Before you embark on your next trip, be sure to read the tips and advice written here in this article. Whether you are leaving for a weekend getaway or a month-long European vacation, these tips are sure to help keep you organized and prepared for whatever action comes your way.
- Write out a summary of every single thing you’ will need before the things you will want. A good way of getting sidetracked is forgetting a number of the important things that you meant to bring along (toiletries, comb, etc.). Avoid shelling out your ‘spending’ money on tooth brushes, soap, etc… when you can use this on souvenirs, food, drink and activities.
- Look at the weather and understand what the local climate is going to be like when you visit. Too often (believe me, I have done this way too many times) people do not prepare ahead and arrive with shorts & flip flops when it’s cold & rainy… You will either have a horrible time roughing it, or spend a bunch of cash on new clothes you didn’t plan on buying.
- Research legal laws as well as other customs that are specific towards the area you are traveling. The last thing you need is to offend anyone or get into trouble ignoring a law you knew nothing about (don’t get caned in Singapore!). It’s always smart to stay informed, so make certain you know the general rules & regulations prior to exploring. Being up to snuff on local customs always helps when interacting with the local people.
- If you are traveling with someone else, be sure to stay close, together, as you stroll through town. Keep your mobile phones ON & ready… and avoid separating from each other. Every town has the criminals that prey on tourists and travelers as we are easily identified in foreign countries. I am not saying you need to be paranoid, but just keep your head up and take notice of your surroundings. For more travel advice on the local spots, check out taxi travel blogs and portals.
- When traveling to remote areas by car, there is not always a convenient stop at every mile marker. When you are traveling with children, in particular, this can be very problematic (especially with screaming babies!!). Take along a sheet so you can drape it over the open doors of your vehicle… This will give some semblance of privacy when making that emergency pit stop on the side of the road.
- One of my personal favorites: wear sunglasses if you want to be left alone on a plane! Most people will simply mind their own business and not to talk to you if they see you wearing sunglasses. Wearing sunglasses during a flight can be a great way to get some peace of mind… or sleep after a long weekend or trip.
- When traveling to a foreign country, become familiar with the local law enforcement. Find out how to call police in the event of an emergency. Also look for the closest police station to your hotel. In the event you do need help, knowing this information will come in handy.
- When traveling internationally, make sure that your data roaming is turned off on your wireless devices– including your cell phone. Data roaming charges can get very expensive. Instead, take advantage of free Wi-Fi hotspots available at places like airports, hotels, and restaurants. You can also use your free Internet connection when available to make cheaper calls through applications such as Skype.
Traveling the world can provide some of the best experiences you will ever encounter. The opportunity to meet new people, try new foods, and see distant lands that you’ve only seen in movies, can change your life. I’m all for spontaneous adventures, but just make sure to plan a little bit ahead so you can eliminate the confusion and chaos, while focusing on the best things in life!