Many countries are warning that the current social distancing measures are likely to be in place for anywhere between 6 – 18 months; planes are grounded, borders are closed, and the loneliness of being isolated at home is utterly depressing.
One of the best things about travel is the people you meet, and the friendships you make along the way; the characters you bump into in a bar, and the lifelong friendships you make with people who share your addiction. But you can’t go out and meet people right now.
I don’t agree with social distancing. I agree with the concept, but I don’t agree with the terminology. Physical distancing, sure. This is absolutely necessary right now, and I will gladly do my part to stay at home and remain physically separate from other humans. I don’t want the virus anymore than I wish to pass it on.
But I’ll never stop being social. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to stay social within the travel community, and connect with other travelers, while adhering to social distancing.
Pets form an intimate part of our lives, and for cat lovers who love to travel, it’s often just unthinkable that you would holiday and leave them at home.
Travelling with pets is never easy though, and especially when it comes to cats, they can be quite temperamental on the road. You have to prepare for your trip as you would prepare for a traveling with a child, maybe even more.
There’s no reason these days to have to choose between your wanderlust and your cat, but you do need to make sure you’re prepared. Use the following tips for a safer and smoother experience.
Safety is always a big priority when traveling abroad, and everyone knows the importance of being vigilant and aware of your surroundings; of protecting yourself against tourist scams and threats.
But while most people worry about their vacation being ruined by thieves, or hospital visits, most people don’t think twice about cyber threats.
While it’s obviously important to care about your physical safety, these days you’re actually much more vulnerable to online threats than you are being mugged on the street. Because personal data has become far more valuable than your wallet.
When you consider that the personal data held on just one of your devices includes usernames, passwords, credit card numbers, flight details, logins, etc having this information stolen is quite the nightmare situation.
So without getting too complicated, we’re covering today some of the basics – straightforward, easy steps you should be taking to protect your personal data, every time you travel.
Packing is the one thing that is universal to all travelers, though it isn’t always a skill that comes easily. And, especially if you’re packing for rainy season travel, putting together a bag requires a few more logistics.
You’ll need specific gear, which is often bulkier and heavier to pack, and you’ll also need to ensure you pack in a way which keeps your luggage both safe and dry.
To this end, we’ve put together the following hacks for packing during the rainy season.
Travel can be exciting, but it can also wreak havoc on your body. And one of the biggest problems related to travel is the loss of sleep.
Long flights, changing time zones, eating on the run and not sleeping in your own comfortable bed can all disrupt your sleeping patterns. But in addition to the sleep you get at night, naps can also help you stay well-rested while traveling.
Even if your flight is a few hours long, taking a nap can help. So the next time you have to take a long flight, use these tips for taking naps on a plane.
We’ve written a lot about the ins and outs of using a VPN for travel, and why it’s an absolutely essential piece of tech – and that’s because it legit is essential; something every traveler should have, and treat with the same importance as your passport and insurance.
Because that’s exactly what a VPN is – in most cases it’s both a passport, and an insurance; a passport to information and free access to uncensored internet, and insurance against a cyber attack.
If this is the first time you’ve heard of a VPN, or if you’ve heard the acronym but don’t really know what it stands for, this is a Virtual Private Network – a program you run on your devices which allows you to securely and privately connect to the internet.
The perks of using one as a traveler include accessing region-restricted websites, minimizing your risk of being hacked while using public WiFi, and preventing your bank accounts and email from being frozen.
And while they’ve previously been thought of as ‘a nice thing to have’, now, in 2020, it’s more important than ever to have a VPN.
Famous throughout the world, Japan’s cherry blossoms put on a spectacular show every spring with visitors coming from far and wide to view the incredible sight.
In Japan this season is called “Hanami” which literally translates to “viewing of cherry blossoms” (the flowers themselves are referred to as Sakura). Cherry blossoms play such a significant role in Japanese culture; they are fleeting, short-lived, and cherished for their ephemeral beauty.
The Hanami season begins in March and lasts until May, and whether you’re visiting busy cities like Tokyo or Osaka, or sourcing out hidden parks and temples, pink and white cherry trees will blanket the country from north to south!
But the cherry blossoms are fleeting, and most cities only offer a short window of 2-3 weeks. Tokyo’s cherry tress are predicted to start blooming from March 22 in 2020, with the best viewing from March 29 – April 6.
So, want to learn more about Hanami? We’ve updated our popular guide with dates for 2020, so you have all the info you need for planning a cherry blossoms trip to Japan, and extra fun facts about its significance to Japanese culture.
The idea of becoming a nomad family is inherently romantic, and an idea that lots of households toy with, yet seldom take the plunge.
Of course, it requires a certain degree of courage to take the kids out of school, take a sabbatical from work and travel the globe with your little ones, earning and educating your kids as you go – but the decision can be an incredible one!
If you’ve made the decision to spend time as a nomad family, (perhaps you want to get away for a while you build a house, or just take a year off), we’re 100% behind you – you’re about to give your kids the best education in the world!
