In first few months away, the homesick feeling was lingering like a bad smell. Thoughts of friends and family moving through our heads at a hundred miles an hour. Trying to get into this “I’m a traveller” thing, isn’t always easy when things go wrong, but 6 months in, I can now confidently say, that these travel tricks we’ve picked up on, have saved the day. (lol Busta Rhymes)
Have a read, note them down because ya never know… they might just save your ass one day too.
ONE – LEARN THE LINGO GRINGO
Learning the local lingo can not only make you look like a cool guy among other travellers, but it will actually help you to get places. Locals always appreciate a little bit of their own langauge among foreigners, even if you say it wrong.
1. Figure out which langauge is spoken in the country you’re in…this shouldn’t be hard
2. Google these basic words: “Hello, thank you, good evening, can I have a beer please?”
3. Practise, practise, practise. Don’t be afraid, get out there and give it a go!
Note: If you’re interested in learing more, download the free app “Duolingo.” Perfect for learning a new language while travelling. I’ve been giving French a crack and I’m almost fluent like Brad.
TWO – KEEP YA BEERS AS CHILLED AS YOU
This trick’s great for all those times you find yourself with a warm beer, stuck without a chilly bin or fridge. Desperate to get that brew as cold as possible, whilst fighting the quench for thirst? Here’s what we learnt from a Swiss chap, while having this exact problem on the coast of Portugal. You’ll need a few specific materials that shouldn’t be hard to find – toilet paper or a paper towel, cold water (tap or sea water will work) and of course, your chosen beverage.
1. Dab a little bit of water on the bottle
2. Wrap the paper towel or toilet paper around the bottle to fully cover it
3. Drench the bottle with water to ensure the paper towel sticks
4. Place it in the shade and in the direct line of the wind
Leave it for 30 mins and you’ll soon be drinking cold beer while the other suckers are still trying to find the chilly bin. Note: if you have no shade or wind, dig a hole in the dirt or sand and cover it for 30 mins.
THREE – FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS
No, this trick isn’t about being sexual with your friends while travelling. (though if your up for that, go for gold). But more like getting in touch with friends who are living overseas, and then benefiting. We’ve got amongst this and it really works.
Would you rather stay in an average hostel for 20-30 Euro a night? Or message that friend you haven’t seen for a while and sleep on their couch. Take option 2…Travelling is always better when it’s with your mates. We stayed with Dani in London, Ben in Montpellier and even with my Aunty and Uncle who I’d never met, in Beziers.
1. Plan where your off to
2. Contact your mates in each city and see who has a couch (or room) big enough for your poor ass
3. Most importantly, don’t forget to contribute in some way or another, money, cleaning, food, booze or company
All currency is usually accepted and appreciated.
FOUR – DE PLUGGING JANDEL? WORRY NO MORE
Ever found yourself walking down the street, fist pumping in the club or chilling around the house when your favourite pair of jandals, flip-flops, thongs…whatever you wanna call them, de plugs? The pair that you’ve come so far with? The pair that’s supported your feet through endless summers without fail? And then…just like that…the plug pops out on you? Well fair not, this wee trick will resurrect that pair of Havianas that you so badly cherish.
1. First you need to push the plug back through the hole
2. You’ll need to find a safety-pin, paper clip or if you’re desperate, a screw
3. Push the pin or paper clip through the rubber plug so it creates a hold on the bottom side of the jandal
This will guarantee another 3-4 weeks wear of those good old jandals before they pop out again. If your super desperate like I became, use a screw and drill it through the already made hole from the safety-pin. Works a treat!
FIVE – EARLY BIRD GETS THE WORM
How many times have you been to that “must get a photo here” spot and its full of thousands of funny looking humans, with six-foot selfie sticks?! If you’re all about that photo life then listen up, this will be right up your alley.
