The year 2018 is almost halfway done! Did you spend any of the past few months travelling somewhere? If you haven’t, well it is never too late to get that passport of yours stamped and those suitcases rolling. But before anything else, here’s a list of (un)solicited travel tips that we prepared especially for you. After all, international travels can get anywhere between great and messy, and what separates the former from the latter is how prepared you are and how much know-how you have. Enjoy!
1. Arrange for a guide (or guides) beforehand
Let’s face it: if you’re travelling to another country that you’ve never been in before, your guides are going to be your lifelines throughout the entirety of your stay there. If you’re going to the typical tourist places of that country, you might want to consider booking professional tour guides. But if you’re more into backpacking and unusual routes, you can try hiring a local person to guide you through the streets and culture of your travel spot.
2. Have a debit card? Make good use of it
Debit cards are really convenient. With a minimal fee, you can spend on things and services you want or need, without the hassle of keeping substantial amounts of money in your pocket all the time. This can also be a good way to secure your personal safety while walking around on unfamiliar streets.
3. Learn about local currencies beforehand
The trick to managing your finances well while abroad is to learn everything you can about the local currencies even before making the trip itself. And we are not just talking about the exchange rate here. It’ll also help if you can familiarize yourself with the different forms and standards of money in the area.
4. Securing your luggage
When bad luck strikes, sometimes it strikes in the form of your airline losing one or your entire luggage. How do you prevent this? First, try to make your luggage stand out by putting a unique item – like a sticker or ribbon – on it so it can be easily recognizable.
5. Recovering lost luggage
Recovering your lost luggage can be really challenging, especially on the part where you have described what your luggage looks like to the airport authorities. “It’s a black bag!” Well there hundreds or maybe thousands of black bags out there, right? Having pictures of your entire luggage for future reference can really come in handy – it just takes a bit of preparing.
6. Try your best to dress appropriately
By travelling internationally, you are not only going to a foreign land but are also going to a place with cultures, norms, and standards that may be different from what you are used to. This more often than not translates to how you dress on some occasions as well as some places. Though there is no need for suits and ties, you can at least try to wear more-than-casual clothes.
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7. Pick up a few phrases
You’ll be surprised on how a few phrases of their native language can break the ice between you and the locals. This is certainly useful when approaching locals for some assistance.
8. Create a travel itinerary
It’s easy to chalk this up tip as pedantic or boring, but it can really get you out of tricky situations in the long run. Keep a travel journal with a day-by-day schedule of your entire trip. Include there any relevant information such as flight numbers, hotel reservations, and addresses. If circumstances call for it, you can just whip out your journal and find the information you need
9. Get yourself some international travel insurance
Even if you think you don’t/won’t ever need one, we suggest that you still apply for international travel insurance, if only for the sake of your own and your loved ones’ peace of mind. You can never know, right?
10. Have fun!
Unless you are made of money, international trips won’t come as often as we’d like them to be. So go on ahead and have fun! Maximize your stay in that foreign country, learn things, meet people, and just basically have the time of your life. When it’s time for you to go home, make sure you bring back fond memories of your trip abroad.