You need THIS app for international travel!

Don’t leave home without downloading this app… 


One of the main bottlenecks when coming back into the United States after international travel is getting through Customs.  Filling out forms on the plane, waiting in long lines, and answering a bunch of questions about your recent trip is tiring.  What if I told you there is now a way to do most of this through an app?  Would you download a simple app to your phone if it could save you time getting through customs?  I know I would. 


The Mobile Passport Control app is an app that can do just that, help you get through the whole process more quickly.  All you have to do is download the app to one of your smart devices, i.e. tablet or phone.  Once you download the app, create a profile with your passport information including name, gender, date of birth, and country of citizenship.  Once you have this set-up, you are ready to use the app on your next international trip. 



How do you use the app when coming back into the US?  It is actually quite simple.  Select “New Trip” in the app.  In your new trip you will put in your arrival airport, airline, take a self-photo, and answer the series of CBP inspection related questions.  Note: only select airports are participating currently visit for the full list of airports.  Once you have Wi-Fi or data available to you, submit your information and you will receive a receipt with your encrypted quick response code or QR code. 


When you get to the CBP officer they will scan the code and verify your information. 

No more filling out forms on the plane and answering a ton of questions with the CBP officer.  You are doing all the administrative tasks in advanced which helps reduce passport control inspection time and, therefore, overall wait times.  You will still have to go through the line, no skipping the line, but this will dramatically decrease the amount of time you are waiting. 


If you are traveling with your family, great news!  You can add up to 12 profiles for a single household and submit only once for those 12 people.  This helps out families who are traveling with little kids because you can easily do this on the plane, submit once you get off the plane, and get through CPB quickly. 


Currently this app is only available to United States and Canadian citizens.  Eligible travelers can download the Mobile Passport app from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.  After all, Life is Better Traveling when making it easier for you. 

Fill out the form below to get started planning your next European Vacation.  Looking for a motor coach tour, self-drive, or private tour, we can easily put together the perfect European vacation for you and your family’s needs. 

When you book your vacation with a member of the Life is Better Traveling Team, you are supporting local families and business.  Thank you to everyone who has supported us over the past 4 years, we have become an AMAZING travel agency due to your support!


Is convenience always better?

When you travel you always try to make it convenient for yourself.  Some of the things that I have purchased over the years to make travel convenient include a blow up neck pillow, a blow up cushioned seat, smart tablets, versatile clothing, RFID blocking purse, belt with hidden compartment for money and credit cards, foldable shoes, various pieces of luggage and bags, etc.  Some of these items were amazing and others were a complete waste of money.   Now that I have two little kids to travel with, traveling seems like a huge task!  Anything I can do to make it more convenient on myself and my husband, I will pay for it!


If you have or had little ones, you remember how getting through an airport, an amusement park, or even getting on a bus at Disney was a difficult task but the one thing that you bring for convenience is a stroller.  Nowadays, there are some many strollers on the market and when you find that one you like, you take it everywhere with you including anywhere you travel.  The problem with most strollers are that they are beasts!  Even folded over they are bulky and weigh over 20 pounds.  Now, if you have ever been to Disney then you know that the buses to take you to and from your resort are crowded with people, but most of the space taken up is by strollers.  Those people with older children are the envy of the bus, and those of us with our beast of a stroller just give each other the sympathy nod.  Same holds true when you are folding the beast at the end of the runway before getting on a plane. 


Well, lucky for us we are at that stage with our kids where they don’t really need a stroller, but it is still a good idea to bring one along, especially for the toddler who likes to run away from us in the busy airport.  With so many trips coming up this year I didn’t want to buy another stroller, but our umbrella stroller broke on our last trip.  Out to the baby store we went, looking to pick up another umbrella stroller but instead we were intrigued by a new stroller on the market.  Weighing in at 9 pounds and folding up to the size of large book, how could I not resist checking out this stroller. I had a huge smile on face at the thought of how this would make my life so convenient on our upcoming trips!


The lady at the store, Kathy who needs to be mentioned for having such patience, got out the box from the storage area in the back.  Excited to see the product first hand as she had only seen the video of how to use, she came down the aisle with a huge smile on her face.  The box for the stroller was the same size of the box that my laptop computer came in.  All excited, we started to gather a crowd of employees who also wanted to see the world’s smallest folded stroller.  Kathy opens the box that says no assembly required, and takes it out of the bag.  As she says watch this, she tries to open it as she had seen in the video, nothing happens.  She tries again, and nothing.  Another employee takes the stroller and tries to open it, nothing.  At this point, we have about 8 employees and 3 customers all around this book size, folded up stroller and none of us can figure out how to open it.  My excitement for a stroller with such convenience has turned into frustration and concern about whether I would be able to figure out how to fold this stroller quickly.  After losing several employees, the original Kathy, myself, my husband, and two other employees had figured it out after 25 minutes!  Even though we watched the video several times, it took us 25 minutes to figure it out.  After getting it open, I was disappointed by the lack of a sun screen/visor to protect a child and the stability of the stroller.  I also did not like that the seat did not recline for the child.    If you are interested in finding out which stroller I am talking about I have conveniently hyperlinked the video.  You will be impressed, just like I was. Click Here for Video


