1.) Travel lite. We had one carry-on plus back pack. All money and passport in money belt at all times:). We handled our own luggage easily and it made packing and unpacking super quick and it is very difficult for a pick pocket to take money if money belt is secure under clothes.
2.) Consider washing your own clothes. 7-11 has bar soap laundry detergent and if you roll your clothes in a pack towel and hang they will be dry in the a.m. saves time and $$. There was a good bit of "drama" as we moved from place to place last year. Some families had the laundry sent out an d it was not ready in the time frame people were expecting as they were trying to use cheaper laundry services than the hotel provided.
3.) RULE # 1 NO electronic device (ED) in use while CCCWA/BLAS Staff speak or at the amazing sights. Leave in Hotel or use during personal time only. I was very disappointed to see so many children engrossed in an ED at inappropriate times. It reflects more on the parents than the children.
We LOVED our journey last year. Iris and Anna are hoping to go back to China in 2013.
We were so very grateful to be apart of the 2011 tour . It was an answer to my daughter Anna's prayer to go back to China. The trip truly would have been impossible without the grant from CCCWA for the girls travel expenses. Our favorite part was going to the CCCWA/BLAS office and getting to know their staff. What a great honour for us. Certainly we loved seeing the sights too.
Thank you so very much for allowing us the opportunity to be a part of the 2011 trip.