Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Travel Mistakes You've Done So Far

Amateur tourists or seasoned travelers on short or long-haul flights heading to local or foreign destinations can possibly make mistakes during their trip.  We don’t want these simple mistake to bring bigger travel problems on our journey.  What’s important is learning from these experiences, knowing travel tips and learning how to avoid them.

Know when to follow custom, rules and be trusty.

During my 2 week vacation in South Korea, it will be my first time to take a KTX.  I never know there was an area for luggage before you go to your seat, so carried my luggage with me on the assigned seat.  On Day-1, the subway assistant with the food cart was probably concern that I don't have enough space on my seat and was trying to tell me that there was separate area where I can leave my luggage.

On Day-14, after 4 KTX trips, this day would be my fifth and last transfer on KTX, this time it is S-train going to Busan.  I left my luggage on the luggage section.   
After 2 hours of travel, when I’m about to get off the train, my bag is missing. I lost it.  The train officer helped me look for it from first car until the last car, then left the train without my bag.  We headed to the subway office to check if there are reported lost and found luggage.  Since there are no CCTV inside the train, it will take some time to find it.  After half an hour, we headed to the police station to report a stolen luggage.  But the good thing here is that I was able to get it back a day after.  (Still in time for my flight back to Manila)  

  • On long distance travel, make sure that you have a few set of clothes with you on your hand-carry bag.  
  • Have a GPS tracker on your bag in case get lost.  
  • Place your luggage somewhere that you can always check or see if your bag is still there.   
  • Always have a photo of your luggage, so you can physically describe it to the police station.

Transportation Cards

On my trip to Nagoya, I forget to bring the Icoca and Suica card. So instead, I bought another card. 
Tip: There are many transportation cards in Japan, previously it is used dedicated to specific prefecture.  But this is not the case now, you can use these cards even if you are on different city.  So that makes it cheaper to pay for only 1 card, top-up value multiple times and you can re-use the same card as long as with travel budget from Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka to Fukuoka (except JR lines). 

On my trip to Japan, I forgot to call my credit card provider to notify them about my travel advisory.  Which means, I can't go on hoarding or shopping on that trip.

  • Have a checklist of things to do before your trip.
  • This does not only count for credit card, but you should also be calling ahead ATM bank provider for your travel notice.  This will make your card ready or enabled for international withdrawals.

Train Map

On my Fukuoka trip, I missed to have a copy of the train system connecting to Nagasaki, that’s why it was hard for me to figure out which transfer to take when coming from Saga.  I just remember it only from the station, "Oops! How come I missed to prepare that one?" 

  • Download JR maps prior to your flight.  
  • Download local city subways for public, private and government lines. (i.e. Fukuoka, Saga, Nagasaki, etc.)

Travel Packing Mistakes

On my trip to Sydney during pre-winter season, I'm still in NAIA when we have to pay for over baggage fee.  Did I pack too much?  Oops, another mistake! As a paranoid, I always bring extra set of clothes, but this made me lost the opportunity of buying returning gifts.  

Now, when trying to be a light packer, I should stop bringing more and settle for what I have.  Finally I realized that I can buy on the destination anyway, I just have to make sure that I can still carry them back and refrain on paying those fees.

How to pack light? Bring those that are wearable for more than once, can easily be washed, dry-up easily, and can match with other set of clothes.  Bring those that can be thrown at the end of the trip or those that are disposable.  Bring enough and do not bring too much of something. Do not bring those that can be bought on your destination. Once you have settled your first phase of preparing on the clothes to wear, bring only half, leave the half behind. 

Inspired by Samantha's entry