Traveling is one of the greatest things to do and I am fortunate that I get to do this as a living, way before it was not something that I used to do for a living but I loved it so much that I found the way to turn a big passion into a business and ever since I have never looked back. To give you all some substance on how my passion for traveling started, it was all thanks to my parents which both are extensive travelers as well and when I was little we would go on frequent vacations around Europe and different destinations around the World. I have always been fascinated about hotels, airplanes, tourist attractions and connecting with the locals at one point throughout college I even took hotel management courses of all sorts to understand the industry much more and get a sense of how things go in the hospitality industry along with the restaurant management side of things. Fast forward a couple years later and now I own a travel website where I focus on doing PR & Marketing for hotels around the Globe along with working with the tourism boards to bring in a new perspective on the attractions and promote that to others so they can get a taste of what they can experience at each destination I visit. As a frequent flyer I get hundreds of questions on how I do this so often, keep in mind this is my job and while sometimes it doesn’t feel as a job, it indeed feels like it at times though Today, I will share a few tips to keep in mind for the leisure traveler wanting to travel more and escape from their day to day activities and duties.
Before I begin, I would like to share the following note a reader and follower sent me previously and I will feed off from his comment to begin the series of tips to keep in mind.
Reader Lim from South Korea said the following
“Hello, John Carter
This is Lim S, in South Korea. As i briefly introduce myself, i am working in media planning department in advertising agency. This is to deliver great thanks to your post on instagram.
When I firstly noticed your photo that your are in airplane, i see your facial expression that you are really exciting and satisfying. Which means you seem to enjoy what you do. As i go through your posts, it motivates me alot and it came back to me with one question that ” Am i satisfying with my job?”. I really love to travel where I have never been, and would like to adventure that place all the time but i am restricted by many excuses such as expenses, time, work and especially lack of confidence.
Can i have one sincere tip to stimulate myself to do something that i really want to do?
Sincerely thank you for reading this,
and also appriciate you uploaded Kyungbokgung, photos of South Korea.
i failed to upload this on our blog:)”
Getting messages like that are very humbling as my mission with my travels is to motivate, inspire and encourage others to travel and step away from their comfort zone. Travel alone is a big blessing as you are exposed to hundreds of wonderful things that you haven’t seen before, so without further a due – lets begin.
TIPS TO TRAVEL MORE FREQUENTLY
- The most important tip to keep in mind, traveling doesn’t have to be by air all the time. My biggest tip and advice is to start small and use other sorts of transportation, such as train rides, cruises or even doing road trips. It is a great way to see things easier and explore the hidden gems and its also cost efficient, the money you will be saving on air travel you can spend that by discovering new things by other sorts of transportation.
- This is something I practice quite often and thats being flexible with your travel plans. If you really want to visit a destination be mindful of pricing, if it’s cheaper next week than this week – Hold tight on it and book it for next week. Not only will you be saving money but you will also be able to plan your trip better on the things you really want to do and see.
- Gather a group of friends to travel with. This brings me to topic #1 where road trips, train rides and boat rides. Gathering a group of friends is ideal because you all can pinch in towards hotel, tourist attractions and anything else you all would like to do. It is a great way to save money and re-connecting with friends and get to know each other better. I am a solo traveler but I have always been keen to travel with a selective group of friends to see how things go.
- Be confident in yourself and don’t feel intimated by going to a new place. As an International flyer at first, I nervous of the destination and how I was going to get treated but believe me when I say this. I have gotten treated better at every single International destination that I get treated where I live. Confidence shows your true character so don’t be afraid to get out and explore, connecting with the locals its a great way to break the nervous shell and get used to the vibe of the destination.
- Wanting to build miles? Points? Fly First Class? There is no such a thing as “Free Travel” unless someone else is paying the airfare for you. Though if you would like to fly first class, receive complimentary upgrades, drink champagne and enjoy a bit of the glamorous air travel you need to find a loyalty program that works for you. Wether that be, American Airlines AAdvantage or any other loyalty program based where you can earn elite status by reaching a milestone in their category. If you are Asia based, I would go with Cathay Pacific which is one of my favorite carriers. The loyalty program for airlines is a broad topic so I would select the carrier that works best for you at your home airport with the most frequencies.
- Chase the fare, not the destination. Airlines are getting competitive with one another or as I call it (Airline Alliances) are getting competitive which is a good thing for us flyers because that is the time when airfare tends to drop or tends to be “matched at”. When you see a fare that is “too good to be true” or “dirt cheap” don’t think twice about booking the ticket, book it immediately because chances are that fare will no longer be there or last very long. For example: Last week American Airlines had airfares to Europe starting at $300 from different areas of the U.S. I booked tickets to Barcelona from LAX to MIA to BCN for a total of $600 when the normal price for that airfare starts at $1,200 if not more at times. One of the main sources I use is the @TheFlightDeal which is my to-go team when looking at cheap airfares as they do a great job covering airline deals.
- Don’t worry about staying in Luxury hotels when traveling solo. Save that money and spend it wisely on better things throughout your travels. They are many resources out there that provide a comfortable and safe lodging for a fraction of the cost than what a luxury hotel would cost you, this is for those on a budget wanting to maximize their experience while saving money. At the end of the day it comes down to how much time you are willing to spend at your hotel but I am guessing not much ;). So get out and explore and book something cheap, comfortable and safe.
- As a credit card junkie, I have several few key cards I use for my travels and each card provides a different benefit from the other. I would highly recommend looking into a credit card that you can use often where you can obtain hotel points, airline miles, and even hotel status. Use your credit cards wisely and play with the cut off date of each, that will allow you to maximize the value of the cards and be able to obtain the benefits it offers. 80% of my travels are taken care of via credit cards spend.
- Saving money = the ultimate trip. This tip comes to those who are on a budget and wanting to travel but not so frequent. Every now and then you meet people who share some of the destinations that they are wanting to visit and others share “their ultimate trip”. Saving money is my biggest advice, this will allow you to do everything you can imagine, sounds obvious I know but it is vital that you save as much as you can so you are able to maximize your travel to the fullest and stay at the hotel that you’ve been wanting to. Way before I started traveling like I do now and would travel for leisure, I would save and then spend it on the destinations I wanted to visit.
- Book one way fares for a better deal. I have the tendency to book one way fares because normally thats much cheaper. I will book my return flight while I am at my destination, I do keep an eye on the fares to see which date is cheaper than the other and I will go ahead and book them. It takes research and knowing how to search for the best airfares but a one way fare ticket will get you where you want to be for a fraction of the cost. Keep in mind this works well within the U.S, sometimes from Europe and the Middle East.
I hope you all find these tips useful in your quest of wanting to travel more. For the frequent flyers out there, any other tips to share?