Making mistakes is a part of human nature, and that’s perfectly normal because, without it, we won’t be able to learn.
If you don’t travel constantly, you may (or may not) have done a few mistakes that we all fall for. But the thing is we never really realize that it is a problem until someone points it out, and that’s what we are about to do now…
Being a travel guru helps us learn and gain a lot of experiences, we have made countless mistakes, and our job is to tell you what you should not do to avoid having any regret.
So if your next travel experience is soon and you want to take full advantage of it without having a single regret afterward, then here are 10 of the worst mistakes that all travelers need to stop making.
Staying on the outskirts: It is true that staying on the outskirts is comfortable, especially if you rented a car. The hotels are probably even cheaper than downtown. However, you will still have to spend twice the money if you stayed on the outskirts because of the endless use of transportation that you will constantly need.
When we travel somewhere outside our city or country, we have to see new, paved streets and unique places, and these places are rarely found on the outskirts. In general, just stick around downtown to take full advantage of the new culture. Plus, you will be able to go back to your hotel room during the day to rest or take a quick nap!
Spending money on things you can have for free:
– It is best to not take a tour and pay money for it (it could be very boring). Instead, you can look online for websites that offer free tours – they exist. They work on connecting you with locals and showing you the most unique places ever, places that only locals know.
– There is a service online that offers a free place for travelers to stay, and it is called Couch surfing. You may end up finding the coolest people who will help you have an unforgettable experience.
– Many museums offer free entrance day(s) during the week, so don’t miss those opportunities.
– Many supermarkets in the United States and Asia discount food that could expire soon, and sometimes, they give it for free!
– There is an amazing rule in Spain: when you order a beer or any alcoholic drink, you will get free food. It could be a salad, sandwich, and sometimes a small meal… this will save you a lot of Euros on food.
Not reading the user reviews: One of the most important things to do before going to any place is to pay attention to user reviews, especially hotels and restaurants. Not only you will avoid paying money for horrible services, but you may also find great life hacks for cheaper and better places.
There are many websites that can help you find user reviews (with pictures!) from all around the world, including Foursquare, Tripadvisor, and Yelp.
Taking a lot of stuff with you: When you are packing, you pick every item you think you will need, and in the end, you find yourself stuck with a heavy suitcase that will make you hate yourself. Then during your vacation, you realize that you have packed many things that are completely unnecessary.
Does it sound familiar? It is very understandable to think that you need more than you actually do when you travel, but in order to not let our bag to be a barrier between us and the fun, you should be smarter and make sure to pack one or two items from everything (except underwear, of course), and instead of taking many sweaters, just pack a blanket with you: It could be a scarf, a cloth for picnics, and a blanket.
Taking only one credit card or only cash with you: You should never take only a credit card or only cash with you. If you depend on only one of them, then keep in mind that you may lose them. Also, your bank can block your account at any time… you never know!
So make sure to always have cash and two credit cards –at least– with you. Let your bank know in advance that you are going abroad, and try to know where the best places for currency exchange are located.
Not talking to strangers: When we travel with our friends or a group of people we know, we mostly stay closed off from locals and other tourists for many reasons, because after all, we say that we will never see them again, so why wasting time?
Instead, we have to think differently because there is no better way to make friends from other countries. They could truly make your experience way more special and will bring you closer to their culture.
Don’t be shy, your new best friends are out there waiting to get to know you, too.
Doing everything you could to see everything: Once we land, we feel a strong urge to try and see as much as we can, which leads us to go from one place to another without giving ourselves time to take it all in. So slow down, breathe the new air, enjoy the slow walks, and rest well.
Don’t visit two cities in one day only, and try to spend two days at least in each city. Remember that you will never be able to see everything anyway.
Traveling during the high season: The big tourist crowds can ruin any view and any rest, which is why it is important to check the dates before planning any vacation. Make sure to travel in the least popular seasons.
Yes, you may miss a few things, like Rome’s popular Italian ice cream if you went in late fall, but you will enjoy discovering the city without any crowds pushing you around or long lines that waste time.
Not purchasing the tickets online: In order to visit popular museums and places, you may have to wait in line for long hours. But in case you didn’t know this before, there is always a separate entrance for people who already have tickets, which is why you have to always get them online. Basically, you are only a few clicks away from saving a lot of your precious time.
The souvenirs : You can be anything you want, but don’t be one of those two people: the ones who buy ugly souvenirs and the ones who don’t buy anything in the first place. All tourists must go to the flea market where you can find a lot of exclusive and unique things at cheap prices.
Plus, most of them are not made in China, they are originally from the country you are visiting (unless you are visiting China!).
Here is a pro tip: if you found something you love, don’t postpone buying it; do it immediately. Otherwise, you will never buy it and you will end regretting it later.