Category: Travel

Useful Backpacking Tips For Travelers

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It is fun to go on backpacking trips. But it will be so much fun to travel on ultra-light backpacks. Not many people know the way to travel light. This is the reason why most people end up lifting heavy weights on their back. Now, here are some useful backpacking tips to help you go ultra-light without compromising your needs.

1) Take only necessary items

It can be difficult to decide what you really need, and what you do not need. Plan properly the quantity of shirts, pants, underwear and socks needed according to the number of days for your stay. If you need to bring a dictionary, buy a pocket dictionary instead.

2) Make a List

Plan everything ahead. Make a list of the things you need take along and pack days before you depart. Avoid last minute preparation because when you pack in a hurry, you will tend to take unnecessary things along.

3) Share weight

If you are traveling with a companion, share the weight you both will be carrying. For example, take one tent instead of two. You can also share your shampoo, toothpaste and cooking gear.

4) Choose light bag

Buy a light-weighted bag. Heavier does not necessarily mean sturdier. Take time to choose the best backpack you can afford. This is indeed a very important and useful backpacking tip.

5) Limited capacity

Avoid buying a bag with huge capacity. It will tempt you to fill it up to the max. Plus, it might be difficult to handle bulky, half-filled backpacks.

6) Remove unnecessary gears

Remove the hip belt because it is an unnecessary weight that you have to carry along. You can also remove the sternum strap and other tags from the bag to make it lighter. Try to be creative and less fussy when you go on backpacking trips. Learn to improvise and you will find these trips fun.

The Best Backpacking Tips for Independent Travellers

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Right, let’s get straight into a summary of some of my best backpacker tips that I have learned from my travels all over the world. Of course there are many others yet I feel these ones listed below cover the core concerns of the Independent Backpacker, where ever their journey takes them.

Travel as light as possible. Don’t pack stuff you won’t use or may only use once. Create a strict packing list and stick to it.

Consider not booking a return ticket for trips longer than three months. This way you can literally end up anywhere and fly home from there.

Take a laptop/iPad and iPhone. Great for backing up photos/video, entertainment, staying in tough with friends and navigation.

Use Skype to stay in touch with friends. Also buy Skype credit which gives cheap international calls via Skype.

Pack travel sickness tablets, anti diarrhea, multi vitamins, pain killers, etc

Take a multi fit power adaptor and small multi socket power board.

Pack hiking pants and no jeans. Jeans are heavy and bulky and slow to dry

Always carry some alcohol. A great way to relax with new friends

Keep a journal. You will definitely want to record all your memories.

Always book one location ahead. This way you know you have a bed waiting for you. Though don’t book to far ahead as this will reduce your flexibility.

Pack a good guide book. Although you could get by with Wikitravel (online) for travel info and the internet in general.

Always try to book accommodation near your arrival train/bus station (country dependent) Easy in, easy out. Train stations are usually near town centres.

Use automated ticket machines to buy bus and train tickets when ever possible. No language barrier here

Avoid arriving after dark in your new destination. So much easier and less stressful finding your way around in daylight.

Always have some snack food with you. Some days finding cheap food can be an issue.

Carry hand sanitizer.

Be confident at all times. You will be less likely to be singled out by scammers and the like.

Politely turn down strangers who approach you. Particularly at train stations. Often these people will have some sort of scam.

Spend no more than four weeks in any one country at a time (except perhaps the larger ones) Otherwise you will get itchy feet.

Take a couple of books to read.

Travel in the shoulder periods i.e. Spring/Autumn, even winter in some countries like Greece and Italy. Prices are lower and crowds are down. Weather is still OK.

Photograph everything. I mean everything. All memories, and helps to fill in the blanks between the touristy sites.

Video as much as possible. If this is your thing. Great way to capture memories.

Take a small day pack. Used for day outings and will be your carry on luggage.

Allow your trip to evolve as you go. You don’t want to trap yourself to a fixed itinerary unless it is a short term trip.

From my travelling experience the above mentioned tips without doubt are my top tips. I am sure when you get out there and begin to explore the world you will come up with a few yourself.

How to Pack the Right Luggage

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No matter if you like to take a giant wardrobe with you, or even if you’re a minimalist, this is one of the best travel packing tips I’ve received: Use compression bags. You know those cheesy TV infomercials with those bags that you can hook up a vacuum to and it sucks out all the air, and ‘magically’ shrinks sweaters to the size of a nickel? Well these are similar, but instead of using house hold appliances, you seal up the bag, then roll out the excess air through a one way valve. This really cuts down on the amount of room clothes take up!

