Training Videos

Video 1, The Art of Packing Light

Video 2, Advanced Packing

Some of you are already masters of packing light. Congratulations! You probably won’t learn much in this video, but you might be interested in some of my favorite gear. Here are some links.

Video 3, SmartPhones and Money

Frequent questions have to do with cell phones and how to get cash to buy stuff. This video gives you the answers and options, both for keeping connected to the rest of the world and for funding your fun. You frequent international travelers probably have this down already, but for those of you who are concerned for either of both of these issues, this video is for you. Just be certain to watch it early enough to have time to address any issues well ahead of our travel.

Video 4, Personal Security

Refuse to let fear or worry put a damper on your experience! Personal security is a legitimate concern. Risk is a part of life, but there is a difference between risk and recklessness. Risk can be managed but recklessness is not acceptable. Learn the difference. Here are five simple but effective practices to manage risk while traveling and greatly reduce your chances of being the victim of pickpockets or petty theft. Even those of you who travel regularly should carefully view this video so that every member of our travel group can be on the same page. You may know how to take care of yourself, but by all of us following the same practices we can learn to take care of each other.

Video 5, Eating Like Europeans

Meals and related customs are an important part of any culture. A cultural immersion experience requires jumping directly into the deep end of the pool. Lucky you! In addition to the hints on this video, here are some links to supplement your understanding.

Video 6, Don’t Be THAT American!

Some funny, some infuriating and all educational. Check out these supplemental links and Google as many more as you can take!

Video 7, Using Public Transportation

Some people in the United States have a bad image of public transportation or have no idea how efficient it can be in Europe. This video is a primer for those who don’t have much experience with public transportation and, even for those of us who do, it gives some basic instruction for those few times that we will venture out with public transportation as a group. Is that even possible? Yes!

Beneath video 7 are two other brief videos to give you a different and specific perspective on using public transportation in both Paris and Amsterdam. Highly recommended! If you are just really fascinated by this stuff, you can Google tons more.

You can use maps in the stations to figure out how to get from point A to point B in both cities. However, I recommend you download a couple of apps onto your smartphone and using public transportation will suddenly become a snap. I use MetrO Kinevia on my iPhone and have used it for years. It’s simple accurate and good for just about any city in the world with public transportation. I’m not sure it’s still available for Android. In Amsterdam, 9292 is a very handy app to determine the best routes to get to all the places you want to go. As you can imagine, on either the Apple App Store or Google’s Play Store you can find gazillions of competing apps and knock yourself out finding the one you like the best. But, I do recommend you learn to use an app or two to help you navigate both cities. To be honest, if you have an iPhone, the latest version of apps gives you great information on using public transportation or walking from Point A to Pain B.

Video 8, How to Maximize your Experience

This is the final required training video and it contains tips for how to maximize your time in Paris and Amsterdam.

Various versions of the Diary of Anne Frank and Corrie ten Boom’s The Hiding Place are available on Amazon Video and YouTube.

You will receive a Paris Museum Pass upon arrival. This official website gives you an idea of places where can use it in addition to those places where we will go as a group.

In Amsterdam you will have a similar museum card. Here is where you can explore the doors that it opens.

Two good books are Xenophobe’s Guide to the Dutch by Rodney Bolt and Amsterdam: A History of the World’s Most Liberal City by Russell Shorto.