photo slideshow


Friday, 25 November 2016

Happy Thanksgiving! What are you thankful for this year?

Being Malaysian (and half British), I don't usually celebrate Thanksgiving, but seeing all the Instagram posts from Americans that I follow, got me thinking, and seeing as it's still Thanksgiving where it's celebrated (we are at least 12 hours ahead!), here's what I'm thankful for this 2016:

Not gonna lie, 2016 has been a tough year, not just for me but seemingly for most people (if the media is to be believed). Even so, it hasn't all been bad, and today is the day to reflect on the good!

I'm especially grateful for my career this year. Getting to do the things you love for a living isn't something everyone can say, and I have to admit I have the best of a lot of worlds right now. I am thankful that I get to be a radio announcer with the best team at hitz fm Sabah.

I am thankful I get to perform on stage yet again for Ultraman Live with an amazing team called One Universal Production. Two jobs that I love, are also two things I'd never have dreamed of doing, yet by a fluke the opportunity came and I found my calling.

I am thankful for my wonderful family, near and far. That we have each others' backs and we are so tight-knit, even though miles may separate us at times. That we don't have to say a word to know how much we love each other.

I am thankful for the people I love, and all of the people who love and take care of me. Whether you have been in my life for years, or we've not long met, or we don't even keep in touch that often any more. You have all left marks on my heart for better or worse, and I am thankful that in a sea of people, we got to touch each other's lives. Also, having a soulmate is not always about love. You can find your soulmate in friendship too, and I'm thankful I get to say I've found mine.

I am thankful for health, my own and of people I love. A few scares this year and some bad news hit home how nothing is really forever. A quote I recently read:

It's true, and it sucks, but the only thing we can do is make that time the best it could be.

And last but not least, I am thankful for my readers/followers. Without the support of sometimes complete strangers, my life would be so different, and not in a good way! Thank you so much for still reading my (inconsistent) blog posts, for watching my (even less consistent) videos, and keeping up with my life on all forms on social media. I may not be as active as other bloggers/social media influencers, but you guys keep me loving it all the same. Every year I vow to work on my time management skills, and every year I seem to lapse, but here's to 2017 eh? =P I don't say it enough, but I love and appreciate every single one of you who is still here with me on this journey.
Source: Pinterest
So there it is! Everything I'm thankful for (and what came to mind with less than 30 minutes to write this). Happy thanksgiving; what are you thankful for? Drop me a comment below; I would love to know at least one!

Thankful for your love,
Calista xx

Monday, 17 October 2016

#hitzEscape: Bastille, Queen + Adam Lambert in Singapore!!

I'm a HUGE fan of Adam Lambert, so when my brother Oliver & I heard he was gonna be performing with Queen for F1 Singapore, we bought tickets right away!
Adam Lambert rocked the Singapore Grand Prix with Queen!
That's one thing about Merlion City though: they have so many music and art festivals going on all year round, and they bring some pretty awesome international artists over for concerts. Do some research, and you can probably catch some cool events not too far from home!
Bastille was awesome!
I spent almost a week there, mostly hanging with friends, but I did get to spend a day at Universal Studios Singapore - my very first time! It's near Sentosa, so if you wanna go you can take the mrt to Harbourfront station, head into Vivo City, then take the Sentosa Express to Waterfront station. Go early if you want to make the most out of your ticket (we paid $60 each, from Klook), they open at 10am - 6pm. Best time to go would be a weekday not long after the school holidays as it's quieter and the queues weren't too long.

MUST TRY: Transformers (virtual reality rollercoaster), Mummy Returns (also VR), and Battlestar Galactica (Human VS Cyborg rollercoasters)

To make your trip easier, you might wanna get a tourist sim when you reach the airport, especially if you're taking public transport. I was dying of boredom on the train (I stayed at my friend's place in Admiralty, so it was a good 90 mins before I reached her via mrt), and I have internet withdrawals anyway lol. The one I got was from Singtel, $15 for 5 days and 4gb of data.

Speaking of the mrt, getting a reloadable touch-n-go type card is cheaper and more convenient than constantly buying single trips, and don't worry about getting lost: Julie recommended THIS awesome website to help me get around - it gives you exact directions including which bus to take and how many stops til you need to alight!

