After traveling for some time, we’ve collected a bunch of travel tips to make your travel experience a bit more pleasant. We hope these tips provide some insight, some relief and a bit of guidance.
Here we go…
1. Packing Properly Saves You Time And Space
Packing can make or break your trip (or your pockets).
Seriously, packing properly can not only leave you super organized but it also leaves you plenty of room in your luggage. I’ve implemented many of these tips in the video.
Here Are Some Hacks For Your Next Trip!
Posted by Brainy Crafts on Wednesday, 28 February 2018
2. Smart Traveler Enrollment Program
Before you travel or move abroad register yourself through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
First, it’s FREE! Second, it allows you to get updates about safety conditions in the country you’re visiting. Your friends and family can stay in touch with you and the embassies can reach out to you.
3. Have Zero Expectations
This travel tip may seem obvious but it’s pretty hard to practice. Learn to have zero expectations! No really, I’ve seen quite a few meltdowns happen because there’s this idea it’s going to be just like you saw in the Instagram filters.
Or you neglect to realize that the cultures are different than you and people from other countries do things differently.
When you have zero expectations and let go, you’ll have a much more meaningful and positive experience.
4. Get Comfortable With Traveling Solo
Before you travel solo, why not practice?
Practice in your backyard and head to the movies by yourself. Take yourself out to a nice dinner and not to some greasy fast food restaurant.
Then maybe, take a day trip to a nearby state or if you’re on the East Coast head to the West Coast and vice versa.
Why not, go to a nightclub alone? Hear me out. Become comfortable with being alone with a lot of people around you that you don’t know.
Try these tips out and you’ll be traveling solo in no time!
5. Learn Some Phrases In The Local Language
Make an effort to learn the local language when you’re traveling to another country. Not only will the locals appreciate it, but it reduces frustration if you learn how to say the basics, such as:
- How much?
- Where’s the bathroom?
- I’m from America.
- No thank you.
When I’m in Thailand and I say, “Mai ow ka” which means I don’t want. When using that phrase, most solicitations go away.
And in Japan, they appreciate when you say, I don’t speak Japanese or I don’t understand.
So take a few minutes to learn some basic phrases, even if you’re just visiting for a few days.
6. Say Hello More Often Than Not
Don’t be afraid to talk to people while your traveling.
I’m an introvert by nature but while in Tokyo, I decided to say hello to someone while eating breakfast at my hostel.
And, that hello turned into cool conversations and me learning about my new friend’s Palestinian culture. I got to know this young traveler and I learned more about his journey.
Such as, he’s taken a gap year and is using this year to travel. Because of him, we experienced random touristy stuff for the day that I wasn’t even aware of. I pretty much hijacked his itinerary.
So do the following:
- Say hello.
- If it feels right just run with it.
- Make a new friend who doesn’t look like you.
The best adventures are the ones you hadn’t planned.
7. Get A Virtual Mailbox
We wish we knew about this before we moved abroad.
A virtual mailbox! What a game changer.
No more having friends to check your mail, or needing a friend’s address to keep track of your mail. No more having that cousin or sister (thank you cuz and sis) to open and check your mail.
You pay a certain fee for these services and it’s pretty affordable. Here’s what you get:
- A physical US street address
- Unopened scanned copies of your mail and packages
- Ability to store, ship, scan or discard your mail as needed
- Ability to read mail content by requesting mail scanning, within 30 minutes.
- Ability to ask for repacks and consolidation of items/shipments for Big Savings!
- Ability to discard junk mail for free
- Access, Control and Manage your mail with the click of a mouse
Check out more information: Virtual Mailbox Tour
8. Those Marvelous Flight Deals
I know some of you stay missing those flight deals.
Just sign up for fare alerts through Kayak, Skyscanner, Travelpirates, etc.––all allow you to input your email address, and they’ll alert you when the price drops.
Use a dummy email if you’re concerned about the spam. But this will prevent you from missing those major deals.
9. Take Care Of Your Health
Do yourself a favor and travel with a mini first aid kit.
During the Songkran Festival, I broke out in a rash from the river water in Thailand. And then I got the travelers belly while in Krabi, and it wasn’t by eating the local food btw!
Travel with the following:
- Some form of Benadryl for allergies (both in pill and cream form).
- Activated charcoal pills, it will help to settle your stomach really quickly.
- Gas pills for any bloating.
Pick up a mini kit from the store before heading on your travel journey! Because shit happens.
10. What To Do When You Lose Your Luggage
Don’t we love it when our luggage gets lost?
No, we don’t. 🙄Take a picture of your luggage in case it gets lost. It’s so much easier to show a picture than to describe it.
“Yeah, it’s a medium-sized black bag…”🤣🤣
And always pack in a separate bag a few items such as toiletries, one or two outfits, so you can still freshen up and change your clothes while you wait for your luggage to be returned to you. 🤗🤗
11. Go Ahead And Eat The Local Food
Definitely eat the local food!
My heart breaks when I see tourists head over to McDonald’s. Granted if you’ve been living abroad for a long time––then we get it––sometimes you just want something other than the local food.
But if you’re visiting a new country, don’t miss out on amazing cuisines just because it isn’t something you’re used to.
Be flexible and open to tantalizing your taste buds. You’ll be surprised at the tasty bites you’ll find.
12. Bring Extra Passport Photos
Travel with extra passport photos.
Seriously, I have a few with me as we speak.
When you visit certain countries and you need to take those visa photos, instead of searching for someone to take your photos, you’ll have it right then and there.
I remember when I visited Vietnam for the first time, I had to wait in line and pay extra money (which usually takes out of your spending money) by using a local company to do it for me. The following time I visited Vietnam, I had my own photos.
It saves you time and money.
13. Easy Way To Keep Yourself Clean
Today’s travel tip may sound simple, but it really does help while traveling, especially in Southeast Asia.
So in a lot of places (in SE Asia), it’s very difficult to almost impossible to find napkins and toilet paper. Because most bathrooms have bidet showers aka bum guns.
And because the tissue clogs their pipes most of the time, you won’t find it.
So the tip is to bring lots of baby wipes and hand wipes. This way you can easily wipe all your essential *ahem* parts.
14. Understand Your Phone Plan Options
Figure out your phone plan.
Research phone plans in other countries, and see if it’s cheaper to get a local SIM card. Call your phone company to get an idea of what they offer for international roaming plans.
If you’re only going on a short trip or looking to save money, turn your phone on Airplane mode and use Wi-Fi to call via Skype, Line, Viber, or WhatsApp.
Remember, those you are calling must also have these applications downloaded on their phones.
When I went to Vietnam, I was told my plan covered WiFi calls, little did I know a handful of phone calls cost me $400! Thank goodness it was waived by T-mobile because they gave me the wrong information.
Do your due diligence!
15. Adapters, Converters, Oh My!
Go down the rabbit hole of adapters and converters.
You need your phone! Especially while you’re traveling abroad. And frankly, not all plugs are alike.
Research sockets in the places you’re visiting, and invest in adapters or portable chargers that can be charged off of your laptop via USB.
If you don’t use converters you risk blowing your laptop and phone electrical systems. So yeah, it’s worth the purchase.
Check back often as this list will be updated frequently!
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