Top 12 TIPS for TRAVELING with KIDS

Kurt.nzTravel

Traveling is great but it can also be challenging. And traveling with kids is a whole different ball game! But don’t be put off, it’s incredibly rewarding and doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are our top tips for traveling with children. Give them time to play. This means having unstructured time during the day where you’re not rushing to get somewhere. It also means taking your time when you are going somewhere. If they find something interesting on the way, let them stop and check it out. That’s much better than them being bored. This leads to our second tip… Don’t rush, less is more. Allow plenty of time for activities, travel and day to day errands. You’ll enjoy it more when you’re not rushed. If you finish something earlier than you expected, that’s fine. Have a coffee and … Read More

Top 8 TIPS for EUROPE with KIDS

Kurt.nzTravel

Europe is amazing. For anyone from a younger country such as the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, the history in Europe is mind-boggling. But it’s also different to what we’re used to, in many ways. Here are our top tips for traveling Europe with children. Expose them to the different languages but don’t try to force them to speak it. It’s best when they hear you speaking a few words, or when they hear it spoken on a playground. They’ll naturally start to pick words up, you don’t need to force it. Look for playgrounds and outdoor spaces wherever you go. Everything is more compact in Europe and playgrounds aren’t in obvious places, sometimes you have to seek them out. Some cultures adore kids, some don’t. Don’t expect everyone to be happy that you’ve taken your kids to a … Read More

Top 9 TIPS for FLYING with KIDS

Kurt.nzTravel

The fear of flying with their children is possibly the biggest reason parents choose not to travel. It can be daunting. But it’s also entirely manageable. Here are our top tips for flying long-haul with children. If your kids are young enough, book a bassinet seat (behind the bulkhead). If not, aisle seats are much better than window seats, you’ll be moving round a lot. It seems obvious, but take your kids to the toilet just before you board. You can be sitting on the tarmac or taxiing for some time. Give your kids a drink or a lollipop to suck on when taking off and landing, it’ll help them equalize their ears. Always take spare clothes for you and your children in carry on, you never know what will happen in flight. Let them be movie zombies. Even if … Read More

How to WORK while TRAVELING with KIDS

Kurt.nzBusiness, career, finance, Travel

If you’re lucky enough to be able to travel long-term with your children without having to work, that’s awesome! But for the rest of us, we probably need to be doing some sort of work on the road. Because of the type of business I have, I’ve done everything from accounts, building websites, Zoom meetings, managing staff, editing videos and everything in-between, all while traveling. Here are my top 11 tips for remote working while traveling with kids. Decide. Are you on holiday, or are you simply working in a different place? I.e. is travel your main priority and can your work suffer as a result? Or is work your first priority, and then you’re fitting some travel around that? If you can decide first, you shouldn’t feel guilty. If work is your priority then you won’t feel bad about … Read More

Top 3 MISTAKES parents make when TRAVELING

Kurt.nzTravel

We’ve travelled a lot with our kids, and made so many mistakes I’ve lost count. Here are the top 3 that we need to constantly remind ourselves of. Trying to do too much. This is a massive temptation and can take all the fun out of traveling. If you find yourself dragging your kids from place to place you’re probably guilty of this. Not having any food on you. Don’t rely on being able to buy something then and there. Always have something on you that the kids can munch on. Not having some time apart from the kids. You need your sanity, and the kids need a break too. Get a babysitter at least once. Cabin fever is real. For more videos and tips on traveling with kids: https://bit.ly/breetventures

Top 5 TIPS for FLYING with kids during COVID

Kurt.nzTravel

Coronavirus may well have changed air travel forever. If airport security hadn’t already made flying with kids complicated, a pandemic has doubled the administration required. But with a bit of research and pre-planning, you can get through it. Here are our top five tips for flying with kids post-COVID. Check, double check and then triple check the rules, and don’t assume anything. You need to check the airport rules, the airline rules, the destination rules, and also any stop-over or transit location rules. They are not all the same, some will require things that others don’t, including tests at different ages. We almost missed a series of three flights because we hadn’t seen the correct rules for a short refueling stop. Make sure you check the official airport or government website for the current requirements. The rules change constantly and … Read More

