Beginners Traveling Advice

I have my passport coming and I just need to bite the bullet and travel like Ive always wanted.
Give me all the possible advice you can think of for a first time, solo traveler that will keep them safe and out of trouble. Im planning to hike and scuba dive in Mexico specifically but general advice is fine too.

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  1. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Go enjoy yourself, it's your dime and your time, stop paying attention to low value male losers on the internet (this doubles as general life advice)

  2. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    I personally only hike with at least moderately high boots
    Although I've not encountered any I fear ticks and snakes greatly

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      >Although I've not encountered any I fear ticks and snakes greatly
      Consider yourself lucky. I see them often in the American south. I have to do a rock check every time I leave the woods.

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        What is a rock check?

        • 10 months ago
          Anonymous

          checking to make sure no on planted crack on you while you weren't looking

  3. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Ok I'll just watch youtube videos then.

  4. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    >advice from SighSee
    a load of poor larping morons who barely left their room let alone country
    >advice from youtube
    95% of travel channels, vloggers, bloggers are air head instagrammers. instant close any vids by a female if you are looking for actual advice beyond 'choose clothes where the colors match'

    well you can find the same basic general advice copy and pasted everywhere so go and find that then do a small cheap trip somewhere close to figure out what will work for you

  5. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Ideally start small and locally so you know how well you do with travel
    Know your creature comforts; know what you can and cant do without for hours or days on end
    Understand that things wont always go right 100% of the time and learn to roll with it
    The person behind the desk also doesnt want to be there. The temporary inconvenience you have to deal with; they will have all day, all week, all month, all year with people far less capable and intelligent than you.
    Print out your shit. You wont always have internet access, you phone will die and if the hotel claims they lost your reservation; you will have it in black and white
    Have a rough idea of what you want to do so you dont dawdle, but have enough room to be spontaneous when things change due to unforeseen circumstances.
    Put your toiletries in a ziplock bag.
    Dont drink the local water
    Yes - do tell the staff where you're going especially when solo traveling.
    Power bank
    Thinking about going 1 hour before needing to be there? Add another hour.
    Take out all the shit you want to put in your luggage, then again but this time with some actual thought if you need it or not
    Remember that coming back home is also part of the journey and nobody wants to come back to a filthy home and an empty fridge.

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      -Take the time to understand the exchange rate, don’t be lazy. Know what you should pay: don’t pay x5-10 as soon as you land to a tout.
      -Use apps like Grab etc for transport, unless you are hiring a scooter.
      -Use a GPS on your phone
      -Get a SIM card with internet ASAP
      -understand how to pay for things. Will most places that visa, or do you need cash? Local cash or USD? Etc.
      -Carry a pen, still lots of forms to fill out even in current year
      - get a power converter ASAP

      Watch youtube videos on how to get from point A to point B. It'll help a lot

      thank you thats all really helpful advice.

  6. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    -Take the time to understand the exchange rate, don’t be lazy. Know what you should pay: don’t pay x5-10 as soon as you land to a tout.
    -Use apps like Grab etc for transport, unless you are hiring a scooter.
    -Use a GPS on your phone
    -Get a SIM card with internet ASAP
    -understand how to pay for things. Will most places that visa, or do you need cash? Local cash or USD? Etc.
    -Carry a pen, still lots of forms to fill out even in current year
    - get a power converter ASAP

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      Whats the deal with the power converter? Is it because they have different frequency of AC? Im guessing Ill have to the SIM card and converter local? I can probably buy a cheap cell phone there too.

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        Hi anon, the power converter might not be necessary depending on what you are plugging in. If all you are doing is electronics you can look at the fine print on your chargers and if all of them take 220-230 as max input you will be fine anywhere in the world. HOWEVER, you will need converters for all the plugs where you are going cause the plugs/sockets are different depending where you go.

        Have a great trip anon. Most of all try to keep discovering new things, don't just fall into a pattern of doing the same things after your first trip, keep discovering and over a few years you'll figure out your own travel style and make the most of your trips.

        • 10 months ago
          Anonymous

          Thanks for clarifying - by power converter I mean socket/plug converter, just so you can plug in and charge your devices.

  7. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Watch youtube videos on how to get from point A to point B. It'll help a lot

  8. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    MORE

  9. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Travel light. Having only 4 - 5 change of socks, jocks & t-shirts and having to wash clothes regularly is far superior to having a massive suitcase to lug around with 2 weeks worth of clothes.

    Get private rooms in hostels as opposed to dorms. Outside of Europe & America it really isn't that much more expensive and you'll spare yourself many bad nights of sleep as well as the risk of your shit being stolen by a roommate.

    Eat a vegetarian diet when travelling in countries where food safety standards are non existent. If you can't wash your fruit/veg before eating. Peel them or buy fruits that have to be peeled anyway.

    Carry/use cash in case something happens your phone/cards.

