GET SMART: Trick and Tips for a Smart Traveller

Travel is all about new experiences, good and bad. However, you do not want to spend your whole time fixing things that could have been avoided and get in the way of good times.  The following is a compilation of tricks and tips for those who love to travel.

Countless times, I have ended up in situations that could have been avoided if only I had a little guidance, which is the purpose of this list of tricks for the smart traveler. 

 The smart traveler travels light. 

Carry only the basics as you will be sure to score a bunch of cheap clothing throughout your journey and if you’re keen, try to get everything you need into a carry-on bag. Make sure everything you take can be utilized and has a purpose. This will make your airport arrival experience a lot easier. You won’t have to pay for extra baggage. Waiting around the luggage drop is painful, and if you do get your hands on some extra goodies that you can’t leave without, post them home and avoid the excess weight for the rest of your journey. Oh yeah, get travel insurance. Everybody thinks it will never happen to them, but you will hear messed stories of people being injured or robbed on your trip, and having that peace of mind will put you at ease when you’re lugging around your electronics. 

On the Plane, The savvy traveler is prepared.

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Nobody is in love with airplane travel, and if they are, they haven’t been on a 22hr long hall flight with multiple changeovers. Be prepared in your carry-on Pack a warm coat as the planes can get a little chilly, and if you are one of those cheap airlines, they will sting you for a blanket. A toothbrush for obvious reasons and some earplugs for those. A neck pillow. However, I have found that the headrest sides fold up and give enough support and comfort to catch some Zs. In addition, a tablet is not a bad idea if you cannot live without entertainment. Every few hours, stand up and have stretch, walk around. Drink plenty of water to flush the toxins out. After all, you’re traveling on a tin can full of gases expended from people’s orifices. If you are on a long-haul flight, a change of clothes and towel is not a bad idea as most airports have showers, and when you finally hit your destination, you will be as fresh as Brad Pitt in the 90s. I do not mean to state the obvious, but I will. Your Passport. Yes. And cash to wade out those long transfers with some retail therapy. When I say retail therapy, I mean drinking.   

Cash:  The smart traveler is cash savvy.

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Cashing overseas can be costly, like being hit by bank fees or getting terrible exchange rates. A primary way is to buy money online before leaving or shop around for the best rates on a travel money card. Never carry around more than you need, and do not flash your cash around because you never know who’s watching and always use the safe at your hostel or hotel. Fanny packs are lame, but they are great when traveling, and they have some no so obvious ones that you can tuck under your garments. It takes the hassle of reaching into your pockets or backpack every 20 minutes to see if your wallet is still there.  

Destination:  I love this part journey. Everything is new. The essence of why we travel. The basic need to expand and grow for self-realization and discovery. A wise man once told me, “Make no plans, and you know the rest.” Words of sage.

When you get there, you will be bombarded with all these new sights, sounds, and people offering you services that you have no idea the cost of. Well, ask around and talk to people. Do not accept the first offer going. If you catch a cab from the airport, make sure they put their meter on. Usually, they will play hardball but threaten to get out. They will usually come around, and if they. Get out and find the next best deal. A good tactic is half whatever they say, and then if they don’t come around, walk away. That all depends on where you are going, obviously. Modern countries are usually fine, although I have been taken on many a wild goose chase from cabs trying to draw out a fair. This leads me to my next point.

Get a SIM card for your phone ASAP.

Load it up with data to know where you are and how to find things. It makes life a lot easier and will save you a lot of valuable time. Although sometimes getting lost is what it’s all about. Get off the beaten track and find the less touristy areas, and you will notice that everything is cheaper, and you will experience more of what the culture offers.  

Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and enjoy the journey. 

Barbara Hoffman

Overall. Be present, be aware, have fun, and follow your instincts. Oh yes, and these tips.

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