If you don’t travel frequently you are going to need the best travel tips from the pros for when you do take a trip. As much as we may be used to zipping around in our cars, we will need some super travel ideas from those in the know when it comes to catching flights in foreign countries, negotiating the maze of hotels and handling the local customs and culture. If you are looking for top travel advice, here are 20 Best Travel Tips from Frequent Travelers.
1. Always Have a Backup Plan
One of the biggest stresses for travelers is the fact that things don’t always go according to plan. Flights get cancelled and delayed, luggage gets lost and connecting flights and travel plans are turned upside down in a heartbeat. Don’t muck about, get on the phone and get hold of a booking agent, reroute your flights, make the necessary arrangements and stay away from the long queues of stressed travelers waiting at the customer service desk trying to find out what’s happening.
2. Keep Your Wits about You
Ah, stress and traveling - the two tend to go hand in hand no matter how cool, calm and collected you may be. According to the expert travel advice from those who are constantly on the move, the golden rule of surviving any sort of travel is to breathe, count to 100 if necessary and stay as calm as possible. Getting stressed clouds your logical thinking and a temporary hiccup can end up being a disaster if you panic.
3. Trust Your Instincts
Another of the golden rules of travel – if it seems too good to be true it most certainly is. Your gut instinct will never ever let you down. Dodgy vehicles, creepy taxi drivers and uneasy money changing schemes are in every country in the world, and they can see a tourist from a mile away. Pre Book your hotel and airport transfer with your accommodation and don’t try and cut corners when you don’t know where you are.
4. Do Your Homework
Spontaneity is very cathartic, good for the soul and one’s self esteem, but when you arrive at a place and have to spend hours running around like a headless chicken because you don’t know where you are or what you are doing or at the very least where you think you want to go, it could be a fantastic opportunity that is wasted. Read up and find out and when you get there ask the locals.
5. Plastic Vs Cash
At the end of the day you may very well need some cash in the local currency, but if your belongings are stolen, you can stop cards immediately and replace them, but any cash you have will be gone forever. One of the travel tips from the experts is to use your card as much as possible instead of withdrawing money. You will be able to track your expenditure, and be able to safeguard your finances if a frisky pick pocket makes you their target.
6. Know when to Splurge
Most people travel on a budget and try to save money where ever possible in order to squeeze the most out of their trip, and do things like take trains and busses instead of taxis. But really at the end of the day, if you have to spend a bit more for a good night’s sleep or extra leg room on a long haul flight, you will feel so much better. Advice from frequent travelers is that a little bit of extra cash spent and cramped accommodation and uncomfortable traveling won’t put a damper on your vacation.
7. The Mini Bar
The mini bar is notorious for being one of the biggest money traps on the planet, and hotels have become terribly efficient at getting their money’s worth. If need to store medication or other traveling items in a fridge be careful about using the mini bar. They are rigged with sensors that scan and charge you money the minute an item is lifted from the shelf, even if you put it there.
8. Pack Smart
One of the most commonly touted and best travel tips is about packing. Your travel mantra should be ‘’Pack light or Travel Heavy’’ and this is something that you will breathe a sigh of relief when you are hopping on and off trains and planes with just a backpack. Even if you are travelling for more than a week – ladies this means you – everything you need can fit in a backpack. Most hotels have a laundry service, make use of them.
9. Jet Lag is Real
Enthusiasm when planning your trip is not enough to get you by when you land ready to crash and burn, when you have already made all these arrangements to go out for dinner and socialize with friends. If you are landing in the morning, sleep on the plane as much as possible. If you are landing in the evening, prop those eyes up and stay awake to land and crawl into bed on the other side. Take rest seriously. Check out these tips for dealing with jet lag travel.allwomenstalk.com
10. Online Check in
Modern technology is amazing; not only can you check in online beforehand, you can pick your seats and do so, some 24 hours in advance. Print out your tickets and boarding passes before hand and save yourself time and headaches. Breeze into the airport, and chill with a nice cup of coffee in the lounge before you board.
11. Double up on Knickers
If you think you may only need a week’s supply of underwear, always pack more than you think you will need. Otherwise you may find yourself in a situation where you have to buy underwear and which may end up being an expensive little outing with plenty of scope for embarrassment.
12. The First Aid Kit
As well as providing best travel tips on what not to pack, regular travelers are hot on what you should take. This includes a small first aid kit staples with you just in case. Things like plasters, headache tablets, anti-nausea tablets and an emergency diarrhea medication will take you very far, especially if you are in transit or on a boat far away from civilization.
A point and shoot is not only handy for all those Facebook snaps, it can help you if you are in a foreign country and can’t speak the language. Take a picture of medication you need to buy or food you want to eat, and if you have a language barrier you can whip out the photo which will help you on your way.
14. Google Maps
Google maps are great, you can access them anywhere even on your mobile phone. Some phones ever have apps to help you access them offline. Download maps of where you are going, email them to your phone, handheld or iPad, and you can carry a virtual copy of where you are and where you are going with you, everywhere.
15. Your Best Traveling Friends
One of the most sensible pieces of travel advice from regular travelers is to make use of local knowledge. The people who know the most, have the best connections and the most comprehensive insider knowledge will be your valet and or doorman. They have the best connections for travel transfers, drivers and the like. They could probably hook you up with a driver and a SUV for you and your travelling party for the same price of a local taxi.
16. Local Chow
Nervous travelers may be hesitant to sample local fare, and sail close to the wind of the international fast food chains and miss out completely on the delightful local food. But the best travel advice you will get is to sample the local food where you are. There is a certain sacrilege in going to somewhere like China and only eating MacDonald’s and KFC.
17. Talk to Strangers
This is where you have to be brave and embrace your inner extrovert. Get out there and talk to people, engage in conversation. Find out where people are from and where they are going to and you will only enrich your travel experience. You could very well forge friendships on your travels that could last an entire lifetime.
18. Smile and Wave
Here’s one of the best travel tips that doesn’t cost a penny but can take you far. There is nothing more engaging and disarming than presenting someone, anyone with a large, genuine wrap around smile. Greeting people costs nothing and a smile is completely free, you never know what kind of day somebody else is having, and you will immediately get back the warmth that you give out.
When it comes to deciding which shoes to pack with you, put them all out on the bed and take away all of them except two pairs. High heels are a completely impractical waste of space unless you are going to a business meeting, and if you are going to be walking long distances your feet will love you for a much longer time if you make sure that you have your comfortable shoes with you.
20. Capture Important Details
Can’t remember where you parked or find it impossible to pronounce your hotel name or street name where you are staying? A piece of practical and excellent travel tip is to whip out your cell phone and take a quick photo that you can refer back to later. It’s also good for parking. Many large parking areas have floors that can appear identical and if you get lost you can always go back and check later.
Great travel advice is easier to come by than you may think, and the best travel tips come from those seasoned travelers who have gone before you and taken other peoples excellent travel tips. Which one of these 20 Best Travel Tips from Frequent Travelers was most helpful to you or do you have your own to add?