Travel Hacks: How to Be a Sensible Traveler

First-off everyone should know that as a traveler we become ambassadors of our countries, and any bad name we bring to ourselves while travelling gives a bad impression to the locals about our country. So be on your best behavior on your travels and check out a few steps to becoming a wiser traveler.

  1. Do Your Research

  2. Do your homework and research about the place you are visiting. Start by checking up on the local news find out if there is any threat or dangers in traveling to you destination. Look up if you need to get vaccinated for any disease and take precautionary medications with you. Next research on the destination and its attractions. Make an itinerary on fun things to do or visit. Plan it out over your stay. If you think this is too much of a hassle most countries now have travel-guide Apps which generate itineraries according to your preference.

  3. Screenshot Important Information And Documents

  4. Always remember your hotel, there’s nothing worse than enjoying a wonderful day of sightseeing only to realize that you don’t know your way back to the hotel or worse the hotel name! (Now that’s a nightmare). We recommend taking a hotel business card with you or better yet save the hotel name and address and contact details on your phone.

  5. Learn The Linguistic Basics

  6. Be it language, greetings or culture, always learn the basics. It is rude to expect everyone to know English. Plus being polite and thanking the locals in their language would give them a good impression. If there is anything we have learned from the hospitality industry it is that being nice& courteous goes a long way. Learn these basics in the local language:

    -Greetings -Express thanks

    Learn what goes and what is frowned-upon in the country culturally this could be extended to clothing, handshakes, PDAing and shouting etc…

  7. Body Language Etiquette

  8. Here’s a quick guide on body language no-no’s. When visiting Asia in general it is best you refrain from any sort of physical contact (even handshakes) when meeting women you are unfamiliar with in public. Understand the importance of personal space (no one likes strangers standing too close to them). Additionally the body language and posture you put-out there sets a tone in people’s mind whether they like you and are willing to help you or just drive people away. Avoid these certain hand signs as well when touring Europe, South America, Africa and the Far-East. The A-OK sign, the thumbs up sign, devil horns and Peace sign where the back of your hand faces out. These signs might have derogatory meanings in different places & can get you in trouble when used in the wrong place.

  9. Dress Appropriately

  10. You are visiting a foreign country and the people there have different ideals, cultures and clothing preferences. There are two things to be kept in mind when selecting your holiday outfit: · Be practical and pack travel friendly clothes. This means that you have to keep in mind your destination weather and pack accordingly. A smart traveler pack light. If you will be traveling for a week you don’t have to pack a different outfit for each day. A good staple is a good pair of jeans (it last 3 uses at least) and a hoodie/jacket and of course a few Tees. No flashy jewelry and expensive accessory, you are on holiday a time to relax not to constantly keep an eye on your expensive belongings. · Research the country and identify what goes and doesn’t. If you are travelling to the Middle-East it is a known fact that any immodest clothing is a no-no! Likewise try to avoid shorts (anything above the knee), Cursive or religious imagery on clothing, national flags and anything offensive in general. Try to have a range of smart-casual to casual. Similar ideals have to be practiced when picking out holiday swimwear as-well. Dressing appropriately while away on holiday not only helps you fit in with locals, but it also protects you from standing out to pickpockets and attracting unwanted trouble/ attention. When in doubt, look at what the locals are wearing.

  11. Be Respectful When Visiting Religious And Cultural Sites

  12. What better way to immerse in the local culture than visiting religious or local cultural sights. This is where you experience a world of difference away from the malls and amusement parks. But please be mindful when visiting such places. Show some respect and behave yourself; this means no shouting, running and behaving in an indiscreet manner. Be modestly dressed (women especially try having a stole at hand) and be mindful as some places require you to remove your footwear. There are certain places which is restricted from the public and certain things that cannot be photographed (please ask permission before you do so). It’s best to visit such places with a guide, they will explain the history and cultural relevance and help you through the dos and don’ts of the place.

  13. Photography and Selfie Manners

  14. As mentioned above there are certain things/ places where photography is prohibited. Research and be aware of these locations. Furthermore when taking pictures with local statues and monuments be courteous and don’t do anything to damage said items (like climbing, touching etc…). Another thing to be kept in mind is that more people have died taking risky selfies than by being attacked by sharks. So ask yourself whether the picture (or likes you obtain from it) is worth more than your safety or life?

  15. Try out the Local Flavors

  16. Don’t be the boring kind of traveler that seeks out fast-food franchise chains for their meals when on holiday. Be adventurous and try out the local food, which in are books is the best travel experience (apart from seeing the sights of course!). To be immersed in the local flavors that’s travelling. Now there will be a few hits and misses when it comes to tasting local cuisine. And there is the added dread that you don’t know what you are being served. Restaurants usually have an English menu, or u can whip out your trusty phone and translate in a jiff. But do try the flavors of the world (it’s a must)

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