15 Best Travel Tips for Planning Your Next Adventure

Everybody loves going on an adventure, but not everyone knows the steps savvy travelers take to ensure their trip is as memorable as possible. Today, we’re examining unbeatable travel tips you should implement the next time you want to level up a getaway. From wearing a fanny pack to the importance of shower sandals, we’re sure you’ll learn a thing or two!

1. Buy Airline Status

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Suppose your everyday spending with an airline’s branded credit card isn’t enough to attain elite status when you fly. In that case, there’s another option: you can buy status outright! While the process is regarded by many as a fuzzy “gray area,” a few websites will allow you to purchase airline elite status to ensure your next flight has all the amenities and perks you’ve dreamed of. Sure, it will cost a pretty penny, but think of how much happier you’ll be in the air!

2. Wear a Fanny Pack on the Plane

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Did you know a fanny pack doesn’t count against your allotted carry-on baggage when flying on a lot of airlines? It’s true! Pay your respects to the bodybuilders of the 1980s by rocking a fanny pack and using it as a secondary personal item; use it to hold your smartphone, device chargers, and toiletries. This ingenious tip frees up valuable luggage space and allows travelers to pack even more essentials. Plus, you’ll look rad walking around the airport terminal!

3. Roll Everything You Pack

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When packing, never fold; rolling clothes is the most efficient method in 2024! I admit I was hesitant to adopt this packing style, but after a few recent trips, I believe the hype. Not only can you fit more clothes into small spaces like the interior of a backpack or day bag, but you’ll eliminate the possibility of wrinkles in many cases! It’s a win-win situation. (Plus, physically stuffing your rolled clothes into a bag feels fantastic. Trust me.)

4. Buy Airport Lounge Passes

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Buying a one-time airport lounge pass can make any stopover infinitely more memorable if you despise waiting hours in a terminal during a connecting flight (and who doesn’t?). Most airport lounges allow you to buy day passes that give travelers access to private, all-inclusive lounges. I’ve dined (and drank) in these before; they’ve become one of my favorite parts of traveling. Here’s a travel secret: sipping a martini away from the crowds makes your anxiety float away.

5. Keep Hotel Room Quality in Mind

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Many experts and frequent fliers agree that, in most cases, the most expensive room in a cheap hotel is a better value than the cheapest room in the most luxurious hotel. Keep that in mind when booking; it can be tempting to chase prestige when choosing hotels. Fantastic rooms can be found if you research and search for diamonds in the rough. Remember, not every vacation has to take place at the Four Seasons. You’ll be surprised how nice rooms are at lesser-known hotels!

6. Download Offline Maps

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When traveling, you never know when you’ll unexpectedly lose data access on your smart devices. Do yourself a favor and download offline maps before you arrive. Apps like Google Maps have this handy feature built-in. With just a few taps, you’ll secure dependable, navigation-friendly maps that work even if your data plan goes on the fritz. It’s a no-brainer tip to keep you sane, especially in an unfamiliar country.

7. Pack Light

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I know it can feel shortsighted, but one of the most unpleasant experiences is lugging 50-pound checked luggage (the maximum allowed by most airlines) around an unfamiliar city as you hopelessly attempt to track down your hotel, hostel, or Airbnb. Pack light; only bring what you need! Don’t worry; you can track down and purchase essentials like toiletries at local grocery stores or supermarkets once you arrive at your destination. Give your arms and shoulders a break and travel with the bare minimum!

8. Keep an Eye Out For Deals

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Being vigilant when looking for unique travel deals should be a given if you want your next adventure to be as incredible as possible. Always keep your eyes peeled; you never know when you’ll stumble upon a limited-time offer, discount code, or unexpectedly low prices for airfare, hotels, and experiences. It’s easy to overspend on a memorable vacation, but going on the trip of a lifetime without worrying about going bankrupt requires more attention to detail!

9. Always Book Hotels Directly

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I can’t overstate this enough. Always book hotel rooms directly with the hotel. Do not use third-party booking platforms to save a few bucks; it’s not worth it. Trust me; if you decide to change your reservation, jumping through hoops with a third party will end in headaches. Most travel nightmare stories start with, “So I found a discount website I’d never seen before, and I booked my hotel at an unbeatable price!”

10. Pack More Underwear Than You Need

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Don’t blush; accidents and unfortunate scenarios happen when you least expect it. Although I’m not one of them (thank goodness), many travelers have confessed that they usually only pack one pair of underwear each night they travel. Still, you must give yourself more wiggle room than that! I can’t imagine the situation that would have to occur where I’d be frantically searching for clean underwear, but I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. Pack more underwear than any human could possibly need!

11. Combat Against Jet Lag

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Timeshifter is a fantastic app in an emerging genre of smartphone travel tools: Combating jet lag! Timeshifter keeps you on a schedule that helps you effortlessly adapt to the time difference when traveling across time zones, making it the ultimate app to use when flying from the United States to Europe. I’ve been devastated by jet lag before. I’m looking forward to utilizing apps like Timeshifter to offset the awful feeling of lethargy during my next trip. By all accounts, it will be a complete game-changer.

12. Don’t Withdraw Cash

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When traveling internationally, finding the nearest ATM and withdrawing cash in the local currency is a tradition that makes travelers feel part of the culture. Still, it’s one of the worst things they can do. Forego this option whenever you can because the currency conversion fees can be exorbitant! Instead, use a quality credit card that offers no international transaction fees; that’s the best way to save money while also giving yourself the consumer protection you’re used to at home.

13. Use Shower Sandals in Hostels

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International hostels are fantastic overnight lodging options for any budget-conscious traveler. However, many frequent adventurers agree that it’s best to pay homage to your college days by bringing a pair of shower sandals when you use community showers! They’re a practical and inexpensive (albeit the opposite of fashionable) way to keep your feet safe from bacteria that can live in those moist environments known as communal showers.

14. It’s Not Where You Go But Who You’re With

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In the grand scheme of things, your destination isn’t what matters. Countless people believe the recipe for an unforgettable adventure revolves around who you’re with, not where you go. We’re only as good as the company we keep, and we should keep that in mind whether we’re relaxing at home or about to embark on an exciting journey! While solo travel is enticing, many travelers will tell you it doesn’t get any better than traveling with people you love.

15. Research Your Plane Ahead of Time

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Websites like SeatGuru offer in-depth looks at the cabin of any plane that regularly flies, and researching your aircraft before you take off can yield fantastic benefits. You may be unaware that you booked a ticket for an undesirable seat (say, one close to a restroom or one that doesn’t recline at all). SeatGuru can give you essential information on how to change your seat before your trip. There’s nothing worse than realizing you’re doomed to sit in a terrible seat for hours on end, so take advantage of opportunities like this and do your due diligence!

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