Travel Tips

Dumb Travel Tips You Hear Too Often (and What You Should Do Instead)


Are you planning to go on a vacation this year? You definitely need one, especially after a two-year no-travel period due to a global health crisis. The internet is flooded with collections of travel tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your travels.

But not all tips and tricks will please you, especially if you’re a traveler that is risk-averse, a comfort seeker, or the checklist-ticking type. This post will give you a bunch of does and don’ts. However, you might have seen some of them before because other travel bloggers are also aware of them.

Most likely, you just skimmed through them when you found their article or, worst still, bookmarked them. Don’t do the same with this post. In fact, this article will give you travel tips and tricks that you might have probably not considered before.

Let’s get started.

Travel Tips and Tricks That You Should Try

The information is meant to make your vacation or trip a bit better or maybe a lot more better.

Read a Travel Guidebook

Some people may discourage you from reading travel guidebooks and recommend travel blogs instead. Unfortunately, people are too busy or distracted to read a guide from cover to cover. However, doing so can give a decent history of the country you intend to visit.

It will provide you with the cultural lessons to help you discover attractions, destinations, events, and festivals, as well as, better appreciate what you will experience. Most travel bloggers and Instagram influencers might not be aware of these details, but the travel guidebook will provide it and much more.

Instead of buying and carrying a heavy guidebook, you can bring along your Kindle version and buy only specific chapters about the place you intend to visit.

Learn the Local Phrases Abroad

Once you have identified where you want to visit, the next thing that people will tell you is to learn some common phrases to help you interact with the locals. This is not true. Don’t waste time studying local terms while in your country. It’s better to learn when you get there.

If you must learn, then don’t go for words like hello, please, and thank you. Learn unusual phrases that will make locals laugh because they find them out of the ordinary. Words that they find hilarious will help you make more new friends because they’re happy to be around you.

In fact, they will be ready to teach you common phrases like hello and thank you as well as how to pronounce them correctly. For example, in East Africa, where Swahili is spoken, Kenyans and Tanzanians will be happy to teach you a few Swahili words like “Jambo,” “Habari yako,” “Karibu,” “Hakuna matata,” and much more.

Exchange Your Currency in the City

It’s important to have the local currency when on vacation because it helps you pay for transport or buy stuff. However, unlike what most people tell you, you shouldn’t exchange your money at the airport. You can get better rates in town than at the airport.

In some countries, currency exchange booths will give you above the market rates to get your dollars. Checking the exchange rate before traveling can help compare rates and avoid being ripped off.

Further, avoid exchanging your money at home; instead, do it abroad, opt for a foreign-exchange –free credit card or withdraw your cash from an ATM. In either of these options, choose to be paid in local currency instead of your home currency.

Obtain the Best Travel Advice from Certain Locals

Often, travelers tend to trust locals because they believe they understand their country more. While that is exceptionally true, most residents have no travel tips to offer because they have a busy daily routine as you do back at home. Further, they might not see their city with the same eye as a tourist, or they hardly explore new places in their town.

However, there are certain locals or ex-pats that can help you. They include people in the hospitality industry such as Uber drivers, foreign ex-pats, and your friends’ friends,

Be Wary of Strangers

People tend to be open to strangers when traveling because they want to make new friends and learn from the locals. However, you need to beware of surprisingly friendly individuals who surprisingly even speak your language, i.e., good English, French, Italian, or Spanish.

These super-friendly people may surprise you because they might be part of a gang extracting money from unwary travelers. They may lure you into a trap, giving you a negative experience. Therefore instead of giving strangers the benefit of the doubt, give them the detriment of the trust.

Additionally, you can politely turn them away to avoid the risk. It’s a lot safer when you approach the locals than when they do it.

Don’t Splurge

Some people think that they can buy extraordinary travel experiences. However, memorable experiences are earned instead. You don’t have to overspend even if you can afford it. Splurging is only essential when it boosts your opportunity of having an extraordinary travel experience or story. Some of these include a direct flight in order to buy time, an expensive meal because you will never have a chance to have it again, paying an expert guide to take you to lovely places that you can’t discover on your own, or getting better sleep.

Choose Airbnbs and Hotels carefully

The rise of Airbnbs in recent years has forced travelers to abandon hotels. However, it’s no longer advisable to use Airbnbs because some hosts view tourists like money bags, there is a lot of dishonesty and more scam at play. In fact, some communities have become negatively affected, which can ruin your vacation.

This is not to say that Airbnbs are a terrible option; it simply encourages you to keep your options open. It inspires you to consider the pros and cons of Airbnbs and read reviews of travelers who have been to your holiday destination and used such facilities. This will help you decide and avoid negative experiences when visiting a foreign country.

Get a Plenty of Sleep

It’s common to hear from other travelers or locals that you should wake up early in order to beat the crowds or seize the day. This is not true unless when you go to bed early. Sleeping fewer hours will definitely make you tired, moody, and close-minded, which can screw up your trip.

Surprisingly, some people are so excited or don’t feel tired, so they may opt to do more during their vacation. However, depriving yourself of enough sleep impairs you, and you will pay for this. Therefore get enough sleep.

Keep an Open Mind

You will often hear people telling you don’t judge people you across when traveling. Judging people is indeed wrong, especially when you don’t know them. That is called prejudice.

However, you need to consider why someone you meet for the first time act, speak, dress, and think differently from you. Because there are no outright answers, you can judge for yourself. In fact, such judgment enhances your understanding and helps you learn about the people you meet during your holiday.

Don’t Avoid Multinationals

People recommend local establishments because they give you local cuisine ad culture. In fact, you don’t need to get anything from Starbucks or McDonald’s if you don’t want to. However, visiting a local one can help you compare the menu with what you have back home. For instance, Starbucks in Canada is not the same as the one in South Africa or Australia.

You may realize that they have unusual flavors and different prices. The chocolate bars in South Africa have a neon green lime flavor but are not the same as the ones in Geneva. The same applies to Starbucks; they don’t spice their coffee the same way in different locations. So it advisable to visit them and same what they’re offering and the prices might be a lot more different than you thought.

In summary, you now have the 10 tips and tricks that can help you start planning your next vacation in Bali in Indonesia, Kerry in Ireland, Marrakesh in Morocco, Bora Bora in French Polynesia, or Matterhorn in Switzerland.

You can now go out and sample what the world has to offer and make your stay abroad worthwhile. When you can come back, share your experience with us in the comment section of this post.


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