Most people do not know the difference between normal plain old travelling and backpacking. Backpacking is a form of low cost, independent travel usually for a long term. Where you explore the destination more like a local rather than a tourist. While backing you stay in hostels, lodges, or you couch surf. Also, it is called backpacking because all your clothes and essentials are packed in a backpack which you carry with yourself everywhere as you do not have a hotel room. Backpacking is a great form of traveling for young students who are curious to explore cities and the best part is that it´s budget friendly and adventurous at the same time.
So, here are 7 backpacking tips which will come in handy for your next expedition.
1) Pack Light
It´s the oldest trick in the book and you might have heard it many times. Once you actually travel light you will realise it makes your life easy. While travelling we tend to overpack our bags with the clothes we don´t need. You need to pack light as you will be in a constant rush on your backpacking trip. Rush to catch the bus or the last bed in the hostel. Plus, the fewer things you have the lesser is the chance for them to get stolen. So, try to keep only those things which you need and avoid adding more items in your backpack once you reach your destinations.
2) Camp Out
Whenever possible try to camp out for part of your backpacking trip. There are loads of great camping grounds in a lot of countries which won’t dig a hole in your pocket. However, if you are feeling adventurous enough and you are gutsy then you can set up a camp anywhere, just like Bear Grylls. So, when planning your destination do look out for the camping destinations and the required permissions and then plan accordingly.
3) Buy a train card/pass
Whenever you want to explore the depths of a city, take a train. In all of Asia and Europe, there is a great connectivity of trains within a city. You can buy prepaid passes for the train or the subway, which will save you tons of money and you can explore the city without worrying about the cost after the initial purchase. Trainhopping can really get you a great view of a city.
4) Avoid tourist traps
While backpacking your aim is to travel more and spend less amount of money, so try to roam around the city like a local. Eat lunch where the locals do, spend Saturday nights where the locals do. Avoid the places where the tourists are maximum or even if you do, don´t pay for sightseeing services as they charge hefty amounts of money.
5) Be careful about the pickpockets and scammers
Imagine being on a budget and have it all being taken away by a thief. This is the most heartbreaking thing that can happen to you while backpacking. No matter where you go, such people are everywhere and especially in Asia. They can spot a tourist from a mile away and will resort to extreme measures to scam you. So the next time someone asks you to follow them to the best restaurant for the best meal, don’t do it. It might be a way to scam you or rob you. Also the best way to avoid pickpockets is to keep your money hidden in secret pockets and money packs.
6) Think before spending every penny.
Money saving is an integral part of your backpacking trip. If you are able to save money then you can prolong your trip or do more activities than you actually planned to do. Before spending money ask yourself “Do I really need this?” , “is there something better I can spend my money on?”. Next time do not buy those fridge magnets as a memento, rather pick up a seashell from the shore and paint it yourself.
7) Be friendly with the locals.
Remember while backpacking you are there to explore the culture and the true essence of the city. This is only possible when doing what the locals do. So the next time you are on a subway just try to initiate a conversation with a local. The next time you’re at a bar approach the bartender with questions about the city. This will give you an insight into the city and its people.
Bonus Tip – Pack a camera! memories are one of the most important things. Do not just click the scenic landscapes, as some of the best photos are the ones of street signs, foods, transport, and most importantly: the people you meet. Your photos should tell a continuous story of your wonderful journey.
These were some of the backpacking tips for your next adventure. Make sure to share this with your friends with whom you’d like to backpack. Also stay tuned for our next article where we tell you the best backpacking destinations.