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Jetsetter Gypsy offers chic traveling advice

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Jetsetter Gypsy offers chic traveling advice

By Alicia McElhaney

McClatchy-Tribune

(MCT)

Traveling abroad is supposed to be sexy, glamorous and chic. But all too often, a traveler’s expectations fall flat when she falls into tourist traps and lands back into her comfort zone.

Cue Amy Jarczynski, and her blog and brand, Jetsetter Gypsy ( www.jetsettergypsy.com ), to save the day.

Jarczynski, an avid traveler, provides recommendations on local hotspots and hotels, gives advice about whirlwind romances abroad, reminds readers of ways to stay chic while traveling and, above all, acts as a storyteller on her blog.

While Jarczynski has been blogging for almost a year and a half, she is just now launching her brand, Jetsetter Gypsy, which promises to include more travel advice and anecdotes online, and eventually, as Jarczynski hopes, turn into a book and speaking engagements for her at travel-related events.

“Essentially, Jetsetter Gypsy is more than a blog. I wanted to take my knowledge of frequent travel and create chic recommendations for going abroad,” Jarczynski said.

Jarczynski, a bubbly, intelligent woman with a knack for marketing and languages (not surprising for a world traveler), has always enjoyed traveling. She fell in love with travel when she studied abroad in Spain after her freshman year of college at Florida State University.

“That was when the travel bug really hit me,” Jarczynski said.

Since her first time abroad, Jarczynski leads a busy life. She now works as a consultant for www.theknot.com and splits her home between the Washington, D.C., and Barcelona, Spain. When she is not at one of her homes or working, Jarczynski spends a lot of time traveling.

“My traveling is about 30 to 35 percent of my time,” she said.

Her favorite places to visit? Thailand, Istanbul and Tulum, Mexico. Jarczynski explained that her experiences made these places her favorites, rather than the other way around.

When she is abroad, Jarczynski makes sure to visit the major tourist attractions but tries to spend most of her time meeting others and enjoying local food and wine.

“I love meeting people. I actually met my boyfriend waiting for a taxi in Bangkok,” Jarczynski said.

After several years of experience traveling, Jarczynski was full of stories that had many family members and friends dying to hear more.

“I just had these crazy experiences. I didn’t want it to be all about me when I was with my family, though, so I started a blog for them to read about it,” Jarczynski said.

As Jetsetter Gypsy grows, Jarczynski plans to continue her travels as she always has — she is visiting Portugal before returning to Barcelona next month.

Jarczynski’s life of travel is an enviable one, but it does require a lot of maintenance and deliberate living.

“I have a special kind of life,” Jarczynski said. Because of that, she has a special kind of advice, all about staying chic and traveling abroad.

On traveling easily:

—“The hardest thing about traveling all the time is keeping in shape and staying healthy,” Jarczynski said. She advised travelers to have a routine of working out and eating well when they are home, and to be sure to stick to it.

—Drink a lot of water. “This helps you to always stay refreshed. Not to mention, it keeps skin youthful,” Jarczynski said.

—“Be part of alliances, loyalty and member programs,” Jarczynski advises. These programs can save a lot of money, allowing travelers to skip the crusty hostel and check into chicer digs.

On staying fashionable:

—Packing fast is a huge time saver, which is important to Jarczynski. She keeps a second set of toiletries packed in a cosmetic bag to be ready at a moment’s notice.

—Stock up on beauty products before you go, save for the shampoo and conditioner. Jarczynski always uses hotel shampoo and conditioner, but she remembers to take along extras of her favorite products, just in case she cannot find them when she is away.

—Always pack nail polish, Jarczynski advised. Switching up colors is an easy way to accessorize.

—Pack more items made of silk and linen — they take up less space. Ditto goes for skirts and dresses, according to Jarczynski.

On romance abroad:

—“Always be smart about what you’re doing. Be smart with your heart as well,” Jarczynski said. “Things aren’t always going to work out when you return home, so it’s nice not to get too hopeful.”

—If you see someone you would like to speak to, speak to him or her, Jarczynski advised. Chances are you won’t see them again.

—Always pack a little lingerie, Jarczynski said. “You never know when you may need it, and it takes up less space in your luggage than pajamas.”

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©2013 McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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Jetsetter Gypsy offers chic traveling advice