Oh, hi! Remember me? It’s a new year (a little belated, I know), which means new posts and new adventures! What are your travel plans for 2015?
Now that I’m starting to settle down in Vancouver, I’ve come to realize that my travel destination options are going to change. Not a single day goes by that I don’t think about our European adventures – I miss the cheap flights and the epic getaway spots we were surrounded by. Not to mention we could pack a small bag and dive head first into a completely new country for a weekend. WEEKEND. Oh, hey Germany! What’s up Finland? Yeah, a bit tricky from Vancouver. Since moving back, I’ve started to look into some cool spots that aren’t a 9+ hour flight away and this part of the world certainly brings a different type of travel experience to the table – looks like we’ll be swapping European countries for BC roadies and the western states! Portland or San Fran anyone??
I tend to be a cheapskate traveler, and always will be. I remember budgeting for my first ever backpacking trip to Southeast Asia in 2005 and I made sure to stretch out my money as far as possible. Since then, I’ve hit up all (inhabited) continents except Africa, and have done so with the same approach. Over the years, I’ve developed a small routine, learned to pack light, and made sure to leave home with minimal expectations. Here are a few tips, tidbits and awesome travel tag alongs!
Herschel Little America Backpack: Who hasn’t heard of Herschel? I figured I’d give them the credit they deserve, after all they are Vancouver based. I’ve had this backpack for three years now and it’s been all over BC, and through nine countries. Durable as hell, has yet to let me down and looks good as new. Solid.
RelayRides: Like Airbnb for car sharing! A P2P car rental network that allows the owner to make a bit of money while away from home, and for the renter to have access to a car while on holiday. This is only offered throughout the US, but since we’re going to be venturing south of the border, it’s something that we’ll consider trying! They’ve started to expand available airport rental cars across the US for both renters and car owners using the same peer-to-peer rental process, as well as opening full service airport options that also include short and long-term paid parking for owners. It’s a great option to have, especially if we want to explore those harder to reach spots outside of the city.
Allsubway App: An offline app that gives you a subway map for every major city in the world. Makes inner city hopping much easier!
CityMaps2Go App: Think of it as an offline GoogleMaps that lets you download five free maps of any city (in their archive). They’ve pinned cafes, restaurants, shops, and sights worth checking out – they’ve even linked some key spots with Wikipedia! It also lets you star and note any cool places that you’d like to refer to later on, super handy!
Hammam34 Towel: The travel towel dreams are made of! Easy to pack, quick dry and can be used at least six different ways.
A Pen and Notebook: Long ago were the days when we didn’t have our iPhones to document our travels…now, we expect that most places offer wi-fi so we can upload that sweet money shot to Instagram. We’re all guilty! I try to have a pen and notebook handy to document any feelings, emotions and reflect on my travels. We all know a picture is worth a thousand words (and hopefully a ton of likes), but being able to read back on how you were feeling at one particular moment in a far away place is something else. Believe me when I say my SE Asia journal is freaking hilarious.
Lastly, I’ve kept a promise with myself for 10 years now and that’s to travel to a new country at least once a year. I love it when my body goes into sensory overdrive – seeing new things, eating new foods, hearing a different language and taking in everything with an open mind. Sooooo…where you heading this year?
Hop on over and follow me on my Facebook Page to stay up to date on blog posts and for other daily inspirations!