Pre-Holiday Travel Checklist

Before you leave, green-travel-tips like a home-security-check for one, can prevent unexpected expenses when you return.

Put these pre-vacation-planning tips to good use before you leave on that holiday you've saved and waited patiently for all year.

It's nice to put your stresses and worries of everyday life aside for a period of time, and head out to a getaway location for fun in the sun, or any place that provides peace and quiet and some well deserved relaxation. We all need that, and it takes sometimes a fair amount of planning and especially saving hard-earned money all year to make your dream vacation come true.

Now, imagine being called home to take care of a terrible and costly emergency?"

Before you leave home, get the most out of that hard-earned money by implementing some good green-travel-tips that won't needlessly cost you while you are away but may save money instead.

Green-travel-tips about air-conditioning: Whether you are away for a few days or a few weeks, your air-conditioning doesn't need to be running for nothing. Turn it down, or better yet, a thermostat that is programmable gives you the ability to set up the system to come back on just before you arrive home from holidays.

Keep the heat out. Cover the windows with good shades, drapes or curtains. When the AC comes on it won't have to work too hard to cool off the house.

Heard of phantom power? These are appliances that continue to draw power after that have been seemingly switched off. Take a walk through your home before you leave. Unplug your kitchen appliances and your home entertainment units manually if they aren't already plugged into power strips that you can turn off.

Turn the ice-maker off to prevent flooding.

If you are on electric heat, turn off the circuit breaker. If it's winter where you live, be careful not to turn your heat down too low. You don't want the upset of frozen pipes.

Turn your hot water heater down. A good "before you leave" green-travel-tip to remember to save on electricity is this one for sure.

Turn down the waterbed by 10 degrees.

Check for fire hazzards. Make sure there is nothing flammable near or covering heat vents.

Make sure you have all of your home-insurance affairs in order.

Make sure someone has your contact information in case there is an emergency at your home.

Deter the burglars. A single light left on will deter the burglars, but maybe only for a short time.

There are light devices you can purchase that go a step further to discourage criminals that just might be onto the pattern of one light. These devices turn the lights on and off automatically which gives your house an even more lived-in look. Not only will it confuse the would-be burglar, it will save money on your hydro bill.

There are also light-timers with rotary dials and numerous buttons enabling lights to go off and on in different spots many times during the course of the day. Some people feel even more secure with this type of device and energy saver.

Be sure your valuables are well hidden just in case. Don't forget to turn on your alarm system, and make sure all entrances to your home are securely locked.

Let your local Police Department know you will be away. They may gladly be happy to take an occasional drive around your property for a quick home-security-check.

Clean out the refrigerator. Don't waste energy keeping out-of-date items cold.

Save on wasting paper, and save trees. Be sure to cancel your newspaper and flyer deliveries while you are gone. Or, ask a neighbour to faithfully pick up your papers and mail.

If you are going to be away for a significant period of time check into having cable, satellite, and telephone services temporarily suspended for a reduced rate.

If you aren't going to be gone too long, be sure your answering machine is set to pick up in a timely manner.

Take care of your plants. Don't come home to dried out dead plants. You invest alot of money over time in your houseplants. Make sure they stay hydrated with a slow-release watering device. There are models you can purchase that will keep your plants healthy and happy for as long as four weeks.

Remember, your plants are keeping your air purified as well while you are gone.

Make sure someone is watering your lawn and outdoor vegetables and flower gardens and pots.

Get rid of your garbage. Don't attract unwanted animals if there are any around to household garbage and cause damage to your property in the process.

By following these simple green-travel-tips, your home will operate in an energy efficient manner and not be draining your wallet while you are gone. You want to be able to afford a vacation next year too!

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