Vacations are supposed to be relaxing, but it’s the process of getting there that can stress you out. From the flight, to the hotel, to packing the right things, how can you possibly stay calm?!
Worry not jet-setters, there are things you can do before and during your trip to help make everything easier. Check out this list of the 12 best travel hacks before you prepare for your next trip.
1. Take photos now, remove people later
If you’re someone who’s always dreamed of taking photos that are unobscured by tourists, then this hack can finally fix that problem. Now, when you’re standing in front of the Colosseum, or the Eiffel Tower, those lines of people taking up space can be deleted, using this lifeprotip. “Put your camera on a tripod; Take about 15 pictures about every 10 seconds; Open them all in Photoshop from File->Scripts->Statistics; Choose “median.” Voila!
2. Pack an empty water bottle
We all know you can’t take a bottle of water through security at an airport, but what about a bottle? If you bring a plastic bottle with you (empty, of course) you can fill it up on the other side. This way, you’ll have water for the flight, without the huge cost. And you’ll also be able to use the bottle for the rest of your trip.
3. Pack materials that dry quickly
A huge suitcase is not the easiest thing to maneuver, so instead, choose to pack light, and be careful about materials. If you only bring a few things, you can wash them in your hotel room and leave them up to dry. Then you can re-wear the clothes again. Materials that dry quickly > bags full of dirty clothes.
4. Book the aisle and window seat
If you’re traveling as a pair, choose the aisle and the window seats instead of two seats together. Often, if the flight isn’t full, no one will opt for the middle seat, so you’ll end up with the whole row for just the two of you. And if the flight is full, the traveler will most likely be willing to trade seats with one of you so you can sit together.
5. Screenshot your maps
Google maps is your best friend, if you know how to use it best. When traveling out of the country, make sure you look up your route before you leave the hotel–i.e. while you still have wi-fi. Then screenshot a photo, or multiple photos, to look at later if you get lost. This way, you won’t waste any data, and you won’t have to buy a map book.
6. Board the plane first
Those annoying people shoving to be the first in their boarding group have one thing right: you do want to be the first person on the plane. Why? Because there is a limited amount of space in those overhead bins, and if you don’t want to be sitting with your bag the entire flight, you need to get there first.
7. Save a copy of your passport to your email
International travel can be terrifying, what with the stress of having to carry a passport around. Before leaving the country, you should make a copy of your passport and email the files to yourself. That way, in the event that it ever was stolen or lost, you can still identify yourself, and won’t be stuck out of the country. You’ll be thanking your lucky stars for this hack.
OK, it sounds boring, but these accounts are actually a great way to save some cash on your international trip. If you have one, you can get a refund on all ATM fees worldwide, in addition to never having to meet a minimum balance, or pay a monthly service fee. Score!
9. It never hurts to ask… for an upgrade
If you choose to book a hotel, when you’re checking in, ask for a free upgrade. Sometimes, if you’re nice and the hotel isn’t full, they will give it to you. What’s to lose?
10. Or you can rent an apartment instead
Hotels can often be overpriced, and in some places, you don’t really get to experience the actual city because the resorts are so blocked off. Instead, consider looking to rent an apartment or home for the time you’re visiting. Check out Airbnb, Homeaway, or VRBO. You’ll most likely save money, and some homes come with cool perks (like home-owners who can tell you the best non-tourist places to visit).
11. Bring plastic bags
Your mother has probably been telling you this one for years, and it is actually really helpful. Pack some extra plastic bags when you travel, in order to store dirty clothes you want separated, or in case of emergency (like a toothpaste explosion).
12. Pack a power strip
International converter plugs are a pain to keep straight. And if you’re a technology-obsessed millennial, you probably have more than just a phone to charge each night. If you bring a power cord, you’ll only need one converter, and then you can plug all of your chargers into that, which will keep you organized, and make your life much easier.
[Featured Image Credit: photolabels.co]