Read my 30 best travel tips from 6 years of globe-trotting adventures to make your next journey unforgettable. Experience the world like a seasoned traveler.
I gained many experiences during my six years of traveling the world: positive experiences and negative ones.
All of them taught me a lot and did not only help me while traveling but also in all kinds of situations.
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Traveling is the best school in my opinion. I want to share my best travel tips with you in this post.
1. Get lost on purpose
The best way to explore a new place is by walking. Don’t plan too much, but decide spontaneously which direction or street you want to take.
This way, you will really get to know the place apart from the typical tourist trails. Write down the name of your hotel and ask locals on your way back for directions.
2. Don’t plan too much
Don’t plan too much in advance; you never know how you’ll like a place or who you’ll meet on the road.
Imagine you worked out a whole itinerary and already pre-booked all accommodations.
On your second day, however, you meet a group planning a cool trip to another place, and you’d love to join them. I guess you know what I’m driving at.
3. Meet local people
Asking for directions is also an easy way to get in contact and start a conversation with locals.
Most people have at least basic English skills, and a conversation with hand gestures and body language can also be interesting and enriching.
4. Use an incognito window for bookings
For example, whenever you book anything, flights, or hotel rooms, use your browser’s incognito window.
Most websites save cookies on your computer and increase prices gradually when you keep checking.
5. Treat your body well
Traveling can be pretty tiring for your body, and it isn’t easy to maintain a daily exercise routine. Remember to sleep and rest, drink enough, and eat healthily.
To stay fit on the road, you could swim in the sea, jog, or explore a new place by bike.
I just started carrying along with a TRX Suspension Trainer* that you can use everywhere for a full-body workout.
6. Get up early
Most sights, beaches, and other exciting places are crowded.
Be there a few minutes before they open, and you can take amazing photos without hundreds of people on them.
7. Try local food
Ask locals what they normally eat or what their favorite food is and taste it.
Eat street food and try the weirdest-looking dishes on markets.
Don’t be scared of getting sick of the food. That can also happen in the fancy-looking and expensive restaurant next door.
8. Don’t be afraid
The world is actually a better place. Traditional media sometimes tell things that are not right.
You should go out there and explore things for yourself and not only believe what others are telling you.
Use common sense. You will soon experience that most people are friendly and helpful.
9. Carry around passport photos
You’ll wonder how often you need passport photos. Be it for a visa, a new passport, or a diving license. Save time and hassle, and carry around spare photos.
10. Break out of your comfort zone
Leave your comfort zone and overcome anxieties.
You will experience new things and strengthen your confidence.
11. There is always a solution
If you face a problem on the road, don’t give up or panic. There is always a solution. The best moments while traveling are always where you are stuck.
Do not be afraid to get into such a situation. You will wonder how many friendly and helpful people there are.
12. Back up everything and make copies
Back up your files and photos in your cloud and on an external hard drive.
What is worse than losing your favorite photos from your last trip?
Additionally, make digital and physical copies of all essential documents such as passport, driver’s license, ID card & visas, and note down emergency numbers, serial numbers of your electronics, and information about your health insurance.
13. Be Open-Minded
Don’t judge the lifestyles of others. Listen to their opinion, ask questions, and be open-minded to experience and learn something new.
You don’t need to agree with everything, but also, don’t assume that only your views are correct.
14. Be patient
Don’t waste your energy being angry about situations you cannot change anyway.
Did you miss the only bus that is leaving today?
Take the next one the next day!
Does the visa renewal take three days?
Make a spontaneous trip to the nearby national park.
15. Slow down
Don’t try to see the whole world in one year. Take your time to explore fewer places more intensively.
16. Pack a sarong
Wherever I go, I carry along with a sarong. It is super light and small and can be used for many different purposes, such as a towel, sun protection, or beach towel.
17. Take out a travel insurance
Having travel insurance is so important. You never know what happens. A motorbike accident in South East Asia, a broken leg when climbing a volcano, or getting fiver in a remote place.
Without insurance, you easily pay several thousand euros for doctors and medicine.
18. Bring several credit cards
Some countries only accept Mastercard, others only Visa.
Be safe and take at least one Mastercard and one Visa card.
19. Don’t change money at the airport
You’ll get the worst exchange rate at the airport. I mainly withdraw money at an ATM.
20. Buy a good camera
Photos are the best memories of your travels, so invest in a good camera.
21. Pack less
After a couple of weeks on the road, you start feeling every gram in your backpack.
Most of the gear you won’t need anyway; otherwise, in other countries, there are shops where you can buy most items.
22. Have basic language skills of the countries you visit
Most people have at least basic English skills, and you will get quite far with hand gestures and body language. Nevertheless, learn basic words in the language of the countries you visit.
People will highly appreciate it if you can say at least “Hello” and “Goodbye” in their language.
23. Use Skyscanner to find cheap flights
Skyscanner searches many different airlines, and you can look for flights to a specific airport or any airport within a country or even continent.
Moreover, you can choose an exact traveling date or search for the cheapest flight within a certain month or year. This is especially interesting when your travel destination and/ or date are flexible.
24. Be polite and smile
Be polite to other people and walk around with a smile on your face. It will make your life easier, and you will soon make new travel friends.
A smile breaks the ice when you meet someone for the first time, and in difficult situations, it breaks the tension.
25. Say Yes and accept random invitations
Say yes when someone spontaneously invites you to dinner, their home, or a cool activity.
Trust me; you will build beautiful memories.
26. Carry along extra cash
Carry along some extra cash in different places for emergencies. I recommend a couple of hundred dollars as a backup when you lose your wallet, can’t find a working ATM, or get your credit card stolen.
You can stash it, for example, in your socks, cosmetic bag, day pack, and some in your backpack or suitcase.
27. Use a Drybag to keep your valuables dry
A drybag* is one of the most useful travel items.
It helps keep your smartphone, camera, travel documents, or other valuables dry on a boat trip or during a rainstorm.
28. Visit local markets
By visiting a local market, you get to know real life. O
bserve locals and taste typical food. It is so delicious and fresh, and you can even save a lot of money.
29. Bring portable chargers
It happened to me many times in the past that I have been at a great place or a long hike with lots of photo motifs, and the camera or smartphone battery suddenly died.
Annoying! Avoid that problem by bringing a portable charger.
30. Be flexible
Be flexible and open to change plans.
When you meet nice people planning a cool trip, go with them.
When you like a place a lot and would like to explore it more, extend your stay.
31. Buy a local SIM card
Local SIM cards and internet plans are in most countries really cheap.
Buy a local card and use your smartphone as navigation to look for more travel tips and Must-See places, to stay in contact with your family and friends, and, of course, for emergencies.
Do you agree with my tips, or have others to add? Let me know in the comments below :)
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