Places to visit of course include Orchard Road (no shopping if you're like us though; it's way above our paygrade lol), Bugis (pretty cool mall and a higher end street market where you can get a variety of things, like more affordable clothes, trinkets, and food), and Chinatown.

If you head to Chinatown, don't miss the Chinatown Food Complex, where you can get the best chicken rice in the world - no exaggeration! Hong Kong Soy Sauce Chicken Rice was awarded one Michelin star recently, and it is the first hawker stall in the world to receive one! We queued for about half an hour at around 2.30pm, but before we even reached halfway, they told us they had sold out. Queues are usually up to 3 hours long though, and even before they were in every food blog and newspaper, queues could still reach 30 - 40 mins during lunch time. I plan to go try my luck another time =P

What do you like to do in Singapore? Drop me a comment! 
Don't forget to follow me on Instagram @CalistaLeahLiew & Snapchat @CalistaLeah;
And join me on the hitz Playlist every weekday 10am - 1pm on hitz fm Sabah 
100.8 in Kota Kinabalu & 99.8 in Sandakan! 
*Daily #hitzEscape tips at 12pm

Love always,
Calista xx

Saturday, 1 October 2016

#hitzEscape: Everything You Need in Malaysia

Hey guys!

So the hitz Escape has been missing for a while, but only because I've been compiling a huge post for Malaysia month, and then been collecting cool stuff to share from a week in Singapore- but that's in my next post!

September is basically Malaysia month, with all Malaysians celebrating the formation of Malaysia from 31st August up til 16th September. #hitzEscape got friends from every different state to share the best of the best:
Blending into the street art in Georgetown
Penang: We all know that Penang is Malaysian food central! Angus recommends char kuey teow, assam laksa & cendol to cool off. Take a walk around Georgetown to check out the cool street art, and walk off that full stomach to get ready for your next meal! Check out my last trip HERE.

Pahang: Wendy comes from a small town in Kuantan called Sungai Lembing. The most interesting thing about that town? There is actually a museum where you can see all kinds of crystals which are collected from the hill nearby! Some of the crystals are also for sale. Hey, not every day you can buy a crystal so close to source right?

Negeri Sembilan: Best thing about Seremban? Elsa says you gotta try the food! Most people know about the famous Seremban BBQ crabs and Seremban siew pau, but there are also some traditional food which non-locals might not know of, like octopus noodles (which you can find at the morning market), Chan Pau aka buns with filling, like siew pau, and Xiao Huang Mian Bao, which is basically bread filled with cream. Wanna go to the beach? Port Dickson is right down the road!

Kedah: Alor Setar is Ka Mei's hometown, and she recommends visitors to go to the old towns like Pekan Rabu & Pekan Cina. There's lots of good food at the morning market, and if you are feeling peckish at midnight, the curry mee is awesome! The Alor Setar tower is also worth a visit if you're around the area!
Chicken Rice Balls!
Malacca: History buffs will be spoilt for choice! Check out the old fort A' Famosa and the old church just next to it, as well as spending a night at Jonker Street on the weekends for Malaysia's most famous night market. Famous dishes in Malacca include chicken rice balls, satay celup and the most amazing coconut shake. Need a tour guide? Hit Dave up!

Perlis: The smallest state of Malaysia is known as a rock climbing haven and has two very special things: The "Cave of Darkness", aka Gua Kelam, and a special type of mango which is grown only in Perlis! Called Harum Manis, it lives up to it's name by being super sweet, and having a super strong smell.

