We are always asked for our best travel advice and that is that when we tell people that we are travel bloggers, the inevitable questions that follow (in this exact order) are:
- What’s your favorite place?
- What’s your best travel advice?
- How do you make money?
So, it’s time to answer the questions on this list and we’ll take the easy one: what are our best travel tips.
If you have a superior travel tip, please add it to the comments below. We love listening to other people’s tips and tricks!
Our Top 20 Travel Tips
It’s 2 hours before
Speaking once you’re in your destiny.
Depending on the time difference between your destination and your home, this can be very easy or really difficult to accomplish. But if you manage to fulfill it, it will make a big difference in your trip. Forget what time your watch says, just make sure you have a 2-hour head start.
Most tourists do this:
- have breakfast around 9 a.m.
- leave the hotel at 10 a.m.
- arrive at the main attractions at 11:00 a.m.
- have lunch at 1:00 p.m.
- have dinner at 8 p.m., etc.
This may be natural, but it means that you will be constantly trapped in queues and surrounded by crowds.
But if you have 2 hours advantage over the others, you will have everything just for you and your partner (of course). 😎
That’s why our first advice is:
Be the first in the breakfast buffet and you will have the freshest food and the best service.
Be first in line at the main attraction and you won’t have to wait for hours.
You’ll see everything without crowds of tourists, which is especially good if you like to take pictures like us. You won’t have to wait to get a table in the restaurants and you can get the best table in the place.
The only time this advice doesn’t work is if you’re going to a nightclub: nobody wants to be the first person in a nightclub!
We know it’s hard to get up early but it’s worth it when you’re the first to enjoy everything at your destination and still have time in the afternoon to relax.
Eat where the locals eat
Among the best travel tips you can give this is key.
Go to the markets, ask people where they eat rich and cheap and believe us when we tell you that no one knows this better than a local.
There’s an application called Spotted By Locals, which shows you the city guides created by locals. The only bad thing is that it’s pay-per-view.
Seen by locals, it offers suggestions of things to do and places to eat and drink according to local recommendations. The restaurant and bar recommendations are the best, as they recommend places you would never have found otherwise. They often include new openings and hidden gems not normally found as tourists.
Places like TripAdvisor can often recommend expensive and touristy restaurants, and if it appears anywhere on Lonely Planet, it quickly becomes expensive and touristy with the increase in customers.
Find your flights with Skyscanner
We always find our flights using Skyscanner, as it offers so many options on one screen.
We like the way you can search for flights for a whole month so you can easily find the cheapest days.
You can also include nearby airports, as it is often cheaper to fly to an airport on the outskirts of the city.
You can never take enough pictures
Did we tell you we love pictures? So this tip should be among our best travel tips.
We know that many people feel that travelers miss special moments because they are busy taking pictures, but we really don’t agree. Obviously, if your camera is stuck to your face for a whole trip, you might miss it!
But the truth is there’s nothing better than looking back at the photos a few years later and reliving all those precious memories. Photos help you remember every moment and we believe that the more photos there are, the better, just don’t forget to download the camera and enjoy the moment as well.
For us to take pictures so that we can enjoy a moment and photograph it at the same time is a double stroke of pleasure.
This is not only for photos but also for videos!
Use what you would use at home
Many people worry about what to wear and what to pack for certain destinations, but the truth is that you can normally use exactly what you would use at home.
Just because you’re traveling doesn’t mean you need to dress like a traveler. You don’t need to wear quick-drying pants or walking boots or clothing made of sweat-absorbing materials, just wear whatever makes you feel comfortable.
It’s true that travel able clothing is ideal but if you have a tight budget use what you have and you’re done. Enjoy the trip! and note this advice as one of the best travel tips.
Invest in quality travel equipment
This is something we did from the beginning and for which we saved quite a bit before we started our trip with no return date.
By “travel gear” we mean anything from your suitcase or backpack to your 100ml toilet bottles to the camera.
Even if you’re not a frequent traveler, it’s better to buy a suitcase that will last you 10 years than to buy a new suitcase every year. It may be difficult to deliver the cash, but it will save you money in the long run.
Don’t be afraid to go on tours
In these years doing all kinds of trips one of our best travel tips is not to be afraid to do tours.
Many people avoid tours while traveling, as they don’t want to get stuck with a huge group following a giant umbrella. These visits are boring, slow, expensive and generally feel like a school trip.
But not all tours are like that!
We almost always try to do a free walking tour while traveling, as it’s a quick way to familiarize yourself with a new destination, you learn a lot about it and discover some hidden gems.
Free walking tours are a great way to get your bearings in a new city, and if you’re traveling alone, it’s great to meet new people.
In our case they have been our allies in all our trip through Europe to know much more the cities and locate us as locals.
There are many types of tours that you can make from shopping tours to gastronomic tours where you try a small dish of the best restaurants in the city. The tours can also be an inexpensive and easy way to explore the area around a city as you won’t need to rent a car or worry about getting lost.
Many short trips are better than 1 or 2 long ones.
This advice goes to all those who do not see themselves giving up their work to travel the world as we do, and it is something that we also did in their time.
If you lack annual vacations but still want to travel a lot, it is much better to take many weekends and holidays instead of the traditional “big vacations”.
We all love the big holidays, but when you only have one per year, it’s a long wait until the next one comes back. (We know this from our own experience)
Fill your year with many short trips so you always have something to look forward to and constant breaks from daily stresses.
