Barcelona Skyline

Unsolicited Travel Tips

While waiting for my return flight from Barcelona (via Zürich) I jumped on Twitter to dump a few things I’ve learned in the last year of travel. Instead of leaving my thoughts there to disappear into the ether I thought I’d collect them here. 1 While by no means a travel expert these are a few things I picked up that serve as both a reminder to future me and might be helpful for you as well. YMMV and all that.

  1. If you bring something to entertain you while hanging out in your hotel room (like a tablet) leave it behind. You’ll never have time to play with it.
  2. If asked to go out into the city by instead of staying in the hotel – even if you’re tired – do it. Regret makes for a terrible story.
  3. Don’t use your local phone service overseas. If possible, unlock your phone & get local SIM. On this last trip I paid $15 (Euro) for gb from Orange. AT&T, my home provider, wanted to charge me $120 (US) for 800mb.
  4. Pack extra socks. Lots of socks. Change them midday. Your feet will thank you (and your nose too).
  5. Travel light. Roll clothes. Don’t check a bag. Don’t take lots of toiletries. Unless traveling to the Sahara, just find a store. Being able to just get on/off a plane without checking/picking up a bag is amazing.
  6. Go away from the city center. Use public transit. Ask locals for dining suggestions. None of this is that scary. It will make your trip even more unique and interesting.
  7. iPhone users: Turn on Low Power Mode and keep it on. You don’t need push email/notifications when you’re on a trip! This means longer times between charges (more time to look up at the place you’re in and less time looking down at your screen) and no need to scramble for a charger.

  1. Montreal, Panama City, Rapid City, Lyon, Mexico City, and Barcelona in the last 1.5 years is a crazy amount of travel for me.