Perak: Ipoh is the capital of Perak, and Terry suggests dropping by Ipoh Old Town (Yi Lai Hong) to check out the many drawings on the walls which are full of history, and the most unique thing about about Ipoh is the fact that they have a lot of temples, which are inside caves! I've actually seen some of these and they're really beautiful and serene. Food-wise, famous Ipoh chicken rice with taugeh and "gai si hor fun" - shredded chicken in noodle soup are a must-have.
Mindstorms @ Legoland
Johor: Yukiko has really diverse suggestions: Legoland if you have kids; Johor Premium Outlet if you're a shopaholic; & Danga Bay if you just wanna chill. As for food? You can't go wrong with nasi lemak, but personally, I fell in love with the grilled fish & petai!
Trishaw Rides
Kelantan: I went on two separate trips to Kota Bharu, and you can check out my previous posts here and here, but long story short, you can take a trishaw ride around the tourism zone, watch some wayang kulit, or take part in a dikir barat performance. Try out roti titab for breakfast, do NOT miss out on the nasi kerabu, and if you have a sweet-tooth? The kuih over there is super, super sweet.
Awana Kijal @ Terengganu
Terengganu: Obviously, world famous islands Pulau Redang & Pulau Perhentian are a no-brainer. Favourite eats like keropok lekor, nasi dagang, and otak-otak all originate from Terengganu, while you might wanna try out ketupat sotong and the dessert lompat tikam - dessert coconut milk, rice flour, pandan juice

Selangor: There's so much food to be had in Selangor, especially around Subang! Anna suggests heading to USJ 17 for curry mee, or check out 7 Mile Kitchen at Kelana Jaya for really good Sarawak Laksa & Kolok Mee. Wanna go shopping? 1Utama is the biggest mall in Malaysia, and Sunway Pyramid? My fave mall!
Taman Tasik @ Putrajaya
Putrajaya: Famous for its architecture, Putrajaya has so many photo-worthy buildings, and the bridge there is a national landmark. Want pretty pictures and a relaxing few hours? The Taman Tasik Putrajaya is great for photo shoots!

Labuan: In Sabah? Just take a 2 hour drive up to Menumbok, then hop on a speedboat (20 mins) or ferry (about 2 hours), and hello DUTY FREE!!

Kuala Lumpur: Best place for shopping, great food, wonderful landmarks, and always something different going on!

Sarawak: Personally I've only been to Miri - Mulu Caves are the most famous part of Miri, but don't make the same mistake I did! They're actually a 10-hour drive away, or a 30-min domestic flight from Miri town! You can visit the Grand Old Lady on Canada Hill, which is a great place for star-gazing and sunsets, and make sure you don't miss out on the awesome Sarawak laksa! Food is generally quite cheap in most places in Sarawak.

Sabah: So many places to go! Head down to Sandakan for good food, cheap and fresh seafood, UFO (custard) tarts, and visit Agnes Keith House, the harbour, and even the old water village! It's only a 5 hour drive away from KK.
Tip of Borneo, Kudat
Looking to go on a road trip? Take the scenic route to Kudat, and you'll even pass by the jetty to Pulau Mantanani, which is in Kota Belud. Be sure to visit the meeting point of the Sulu sea and South China sea, aka the Tip of Borneo, or the dog ear of Borneo, and take a quick drive around the old town of Kudat.

Love the jungles? Trek to the Lost World of Borneo - Maliau Basin, where the 7-tier waterfall is still virtually untouched due to it's inaccessibility. I really wanna see it, but I'm so afraid of insects, I'll just look at your photos instead.

Just wanna stay around Kota Kinabalu itself? Be a tourist in your own town - you'll probably discover loads of attractions you've never really experienced before, just cz they're always there! Worse comes to worst? There are so many new cafes around town - go find your fave!

What would you suggest about your state? Drop me a comment! 
Don't forget to follow me on Instagram & Facebook @CalistaLeahLiew & Snapchat @CalistaLeah;
And join me on the hitz Playlist every weekday 10am - 1pm on 
hitz fm Sabah 100.8 in Kota Kinabalu & 99.8 in Sandakan! 
*Daily #hitzEscape tips at 12pm

Love always,
Calista x

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Elemis The HERO Collection - Beauty Review

The HERO Collection with the serene backdrop of The Magellan Sutera
For most of us, the quest for healthy skin is an ongoing struggle. For others, the only quest is for health itself. 

This month, you can get closer to reaching your #skingoals, while supporting Breast Cancer Care with Elemis

The Limited Edition ELEMIS: THE HERO COLLECTION comes in pink, which is recognised around the world as the colour to show support for women with breast cancer - and I mean completely pink!
Love the travelling bag!
To raise awareness for Breast Cancer Care, the collection comes in a pink box, with a pink travelling wash-bag. Inside you’ll get 4 products, also completely packaged in pink:

Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream: 

One of the brand's best sellers, this moisturiser is a bit on the pricey side, but according to online reviews, many women swear by it! 

