Why are travel hacks the perfect things for any and every traveler? If you are like me, I thought another worry! computer being hacked or website being hacked, …..now I have to worry about something else being hacked! But, alas, this millennial now knows that these hacks are actually hints, or tips or advice whatever. They are fabulous! Having traveled as a travel blogger all last year and part of the year before to countries all over Asia, Europe, Iceland and more, this is the one area I am an expert!
1) Never pay for water at the airport.
These days, I never leave home without my Dafi water bottle. The bottle is equipped with a unique carbon filter, which removes chlorine’s taste and odor from tap water. Shop here.
2) Always send a copy of your travel documents to your phone (ie passport, license)
You’ll thank yourself if you’re ever a victim of theft or loss. It’s also worth taking a screenshot of any journey confirmations. If you’ve booked any flights, buses or trains, whether you’re on your phone, laptop or tablet, make sure you screenshot them while you have Wi-Fi or internet access so you can access them when you’re no longer connected. So much easier than lugging around printouts. As travel hacks go, this is one you don’t want to ignore in case anything goes wrong.
3) Be strategic in your seat selection when booking a flight.
When not flying solo, I always book an aisle and a window, as there is a large chance no one will take the seat in the middle, and voila you have the row to yourself! Use a seating app like Seat Guru to guarantee the perfect placement. There is nothing worse than a long haul flight being next to the lavatory.
4) Always check flight prices when using a private browser.
Never check for fares without first going into Incognito mode. (Here’s a step-by-step guide to going private in Google Chrome.) Airline websites store your cookies, which gives them too much intel on your travel plans. If they know when you want to fly, they can automatically raise their rates accordingly. Don’t give them that power.
5) Download the google translate app, to help you with any language barriers, when traveling internationally.
This travel tip comes in handy when you travel to a country where you don’t know a lick of their language. Google Translate lets you translate any word or phrase right from your phone. You can even download a language onto your Google Translate app to use as reference without utilizing any data.
6) Set travel alerts for months in advance.
I live by hopper!!! Okay, so when is the best (i.e. cheapest) time to book a flight? Sign up for a travel app like Hopper and let them alert you when the price is right. The truth is that there’s no “right” time to buy your flight. Not six months out. Not four months out. Not two weeks ago. Experienced travelers set an alert for great deals and let those deals come to them.
7) Roll your clothes when packing.
This was definitely a game-changer, for this over-packer.If you’re not doing this already, you’re wasting a lot of valuable real estate in your suitcase. Always roll, never fold and stack. This will allow you to double your wardrobe for your next cross-country outing. It’s a total space saver.
8) Use packing cubes.
While we are on the subject of space saving. Packing cubes enable you to compress your belongings into easy-to-pack sizes that better use the full capacity of your suitcase. You will end up with less wasted space.
9) Pack a first aid kit.
Thanks mom! It’s easy to remember things like aspirin for headaches. But what about slightly more serious accidents, that don’t exactly require a visit to the ER? Pack Band-Aids, anti-bacterial cream, stomach antacids, cold meds, and throat lozenges. It’s not planning for the worst, it’s planning for the small health annoyances that at most require a pharmacy visit (but who has time for that on vacation?).
10) Don’t always book flights round trip, check your options.
Sometimes you can score cheaper tickets when you shop for one-way tickets using multiple carriers, instead of only searching for round-trip flights with the same company. This also allows you to apply reward miles to one leg when you don’t have enough to cover a return flight.
11) Bring a universal adapter, when traveling internationally.
Different countries have different plug points. Use a universal adapter to fit your electronic devices.
12) Call your credit card company before traveling abroad so they don’t lock down your account due to suspicious activity.
There is nothing worse that going to pay and it being declined. Credit card companies, often see international charges as a sign of fraud. Be sure to call before leaving and let your credit card provider know you are planning to travel.
13) Order a “special meal” in advance of a long-haul flight.
I always go vegetarian, as I am “iffy” of plane meat. lol. Most major airlines will offer the option to order a special meal when you book your flight—these include vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, kosher, vegan, and low fat.
14) When traveling internationally download a currency converter.
I like to use XE currency converter, available in the app store. It allows you to easily check the rates, and convert from whatever source of money you are accustom to. It definitely makes shopping a lot easier.
