A Handful of Travel Tips
I started to write, “I love to travel” and then quickly deleted it because I actually really hate travelling: overcrowded airports, bad ventilation on buses, plane food (YUCK), queues – so many queues – and grumpy immigration officials. Traveling is the worst. But, if you travel for work or if you get your kicks from exploring new and beautiful places around the world then it just must be done. I have been on the move since I was fifteen and living my life between Zimbabwe and Kenya. My first job was in travel and I have been in this industry ever since. I love to travel and create epic adventures for other people every day because I do believe that travel can change your life. So, I thought I’d share a few tricks that helps me get through the nasty “travel” bit so I can enjoy the “being places” bit.
1. JUST CALM DOWN. If I travel alone I suffer from mad anxiety the night before. It’s usually a sleepless night mixed with nightmares of missing my flight, and the world subsequently falling to pieces. So I set myself up with as little opportunity to fail as possible – I try to overnight as close as I can be to the airport, and check in extremely early so I have loads of time to make sure I am where I need to be. The less obstacles in my way, the more I am be able to relax prior to travel.
2. PIN DOWN THE ESSENTIALS. For the most part I try to travel with as little as possible. But these are a few items I really do need in order to maintain my sanity on long haul travel:
A full power bank. Because you absolutely do not want your cellphone to die mid-way through wandering the streets of Barcelona reliant solely on google maps to find your AirBnB. Nightmare. Stay charged!
Noise cancelling headphones. I download a full “Sleep Playlist” and tune the heck out. If you, like me, don’t ever sleep on planes then semi-zoned out is as good as it gets. I’ll take it. I just bought this pair from Sony and they are brilliant.
A kindle. Because travel is 100% what my dad calls “Hurry Up & Wait” and the wait is so long. UGH. I try to preload my kindle with some good books ahead of time, but most places have decent wifi these days so you can always browse as you travel. I like the standard paperwhite and mine has lasted 6yrs and counting!
JUST READ AND LOVED
I also recently purchased a small rubber ball that has SAVED MY LIFE! I use it to roll out tight muscles that cramp up as soon as they sense an airplane seat or bed that's too soft. It's my teeny tiny foam roller and I channel my inner black bear scratching up against a treetrunk and go for it! It really does feel great and I'd recommend it as it takes up no weight/space.
3. STAY PRESENT. The world we live in demands information from us every moment of every day. It’s so easy to get sucked in, and when people are picking up what you are putting down on social media it can really take over. To manage this I take a few video clips and photos on my phone, and I load them to facebook and instagram over lunch if I have a quiet minute or before I go to bed. I never load them moment! I also make sure I take just one photo of the thing, or the view and then put my phone or camera DOWN. Unless something dramatic changes I only need one photo for the memory really, I am not a professional photographer on a paid assignment, okay! All these lenses steal your attention and stop you from being totally present. Don’t let them.
Now please fasten your seatbelts and stow your tray tables away, ready for departure.
Safe travels all!