One of the key themes for those who travel regularly is the idea that you learn more about the best way to do things the more often you travel. While this is all well and good for those who did travel frequently, it isn’t much use to those who only go overseas every now and then.
Someone who falls into the latter bracket recently took to a travel forum to ask serial travelers for some insight into what they wish they’d known before starting out. Here were the eight most helpful responses.
1. Find the Sweet Spot in Planning
One user suggested that there is a perfect spot between pre-planning your trip and allowing spontaneity to take over. They said: “Plan a lot in advance, then forget it when you land. Therefore, you remember what you want to see, eat and experience, but remain open to spontaneity.”
2. The Amount of Energy Changing Locations Takes
One user provided some sound advice for any newbies who were planning a trip that involves several location changes. They said: “It takes an enormous amount of energy and brainpower just to change locations. A lot of young travelers want to visit 10 countries in 2 weeks but you soon realize how disorienting it is to uproot your life every couple of days.”
3. You Can’t Do Everything
One serial traveler said that they wish they’d known before their first couple of trips that it is impossible to do or see everything you envisaged beforehand. They said: “Don't worry about not seeing everything, you literally cannot and don't expect yourself to, think of things as “to-do” next time you go.”
4. Memories > photographs
One person said that they now realize that taking pictures of certain spots isn’t the be-all or end-all. They said: “Taking the time to enjoy the moment and absorbing things has been something I've recently acknowledged is very important. I recently went to Egypt and our guide rushed us a bit through the Giza pyramids, so my main memory is of taking as many photos as I could, rather than standing back and properly taking it all in.”
5. Touristy Stuff is Fun
There are some travelers who bizarrely look down their noses at people who do “touristy” things…while being a tourist. One person, who refutes this notion, said: “Don't be afraid of doing touristy stuff. For example, if I'm going to a big city for the first time, I hit up a bus tour on day one as it gives me a good idea of the layout and some places to come back and visit.”
6. Take Time to Relax
One user said that they had learned the value of simply relaxing while on vacation. They said: “If you’re trying to get from A to B to C to D to stuff as much in as you can, you completely miss the point of the trip. Soak in the vibe, culture, and aesthetic of the place.”
7. Make Use of the Hotel Bar
One person said that they wish they’d known all about how useful hotel bars can be, particularly on the first few nights of a trip. They said: “Hotel bars are a great place to meet other travelers and get the low down on what to do and what to avoid.”
8. The Value of Night Trains
One person said that they wished someone had told them all about night trains before they embarked on their first trip. Explain why, they said: “This month I’ve traveled on sleeper trains and I loved it. You get to travel a great distance while you sleep and the next day you wake up freshly at your new destination.”
More From The Impulse Traveler:
If you're a travel enthusiast, you won't want to miss out on the incredible travel stories waiting for you on The Impulse Traveler blog. Keep clicking through the slideshow to uncover even more adventures that will leave you itching to pack your bags and hit the road. From hidden gems to popular hotspots, The Impulse Traveler has something for everyone, so why not keep exploring? Check Out The Impulse Traveler.
The Best All-Inclusive Resorts in Tulum, Mexico
Whether you’re after a luxury retreat or a bohemian-chic escape, Tulum has various inclusive hotels that will suit you. We will highlight 20 of the best all-inclusive resorts in Tulum. Each provides a unique experience that will leave you feeling revitalized and refreshed.
8 Of America's Ugliest Cities According To Frequent Travelers
When it comes to cities, beauty is subjective. What one person finds beautiful, another person may find unattractive. However, that hasn’t stopped people from discussing and ranking cities based on their appearance. In an online thread where users can rank the “ugliest cities” or ugliest places in the U.S., frequent travelers ranked their top 8, and the results may surprise you.
Pack Like a Pro: These 13 Packable Sun Hats Are a Travel Essential!
When many people think of vacation, they think of pristine beaches with the sun beaming down on the soft white sand. Summer is just around the corner, and with it comes the need for protection from the sun. While sunscreen is essential to any outdoor adventure, a good sun hat can also make a big difference in keeping your skin safe.
10 Countries That Have The Best Food in the World
Living in America and being privy to an exciting blend of multicultural cuisine makes it nearly impossible to choose. But I agree with the number one voted response from an internet polling, Thailand. Everyone should try Yum Neau at least once in their life! Here is how the internet responded to the question, “What country has the best food?”
The Traveler’s Guide to Tortola, Bvi: Everything You Need to Know
The British Virgin Islands, a British overseas territory, which comprises four main islands and 50 + smaller islands, is a popular place to visit for vacations and island hopping. The BVI is a natural paradise and is home to 9 national parks. We discuss everything you need to know before visiting Tortola, BVI.