11 Tips For Stress-Free Travel

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Do you recognize that leaving on holiday can be a bit stress-full? You have to finish your work, started too late with packing your bags or leaving too late for the airport. For some of you going to an unknown place can also be really exciting and can even make you a bit nervous. Therefore we have compiled a list of our best travel tips to make sure you get stress free on holiday.

1. Plan, plan, plan

Plan your holiday

Your holiday should be the time of your life. Therefore, we can’t stress it enough to do some good research to the best places to visit in the country you’re going to. Internet is a powerful medium for finding out almost everything that you want to know about a destination. You probably can’t see everything so you want to make sure you don’t miss out on anything. Some good information sources are travel forums like Tripadvisor, Travelfish, and Lonely Planet. If you have some more time doing research check out some great travel blogs like Nomadic Matt, Pamela Sendee, and Expert vagabond. And don’t wait to the final moment to do your research!

2. Create a checklist

Oh, I often missed out to do this and always end up forgetting something. Making a checklist really, really helps! Create the travel checklist in excel or word so that you can re-use it for your next holidays.

3. Pack smartly

Packing smartly

So, how to pack your bags smartly? Well, let’s start with sorting out bags for you. Don’t over pack. Pick the medium sized trolley, which can be carried around easily and won’t occupy much space.

How to figure out which clothes to keep? It’s simple! Consider the weather conditions before making a pile of clothes. Now remove half of it. Quick & easy.

Undergarments can be packed in the packing cubes to keep them in one place. When it comes to packing you have to use every little space that is available. How about using shoes for stuffing socks or tees?

To safely pack your phone charger, headphones or any other gadgets carry put them in a Ziploc bag.

Nobody would like to get their clothes ironed after a long journey; the best way to prevent clothes from being crumpled is usage of vacuum compression bags. Iron your clothes, put them in the bag, seal the bag, and squeeze the air out. This won’t only save space in the suitcase but will also prevent creases. Here are some of the coolest tips to help you pack smartly.

4. Take precautions to keep your money safe

Keep your money safe

Keeping money while traveling is a sort of complementary task between security and usefulness. How to keep money in such a way that it becomes difficult for thieves to access it, but it gets easy for you whenever you have to pay for something. First divide your money. Even if you don’t consider any other tip to heart, at least use this tip. If possible divide your cash and credit cards into many safe spots. Download XE Currency app, which will help in converting any world currency.

The other important tip: always keep a backup carry bag. Carry a bank credit card or some cash in a backup carry bag, in case one is lost or stolen then you would have some money to go back to the hotel. Always keep extra money with you. You can never be sure what would happen next minute, and don’t take risks while you are traveling to an unknown place. You may not be able to use it but there is no harm in keeping a little extra cash.

5. Take extra efforts for absolute security

We would advise you to have travel insurance; you can never predict what happens on the road. So, for a safer side get a travel insurance. Why travel insurance is a must? And it would just cost you a few dollars.

Pack a first aid kit! Water purifier tablets, anti-diarrhea medicines like loperamide, paracetamol and hand sanitizer are some items that shouldn’t be missed in your first-aid kit, especially when traveling to countries where hygiene is less taken care of…

For a safer side always keep the scanned copies of your travel documents, tickets or even your license. In a case you lose your wallet you would still have some legal documents to file a complaint at a local police station. If you can’t carry scanned copies everywhere, then save them in your Dropbox or Google Drive folder. Simple!

6. Be smart with your phone

Be smart with your phone

We rely on our mobile for almost everything. From checking maps or photo sharing apps, guides or booking cabs, a smartphone is something that we can’t live without. How do you ensure that you are able to use Internet services abroad without sending a hefty amount? Try to look for options like KnowRoaming SIM sticker. This is nothing but an ultra-slim SIM card that will allow user to connect to local carriers across the globe. Users won’t have to buy additional card and wait for activation.

