My favourite thing about Travel Tuesday is having a location where like minded bloggers and readers can meet to share our passion of travel. The best part for having that camaraderie across an online forum is you get a global view from many different perspectives. I will share with you my most favourite travel tips that I have picked up from my travels around the world.
BEFORE YOU LEAVE
- Research the Airport. You would be surprised how many people just rely on what they find instead of doing some research ahead of time. Especially if you are traveling with children knowing what is available in the airport ahead of time can help pass the time between flights or if you end up being delayed for a period of time.
- Learn to take a good photo. The best part of going on vacation is coming home and looking through your photographs. Most cameras have manual mode and if you do not know how to use it really well you may not be taking the best photos you can. Take an online photography course with me and learn how to get a properly exposed photograph without missing your shot. Also remember to take photographs of the location as well as of yourself in them. Too much of either and you will be missing the complete documentation of your trip.
- Scan copies of your passport. Also any important documents you will have on you and email copies to your family. This is preventative in case you lose your passport or in the worst case scenario, something bad happens to you while you are traveling. Make sure someone you trust knows where you are and a basic itinerary of your travels.
- Pack Smartly. Have a change of clothes with your toiletries in your carry on in case you end up with out your luggage when you arrive or if needed in transit. Packing light is also a good rule of thumb for you might end up having to rush somewhere with your luggage without transport. Things happen that you cannot control and if you cannot carry your own luggage very far on your own, you should rethink what you are bringing with you. Rolling clothes and using ziplock bags (with the air pressed out) is a great tip to packing smartly and keeping organized in one go.
IN THE COUNTRY
- Know the local customs and rules. It is so important that you know law of the land while in the country you are visiting. For example if you spit out your chewing gum onto the pavement in Singpore you will be fined. Also are important are the local customs as in the Thai greeting called a ‘wai’ while visiting Thailand. These will help you not only stay out of trouble but show respect to the host country.
- Have a paper map. While I agree it is nice to have everything on our phones, you will be out of luck if your phone runs out of battery. Especially in areas where having your phone out could lead to risk of having it stolen, have a paper map back up to use when needed.
* Anything important you have on your phone (ie. the directions to your hotel) should also be hand written for the same ‘just in case’ scenario.
- Know the language. Perhaps you are not fluent, but you can know some of the basic phrases and words to help you out on your travels. Know how to say: please, thank you, you’re welcome, yes, no, etc. Having a language book handy is also useful. Just be aware if you are out in certain areas with a language book how it will appear so that you do not risk drawing unneeded attention.
- Carry baby wipes. They can come in handy for multiple situations while traveling especially if you end up somewhere without toilet paper. Carrying paper tissues is also another good tip. You can use the baby wipes as well if you run into not being able to take a shower, need to wash your hands, or for spot cleaning your clothes.
- Haggle and be firm. Haggling for a lower price is normal in many countries you may travel too. Be polite and have have fun learning the art of how to haggle. You should also know how to be firm in certain situations. Be okay with saying ‘no’ and sticking to it when approached by persistent street vendors in various touristy cities in Europe. You do not have to give in. Also know taxi prices and check the meter so that you do not get taken advantage of and end up paying more. When in Thailand my mum and I ended up with a very angry taxi driver because we would not go to his friend’s shop (he gets a commission) and ended up finally being dropped off. Be clear about where you want to go and remember you can say no to intimidation.
- Ask the Locals. From places to see to where to eat, I love to find out the best things to do in a city by asking the locals. Try to stay away from any places to eat that are in close proximity to any tourist traps. They will be geared to the tourist’s palette and also be higher in price.
- Know where your Embassy is located. You can research this before you leave and then make sure you can find it when in the country. You may never have to use it when you travel but it is always good to be safe in case of an emergency.
My favourite post from last week was from Bell Bliss: Riding Elephants in Chiang Mai, Thailand. I loved my time in Thailand and especially in Chiang Mai and so reliving those memories through her blog have been really enjoyable. While I did get to ride elephants, I did not get to go on the cool elephant trek that she did and have definitely added that to my future Thailand trip list. What an amazing adventure to have and I recommend you check it out!
Do not forget to head over to my co-hosts blogs, Melanie and Tina and leave some comment love on their Travel Tuesday posts today. You can see who they picked to feature from last week’s link up too! Plus share your travel stories and wanderlust addictions with us all in the link up below!
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