17 Travel mistakes that can ruin your trip

Whether you’re a full time traveler or a weekend tripper – at one point or the other, you are bound to make a travel mistake. Here is a list of travel/ Vacation mistakes that you should definitely avoid, so that you don’t end up ruining your trip

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1. Theft
This is usually ranked the top of worst and most feared travel experiences. You feel violated, alone and like you’ve been punched in the stomach. It certainly can color your experience of a country.

2. Getting Sick

See a travel doctor before your trip, so he can diagnose common ailments of the country, travel shots and medicines to take. I always pack an antidiarrheal & Cipro in my first aid kit.

3. Getting Scammed
No one likes being scammed. Getting scammed is exactly the same thing as someone stealing from you, with the exception, there’s manipulation, a power play, trickery, they take advantage of your naivete; and sometimes, they can even use bullying to pose a
dangerous threat.

4. Planning Too Many Things
While it’s good to have a general idea about what you want to do but planning your schedule from breakfast to nightcap can end up limiting your experience. Moreover, you risk missing out on places that no one informed you of.

5. Over packing
I know it’s difficult to not pack all your favorite clothes but think about how much weight you will have to carry around if you don’t do this smartly. Additionally, your heavy luggage will restrict you from doing a few things, like what happened with me in Railay!

6. Not Alerting Your Bank before You Travel
If you try to use an ATM located in a new country without alerting your bank, it may appear to them as suspicious activity and they may just block your card. A few minutes of prework can save you hours of pain if you get stranded without money.

7. Not keeping enough time between connections (Flights / Buses / Trains / Boats, etc.)
Back in December 2014, I barely made it to Don Muang Airport from Suvarnabhumi Airport for my next flight because of a bad traffic situation. As I fidgeted nervously on my shuttle seat on the way, I cursed myself for not keeping enough time between these two
flights. I was lucky that I made it on time but I promised myself not to take such risks going forward. It’s uncertain because of immigration delays, traffic jams or arriving at the wrong terminal. Don’t do it.

8. Keeping all your money in one place
If you keep all your money together, then you’re making things easy for the thieves. Do keep some emergency funds in a few secret spots in your hand luggage.

9. Drinking Tap Water
The fastest way to fall sick is by drinking unsafe water. In many countries, tap water may suit some locals because their stomach is immune to it but not you. Be safe and drink bottled water. Check out this infographic that will guide you where it’s safe to drink
tap water.

10. Picking a Wrong Travel Companion
Traveling with someone who has a habit of cribbing, whining and being judgmental can turn your experience into hell. I recommend you check out this post about picking the right travel buddy, or just travel solo.

11. Not Carrying Comfortable Shoes
Your feet will hate you if you don’t carry at least ONE pair of comfortable shoes. Make them happy, because they have to take you everywhere! Even if you’re going for a bachelorette trip to a resort, you need comfortable shoes. I usually carry only one pair of flip flops and one pair of super comfortable flat sandals. I add on a pair of trekking shoes / ninja boots depending on the destination.

12. Being Clueless About the Local Laws
Yes, you may be from a country where it’s walk around with a can of beer in public and drink it, but in several other countries, you can get arrested for this! Do you want to spend a night (or more) behind the bars for this lack of knowledge about the local laws?

13. Getting into a Fight with the Locals
This is common sense but I see it happening very often, especially when people get drunk. Do not ever get into a fight with a local wherever you are. You don’t want that local to bring a group of his friends to gang up against you.

14. Being on Your Smartphone Most of the Time
Not only do I see many people who see the beauty of their surrounding mostly through the lenses of their smart phones, but also people that spend a lot of time checking their social media accounts while their partner enjoys their meal or the view alone. Your Instagram or Facebook will still be there when you’re home but this view won’t be. Do click some good photos for memories but try not to be an obsessive photographer.

15. Not Backing Up Your Photos
How many times have you heard of incidents where people lose all their travel photos ? Well, carry a pen drive to back them up. Or better, save them on cloud! Nowadays, most of the gadgets have this option. Unless you have an unlimited 3G plan, I recommend you
select the option of auto backup only when there’s a WiFi connection.

16. Not Setting a Realistic Travel Budget
Traveling costs money. You may run out of money in the middle of your holiday if you don’t set a correct budget for your trip. Airfare, buses and hostels are obvious, but you must consider smaller expenses such as ATM surcharges, camp ground fee, etc., to set an accurate travel budget. Set a correct budget so that you know how much to spend per day on an average.

17. Traveling With a Bad Attitude
Even if you’re not making any of the above mentioned mistakes, you WILL end up ruining your trip if you travel with a bad attitude. Don’t let little things bother you. Travel with the right attitude, enjoy the local culture, different food and even long queues on a
day with bad weather. You’re lucky if you’re traveling. Smile!

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