Travel Tips
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7 Things I’d Tell A New Traveler

traveller

Hope. Anxiety. And Excitement. Such emotions are inevitable for any newbie traveller. I remember when I quit my job to travel and booked a one-way ticket to Bhutan, I was scared too. No one I knew had ever done it before. And to compensate my unpreparedness, I followed a few guidebooks and hoped for the best. I was not just new to travelling but I was confused about it too.

But now, after years of full-time travelling, I have learned the art behind it. And if only I could sit my younger self, I would give him this advice:

Don’t Be Scarednight sky australia

Walking off the beaten path and travelling places you’re not familiar with, might sound a little scary, but you aren’t the first person doing so.  There are hundreds of online guidebooks and other resources to walk with you along the way. And if thousands of people can make their way around the world, and to the place you’re going to, why can’t you. So don’t be scared.

Look Beyond The Guidebook Experiencesriding on top of bus

Guidebooks are helpful. But don’t completely rely on them for shaping your travel memories. They will never talk about the hidden, off-the-beaten-path experiences. For the best information, connect with locals, or speak to fellow travellers. People are always the best information source when it comes to travelling. The best experiences can only be learned, and not studied.

Travel Slowlost mountains

It might initially feel boring to a few, but slow travel is addictive. So don’t try to squeeze your experiences. ‘7 countries in 10 days’, or ‘around the world in a month’ will only give you a handful of photos to share on your Instagram, but no real knowledge of the place. So don’t rush your trip. Make time to lie down under the mountains, or sit in a café. Watch people behave. Slow travelling, is far more compelling, and a lot more educating.

Don’t Carry Too Muchtruck

When I visited Bhutan last year, I carried with me a 90 ltr rucksack – full of stuff that only sat in my bag all across the journey. And I learned a simple lesson the hard way: Pack Light. Don’t carry everything you owned back home. Because if you really need something, you can pick it up on the way. Travelling, moreover, is not only about seeing new places or meeting new people, but a part of it also teaches you about self-governance. You learn to live with whatever little resources you have.

Further Reading: Travel Packing Tips

Go With The Flowconoe alleppey

If there is one thing I believe, it is – a journey is only best experienced when unplanned. Because when everything is planned, and you’re following an itinerary, there is no room for happy accidents. So just go with the flow and let the random moments shape your memories. Let serendipity do its work.

And having said that, I would also like to admit that this remains the most useful travel advise I can give to a new traveller.

Keep Some Extra Cash

Every time I go somewhere I carry some extra cash with me because no matter how well you plan, there are always some unexpected expenses. And disasters, like losing your waist pouch or breaking your pair of shoes, are always inevitable. Carrying extra cash saves you from those disasters, and even give you the freedom to explore a little more than what you initially planned.

Make FriendsBeaches in Goa

I know you’re an introvert. But no matter where you go, there is a network of travellers who want to be your friends – for they might be travelling solo, just like you. So don’t be afraid, just say “Hello” and everything will fall into its place. Ask fellow travellers in a hostel, if you can join them. No one ever says no. Take the first step and you’ll see how easy it was to make friends.

Get People’s Contact Information

When you will start travelling, meeting new people will become an everyday thing. Some people will stick with you for a long time, while others won’t. But if you find someone interesting and worth keeping in your life, make sure you get their contact information, because if you won’t, you will regret it forever. Add them on Facebook or take their email it doesn’t matter, but just find a way to reach out to them if tomorrow you want to.

I regret not asking for so many people’s contact number whom I met on the road. I hate every single thought of letting those new friends fade away in memories.

Be Adventurous

One of the best things about travelling is that it allows you to overcome your fears. When you’re on the road for a long time, you do things that you never imagined doing when you’re back home. This may just be travelling on a train or riding a motorcycle as a pillion. I mean I never imagined myself trying something like Bungee Jumping or Skydiving as an adventure sport, but I did. It is true that both the times I screamed like a girl but in the end, the feeling of overcoming my fear was so great that nothing else can match it.

