Are you itching to travel? Want to make sure that you have the most perfect trip imaginable? If so, then you need to make sure that you’re prepared before you depart!
After two years of little or no travel, we know folks may be a little rusty on their travel skills. If you want to plan the perfect trip, then here are our 50 travel tips to get you started for traveling in 2022!
Travel Tips For 2022
1. Pack light
Whether you’re using a backpack or a suitcase for your travels, it’s a smart idea to pack light if you are able to do so. Packing light makes traveling easier and less stressful. Heavy bags can be a pain to carry around airports and on planes, and they can also be difficult to keep track of. Packing light also allows you to move around more freely and move easily through crowds.
Do you really need to bring that fancy dress that you absolutely will not wear on your hiking trip? Likewise, do you need to bring 2 weeks of clothes for a trip that’s only going to last for one week?
It’s best to be practical when you are packing for your trip. Consider this – it’s actually okay to wear some clothes more than once! In fact, doing so will help you to pack much lighter. You don’t need as much stuff as you think that you do in most cases, trust us!
2. When Going Out, Only Take What You Need
There’s nothing that puts a damper on things as much as being weighed down by your own bag when you are trying to enjoy some activities while traveling. The best thing to do when you are exploring is to only take the things that you need.
Don’t take too much, otherwise you may end up having some issues if things end up going missing. If you’re carrying cash, keep the amount you bring with you to a small number.
3. Have Emergency Cash On Hand
It may be worthwhile to make sure that you have some cash in the local currency on hand too, since you may be in a situation where a retailer doesn’t take card payments and you desperately need to pay for something.
Or, if you are in a situation where you are bargaining for a price, it’s good to have cash in small denominations. The last thing that you want is to be caught out when you really need cash, especially if you have your family with you at the time!
4. Take Extra Socks For The Family
You will be surprised to learn about just how easy it is to lose your socks when you are traveling, especially if you are bringing children with you too. Pretty soon you’re wearing mismatching socks for the remainder of your trip – not the best look! If you want to avoid mismatching socks, or worse – no socks at all – then it’s best to make sure that you pack a few extra pairs. You don’t need to take your entire sock drawer, of course – just a couple of extra pairs, just in case. Ideally, pack socks that can basically be used for any and every occassion – whether a casual walking tour or a dressy dinner.
5. Take An Extra Credit Card
It’s always best to be prepared for even the worst case scenario, especially when you are traveling. The last thing that you want is to be caught in a situation where you have no money and you’re far away from home.
You never know what can happen – you may end up losing your wallet when moving from one place to another, or perhaps you get robbed by someone on your trip.
For these reasons, it’s best to be cautious and make sure that you have some spare credit and bank cards on your person at all times when you are traveling. This will help you to ensure that you always have money, regardless of the situation. It can give you peace of mind too, even if you don’t end up having to use it.
6. Make Sure To Use No-fee Bank Cards
When you’re traveling, you don’t want to be spending your money on paying unnecessary bank fees to withdraw money. There are two different types of fees to worry about – foreign transaction fees (or currency conversion fees) and International ATM charges.
Foreign transaction fees can be as high as 3% of the total value of the transaction. An International ATM charge is a flat fee. When you use your ATM card as a debit card, you may incur foreign transaction fees. When you use your card as a debit card, you may incur both types of fees.
Don’t waste your money on bank cards that require a fee – instead, get a card that doesn’t require such fees when you are abroad, or at least charges a minmal amount.
You may think that a few extra bucks may not make a difference to your overall bank balance, but if you need to use the ATM or bank frequently it can make a big difference.
7. Don’t Be Afraid To Get Purposefully Lost
Sometimes it’s important to know where you are going, especially if you are in a foreign country or an area that you have never been to before. In this case, having a map may be helpful to you. With that being said though, it’s also okay to get lost every once in a while.
Don’t be afraid to explore the place that you are visiting. You may find that you encounter a new place that you may never have seen before if you strictly adhere to your map. If you feel a little nervous, it may help to do this with some friends rather than by yourself. It’s a lot of fun though!
