Whether you are old or young, there is nothing like the feeling of strapping on your backpack and heading off into the great unknown on a backpacking adventure. If you want to make sure your trip is one you will remember for all the right reasons, here are some tips to keep in mind.
It is always a good idea to take as little as possible when you go backpacking. Remember that you’ll be lugging your backpack around with you every day, and it can be a real hassle if it is too heavy. Keep it to a minimum and you’ll appreciate it when you arrive in your destination.
It makes sense to purchase backpackers insurance before you leave home. If you are going for a long period of time, look for a dedicated backpacker or long-stay policy, and then you will know that you are protected.
The most important thing that your policy should cover is emergency medical assistance including repatriation cover. If you plan to partake in any adventure sports, make sure these are included within your policy cover as well. You may have to pay an additional fee for this element of protection.
It’s also a good idea to create a card with your policy details including your name, policy number and emergency phone number. Keep this with you at all times in case you are involved in an accident, fall sick or are a victim of theft.
Store important details online
These days you can get access to the internet almost anywhere, so use the cloud as a way to store important information. This could include:
• telephone numbers;
• a scan of your passport;
• your insurance details;
• embassy contact numbers;
• credit and debit card numbers to cancel lost cards;
• flight details.
Keep it all in your email account or a website like Dropbox and you can then access it wherever you can get the internet.
Get any vaccinations you need
In some exotic destinations around the world, there are risks of catching diseases that you will not find back home, including typhoid, yellow fever, rabies, and more.
The NHS provides a useful section on travel vaccinations, but you should also arrange to see your GP a few months before you go and they will have all the latest information.
Take care of your valuables
Your valuables could make you a target for thieves while you are backpacking, so don’t flash your cash around, or any expensive items for that matter. Keep valuables locked in the safe in your room or at the reception whenever you stay somewhere overnight.
If you do lose your money, it is a good idea to have some backup options. Take some travellers’ cheques that can be replaced in most places if they are stolen, as well as a backup credit card that you keep separately.
Book accommodation ahead
By booking your accommodation in advance, you may be able to save money and you can also focus on enjoying the journey without having to worry about where to stay. You can always cancel your room and find somewhere else if you want to, but at least you know you have a bed waiting for you when you arrive in each destination.
Enjoy your trip
Backpacking is a real adventure. Just make sure you plan your trip carefully and take the above tips into account. Don’t take any risks when you go travelling, always take insurance, and you will have the time of your life on your backpacking adventure.