My Travel Mistakes, Your Travel Tips 

The idea of planning a holiday be it a local or an overseas trip always excite me. I’ve traveled quite a bit and made a few mistakes along the way, so I thought I'd share with you some of the mistakes I’ve made which could be tips for you to think about when planning your holiday. 
The mistakes I have learned are from my holidays and short staycation over the years. Thankfully, each time I do plan to go on my next travel, I learn to not repeat the same mistakes. Just like a mood boards for your clothes or an event you’re planning for, it is good to have one for your travel plans too. It allows you to pen down anything that comes to mind when planning for a holiday and have it all laid out before a trip.

So, here are some of my travel mistakes BUT your travel tips.

#1 Choose the Right Dates

Be it the best dates during a particular season or a period of cheap fares, be sure to choose the right dates to travel. Especially to countries that have different seasons throughout the year. You wouldn’t want to fly half way across the world to a country and have it rain every day now, don't you? Such situations may only limit your experiences of traveling and exploring the city. Trust me when I say this and I say this because of past experience! In 2016, I had travel to Hong Kong in November not making sure of the weather conditions and the season. Right enough, our day in Disneyland was spent under umbrellas and sheltered areas because it rain the whole day while we were there. Yeap, it rain before we stepped in and after we had left! Of course, in certain countries, the weather may be unpredictable, but be sure to do your homework on the season and weather forecasts. This allows you to enjoy fully enjoy your trip.
Another thing to note when choosing the right dates is to try to take advantages of the public holidays. In Malaysia, we have a lot of public holidays in a year. When planning for a trip, if the dates coincide with a public holiday, use that as an advantage so that you would not need to take an extra day of annual leave. 

#2 Travel Platforms

There are so many platforms these days that cater to your travel needs which varies from airlines, hotel and travels websites. It is now accessible from wherever you are. There are personally a few websites that I use to check on fares, hotels and activities or attractions to plan for my trip. If you’d like to know how I find best deals for hotels, air fares and even activities, do let me know and I can have a separate post for it with more details. But in this post, I’d like to share a platform that I think has really good potential as an all in one place to plan your trip. For one of my trips in particular which was quite an impromptu, I checked out Traveloka to plan for my trip and book my tickets. Click here to scout for Cheap AirAsia booking. I usually experiment with different platforms to find the right one that’s suitable for me when look. You can also check out AirAsia booking for discounts and promotions too!
Traveloka 
With their constant growth and presence in South East Asia, this all in one travel platform is all you need to complete your travel plans. From flights to hotels to attractions and activities and even connectivity products, you know Traveloka will be able to do it all at one place. Ease the hassle and time spent searching for flight + hotel packages because they have promotions that is a win-win situation- travel and discounts. Who would say NO to that? Traveloka has established partnerships with domestic and international airlines and has the largest direct accommodation inventory, from hotels, villas, homestays and resorts, just to name a few. And with more than 40 payment options for customers in South East Asia, it makes Traveloka reliable at your fingertips. If you have not tried it yet, this may be something to consider for your next trip.

#3 Travel Buddies

Who you travel with has a lot to do when it comes to planning your itinerary. When traveling with family especially with little ones or maybe older family members, there are a lot to consider. For instance, you need to know if there is going to be a lot of walking, climbing, or long hours on the road. This situations may be quite uncomfortable for both the little ones or the older family members as well. Although most places are stroller or wheelchair friendly, it is best to ensure that the itinerary is well planned out to suit everyone. At the end of the day, you would want everyone to have a good time and not be tired or worn out because of these situations. In other instances, when traveling in a larger group, it may also be quite difficult to accommodate to everyone’s needs and wants, James Thurber said “Two is company, four is a party, three is a crowd. One is a wanderer.” I say, whatever number it may be, as long as you travel with the right people with the same travel interest, it’ll be okay. So, choose the right people you are traveling with and make the best out if it.


#4 Do your Homework

You know that feeling you get when you go on an adventurous impromptu holiday or getaway to a place you’ve never been to? The adrenaline rush because you are exploring places for the first time. Although it can be intriguing going places for the first time as a tourist and playing by ear on you day to day itinerary. But this is something that you need to at least have a rough idea planned out with regards to the itinerary. I get this question a lot: How do you manage to squeeze in so many things in so little days? Well, I guess it’s best to know your purpose of the trip. If the trip is a beach holiday and you plan to do nothing but sit by the beach and read while you sun tan, then your itinerary will be pretty simple. But it is a city holiday and you have a lot to see with limited time, pick a few favourites and plan from there. Yes, I've made this mistake too. I went for a local holiday to Penang. As some of you know, Penang is a food Paradise. Well,  I always do my homework before a trip. From major things like travelling time between each place I plan to visit, to minor things like which places are free and which is not. This is also a win-win situation because you not only plan your itinerary but a vlog timeline *wink wink*.

#5 Budget Allocation 

Planning takes time and so does saving. It is not easy to save when you are tied down with other commitments. My best tip would be to always plan ahead. Impromptu travel plans are fun, road trips or a short staycation out of town, but always remember to allocate a certain budget for each part of the trip – your hotel, activities, miscellaneous and even emergency cash! What I usually do is if I know I am traveling in maybe four to five months’ time, I would actually save a little every month. This is so that at the last minute it would not feel the pinch that much. This also applies if you are going out of the country that requires you to change your currency. Keep a look out on the exchange rate and when you feel that the rates are good, change some even if it is a little bit at a time. It doesn't matter if you do not earn enough to travel, because some people assume that those who travel are well to do because you are able to go places. But, I think that it doesn't matter as long as you save up for your travels.

#6 Packing

Based on where you are traveling to, remember to pack just right. Do not over pack but pack just enough with one or two extra pairs of clothes just in case. It is also good to list down all the things you need to in advance so that you do not miss out anything during the last minute. For instance, I’ve forgotten my travel adapter for countries that does not have the same power plug. In this case, get a good universal adapter that can be used in different countries. Another good tip is to bring an empty water bottle, so that you do not have to spend money on buying a bottle of water everywhere you go. As a beauty junkie, over packing makeup does happen at times. Yes, guilty as charged! This happens especially if it is a local trip that does not have a limited baggage allowance. What I have learned though is that carry something that you can mix and match. These days for make up, I carry only a couple of lipsticks (for day and night) and my favourite all in one palette. Remember my suggestion in earlier, prepare a mood board like planner, to make sure that you do not forget anything or over pack something.

#7 Post Holiday

What I started doing after I got used to traveling was that I always carried a notebook with me. I felt that this is a travel essential because it is important to jot down not only your expenses throughout the trip but also places that you visited for future references. As a blogger, this helps me plan out my blog post or video log ideas. Jotting down your experiences will also be something that you take with you in the years to come when you read your travel journal. It will relive memories and feelings of excitement that you experienced during the trip. A postmortem of  your holiday is also good because you learn what to do or what not to do. And, to see if you overspent or under spent during your holiday.

Okay guys, so that’s seven of my past travel mistakes that may be useful for all of you. Let me know your travel mistakes that are now part of your travel planning! At the end of the day, it is important to enjoy the holiday and make the best out of it. Stay calm because even though you try to plan as much, just remember to enjoy the journey! P/s – Don’t forget to take lots of pictures too! 

Til then, See you at my next post! 
xx

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