I am impressed by this stroller company in general.  They have several one touch foldable, light-weight strollers.  We did purchase the stroller called the Qbit and it folds up small enough to go into bag that is provided by the company, and is around 15 pounds.  Both kids have found it very comfortable to be in and me and my husband have found it very easy and convenient for all of our travel needs.  I look forward to using it in a few weeks on our next trip.  In the meantime, I am definitely going to be using it around town to check out the stability. 




So next time you go to purchase that travel gadget that you will think will make your life so much more convenient, weigh the options, definitely try it out, and check for durability.  If it breaks during your trip, then it won’t be so convenient.



Fill out the form below to get started planning your next European Vacation.  Looking for a motor coach tour, self-drive, or private tour, we can easily put together the perfect European vacation for you and your family’s needs. 

When you book your vacation with a member of the Life is Better Traveling Team, you are supporting local families and business.  Thank you to everyone who has supported us over the past 4 years, we have become an AMAZING travel agency due to your support!

Tired of Walking Through the Airport?

Tired of Walking Through the Airport?
You can have your own motorized luggage to get you through the airport in half the time…

Have you ever considered riding your suitcase around the airport to make it easier for you to get around?  I have not but it didn’t stop Chicago entrepreneur and avid traveler Kevin O’Donnell from taking his concept of a riding your suitcase through the airport and bringing it to fruition.  So let’s talk about the Modo Bag.  

What is the Modo bag?  It is a piece of carry-on motorized luggage that you sit on and it will take you around the airport at the highest speed at 8mph.  Since a person walks at an average pace of 3.1mph, this would be allow a person to get around the airport at twice the speed.  The person has control as to how fast and the direction of the luggage, all while sitting down on its lightweight aluminum chassis with comfortable foot rests. 

How does the Modo bag work?  Like any other device, you simply plug in the bag to get it fully charged, only 1 hour of charging, and then you are ready to take it for a stroll.  The charge is said to last up to 6 miles of drive time, and you can get over 4000 full charge cycles.  The bag even has two USB charging ports so you never have to fight for a charging station at the airport again.  

How much space is there for my belongings?  The size of the bag is pretty standard for a carry on which is 22”x14”x9”, the maximum allowance for a carry on.  However, a piece of luggage without all the additional equipment needed for the Modo bag would give you around 2,772 cubic inches of space where the Modo bag says that it gives you 2,000 cubic inches.  You are losing about a third of the normal storage space.  There are also several pockets on the outer portion of the suitcase to fit magazines, books, smart tablets, and your cell phone.  On the downside, the bag does weigh close to 20 pounds without any of your stuff in the bag.  

Can I fit myself and my husband on at the same time?  Probably not, as there is a weight limit of up to 260 pounds, but you were thinking it.  Possiby an adult and small child could fit on together, but again, it would depend on if there is enough room for both passengers to sit.  

Does the Modo bag comply with TSA and airline regulations?  Currently, the Modo bag does and the founder, Kevin, has used the bag on several of his trips with no hassles, just ohhhs and ahhhs.  

What happens if the airport is too crowded and I can’t ride my luggage?  I think that would be sad, but you can always tote your luggage behind you the old fashioned way.  

Can I purchase the Modo bag today and what does it cost?  Currently the Modo bag is still being perfected but they do plan to start shipping out bags in January of 2017, and if you wanted to pre-order one you can do so for the price tag of $995 plus the cost of shipping.  I honestly do think this is a steal as you have your own personal charging station for all of your electronic devices, you have the ease of getting around the airport without walking, you can use it for other activities such as a work bag that you ride to work, you get 4000 full charge cycles which should last the average traveler many years, and no matter what age you are, you will look pretty cool riding around on one of these.  

If you want to see how the Modo bag works, please feel free to visit their website…Click Here



Congratulations to Mary! 

She recently earned the distinguished Certified Travel Associate (CTA) designation from the Travel Institute, the travel industry’s oldest education organization.  She completed a comprehensive exam-based training program that demonstrates extensive industry knowledge and experience, and she must continue to fulfill stringent education credit requirements each year. 

Have a Great Week!


All photos, rights reserved by those who produced them, and Yohannan family.