Top 10 TIPS for DISNEYLAND PARIS

Kurt.nzTravel

You never quite understand the scale and intensity of a Disneyland theme park until you visit it. The amount of people, the attention to detail, the sheer size of all the buildings and rides. It’s something out of this world. It’s amazing, a little bit overwhelming, and totally worth it. These tips will make your trip to Disneyland Paris just that much better. Have a relaxing day beforehand and an early night. You don’t want to be going there already tired. Also, don’t plan on doing anything too strenuous the day after. You and your kids will all be tired and will need a sleep in. Download the Disneyland Paris app. This has a map and will show real time wait times. But print out a map too, looking at a small map on your phone in the bright sun … Read More

Top 8 TIPS for PARIS with KIDS

Kurt.nzTravel

There’s a reason Paris is near the top of most traveler’s lists. There is an insane amount of history and culture, and no matter how many times you go, you’re always discovering something new. But should you go with kids? With these tips, you should be able to find a happy compromise between keeping the kids happy while still getting your Paris fix. Paris is huge, so stay as close to the center as your budget allows. The less travel time on the metro the better, especially after a long day or during rush hour. If you have a car, try and find accommodation with parking included. You won’t need the car in Paris. Don’t try to pack too much in each day. We’ve found that two main things a day is usually achievable. Try and mix them up, maybe … Read More

Highlights from the weekly Kurt bulletin

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Kurt.nz-bulletin-weekly-newsletter

Here are a few excerpts from the bulletin I send every Friday. The bulletin is a collection of 5 things you may find helpful. If you’d like to see more, sign up! Thought of the week “In theory there’s no difference between theory and practice. But, in practice, there is.”-Jan L. A. van de Snepscheut, computer scientist What are you theorising about that you just need to put into practice to test? Turning an old laptop into a Chromebook Another project I’ve completed is converting an old Dell Inspiron Mini laptop into a Chromebook for the kids. I’ve had this laptop for about 10 years and eventually the Windows 7 starter edition it came with just wouldn’t boot up. So I erased it all and made it a simple Chromebook. You can surf the net, watch movies and do basic … Read More

The end of the road

Kurt.nzTravel

Routine. Routine the great equaliser. The great smotherer of all things different. The inevitable steamroller of all the peaks of life. It’s what we hold to; it’s what we’ve come from, and what we’ll always return to. Routine and time. Time the great healer, time the memory fader, time the double edged sword, time the… ok enough of the cheesy philosophy, I don’t think it becomes me as of yet, I’m still too young and I don’t have a beard. But I think you know what I’m getting at. Two days back and it seems like I never left. Like the past six months was some feature movie I watched last night. Are we that desensitised or forgetful? That six months of adventure is just part of our routine entertainment? Or is that just blatant prosperity, that we take those … Read More

The closing scenes

Kurt.nzTravel

How does that old saying go? ‘What goes around comes around?’ And so it was that after years of hustling, bargaining, and taking advantage of vulnerable motorcycle sellers in New Zealand, the exact same thing happened to me in Holland. I sold my bike. But being in the precarious position of wanting to fly home, and selling just when winter’s about to start, I got cleaned out with a steel wire brush. Ok maybe not that bad but at least a plastic bristled brush. Putting it in perspective it was only a few hundred dollars loss which isn’t bad for 8,500 km and six months of use. But I’m comparing the deal to my three other bikes I’ve owned in NZ where I actually made a profit when I sold them again. Which is a decidedly better position to be … Read More

The last of the German speaking countries

Kurt.nzTravel

They say bad things happen in threes. Well, upon arrival back at Gomaringen in Germany I was a little surprised to find my bike was dead. Not only would it not start with the key but I pushed it up a hill about a hundred times to crash start it but no go. I figured out the battery was completely dead and beyond the chargeable stage. So, new battery. Then, after a ride through the Black Forest, my air vent cover came loose. I stopped on the motorway to get it and after about twenty cars the very last one ran it over and shattered it. Great, so new air vent cover. Then I found out Davids cousin had written off his Suzuki 750. Not a good week for motorbikes in that area. I just hope the three bad things … Read More

