Who doesn’t love the feeling of an upcoming vacation? Cocktails by the beach or hiking above the clouds.
Although a dreamy holiday looks good in your head, there may be real obstacles you’ll face along the way. These common setbacks affect countless travelers around the world.
However, your chances of avoiding these issues can be lessened if you’re prepared. In this article, we’ll discuss 6 common travel problems and what you can do to mitigate them.
6 common problems travelers face and their solutions
Let’s dive into the problems and setbacks you’ll most likely face at some point in your travels.
#1. Unknown signs, unreadable menus, etc.
We’ve all been there – you’re a confused tourist who can’t figure out where to go or what to eat. Navigating menus, signs, and paperwork in foreign languages is difficult but often necessary. The answer is actually right in your pocket, on your smartphone.
Modern technology is bridging the gap between languages, making overseas travel even more fun and accessible. Microsoft Translator or Google Translate apps even convert the words of a menu to your language on its camera function. Just point your phone and voila!
#2. The exchange rates
It’s all too easy to spend way more on a meal overseas than you expected. Currency differences and conversion rates are prevailing issues for travelers. Whether by mistake or from your bank’s conversion fees, currency exchange can hurt your holiday budget.
Luckily, there are many ways to reduce these expenses. A multi-currency debit or credit card like Wise or Revolut offers low fees on conversions. Currency exchange apps also display live conversion rates to ensure you’re never surprised or ripped off.
#3. Getting hacked
The last thing you want to think about on vacation is your cybersecurity. Yet, cyber threats are present no matter where you go in the world. Unfortunately, tourist-dense areas tend to attract higher numbers of scammers too.
Most of all, local free Wi-Fi can be hazardous for browsing the web. Hackers can set up fake Wi-Fi to steal personal data from anyone who connects. Test a VPN service to take advantage of military-grade encryption, protecting your data on any connection.
#4. Delayed or canceled transport
The bane of the traveler’s existence has to be long delays and cancellations of transport. Plan all you like, it only takes a late bus to set you back to ground zero. But if this is out of your control, what can you do about it? These are a few solutions:
- Plan enough time around your transit just in case of minor delays;
- Book travel insurance that covers the cost of canceled transport;
- If time is crucial, have a backup plan (or alternate route).
#5. Potable tap water
Each country or destination varies in terms of economy and infrastructure. Often poorer economies are yet to supply their population with clean drinking water. This is a facet of life most Westerners take for granted but should prepare for nonetheless.
Before you fly, check on sites like Tap Safe to find out if the tap water in your destination country is safe to drink. If you’re already overseas, ask locals or tourist information kiosks.
Have you ever had to repack your bags at the airport due to luggage weight requirements? Well, you’re not alone. Overpacking is an extremely common problem while traveling. Here are a few things you can do to travel lighter:
- Pack comfortable clothes you’ll wear every day, not for every special occasion.
- Swap the medical supplies for a small first-aid kit. All other supplies can be bought wherever you’re going.
- Limit the size of your luggage. A smaller capacity forces you to bring less.
- Souvenirs don’t need to be heavy and bulky – bring home some photos, recipes, and magnets for your loved ones.
Traveling allows you to see the world while relieving yourself of the stresses of work and home life. However, as much as you’d love to take off on a relaxing vacation, traveling will occasionally throw a spanner in the works.
Being aware of the common travel problems will help you to prevent them and enjoy your holiday even more.