15) stash a mini duffle bag in your suitcase.
I always bring my Longchamp duffle, as it folds into a tight envelope. Let’s be honest—everyone needs a souvenir (or many souvenirs) from their travels, but figuring out how to bring them all home can be a challenge. Pro tip: Instead of trying to fit them all in with your luggage, just bring a separate bag to pack them in. Consider a duffle bag that’s small enough to be used as a carry on (and just make sure you aren’t putting anything in it that might be flagged by security).
16) Ensure a good night’s sleep with melatonin.
The difference in time zones, can really affect a goodnights sleep. Our list of travel tips wouldn’t be complete with a travel hack on how to combat jet lag and different time zones. Melatonin is a natural sleep aid.
17) Pack a power bank.
Picture this: You’re in the most scenic place you’ve ever seen and are about to snap the most insta-worthy pic of all time. You grab your phone—only to realize the battery is dead.
This doesn’t need to be a travel catastrophe if you one of our most important travel hacks—pack a power bank. These nifty portable batteries can be used to charge your mobile devices when you don’t have access to an outlet and charger.
18) Make it smell like a fresh flower
Let’s face it: depending on how long your flight is, your suitcase doesn’t always smell like a rose when you first open it. Solve this unpleasant side effect of packing by placing a bar of your favorite soap or a dryer sheet inside your bag. Your clothes will smell fresh and clean when you arrive.
19) Create a frequent flyer account on every airline you travel with.
There’s absolutely not too. Start racking up those miles, every little bit counts, towards that next vacation.
20) Mark your bag fragile.
No matter what’s in your bag, mark your baggage as fragile, even if it’s not. Airport baggage handlers are notorious for being rough with traveler’s goods. The chances of airport workers tossing your bag around in a free for all are much slimmer if it’s marked fragile, and your items will be protected from unexpected damage. Also it ensures your bags to come out first in the batch.
21) Weigh it!!!
I can’t tell you how many times I learned the hard way. Picture this girl bent over in front of flight counter, pulling out her undergarments and other apparel so not to be up-charged for overweight luggage.Weight your bag before you go to the airport to make sure you are within the limit. The last thing you need is to have to pay an extra charge for a bit of extra weight.
22) Bring a scarf!
It can also double as a blanket or bunch it up and make it into a pillow. It doesn’t matter if I am going through the desert in Egypt or on top of a volcano in Indonesia. Scarves are the original do-it-all accessory. Honestly, a scarf can help you out in so many situations.
23) Keep a pen in your pocket.
As far as life hacks for traveling, this is the most overlooked but simple tip. You might need to write your name down on a document or fill in your landing card while you are on the plane or as soon as you land, especially if you are flying internationally. Just keep a pen with you, to avoid having to beg your neighbor for one.
24) Earn Money While Traveling.
In today’s market, there are a hundred different ways to make money while you’re on the road. Teaching English to children or adults or freelancing on platforms like Upwork are just a few of the options.
25) Shop Like A Local
When it comes to everyday items like fruit and coffee, find your local market and head there instead of the nearest supermarket chain. Especially in places like Asia and South America, you’re guaranteed to find everything you need at a reduced cost. Also helps to avoid tourist traps!!
26) Don’t Change Currency At The Airport.
You’re bound to be busy in the weeks leading up to your departure date but make sure you leave yourself time to exchange currency at your bank. They’re notorious for giving the worst exchange rates and for a little extra effort you can save yourself a significant amount.
27) Pack plastic and zip lock bags
You’ll never know when these will come in handy; whether you need a place to keep wet swimwear, dirty laundry or leaking toiletries.
28) Pack two full outfits in your carry on.
Fingers crossed your luggage doesn’t go missing, but if it does happen, you’ll be prepared. If you’ve got space, pack your swimwear, another pair of shoes and plenty of underwear too. Be sure to pack all your chargers and tech equipment as well.
29) Put plastic wrap under bottle lids.
To prevent spills, put plastic wrap under your bottle lids before screwing on the lid. Then put them inside a ziplock bag. This is such a simple hack to prevent spills.
30) Fly late for cheaper prices.
Fly late for cheaper prices. Red-eye flights, the ones that leave last in the day, are typically cheaper and less crowded, so aim to book that flight if possible. You will also get through the airport much quicker at the end of the day.
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