8. Visit The Local Tourism Office
Not sure what activities are available in the place that you are visiting? It’s time to stop by the local tourism office! This place can give you information about local activities, all sorts of events that may be going on at the time and pretty much anything else that you can imagine.
Some of them may even be able to give you discounts that you can use to save some money on your trip. It’s a very valuable resource that you should definitely take note of and utilize when you are traveling.
9. Be Wary Of Taking A Money Belt
For most places where you’re likely to travel, you really don’t need a money belt. If you wear a money belt while traveling, you are essentially asking to have people ripping you off since you’re wearing your money in an obvious place.
It’s usually pretty obvious when you are trying to access it. And, it may not be possible to do so in a private space. It’s better to do what you can to act natural rather than making it obvious that you are a tourist.
You’re more likely to get deals this way and less likely to be swindled. Not only that but you’re less likely to get robbed too.
10. Carry A Small Backpack With You
If you buy a very large backpack, then you may be tempted to overstuff it with things that you don’t actually need. If you’re intending to go hiking, backpacking or on any other kind of trip where you will need to carry your luggage around with you, you will absolutely regret carrying too much stuff.
After just a few hours of walking with an overstuffed backpack, your back and body are going to feel super worn down.
The solution? Get a smaller backpack instead. Something that has a capacity of roughly 35-40 liters tends to be more than enough in most cases.
The smaller size means that you’re going to have to think a lot harder about the gear that you bring since you are limited on space, so you aren’t carrying things around with you that you don’t actually need.
Trust us – while you may be disappointed about leaving things behind, you’ll certainly thank yourself for it when you are actually traveling.
11. Make Extra Copies Of Everyone’s Passport And Important Documents
It’s also a good idea to make sure that you have some spare copies of your most important documents with you when you are traveling. Some examples of this include your passport and your receipts for your hotel room and the flights.
For your really important documents (like passports or vaccination cards) keep a digital copy. Either take a picture with your phone camera or Email copies of these documents to your personal email so that you can access them easily. You don’t want to be caught off guard, asked for information that you aren’t currently carrying with you. It’s also pretty handy if your documents end up being stolen since you’ll have backups to show law enforcement.
12. Try Not To Get Behind Other Families When Queuing
This may sound harsh, but If you want to save yourself some time in queues for various things, don’t get behind large families. It’s not something that they can necessarily help, but families will have kids in tow and this often means that they are carrying a lot of extra gear.
This can mean that airport queues can take a really long time as they are checking in a million bags. Instead, it’s best to queue ahead of families if you can.
13. Read A History Book!
You will end up having a much more enjoyable time if you do some reading on your location’s history before you go. You’ll learn more about the place’s current affairs if you know more about its past.
It enriches your understanding and your experience as a whole, so it’s definitely worthwhile even if it does take a little bit of time to read up on all of the information.
14. Don’t Be Ashamed To Walk Into A Starbucks Or McDonald’s
If you’re visiting a new location, it’s pretty easy to feel like a fish out of water. This is especially true if you are visiting a new country with foreign cuisine and customs that you may not be overly familiar with.
It’s always a good idea to try new things when you are traveling, but it’s also okay if you want a few creature comforts from home while you are traveling. If you want to stop into a McDonalds or a Starbucks when you’re out on the road, that is absolutely okay!
Even if it’s just for a toilet break or to get some WiFi, familiarity can sometimes help when you’re in a new place.
15. Always Get Behind Business Travellers When In Security Lines
As we mentioned earlier, business travelers often tend to be rushing around when in airports. They don’t carry a lot of luggage with them, and as such it means that they don’t have a lot of gear to check out or check in through security.
Also, they tend to be experienced at moving through the line quickly. These are the best kinds of people to queue behind because they generally want to be in and out of the airport at light speed. If you’re behind business travelers, then you’re more likely to be in and out of the queue in a flash yourself.
16. When Checking Into Hotels, Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For An Upgrade
When you get to your destination, make sure that you check out the hotel room. Is it to your liking, and are you going to be happy staying in that room? If there’s an issue, contact the front desk right away before you get settled in.