1. Figure the best route to the location
2. DO NOT SNOOZE, get up on your first alarm
3. Leave the house before 8am, get there before the crowds and get that photo!
SIX – LAY OUT YOUR CLOTHES TO PACK…THEN HALF IT
You will ALWAYS take too many clothes when you go overseas…trust me. No one wants to be that guy, running down the road, late for the ferry, with a pack that weighs 30kgs. If you listen to this next trick, you’ll not only give your poor shoulders a break, but you’ll save yourself a whole lot of space in your bag. I promise you, you’ll thank yourself for this.
1. Lay your clothes out in piles of each type of item.. undies, singlets, jumpers etc
2. Lay out your pack next to it
3. Go through each pile and take some items away
4. Repeat step three
By now you should be weighing lighter and far better off. This is harder for females as they just want to take everything, but if Leah left the country with an 18kg bag…you can too. You might feel like you’ve got nothing to wear, but you’ll scrape something together trust me.
SEVEN – DON’T FOLD, ROLL
While we’re on the topic of packing, here’s another good trick for ya. Roll your clothes when packing, don’t fold them. You’ll not only reduce the chance of getting those unwanted crinkles, but you’ll actually and most importantly, find yourself with more room. This trick has saved us, well never fold again!
1. Know what your necessities are, see trick 6
2. Start rolling, big stuff first, as tight as possible
3. Pack as you go, pushing everything in tight
4. Roll valuables into your clothes for protection
Following these four steps will ensure everything fits snug.
EIGHT – NEVER GET CAUGHT WITHOUT CLEAN UNDIES
This ones for the true travellers among us. When you’re travelling, washing your clothes isn’t such regular thing, I’m talking going a month without clean clothes. So…what happens when you run out of undies? Well this tricks a goodie and if you listen up, you’ll never find yourself going commando.
1. When having a shower in the hostel, hotel, campsite or ocean, don’t forget to take a dirty pair of undies in with you
2. Lather that pair of grundies up with soap
3. Rinse the undies and make sure they’re clean as a whistle
4. Don’t forget to finish washing yourself
Remember to hang them up on your hostel bunk or jammed in the window of your van. Do this and you’ll always have at least one clean pair of undies. Nailing it!
NINE – DON’T OVER PLAN
Planning a trip can be exciting but at the same time stressful and who wants to be stressed on their travels? We found spontaneous travel decisions, can lead to some of the best experiences this world has to offer. So follow these steps and you won’t be let down.
1. Plan a little, but not a lot
2. If something spontaneous pops up, then Nike…just do it!
A good tip here is to hire a car or scooter when you can because you find so many little gems off the beaten track. We’ve also met some amazing new friends from having no set plan and being able to just follow suit.
TEN – DON’T BE LAZY
If you’re like us, letting yourself go is a hard fact to face, but it’s just what happens when you start that travel life. Although you’ll find yourself a few pounds heavier and losing muscle at a rapid pace, you CAN help the cause. Its simple…just follow these two steps.
1. Do not catch the bus if the distance is walkable
I know you’ll be feeling lazy, but take it from us, walking 20kms in a day, will help with that new diet of bread and cheese. Tip: Make sure the health app is activated on your phone, this will tell you how many steps/kms walked in a day. You’ll be pleasantly surprised how far your feet will take you.
ELEVEN – WHATS COOKIN GOOD LOOKIN
Right this last ones probably one of the best money savers you’ll find while travelling. Moral of the story? Eating out swallows your money, so cook while you can and wipe out any of those fancy restaurants.
1. Start by having breaky at your accom every morning instead of going to a cafe
2. Get used to instant coffee and stop buying it
3. If you’re at a hostel/bed & breaky that includes breakfast…then steal yourself an extra croissant or piece of fruit to keep you going throughout the day
4. If you have a kitchen…use it!
5. If you do eat out, share your meals and don’t over order
Its Christmas time, so this is a little gift from the team at FREE & ADDICTED. There’s no doubt that one, if not all of these tricks will come in handy at some point during your travels. Share these tricks around and make up some of your own, were all here for the same reason…to travel the globe as care free as possible, enjoy.
Bryn | free & addicted
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