Feeling overwhelmed with your upcoming trip? These travel tips by Appi Alla will help streamline your holiday.
No one is born a master traveller. Rather, travelling savvy takes months or even years of dropping yourself into new, unknown situations and having to figure out how to navigate and overcome all the various pitfalls you might encounter. It’s a process born of travel mistakes – missed buses, late flights, late bookings and lost passports. After enough of these mistakes you begin to learn and effortlessly (and without any glaring problems) to insert yourself into other cultures. Appi Alla, a travelling enthusiast who has seen it all, has made all of these mistakes and compiled a short list of what she’s learned to help other travellers master the art of seeing the world.
Booking in advance
“Flights are known for being notoriously expensive.” Appi Alla says. “But you can save a lot of money simply by booking in advance.” Airlines take advantage of travellers who are looking to travel somewhere at the last minute by making their flight tickets extremely expensive. But with enough foresight, planning and flexibility, you can book your flights far enough in advance and enjoy cheaper fares from most airlines.
According to Appi Alla, packing light when travelling is advisable for a number of different reasons. Firstly, carrying a large suitcase is just going to slow you down. Secondly, you really don’t need as much luggage as you think you do. And lastly, it’s going to save you money. Most airlines allow you take 7 – 10kg of hand luggage free with every ticket. By not checking in extra bags, you won’t have to pay hefty luggage fees to airlines.
Never carry lots of cash with you
When you land in a country it’s very tempting to withdraw huge amounts of cash from the ATM in order to avoid having to pay transferral fees after every withdrawal. According to Appi Alla this might seem like a good course of action in order to save money, but having large amounts of cash on you makes you a target towards thieves and pickpockets. Carrying small amounts might cost you more in regards to smaller fees immediately, but will give you peace of mind should anything ever get stolen. If you absolutely have to withdraw large amounts of cash, leave most of it in your hotel room and take only what you need when going out.
Have a bad case of the winter blues? Escape to these dream destination beaches with Appi Alla.
How often do stare out of your office window, dreaming of a holiday on an isolated beach in some exotic country half way across the globe? If you’re a normal human being like everyone else, we’re going to guess that the answer is fairly often. Luckily, with summer on the horizon, the time to start planning those beach holidays is now! Which is exactly why, with the help of travel expert Appi Alla, we’ve put together a list of some of the beach getaways to look forward to. Read more below.
Nusa Penida, Bali
According to Appi Alla, there are enough beautiful beaches on the island of Bali to keep you occupied for months without ever seeing all of them. But perhaps the most beautiful and untouched beaches exist on a tiny island just off the the coast of Bali, called Nusa Penida. The island itself is thick with jungle, and getting from one side to the other is tricky because of the state the roads are in, but the journey is worth it. With beaches such as Kelingking and Diamond beach on offer, each bump in the car ride is justified to experience such beauty and tranquility.
Cape Town, South Africa
“It’s hard to describe the beauty of Cape Town.” Appi Alla says. “With the mountains on one side and the sea on the other, the city nestled between the two exists in one of the most breathtaking spaces in the world.” It’s beaches are worth writing home about, too. From llandudno to Camps Bay, Clifton to Noordhoek, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing which beach you’d like to spend your time at. Whatever you’re choice, you’ll never be disappointed.
Koh Tao, Thailand
“Koh Tao is well-known for being a diving hotspot.” Appi Alla says. “And for good reason – the water is crystal clear and the oceans are full of interesting sea life and underwater flora.” If diving isn’t your thing, the island is also covered in a number of spectacular beaches, all of which make for good swimming, snorkelling, or simply lazing a few slow hours away in the sun.
There’s a lot of allure to backpacking. Find out exactly what you need to ensure your trip goes off without a hitch with Appi Alla.
Whether you’re a recent high school graduate, an office worker taking a sojourn from the daily grind or a couple in your golden years looking for adventure, backpacking is an activity that almost anyone can do. There’s something romantic about the idea of exploring the world with everything you need directly on your back whether it’s through Europe, Asia, Africa or South America. But one of the obvious limitations of travelling this way is space. It’s vital that you pack only what you need, and to aid you on your upcoming trip, we’ve put together a list of backpacking essentials with the help of travel enthusiast Appi Alla. Read more below.