    Wear your backpack on your chest when in airports to reduce the risk of someone planting contraband on you.

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      >risk of someone planting contraband on you.
      does this happen enough that you have to warn me about it?

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        It's the latest SighSee forced meme

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        It's the latest SighSee forced meme

        It's one moron who spams this drug-planting bullshit on every single SighSee post.

  10. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Get sweat proof clothing for hot and humid places and foot powder in general. Everyone reacts different to sweating buy those things are so much better than having wet cloths after 30 min. and starting to smell.

  11. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    NEVER trust a local who approaches you first.

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      A little overblown there. People are more outgoing in some regions of Mexico, more reserved in others. If someone touts their fresh-squeezed orange juice or home-baked cheese pies to me, hell yeah I'll buy one. What I would say is...NEVER trust a local who approaches you speaking English and offering nothing in particular.
      >"hello friend, where are you from?"
      Once you engage with these street characters, you will have to be really rude and abrupt to break away from their mile-a-minute hustle.

      Whats the deal with the power converter? Is it because they have different frequency of AC? Im guessing Ill have to the SIM card and converter local? I can probably buy a cheap cell phone there too.

      Anon was giving general travel advice, not related to travelling in Mexico specifically. Mexico uses 120 VAC 60 Hz power, just like the rest of North America.
      In Mexico, always plan to pay with cash, in pesos. Try to keep as many smaller bills in your wallet as possible. Many locals spend their earnings every day, so it's a huge hassle to make change for a 500 peso note. Try to pay with one banknote and assorted coins as necessary, receiving one banknote in change. I regularly go to a bank and break about 2000 pesos into 100 or 200 peso bills, because the ATMs mostly give 500 peso bills. You can withdraw pesos from an ATM, or exchange dollars at a booth. The better option for you depends on how your bank handles foreign ATM withdrawals.

  12. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    Will you be going to the Permit Free Zone - Baja California and western Sonora - or mainland Mexico? Will you be driving your own car, taking a bus, or flying into Mexico? Will you be bringing cash dollars to exchange, or primarily using your bank card to withdraw pesos from an ATM? Will you be staying in tourist resorts or in working-class hotels? Expensive or low-cost destinations? Do you want to do drugs while in Mexico - cocaine or marijuana? Do you prefer the highlands or the lowlands?

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      >Will you be going to the Permit Free Zone - Baja California and western Sonora - or mainland Mexico?
      I figure Mexico city is good for a newbie.
      >Will you be driving your own car, taking a bus, or flying into Mexico?
      Flying
      > Will you be bringing cash dollars to exchange, or primarily using your bank card to withdraw pesos from an ATM?
      I dont really want to bring any of my credit cards so I was hoping to use cash and then maybe have a pre-paid or order a travel style card without the tap-to-pay feature.
      >Will you be staying in tourist resorts or in working-class hotels?
      Resorts might be ok and make me feel more comfortable but Im not against a cheap motel.
      >Expensive or low-cost destinations?
      Low cost. Hiking, tour bus, museums.
      >Do you want to do drugs while in Mexico - cocaine or marijuana?
      Hell no but I might check out some girls.
      >Do you prefer the highlands or the lowlands?
      No preference as of yet.

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        You do lose some money exchanging cash at a centro cambiario, often about 10% of the mid-market rate. But credit card "advances" from foreign ATMs can screw you big time as well, depending on your card issuer. Still, I'd recommend bringing at least one card that can withdraw pesos from an ATM. Keep most of your cash rubber-banded in your front pocket, or use a money belt. Have about 2000 pesos in your wallet, preferably one 500 and the rest in 200, 100, 50 or 20 peso bills. Do NOT leave cash unattended in any location. Do NOT tuck cash in your sock; it can fall out and make somebody's day.
        Motels are usually on the outskirts of Mexican cities, and they are primarily intended for drive-in sexual encounters. Hotels are nearly always a better option. Quality varies tremendously. Guests are usually prohibited, though sometimes you can pay an extra fee to bring a guest up to your room. Always pay one day at a time.
        Hiking in Mexico is difficult without your own car, though some cities have excellent natural areas within walking distance. Count on walking the streets for your exercise.

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        Long time Mexico traveler. I always bring my normal credit cards. You can cancel credit cards if they are stolen. It's nice to be able to book new airfare if you need to, it's happened to me. That said, places to spend money with a card aren't as common. A lot of places are still cash only unless its a major shop, hotel (and then not even small shitty ones). And only some gas stations but more and more it seems.