If you feel like you need something more, then it’s possible to ask for an upgrade if you want to. In fact, most hotels will be very open to giving you a new room as long as the rooms aren’t all full. Speak to the front desk at your hotel to negotiate getting a new room if needed.
17. Libraries, Starbucks, And Most Cafés Have Free Wi-Fi
When you’re traveling, it’s only natural to want to have a trip without any internet or phones in the mix – you just want to enjoy the sights and sounds that the location has to offer! With that being said, the internet is a big part of our modern world!
You may want to use it every once in a while to check in with friends and family to let them know that you’re safe and you’re doing okay. For that reason, it’s important to know where the local WiFi hotspots are likely to be.
If you can’t connect in your accommodation, then check out the local cafes, libraries and big retailers like Starbucks or McDonalds. These are all likely to have WiFi. Some local pubs may also advertise that they offer WiFi, so keep an eye out for those.
18. Lunchtime Is The Best Time To Visit Historical Sites
Feeling like seeing a bit of the local history? You can do yourself a favor by visiting them during your lunchtime – your picnic can wait a little while! The reason for this is because a lot of people will also be having their lunch around that point in the day, so if you visit the historical sites at lunch time you will have far fewer people around.
This may give you a better opportunity to enjoy the sights and fully see the location, since you aren’t battling against the crowds. In most cases, your best bet is to go to big tourist attractions either when it’s early, late or when it’s time for eating since this is when they will be quietest.
19. Never Eat In A Touristy Area Or Near Tourist Attractions
Unless you’ve packed your own lunch, it’s best not to eat your lunch in very tourist heavy locations. Not only are these places much more expensive to buy from, but the food and service generally isn’t as good either.
Try to take a walk further afield to find some nice restaurants that are off the beaten path instead. Try not to eat in tourist oriented restaurants either, since you will have the same issue.
If the menu is in a million different languages, it’s a pretty good indicator that the restaurant in question is one that’s designed for tourists.
20. Don’t Eat Out Every Night
You’re on vacation – it’s time to enjoy yourself! Wait a second though before you head out to another restaurant for the 5th night in a row. If you are staying in accommodation where it is possible for you to cook, do yourself a favor and get some groceries.
Cook at your accommodation some nights! That way, you’ll have more money for the other things that you want to do. Eating out can be expensive, so limit the amount of times that you do it. You’ll certainly thank yourself for it.
21. Eat At Expensive Restaurants During Lunch
When you do plan to eat out, it’s usually best to go to the expensive restaurants for lunch rather than for your evening meal. This is because these restaurants often offer deals at lunch time so you will save yourself a lot of money!
22. Pack Flashlights
We all like to think we have exceptional night vision, but why take the risk? Make sure that you bring a flashlight with you so you can see much more easily in the dark when you’re out and about. Or, if you have a flashlight app on your phone, be sure you know how to access it quickly.
23. Carry A Basic First-aid Kit
In the event of an emergency, it’s always better to be prepared. For this reason, it’s in your best interest to ensure that you have a basic first aid kit with you at all times when you are traveling. It’s better safe than sorry!
24. Book Flights 2-3 Months In Advance For Cheaper Tickets
We all know that plane tickets are expensive, so how do you save money when buying them? Easy – don’t leave it until the last minute, book your flights a few months in advance. You will get to save some money on plane tickets this way.
25. Use Meetup, The Sharing Economy, And Hospitality Websites To Meet Locals
Looking to meet some new people when you are traveling? Don’t be afraid to get in with the locals! Websites like Meetup are great for finding locals (and/or expats) to make friends with, and they can give you lots of information about the place that you are visiting that can be totally invaluable.
Check them out before you leave home. This can also be a great way to discover local family activities. You can also check out hospitality websites such as Airbnb, Lyft and Gumtree.