When packing, don’t pack your bag to the brim! More likely than not, you’re going to be buying souvenirs of some sort. (I’m a T-shirt souvenir kinda guy.) You need to have room for them in your bag on the way back home. Try leaving at least a 1/4 to a 1/3 of your bag available for room to grow.

Consider trying to make everything fit into a carry-on size bag, and one “personal” carry-on item. Most airlines allow for a carry-on that measures 22″ by 16″, and at least one “personal carry-on” item (i.e., purse, or medium-sized day pack that can fit under airplane seat). It makes going through the airport MUCH easier, and you’re guaranteed that your bag is going to make it to your destination along with you.

A backpack is your best friend. With all of those flights, trains, and checking in and out of hotels you’re going to be doing, a backpack is going to make your life soooo much easier than hauling those clumsy wheeled bags! Personally, I prefer the travel packs that have a detachable day pack. This allows for you to have just ONE bag to worry about when you’re hopping on and off trains, walking to your hotel, taking cabs, etc. Osprey’s Farpoint series of packs are awesome! The Farpoint 55 is lightweight, with comfortable and ultra supportive straps, and fits within carry-on specifications. They have a lifetime, unlimited warranty, and they’re just all around great packs!!

For whatever luggage you’ve decided on, buy TSA approved luggage locks for them, and your day pack as well. If a would-be pick pocket sees that, chances are, they’ll move on to an easier target. Now don’t let that scare you. Most places you go aren’t going to be hives of scum and villainy, but there are always people who make their living by preying on unprepared tourists… Which is not going to be you!

Backpacking Tips For Backpack Travels

Traveling with a backpack in many ways allows you freedoms you will not find if you are burdened with conventional luggage.Backpacking affords you the ability to travel swiftly and lightly especially with bus and train travel.

On the usual suitcase vacation you find a suitable hotel and set it up as your home-base. With a properly equipped backpack, you are not anchored to just one location. You can also choose thriftier accommodations like bed and breakfasts and hostels, plus if you have the gear you can go camping as well.

Traveling abroad with a backpack is definitely the way to go if you wish to cover a lot of territory. Make sure to bring along a reliable and up to date guidebook to give you the basic background of the regions you travel through.Also a good translation guide will be necessary if you are not familiar with the local language.

Security is essential when backpacking. Because you conveniently have all your belongings stored in one place, you can lose everything you own in the blink of an eye. So always keep your backpack within reach and in plain sight because sadly, there are many opportunistic thieves the world over.

When choosing a backpack make sure that has good weather protection and is of a sturdy design.Most backpacks have water-resistant compartments to store your belongings but to be extra safe, bring along some large-sized zip lock bags to store your electronics, especially in bad weather. A good travelling backpack will have a sturdy but lightweight aluminum frame. This stops the contents from sagging and provides a more even distribution of weight.

How to Combat Jet Lag

A common problem when traveling by air over a long distance is to experience jet lag, which is what happens to your internal clock when your body leaps across several time zones in a very short span of time. This confuses your body and it will take a bit of time to figure out what has happened and get back on schedule. Here are a few airline travel tips to make your next cross-country vacation a little easier.

Try to sleep on the plane if you can. Even though you are just sitting there, traveling on a plane is quite tiring. Sleeping as much as possible, especially on a nighttime flight or when flying from west to east, is helpful in reducing jet lag and making the transition a little easier once you arrive. If you are flying much farther than 5 or 6 hours, make every attempt to upgrade your seat to business or first class, as it will be a much more comfortable flight and you’ll find it easier to rest.

To make sleeping on the plane easier, make a specific effort to fly through the night. As an added bonus, fares for these flights are usually a bit lower. If you are traveling from east to west, try taking a short nap when you arrive. But don’t sleep too long or you will really disrupt your sleep schedule.

Speaking of sleep, you may actually find it difficult to fall asleep on the first few nights of your trip. This can be due to the excitement or stress of traveling, uncomfortable or unfamiliar beds, or even a noisy hotel room. If you think this may be a problem, bring along ear plugs or a sleeping eye mask.

Once you board the plane, go ahead and set your watch to the new time. This is a tricky way to get your mind used to the new time and it often works quite well. If you can convince your brain that this is the actual time, it will help you to get over jet lag quicker. When you arrive at your destination, try to spend some time outside in the sun if possible. This will help your body reset its internal clock.

