First Time Travelling: What you wish you knew

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    What advice would you give someone about to travel abroad for the first time?

    To all you seasoned travelers, do you remember the first time you went travelling, solo or with friends, and what you learned from your trip that you would want to share?

    One of my most fundamental lessons is that when I travel with others, there is rarely a substitute for good company. When things go terribly, they become funny. Missing flights, losing luggage, having your clothes and belongings wash away with the ocean tide, are some of the funniest and best memories when you look back on them with friends and can laugh.

    That, and knowing that smiling widely and rubbing your belly doesn't translate to asking for a Happy Meal at McDonalds when you can't speak the language.

    What advice would you share?

    Mariah
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    Immodium is your friend and never forget it.
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    (Original post by Topdeck Travel)
    What advice would you give someone about to travel abroad for the first time?

    To all you seasoned travelers, do you remember the first time you went travelling, solo or with friends, and what you learned from your trip that you would want to share?

    One of my most fundamental lessons is that when I travel with others, there is rarely a substitute for good company. When things go terribly, they become funny. Missing flights, losing luggage, having your clothes and belongings wash away with the ocean tide, are some of the funniest and best memories when you look back on them with friends and can laugh.

    That, and knowing that smiling widely and rubbing your belly doesn't translate to asking for a Happy Meal at McDonalds when you can't speak the language.

    What advice would you share?

    Mariah
    Be ready for that moment when you can't hear things well whilst on the airplane, so bring chewing gum to help with that
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    The main purpose of my travelling is to explore cultures and cuisine of destinations. My friends and I already travelled around Southeast Asia with the support of Asiagrouptour. Personally,I am very excited about characteristics of destinations I visited. Actually, going with some friends will bring us with more happiness.
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    (Original post by SeanFM)
    Make a list and pack maybe a few days before you leave. Don't want to forget anything!
    Yes!

    Is there anything you think is essential to your packing that you would recommend that might not be thought of in the moment?

    I won't travel without baby wipes! Having a spare few plastic bags, elastic bands, and tissue packet never hurt either-they always come in handy one way or another.

    Mariah
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    (Original post by Napp)
    Immodium is your friend and never forget it.
    A life lesson no body wants to have to learn! Better to be safe than sorry. Great idea!
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    (Original post by Raizelcadres)
    Be ready for that moment when you can't hear things well whilst on the airplane, so bring chewing gum to help with that
    Great idea!

    Is there anything else you make sure to do on planes?

    I'm never caught without snacks (in all situations, but particularly flights!)And especially on long journeys I will always take baby wipes and a neck pillow-which if you turn around can sit under your chin and support your head, making it easier to sleep sitting up.

    I always take one of those collapsible water bottles that are flat plastic when empty. They've gotten through customs every time.

    Thanks for your advice!

    Mariah
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    (Original post by Topdeck Travel)
    Great idea!

    Is there anything else you make sure to do on planes?

    I'm never caught without snacks (in all situations, but particularly flights!)And especially on long journeys I will always take baby wipes and a neck pillow-which if you turn around can sit under your chin and support your head, making it easier to sleep sitting up.

    I always take one of those collapsible water bottles that are flat plastic when empty. They've gotten through customs every time.

    Thanks for your advice!

    Mariah
    Oh make sure you bring something nice and comfortable so you can later change into it, I just change into my pajamas in the toilet and than go on my laptop
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    http://www.articlesbase.com/travel-t...e-7448607.html
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    You can refer at the article :
    http://www.articlesbase.com/travel-t...e-7448607.html
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    In no particular order:

    It doesn't matter if you think you over packed, you will get rid of half of it before you return home.
    Elastic bands are your friends if you are travelling long term and buy things like pasta and rice.
    Don't worry if you run out of money - it's fun, I done it 3 times when I was away. It challenges yourself to find new ways to have fun and eat.
    First trip: take more money than you think is necessary, you will use most of it in the first 2 months.
    Pack light, you don't want to be carrying everything with you all the time.
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    (Original post by spanker)
    In no particular order:

    It doesn't matter if you think you over packed, you will get rid of half of it before you return home.
    Elastic bands are your friends if you are travelling long term and buy things like pasta and rice.
    Don't worry if you run out of money - it's fun, I done it 3 times when I was away. It challenges yourself to find new ways to have fun and eat.
    First trip: take more money than you think is necessary, you will use most of it in the first 2 months.
    Pack light, you don't want to be carrying everything with you all the time.
    Great advice! I always take with me clothes I don't mind throwing away, so by the end of my trip I can leave them behind if I need the space.

