars, and shops.

It has recently undergone a massive $946m refurbishment as well, improving its systems and amenities for travelers everywhere.

From here, you can easily get into Orlando by renting a vehicle or using public transport. If you plan on staying off-site out of the resorts then renting a car with us is going to be your best bet, as it gives you the freedom to get where you are going on your own time.

Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB)

Orlando Sanford International claims it is the most user-friendly airport in Central Florida, which considering the massive maze of terminals that MCO features could be very well true, especially for first-time travelers.

SFB is further away. It is, on average, 27.9 miles outside of Orlando’s city center and it is 36 miles away from Disney World and Universal Studios. That being said, it is more closely located to the beautiful landscapes of Florida, so if you aren’t in town to visit the theme parks and instead to enjoy Florida’s natural beauty and a relaxing trip away then SFB is certainly the way to go.

SFB is ideal if you intend to travel up towards one of the world’s most famous beaches, Daytona Beach, but you will also be within an hour’s drive of New Smyrna Beach, Port Canaveral, and Cocoa Beach.

SFB prides itself on being stress-free, offering convenient parking, short walking distances and good prices for its amenities and flights. It’s a great option for beach-goers and those who don’t mind the long drive.

Which Airport is Right for You?

If you are heading into Orlando to visit either Disney World or Universal Studios, then Orlando International Airport is going to be the most convenient option. From Universal Studios, Orlando MCO is only 17 miles away, whereas Sanford International Airport is more than twice the distance at 36 miles away. This will be the best option regardless of whether you are flying from an international destination or domestically.

If you are planning on traveling throughout Florida, then the cheaper prices at SFB will be attractive to you. Similarly, many people find the layout of MCO very confusing and sometimes difficult, and if a simple, streamlined experience is more suited to you, then SFB should be your top choice.

In the end, it will depend on whether the price is right. At their distance from Orlando, both options are easy to get to, whether you are taking public transport, taking a taxi, or renting a vehicle. You will naturally have more options available to you at MCO than you would at SFB, as it is the larger of the two airports, but you will have an enjoyable time at either airport.

Choose depending on the flight cost and the distance to your accommodation or your destination. Suiting your needs is going to be the most important component.

If you’re like most sports-loving Americans, you’ve probably seen or been to one or two tailgate parties in your life. Starting in fall for football season, celebrating before the game by eating, drinking, and talking about the best and worst plays has become something of a tradition for many.

If you want to be part of the scene and attend a tailgate party, it’s good to know which vehicles are perfect for tailgating.

What Is a Tailgate Party?

A tailgate party can be held for almost any social event, although they’re most common before sporting events like football or baseball games. Primarily an American event, tailgating involves grilling food and having drinks in parking lots at the arenas and stadiums before the game starts. Not everyone is required to have their own car, but people who attend park their vehicles and open up their trunks where they play music from a stereo and keep their food and drinks in coolers for easy access.

It’s custom to bring your own food, barbeque, and beverages to share with the rest of the tailgate party, so everyone can sample all the food and drinks that are brought. Usually, the food at a tailgate party includes hot dogs, hamburgers, bratwurst, and salads like potato salad or coleslaw.

To keep it exciting, some tailgate parties include lawn games like cornhole, ladder golf, horseshoes, and sholf (a cross between shuffleboard and golf). These games are popular when tailgating because they’re simple and easy to set up. When alcohol gets involved, beer pong and flip cup are also played.

Tailgate parties are usually non-commercial events, so you won’t find any merchandise or anything similar being sold while fans are attending. Vendors who come to tailgate parties to sell merchandise are not looked upon highly, so although it seems like a good opportunity to find some customers, it’s frowned upon.

Tailgate parties initially were just for partying before a football game, but they have now gained in popularity and spread to other sporting events like basketball, hockey, baseball, and occasional concerts, barbeques, and even weddings. At the more sophisticated tailgate setups, you may even see a television set hooked up to an electric generator so attendees can watch other sports while they’re tailgating.

Which Vehicles Are Best for Tailgating?

Any vehicle works in a pinch, but having the right vehicle for a tailgate party can help make it easier to set up and manage. The best tailgating vehicles ideally have an actual tailgate, which you can use as a seat, buffet, food prep station, and a bar. You probably also want a good sound system and lots of storage for your coolers, grill, tables or folding chairs.

Chrysler Voyager – Three rows of seats mean there’s lots of space for partygoers. Plus, if you fold down the last row of seats, you’ve got plenty of storage space for all your equipment and supplies. If you equip your Voyager with hands-free power sliding doors and liftgate, it’ll make loading and unloading effortless.

Ford F-150 – Pickup trucks make great tailgating vehicles, as long as they have the right features. The F-150 has lots of storage space and an optional audio system with ten speakers and a subwoofer that you can sync up to your phone. There’s also a hidden tailgate step to help you load up the bed of the truck. With the SuperCab and SuperCrew configurations, you can take up to six people to the tailgate party.

Ford Flex – This wagon is quite roomy, offering enough space for up to seven partygoers. The back row of seats can fold down for extra storage space, and once everything has been unloaded, you can lift the seats back up and flip them around, so they face backward. It’s perfect for extra seating while still being part of the party. You can also get the optional second row refrigerated console to keep your beverages cool.

Subaru Forester – For those who don’t have too much equipment to lug to the tailgate party, this SUV has the perfect amount of space for both tailgaters and tailgate supplies. Transport up to five people, or fold down the back seats to increase your cargo space from 34 cubic feet to 74 cubic feet. If you want to blast some tunes at the party, the optional eight-speaker audio system will do the trick. Plus, there’s an option to equip a 110-volt power outlet to plug devices into, like if you wanted to charge your phone or plug in a television to watch other sports while you tailgate.