33. Ignore cat calls or any compliments, if they appear harmless just smile, nod and keep walking
Trust me the more attention you give to unwanted attention is a bad idea.
32. Don't be afraid to switch dorms or inform the hostel receptionist if there's someone acting inappropriately towards you
If someone is being downright inappropriate don't be afraid to ask to change rooms, your hostel receptionist is there to make sure you feel comfortable.
31. Incognito tabs on browsers will be your new best friend when booking flights
The more times you search for the same airfare, the more the airfare goes up! Sneaky Airlines. Just open an 'incognito tab' on your browser and enjoy the cheaper prices.
30. In case you get lost, don't take out your map or look at your phone on the street. Just run into a cafe or a shop!
Now the majority of the time you'll be alright, but if you think you're in a bad area, just run into any cafe or shop and check your map there. You'll be less likely to catch the eye of someone with bad intentions.
29. Wear a fake wedding ring
This is a total precaution, but it works. Have a bad story ready and don't be afraid to tell the guy you just ain't interested. That should detour them from talking to you any longer.
30. Avoid or take precaution when arriving late into a place with a dodgy reputation
Especially if you're travelling solo, it's always better to research the safest way to get to your hostel before you land in your destination. If it's only a little extra to get a flight/train earlier it might be worth the investment
29. Keep a secret stash of cash in a tampon box
Because what's the likelihood someone is going to check there.
28. Snap a photo of the taxi's licence plate before getting in
Another precaution. This is not to say that every taxi is going to overcharge, kidnap you etc. but it'll deter them from causing you any harm because they know you have their licence plate number.
27. Don't be afraid to venture out of 'female dorms'
Mixed dorms are often cheaper, and not necessarily full of dudes. I usually book mixed dorms and it is what it says on the tin, mixed. You may end up with a group of lads spending a weekend on the lash, but that's the worse case scenario.
26. Dirty shoes? Wrap them in a shower cap.
A good little trick if you've spent the past week at a festival and your shoes are covered in dirt.
25. Keep hair clips in a tic-tac container
Another good trick to keeping all your hair clips in one place and prevent magically losing them all.
24. If you're predominantly travelling by train or bus, just buy the big bottles of shampoo etc.
The thing with travel sized bottles is that you keep having to refill. It's cheap and easier just to buy the big bottles, therefore you don't have to keep buy more, especially if you'll be on the road for a while.
23. Sandwich bags are just about the handiest thing you'll ever have on you
You can use these for everything! For storing wet face cloths, shampoo/body gel bottles, toothbrushes, airport security and even as sandwich bags. Plus they don't take up much space either.
22. Moisturise. Moisturise. MOISTURISE!
Before bed and first thing in the morning! Keep your skin looking well and hydrated, you'll be thanking yourself in the long run.
21. Save your empty plastic bottle at the airport and refill it past security
Yep, you can bring an empty water bottle through airport security. Just refill on the other side. No spending €5 on a tiny bottle of water for you!
20. You can usually find the Wifi code for anywhere in the FourSquare comments
Facebook for errrrrrbody!
19. Take pictures of your travel documents: passport, travel insurance etc. and upload it to Google Drive or DropBox
Because it's good to have a backup for the important stuff.
18. Little luxuries: You can make yourself a refreshing face mask with lemon juice and a sachet of sugar
This is the gosh darn cheapest, most satisfactory face mask in the game! You can literally make it anywhere and it keeps your face feeling fresh!
17. Bring a spare pillowcase
If you can get a silk one. But do bring one! You can do so much with it like; stuff a jumper in it and use on long journeys, as a sack for laundry or if you're a bit paranoid about the pillowcase in your hostel it's good to have your own.
16. A bit timid heading out on your own? Join a pub crawl.
There's no point traveling without embracing the nightlife so join a pub crawl if the thought's of going solo are a bit daunting. If you're around Europe you should check out the Backpacker PubCrawl, their guides always look after the solo travellers and help you interact with other backpackers!
15. Bring one small trusty-eye shadow palette
Unless you really want to be carrying around several million little pots or palettes of eyeshadow it's worth just bringing the one you know suits you and you can play around with. Without advertising, I always use these small little palettes from Rimmel because you can play around with the four colours, it's cheap and lasts for months!
14. A scarf can be a million things
A pillow, a blanket, something to cuddle in your hungover state.
13. Roll your clothes inside of folding them
It means you can bring clothes with you, which is great if you want to skip the cost of paying for checked luggage on flights.
12. Bring a flask
Save some cash and sneak a flask around, but you didn't hear this from me.
11. Trust your gut
Always, always, ALWAYS trust your instincts. Whether that by that kebab may give me food poisoning, he looks dodgy as f*** or you just ain't feeling that destination. Just get your shit and go if you're gut is telling you to.
10. Screenshot Google Maps
Pardon my atrocious paint shop skills, but it's good to screenshot Google maps in case you don't have a map on you.
9. Have a code word with your Mother/Friend back home to let them know you're alive
It's good to let your Mother or close relative know you're still alive. You may be having the time of your life, but they'll be worrying about you if you don't check in regulary.
8. Plan an outfit for each occasion
But not every occasions, comfy clothes to go sightseeing in, two outfits to go out at night in (dress & playsuits are great for this), some rain gear, two pairs of shoes and boom, done.
7. Make other girl friends
Girls will always look out for each other, so don't be timid about engaging with groups of them, you could find yourself with 6 new best friends!
6. Gather as many sample perfumes as humanly possible
THIS IS A GOLDEN TIP! When you're at the airport, snag as many free samples as possible. You'll have an array of delicious smelling perfumes which will mask the smell of sweat from sightseeing all day. Plus, it's a little piece of luxury which goes a long way when backpacking.
5. Coconut Oil is oil of the Gods
You cook with it, use it as a hair mask, throw some sugar in with it and you got yourself a DIY exfoliation cream. It is a God-given gift which can be used in a million different ways!
4. Dry Shampoo is also a necessary
After a 7 hour train journey you'll be thankful this product exists.
3. Unless you reeeeallly need to, don't bring a hairdryer
If you're travelling during the colder months than bring one in order to prevent getting sick. But in the summer months, you won't need one. Either wash your hair before you go to sleep, or in the morning and let it dry in the sun all day. It's better for your hair too ;)
2. Whether drunk or sober ALWAYS bring a litre bottle of water to bed
I have a crumpled bottle of water from my previous 2 month interrail around Europe which I spent more mornings waking up than I'd like to admit. The truth is it's soooo important to stay hydrated when you're traveling. It's the first ingredient to getting sick. So look after your health (and your hangover) and drink plenty of water.
1. Friends are everywhere, all you just have to say is hello
That's right. Human beings are a lot more approachable than that paranoid voice in the back your heads tells you. That's the great thing about hostels, everyone is traveling, we're all in the same boat. You'll be surprised how many people are genuine, kind and funny! So don't be so shy!
That's all I got for the moment girls, happy travels!
By Backpacking-Embracer, Catherine Munnelly.