I feel quite refreshed when I return to blogging, after a while. It reminds me of a hobby to fulfill. But then I was busy all these days doing everything except finding mermaids, exploring black holes and abusing my country’s biased media. On a serious note, I had been travelling to anonymous beaches, plateaus, mountains…. planets!!!!
I’ve come up with few steps to be taken while leaving for a trip- short or long. Hope the readers find it helpful.
Carry an ID proof: Remember? Even Shah Rukh Khan was stopped at American airports. Now, with increasing security measures and scanned tourism, it has become quite essential; even if you are travelling within your same state or country. You may be asked for it anytime/anywhere. Also, it becomes a necessity if you are required to travel to places requiring special permits.
Pack a First aid kit: While travelling to rough patches be it sea or high Altitude Mountains) or short excursions, always carry a kit which includes basic medics for injuries, fevers or nausea. It’ll help things be in control by the time help arrives. Your wounds won’t heel as fast as Wolverine’s. Carry stuff for sea-sickness or altitude sickness (if necessary).
Be full of charge: Ahem! Excitements apart, make sure you don’t run out of charge on your camera or mobile device. If possible carry a portable charger. Being in network 24×7 aids in staying socially connected; after all, it’s the snaps that are all left, triggering appreciable memories. Let people know where you are going.
Plan/Shortlist venues before leaving: Based on the time (No. of days /weeks) available for your trip, one must plan the diameter of their visits. Know the must-visit sites through internet or other resources and rightly plan for it. That avoids time and budget related escalations. Make sure to include local festivals (if any) in the bucket list. In short, ESTIMATE BEFORE EXECUTION!
Don’t forget your hygiene supplies: Yes, one of the most important aspects. One can’t know what situations they may actually face at the place. Essentially carry a sanitizer, deodorant, a face wash, a torch probably a raincoat (if needed), clean pair of jeans/shorts, toothbrush, undies, etc. This rule applies while visiting a friend’s place for a night out as well. Usually one is hesitant to use other person’s stuff.
Be watchful: Keep yourself mostly to public places, especially at night. Exude confidence and walk purposefully. Check your maps and transportation schedules before leaving your hotel/train/rental car/tourist office. A solo traveler poring over maps can be a mark for unsavory types.
Study the localities: Learn basic phrases! Locals don’t expect you to be an expert, but learning a few basic phrases in the local language will go a long way (Example: sorry, thank you, goodbye, etc). If travelling to a different state or nation, be aware of its rituals so as to stay away from any trouble. Refer the link for more information on a global level: http://www.wonderslist.com/10-craziest-laws-in-world/
Distribute your belongings: By that I mean, please don’t keep ALL your cards, cash at one place or in wallet. If something gets stolen/lost, one could land in a substantial mess, especially if travelling solo. Separately note down your local support’s (i.e. guide, hotel staff) number. That chit helps in case your phone gets lost like MH 370.
Improvise: Do not pre-plan your ENTIRE trip before leaving. This trait shall give you on-spot opportunities to explore things nowhere mentioned/experienced. Although ample hotels are available for online booking, maybe a home stay or hostel can be a cool option sometimes. Eating at ordinary cafes rather than advertised 4-star hotels can be a boon, who knows?!
Ignore all my tips and do whatever you want- It’s your trip. Go where you want, when you want, and for how long you want. Don’t worry about this or that. Make mistakes. Learn. Make more mistakes. Have fun and become a better traveler. At the end of the day, you won’t look back and think “if only I had more miles” but instead “damn, that was a lot of fun.” Don’t limit yourself. Say yes to new experiences. Adventure and exploring the unknown are what travel is all about.
BE A TRAVELLER, NOT A TOURIST
Get lost and thank me later!