Poor in Albania

Kurt.nzTravel

When I said Hvar was pleasant, Korcula was remarkable. Dubrovnik was a bigger Korcula, and Montenegro was a revelation! On the bus towards Kotor we saw the deepest fjord in southern Europe. It was a shame we didn’t have more time in the country but we weren’t expecting to be going through there anyway so anything we saw was a bonus. And I can safely say that I would definitely be happy to go back, perhaps even more than Croatia. We weren’t completely sure what to expect, the limit of my knowledge was Google earth, lonely planet, and Casino Royale. In many ways it was actually reminiscent of Morocco. The not so developed infrastructure, the beautiful landscapes, and the prices. Seriously, where else could you get a very professional haircut for only five euro? I think I was in desperate … Read More

103 Dalmatians

Kurt.nzTravel

“Hello, accommodation?” “No thanks” “OK, bye” Wow, what a difference from the Moroccan way of spinning the biggest lies and following you down the street to force a sale until they can latch onto the next tourist. This is the enterprising but ever so polite Croatian way. Plenty of sales offers but when you say no they take it as no. Ferrying from Ancona in Italy to Split and then the island of Hvar we managed to score probably one of the nicest rooms on the island with its own en suite and kitchen. I have to say I immediately fell in love with Croatia. Its polite people and relaxed atmosphere all set in beautiful roman style marble towns with an awesome climate certainly is my idea of a holiday. Two days of wandering the town of Hvar and its … Read More

All roads lead to Padova

Kurt.nzTravel

You know all the clichés you learn about Italian people? How they’re always loud and dramatic and love food? It’s all true. Clive and I had dropped Martin off at the train station in La Spezia and had found a bed and breakfast a little way out of town. So here we were sitting in a completely local restaurant in the middle of nowhere and we had the restaurant staff and all the patrons discussing quite vigorously everything from which item was best on the menu for us to what we should definitely see in their particular area, it was awesome! The only thing missing was Tony Soprano sitting in the corner contemplating who to whack next. Their lack of English was quite noticeable but boy do they make up for it by trying hard. That experience in itself was … Read More

C’est le Wi-Fi Rangers!

Kurt.nzTravel

I don’t think you ever realise how manacled we are to the internet until you’re away from it for a while. This is what found Clive, Martin, and I driving around a wine store in a random little French town called St Chinian trying to get the best signal from the unsecured Wi-Fi network inside. Martin had bought along his IPod which proved to be invaluable for the internet. Sometimes we’d be walking around the most beautiful city just looking for an unsecured network. Wi-Fi Rangers all the way! Staying for three days with Uncle Gerard from Holland at his holiday house in Babeau, Southern France was so good. A perfect break during our sometimes taxing travel, especially after Morocco. There’s something therapeutic about staying amongst vineyards, meandering rivers, cute villages, and genuine rural French people. A bit of a … Read More

Hola Espana

Kurt.nzTravel

I guess people celebrate the passing of years in different ways, especially when it’s a momentous one. For me 25 isn’t that big or depressing despite the fact that it’s a quarter century. And what better way to celebrate it than in Spain? You know what I did? I had a beautiful restaurant dinner in a hotel by myself in a town I didn’t even know the name of. How cool is that! OK I looked on the map and the towns name is Loja. Look it up, I turned 25 there. Actually the day itself was pretty cool it’s just that at dinner time Clive really needed to lie down, the remnants of Moroccan stomach still lingering. So he shouted me dinner and went to bed. So there I was sitting by myself after a drive from Tangier to … Read More

Top ten sales pitches

Kurt.nzTravel

Out of all the prep for my trip, the thing I´m most happy with was the French I´ve learnt. So as usual with something recently learnt you try and impart this knowledge to other people. Clive, being the only one who would listen, seemed like the best student. I noticed one day whilst speaking with some locals that he was sort of acting strangely though. He kept swinging the conversation in certain directions and took great pains to try and explain certain things using hand gestures. Finally he managed to ask the fisherman if he had caught any fish knowing full well the answer. No. That was when Clive reached his point. Leaning back, a pleased grin on his face as he glanced at me, he uttered “ahh, c´est la vie”. I suddenly knew what it had all been about. … Read More

