Tips and tricks from one traveller to another
Why rolling is life and bread is your friend
Roll don’t fold
Rule number 1 when backpacking, roll your clothes. Trust us it will reduce creases and save on so much space. It also means you can stay organised and see all your clothes better.
Fill your boots:
Just think of all that wasted space in your hiking boots or trainers! Firstly, we would recommend wearing your hiking boots because they’re heavy but if not just stuff them with underwear to optimise the space.
Google maps offline
You can create an offline google maps itinerary, this means you can use it when you’re out and about and don’t have WIFI or data. Just make sure you download the map before you leave WIFI then you’ll never get lost again. Please make sure it’s a safe place to have your phone out otherwise most hostels will offer a map and be happy to direct you.
If you're in a foreign speaking country this will be your bible. Its a good way to learn basic phrases, it doesn't always translate the same and if your French accent isn't quite on point just show them your phone and they can read the translated version. You can even download an offline version which is so handy. Be sensible though if you're in a dodgy place don't get your phone out. Always ask in the hostel what the area is like. It also means you don't have to carry extra books around.
5. Don’t data roam
You’ll be surprised and perhaps pleased to know that even some of the most remote and basic places have WIFI. Yes you can get it in the jungle, yes you get it in the mountains and yes we even once had it on a tuk tuk. Don’t forget to make sure your data roaming is turned off otherwise you’ll use international data and it’ll cost you a fortune. If you want to use an international sim card you need to get your phone unlocked, ring your network provider as most will do this free for you now.
6. Stop looking for flights!
Have you ever wondered why your flight prices go up since you last looked? Your search history is monitored by air lines so they hike the price up because they know you keep looking. So make sure you go onto private browsing on your phone or laptop. Well that or just book it what are you waiting for?!
7. Learn the language
Ok so you might not be fluent in Spanish but it would really help to know hola, adios, una cerveza por favour… All the important ones of course. You could get a phrase book or download an audio book or app so you’ll never be bored on them long flights again. It helps you to interact with the locals and you look less like fresh meat, so less likely to get ripped off. Good luck learning Mandarin though guys.
8. Free breakfast, yes please
Bread, bread and more bread with a side of cereal. It’s not always great if you’re gluten free or watching your carb in take but I’m afraid watching your wallet comes in higher than watching your waistline when traveling. Most hostels offer free breakfast so make sure you fill up and you might even be lucky and get fruit. If you have got a food intolerance speak to the staff they might be able to offer an alternative, or that might just be wishful thinking I’m afraid.
9. Download on Netflix
This was mind blowing stuff when it became available last year. As long as you can get good enough WIFI in the hostel or airport to download in advance then you’re well away. Gone are the long boring bus journeys. If you’re traveling in a pair get a head phone splitter and you can watch together. If you’re traveling solo, watch what you want, when you want!
10. Forgot your charger?
Don’t worry if you forgot or lost your adapter. If you’re in a hotel most TV’s have a USB port so you can plug in and charge. If you don’t have a TV ask reception to plug it into the computer. Otherwise you can always ask a fellow traveller to borrow theirs, it’s a good way to spark up conversation as well. Most airports have charging stations and a lot of flights have a USB port on the TV, just make sure your lead is in your hand luggage.
Check out our kit list section, we’re here to help and I’m sure there will be something you didn’t even realise you needed.