Traveling is something that fills you with excitement up till the brim and if you happen to be travelling to a foreign land then that cup just flows over the top. It is a daunting task to travel alone to the unknown there are different barriers to face, language and cultural being the most daunting to overcome. But since you have made up your mind which itself bear a testimony to your will power then listed below are a few tips that will come to your rescue if you wander away from your course. Amidst all this, it is advisable to completely lose yourself but still be able to find your way back home not just literally but figuratively as well.
10) Books for dummies
If the main language is English then this gap might not bother you much but if you are going to place where hardly a few know English and say the others speak in a completely different language rather something that you are not really familiar with, then you are in a bit of a language problem. Get a book for dummies; join a language crash course that could teach at least the basic greetings and every day conversational skills so you do not end up in a sorry situation. Once settled find a local who can interact in your language and let them be your language guide. But honestly moving without any prior preparation to get over the language barrier might leave you regretting the decision altogether.
You eventually will move out of hotels right. I mean you wouldn’t spend the rest of your days holed up in a lodge or something ever worrying as to when you will run out of money. Ditch the idea go house hunting find a place that is tailored according to your needs, be economical in your choices. Take a stroll down the locality, weigh your travelling options that includes the nearest sub or bus station you wouldn’t want to fix yourself a place only to realize that your economical purpose was totally knocked out by the transportation system, now would you? Find a roommate, do car pool, share a few rides not only it will help you get familiar with the locals but you will eventually learn to survive.
Get your money matters sorted out way before you have applied for your visa. Keep an eye on the exchange rate. It will be a pity if it took a huge tumble right before you took a taxi to the airport and you ended up cancelling the plan itself. Have multiple options open. Don’t be caught carrying too much cash lest you want to spend some quality time with the authorities. Use debit/credit card or PayPal and ING for international clientele. It’s advisable to travel to an unknown territory with someone you know or have an acquaintance on the other side. Contacts nearby may come in handy not just for financial SOS calls but even to tackle your boredom and help you pave the way out of the ‘moving’ to a new place jitters.
No matter where you go there will always be an odd case with a racial undertone unless it’s your first planetary exploration (then it’s advisable to keep away from everyone and everything). Lame humor apart safety always comes first, you can’t be very sure of what media has to portray or the internet forums have to discuss. Safe haven is not promised to you on a cheque so better be braced for any situation. Take self-defense classes, stay away from the shady areas, and do not go about striking camaraderie with every Tom, Dick and Harry that you meet on your way. The universal angelic friendship association sounds like a fascinating idea but in the end it is just utopic.
6) Couch surfing
I just came about by this one through a friend and it comes in very handy. Couch surfing is a term those modern nomads are familiar with, it is basically renting your couch or a spare bed to a traveler but it is not only restricted to that. If you don’t have a bed or a couch to let them surf on you could probably give them your time. Couch surfing is the best way to get to know people. Find a host or be a host and you will know about the place better than any travel book. Although there is always a flip side, many complain of their bitter couch surfing experience but if you take a few caution and get to know your host well before joining them and have a good sense of judgment then you are in for a memorable joyride.
Smartphones have given a whole new dimension to traveling. GPS and various travelling apps make sure that you never ever get lost. So what are the most basic apps to download before you embark upon your adventurous journey? Translator, Travel Organizer, Where, urban spoon, poynt and YP are some of the must haves apps on your download list. Used sensibly your smartphone could be most loyal and best travelling companion. Keep the little feller charged, some spare batteries may prove to be very useful, add to it a universal charger or power strip (the world conspires against travelers by altering things).
Keep in touch with everyone back home, be never bored, bookmark the places you travel to often, tag some landmarks so you can always find your way back home.
The world should be glad that they have a maximum baggage weight limit or the planes would have taken off with the luggage sans passengers. So you have this limit and you have to make sure that you fit all your essentials within that limit. The decision as to what to take and what to leave becomes so tough all of a sudden. Am sort but you should probably think about ditching that teddy you thought you’d clung onto in case you felt homesick. Do not pack things up on an emotional quotient make a list on the order of requirement with the least required at the bottom, also get a bigger notepad, and by the time you are done strike that last 10 off your list because you will realize you can do without them.
It is a bummer but if you have family doctor and you are dependent on them then it might be little difficult for you as you will have to make room for your prescription and also add your doctor on your Skype chat list for virtual diagnosis while we are it also get Skype credits if you haven’t done it already because you probably underestimated its usefulness. If you fall sick often then be extra cautious because no one would want to spend the rest of their staying period calling doctors for appointments and getting prodded and pricked. Also ditch the universal prescription which you could buy in any pharmacy seriously the analgesic are all the same but if you any special needs then better be prepared then be sorry and sick.
When my friend went to the visa office and forgot to bring along his passport. I knew right away that I should probably attach all his ids and documents to his body via some high-end sub-cutaneous medical procedure or on a less serious note constantly remind him till he has boarded the flight. Where ever you go you should definitely I underscore MUST carry all the required documents with you. It will be a universal gaucherie otherwise. And with lack of any personal experience you can’t surely come here looking for advice. So yes end story “Documents top that ‘carry along’ list”
See everyone makes a list telling you what to do what not to do but nobody probably tells you that while you are at it you shouldn’t forget to enjoy yourself. Being homesick is allowed but that doesn’t mean you miss home till you have boarded the flight back. Go out explore, your reality could be someone else’ dream do not let it go down the drain flushed by your whining tears. If people are stranger to you, you are also a stranger to them and the conversation work both ways. Don’t be scared to explore but don’t make a fool out of yourself as well. There are distinct lines between losing yourself and being lost, see that you don’t blur them.