Learn to avoid those common travel mistakes that almost everyone makes!
Making mistakes is a part of life. However, there are some very common travel mistakes that you can avoid making by simply planning ahead. Here are a few of the most common and how we know you can avoid making them yourself. You will have a much more enjoyable experience if you budget, pack light, and do a few more things to avoid making these mistakes.
Almost nothing can ruin a trip as easily and quickly as being afraid. If you let fear rule your actions then you will miss out on a lot. This is not to say you should abandon all gut feelings and run around anywhere. You should still avoid places that feel unsafe and avoid walking alone at night when you’re somewhere new. However, there are plenty of great things in the world around you! Don’t let being afraid mean you miss out on some amazing life experiences. Whether it’s heights or bugs or something else that you’re afraid of, consider a trip a chance to conquer these fears while experiencing something new!
Waiting Until Tomorrow
If you’re waiting around for the perfect time to travel when you have enough vacation time, work isn’t busy, you’ve saved up money, and other circumstances align perfectly…you will never go. There will never be the ideal perfect time to travel. There will always be a birthday party you have to miss or a souvenir you’ll have to pass on buying because you’re traveling with a small budget. However, traveling anyway is better than putting it off for some ideal time that will never come. If you decide you want to travel – just go! Granted you should do some planning and budgeting of course, but get started now!
Failing to Budget
Failing to plan is planning to fail! How many times have you heard that? Probably a lot but that’s just because it’s a true statement. If you don’t plan a budget for your trip at all you will find yourself spending money left and right and before you realize it your trip will be twice as expensive as you expected. Things can come up that you didn’t anticipate such as a drink minimum at a show or an expensive entrance fee to an attraction you thought was cheaper. Do some research ahead of time and find out how much it will cost to do all the things you want to do. There are things you can do that are very simple to save some money such as not brining a checked bag on a plane, avoiding ATM fees and signing up for rewards and loyalty programs. All of these things may make a small difference but added up the difference can be huge.
Not Paying Attention to Your Body
I hate to shatter the illusion but you are not invincible. Believe it or not you can and very well may get sick while traveling. Even if you have the strongest immune system you can still easily get sick on a trip. Between the germs on vehicle like trains and planes, in airports, at hotels, at tourist attractions, in bathrooms and at restaurants, there are so many places where you can get sick. You need to take extra precautions while traveling to stay healthy including washing your hands more often, staying hydrated and being aware of where you set down your cell phone. Pay attention to your body! If you start to feel sick or very jetlagged, take some time to rest and let your body have some time to rejuvenate. If food in a new place is very different and your body isn’t reacting well to it, try eating somewhat bland food for a while. Being sick will truly make a trip miserable so do everything you can to avoid it and you will have an enjoyable time!
Be honest. Do you really, truly need all seven scarves so you wear a different on each day of the week? I am a constant over-packer as well and let me tell you I never use even half of what I pack. Learning to pack lighter has helped me for so many reasons. The most important one is probably the fact that if I can manage to travel without checking a bag I save money too! That’s $25 each way that I could be spending on food or souvenirs or tickets to an attraction I would’ve otherwise missed! Start by making a list of the things you need. Organize it by each day of your trip. Then think to yourself “what are the odds that I will really need this?” If the answer is yes but it’s something you can find anywhere such as cold medicine in case you get sick, skip it. You can always buy some when you get there if you really needed it.
Planning ahead is great. If there are things you want to be sure you do it’s good to work those you’re your plans ahead of time to make sure they happen. If you’re going somewhere that is only open on certain days of the week you’ll want to make sure you’re available one of those days. However, if you plan out every minute of every day you will be so stressed about staying on schedule you won’t enjoy yourself! Plus, if something goes wrong such as the weather is bad for an outdoor activity, this will mess up your entire schedule. Allow for some flexibility into your schedule and enjoy being able to go with the flow.
Rushing and Running
In addition to over-planning another mistake that can really hinder you from enjoying yourself is trying to see every single thing you can while you’re there. It can be tempting because of course you want to get the most out of your trip. However, if you try to squeeze too much into a short amount of time you will spend more time rushing from one place to the next than actually enjoying your time at each place. It takes time to get to know a place and experience its culture. Take your time and soak it all up.