California here we come.....!
We are off! Well first stop Holiday Inn Gatwick Worth. I detailed what a great deal we got with this room in my Countdown to Cali blog post. We have a family room for £156 which includes a discount and 15 days parking. We are planning to have a really chilled night and lay in the next day and be nice and relaxed and stress free for check in. Fingers crossed it all goes to plan!
I have spent quite a lot of time this week printing everything we need, even if I have digital tickets/passes/bookings as technology does sometimes fail and I like to be covered for these situations. So I have a folder with pocket wallets in it , that I got from Tesco, and I have filed everything in order that we will/might need them - so ESTA's first, car rental, hotels in order that we are staying at them, and behind each of these there are bookings/tickets for those areas. There is a separate slot at the front and in here I have stored our Barclays Travel Insurance booklet and the booking confirmation for the Premier Inn at Gatwick. Our passports, tickets and international driving licences are in my travel document wallet, which I got from Amazon a few years ago, and is really handy and I use it every time we go away.
Also a while ago we got a personalised notebook to make notes of places we wanted to go, things to see, restaurants to eat in etc!
I did a few last minute orders from www.amazon.co.uk (thank heaven for Prime!) as I realised I had forgotten a few bits. I got a travel tri-pod for our new camera, a Nikon D3400, which I cannot wait to use on our trip, the tripod was £13.79. Also I ordered smaller sizes of my TIGI Oatmeal and Honey shampoo 300ml and conditioner £250ml £13.25 for both together, the bottles I have are huge and still have quite a lot in them so will be bulky and heavy in my case. Another item I got was Hawaiin Tropic 180ml SPF50 Satin Protection Sun Lotion £7.23 because I just love the smell, it is just holiday in a bottle!
The last thing in my order was Liquid Oxygen Drops 30ml £22.97. This was recommended to my by my fabulous friend Sarah B. She bought these on a recent flight to Florida and they help to combat Jet Lag so I thought I would give them a go. Will report back on these.
The postman kindly delivered some insoles I ordered, as I really hate the pain that comes with wearing heels! especially when on holiday. I did a lot of research on different brands and almost got the Scholl Gel Active Women's Extreme Heels Insoles. These had really good reviews but at £14.99 for one pair that can only be used in one pair of shoes it put me off a bit. So after some more research I came across www.vivianlou.co.uk. There seems to be quite a lot of scientific research behind these and they have good reviews, and while pricey (£29 for one pair) they do work out cheaper per pair if you buy more than one, and you get 15% off your first order so because I bought 4 pairs I paid £54.15 and while you can again only use each pair in one pair of shoes I have saved a few pounds on these rather than the Scholl insoles. I tested a pair out when I went for dinner on Thursday and they
A couple of other last minute bits I almost forgot were a lovely beach bag for Gracie from www.newlook.co.uk and a few bra's for me. For us bustier girls its not always possible to go braless, but on the other hand its not always comfortable wearing an underwire bra especially when it is really hot! So I bought a few bralet's from New Look they look really pretty and are comfy too (and there's a sale on, I'm a sucker for a sale!!!).
Ok back to travel! With our Barclays Travel Plus Insurance we get 6 airport lounge entries per year, so we have planned to use 3 of them for this trip so that we can chill out get some food and stay away from the shops and madness of duty free and the terminal in general. It is always so busy, not easy to find somewhere to eat that suits everyone and actually has a table free. And lets face it free food and drinks (not including alcohol) is pretty appealing!
When I say stay away from the shops and duty free - I'm not going to stay out all together, I am after all a savvy shopper who likes a discount. So I am hoping to get some perfume as I only have 2 bottles that are nearly full, all the rest just have a small amount in them. I really love Jo Malone Lime, Basil & Madarin scent it is my favourite and Tropical Cheramoya so one of these is a potential purchase!
One thing I will definitely be buying is a very large bag of crisps to celebrate going 10 weeks and 2 days without any! These will be consumed on the plane whilst watching lots of movies.
We are all so excited for this holiday, and it is finally here.
See you on the other side!