10 best travel tips of all time

Become the savviest traveller around with the ten best travel tips of all time.

10 best travel tips of all time

Become the savviest traveller around with the ten best travel tips of all time. Learn what to pack, how to dry your clothes and how to take a good photo on a cruise with this handy list.

One: Take a compass
If you are going to a town with an underground railway, take a compass. Often the underground will have many different exits and, in cities such as new york set out on a grid system, it can be hard to get your bearings when you return to street level. If there are two underground exits at the same intersection it can be almost impossible to work out which way you are facing. Save yourself time and energy by taking a small compass with you. You can even take a keyring compass - it doesn’t have to be perfectly accurate, just good enough to give you a general idea.

Two: Learn to dry your clothes
If you’ve done some washing in the sink of your hotel room, getting your clothes dry by the following morning can be difficult without the know-how. To dry your clothes:

  • get a towel from the bathroom
  • lay it out flat on the floor
  • lay your wet clothes out flat at one end of the towel
  • roll the towel up, starting at the end with your clothes
  • walk all over the rolled up towel
  • unroll the towel
  • move the clothes to the other end of the towel and repeat

This technique will remove most of the water from your clothes, allowing them to dry in record time.

Three: Take the right camera on a cruise
Newbie cruisers may not realise that, when sailing past historical sites or attractions, the cruise ship doesn’t get very close. You can be miles away from that landmark at which you were hoping to get a good look. Taking a camera with a good zoom serves two functions: firstly, it allows you to get a good shot for your photo album, even if you’re a long way away, and secondly it can double as a pair of binoculars, as you can look at the screen and zoom in to get a closer look.

Four: Pack velvet soap
Packing a bar of velvet soap, or any other pure soap bar, can save a lot of space in your amenities kit. Velvet soap can be used to clean your body, wash your hair and even your clothes. One small bar can last quite a while, which means you can leave large bottles of body wash, shampoo and clothes wash behind.

Five: Swap your towel
A towel can be one of the least space-efficient items in your luggage. Towels take up a huge amount of room, so why not substitute your regular towel for a compact quick-drying towel? You’ll have more space in your bag, you won’t have to put it away wet and many hotel rooms offer fresh towels anyway, meaning you’ll only need it as a backup.

Six: Choose a world adaptor
No matter where you are travelling, when you next purchase an electrical plug adaptor choose a world adaptor instead of a country-specific one. If you are travelling through multiple countries you will save space by carrying just the one adaptor, and it can be a lifesaver if you end up somewhere unexpected.

Seven: Take a spare bag
When travelling, most people come home with more than they packed. It’s always a good idea to take an extra flat-pack bag in the bottom of your suitcase, so you can carry unexpected purchases without worrying about running out of space.

Eight: Take a hard container
Following on from souvenir transportation, it’s a good idea to pack a hard tupperware container in your luggage. If you do pick up a delicate souvenir or gift, transporting it can be stressful. Packing breakables in a hard container, padded with your socks, is one of the safest ways to transport them. You can fill the container with your socks and underwear to save space before you purchase that Ming vase which you’ve been coveting.

Nine: Avoid airport delays
To give yourself the best chance of avoiding delayed flights, catch the first flight of the day. At the start of the day the aeroplanes are waiting for you to board. As the day goes on flights often get later and later. Avoid the hassle by simply catching an early flight.

Ten: Email your documentation
In the unfortunate event that you lose an important document, having a copy on hand can be the difference between getting stuck in a country for days or moving quickly through the bureaucracy. Take a photo of your passport, including the information page and all your visas, as well as any tickets and medical checks, and email the photos to yourself. You will then be able to access the photos from any computer in the world, as long as you have internet access. It’s also a good idea to print copies of the photos and leave them tucked into the lining of your bag, especially if you are travelling in a remote area.


    To make a comment, please register or login
    24th Feb 2014
    Further to tip 10 - I scan all my relevant documents (passport, iitinerary, travel insurance policy, credit cards and so on) into PDF format and then secure that PDF file against being opened by anyone other than me by means of a stong password. I then not only email the PDF to myself at Gmail, but I also save the PDF file onto a flash drive that in turn is hidden in the lining of my bag.
    24th Feb 2014
    Make sure you check the computer after using that flash drive when necessary. We left ours in a hotel never to be seen again. Had to change all our credit cards etc and notified DFAT re our passport.
    24th Feb 2014
    Loss of a flash drive is a pretty trivial matter if the file is protected by a strong password. In any event it's always much wiser to only ever use your own device (laptop, tablet, smartphone etc) when accessing the internet overseas and and entering sensitive personal data (internet banking, for instance). In many parts of the world internet cafes and/or cheaper hotels are notorious for having data mining programs secretly installed on their public access computers for the sole reason of collecting the user's personal data. Better to be safe than sorry... your own device is the way to go.
    25th Feb 2014
    For the men ,Don't take a big can of shaving cream but a tiny container of shaving oil lasts for a few months.Also i never leave without my new small Helga amazingly powerful torch
    25th Feb 2014
    Or, if you don't fancy a soap bar, tiny containers of your favourite moisturiser, shampoo, etc. Also in NYC, if you pop up from underground where you can read a street sign, it's handy to know that even-numbered streets usually run east, odd numbered streets west.
    26th Feb 2014
    A variety of different size Clip lock bags are a must to pack. Great for packing wet or damp items, extra protection against lids coming off anything liquid during transit, dividing itms of clothes etc , food storage, ice makers and endless other - worth their weight in gold and the best thing is there's no weight in them!!
    1st Dec 2019
    I have a set of dual voltage travel electricals, double USB charger, small travel kettle, shaver, tooth brush, camera charger etc with the worlds most widespread Euro plugs C fitted to each. These very compact plugs fit in around 136 countries not only in Europe but I have used them in China, Korea, Taiwan and cruise ships. A Euro-US adaptor type 1 provides another 55 counties. Simpler, lighter and cheaper than multi-adaptors. Unless you are traveling the Pacific there is little point in taking Australian plugged equipment. If you mainly travel in America, reverse it and take a Euro adaptor.
    1st Dec 2019
    If your hotel basin plug hole won't seal use a piece of kitchen wrap or similar from a plastic bag or if you are faced with heavy laundry costs or exorbitant charges to use a washing machine, buy a $2 plastic bucket preferably with a metal handle. You can leave it in the hotel when you go or remove the metal handle, compress it to the depth of your suitcase and fill and pad around it with clothing and take it to your next destination. If travelling by car, part filled with frozen milk in cartons or water it makes a great Esky..

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