Remember that some lucky people never experience jet lag. If your traveling partner is one of these people, you can retaliate by having them carry your bags (since they are so energetic!). Use these airline travel tips to help overcome jet lag on your next cross country flight.

Top 10 Easy Airline Travel Tips to Reduce Back Pain

Traveling is not what it used to be! So I realized I had to change my bad habits to better protect my aching back.

This became quite clear. On my first recent trip, I did everything wrong. I aggravated my back and created unnecessary back pain.

Then I got smart and figured what to do so I didn’t arrive in agony with an aching back. It made so much difference I’m going to share them with you.

Airline Is Not Easy On Your Body

Flying causes us to use our bodies in ways that are not normal for us in our every day life. When traveling, we are twisting, turning, and lifting heavy suitcases in ways that are abnormal. We are bending over to take our luggage off the baggage claim tram. We are putting our carry on luggage in the over head bin. This is like weight lifting! It is certainly not what we do in our daily life.

Then, let’s not forget the uncomfortable seat on the airplane with the cramped space the airlines leave you today.

So here are the 10 tips that I want to share with you to keep your back from aching, too.

Airline Travel Tips

1) Pack light – Think about the clothes you will pack. Choose the lighter ones. Coordinate outfits so you need fewer clothes.

2) Order a wheel chair – Don’t be proud! Believe me, you can save yourself a lot of pain if you let someone else ‘taxi’ you to the gate. This is really important with short connecting flights. But frankly, you get special treatment when you are going through airport security. I’ve found that wheel chairs have priority for security checks.

3 ) Preboard – You will have help with every aspect of your getting seated. The Flight Attendant will help you to get settled, and you won’t be rushed. He or she should offer to put your luggage in the luggage rack. By the way, if you are in a wheel, you will be preboarded.

4) Don’t lift your carry on luggage into the luggage rack – Let the flight attendant help you. Or ask a gentleman near you to put it up and take it down for you. If there is no one around to help you, pick up the luggage in stages. First, put it on the seat. Then move it up on the arm of the seat. Then to the back of the seat. Then into the luggage rack.

5) Don’t twist while moving any luggage – Twisting is disastrous for your lower back, especially when you are moving something heavy. Instead move your feet in little steps to get into the right position.

6) Reserve an aisle seat – There are many benefits to this. You have more space. You can get up easier and don’t have to twist and contort your body as much. You can also move about the cabin easier to move your body so it is better oxygenated to reduce the pain you might have otherwise.

7) Use a seat support – If you have your own, this is the best. Otherwise, make sure you have an extra blanket and/or pillow for back support. Recline your seat as often as possible. You take pressure off your back by doing this. Also, keep your knees at a right angle to support your back. Use a pillow, your carry on luggage, or an inflatable device to put under your feet to get the right angle.

8) Take your pain relief meds – I always use a topical pain relief product. I put it on my lower back and anything else that is hurting before I leave for the airport. This helps the back pain from flaring up as much.

Also, I use my 1 Minute Pain Relief immediately after I get off the plane. I see no need in letting pain get the better of me by pretending it won’t rear it’s ugly head.

9) Drink lots of water – This will help keep your body oxygenated and help flush out toxins in your body that add to and agitate pain. Don’t hesitate to ask for water if the flight attendants don’t offer you what you desire.

10) Walk up and down the aisles – You will avoid becoming as stiff by moving about the airplane and stretching. Do be careful. Stable yourself by touching the back of the seats. You do not want to fall. Try to move about the cabin every 30 minutes.

I hope these tips have helped you. Please share anything you’ve discover so we can help our fellow pain victims.

Airline Travel Tips Today

If you can’t afford a first class ticket and its privileges then you need to prepare all yours travel gadgets and patience in order to make your airline travel more comfortable. There are many useful advices about comfortable airline travel. You need to follow them all and you will avoid boring, uncomfortable hours in a plane.

How to get more sitting space and make your airline travel comfortable? This is a question that most frequent travelers have. There are three important things to know about your seat on the plane.