A ultralight down jacket
Most backpackers choose destinations with a warm and temperate climate for two reasons – because who wouldn’t want to spend an entirety in summer, and because it means that they’ll only have to pack much lighter, summer clothing. According to Appi Alla, however, you should never eschew a warm jacket. Buses, trains and airplanes all sometimes crank the air conditioning, and a down jacket will be a life saver in that environment. Likewise, you can plan you trip as carefully as you want, but you’ll never be able to prepare for the weather. An ultralight down jacket is super lightweight and compact but will still keep you warm wherever you are.
A power bank
“If you’re reading this on your mobile device then you’re definitely going to need a power bank.” Appi Alla says. “Because you might find yourself in between plug sockets during your travels, having a source of power to charge your phone, headphones or laptop is invaluable while on the road.” They’re also pretty affordable, come in a number of different sizes, and fit snugly into your backpack without weighing you down too much.
A reusable water bottle
According to Appi Alla, this is an elective item but still very useful. The planet is currently suffering from a plastic epidemic, and while you’re traveling you should be mindful of this fact and try to reduce your impact wherever possible. Having a reusable water bottle not only helps reduce waste, but it also allows you to fill your bottle wherever you are, saving you money too.
As winter closes in, the appeal of travelling to a far-away and perpetually warm destination becomes ever more enticing. Appi Alla discusses.
January and February are often the hardest months of the year in the northern hemisphere. During this time it is the dead of winter, the sun sets incredibly early and it seems like everywhere you look there are mountains of snow. Luckily, when it’s cold in the north, it’s warm in the south, and that means there are always some sunny travel destinations to escape to! With the help of Appi Alla, an avid travel enthusiast, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best ones.
Cape Town, South Africa
Perched right at the bottom of Africa, Cape Town is about as far south as you can go before you hit the south pole! According to Appi Alla, the city is one of the most beautiful in the world, built directly into table mountain and before the Atlantic ocean. It’s famous for its breathtaking scenery, incredible wine routes, and its recent brutal history. Tuck into some of the tastiest seafood, get brown on Clifton beach, or simply drive inland into the country to see some of the most spectacular nature you will ever encounter.
California, United States
While it’s hard to pinpoint a single city in America to visit should you want warm weather, the whole state of California pretty much fulfills the criteria of “beautiful” and “hot”. Known for its amazing wine country, very surfable beaches, and incredible cities such as Los Angeles, California has something for everyone (unless of course you’re looking for snow). Appi Alla recommends road tripping from north to south and stopping at every town and city along the way for a truly radical California experience.
If Cape Town is a little too far south for you, try visit Fes instead. Situated at the northern tip of Africa, Fez is one of the most culturally significant cities in Morocco. According to Appi Alla, it’s also one of the oldest, and nowhere is this more evident than within the medina, the old town center which is also a labyrinth of winding, unmarked streets. Tuck into the local cuisine of tagine prepared in various ways, and visit the Fez tanneries, some of the oldest still operating tanneries in the world, and prepare for some sunshine and maybe a little bit of culture shock.
Best Travel Destinations on a Budget with Appi Alla
Travelling seems like a luxury, but it doesn’t always have to break the bank. Appi Alla explains some of the best destinations to travel when you’re on a budget.
For many, the concept of traveling seems like a luxury that only the well to do can afford. While this may have been the case twenty years ago, these days, thanks to the proliferation of budget airlines all over the world as well as the increasing popularity of travel in general, it’s a much more affordable activity on the whole. Not to mention that some of the most beautiful spots in the world are also some of the most affordable! Below, with the help of Appi Alla, an intrepid traveler with dozens of visited countries under her belt, we’ll take a look at some of the best travel destinations when you’re on a budget.
“When people think of Southeast Asia, they tend to think of Thailand first.” Alla says, “But right next door is an even better alternative – Vietnam.” Whereas Thailand is still a popular tourist spot and very affordable, it’s prices are steadily increasing. Vietnam is extremely cheap, offers some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, and is a culinary delight for anyone with a penchant for Asian food. It’s also very easy to get to, with world-class airports in both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
“Turkey’s currency – the Lira – is currently experiencing a crisis,” Alla says. “It’s value is at a 10-year low.” That makes it the perfect time for a visit if you’re looking to make your budget stretch further! Turkey’s capital, Istanbul, is an incredible mix of different cultures and histories, making it one of the must-see places in the world. An inexpensive meal will set you back $5, while a domestic beer is no more than $3. Food aside, you can easily find a cheap bed and breakfast for around $25 a night.
