How many times have you forgotten something, stressed out while in route, or worse - missed your flight because you weren’t paying attention? No one is perfect and mishaps are bound to happen while traveling, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do your best to prepare accordingly! Whether you are a frequent flyer or a once-in-a-blue-moon traveler, there is a certain travel etiquette that should always be followed. I’m sharing 7 rules that every traveler should abide by, each and every time they travel. Try incorporating these travel rules on your next trip and see if you notice a smoother, less-hectic travel experience.
#1 Always Have Travel Documents Handy
The airports can already be headache, so why make the experience worse?! It’s important to have all your identifications and travel items prepared to be checked in or ready to board at all times. By not being prepared, not only does it waste your time but other passengers who are in hurry to get to their destination. Nothing is worse than feeling the pressure of people watching you search in a panic to find your passport!
As you wait in line, use the queue time to gather your belongings before it’s your turn to go through the metal detector or board. Individuals who start to fumble for their belongings at the counter can come across insensitive especially when they’ve had time to get their stuff together. Save yourself from the hassle of losing important documents and take the time to slowly get the items you need for your travel. You can also designate a specific place to keep your documents every time you travel – like the front zipper of your carry-on. That way you will never forget!
#2 Pack Accordingly for Your Trip
If you know you’re going to be travelling to a place where the climate is drastically different to what you are used, pack appropriately. That means you should take a look at what the weather will be like before you travel. You should also only pack what you need. No need to pack duplicate items and risk the chance of having to pay more because of expensive luggage.
In many cases flyers pack light because they know they eventually buy souvenirs or items when they reach their destination. Over packing can be a vacation fail, and what’s worse than having to leave items that you’ve spent your hard earn money on behind. There are all types of packers. There are the professional packers that can pack for 7 days in just under an hour, and there are the packers that pack nothing needed for their trip but packed it any way. Nonetheless being aware of your destination and the activities you’ll be enjoying is good to know when you being packing. You should check out How to Pack Like a Pro for a few pointers.
#3 Take in the Full Experience
Traveling the world can be an amazing experience and culturally educating! Everyone should travel somewhere they haven’t been at least once in their life. Whether it’s to a city, state, or country, traveling is truly enlightening! Being a world traveler doesn’t mean you should be limited to where you should travel, the first step is getting your passport and the rest should be a piece of cake. Traveling widely and often will open a whole new world of ancient cultures, and amazing food. It’s a great way to learn history and to share your stories with friends and family. Make it a point to learn something new each place you visit.
#4 Be a Friendly Traveler
Being friendly is a must while traveling. When traveling internationally, many Americans already have a bad rap for being rude, so why not be the one to change their opinion? Maintaining a friendly attitude, even if the locals aren’t, will pay off in the long run. Smiling is contagious so when asking for directions or speaking to someone in general, be sure to stay friendly.
Having a friendly approach is one rule to keep in mind whether traveling locally or out of the country. Whenever there is a language barrier it’s important to stay friendly because locals will be more willing to work with you through the language scuffle. Give compliments, engage in conversation, and think of some ways you can make someone’s day while traveling.
#5 Treat others as you’d want to be treated
Ah, the golden rule of thumb. Traveling is exciting and should always have fun memories associated with the adventure! Treating others as you’d want to be treated is essential while traveling and can make for the most pleasurable experiences. You wouldn’t want people being rude to you while you’re having a great time, so the same should go for you. Remember to treat people with respect and be kind to them because good karma goes a long way, and who knows, you might just get repaid sooner than you think.
#6 Don’t Forget Your Tipping Etiquette
Depending on where you travel, tipping can be different in other countries. In the States, we usually like to tip 15-20% depending on the quality of service we received while dining. In other countries tipping can vary depending on where you travel and what you’re doing. If you are unsure check with the locals with the area you plan on visiting.
However, being kind to those who are providing service is always a must. Simply tipping the doorman for bringing your bags up or even leaving a couple dollars in an envelope for the cleaning crew who is making sure your hotel room is to your liking can do wonders. A little goes a long way and tipping appropriately is important to keep in mind while traveling. Read Gratuity Etiquette for some general tipping guidelines.
#7 Don’t Bring Negative Attention to Yourself
Growing up, it has probably been instilled in you that you should know when and where to do certain things. For instance, while traveling, it isn’t nice to recline your seat all the way back when there is another passenger behind you. Or, what about yelling in your neighbor’s ear to your friend seated across from you? Attracting the wrong attention can lead to repercussions you wouldn’t want while traveling. It’s important to maintain a sensible attitude while traveling to foreign areas you haven’t been before. Unfortunately, you never know how people can react to your actions, so being a happy, easy-going traveler is your best bet.
Let us know how these 7 rules help you make your trip unforgettable in the best way. Are there any travels rules you’ve found helpful that you’d like to share? If so what are they and how do they work for you? We love hearing from you, so stay connected with us by posting comments on the blog, or reaching out on social media.
The CGS Team