Of course though, that’s not to say that the life of the nomad family is all sunshine and smiles. Just as there will be incredible experiences and life-changing moments, you’re also likely to run into your fair share of learning curves.
As such, here are some essential survival tips for keeping the whole family happy, healthy and as far from one another’s throats as possible while on the road!
There are many things to think about when you’re traveling as a student – which destinations throw the best parties, which might further enrich your studies, and, before you leave, making sure your essays are all submitted.
But one of the biggest considerations is your budget.
At home, you’re probably used to taking advantage of student discounts to get you through each week – clothes, movie tickets, transportation – often students get a 10 – 20% discount to reduce the burden on the cost of living.
But this is something you can also apply to traveling!
Many countries around the world (most actually!) offer student discounts, which can greatly reduce the cost of travel. And depending on the country you can get these discounts on everything from flights, to ground transport, and attractions.
House sitting has become a massive movement in the travel community, and we can totally understand why; from luxury villas in the countryside, to modern lofts amidst skyscrapers, and cottages right by the ocean, it’s an incredible way to travel, and sample local life.
An exchange where you take care of someones property and pets while they’re away, and in return are allowed to stay in their home, house-sitting is basically “borrowing the homeowners lifestyle for a period of time”.
Owners have peace of mind that their home and pets are lovingly cared for, and that pets get to stay in their own home, while pet loving sitters experience life in new places, without having to pay accommodation.
Now a massive movement, it’s super easy to find house sitting opportunities all over the world, of all kinds; it’s a very viable way to travel (some people even do it full time!), and while some house-sits might only last a few days, some can be for weeks, or even months at a time.
Taking care of someone else’s home and pets might seem like a dream come true, but you do need to be a reliable, responsible, and committed sitter. And there are some things that you just shouldn’t do.
Business travel is definitely not a holiday. Whether you’re running your own business or working for a company, it’s typically the same routine: check in at the airport, pick up a rental car, and prep on-route for your meetings.
From traveling at short notice, to relying on the hotel iron, and somehow finding the energy to walking into meetings after having spent a tedious day in transit, there’s no doubting that business travel comes with its own unique sets of stresses.
So we’ve put together a guide to reduce that for you!
As exciting as traveling is, airports can be some of the dullest places on Earth (with the exception maybe of Singapore – being in Changi is like discovering wonderland after having fallen down the rabbit hole!) Yes, travel is often about the journey, not the destination, but no one enjoys being trapped in the terminal.
No matter how prepared you are for the airport downtime, armed with a top ten’s worth of airport best sellers and a fully downloaded Netflix hit, it’s still hard to make a layover interesting. Often times it takes all our energy not to fall asleep at the gate!
If you’ve got a long journey coming up, here are a couple of ways you can keep yourself entertained during layovers.
There are many tricks out there for booking the cheapest flight, and a lot has been written about hacking your way to paying less.
In 2016 the advice was to book exactly 56 days before departure. In 2017 we went nuts about mistake fares. In 2018 email subscriptions took off, where you could sign up for alerts of cheap prices, and in 2019, companies started offering everyday travelers access to wholesale airfares.
Over the past 4 years, I’ve written about each and every one of these trends. And each and every year I think: This is it, travel can’t get ANY cheaper. This is the biggest game changer yet.
Because you can only hack your way so far before reaching the bottom. Surely, at some point, there’s no more room for any less. But I’m proven wrong year after year – travel does continue to get cheaper. And a new company called FlyLine has just defined 2020’s cheap flight trend.
By offering virtually interlined flights (I’ll explain that in plain English in a sec), while giving you access to wholesale prices, FlyLine is beating out companies like Skyscanner and Kayak for the cheapest flights, and is the newest way to book flights for less.
You’ve done the easy part; you’ve browsed the best vacation deals online and made a spontaneous last minute booking. But now the clock is ticking, and you have a very short window of time to organize your packing! Don’t stress!
Packing last minute can be very easy if you use the following tips.
It’s important to have reliable transport when traveling, and those who value their freedom tend to opt for the hire car option.
Renting a car offers one of the most reliable ways to explore a city and its surrounds without having to deal with the tediousness of public transport or the money-draining nature of taxis and day tours. However, many people shy away from overseas car rental, thinking it’s too complicated.
Spoiler alert: it’s not!
Renting a car can be an overwhelming process if you’ve never done it before, so to that end, we’ve put some tips and tricks for renting a car like a pro.
It’s easier than it looks, and the perks are amazing!
Service dogs are a vital part of life for many people, as guide dogs and animals trained to alert others. However, in recent years there have been new of laws and restrictions regarding what animals can and can’t board a commercial flight.
This causes confusion for everyone, and owners of service dogs are no exception. Anxiety over this can easily lead to a feeling that vacationing near home and traveling by road might be easier and less stressful.
The good news is that this doesn’t have to be the case. You can absolutely take a service dog onto an aircraft, as long as you can offer credible assurance that the animal is not just a pet, and state which functions the animal provides.
