While the rest of the world waits for Spring Break or the summer to book their holidays, you’ve got your sights on the winter. It’s sensible, really. When you skip over these busy travel times, you miss the worst things about travelling. You get to avoid the inflated prices of flights and hotels, while side-stepping the problems of crowds and long line-ups.
Just because you’ve got your timing all sorted out doesn’t mean you have everything else locked down tight. If you’re planning a mid-winter vacation this year, use this guide to make sure you’re doing it right. From tricks and tips to apps and accessories, there’s tried-and-tested travelling advice you won’t want to miss just below.
Essential Hacks For Your Wintertime Vacation Photo Gallery
Download Google Translate
Resorts in the Caribbean are usually the mainstay of winter holidays, but the wreckage left by Hurricane Irma makes this an impossible and insensitive destination. Take this opportunity to move past your safety zone and explore something new instead.
Travelling off-resort and away from typical tourist hubs is an adventure that can reveal hidden gems, but it can be tricky if you don’t speak the local language. This is where Google Translate becomes important. Since its first release in 2007, the search engine giant’s app has improved its real-time translation abilities in text, images, and spoken word. Just tap the little microphone icon, and you and the locals will finally be able to converse.
Stand out with customized luggage and tech
Picture waiting at the baggage carousel, fighting with the other passengers to see if the 89th black suitcase floating past is yours. Dodging an elbow while identifying a moving bag is the last thing you want to do after a long flight. Luckily, you can avoid the frustration by investing in personalized luggage. The next time you buy a suitcase or backpack, opt for an unusual color or design that’s easy to spot far away. You’ll know when your bright orange suitcase with a purple tag hits the carousel right away.
The same idea goes for any tech you bring with you. Many of us travel with our laptops or MacBooks, so we can look up important details of our trip and stay in touch with loved ones back at home. It’s easy to lose track of these items when they aren’t customized in a bright color or textured MacBook skin. When you make your MacBook one of a kind, there’s no way you’ll accidentally leave it behind at the many hotels, restaurants, or bars you visit.
Invest in noise cancelling headphones
You’ll thank yourself when you get stuck between the man hacking up a lung and the crying baby on your flight home. Just put on a decent quality pair of headphones, and you can cancel out the most annoying noises of your trip. Well-made headphones have a microphone that detects unwanted background noises. They then pip in specialized sound waves to negate these noises and eliminate distractions.
Opt for an over-ear pair to get the best coverage. Switching from earbuds to this style of headphone will change your life as you experience your downloaded Comedy Bang Bang podcast or Taylor Swift album in surround sound. Best of all, no one will know that your guilty pleasure is TSwift.
Track your stuff
One of the worst things to happen while on a trip is realizing you’ve misplaced your passport. Next to the plane ticket, it’s the single most important document that you need, wherever your winter holidays take you. Unfortunately, the small booklet is easy to lose.
If you have a habit of misplacing things, equip your passport (and any important item) with an 0koban tracker tag. These tags come with a unique identification code that you need to register online. If you lose your passport, its finder can follow the directions on the tag and use your code to send an email about its location. It can be a life saver if you only just realize you’re missing a key element of your trip a few days before you’re meant to leave.
Ensure your winter vacation goes off without a hitch. Take advantage of these tricks and tips, and see how easy travelling is at any time of the year. And don’t forget to share any unusual advice you have for your fellow travellers. Bon voyage!