“Clinically proven*, the powerful anti-ageing ingredients have been shown to reduce the depth of wrinkles, improve skin firmness, tone and hydration in 15 days. The unique Mediterranean algae, Padina Pavonica, has been shown to dramatically help skin moisturisation, improving suppleness, firmness and elasticity.”

A bit too rich for my skin, I'm gonna let my mom be the judge of this anti-aging miracle cream. 

Elemis Pro-Collagen Neck and Décolleté Balm: 

This smells really good. 

"Firm and smooth the delicate skin of the neck and décolleté with this powerful balm. In just 28 days this area will appear smoother, softer and more youthful*. Apply morning and evening to neck, decollete and bust area. Massage with light upward strokes and leave for few minutes before dressing."

Great for making your breast self-examination a pleasant one, and not such a chore.

Elemis Frangipani Monoi Body Oil:

This body oil absorbs quickly so you're left with smoother, softer skin that smells heavenly, and no sticky residue.

"This truly exotic oil is rapidly absorbed providing superior moisturisation for dry, parched or mature skin. This product solidifies at cooler temperatures. Place the bottle in a bowl of warm water to return it to a silkly liquid. After bathing, apply to damp skin, massage over the entire body."

The only thing I really wanna know though: how damp is damp?!

Elemis Cellular Recovery Skin Bliss Capsules:
The most luxurious serum I've ever tried. Love the way it warms up almost instantly when you rub your palms together before applying. 

"Formulated with optimum levels of anti-oxidant power to improve the visible signs of ageing and counteract the damaging effects of everyday pollution. These anti-oxidant moisturization capsules are the perfect skin-detox regimen for those who suffer the effects of pollution and lifestyle choices. Apply the contents of one pink Rose capsule in the morning (left) and one green Lavender capsule at night (right). Follow with moisturiser"

Elemis has pledged to donate £10,000 to Breast Cancer Care in the UK, and by purchasing THE HERO COLLECTION, you can help them achieve that goal, while also achieving total face & body nourishment for less! 

You can get your very own HERO COLLECTION at Mandara Spa, The Magellan Sutera Harbour for only RM383nett (actual worth per set RM661), but only until the end of this month (September 2016). I have just started using mine, but with my previous experience with Elemis products, I already know it’s gonna be great =D

Support your skin, support each other,
Calista xx

*Photos by OneWingedAngel168

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Unmissable Tips To Visit Beautiful Malaysia On A Budget

A lot of people are choosing to come to Malaysia for their next holiday, and I'm not surprised; there is so much to see and do that makes it an unforgettable holiday! However, it’s not always the cheapest country in the world, and if you are strapped for cash, it might put you off going. Don't fret! Here are some unmissable tips to visit beautiful Malaysia on a budget and still have a very good time.

Malaysia, Tea Plantation, Travel, Cameron Highlands
Fly cheaply and make stops
You can fly many different airlines to visit Malaysia, including Air Asia and Malaysia Airlines. If you want to travel cheaply, you should keep an eye out to see when these airlines have deals on. As this article explains, if you set up for flight alerts, they will let you know about deals that will save you a whole lotta money. Also, the day and date you go will make a big difference to the price, therefore try to depart on weekdays when fewer seats will be booked, and if you are travelling from very far away, you should choose a flight which has one or two stops if you want to make it cheaper. You might get to stop somewhere great to look around and it can make the cost a lot less!

Visit the less well-known areas
A lot of people head to Borneo and the capital city Kuala Lumpur when they are visiting Malaysia, and it's easy to see why! But don't forget you can also head to a smaller city such as Kota Bharu to experience a different side of Malaysia (you can see more on my previous blog). The prices of hotels and food are a lot more cost-effective if you are on a budget.