    I like what you said about running out of money! It can be fun, like a challenge to see how much of a budget you can survive on.

    Thanks for the input!
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    I always recommend bringing an extension lead! It has been my most useful travelling companion for a while now


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    (Original post by Abby3112)
    I always recommend bringing an extension lead! It has been my most useful travelling companion for a while now


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    Yes! Great idea. Those who bring along multiple socket extensions are always the favourite friend in hostels.

    Thanks!

    Mariah
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    (Original post by Topdeck Travel)
    What advice would you give someone about to travel abroad for the first time?

    To all you seasoned travelers, do you remember the first time you went travelling, solo or with friends, and what you learned from your trip that you would want to share?

    One of my most fundamental lessons is that when I travel with others, there is rarely a substitute for good company. When things go terribly, they become funny. Missing flights, losing luggage, having your clothes and belongings wash away with the ocean tide, are some of the funniest and best memories when you look back on them with friends and can laugh.

    That, and knowing that smiling widely and rubbing your belly doesn't translate to asking for a Happy Meal at McDonalds when you can't speak the language.

    What advice would you share?

    Mariah
    I went to Thailand on my own in July. I'd been abroad with friends before (Amsterdam, trips to London, Kavos, that sorta thing) but really wanted to go to Asia and my friends either didn't, didn't have money etc. so I went myself. I'm already pretty independent but I had to do a lot of research into my trip, what to take in terms of bug spray, any immigration stuff, I also proper planned ahead for what I was going to do when I got there so I had a few full days of tours etc booked before i went.

    I'd never flown international before or had to transfer flights as I'd only ever flown one plane at a time before. So changing flights 3 times was an experience. Again, something to plan ahead, making sure you book with enough time in between your transfers to go through security, pee, get food, etc. and also if you have to run from one end of an airport to the other. I was going Edinburgh to London Heathrow and had to wait about 40 mins to get my plane ticket at the Malaysia Airlines desk, but luckily i had a 3 hour gap in between my flights. however heathrow is HUGE, and each terminal is a bus ride away, so you have to factor that in too. so yeah a lot of planning for that trip! i also hadnt flown for more than 3 hours before, and my flight to asia was just over 12 hours. i had no idea what the flight would be like in terms of getting food, but with MA i got 3 meals for free and unlimited drinks for free too, and free movies tv.

    the only thing was i didnt realise that sitting so long in the air would cause the blood to rush to my feet, so when i finally arrived at my hotel like 27 hours later from my initial flight, my feet had swollen up lol. i was gonna get flight socks but ended up not bothering but totally should have. lesson learned there! all i had to do was lie with my feet up for a while to get the blood to go back up.

    i was also a solo female traveler with comes with a whole different set of worries and things you have to be careful of, but everything went fine for me. asia is a pretty friendly continent so i didnt experience any trouble. the only thing was the face i am so pale and ginger/red haired, so i got A LOT of stares from everyone. but i guess thats what its like for foreign people when they come to the UK.

    traveling is an amazing experience and youll learn so much about yourself and grow, as cliche as that might sound. i did everything on my own and felt really proud of myself for having the balls to go all that way by myself. half my friends are too scared/lazy to even travel to the nearest city let alone abroad, most people were really positive and encouraging about me going, i only had one person try to bring me down by saying "the flights are soo expensive.. and youll get murdered by a buddhist monk" (cos any of that makes sense...) but i ignored them and went on an amazing trip and didnt let fear hold me back.
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    I've done a fair amount of travelling now, including alone and very non-touristy places. Slept rough a few times too. My main things would be:

    Safest place for your valuables is normally in a secure place on your person. Seen loads of people have their stuff nicked from hostels including from supposedly secure lockers, whereas whilst you always hear stories of a friend of a friend who was mugged at knifepoint, the number of times I've met someone who actually says they were mugged is 0.
    At night bottom of your sleeping bag is best.
    Although actually the best solution: don't have anything valuable. Its not just the not losing stuff: its the not having to worry about losing stuff.
    Plastic bags are useful.
    Having a bag that you can just sit on your lap is useful. My bag for 6 weeks in Thailand was 6.1kg. My bag for 5 weeks walking across Spain was 4kg. And those were, in hindsight, much more than I actually needed.
    Don't get too het up about feeling you're being ripped off. Its still worth buying an amazing ornate carving at just $5, even if you suspect the locals wouldn't pay more than $2.
    Equally, don't pay the first price you're told without checking out some other stuff first.