  1. First of all, aisle seat gives more space for your legs when you sit on the plane for long hours. Many people always try to get the window seat because they want to enjoy the view of the city during the takeoff or landing. The fact is that there are only few minutes of possibility to enjoy the view and later all of the flight is above the clouds. You yourself should consider if these few minutes are worth of long hours sitting in an uncomfortable position. To make sure that you will get an aisle seat it is advised to book the seat in advance. If your airline travel is planned only a few days before the flight or you don’t have time to call and book an aisle seat then you at least should try to come to the airport well before your flight. First people to check-in always have a better chance to get seats which they prefer. What is more, aisle seat lets you to feel more comfortable when you want to go to the toilet or just to have a short walk in the plane. You can easily leave the aisle seat without disturbing anyone.
  2. Second, seats near the emergency exit have more space as well. You can try to book this seat and save your legs and back from pain.
  3. Third, don’t be afraid to recline your seat only because you will disturb people sitting behind you. It will allow you to sit in a position which is better fit for sleeping and it gives more space for your legs. Of course, use this advantage with respect to others.

As you can see, there are quite a few things that you can do if you want to make your airline travel more comfortable. You can be able to take advantage of only one of them and this will be a bit of a help for you during your travel. If you have a chance to have them all for your flight then you can be sure you are taking most space and comfort that you could.

Is there anything else a traveler can do to make his airline travel more comfortable? Correct and comfortable sitting helps a lot but still there is a lot that can be done to make your body feel better. Tiredness and stiff joints are very serious issues which affect your airline travel a lot. One thing you can do about that is leaving your seat and walking on the plane for a few minutes each hour or two. But it may happen that you will have to sit in the window seat and a person next to you will be heavy asleep. If you don’t want to disturb your neighbor every hour then you should consider doing some exercise while sitting in your seat. You can start from moving your toes, then rotate your ankles, stretch your foot. Stretch out your hands, bend elbows. If you keep moving your body from time to time you will avoid tiredness and stiffness in your body.

What clothes are the best to wear for your airline travel? Most of us want to look good when they reach their destination city because there might be friends or family meeting them at the airport. However, it is also important to consider wearing comfortable clothes. You should choose lose fitting clothes. The best choice would be long pants and a long sleeve top. Sometimes it gets a little chilly on the plane or while waiting for your flight. If you still want to meet your loved ones gloving and looking at your best, then think about packing extra clothes which you can change after our flight on your backpack. What is more, choose comfortable shoes which you can take off easily while going through the security at the airport and once the plane takes off. Have your own extra socks for the airline travel or use socks which are provided by your airline company. It will help to feel you more relaxed and free if you follow this advice.

Are there any other things to do which help your body to cope better with an airline travel? One of the reasons why we feel tired after long flights is the dry air inside the plane as well as the feeling of being dirty. A best way to avoid it is to bring some cleaning napkins with you. Don’t forget to pack good moisturizer in your backpack. It is a good idea to pack a mini spray bottle with refreshing water and oil which keeps your face wet and fresh. Chewing gum or mint candies are also very helpful. They help you to fight bad breath, changes in air pressure when your ears pop, and calms down your nerves.

Basic Airline Travel Tips to Follow Before Boarding a Flight

Are you planning to fly to your place of interest anytime soon? Well, before you plan your holiday, it is very essential to bear in mind certain important things to avoid any last-minute hassles and make your vacation a memorable one. Following travel and luggage tips will help you plan your tour in a better way:

1) Airline

  • If you have planned your tour during the weeks of Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year, it is better to arrive at the airport at least two hours before departure. This is because these weeks are the busiest times of the year and the security check lines are very long. Similarly, most airports are extremely crowded on Monday mornings and Friday afternoons.
  • In order to reduce the possibilities of a delay, it is advisable to prefer a non-stop flight over a break flight. As the air traffic is comparatively less in morning, the early morning flights are very less likely to be delayed.
  • At the security check of almost all the airports, passengers are asked to remove their footwear. Therefore, it is always better to wear clean socks and slip-on shoes.
  • As the passengers are required to furnish their identification proof several times before boarding, make sure you carry a lanyard with a plastic passport holder. This will ensure easy I.D. access.

2) Luggage:

  • As the fee charged for checked bags vary between different airlines, make sure you enquire about the baggage rates with the particular airline.
  • Never wrap your packages.
  • Carry essentials, such as electronics, medications, and other valuable items, in your carry-on luggage.
  • Make sure you have labeled all your checked and carry-on baggage with your name or initials and your contact details. For easy and quick identification of your luggage, you can tie a colorful satin ribbon on the handle of each luggage piece. This will help you easily differentiate your luggage from that of your co-passengers.
  • Do not lock your bags as the lock might be cut off of your baggage for random inspection by the Transportation Security Administration. If you still wish to lock your bags, use the TSA approved locks instead of the normal ones.
  • If you are carrying your laptop computer along with you, bear in mind that you will be asked to remove it from its case and put it through the X-Ray machine. Therefore, come prepared accordingly.
  • If you are having with you prescription medicines, baby formula, breast milk, or diabetic nutritional supplements, do not forget to declare the same at the check point.
  • Gels, pastes, or liquids should be placed in one quart (1 liter) plastic bag and packed in the carry-on luggage.

