The only way to get better at travelling is by doing it. Every place is different but having some handy travel tips is a great way to begin with.

In this blog, I bring you the best travel tips to help you make your trips go smoother.

The Best Travel Tips For a Smoother Trip

I have been travelling consistently and have been learning my share of lessons. For instance, I got almost robbed in Bali, missed my flight, reached airport and found that we had no rental car and likewise! Travel mistakes or mishaps are bound to happen and are part of the travel, however, keeping these simple travel tips in mind will make your trip go smoother for sure! Here are some of my best travel tips based on my experiences.

1. Learn Common phrases of the local language

You need not to be fluent in the language of the country that you are travelling to but if you learn few key phrases, like “thank you”, ‘”sorry”, “please”, I think you will be all set!  

2. Buy Adequate Insurance

We normally do not take this advice seriously but travel insurance is one of the most important things. It is designed to cover unexpected emergencies and other related losses. Better be safe than sorry!

3. Always make photocopies of the important documents

Make photocopies of all the important documents like passports, driving license, credit cards and likewise. It will be easier to replace the originals should the need arise. You can also scan the documents and email it to yourself and access it whenever you get to download it during your travel.

4. Inform your bank and credit card company of your travel

Disasters happen. To avoid any inconvenience and disruption, its always wise to inform your credit card company before your travel trip. 

5. Check Airline luggage restrictions prior to packing your bags

Before you begin packing, do not forget to take a peak at your airline’s website and read about its baggage rules. We all know baggage allowance varies from airline to airline and we would not want last minute hassle.   

6. Keep a pen in your bag

A pen can be your best friend! This may sound like an obvious tip but most of the times we tend to ignore or forget these little things in life. So, always carry a pen and keep it handy so you are not scrambling when everyone around is filling custom/immigration forms!    

7. Rest well before your flight to avoid jet lag

Adjust your sleep schedule ahead of time. The more you rest before your travel, the easier it will be for you to adjust to your new time zone.

8. Stay hydrated on planes to avoid jet lag

People, its dry up there! keep yourself hydrated as causing jet lag is partly a result of dehydration. So, drink lots of water or juices to offset the effects of jet lag.

9. Research about your destination and get familiarise with it

Getting to know a place that you are headed to is half the battle won! I recommend that you check or atleast have a glance at the attractions, excursions that can be done, activities that can be done and likewise. I personally love reading reviews on trip advisor and read travel blogs before my trip.  

PS: Do not over research! some times your trip will be more interesting if you leave few things unknown and discover them when you reach there! 🙂

10. Make note of all contact details of hotels, embassies, cab companies, airline and family

Always make a note of useful contacts. Your phone is your best friend but make sure you write down all the information in a piece of paper and make it readily available when needed.

11. Download all route maps prior to your road trip

There is no road trip without a wrong turn! However, downloading the maps before you head out is totally worth it. Your trip will be smoother if you familiarise yourself with the quirks of navigating in a country that you are visiting. 

12. Download all useful apps that work offline

There are some amazing apps out there like XE Currency and Google Translate, which will save you from trouble. The best part is that these apps can be used offline! Check them out.

13. Choose your travel adapters carefully

Be mindful of the fact that not all adapters are are universal adapters. So, choose your adapter carefully. Presently, there are about 15 different electrical outlets used around the world. even though universal adapters are designed to be used in different countries, there are still some limitations as regards the number of countries in which they can be used. For instance, some can work in North America and Europe but may be not in Asian Countries. 

14. Carry first aid kit

Whether you are on a holiday or bag packing trip, carrying essential first aid kit is must. Most of the times we either forget to carry the kit or are unaware as to what to carry! Your first aid kit will depend upon various factors but from my personal experience, my top picks are – Band-aids, small bandages; Anti diarrhoea & nausea; insect repellent cream, anti allergy medicine.  

15. Carry separate sources of money. Never keep all money in one spot

Carry mix of cash, credit/debit card, forex card depending upon your destination. Cash comes handy when a lot of eating and shopping joints do not accept cards. For example in Austria, most of the cafes/restaurants do not accept card or cheque and I had to pay cash everywhere.

The golden rule of travel is to never keep all money in one basket!

16. Pick a local SIM card

It is typically a good idea to pick a local SIM card almost anywhere you staying for more than 2 days. Stating connected will make your life better. I always prefer picking up a local SIM card as turns to be cheaper. For instance, SIM card costs about £5-8 in France and you can find them in any mobile stores.  

Before you leave for your trip, check with your mobile service provider for the roaming rates and spare few minutes on researching the major providers for the detention that your visiting.

17. Drink Tap water instead of wasting money on bottled water

During your travel, drink water from the tap whenever you can. Buying bottled water is an expensive business. For instance, in Europe, bottled water will cost about 5 Euros and 10, if served in restaurants. Buying pricey bottled water everyday will eat up your budget. Majority of the European Countries’ water is perfectly safe to swig out of faucet. Ofcourse, stay informed and do some research before arriving at your destination whether tap water is potable to drink or not.

18. Do not hesitate to ask for free wi-fi in cafes

In cities and towns, you can seek out free wi-fi spots. In US and Europe, most local cafes, coffee shops, Starbucks offer free wi-fi, so do not feel ashamed of asking it. However, ensure to choose your wi-fi wisely. Stay safe and always stick “secure websites”, turn off “file sharing” and use “alternative browser”.

19. Never say “no” to free walking tours

Taking a walking tour is the best way to see the city. Walking tours will introduce you to rich history, authentic tales, local streets and just about everything that you need to know.

There are various walking tours that are for free. You do not need any pre-registration for this and all you need to do is to show up at the meeting point!  

20 Try local cuisine 

Act like a local! Every country has its own culture and food is an inseparable part of it. “Travelling” and “trying local food” go together like peanut butter and jelly. So, eat like a local and discover the local culture through food.

21 Go to the places that interest you instead of following beaten paths

If you do not enjoy a particular sight/activity, skip that an invest your time seeing to doing something that you really enjoy (even if it is not touristic!). After all it is your trip and it is important that you go to a place that excites you and leave you with endless memories. 

22. Don’t rush your trip

First things first, do not feel guilty about taking a tiny little vacation! While it can be tempting to try to see it all, I strongly recommend to keep your schedule flexible and don’t rush into seeing and doing everything within the little time that you have. Honestly, rushing through 10 cities in 10 days isn’t a good idea. Instead, soak up the place and local culture. 

23. Don’t be afraid to opt for a self-drive vacation

While we agree that there are various ways to explore places, our fondest memories have always been of those of our self-driven trips! A road trip is perfect to bond with your friends/family and it allows mobility and flexibility. Road trips get you out of your comfort zone and cherishes the spirit of exploration.  

24 Take lots of photos but also do not forget to get behind the lens and enjoy the place 

I love taking pictures, its like freezing your memories from a journey. After all, you may see these places or meet people once in your lifetime! Click lots of pictures, however, after you are done, just remember to enjoy and appreciate the place. 

Travelling is an experience and by keeping these simple travel tips in mind, you will surely come back with some great memories!  

You may also like to read “How to travel on a budget” and “How to book cheap Air Tickets