12+1 Essential Travel Tips to Become a Master Traveller

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Travelling might seem easy if you have a little bit of practice, but what is it like for a first-time traveller? Well, getting ready is definitely not a bed of roses. The lack of thoughtfulness and skills can end in stressful situations and the otherwise smooth preparations turn to be frantic last minute packing. However, there is no need to panic and also keep in mind that it’s absolutely okay to make some mistakes at the beginning!
We’ve collected 15 essential travel tips so even if you don’t have the necessary skills yet, you can hopefully embark on your next adventure with a little bit of more confidence after reading this article. And later on, confidence will come with on-the-road experience, don’t worry!

1. Plan your trip but be flexible

Our number one advice is that you should always learn about your destination before you go there. It might sound boring but research is crucial. You might not want to end up in a city on a festive day when everything is closed. So, do some research, make a list of the places you want to visit but do not stick to them at all costs. Try not to be upset when things don’t go according to your plans because trust me, travelling definitely needs an amount of flexibility.

Sometimes it’s better letting events unfold naturally and not being stressed about squeezing every stop that you planned in your day. Just go with the flow.

2. Book flights well in advance

Well, it might seem obvious but we cannot highlight it enough. Book you flight as soon as possible! Once you’ve decided where you want to go, use Skyscanner or Momondo to check and compare ticket prices. You can save so much money on booking in advance. It only requires a little bit of attention but you’ll be so grateful to yourself later. 

3. Pack light

Let’s face it, at the end of our trip most of the time we end up using only half of the things that we packed in our suitcase. It’s in our nature, we want to fill up the space available and we think that we can take more but always regret it at the end.  Therefore, you should consider taking a smaller bag or suitcase instead to avoid having extra space.

Trust me, you won’t need as much as you think! A comfortable pair of sneakers is all you need. If you already start wondering if you need a piece or not, that means you do not need it. However, packing an extra pair of socks and underwear is always a smart thing. No matter how carefully you pre-plan, you can never know what might come along the way.

4. Make copies of your documents

Taking photos of your documents is one of the most important pre-travel steps. We recommend always carrying copies of each of your important travel documents (passport, ID, insurance cards, credit cards) with you. Not only is it a lifesaver in case it gets stolen, but it also might come in handy when leave the hotel and don’t want to carry your original documentation with you. 

5. Take pictures of your luggage

This leads us to our next very important step which is taking photos of your luggage and clothes. Taking a photo only requires a few moments, but you can spare yourself so much hassle and stress in case your bag gets lost. It’s always better to be precautious.

6. Always take cash with you

Always take some cash with you and preferably keep it in separate places. Your card stops working, the ATM runs out of money or you might lose your wallet, you can never know what might happen. Just be prepared! Also note, that there are still some countries which heavily rely on cash, so make sure to do a bit of a research beforehand.

When you go out, only take the amount that you need or set a limit for yourself (e.g. €50). Furthermore, it’s also advisable not to take more than one card with you at a time.

7. Use no-fee bank cards

If you can, get a bank card that doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee or an ATM fee. A few euros might not seem too much but at the end it adds up and obviously you would rather want to spend it on your travel.

8. Read about your destination

We recommend reading up on the destinations you are about to visit. Won’t your travel experience feel much more fulfilling if you go there knowing already some details about the place? Browse forums, buy or borrow a travel guide, you are guaranteed to enjoy your trip even more this way.

9. Wake up early

Do you want to have the best attractions all to yourself and enjoy the sights without the crowds? If you want to make the most of your time in your destination, you need to wake up early. You’ll be able to sleep as much as you want once you’re back home, but remember that it might be your first and last time in that specific destination. Therefore, make every minute of your day matter!

10. Visit historical places at lunchtime

Lunchtime is probably the best time to visit historical sites. If you don’t want to visit an attraction super early or late, your remaining option is visiting it at lunchtime. Everyone will eat in restaurants (usually between 12:30 and 13:30) leaving the attractions all to yourself. Get decent photos and enjoy the place!

11. Don’t eat near a tourist attraction

Since we are talking about lunchtime, we must include the following tip: restaurants near tourist attractions are always overpriced. Therefore, walk a few blocks in either direction to find a delicious restaurant which might also be popular among locals, not just among tourists.

Additionally, never choose a restaurant the menu of which is in several languages, it means the place is just for tourists.

12. Meet locals

Mainly people choose a destination to explore the authentic beauty, rich historic and cultural heritage of the place. Meeting local people helps you to immerse in the authentic atmosphere of a certain country. But how can you interact with them? Use Meetup! With the help of this application you can check what kind of activities are going on nearby, and join one. It’s as simple as that. Get off the tourist travel and enrich your trip!

+1 Put down your phone and enjoy the moment

Well, we have our cell phones in our hands all the time and though we might be reluctant to admit it sometimes, we are very much depending on it. We see a beautiful scenery or spot something interesting and our first reaction is reaching to our phones. It is not necessarily a bad thing, but sometimes we have to be conscious about truly valuing the moment. Avoid social media, be totally present in the moment and be aware of what you’re living.

Do not live through your camera lens, live in the moment!

Before you go, check the official link for Meetup here!

Interested in China? Make sure to also read our article about 8 features of China that you should know about.

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