The above airline travel tips will definitely help you prepare yourself well before you finally board a flight to your destination.

 

Affordable Travel Destination Tips

Your first stop should be at your local travel agent. Ask about special packages to specific destinations that don’t cost an arm and a leg to get to and see the sights. This opens the door to what is sometimes called ‘adventure’ travel. Ever been to the Galapagos Islands? This is an affordable vacation destination, as many travelers are now hearing. Costa Rica, a U.S. territory, is another popular and affordable travel destination. You have no exchange rate to worry about and by going to some of the more out of the way beach locations, you get a better flavor of the culture, enjoying pristine beaches that aren’t overrun with other tourists and at a very attractive price. Give your travel agent the parameters of what you’d like to get out of your vacation, as well as how much you can spend. He or she is going to work very hard to find an affordable travel package that satisfies your objectives and budget.

Do some research on the net, too. Scope out travel destinations you find appealing and try to get a baseline on cost of accommodations. Consider alternative accommodations, such as youth hostels, convents and monasteries (great places to stay, BTW) and residency apartments, sometimes known as ‘efficiencies’. For about the same price as a hotel, you can rent a furnished apartment, with a kitchen, cookware and bedding. It’s obvious you’ll cut your costs by shopping locally and eating at home. Affordable travel plans require flexibility.

Another strategy is to simply throw your wish list out in a Google search. For example, you’ve got a budget of $1000 and would like to get away for 7 days to a beach holiday in Costa Rica. Google it! Something like ‘travel package Costa Rica 6 nights’ ought to get you to a site offering a deal.

Your travel agent is your best ally in finding a good, affordable travel package. The agency makes a commission, but only if you buy the package! After making your own online investigations, see what your travel agent has found. It may be far better than what you were able to find on your own. Especially in difficult economic times, the sharp travel agent’s connections serve your needs well.

Choosing the Best Travel Destinations

If you have the travel bug, you will want to visit a thousand places all around the world. Using the tips in this travel guide will help you narrow down your choices for a perfect destination for your trip.
Step 1:
Think about the restrictions of your travellers. When you go somewhere you should make sure that you make a list of the things that you need to bring with you for each member of your family or friends that are going with you – especially if you have young children with you. They will need the most stuff. This way you will make sure not to forget anything and have to make purchases that you didn’t plan for. Young kids will not enjoy travel destinations that require a lot of physical effort such as rock climbing in Costa Rica. Don’t forget that if you have an older relative that requires handicapped access and a climate-controlled room, ensure that you have chosen a destination that will satisfy these requirements. The best vacations will keep everyone’s interests in mind so everybody will enjoy the time spent.

Step 2:
Pick destinations with a variety of things to do. Prior to booking your next trip, see what attractions and sights are there. Is there going to be something to interest everybody? Does the destination in question have a lot of activities for everyone to enjoy throughout the time you are there? If thinking of a resort, does it offer a kids club or babysitting services so that you can enjoy some adult time?  To keep all involved busy and happy, pick a place with something for everyone.

Step 3:
Think about the weather! It is important to remember that different times of the year make certain places better or worse visit. If you want to leave the country, do some research on what kind of weather will be expected. Drier months tend to bring larger crowds and higher prices. It is cheaper to travel during wet seasons but may not be very enjoyable. When choosing a destination for your trip, think about a place with nice weather so that your plans won’t be hampered by rain.

Step 4:
Think about the type of travel you’re interested in. All vacation trips are not the same. Each trip destination provides unique experiences for travellers, so it is important to decide. Are you looking for adventure with friends, a romantic time for you and your partner, or an easygoing trip where your whole family can just relax on the beach? Do you want an educational experience for your kids? The kind of trip you want will affect where you want to go.
Step 5:
Check what others have said about the destination. Once your mind is set on the perfect travel destination, it is wise to take some time and read reviews about the destination from other travelers. If you have decided on a place that you would like to travel to, talk to people who have been there to find out what they recommend for the area of travel you’ve chosen. Go to http://www.tripadvisor.com/ for lots of terrific reviews to help you select where you want to go next.