Sneaky sales system

Kurt.nzTravel

I have an idea to start a course for salesmen, and it’s held in Morocco. Seriously, one day of working alongside a Moroccan vendor and you would be the craftiest, sneakiest, most conniving salesman ever back in NZ. There are volumes of books that could be written on their techniques. We took the road to Marrakech from Casablanca and on the way we were waved down by a motorist who had his bonnet up on the side of the road. Actually, despite my introduction on sneaky sales techniques I think this guy was genuine, but the conniving will come into this story later. Anyway, we picked him up and he seemed quite refined. We dropped him at the nearest mechanics and he asked us to drop a note to his family which was on the way to where we were … Read More

Oleeee ole ole ole

Kurt.nzTravel

I have to admit, seeing a familiar face after a few weeks of just meeting new people is pretty cool. I was quite glad when Clive walked out of the arrivals at Casablanca airport. I could have said “see, I survived this far despite your videos at the going away party“ but I didn’t. It got me thinking though, what have I survived thus far? Amsterdam, Belgian roads, the French language, wind and rain in France, a night hugging my motorcycle for warmth, Swiss chocolates, illegally abseiling a German tower, crazy Spanish drivers, crazier Moroccan drivers, mysterious ship explosions, and countless hustlers. Not a bad effort I guess but the best was yet to come in Morocco. I have to say, staying with Yassine and Amin was the best introduction anyone could have. Thanks to them I am now hooked … Read More

Possums are pests, and probably not Kosher either

Kurt.nzTravel

How is this for pretty much my first conversation in Spain, and in Spanish what’s more? “Pardon sir, in order for ´something´ street?” “Oh , umm, wait. I think…there“ “Here?“ “Yes“ “Thanks so much“ “That´s ok“ You know the funny part about that? I was the one being asked for directions. So a Spanish guy asked me, a kiwi who had been in the country for 2 hours, for directions in his own country. Priceless. There´s probably a middle aged man lost wandering the streets of Madrid right about now but hey it felt good to speak Spanish and give someone directions. Madrid itself was grand, especially the palace. And so much more since that particular day entry was free for EU citizens so I was Dutch that day again. I was staying in a hostel and met a guy … Read More

This is Baden-Württemberg man!

Kurt.nzTravel

I think now is an apt time to explain the ´suiting up´ process as I´ll call it for getting ready to go on a motorbike trip. First I put the over trousers on, tightening the strap at the waist and making sure the knee and hip protectors are in place. I then slip on my riding boots and laces. Then I put a thermal or jacket on, pulling on a balaclava type scarf over the top to stop the wind coming under the helmet, and of course to stop the helmet strap chaffing my designer stubble. Next comes the jacket, which is no small feat depending on how much clothing is underneath. It also has a zip and dome clips. Keys, wallet, phone, insurance papers, ownership papers, compulsory EU crash form, check. MP3 player, or ear plugs in, helmet on, … Read More

Swiss stereotypes

Kurt.nzTravel

The contrast between French Switzerland and German Switzerland is amazing. When you start in the south west and head north east it’s like going through a different country. In the French part they speak, surprise surprise, French. All the signs are in French and the cities are not as well kept as what you’d expect from a German. To me Geneva could have been a French city. On the ride north the change happened somewhere in between two little towns. I passed a whole lot of French signs and then just like that everything was German. I suddenly realised that I really don’t speak any German at all. Sad one. The day after I arrived in Geneva I went to the UN headquarters. It rained the whole day but it was OK, I was inside the place exploring where the … Read More

Australian pick-up lines

Kurt.nzTravel

“Do you want some company or are you a man who likes to eat alone?” Now let me ask you one thing, does that sound like a pick up line to you? It certainly does to me. So here I was in Geneva sitting by myself in the hostel restaurant enjoying a dinner of cordon bleu and spaghetti bolognaise, complete with some sort of custard cream for dessert. This was luxury compared to my dinner of weetbix and a vitamin pill in Clermont-Ferrand the night before. Anyway, I heard the family of Australians walk in and I thought ´I should go and sit with them´. You can tell I was longing for company if I was considering eating with Australians. I´d been speaking mostly French for the last couple of days with bits of English and I really wanted to … Read More

