17 useful tips for first-time travellers

Blogging villa guide: 17 useful tips for first-time travellers

Travelling, above all things, is a unique chance to experience different cultures from around the world.  With over two hundred countries in existence, there is no shortage of places to visit. 

Most travellers choose to get out of their comfort zone in exchange for a meaningful and memorable experience of immersing themselves in the language, food, and culture of a place This can be tough for first-timers. There is so much to plan that it can get overwhelming. 

Blogging Villa is here to help. If you are unsure of what to do, here are # tips to follow to make your first travel abroad fun and unforgettable: 

Learn about the culture 

Once you know where you want to go, make sure to research the culture. It will help you prepare and give you an idea of what to expect. Some cultures have specific customs and traditions they follow, so be sure to find out any restrictions beforehand to avoid disrespecting tradition.

To give you some idea, here are some well-known customs around the world:

  • Many Asian countries frown upon public displays of affection. If you’re travelling with a significant other, be mindful of your surroundings and try to minimize PDA.
  • In Muslim countries, people observe many religious customs. If you are planning to visit during Ramadan, for example, then avoid eating in public from sunrise to sunset.

Similarly, if you are visiting a place of worship in places like India, always take off your shoes before entering and do not wear revealing clothes.

Learn a bit about the language 

While English is known to be the most widely spoken language in the world, there are people in several countries that do not speak it at all. This can cause miscommunication. Arm yourself with a basic understanding of the language of the place you visit and try to study some useful phrases.

Words and phrases that are useful to know in their when travelling:

  • Hello, good morning, good afternoon, and goodnight 
  • Please and thank you
  • I’m sorry and excuse me
  • Do you know where [the location] is?
  • I am lost and can you help me.

it is completely understandable if you forget some of them but make sure to list them down. Make sure you keep it somewhere easily accessible. As an extra precaution, make sure you download translation apps that you can use for longer conversations.

Book your flights and accommodations in advance

When it comes to travelling out of the country, you do not want to leave anything by chance. 

Plan your trip long before you leave, at least to the extent of knowing when and where. Make sure you book your flights long before you have to leave to avoid complications. This is especially important when you are planning a trip during peak tourism season since costs tend to spike up during this period.

It is the same when it comes to accommodations, especially when you want to book rooms at bigger hotels. Alternatively, you can check hostels if you want to save your money for something else.

Research the places you want to visit beforehand and plan an itinerary

Having a schedule is important to finalize before the trip so you can maximize your time. If you have only a few days to visit a place, you do not want to spend the majority of your time stumbling around aimlessly. Having an itinerary makes things more seamless. It would allow you to relax and simply enjoy the place you’re currently at without having to worry about what to do next.

If you cannot invest time into doing this yourself, a good option would be to check for available tour groups you can join. They usually have a selection of pre-existing itineraries you can choose from. That way, you don’t have to worry about where to go and how to get there. You can even meet fellow tourists.

Budget your money properly

Budgeting your money before a trip is necessary so you do not spend way past your spending limit. It is good to account for travel expenses. 

Check online the rates for any public transport you might need to get to and from where you want to go.  If you are planning to visit popular landmarks, check if there are any entrance fees and how much it would cost. This would make it easier for when you arrive at your destination. 

Additionally, make sure to include contingencies in your budget just in case you go a bit overboard. However, this is for emergencies only, and try not to use it as much as you can. 

Pack days ahead

If you can help it, make sure to pack your things ahead of time. If you leave it too late, you might forget to bring essential items. Packing early leaves time for you to check and make sure you have everything. 

Pack lightly

This tip goes hand in hand with the previous one. Make sure to pack only the essentials. It makes it easier to go from one place to another, especially if you are travelling alone. 

Bring first-aid supplies

You never know what can happen when you are away from your home so it is good to always be prepared. Accidents cannot be foreseen so it is best to be ready for any type of injury. In line with this, your first aid kit should include:

  • Bandaids
  • Medical alcohol
  • Bandages
  • Disinfectant
  • Thermometer
  • Basic medicine for fever, cough, and cold.

Most pharmacies sell a pre-packed first aid kid that you can buy if you do not have spare time to round these up yourself.

Other things to remember when travelling 

Be careful

Always be mindful of your surroundings. You are in an unfamiliar place, likely with no one you know, so never put yourself in situations where there is a potential danger. Always make sure that you also have your important belongings on hand. Losing a phone or a room key can result in complications that make your trip more stressful.

Keep your passport and important documents with you at all times

Usually used for identification, you have to make sure your passport is easily accessible to you at all times. If you have reservations or tickets to different places you intend to visit, keep it organized in one place to avoid confusion.

Don’t be afraid when your plans change

When it comes to things like this, nothing is set in stone. The important thing to remember is that your itinerary is only a guide. If you decide you want to change an item on your list, then do so. Just make sure that everything else, especially your budget, is accounted for.

When in doubt, check your map

When travelling in an unfamiliar place, it is very easy to get lost. It’s understandable and also easily resolved. Nowadays phones have built-in maps on them that you can use to guide you on your way. 

Try new dishes 

One thing you should not miss when travelling to a different country is to try out the local cuisine. This is your chance to experience the culture through food and get a taste of authentic food 

Take your best pair of walking shoes

You will be doing a lot of walking on this trip so make sure you bring your best pair of shoes. Comfort and functionality should be the priority when considering what shoes to bring. Of course, ‘comfort’ depends on where you are going.

If you are going to the beach, then flats and sandals would be best. On the other hand, if you are travelling somewhere cold, then boots that can keep your feet warm are advisable. For trekking, sneakers will give you more comfort. 

You can always bring extra pairs of shoes, but try to choose multi-functional ones so you can alternate between a couple.

Think carefully about what you wear

This goes hand in hand with the previous item and it is exactly why it’s best to prepare everything beforehand. If you are travelling in a tropical country, then a good option would be to bring clothes with thin materials. If you are going somewhere with colder climes, make sure you bring jackets and coats.

Keep in mind, however, that every country follows different customs. Make sure you check if there are clothing restrictions before your trip to avoid wearing clothes that may be considered inappropriate. 

Do not be afraid to ask around

If you refer back to #, you will notice that we anticipated this. If you need guidance from people around you, then don’t hesitate to ask. If you do not know who to approach, local police officers will be able to help you on your way. If you do not see any around, then other public workers will do.

There is also no harm in asking other locals, as long as you keep in mind the possible language barrier. It is also advisable to be calm and polite when speaking to strangers to avoid miscommunication.

Have fun

Lastly and most importantly, have fun! The whole purpose of this guide is to make sure you solve the most stressful parts of your trip so you can simply let loose and relax once you arrive at your destination. Complications may still arise, it is natural in any situation, but always try to see the positive side to things.

These tips are designed to make your trip seamless and enjoyable. Here at Blogging Villa, our priority is to make your life easier. Make sure to follow them if you want to avoid complications and save on time.

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