Managed to get around 55 countries: 12 life hacks from an experienced traveler

A lover of travel, which managed to around 55 countries, said their stories, tips and finds, which you can feel the road more safe and comfortable. The story is written in first person.

Успела объехать 55 стран: 12 лайфхаков от опытной путешественницы

Photo: Depositphotos

Hi! My name is Alice, and more than anything I love to travel. I drove alone 55 countries in Africa, Asia and South America. During the journey, stuff happens, and often the little things that you don’t even think “on the beach”, can save a lot of nerve cells, as well as money and health.

About wallet

To reduce the risk of a robbery with dire consequences, I advise you to have a false wallet. In an ordinary wallet, put a small amount, and a couple of cards — no money or blocked.

If I had known about this method at the beginning of my travels, I wouldn’t have, in addition to the stress of the robbery to tell the police to take the families money on new tickets and to recover the documents. I don’t even remember exactly where it was: I did not know Moscow. There were three of them: two boys and a girl with a knife — the classical “GOP-stop”. “Don’t yell and give me the purse, if you want to live,” said the guy holding drunk friend. What to do in this situation?

Well, first, it is better to prevent such and not to walk alone at night. If this happens — calmly give a handbag with a wallet about the inside. The same is true about the phone — a cheap model just in case.

The safety strip

And where to put the money and cards? It is best to separate them. Part hide “myself”. When I student traveled by train from Almaty to Odessa and back, my grandmother made me pockets for underwear, that’s where I put cash. Now this is easier: you can buy a convenient Fanny pack to your taste.

Carry a purse with small change and old cards. Better yet, hide your money in a stack with spacers in the bag for dirty clothes or other unattractive places. If you leave things in the room where there is no safe, this trick will help to save nerves and money. Additionally, you can go turn on the TV or hang on the door handle from the back side a sign “Do Not Disturb” to uninvited guests thought you were at home.

The correct insurance

Before the trip, nobody wants to spend extra money, so they often have a travel insurance that people buy only when it is needed for the visa. But believe me, this economy is unjustified, and I had to sure on personal experience.

Once I was in Saigon, where traffic lights and traffic signs on multilane roads is needed, it seems, just for the scenery. Absolutely uncontrolled highway is overrun by bikers, mamimi shoulder to shoulder. My daughter standing near such a road, not daring to move her, when suddenly I feel a sharp jolt in his shoulder. I don’t even know what happened. “Bag! — screaming daughter. — He took your bag!”

In the bag was the phone, about € 150 and credit cards. At the police station made a report, but on arrival the insurance gave me back everything, including cash, the cost of bags and the phone. I have calculated that if I did not have insurance, the journey would have cost me more than 2 times more expensive.

Medical records on the mobileIn the road, stuff happens — the cold and the poisoning to injuries of different severity. How quickly and without an interpreter to explain what shots you can make, what — no, are there allergies? And in more serious cases, if the person is unconscious, some blood transfusions, how to contact the family?

In such cases, on the iPhone there is a magic button, about which little who knows: medical ID. Can be viewed without entering the passcode of the phone. Fill in the map is simple: Health — medical Records — Create records. Fill out all sections and include the switch “show On lock screen”. It is better to enter data in Latin — so they’ll read any doctor.

On other operating systems built-in analogue no, but you can download and install as an external application. However, in this case it will only work on unlocked phone.

First aid

Antiseptic, bandages and band-AIDS, pain reliever, antihistamine, antipyretic, medicine for diarrhea — something that should be in the Cabinet forever.

Once in Indonesia, I decided to learn to ride a bike, but it all went a bit unfortunate. I unfortunately didn’t take any antiseptic. Had to walk 5 km to the village pharmacy and to cast the whole idea, because in English there, no one spoke. I demonstrated the picture-inflicted wounds, “cried” from pain — and I was given a bottle of alcohol.

Important: if you have a special illness and need drugs, prescription, take them with you only with the recipe, or in some airports you can ask additional questions, and then demand to throw away medicines.

Keychain whistle

Gave my mom, daughter and all her friends. A normal keychain but with a ring. Pull the ring and throw away. Yells so that any monkey will start to think about their safety, not to mention the robbers. To turn off, will have to find a dropped part and to connect with what you have left in your hands, and it will not happen at once. A great thing when you need to attract attention and to gain time.

“Wild cat”

Успела объехать 55 стран: 12 лайфхаков от опытной путешественницы

Photo: Instagram screenshot

Small key ring consisting of two rings in the form of feline faces with pointed ears, which in case of danger turns into stabbing weapons is not worse than the cap have “the blinders”. Not my hack, and I didn’t use them — I do not know how to fight. But if it comes down to it, I think your instincts will tell. Just watch the video and conclude, you need this thing or not.

