The travel bug seems to have hit all of us, and with so many sights to see around the world, staying at home simply isn’t an option. However, going on holiday isn’t all fun and games, and many tourists might not know that the perfect trip takes a lot of planning. While it’s tempting to simply pick up your backpack and hit the road, if you want to make sure your travel experience goes well, then you need to put in a little bit of legwork before heading out. Here are only a few tips and tricks you can do to make sure your trip runs as smoothly as possible.
Pick Your Destination
Deciding where you want to go is the cornerstone of your preparations, and will be the biggest decision and most important decision you’ll make. The type of traveler you are will be a big factor in your decision-making process: are you a backpacker who only needs a rough itinerary, or do you have specific sights you want to see that require a bit more planning? Doing your due diligence and researching your destination will prevent a lot of headaches in the future. If picking where to go is tougher than you thought, Insider has put together a list of top travel destinations for millennials that could help out in that department, including Canada, South Africa, and Thailand.
Research Your Transportation
Figuring out how to get around is essential to travel — in fact, it’s the next most important thing after figuring out a destination. Transportation requires big decisions, such as how to get to a specific country from your home, and small decisions, such as how to navigate a foreign city. When picking airlines, a feature by Aviation JobNet lists some of the factors you should consider before buying your ticket. These factors include price comparisons, consumer ratings, and luggage surcharges, among others. Other transportation options will be specific to your location, and going on forums like TripAdvisor will net a lot of helpful tips.
Your luggage is the next thing you should be thinking about, and while overpacking or underpacking might not be enough to ruin a whole trip, it can put a wrench in your plans. To avoid the hassle of bringing too much or too little, travel blogger Nomadic Matt has put together a packing list based on his own experiences. The list includes a general count of how many t-shirts and pants you’ll need for any trip, as well as essential toiletries and items for your travel medical kit. You can adjust this depending on where you’re going and what the weather will be like, but having a foundation for your packing decisions is much smarter than simply tossing what you want to wear into a bag.
Gone are the days when going on a trip meant wading blindly through a foreign country. There are tons of resources online that can help make your trip run more smoothly, and can even open your eyes to hidden gems or good deals. Try crowdsourcing information on forums like TripAdvisor, or head over to famous travel magazine Lonely Planet for long reads on exotic locales. The Internet is a fantastic tool for research, and you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t use it.
The benefits of technology go beyond advice on a forum post, and advancements in science and tech have led to the invention of gadgets that are now essential for the perfect travel experience. Check out our post on ‘6 Travel Gadgets That You Should Always Have in Your Suitcase’ for some of the best gadgets that you simply can’t travel without. A smartphone, multipurpose backpack, and noise-cancelling headphones are only a few of the things we never travel without.