Image result for Kota Bharu

Stay in a budget hotel
You can also save money on your trip to Malaysia by looking for budget-friendly hotels. After all, you are going to be looking around the area, not to be just sitting in your hotel room. It doesn’t need to be five star resort to have a great trip, however, make sure you do read the reviews before you book so that you know it’s clean and safe. You can look online to explore budget hotels in Malaysia that will be great to stay in. Also, you can save some money on your hotel price by booking out of high-season. You will get a lower price and will have more to spend on the rest of your trip.

Use public transport
A lot of people are put off using public transport in a different place. After all, you might not speak the language and could easily get lost. However, it will save you a lot of money if you do use the bus and train during your visit. As this article says, the local subways and bus services are quite easy to get around, so you will hopefully not get lost during your visit!

Also, make sure you buy food from the street stalls instead of restaurants if you want to save some cash. You will find some excellent food on the stalls that will often be a lot nicer than in the expensive restaurants!

A special Malaysia post will be coming up soon, especially for Malaysia Day month, so make sure you follow this blog!

Love always,
Calista xx

*This post is contributed.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Fascinating Finland: An Exhilarating Nordic Experience

Finland may have a modern, cosmopolitan capital but most of the destination remains untouched. It has a gloriously other-worldly feel about it and a natural landscape that is truly breathtaking. Visiting in summer and winter offer two vastly different experiences. From Helsinki to Finnish Lapland you’ll experience a country of wild and beautiful contrasts. Are you ready for an exhilarating Nordic Experience?

Picture source: Pixaby

Finland In The Winter
Visit Finland in winter for snow-white landscapes, magical dark days and numerous icy activities. In northernmost Finland the sun doesn’t rise for nearly a month, adding to this out-of-this-world experience. The Finns call this period Kaamos. However, by mid-April, there are up to 16 hours of sun a day. In winter you can enjoy everything from cross-country skiing to snowshoeing and husky sledding to sleigh riding. Head to Finnish Lapland for the ultimate Nordic winter experience. Here in the wilderness, you’ll see how the nomadic Sami people live and get to witness reindeer in their natural habitat. If you’ve got kids, Santa Claus also happens to be available all year round at his home here! If you want snow, head to northern or eastern Finland in the winter. Here you can experience ice fishing, snowmobiling and snowboarding. And no winter trip would be complete without experiencing a traditional Finnish sauna. The best Finnish sauna experience ends with a plunge into an icy lake to cool off, and then sausages for dinner! You can stay in an ice hotel, an igloo or a log cabin and spend your nights trying to chase the spectacular Northern Lights. Winter in Finland is all about enjoying the outdoors. So wrap up warm and get ready to appreciate the beauty of ice, snow and crisp, fresh air as you enjoy myriad of exhilarating adventures.

Picture source: Pixaby

Finland In the Summer
Finland in summer brings the feeling of endless sunny days. In July and August, the sun doesn’t set. Hence why it is known as the Land of the Midnight Sun. And the Finns certainly know how to celebrate! The spellbinding natural landscape means that summer celebrates all sorts of outdoor activity. You can swim in the lakes, go cycling across mountain roads, canoe and kayak, and enjoy forest walks and Nordic hiking. Experiencing the Midnight Sun is also one to add to the bucket list. Imagine seeing a day that never seems to end. Finland in the summer brings to life the beautiful wildlife and flowers that lay hidden in the nine months of winter. If you love nature, summer in Finland is perfect for exploring. And if you love fruit picking there is nowhere better to go! The forest floors are covered in all sorts of wild berries; from blueberries to cranberries and bilberries to lingonberries. It’s a great place to take children on a day of foraging. As Finland is known as a winter destination, summer is particularly quiet. For its serenity and calming nature, it also makes for a great escape if you are thinking about a babymoon, as you can do as little or as much as you want. If you love hiking, strolling, cycling and nature, and you want somewhere isolated and serene, Finland is the place to be in the summer months.

*This post is contributed.

Friday, 2 September 2016

#hitzEscape: Roaring Taiwan

I've never met anyone who's been to Taiwan and didn't fall in love it.

Personally, I've been to Taiwan twice: Once on a family trip to Taipei, and once on an Air Asia Fam trip for a leisure farming tour. I definitely wouldn't mind going again!