If you prefer a gas canister, but can’t or don’t want to take it with you, you can instead use anti-mosquito spray or hairspray.

Important: the spray should only be used in extreme cases, the outdoors and if there is a real opportunity to escape quickly; to aim for the eyes.

RFID protection

Passport cover, which can be folded major credit cards, and it is to hide in a Fanny pack, whether internal or external, depending on the country and its level of risk, will prevent remote reading of data card and document scanning devices.

By the way, the same function performed by conventional aluminum foil. RFID protection is good bag or backpack-anti-theft. Basic requirements — neprorezaemye and waterproof polyester material, reflective inserts, aluminum frame, hidden zipper, ideally the cord with a carabiner that can be attached bag.

Do not let the taxi driver

Especially if you come to a night in a private hotel or guest house. Even if you booked through a reliable and pointed to the approximate time of arrival. I was in Italy: we arrived at night, and the Guesthouse is closed, no one around, no answer.

Options can be any: from accidents to ordinary carelessness. Just ask the taxi driver to wait until you go to the hotel. And if that happens, he will be able to help you with finding alternatives. By the way, if I had to drive on the left in a taxi, before landing, note the number of the car and ask the driver when you get there. When you sit, call to where you’re going or pretend you called. In the conversation say something like: “you Can meet me through…, will drive the car with the number…”

Important: going on the road, write down the address of the place where you left off, in the local language. This is especially true for countries with tonal languages, where you can hardly pronounce the name correctly.

A special application will help to feel more secure

  • RedZone — creates safe routes based on information from official sources, police data, and application users. A great thing to use even in places that are considered more or less quiet. The three most dangerous situation in my entire “career travelers” did not happen in South Africa, Zimbabwe or Peru, while in Moscow, Paris and San Francisco.
  • Sitata — to monitor problem areas on your route (outbreaks of disease, military actions and riots, bad weather conditions). In addition, the app provides quick access to emergency numbers and hospitals, and also allows you to communicate with the doctors and even to undergo a medical examination without leaving the room.
  • MayDay — you can send and receive SOS signals from friends and other users.
  • Tripwhistle — immediate access to emergency numbers in 196 countries of the world.
  • WiFiMap — finds the next open and closed networks in any city; most of the passwords on a closed network too. The developers claim that the application of 100 million Wi-Fi hotspots around the world.

Don’t blindly trust the media, look for primary sources

At the end of 2017, the media scared the eruption of the volcano on Bali, and many canceled the trip. I read information on local sites and forums, talked in groups of people living there and realized that even in the case of an eruption, the danger zone is just 15 km around Agung. And in the end a wonderful ride around the Island of the Gods and the adjacent Islands, and the trip cost me almost 2 times cheaper than it should have been.

The media want sensationalism, so they often exaggerate the extent of problems and disasters. Besides, everything seems much worse than is really is. All Moscow becomes more dangerous if somewhere in the center was a rally, no matter how loudly about this for a saying on all channels.

Vaccinations are necessary, but not always

When I thought how dangerous it is in terms of health to go to Namibia, a friend told me that he went there with the baby. At first she believed that any African country needs to do a dozen vaccinations. But in the vaccination office told her that according to epidemiological safety Namibia is approximately as Europe (except for malaria in difficult to access areas) and even the last case of yellow fever was registered in nineteen forty-some year.

And sometimes Vice versa: for example, in the country, the epidemic breaks out. Therefore, before to do or not to do vaccinations, going anywhere, do not be guided by the reviews on the Internet. Better consult with competent doctors in the vaccination centers or check the details in official website who.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

If an alien caught in a difficult situation in your country, ask for help — you can’t turn him down? 90% of people on Earth will do the same.

Once I booked the hotel in the most ancient city in Sri Lanka. Arrived at the specified coordinates in the dark, and instead of a hotel grocery store. The number indicated meet either Tamil, or Sinhala. Fortunately, one of the customers spoke English and I asked him to help. It turned out that the hotel is 40 km from the coordinates indicated on the website. Nothing anywhere in Moscow, but not in the night in Sri Lanka after a full day of driving. What to do?

My “negotiator” at once embraced the situation: I started calling everyone she knew and found us a cheap Guesthouse. And then took us to the roof of some house where we saw the unscheduled parade of 150 decorated and covered with colored lights and elephants and fire dancers, with one of the most unforgettable experiences from this trip. By the way, asking for help, not allowing to start the conversation is a good psychological technique, if it seems that you want to cause harm (for example, trying to Rob or be fined).