So challenge yourself. Take risks. Try new things. It is possible that you may not like everything, but in the end, you will appreciate the idea that you at least tried. You’ll come out of those experience more self-confident.

These remain a few things I would tell a new traveller. Do you have anything to add in the list? Any useful travel tip you learned during your journeys? Spill in comments below!

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After my couple of years of corporate career, I left that lifestyle behind, and with it, everything that didn't fit in a backpack. I've learned that this world is too big (and too interesting!) to spend your life working at one place, and that's what inspires me to remain footloose and fancy-free for the rest of my life!

16 Comments

  1. Prachi Holidays says

    Hello, I have a travel company and I think Travel is important for life.
    I like your blog thanks.

  2. rommanne says

    Awesome list Dev – completely agree on pack light and carry extra money (learnt it the hardway!) 🙂

  3. Laveena Sengar says

    The list you have mentioned is pretty awesome and I admire people who take this wonderful decision to travel. It all depends on the luxury of time you are provided with.

  4. I am thinking of quitting my job and travelling the world. What I liked in particular in this blog post was the concept of “slow travel”! This is basically why I want to quit my job – not have to rush and squeeze as much as possible in a short period of time.

  5. Vijay says

    Really useful tips you’ve got there. It is a great decision to quit your job and start to travel. I do not have any close to me that has done the same and I can say I admire these people!

  6. Perfect tips… I kept thinking, this one is the best one… nah… this one…. Particularly travel slow and don’t carry much! Probably great tips that translate into real life well as well 😀

  7. This is good advice! I would agree most with “don’t be scared” and “pack light”. Nothing is more annoying than being weighed down by a whole bunch of things you wish you’d left at home.

  8. Andreea Bujor says

    I totally agree with the 7 things that you mentioned. “Don’t be scared” this should be written on top of travel flyers , people usually missed out a lot because of the fear “of something might happen”, something can happen anywhere at any given time, we are not in control of anything . I had to remind myself of all of this tips at some point, especially to travel slow and enjoy more the experience rather than the achievement of it. Cheers!

  9. I This is really great advice! I wish I had had this advice 12 years back when I went on my first backpack trip… I think the most importants parts are the “Look Beyond The Guidebook Experiences”! and “make friends”… I thinks it’s exactly that, that makes ones travel adventures unforgettable!

  10. Monika says

    I agree with you Dev and I would definitely say the same things buuuut I know from experience that many people would not have the courage to folllow these tips .. most of my friends are so scared !

  11. Absolutely awesome points. I used to travel with the large trolley suitcase and last year I found the pleasure of travelling with just one backpack. I went on 3 day trip with a 27l backpack! Lolz!!! Esp., I agree with your point of travelling slow too…

  12. These are some amazing tips. I especially like Travel Slow, something I have to remind myself of all the time. I am definitely a fan of the slow travel movement!

  13. Punita Malhotra says

    All seven things that you mention make so much sense and I guess all of these emerge naturally as one has starts having the luxury of more time. One also evolves along the way, and learns better ways of travelling deeper.

  14. Nalin Trehan says

    Hi, I liked your blog on solo travel and have placed a similar comment on it.
    I am new to bike travelling though i do travel a lot due to my profession of being a Scuba diving Instructor. I have a thunderbird 350CC bike and very new to biking. Just did some short trips, nothing big but would like to do long trips in my off season. Where and how do I start?
    Would appreciate your comments on it.
    Regards
    Nalin

    • Though I’ve already answered you on my Facebook page, and since you live in Hyderabad. you can do: Hyderabad-Goa-Chikmaglur-Bangalore-Ooty-Munnar, or Hyderabad-Bangalore-Kannur(Kerala)-Alleppey-Trivandrum-Kanyakumari (This is good to drive close to coast) Good luck (y)

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