French faire

Kurt.nzTravel

I’ve actually been very spoiled in terms of gastronomy in France. Every place I’ve stayed in has had beautiful authentic French meal. Even when they cook something simple they manage to make it so delicious. Eating here is almost ritualistic. First you have an entrée of soup, salad, or bread. Then you have the mains. Then you have a digestive of cheese and bread, then there’s dessert. And of course you have wine during the meal. This can be done for every meal of the day, ok maybe not quite breakfast. So it appears the mainstay of the French appetite is bread, cheese, and wine. Nice. I was riding away from Ploermel after seeing Vannes the previous day – beautiful little city. I was heading to La Rochelle further down the coast. As my usual luck was continuing the weather … Read More

What a couple of days

Kurt.nzTravel

After a breakfast of a couple of pieces of toast (now that I am on the continent) I was chugging away towards Rouen. I was still unsure of my next destination as I had contacted a few people to host me but none had replied. Foolishly I was hoping to be able to check my emails on the way and that someone would reply. On the way, Rouen was a very different city to the others I had just been to. It’s right on a river which winds its way through a gorge and Rouen is nestled in between this. Very picturesque and lots of spires I thought. But onwards I went, stopping at a camping ground to see if they had internet. This is where I found out the French I had learnt was surprisingly good and useful, even … Read More

The road to Wissant

Kurt.nzTravel

The next day I was on the road heading for a little French village called Wissant. I must say, the ride started pretty well, okay so the weather was a bit cloudy, but the going was good and I was in high spirits. And then I hit Belgium also known as worst-roads-in-Western-Europe-for-a-motorbike. Seriously, I was on the best highway they had and there were bumps that knocked me off my saddle every ten meters. Then to make it even more interesting there were grooves in each lane where vehicles had been over and over. I felt like I was on some old cart worn Roman road. I hadn’t expected this until at least Eastern Europe. As I was going along I looked down from the highway and saw a tractor going along what looked like a better road. Where’s the … Read More

The old and the new

Kurt.nzTravel

Anyone who knows their New Zealand history knows that it was a Dutchman that was the first European to discover NZ. But did you know that he named it after an area in Holland? Well, not him but his cartographers anyway. I rode around Zeeland in the south of Holland, or Old Zeeland if you prefer, just to see whether it really is anything like my homeland. And it was! Take away the windmills, quaint villages, and people driving on the wrong side of the road and it could have been any beach on the Coromandel or Far North. There were white sand dunes, tufts of tussock grass, and waves. Of course the sea is a lot colder being the North Sea so I don’t think there’s any swimming between the flags here. There’s also the Dutch answer to tides … Read More

The long and the short of it…

Kurt.nzTravel

Here is a random fact. The Dutch overall are the tallest people in the world. The average height of a Dutchman is 6-foot 1 inch. So, this begs one question; where on earth did all those Dutch genes disappear on me? No, that wasn’t the question I was thinking of but is another side issue because of my mish mash of Dutch, Irish, and Polish blood. The real question is how come they make their houses and buildings so small? Seriously, tallest people in the world, smallest houses in the universe, I don’t quite see the connection. It’s not the citizens fault though; they do a fine job of expanding their living area into every imaginable space of land available to them. But they get such small plots of land. I guess the dykes and canals do take up a … Read More

Flying sardines and anti-jetlag

Kurt.nzTravel

Long haul flights are not fun. That may sound like the understatement of the trip, but it must be said just in case you think I’m the type of traveller who defines ‘well travelled’ as the most amount of miles covered in the shortest amount of time. Flying really is a means to an end, unless of course something interesting happens while on board. The only thing that could have interested me on this particular trip would have been us having to make an emergency landing, in which case that may have been the end, not the means. Alas, this journey really was uneventful. Auckland to Sydney was the first leg, and then I had a brief respite from my flying cell. I took a train into the centre of the city and saw the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, … Read More