Before travelling to any city, download Google Maps and then download the city map within the app to ensure that you can use it while offline.
This feature is kind of a secret, but it’s easy to do. All you do is hover over the area of the map that you want to save and then type “OK Maps” into the search field (without the quotations) and voila, a button will appear to allow you to download the map.
You’ll then be able to view, zoom and use the map 100% offline. If you want to use the navigation feature to show you directions / public transport routes etc, you’ll still need internet, but without a connection you’ll be able to view the map and even see your dot to know where you are and what sights and landmarks are around you
It’s not a problem if your traveling solo and you need to take photos of yourself. There are a few ways that you can capture those memorable moments from your trip. Just stay away from those aweful selfie sticks that are plagueing social media. Yes, selfie sticks are easy to use and convenient but seeing multiple shots of an arm or the stick is very boring.
- Buy yourself a mini tripod and use it when ever you need to take a photo of yourself. These tripods are very light and can be fitted to most small cameras. Set the self timer, arrange your frame, work out where you should be standing, press the shutter button and go. Cameras now have an option on the self-timer to set the number of seconds ( up to 30 seconds ) and the number of frames to shoot…… you can change your pose for each shot.
How good is that !!!!
- Do a photo exchange. Look out for other solo travellers and ask them to take a photo of you and in return you will take one of them. The only problem with this, is that they may not frame the shot as you wished and you will be left disappointed.
You may even end up with a new friend or travel buddy
Get your selfies right and everyone will be asking who took your photographs
Photocopy Your Passport
Before you leave home take a photocopy of your Passport and also of any pages that have Valid Visas for the countries you will be travelling to or have entered on a VOA, place them in a plastic bag to prevent water damage and keep them in your backpack somewhere safe.
The next step is to email yourself these as an attachment so that you always have a backup copy.
This way if you ever lose or misplace your Passport you will have the details at hand. Hard copies of your Passport are also useful so that you have ID for the times that you need to leave your Passport at an Embassy while applying for a visa or when hiring a car or motorbike.
Always ask the locals where to eat. In so many places the touristy restaurants are way more expensive and often not as goods as the local eateries.
When you first check into your hotel, hostel or B&B, ask the receptionist where their favourite restaurants are. They may be reluctant to give up all of their secrets, so be friendly and press them a bit!
I’ve found that in touristy towns, even Trip Advisor isn’t the best guide because it’s always filtered tourist reviews on there, written in English.
The locals know where the real hidden gems are and they usually wouldn’t be caught dead in the tourist traps.
Ask around, use their recommendations and find the best restaurants!
Just Do It
I have saved the best tip till last……………….. If you want to travel… Just Do It
People always find excuses – my friend won’t come with me, Ive got too much work, i’m afraid to travel solo………
If you want to, you can do it. If you have enough money to buy a computer to read this post, then you have enough to go on a trip somewhere.
If you have kids. You can do it. If you have a mortgage. You can do it. You just have to priortize.
If you love travel and you’re passionate about it. Make it happen.