Travel Blog

Is traveling to Mexico safe? I just returned from a wonderful one week trip to Cancun, Mexico. I go there every January with some of my girl friends. We go to de-stress and love the warm temperatures in January! We mostly stayed at our resort, Dreams Sands Cancun, where we have been three times before this trip. We do love the resort, as we also know what is where, and don't have to relearn everything. On Sunday we (one of my friends and I) took the shuttle bus into the city of Cancun, to the ADO bus station, bought a ticket to Playa del Carmen, boarded the big bus and went on our way. Going by taxi would have been much more expensive (did that once), and this way, transportation round trip was only about $10.... We felt totally safe on the trip! You see, I have a good friend and her family living in Playa del Carmen. She is originally from Germany, just like me, and I have known her and her family since before she was born (her mom and I were pen pals since we were about 12 years old)! Needless to say, I see her more than she sees her own parents - because of the distance we all need to travel.... It is so much fun to visit her family - she has a wonderful husband and two little boys, and since we always go in the first part of January, we have a suitcase full of presents for them all! Christmas all over!!!! The reason I am posting this, is to let everyone know that it is safe to travel with public transportation in the tourist areas of Mexico. I may not be fluent in their language (and no, I am NOT), but I never had the feeling that I was not safe! Once we arrived at the Playa del Carmen bus station, we texted my friend, and she came to pick us up and take us to her home. Again, we did not feel like we were not safe at all! I am so glad we spent this day in Playa! The only advice I would give in addition to this is that when traveling anywhere, it is important that we are aware of our surroundings, and perhaps even know where we are going. That is the basis for a wonderful vacation...

Real ID in October 2020

I am sure we all have heard that starting in October 2020, we will nee Real ID in order to board domestic flights or visit Federal institutions. There is some confusion about this, let me clear it up...

If you need to renew your drivers license before then, you can ask for it to be a Real ID license, but you will have to prepare for that:


Here is something from the Illinois Secretary of State website:

You will need: Proof of Identity, Date of Birth, and US Citizenship or Lawful Status (permanent resident card, or visa in foreign passport)

Whenever you have had a name change, you will need proof of that (marriage certificat for example)

Social Security Card or W2

Provide proof of residency, 2 documents are needed here (for example bank statement and cancelled check)

Document with a written signature (passport, drivers license).


If you have a valid passport, you need NOT have the Real ID, as long as you will always travel with your passport, even on domestic flights. You can also always enter a Federal institution with your passport.






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