There are a few things you prepare yourself with before starting the journey. But, most of the times you wish you had know better. The idea is to learn to adapt.
Here’s a short list of things I wish I knew before I started my travel:
1. Traveling is a lot of waiting
You never know how long you’re supposed to wait for the next train/bus/flight. Whether you’re waiting for your transport or you’re on the journey, there is a lot of time for you to kill.
Tip: Carry a book and your favorite playlists.
2. Money matters
Carry enough money that can take you through the whole trip. When you’re visiting a destination for the first time, check for ATM centers, bank branches and keep yourself updated on the current news to check if there any strikes/bandhs.
Tip: Distribute the cash into different pockets in your backpack or carry it in a travel pouch and always keep a security deposit.
3. Traveling light
No matter how less you think you have packed, it’s always too much. Journeying around with excess baggage can reduce the thrill and intensity of your trip.
Tip: Just a pair of (all-weather) clothes and footwear along with minimal utilities should do.
4. Hitch-hiking is very doable
Though we’re always looking to get the cheapest transport to get us around, hitch-hiking is often the most ignored option. Picture this - Sitting in the back of an open truck with your travel companions and sharing a laugh with the locals.
Tip: Give it a shot!
5. Happiness is contagious
Happiness does increase by sharing. When you’re on the road the feeling of joy engulfs you. The state of euphoria drives you through your journey and every moment you experience and every person you come across will share the vibe with you.
Tip: Smile. A lot! :)
6. Luck sways both ways
One moment things are really going your way even when you don’t plan for it and sometimes things don’t go your way even when you try hard to make it work. These are situations where the greatest moments of clarity in our lives will come and when we look back at our journey, the littlest, most unpleasant things have a way of shaping us.
Tip: Embrace every situation as a learning.
7. Tourist spots aren’t really the best places to visit
The most common and well advertised tourist spots are always noisy and crowded.
Tip: Take the road less taken and discover quaint locations that offer a more private experience.
8. New friends are just a conversation away
Never would you ever realize that bonding with strangers can actually result in you making new friends. When you’re traveling you have no inhibitions and you have all the time in the world to make conversations.
Tip: Strike a conversation by asking questions.
9. There are plenty of food options
Apart from eating at restaurants you can either cook for yourself or make a healthy salad.
Tip: Dice up some healthy greens and fruits to make yourself a sandwich.
10. Learning the local language is important
Do you want to know the best sightseeing spots known only to locals? Do you want to savour the most delicious dishes? Do you want to reduce your costs by haggling? Do you want to know about the local culture?
Tip: Learn the basics of the local language.