Absorbed by a new job and the bubble of London, the travel blog has been somewhat neglected. A few people have asked me to write new posts and quite frankly I have ignored these requests. Why would I write about the ordinary? This morning I had toast instead of porridge. Wow.
However, I have also received some messages from people asking for ‘travel advice.’ I’m no travel agent but I’m always thrilled to speak about travelling and my experiences – some of the things that I got right… and about some of the things that I got oh so very wrong. What should I pack? Do you think this will be a good route? How do you make friends? How do you budget money?
As I have mentioned in a previous post, I have now written a travel book. It is half journal and half advice for first time solo travellers. Amongst some words of encouragement, it’s full of light-hearted anecdotes, all written in a tell-it-how-it-is fashion. (It ain’t all pretty). The advice chapters are as followed…
Should I leave my job?
What countries should I visit?
How long should I go away for?
Should I travel alone?
Top safety tips for solo travel
Travelling alone as a woman
What to pack?
What not to pack
Planning versus spontaneity
How to make friends
How do deal with your own company
Mind over matter
Learn to say yes
What to do when you miss home
What to do when you think ‘This isn’t for me…’
How to budget
What I wish I’d have known
How to avoid the travel blues?
What do the others say?
A part of me wants to just post all of it now, but I’ve got to be strict with myself and continue to edit and continue to sweet talk publishers. Hopefully one day it will be on the shelves and part of the E-book family. One can dream.
I think it is allowed that I share the title with you though. ‘GO.’
Because that really is the advice in a nutshell. GO. If you are considering some kind of adventure, however big or small, just go. It’s always easier to think of a million reasons not to do something.
And for the messages that I have received from people either considering going, or about to jet off, I will happily share with you the advice that I collected from some of the friends that I met whilst backpacking this year…
Jackson, 22 (Somerset, UK)
Don’t travel to find yourself, travel to find everyone else.
Jade W, 25 (London, UK)
Backpacking is one of the most exciting experiences you will get in life, and whether you realise it or not you’ll be growing and changing as a person with every encounter you make. So whether it’s trying exotic food, talking to people you don’t know, or solo travelling for the first time, throw yourself into every situation and really push yourself, even if it’s completely outside your comfort zone, because you will get so much more out of the experiences you didn’t know you could do.
Hannah, 25 (Leamington Spa, UK)
Always take a pack of playing cards.
Harry, 23 (Leicestershire, UK)
Live in the moment and absorb all that you can.
Sophie, 22 (Leicestershire, UK)
Do things that scare you.
Annie, 22 (Worcester, UK)
If there’s something you really want to do while you’re travelling don’t let anything stop you from doing it- whether that be fear, money etc, etc. For most of us travelling to these places is a once in a lifetime opportunity and you don’t want to come back with any regrets.
Georgia, 22 (Melbourne, Australia)
Wherever you go, don’t leave without a bottle of water and a lip balm. There is nothing worse than feeling dehydrated and having dry lips!
Brit, 22 (Melbourne, Australia)
Always travel with a power board. That way you only need one travel adapter but can charge multiple things from home at once.
Matt, 27 (Birmingham, UK)
Speak to everyone you can, you never know who you might meet and who could become a friend that you will keep in touch with forever!
Emily, 21 (Surrey, UK)
Never buy the backpacks that only open from the top.
Jess, 24 (Peterborough, UK)
Embrace whatever seemingly strange situation you will often find yourself in as they create the best memories to share with people later on.
Margaret, 22 (Nova Scotia, Canada)
Keep your plans flexible because some of the best memories come from the things that you never expected you would do!
Martin, 25 (Carlisle, UK)
Make damn sure you never come away thinking, “I should’ve done that.”
Aimee, 30 (Manchester, UK)
Things never quite go the way you expect – be open to following wherever the path wants to take you.
Sarah, 28 (London, UK)
No matter which country you go to, always take an umbrella! It doesn’t only get rainy in England.
Maja, 22 (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Go to the rainforest in Australia. Stay there for more than just one night, so you really get to experience being away from the world and all it’s stress and social media.
Fred, 24 (Surrey, UK)
Don’t do too much coke. It’s all fun and games until the heart palpitations kick in.
Robin, 23 (Sheffield, UK)
Never sleep in too late. Get up and do things. You can sleep when you’re old.
Daisy, 29 (London, UK)
Invest in a decent bag – it’s basically your life-line for the trip. Make sure it’s not too full when you leave home as you’ll want to buy things on your travels.
Jade R, 24 (Stratford-upon-Avon, UK)
Never trust a fart in Asia.
Connie, 22 (Durham, UK)
Just wing it.
Dirk, 30 (Germany)
If you are in love, never talk to an amazing girl who will confuse you as much as hell.
Marvin, 20 (Switzerland)
Don’t plan too much. Let it happen.
Eilidh, 21 (Scotland)
Don’t follow the same trip everyone does just because it’s seen as the ‘normal’ backpacker route. If you want to go somewhere, GO. If there is somewhere you don’t fancy, ‘DON’T GO.’ It’s your trip, so follow your heart. Also, don’t get drunk and ride horses.
Luke, 28 (Hertfordshire)
Keep putting yourself in new positions to make new memories.
Christopher, 24 (Wirral, UK)
Remember, you can always come back!
Anne, 19 (Winnipeg, Canada)
Imodium is NOT a solution or cure; is it merely a final, desperate act for survival.
Jade E (Neath, Wales)
You’re never truly alone.