Traveling is one of the best activities in life, that’s why we prepared you a list of the best travel tips.
Regardless of where you live, if you have some money and do some careful planning, you can enjoy a trip like no other.
Most people are not born travelers. Some things come with experience. Your rides get safer and more enjoyable as you understand and learn more things.
So to say you have to get on-the-road experience. In the beginning, it’s normal to make a lot of mistakes, but this is why we are here.
We are going to ease things up for you. Those pieces of advice come from a place of missed buses, cultural unawareness, and overall not paying attention.
Then, one day, just like us, you will start to move seamlessly through all kinds of busy environments such as airports, and you will be able to integrate into new cultures easily.
So, without further ado, we will present to you a list of the best travel tips possible. We hope that after reading this, you will become a better traveler.
1. Always pack a towel!
It does not matter where you are going. Things can get wet or sweaty really fast. We put this under the “common sense” section.
Also, there are lots of places where a towel is basically mandatory. For example, at the beach or at a picnic. We know that most hostels offer towels, but you never know when you will need one on the go.
2. Get a small backpack or a suitcase.
This is for the times where you are going on lighter trips. Even if you have bigger baggage at the place you rented, you will not be able to move into the town or out in the wilderness with that huge luggage. So, remember to add a small backpack or bag that can easily be carried with you everywhere.
3. Travel light!
Yes, you need some stuff for the long run, but make sure to optimize everything so that you are as free as possible. That is from weight and from stress as well.
You can wear the same t-shirt for a few days. Just take the essentials, and that is it. Why would you pack things up like you are going to stay there for months?
4. Make sure you got extra money.
You never know when you might lose a sum of it or even all of it. This is why you should have access to some extra money.
It could be via a bank card or even through an online method. You just have to be able to access it in some way or another.
Think about being stuck in a foreign place where things did not work out so well, and you have absolutely no money. That is a complete nightmare.
If you travel in a group, let everybody know that this is an important part. You do not want them to be constantly borrowing money from you or vice versa.
5. Make sure your bank cards have low fees or no fees
You do not want to spend 10-20% on your money on bank fees when you get money out of an ATM. Also, you do not want to pay foreign taxes when buying from vendors as well. Have a detailed talk with the people at your bank and see how you can deal with this.
6. Do not be afraid of traveling alone.
In fact, this experience is a necessary one and will help you develop in life. You will learn a lot about yourself and how to become independent. We know that it might sound like a cliché, but it is still true.
You will learn how to better fend for yourself and get through tough or unfamiliar situations with ease.
Think about how you will feel when you go back home. It will be like you managed to conquer something big, and you did it all by yourself.
7. Physical maps are your friends, not your enemies.
If you learn to use them, they could possibly save your life in the literal sense. We know that digital maps are more efficient in many ways, but once the battery of the said gadget dies, the map goes away with it.
With physical maps, you do not have to worry about how much longer you can use them. They will stick with you through thick and thin.
8. Sometimes you could try to get lost on purpose.
We know how that sounds, but you will push your limits and learn new things this way. You might also be surprised by what kind of peculiar gems you might find.
9. Give the local tourism office a chance.
They know everything interesting that goes on in the town, and they can give free advice in regards to activities, special events, concerts, and so on. They can even offer discounts on attractions and transportation. If you learn to use this resource every time, you will get a lot more bang for your buck.
10. Money belts could be more dangerous than safe.
They basically scream, “Hey, look at me! I am a tourist, and I got money on me!”. So, in this regard, they will be more dangerous for you. Try to blend in, and statistically, your chances of being targeted for robbery will drop dramatically. A thief will always prefer a tourist-target as opposed to a resident.
11. When you go out, only take the must-haves with you.
There is no need to take all the expensive gadgets and a lot of cash on you. Take only one credit card and enough cash to get you through the night.
Set a limit on your spending as well. Say something around $50 per night sounds fine, but you could adjust it depending on your budget.
12. A lock might prove to be useful.
This is especially true if you will sleep in dorm rooms and hostels. You will want to lock your door in order to secure all the stuff you have back there.
Choose a model with a numeric code. This way, you will not have to carry keys and will not be exposed to the risk of losing them.
13. Make copies of all of your important documents.
Here we are talking about passport and driving license. Do not forget to get them in digital form as well. E-mail them to yourself or keep them on an online storage platform. This will ensure access to them regardless of where you will find yourself.
14. Learn a few basic phrases in the native language of the place you are going to visit.
You do not have to go in-depth with this, but it will make your interactions a lot easier. Learn the basics such as “Hello”, “Goodbye’, “Thank you”, “Where is…”, “Please, give me…”, and so on.
15. Maybe try reading a history book about your destination.
This might give you new perspectives about your destination and could also save you from making cultural mistakes.
You do not want to embarrass yourself in front of people abroad by insulting their beliefs, so study just a little to avoid this kind of experience.
16. McDonald’s and Starbucks might feel like a home far away from home.
They look almost the same everywhere, and they absolutely taste the same. Sometimes, familiarity will give you a lot of comfort. Also, remember that they always have free wi-fi in every one of their places.
17. It might be cheaper to fly to nearby locations in the city you want to visit.
For example, instead of flying directly to the city airport, you could fly to a nearby location, albeit rural, and take a bus or a train to your final destination.
This little detour could save you hundreds of dollars or euros, and might even give you some touristic sights.
18. Avoid being behind families when waiting in a queue.
It’s not their fault. They have lots of things with them and probably kids as well. So, if possible, chose another queue.
19. Avoid spending in central tourist attraction areas.
Usually, in these places, everything sold is a lot cheaper. For example, if you want to eat, walk a few blocks away from the said place and then look around for a restaurant. The food will be a lot cheaper as compared to the epicenter of a cultural area.
Also, try to avoid regular eating and visiting hours. Eat when most people wouldn’t and visit in the same manner. This way, you will avoid crowds.
20. When taking a taxi, you should always ask the price beforehand.
It’s really hard to get to know the accurate price, but you can at least think for yourself if the price offered suits well, with the circumstances.
21. Get travel insurance!
This one is extremely important. Unfortunate things can happen during trips as well. You do not want to spend thousands of dollars out of your pockets when something bad happens. You could have medical issues or be caught in a natural disaster.
Sometimes, you might even have to be expatriated back to your home for one reason or another. Travel insurance costs just a few dollars beforehand but can make your life a whole lot safer. It will keep your loved ones at ease as well.
We actually have an article about What does Travel Insurance cover if you want to check it out.
Now, you have all these well-thought bits of advice under your belt. We hope that they will make your trip better and help you in all kinds of situations.
If you follow them well, they will also help you save a ton of money. So have fun and bon voyage!