We found this study in the Daily Mail which shows that frequent weekend breaks are more relaxing than a great holiday.
If it says so in the Daily Mail, then it must be true!
Paying extra for small luxuries pays off
The small luxuries could not be missing among our best travel tips.
When we travel, we like affordable luxuries and for us that means splashing in some areas and saving in others, such as low-budget flights but luxury hotels.
But there are some small luxuries worth paying for.
The small luxuries will be different for everyone, but for us they are things like a good couple massage at a famous spa, a show in Las Vegas or staying at the Hard Rock Hotel in Panama.
Don’t rule out what’s around the corner
We all want to travel to distant lands and exotic destinations, but don’t discard what’s in your backyard. Once you start researching, you’ll probably find that there are hundreds of amazing options close to home.
You’ll save money on transportation, you’ll save time, you’ll have so much fun, and it’ll be easier to book spontaneous trips when you’re not far away.
Don’t rule out traveling within your own country either, we value our Bolivia very much and that’s why before our trip we make sure to get to know as much as possible of the heart of the south.
Stay close to the business people
Whether you’re at the airport, taking a train or a cup of coffee, stay with business travelers instead of vacationers.
Business travelers know what they’re doing:
- pass quickly through security
- order quickly
- board a plane quickly and are usually very quiet.
- Families and tourists are noisy, indecisive, slow and often don’t know what to do or where to go.
This advice applies especially to airport security!
You’ll appreciate having this advice among your best travel tips 😉
We are always talking about the importance of packing light, as it makes travelling much simpler.
You’ll save money on checked luggage, you’ll save time at the airport as you don’t need to arrive so early or wait for your luggage on the carousel, it’s easier to move and you’re less likely to lose something.
You also realize that you don’t need as many things as you think!
It took us a long time to learn the art of light packing, but once we learn we will never travel with so many things again.
Recommendation: Make a list of what to pack to make sure you don’t overdo it, but don’t forget anything either.
Remember there are more good people than bad
As you travel, you will meet people from all walks of life with different backgrounds:
- We are all very different, but we are all human and share the same core values.
We help people in danger (even if we don’t speak the same language), we take care of children, we are kind to older people and respectful of everyone.
Never be afraid to ask for help, as someone will help you. Don’t be afraid to smile and greet or chat with random people. There are bad people in the world, but there are more millions of good people than bad.
Keep a record of your travels
Whether it’s a thick diary, hundreds of photos, a quick line in a notepad or an Instagram feed full of photos and legends, keep track of your travels.
When you’re doing amazing things, you think you’ll remember it all your life, but it’s amazing how quickly you forget it. You’ll be grateful 10 years from now.
Remember that traveling is tiring
We have no idea why going to the airport and sitting on a plane for 4 hours is exhausting, but it is.
Whether you’re sitting on a:
- getting to your destination is exhausting.
Keep this in mind when planning your trip and take some downtime to relax when you arrive.
For us the first trip around Europe was very exhausting because of the amount of transport taken.
Make an itinerary
When you’re on vacation you don’t want to follow a schedule so we’re not talking about a minute-by-minute itinerary here.
But make an approximate itinerary of the main things you want to do each day to make sure you see all the highlights. There’s nothing worse than going home and feeling like you got lost and didn’t do everything you wanted to do.
Don’t spend money on souvenirs
This is something that cost us a lot to learn since we were fanatics of collecting images and key rings of the places we visited, but believe us your pocket will thank it.
This learning had to be one of our best travel tips because if you’re like us you’re sure to buy a souvenir that will sit on your desk or shelf for about a year and bother you to clean it.
It looked nice in that authentic market, but once you got home you realized that it had a “made in China” sticker (and you were in the U.S.) and it doesn’t match anything else in your home.
You could give the souvenir to someone as a gift but, let’s be honest, it will only go through the same process and for sure it will be kept and forgotten in some drawer.
If you want to decorate your home with memories of your travels, take pictures and put them on the walls: they look much better than snow globes and Russian dolls.
Hide cash in different places
Cash is king all over the world. To cover your ass in an emergency, be sure to hide some bills in different places.
We recommend at least a couple hundred dollars in value. If you lose your wallet, your card stops working, or the ATMs run out of cash, you’ll be glad you did.
These places can be:
- shoe inserts
- a toiletry bag
- around the frame of a backpack
- even sewn behind a patch in your purse.
Trust your instinct
This applies to everything from feeling like you’re in the wrong row at the airport to not feeling comfortable sitting next to that creepy guy on the train.
Always trust your instincts and write this down among the best travel tips you’ve ever received.
Sometimes your instincts are wrong, but it’s not worth the risk, especially when it comes to ordering food from a menu where you can’t read a word.
There’s always a way
Nothing is impossible. If you have trouble going somewhere or doing something, don’t give up. You just haven’t found the best solution or you haven’t found the right person. Don’t listen to those who say it can’t be done.
Perseverance is worth it. We cannot tell you how many times we have been told that what we want to do is not possible and yet here we are traveling with no return date and more than 22 countries already traveled. 😉
Only to prove later that it is possible and we are succeeding.
Take note of our best travel tips and discover your own, never forget to say the magic words that open the doors to any destination: hello, please and thank you.
Enjoy the trip and don’t stress too much, let things flow.
We could make this list of infinite tips but tell us in the comments: What travel advice would you add to this article?