Genealogy: Travel checklist for your genealogy trip

Genealogy: Travel checklist for your genealogy trip By Barry J. Ewell

It would be nice to simply walk into a library and find what you want and you are done.   Experience has taught me that I am to expect the unexpected.  The list may seem exhaustive but it is designed to help review your own needs and choose those items you desire to take to make the research trip as effective as possible.

Trust me, there is nothing more frustrating then having traveled a long distance and not have what you need to complete the research. I remember once having a camera battery go dead and there was no store in town that carried the battery I needed.   Due Continue reading

Genealogy: Travel checklist—Optional bring-alongs

Genealogy: Travel checklist—Optional bring-alongsMBy Barry J. Ewell

The following is a suggested packing list that I have use in my travels.   It’s foundation is from Rick Steves, a well known travel host for PBS.  I have found Rick Steves’ council and ideas to be on target and well thought out.

The list will vary somewhat if you are going to U.S. destinations versus other countries, usually Europe.  Pack light and only what you need.  You will be grateful each and every day of your trip with lighter luggage. Continue reading

Genealogy: Extended research trip #1—The 50-50 rule

Genealogy: Extended research trip #1—The 50-50 ruleBy Barry J. Ewell

The best counsel anyone gave me about planning a genealogy trip was: “Plan 50 percent of your trip before you go. Plan the other 50 percent when you get there.”

It’s important to know where you will be each day of your trip, but don’t plan it so tightly that you can’t take advantage of opportunities to do things that interest you. If you are going to be doing research in libraries and archives while on your trip, a rule of thumb that many genealogists have stated was to allow one day of research for every three Continue reading

Genealogy: Extended research trip #7—Plan to have a base of operations

Genealogy: Extended research trip #7—Plan to have a base of operationsBy Barry J. Ewell

If you have done any level of travel you have learned that not every town has the same level or type of services to accommodate your desired expectations. I usually try to identify a base of operations if I am going to be in a specific area for two or more days. It simplifies the need of packing and unpacking, checking in and checking out. During my first trip, I spent most evenings trying to find a hotel that I could afford or had vacancies. At the end of a long day of research, you just want a place to sleep. Now, I don’t waste my time trying to find a place to eat and become familiar with where the basics such as gas stations, transportation hubs, ATMs, copy centers, and so on are located.

Genealogy: Extended research trip #8—Start scheduling reservations for your trip 3-4 months in advance.

Genealogy: Extended research trip #8—Start scheduling reservations for your trip 3-4 months in advance.By Barry J. Ewell

Preparing for a genealogy trip requires several months of preparation and planning. Book your first and last night bed and breakfast, hotel room, guest house, or other accommodations from your home country before you leave for your trip. The last thing you want to do when you land is to scramble for a place to stay.

Whether working with a travel agent or contacting persons directly, make reservations at least 2-3 months before departure to book a room and give a deposit, if necessary. Continue reading

Genealogy: Travel checklist— Packing list for women

Genealogy: Travel checklist— Packing list for women By Barry J. Ewell

The following is a suggested packing list that I have use in my travels.   It’s foundation is from Rick Steves, a well known travel host for PBS.  I have found Rick Steves’ council and ideas to be on target and well thought out.

The list will vary somewhat if you are going to U.S. destinations versus other countries, usually Europe.  Pack light and only what you need.  You will be grateful each and every day of your trip with lighter luggage. Continue reading