South Africa’s crown jewel, Cape Town is easily one of the most beautiful cities in the world – and one of the most affordable. According to Alla, you can get some of the freshest and most flavorsome food in one of Cape Town’s many artisan restaurants at a fraction of the price it would cost in the United States. What’s more, the city is surrounded by hundreds of vineyards. These can be visited for free, and visitors can sample a number of different wines for the price of a cup of coffee.
In an age of digital nomadism, having a killer business travel kit is essential. Appi Alla guides you through the list of must-have items for doing your business on the road.
The modern workforce is changing. Whereas before the internet, people were constrained by their location to a desk job, they’re now free to work and travel anywhere. This has bred an entirely new generation of workers known as digital nomads. With nothing more than a laptop and an internet connection, digital nomads have figured out how to make a living while constantly being on the road. But according to Appi Alla, in order to be successful, you’ll need one or two indispensable items in your backpack. We take a look at them below.
A Wi-Fi Device
“Wifi is like water to a business traveller.” Appi Alla says. “Without it, you’ll die.” While she doesn’t mean this literally, without WiFi your business is likely to shrivel up since you won’t be able to send of any pressing emails or projects to clients. It’s therefore important to have a portable WiFi device to ensure that even if you find yourself in a place without WiFi (or in an airport where the WiFi is sketchy) that you’ll always have a way of connecting to the internet.
A Power Bank
Appi Alla says that a power bank is your best friend. Since most of the tools you will use while travelling are electronic – your laptop, your mobile phone, your tablet and your ereader – having a power bank on hand to keep them charged and ready is an indispensable advice. The best thing about power banks is that they’re relatively light and inexpensive, making them the ideal accessory for a digital nomad in a hurry.
A Universal Plug Port
“Since you’ll likely be visiting numerous different countries and extremely different cultures, it helps to come prepared with a universal plug point to connect all of your devices.” Appi Alla says. In Vietnam, for example, the plugs and sockets that they use are extremely different from the ones used in the US or the UK. Luckily, you can grab a relatively cheap universal plug port from Amazon really easily. These little cubes connect to almost every plug post and allow you to connect your devices either by USB or whatever connection they have. It’s important to note that they don’t convert voltage, however, so grab a voltage converter if you think your gadgets might not have the same standard voltage as those of your destination.
Long haul flights are long and tiring, but Appi Alla has a few tricks to make the journey more bearable.
If you’re an intrepid traveller like Appi Alla, then you’ll know that getting on a plane can be an exciting experience. After all, what’s more thrilling that the possibility of seeing new and exotic locations, meeting locals, experiencing new customs and tasting foods you’d never before dreamed of? For all it’s upsides, however, travelling does have a few pitfalls – the physical act of travelling. Long haul flights are particularly grueling. The combination of sitting in a cramped seat and being unable to sleep for up to fourteen hours is enough to make anyone grumpy. And while sometimes you simply have to suffer through it, there are ways in which you can make the journey more pleasant. Below, with Appi Alla’s help, we’ll take a look at a few solutions.
Wear Comfortable Clothing
“I’ve done many long haul flights in my time.” Appi Alla says. “And one thing I’ve seen universally is people wearing jeans or some sort of tight and fashionable clothing.” Instead, always opt for loose fitting and comfortable clothing. You’re going to be in the same seat for up fourteen hours; it’s important that you aren’t restricted. What’s equally important is that you wear different layers so that you can easily remove or add clothing so that your body is at the optimal temperature.
Prep for Sleep
Appi Alla insists that every traveller should pack a decent travel pillow regardless of your destination. There’s nothing worse than dozing off only to wake up with an incredibly stiff neck. You’ll have to do your research to determine which travel pillow is best, but always opt for something that has a combination of comfort and compactness without being too expensive. Other than that you’re going to need a good pair of ear plugs as well as an eye mask to keep out the light.
“Just because you’re stuck in the plane for ten hours, doesn’t mean you’re stuck in your seat.” Appi Alla insists. Stretching your legs from time to time will give your body some much needed exercise and limber you up, but it will also keep your circulation flowing and decrease the risk of developing deep vein thrombosis. You don’t have to do marathons or squats, but getting up every hour or so will do you a world of good.