Taiwan is such a beautiful country, amplified by the fact that the people are so friendly and nice, not to mention there's so much to see, do and eat!
"Best thing about traveling is not always about what I will gain or how many selfie I will make. It's what I can afford to share with others and that will forever capture their hearts for my presence. Travel. Live. Love with tigerAir." - Jason.
Hitz fm Sabah & Tiger Air is sending one lucky winner plus a friend on a round trip to Taiwan with #hitzTigerAir, so this post is of course dedicated to helping them get the most out of the trip!

Night markets: With over 100 night markets all over Taiwan, it's no wonder they're the highlight of almost everyone's trip!  From clothes, food, fresh fruit, to street performers, the variety is so wide it is definitely possible to get everything you want, and if you can't find what you're looking for? Well, just try the next one! Tristan suggests checking out Shilin and Raohe.

Food: What's a place without good food? Taiwan is known for their street food, and Charlotte says the sausages and breakfast pancakes - little roti canais with meat, vege and sauce that is divine - are a must-try! Gin loves the mee sua (oyster noodles) and o jian (oyster omelette), and I personally really loved the rice balls you can get at almost every 7-11 and the beef noodles.

Sightseeing: Oliver's favourite place in Taiwan is Mao Kong Mountain, where you can ride a gondola up to the temple in the sky. It really is a beautiful and peaceful place, with a quaint lil village there too! An obvious landmark to visit would be Taipei 101, the highest tower in Taiwan. If you're exploring the city by rail, you can also collect stamps (as in rubber stamp prints) in a little booklet at various hotspots in Taipei! It's fun, a cool momento, and helps you make sure you've seen everything haha.

Been to Taipei one too many times? Check out the farmstays! Sounds weird, but so much fun. No actual farming is necessary - just pick a location in Taiwan, stay on a farm, walk through 100 year old pine trees, breathe in fresh air, watch the sunrise, or whatever else that particular leisure farm has to offer! Trust me, it's so relaxing and beautiful, and such a different experience from the norm, you'll be dying to go back!

Festivals: Chinese New Year is an experience in itself, but the Ping Xi Lantern festival, which is held every CNY, is something else altogether. 1000s of lanterns carrying personal wishes are released simultaneously into the sky, creating a beautiful landscape like no other. Deriving from over 100 years of history, this one constantly tops the list of must see festivals.

And finally, the people: The Taiwanese are so hospitable, friendly and genuine; and that is what keeps people going back for more. Everyone is so polite and eager to help, and so nice and generous! Abby actually fractured her leg before her trip, and because she was using crutches, she got so much free stuff and discounts hahaha.

Taiwan is definitely one of my favourite countries to visit, and I know you'll have a great time there too. Know any more tips? Drop me a comment!

Don't forget to follow me on Instagram @CalistaLeahLiew & Snapchat @CalistaLeah;
And join me on the hitz Playlist every weekday 10am - 1pm on 
hitz fm Sabah 100.8 in Kota Kinabalu & 99.8 in Sandakan! 
*Daily #hitzEscape tips at 12pm

Love always,
Calista xx

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Planning to Get Married Abroad? Your Essential Checklist

If you and your fiance love to travel, then you might consider getting married abroad for your wedding. It is a great way to celebrate your union, as well as being in a truly beautiful setting. You might consider a country that you both love, or even somewhere that neither of you has been to before. It can also double up as a honeymoon destination. So it works well for that reason too. Wherever you decide it will be, there is a lot to plan and organize; perhaps more than any other kind of wedding. So here are some essential things to remember. Then your wedding planning can run smoothly and be as stress-free as possible.


Pretty much after you get engaged, you need to be thinking about where you would like to get married. It is a good idea to narrow it down to perhaps two or three locations. Then the next step is to do some research into the legalities of getting married in those locations. There might be certain costs for licenses involved, so it all needs to be taken into account. Do you need to be in the country at least a week before the wedding date, so that you can sort things out? All of this needs to be checked so that it will all run smoothly for you.

The next thing to think about is the budget that is available. Then it might help to determine exactly where it will be. You can still get married abroad on a budget. It could just be on a beautiful beach somewhere, rather than a luxurious hotel or resort. So don’t panic if there is less in the budget that you thought there would be.


