Nobody is born perfect; so let’s just admit that we’ve all made at least one of these mistakes in our early travel days or inadvertently still make them, after all to err is human, and admitting to it also human. 😛
1. Over planning or under planning
Yes, at some point before we found our Zen state, we either planned too much, or not at all; now though? We know when to leave the guide behind and when our feet might mislead us into an ‘adventure’ of sorts.
2. Not researching accommodation options enough and subsequently staying at the most expensive or shadiest hotel in town.
There are bnb and alternate accommodation options. Look them up. Book with them, they’re usually affordable and super home-like. Hint hint : you can start by looking at www.roomnhouse.com if you’re traveling to or within India.
3. Packing too much or too little
Guilty as charged. I often can’t figure out just when to say when; usually a bursting suitcase is a good enough indicator. 😛 but over time I’ve let my suitcase reach bursting point, less and less, either by making use of these bag packing hacks, or I just actually carry less stuff – and then forget something vitally important like a sun block at home. Plus I’m like a major hoarder and also very creative with how something will help in a ‘worst case scenario’ (which never happens, to be honest), and that helps in absolutely no way. So figure out -exactly- what you’ll need and leave the worst case scenario out of it all.
4. Forgetting passports/exchanging money at the airport/trying to wing being at the airport on time
Forgetting passports and missing flights happens more often than you’d think. Also airport currency exchanges are basically convenient but also not worth it because they know you need the money, so they charge you a whole lot more than your friendly neighbourhood bank would have.
5. Being a tourist and not a traveler.
The difference is vast, but easy to make up for. Trust me, if you’re always viewing the world from your camera lens and have way too many pictures of sometimes totally avoidable subjects then you my friend are a tourist. If you additionally ignore the locals and refuse to blend with or understand the culture, you my friend are a tourist and a general prick.
Travelers don’t take pictures for their Instagram. Travelers talk to locals and understand the culture by observing it and being open to being a part of it. Travelers also research a little about the place to be reverent to where they go, but no so much that they’ll put the local travel guides out of a job.
My point is be considerate, stay alert, and keep your eyes open – literally. The world is a wonderful place and rookie mistakes will either end up as funny anecdotes or situations where you go back from saying “NEVER AGAIN!” So peace out, and keep traveling!