    Oh, and charity work is pretty universally ****. Be very careful who you donate to and for God's sake don't think you as a 17 year-old westerner is going to solve anything by flying out to Africa to 'help'. Not unless you have a very specific skill that is temporarily needed to accomplish something.
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    (Original post by Topdeck Travel)
    I always take one of those collapsible water bottles that are flat plastic when empty. They've gotten through customs every time.
    A water bottle doesn't need to be collapsible to go through security/customs. Just has to be empty :confused:

    (Original post by spanker)
    It doesn't matter if you think you over packed, you will get rid of half of it before you return home.
    ...
    Pack light, you don't want to be carrying everything with you all the time.
    These two seem pretty contradictory? If you're getting rid of half your stuff then maybe you should have only taken half in the first place? :p:

    My position is usually: if you've got your passport, any tickets and your money, anything else you need you can buy. Certainly, bringing spare clothes 'just in case' seems pretty mad when you consider the price of clothing in most of the places people backpack to...
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    (Original post by nexttime)
    A water bottle doesn't need to be collapsible to go through security/customs. Just has to be empty :confused:

    These two seem pretty contradictory? If you're getting rid of half your stuff then maybe you should have only taken half in the first place? :p:

    My position is usually: if you've got your passport, any tickets and your money, anything else you need you can buy. Certainly, bringing spare clothes 'just in case' seems pretty mad when you consider the price of clothing in most of the places people backpack to...
    I packed less than I thought I'd need, but still managed to get rid of half of it by the time I left.
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    (Original post by Chocolatesoup)
    I went to Thailand on my own in July. I'd been abroad with friends before (Amsterdam, trips to London, Kavos, that sorta thing) but really wanted to go to Asia and my friends either didn't, didn't have money etc. so I went myself. I'm already pretty independent but I had to do a lot of research into my trip, what to take in terms of bug spray, any immigration stuff, I also proper planned ahead for what I was going to do when I got there so I had a few full days of tours etc booked before i went.

    I'd never flown international before or had to transfer flights as I'd only ever flown one plane at a time before. So changing flights 3 times was an experience. Again, something to plan ahead, making sure you book with enough time in between your transfers to go through security, pee, get food, etc. and also if you have to run from one end of an airport to the other. I was going Edinburgh to London Heathrow and had to wait about 40 mins to get my plane ticket at the Malaysia Airlines desk, but luckily i had a 3 hour gap in between my flights. however heathrow is HUGE, and each terminal is a bus ride away, so you have to factor that in too. so yeah a lot of planning for that trip! i also hadnt flown for more than 3 hours before, and my flight to asia was just over 12 hours. i had no idea what the flight would be like in terms of getting food, but with MA i got 3 meals for free and unlimited drinks for free too, and free movies tv.

    the only thing was i didnt realise that sitting so long in the air would cause the blood to rush to my feet, so when i finally arrived at my hotel like 27 hours later from my initial flight, my feet had swollen up lol. i was gonna get flight socks but ended up not bothering but totally should have. lesson learned there! all i had to do was lie with my feet up for a while to get the blood to go back up.

    i was also a solo female traveler with comes with a whole different set of worries and things you have to be careful of, but everything went fine for me. asia is a pretty friendly continent so i didnt experience any trouble. the only thing was the face i am so pale and ginger/red haired, so i got A LOT of stares from everyone. but i guess thats what its like for foreign people when they come to the UK.

    traveling is an amazing experience and youll learn so much about yourself and grow, as cliche as that might sound. i did everything on my own and felt really proud of myself for having the balls to go all that way by myself. half my friends are too scared/lazy to even travel to the nearest city let alone abroad, most people were really positive and encouraging about me going, i only had one person try to bring me down by saying "the flights are soo expensive.. and youll get murdered by a buddhist monk" (cos any of that makes sense...) but i ignored them and went on an amazing trip and didnt let fear hold me back.
    Hey!

    That's some great personal insight, thanks for your input!

    Travel is one of the greatest experiences you can give yourself, and I'm glad you didn't listen to people who tried to convince you not to go!

    Flights can be expensive, yes, but, like they say, travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.

    Happy travels!

    Mariah
    Topdeck Travel
 
 
 
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