Another tip is to take an old mobile while traveling if you have one. Put your expensive mobile away when going for camping or trekking and place your sim in a cheaper mobile. Just a quick reminder- never ever put your wallet or phone in the back pocket. If you are doing it then you are simply asking for getting it stolen. So, use the front pocket or a sling bag, if you don’t want to carry anything heavier.

7. Book your homestay, hotel or hostel in advance

Homestay Bow and Martha of the farm in PakSong

To make sure you have a stress-free arrival on your destination, book at least your first night upfront. Book a homestay, hotel or hostel in advance to avoid last time glitches. Staying at a home stay will help you get a chance to taste local cuisines and interact with exciting people around. Even hostels are a nice alternative to home stays if you’re looking for cheap accommodation. Most of them are very clean, have Wi-Fi, comfortable beds and offer meals anytime you want. Check out this app for the list of best homestays worldwide, Homestay.com. Here are some reasons to book a homestay with a local.

8. Be guided by a local

Dipak on his tea plantation

To spur up your experience at a new place, see the hidden gems and get an understanding of the local culture why not get in touch with a local? Locals know the best places to take you, off the beaten path, can give you insight in local cuisine, and how to bargain to get the best deals.

Find a local guide upfront instead of chasing them after arrival. For finding local guides and hosts in Europe Trip4Real is a good website to check out. For local tour guides and hosts in Asia and Africa check out I Like Local.

9. Download some great travel apps

The best travel apps

Nowadays there are some great travel apps out there that help you in organizing and facilitating your trip. To keep a track about all the flights and respective timings use the simple app called FlightTrack.

If you want to know the basic tip rates at a local restaurant, use the Tipulator app. Not to forget interacting with localities and don’t hesitate to ask people for help. We would suggest you to stay alert at all times and try to avoid areas that look unsafe or make you feel that way. Try the TravelSafe app for saving emergency numbers in case of crisis. What matters more is that you don’t let other people notice that you’re freaking out if you really can’t regulate it.

Keep your shoes on and explore! Exploring is a crucial part of traveling to unknown place, but it can be really difficult. Use your smartphone to find hot spots nearby and don’t resist yourself from visiting there. Try different cuisines, dance around on folk songs, or drop in to the local shopping place; it would be a great adventure to do so. FourSquare is the best app for discovering the best places to eat and visit.

10. Try to mix up with the crowd

Try to mix with the crowds

If it’s possible then try not to act like a “tourist”. You must have heard tons of mugging tales, most of them would be unfortunately because tourists would be seen snapping around in flip flops, shorts and a tee. Did we just forget to mention their SLR Camera? Even if they wear less “tourist” clothes they may be hiking around with a lavish looking smartphone. There are many occasions where flashy and bling stuff looks nice, but in a city, which you don’t know, it’s not a sane idea.

11. Avoid getting over-friendly with strangers

Don’t drink so much that you aren’t aware about what’s happening around you. You never know the moment you lose control of senses, someone might swipe wallet right from your hand. Stay in contact with a friend or relative, so that someone always knows about your whereabouts. Use Google Translate or SwearPort to get tough with anyone who misbehaves. And it would be appreciable if you can speak in the local language. People would be more helping and friendly if you are able to converse in their language.

To go stress free on holiday take some precautions, make a checklist and stick to it. Everyone has imagined a worst situation or have some sort of fear when it comes to traveling to a new place. Shit happens! So, loosen up a little and go on impromptu camping trips. Don’t go by the stories created by media or biased people. With a good planning you can make your trip really enjoyable. It isn’t that bad as you might think, so explore, have fun and just live!

What do you do to go stress-free on holiday?

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We are a group of like-minded travelers who want to make a difference via travel. We are always looking for the off the beaten track places with a local touch. At the same time we want to contribute to the beautiful people who are living in the countries we travel to, share our knowledge and connect people worldwide.

– Sanne Meijboom, Founder

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