Once those decisions have been made, you need to know who will be coming. Knowing the number of guests helps you to narrow down the finer details like location specifics and things like catering. So one of the best things to do is to send out some save the date cards. You can gauge interest and make some plans from there. You could get some save the date cards from Pure Invitation online, or you could even make them yourself. Once those kinds of details have been organized, you can arrange things at the location. Will you want everyone to stay in the same hotel or just close by? Sending out details about flights and the destination to your guests will make it much easier for them to attend. It might even be a good idea to send them a reminder to check the date on their passports; as well as checking the expiry date on yours! If it needs to be renewed, then get it done as soon as possible.

Getting wedding and travel insurance are good ideas when you are planning a wedding abroad. You don’t want to be left with large bills, should anything untoward end up happening. If there is a contact at your wedding location, then make sure you keep in touch with them regularly. Be clear and specific about what you would like. Explain your expectations and what you want to do when you arrive in the country. Then your contact can make sure that they are around to help you out.


Once the major issues of getting married abroad are in place, then you can get the ‘regular’ wedding planning sorted out. So think about the wedding dress, bridesmaids, and groomsmen. It is much harder to rent these kinds of things when you are abroad, as it will mean renting out for quite a while. So it might be easier to buy these outfits to take with you. Consider the climate of the country that you are going to and choose the outfits accordingly. You should bear in mind how you will do your makeup and hair on the day too. Will you seek out a local person and hope for the best? Or perhaps you and a bridesmaid could have some practices before you fly. Then you can just do it yourself on the day. Make sure you take all of the equipment and makeup you need with you, as well as things like power adapters. Then you can recreate the look easily.

Then the last things to do are in the couple of weeks before you fly. Make sure that all your holiday essentials are packed, like suncream and travel clothes. Pack anything else that you might need for the wedding too, like a handheld steamer for the dress, for example. Good luck and enjoy planning your wedding!

*This post is contributed

Saturday, 27 August 2016

If You Love To Travel, Check Out These Apps

If you are anything like me, you love your apps. Especially if they help you make the most of your holidays. There are lot of great new travel apps on the market. But there are some specific ones that you just cannot do without if you are planning a trip aboard any time soon. Read on for some top picks.


Media apps
First of all long journeys can be boring, even if there is something exciting at the end of them to look forward. That's why it’s handy to always have an entertainment app at hand. You can get e- reading apps to catch up with that latest romance novel during a bus ride. Or how about a movie streaming app like ShowBox App Download - Free Movies App so that car journey isn't so boring when you're not driving?

If you are doing a city tour, why not download an audiobook through an app like audible that is set in the country for the city that you are in. It can help you get into the swing of things. Just remember to keep one earphone out, and your wits about you if you are in a strange place.

Google Maps
Of course, anyone from a seasoned traveler to an occasional holiday maker knows that map apps like the one from Google are essential. In many areas, you can get the time of public transport through these apps, as well as being able to pinpoint exactly where you are.

A useful feature that some have, that is particularly clever, is that you can get audio directions through your headphones. Then you can explore a new city at your ease, without worrying that you look too much like a lost tourist.

Taxi Apps
Another way to prevent highlighting yourself as a non local is by using taxi apps such as Uber. Then you can travel around your chosen location with ease and cut out the need for public transport altogether.  

Google Translate
Another app that you can’t do without on your adventures is one that will translate what people are saying to you. You can try one such as I translate or Google Translate. It is so helpful, especially if you are traveling alone to be able to get the gist of a menu or what a hotel reception clerk is telling you.

Jet Lag Apps
Lastly if you are a fan of long-haul trips, then you probably know all about the perils of jet lag. Cause by crossing a time zone, jet lag is when your body stays on ‘the clock’ of the previous area that you are in. This mean you want to sleep in the middle of the day and wake up at night!

Luckily, there are now even apps to help you overcome your jet lag as quick as possible. Apps like Jet Lag Rooster help you to close the gap between the previous time zone and the one you are in now. They do this by coming up with a sleep plan to get you into the new time zones’ pattern. So even if you can't get rid of it completely, you can minimize jet lag and the impact that it has on your trip.  

*This post is contributed.