        You do lose some money exchanging cash at a centro cambiario, often about 10% of the mid-market rate. But credit card "advances" from foreign ATMs can screw you big time as well, depending on your card issuer. Still, I'd recommend bringing at least one card that can withdraw pesos from an ATM. Keep most of your cash rubber-banded in your front pocket, or use a money belt. Have about 2000 pesos in your wallet, preferably one 500 and the rest in 200, 100, 50 or 20 peso bills. Do NOT leave cash unattended in any location. Do NOT tuck cash in your sock; it can fall out and make somebody's day.
        Motels are usually on the outskirts of Mexican cities, and they are primarily intended for drive-in sexual encounters. Hotels are nearly always a better option. Quality varies tremendously. Guests are usually prohibited, though sometimes you can pay an extra fee to bring a guest up to your room. Always pay one day at a time.
        Hiking in Mexico is difficult without your own car, though some cities have excellent natural areas within walking distance. Count on walking the streets for your exercise.

        I obtain pesos by ATM. It's the easiest way and rates are typically excellent. The only downside is what fees you might incur so look into accounts that have ATM reimbursement or very low fees. If you change currency bring a crisp new $100 bill and look at the rates, some places are real israelites or give a better rate for large amounts. It may seem trivial but the difference between 16.50 and 17 pesos is 50 pesos which could get you lunch. I try to use ATMs at banks for the best rates and lowest fees and also banks have security usually. Try to watch about being followed from an ATM. If you get large notes (anything bigger than 100 or maybe 200 pesos) go exchange it for smaller ones as a lot of small businesses have very little change. One of the actually plausible, serious crime risks is secuestro express where you're forced to withdraw the maximum from an ATM then they let you go. See what the daily maximum is and if you can change it ($300 should be enough to cover anything you might need in the span of a week).

  13. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    just came back from yucatan and quitana roo, ask me anything
    spoiler: I'm italian

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      What was something that took you buy surprise? In other words, what did you find out you were not prepared for?
      What helped you the most in getting around, buying things, talking with people?
      What would you do differently next time?

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        Another question: What did you take out with you when you walked and what did you leave in your hotel? Did you feel safe leaving things in your hotel?

        Ok so, I made this trip: Cancun, Ilsa Mujeres, Valladolid, Merida, Bacalar, Tulum, Holbox.
        Meanwhile we visited Chicen Iza, Uxmal, a few Cenotes, went snorkeling, visited Rio Lagardos.
        We always tried to eat with the locals for lunch, and then something a little bit more "fancy" for the evening. Valladolid, Tulum, Bacalar and Holbox were quite expensive, but overall they were cheap compared to prices in Italy.

        This is to answer one of your questions: we felt pretty safe around the city, even if sometimes it was a little bit werid given the amount of police, especially in Canun, which I really didn't like particularly...to much of an obvious tourist bait.

        But then again, since we rented a car, we moved alittle bit more inward, leaving Quintana Roo and entering Yucatan. We met a couple of locals in Valladolid, they showed us around a little bit. It may seem a little bit chaotic, the way the cities are built, but we never really felt..threatened. Well, the thing is you have to give a lot of tips around, when you eat, drink, etc. Tourist are sacred there, esplecially in the Yucatan peninsula, where they told us it's very safe for tourists becasue the cartel don't want troubles. Plane and straight.

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      Another question: What did you take out with you when you walked and what did you leave in your hotel? Did you feel safe leaving things in your hotel?

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        We slept in "4 stars hotels" that were particularly cheap, or stayed at a house rented for a couple nights. I always left a good amount of money and my passport, and no one stole anything from me.
        i didn't wear israeliteeles, or fancy clothes, or anything, but I think you can go around pretty safe. also, nightlife ends around 1 am, so there's no really a reason to stay in the streets at night.
        Spanih being similar to italian helped me a lot interacting with people, since we could pretty understand eachother, and spanish is kinda simple, at least the basics, to me.
        Maybe next time I'd like to visit the northern part, with a little bit more time perhaps. 2 weeks put us on a tight schedule.

  14. 10 months ago
    Anonymous

    For some basic advice
    Tickets, try to always buy in the airline page or if you really need to buy with a third party, read their reviews, i almost got screwed by Kiwi (They sold me a ticket for a ghost route that got cancelled and then wanted $500 to change it plus 70% of the airline settlement, thankfully the morons simply bought the ticket with the airline using a prepaid card so i was able to reschedule my flight for free by calling the airline, they were pissed and i'm now banned from their website lol)
    Insurance is always a good thing even if the country you're visiting doesn't require it, if possible get something that covers flight delays and delayed/lost baggages, it has happened to me and saved my ass in a foreign country
    Don't be that guy that didn't know the entry requirements to a country and is now having a meltdown in customs because they got denied and is now delaying the rest of us, read what you have to take with you to enter a country
    Check what you can and can't take to a certain country, saw a guy being dragged by police because his medical weed was in fact illegal in that specific country
    If the price is right, buy your ticket, it might be cheaper in the future but most likely it will be more expensive
    Don't be scared of layovers, sleeping in airports is cool too

    • 10 months ago
      Anonymous

      great advice. this is the kind of stuff i need to know.

      • 10 months ago
        Anonymous

        Np, if you have any specific questions i can help, just ask

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