We only have a very short time on this planet and, for most of us, we have even less time to explore it. Making the most out of your travels is important. We pour a lot of time, money, and energy into planning and executing our travels, so we want to milk every drop of value out of them. This doesn’t mean you have to spend every second of every day seeking adventure while you travel – that would get exhausting. But, there are some techniques you can use that will guarantee you make the most out of your time on the road, without leaving you in need of another vacation to recover by the end of it.
Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
You very rarely regret the things you do, but you often regret the things you didn’t do but wish you had done. Step out of your comfort zone while you travel and say yes to things that would usually scare you. Often, what you experience when you step into the unknown ends up being a highlight of your trip. Take the blinkers off and open your mind to the array of opportunities with which you will be presented when you travel.
Talk to Local People
If you are reading this article then you probably speak reasonable English. Luckily, so do a lot of other people in the world. This means that wherever you go, you are pretty much guaranteed to find at least one native person with whom you can communicate in English. If you know a few words in the local language, even better. Talk to local people and ask them for recommendations and to tell you about their culture. You will learn a lot more than you will on Google and the conversation might lead to a hidden gem.
Take Photos, But Not Too Many
There is no better way to document a trip than by taking photos. No matter how old you get and how distant the memory of the trip becomes, a photo will always transport you right back to that exact time and place. However, be wary of over-doing it. A couple of photos here and there is great, dozens of photos of every single thing you see will take the magic out of the experience and bore you when you look back through your photos in a year’s time.
Make an Itinerary
Being spontaneous while you travel is a lot of fun, but wandering around aimlessly because you don’t have a plan is not. Make a vague itinerary before you travel to give you a guideline of what to see and do while you’re there. You don’t have to stick to it religiously and if you see something better when you arrive then feel free to ditch the original plan. The important thing is that you have an original plan to fall back on, just in case.
Make Friends Along the Way
Don’t be afraid to share your stories with people you meet during your travels. Swap recommendations and exchange tales with one another then watch as your chit chat blossoms into a beautiful friendship. You never know, one of those travellers with whom you crossed paths for an evening may end up being a friend for life.