26. Be Open To Strangers
We’re all taught to avoid strangers as we grow up, and while it is important to be vigilant around people you don’t know, there’s also nothing wrong with having a conversation with a stranger every once in a while. If you’re out exploring, don’t be afraid to say hello to people every once in a while. You may even make a new friend!
27. Take Photos Of Your Luggage
Nobody wants their luggage to go missing when they are traveling, but it certainly can happen. It can sometimes happen thanks to mix ups in the airport.
If you do happen to lose your luggage then it will be really helpful if you have taken photos of your luggage and the items inside so that you can find your luggage more easily. It’s also a good idea to ensure that it’s easy enough to identify which luggage is yours before you depart.
28. Try New Local Food
If you have the opportunity to try some of the local cuisine, you should definitely do so. You may be put off by some of the ingredients, but give it a try – you may find that you actually love it! If you’re a bit squeamish, consider signing up for a cooking class.
That way, you know exactly what you’re eating, and it can also be a fun family activity! (Check with your hotel front desk or do an internet search.)
29. Consider Alternatives To Taxis
Taxis can certainly be useful, but, depending where you are, they are a massive drain on your wallet. It’s not ideal if you want to keep your money for more interesting things on your travels.
Ditch the taxi and find some other way to get from one place to another, like public transportation. Not only will you save money, but you’ll get a better sense of the locale.
30. Get Vaccinated
If you’re going to another country make sure that you get the right vaccines first. The last thing you want is a big medical bill in a foreign country because you’ve managed to get sick.
They may also be required in order to enter the country, so it’s important to also keep that in mind. (This is even more true in the Covid era.)
31. Take Photos With The Family
These are moments that you won’t get to experience again – enjoy them! If you are traveling with friends and family, take plenty of photos of them and with them. The future version of you will certainly be thankful that you did.
32. Pre-book Family Tickets To Attractions
Avoid the disappointment of missing out on your favorite activities by booking in advance. You don’t want to get there and find out that you can’t actually get in. Prepare in advance, and you may even find yourself skipping the queues.
33. Bring And Use Sunscreen
Look after your long term health and wear sunscreen. It’s a no brainer, but it’s important to mention!
34. Keep Your Guard Up
Always be aware of what’s going on around you and keep your guard up to some degree – it will keep you safe when you are traveling.
Family Cruise Travel Tips For 2022
Taking a cruise with the family? Here are a few extra tips that you should be aware of.
35. Arrive At Your Departure Location A Day Ahead Of Schedule
If you’re scheduled to depart on the cruise the next day, make sure that you arrive the day beforehand at the departure port. It’s important to note that a cruise isn’t going to wait for you if you are late, so make sure that you’re there with plenty of time to spare so you don’t miss out.
Also, if at all possible, take a direct non-stop flight. Having to make a connection provides much opportunity for things to go awry.
Even if it does turn out to be a little more expensive, it’s probably worth it. You can easily miss connecting flights due to weather issues, mechanical failures, and other things outside your control.
It’s even more likely that things can go wrong in these circumstances, such as missing luggage and more. Nobody wants to take a cruise where you’re stuck in just the clothes you’re wearing and have nothing else with you.
36. Choose A Cruise Line That Caters To Kids
If you’re going to be traveling with family, make sure that you choose a cruise that is designed for children too. One that welcomes children, not just tolerates them. If you don’t do this then you may find yourself having to work out how to entertain your children since there may be nothing there for them to do!
37. Consider A Ship With Pools And Water Parks
Want to have plenty of fun on your trip? You and your children alike will enjoy a ship with pools and water parks! Check to see if these features are present on your ship.
38. Bring Your Own Drinks On Board
You may think that it’s not possible to bring your own drinks with you when you are on a cruise ship, but this is not the case. They may have some limitations on what you bring, but for the most part you should be okay to bring your own drinks.
It will also save you quite a bit of money. Grab a bit of champagne or wine and put it in your bag ready to enjoy, so long as the cruise liner allows it. (Note, that if you bring your own wine into a public dining facility, you will likely incur a corkage fee.)
