Lately, my blogs have been about my traveling destinations and experiences. I will get back to that for the next blog, but I decided to list some tips for longer travels for anyone that is interested in pursuing that. Here are my tips for traveling as well as some backpacking.
1) When backpacking take the bare essentials, also recognize that you can get clothing cheap in the third world countries so it is better to underpack slightly on clothes here. Also having things that can double as two outfits is good, such as zipper extensions to shorts/shirts. This is not an exact science and you will get better over time. Here is a site I found useful for this:
2) Finding hostels can be tough, www.hostelworld.com is a great site to use to find them. I would also search on kayak for hostels, and then I'd type them each in to google and check out the reviews. With the reviews, check back on the prices and what you and your traveling partners need/care about, then try to select the one that fits your needs the best.
3) Do not set up dates, for my last trip I realized with just having a one way ticket to Thailand, that I was going to be able to leave when we wanted. Well, when we were checking out flights home, it actually did not cost much more to travel to all the stops I will blog about, instead of just going directly home. This is why I decided to turn the end of the trip in to a backpacking trip. Some stops you will love and want to stay for a while, and some stops you will inevitably hate and want to leave. By leaving yourself open ended time tables at destinations, you make it so you can dictate how the trip goes and where you stay, this is extremely important. We did not have enough time at each stop as we would have liked so we pushed for one month straight to see everything. We absolutely loved it, but were ultimately dead by the end of the trip, and our bodies were very fatigued.
4) VACCINATIONS, this one is huuuuge. It is very very easy to just see the shots you will need and try to get them at the last second. However, immunizations such as Hepatitis A & B require more than 1 shot! Some shot periods take over a month to get administered, and it also depends when you can get in to the offices for appointments. Shots such as Typhoid only need one single visit, but absolutely plan for this ahead of time and do not leave shots for the last second. It is also smart to get an immunization card for the places to initial when you leave so that you have your own records for personal keeping. Budget for the shots, they can be very expensive!
5) Budget your travels, this one is self explanatory, but some people overlook and do it on the go, don't burden yourself if you do not have a tight budget, but give yourself a rough idea by seeing how much the cost of items are in the various countries you are going to are to get an idea of how much to bring/budget for.
6) Bring a money belt for around your waste to protect your valuables, people are always trying to find easy marks in life, and tourists are tops on their lists because they are not as familiar with their surroundings.
7) I believe it is also possible to get prepaid cards with foreign currencies before you leave home. This means you don't have to pay the enormous exchange rates you encounter everywhere on the trip. I am not positive on this last tip, but was told by a traveler that this is the way to go and I will be researching it before my next adventure.
Good Luck at the tables,