If you’re still worried, though, here are some tips for making your journey as stress-free as possible.
Internet is something we’ve come to rely on as travelers, and anyone able to venture off the beaten path with absolutely no connection is somewhat of a unicorn and deserves our reverence.
Yes, I’ll admit that I’m addicted. I like having constant online access while traveling; to be able to pull up Google Maps when I’m lost in Venice, to make bookings on the go, and stream Netflix on a long haul bus ride.
It’s not easy to find WiFi when you’re traveling, and all the usual haunts for travelers; the airports, cafes, hotels; these networks aren’t safe (you’re very vulnerable to cyber attack when you connect via open networks). So the prospect of traveling with a reliable device in my pocket, which offers constant 4G WiFi where-ever I go, is password protected, lightweight, has a long battery life, and isn’t expensive, well, that’s just made my day!
A portable WiFi device is exactly that. It goes by many different names; you might have heard it called a portable Wifi hotspot, mobile hotspot, portable WiFi, pocket WiFi, portable WiFi router….the list goes on. But regardless of what you call it, here are 6 solid reasons you need one!
For many people, travelling is a way to relax and enjoy a break from everyday life. However, for those suffering from mental health issues, travelling can be rather daunting, and certain mental illness may be exacerbated by the stresses associated with travel.
While mental health was once seen as taboo and rarely discussed, today we’ve started to talk about it. We’re recognizing these sometimes debilitating issues so we might offer support and treatment to those in need.
Because mental illness doesn’t go away just because you’re traveling. And having an episode while overseas can be much more distressing than when you experience them at home.
One in four people suffer from mental health issues at some point in their lives, so it’s vital that these issues are addressed. But sadly, the majority of people are still not receiving adequate treatment, whether it’s due to feeling ashamed of their issues or simply not having the means.
If you’re suffering from a mental health condition, it doesn’t mean that you can’t travel the world, but it may mean you have to do a bit more planning to manage your health.
This article will discuss how you can seek help abroad, so that your mental health illness doesn’t prevent you from travelling. It will also detail ways you can help others suffering from mental health issues.
Hens party, bachelorette; whatever you call it, destination hens parties are in!
It’s traditional to have a girls night out before she walks down the aisle and says ‘I do’, but it’s becoming more common for a hens party to travel, and make it a long weekend, or even a week long party.
So, whether you’re the bridesmaid or the bride, we’ve put together the following 3 tips for planning the perfect destination hen’s do.
Las Vegas is now the only US city where land-based gambling is still thriving, as most casinos elsewhere loose the battle with their online counterparts. Though while Vegas is home to many of the world’s top casinos, people are also drawn by its entertainment; beyond the slot machines, roulette, and blackjack are a huge range of other draws, like outlandish productions, and the chance to rub shoulders with celebrities.
Even though many don’t come for the casinos anymore, most travelers to Vegas believe gambling a few dollars is a mandatory experience; after-all, can you really claim you’ve been to Vegas if you haven’t dabbled in at least a little gambling?!
Being that Vegas casinos draw everyone from high rollers to recreational punters, knowing how to fit in is important if you’re one of those people who don’t usually play at all. So we’ve put together the following dress code.
Whether it’s dealing with tummy troubles, annoying bug bites, nasty sunburns from too much fun in the sun, or simply loads of stress brought on by travelling (it happens!), there are many ailments that afflict travelers.
But what if I told you that there’s a natural remedy that could replace the need to visit a chemist, and mean you don’t have to load up on medications?!
Chamomile is one of the world’s most widely used medicinal plants, once used by the ancient Romans to soothe all kinds of ailments.
While you may be familiar with the calming effects of Chamomile tea, you may not be aware that diffusing undiluted Roman Chamomile Essential Oil can be an even more effective treatment for a wide variety of travel troubles.
An immune system boosting plant that can soothe the gastrointestinal system, make those bug bites stop itching, make that sunburn feel less blistering, and help you relax when seated in that middle seat between two obnoxious airline passengers; ‘Roman Chamomile Essential Oil’ are four words every traveler should know!
There are some impressive research findings to back up these claims, so today I want to share how you can benefit from using chamomile essential oil too, and how to use it effectively and safely.
As tech savvy travelers, we’re constantly stressing the importance of traveling with a good VPN; about the dangers of using public WiFi, why your privacy is otherwise at risk, and the best ways to keep your data safe and protect your tech.
A Virtual Private Network is the most important thing to have for internet use while traveling. It encrypts your traffic and sends it through a secure server, which means you can browse the internet securely and anonymously.
There are many perks of using a VPN, like accessing country-restricted websites (like Netflix), and skirting around Government censorship (like China), though the reason a VPN is actually essential is a matter of safety; using a secure connection means that no-one can hack you to steal data like they could on an open, public network (think free internet in airports, cafes, and hotels).
So, having established that a VPN is right up there with your passport in terms of what not to forget, the following are things you need to know about using one when traveling.