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Avoid conversations by wearing headphones - Airplane tip

Sick of hearing about a stranger's dysfunctional family or odd medical conditions? Avoid conversations all-together by doing a simple thing: wear headphones.

This works best if you also avoid eye contact (and it may be necessary to pretend that you don't hear you fellow passengers the first time they speak). Pull your headphones off when speaking to them and then put the headphones back on when the chit-chat is over.

In reality, it doesn't even matter if the headphones are plugged in. The other passengers just need to believe they are.

Sail from local ports to save on airfare - Cruise tip

As a resident of Richmond, Virginia, I discovered that cruise ships leave from Norfolk after being refurbished at a shipyard in Newport News. When they leave port, the rooms have been thoroughly cleaned and upgraded. The ships are like new again.

The best part is that you can hop on board and cruise down to the Caribbean. The trips usually come back to Norfolk, so you can save on airfare both ways. For each person that cruises, you can save as much as $200 on airfare.

Roll the dice, make decisions - Traveling with kids tip

When traveling with the family, there will inevitably be disputes over things like the television station, choice of restaurants, and who gets the pull-out couch.

Bring a pair of dice along, and let everybody roll the dice to make decisions. Whoever gets the highest roll wins.

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