Being in three foreign countries, namely Hongkong, Thailand and China and several provinces in Luzon and Visayas doesn’t qualify me as a certified travel expert, but having experienced travelling in several locations, I think I’m fit to be someone who can be classified as a smart traveler. A smart traveler is knowledgeable of what to do and what to bring whenever he considers accomplishing something in his bucket list.
Here are my 18 tips for the smart traveller
Plan for delay
If things will go wrong, believe me, they will. The smart traveler must be proactive about it and load some extra cash and invest in patience, just in case this happens.
List the things that you need to do and bring
One to two weeks before the trip, the smart traveler makes a list of items that he needs to bring. This ensures that the smart traveler saves before he spends money on during the trip. If the smart traveler doesn’t write them down, there is a high chance that he will forget. This happened to me once on a three day trip. I forgot to bring shorts. I was wearing pants all the time during my entire trip to an island.
Learn to speak the native language
There might be a few words that the smart traveler needs to remember when he goes on a trip. If the smart traveler is a foreigner, learning how to say Hello and Thank you in the destination’s language might help him a lot.
Extra batteries for a camera or a flash light or a powerbank might be helpful
This always happens to me. When the smart traveler is the photography blogger type, or an instagramer, there is a high probability that he can’t get enough of taking pictures of the place that he is in. There will usually be a high demand of using electronic gadgets when travelling. Invest in good rechargeable batteries or a good powerbank.
Always Buy Travel Insurance
Better be insured than not, when travelling. The smart traveller never knows when an accident might happen to him, no matter how careful he is. Victims of accidents prove that medical expenses are financially devastating. Get an insurance. If you don’t know which one to get. Contact me. I can refer you to a trusted medical insurance company.
Always have a photocopy of your travel documents
In my travel to Thailand, I was asked by the hotel where I checked in to leave my passport with them as a deposit. In turn they advised me to bring along a photocopy of my passport just in case the authorities will approach you to check-out the validity of your stay in the country. It largely depends on how rampant tourists overstay in that country.
Bring sufficient underwear
It would largely depend on how active the smart traveler will be or how long he’ll be on the road when travelling. Make sure that you have enough.
Choose your clothes depending on the activities you’ll be having
I hate cramming. If you pack your bags late rather than a week early, chances are you will be forgetting or might be bringing along the wrong outfit. Invest more time in preparing.
Put essentials in a hand carried bag
If things / luggages get lost, the smart traveler has the most important things with him. Put your travel documents, medications, mobile phones, emergency contact numbers, credit cards and money in that bag.
Research your means of transportation
When I travelled to Shanghai, I did my research. Identify where the bus stops are, which bus numbers to take, directions to the hotel, where to eat, and exactly where the train stations are.
Knowledge is key to the success of your trip.
Keep bottled water close
You don’t know how safe the water is. The smart traveler makes sure that he keeps some handy with him when walking or taking a trip down the nearest marketplace or parks.
Memorize your room number and hotel location
It’s embarrassing if you don’t know your room number. It is best to know exactly where you will be staying in a foreign land
Ask A Filipino (They are everywhere.)
Ask a friend or a fellow countryman to point you to the right places to eat or places to go and take good pictures that will serve as good memories later.
Beware of Public WIFI
The smart traveler makes sure that his computer or smartphone is free from his highly confidential account details. If he uses them for online banking or have saved his username in his gadgets, it is wise not to connect to an untrusted wifi connection.
Take photo, lots of them
So you have a lot of stories to tell and show your family and friends, or you can blog about them like me.
Pay your respects
Respect the customs and traditions of your host destination.
Update your love ones
If you don’t have the latest in wearables, wherein your family and friends keep track of where you are or your last location was. Inform them via social media or an email.
Split your Money in Different Locations
The smart traveler makes sure he has money somewhere in his pockets. Some in his wallet. Some in the hand carried bag and a secondary bag. This way when he loses some, he still has enough money in other places.
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