Whether you’re a first-time traveler about to jet off into the unknown, or a veteran nomad with over 100 stamps in the passport, there’s always room for a few travel hacks. This list of the top tricks and tips for movers has just that, going from packing shortcuts to nifty ways to reduce the price of flights. Enjoy…
Be flexible with flight dates
Every budding nomad knows just how important it is to save every buck they can on travel. That means getting the cheapest flights on the market whenever possible. And that, in turn, means being as flexible as you can with flight dates. Industry experts note time and time again how weekend travel can be a real bank account buster, while statistics show that flying midweek and returning midweek can save a whole load of dosh on your round trip tickets – that is, if you’re planning on returning of course!
Use a blog to keep a journal
No matter how romantic it may sound, the days of the lonely traveller scrawling profound ideas and sketches of wild feral packs a la Dances with Wolves are all but gone. Shame? Perhaps a little. But there are upsides: digital blogs and journals. Yep, today travellers can opt to keep all of their thoughts and photos and ideas online. That means no carrying bulky SD cards for the snaps, or searching for lost pens in the departure lounge.
Empty your water bottles before security
We all know the new rules about liquids on a flight. Gone are the days when an uber-cheap litre of tasty Polish vodka could just be packed and whacked on-board. Today, it’s all “leave your water bottles here” and “no liquids”. Well, there ain’t no rules about taking empty vessels with you! We aren’t talking about Viking horns or German tankards. We’re talking about simply emptying your water bottle before going through security and filling it up on the other side. (Granted, this one’s no use in a country where you can drink from the tap!)
Roll don’t fold!
Fancy yourself as something of a master packer? Maybe you’ve perfected the art of interfolding, weaving all those Hawaiian shirts and board shorts, elephant-print trousers (compulsory wear for any budding backpacker it seems) and tie-dye bandanas (a personal fav) into intricate matrixes to save just a little extra room in the case. Well, you’re wrong! Sorry to say it, but the rollers have all but won the debate when it comes to how to organise their wardrobe on the road. Not only does stacking your tees and shorts in tight cylinders avoid creasing and crunching, but it also allows you to get bits and pieces into the smaller nooks and crannies of your luggage.
Stick your undies in your shoesies
Child-like rhyming of the subtitle aside, this little nifty trick can actually help you minimize all the space taken up by carrying excess pairs of shoes, walking boots, ski boots and other forms of bulky footwear you’re bound to be lugging as you hop across the globe. It’s a simple idea: pack underwear and socks, or any other type of small accessories (electronics plugs and the like work well), into the space where your feet should go. Sounds simple but you’d be surprised how few people do it. Oh, and we recommend using a bag if you’re the hygienic type…
Scrawl fragile across your bags
Possibly myth, possibly apocrypha, though nonetheless a tempting way to ensure your luggage is both handled safely and comes out of the plane first (nicely minimising any temptation to ride those revolving belts in the process!). Mark your bag with a fragile sticker before check in and some say the folk at the airport are directed to take more care over how they place it and store it, meaning your case will be on top and unmarked when it’s returned on arrival. Sweet.
Email yourself your docs
Lastly: the less-than-exciting one on this list. Emailing yourself any important documents is a great way to ensure your details and the like are accessible from anywhere around the globe. Well, almost anywhere. Granted, this one won’t be the best help if you’re trekking through the jungles of Thailand or scaling the snowy heights of the Himalaya, but it’s a sure bet if you’re a city hopper, where Wi-Fi access means access to all your information, passport photos, tickets and the like at the click of a button.
"Rich is a traveler, writer and filmmaker who's always after somewhere new to go. He's been hopping around the globe since 2011, from Poland to Paris, Mumbai to Ho Chi Minh. He runs several travel sites of his own, from Ski Eastern to Live Krakow to Crabs Move Sideways. When he's not planning his next trip, he's usually listening to 50s jazz, surfing in Wales, skiing in the Alps, or just swigging (too much) great craft beer."
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