39. Bring Extra Toiletries For The Family
Your cruise ship cabin will most likely include some basic toiletries, but they won’t necessarily be the quality that you’re used to, and there probably won’t be much beyond shampoo, shower gel, and soap.
You will probably be able to buy additional items in one of the shops on board (or in the spa), but you’re going to have to buy them for a pretty hefty fee. Why waste your money on toiletries?
Bring plenty of them with you and you can avoid any issues later down the road. Make sure that you bring the medicines that you are likely to need, including over-the-counter items like pain killers or antacids.
40. Take Advantage Of Kids’ Clubs Where Possible
Sometimes it’s good to just have fun with other adults! And, sometimes your kids may need a break from you! Luckily, many cruises have kids clubs where your little ones can go and have their own fun under proper supervision.
Make sure that you take advantage of these kids clubs when you are on your cruise. The kids will have fun, and so can you. There will usually be an open house on the first day of the cruise so that families can check out the facilities. Go!
41. Sign Up For Private Tours Or Shore Excursions
Why not do a shore excursion when you are on your cruise? You can usually sign up for them pretty easily – check a box on the form before you depart and your tour is all ready for you. If you have a private tour you can ask questions freely too, which you may find beneficial.
When you reach the shore you can also do a private excursion which you can purchase through other tour operators before you depart for your trip or you are in port. Both can be a great choice for an enjoyable experience on your cruise.
42. Sign Up For Activities In Advance Or Soon After Boarding
If you’re going to do some of the activities on the cruise, you’d better sign up either before you get on the cruise or as soon as you get on the liner (as in on the first day) Often times, the most coveted activities will fill up on the first day with reservations booked out for the entire cruise.
This also applies to any shows you want to see.
43. Bring Something That Keeps Analog Time So That You Can Stay On “Ship Time” When You Are In Port
Bring something that keeps analog time so that you can stay on “ship time” when you are in port. In many cases, “ship time” will not be the same as local time, and you want to be on time when it’s time to return to the ship.
Don’t rely on devices that automatically reset to local time. It can get incredibly confusing if you don’t do this, and you may even end up missing your ship if you get the two times confused.
44. Keep Your Phone In Airplane Mode
Mobile network charges when you’re on a cruise are no joke. Keep your phone on airplane mode to avoid spending a small fortune on your phone bill next month.
45. Download The Cruise App
Technology is a wonderful thing – it’s integrated into your cruise now too! Download the app for the cruise on your phone, and you will be able to see the activities and your personal information on the app in real time. You can even use some of them to order from the bar!
46. Use A Travel Agent To Book
Booking a cruise can be complicated sometimes, especially with the sheer amount of decisions that you have to make. Speak to a travel agent to book, as it will help you to get the best possible cruise for you. It can take a lot of the stress out of booking.
47. Select Your Cabin Carefully
Choosing the right cabin is important if you want to get the most enjoyment out of your trip. Think carefully about what you choose. For instance, it may be a good idea not to book a cruise close to elevators or high traffic areas since they can be incredibly noisy.
That will make it very difficult for you to sleep. You should also check what is on the level above your cabin. You may also have noise issues if you are beneath the pool deck or the night life areas.
48. Consider The Limitations For Babies And Toddlers
It’s worth noting that certain cruises have limitations in place for toddlers and babies. On some cruises you can’t even take a cruise with a baby that’s younger than 12months old.
Also, there may be restrictions on what activities toddlers can participate – particularly water activities. Make sure that you check out this information before you leave if you have any babies or toddlers coming with you.
49. Get Travel Insurance For The Family
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and travel insurance will help to cover you on your trip in case anything goes wrong. You may think it’s an unnecessary expense, but if there are any issues then you will definitely be glad that you made the investment.
50. Don’t Overschedule Your Trip
It’s always good to have a plan so you’re entertained on your cruise, but don’t book too much in advance. Keep a little bit of time free for simple relaxation and exploration. Following a schedule that’s too rigid may just take a lot of the fun out of the ordeal for you.
Now you’re all set for your big journey! Follow these tips and you should have a tremendous time. Bon voyage!