While there are definitely those that must travel for work, many people think of traveling as a leisurely activity that can really provide some fun and exciting memories. The prospect of travel has become increasingly popular in recent years and people have even started to invest in tiny houses in order to have the funds to go on more trips. The anticipation for an upcoming trip is often filled with both excitement and nervousness, which is greatly heightened depending on the duration and location of the travel spot.
People often worry about things that may go awry on a trip and even the preparation can be quite stressful. While there are some things that are completely out of anyone's control, there are a few things that can be avoided or done in order to make a trip go more smoothly. With the incredible expense that can be endured when taking a trip, it's important to take everything into account in order to have the best possible experience when traveling. While there are some things that are quite simple and are often just overlooked, there are others that can mean the difference between having an amazing vacation and having a less than lackluster experience.
Check out our list of the 15 things that will mess up a trip and 10 things that would improve it and see if this might come in handy for the next travel experience.
25 Mess up: Packing Too Much
When it comes to packing for a trip, there are many people that tend to get a little overzealous when choosing what to bring along. There are a number of different factors that can go along with traveling, from changing weather conditions to impromptu dinners that may require a fancier look.
It can be really tempting to go a bit overboard in order to cover all the bases but this tendency of overpacking can be a real debacle for a trip.
Not only does it make it more difficult to keep things orderly and mostly wrinkle-free in the luggage but it also creates havoc during the trip and a load of laundry afterward.
24 Mess up: Sickness
One of the worst things that could possibly happen during a trip away is in regards to physical health. Prior to heading off to a non-refundable all-inclusive vacation, many people don't put much effort in maintaining their health. On top of that, there have been numerous cases of people getting sick during a trip.
One of the most memorable stories regarding sickness on vacation was in 2014 when The Royal Caribbean cruise line was forced to end early due to numerous cases of gastrointestinal illness.
While this was definitely one of the big headlines regarding cruise line incidents, it's just as important for travelers to be proactive in their health since seasickness can be just as miserable.
23 Mess up: Over-Planning
While people generally think of going on a trip as a way to get away from the rigid work schedules they're used to, it's interesting how many travelers put themselves in an even more hectic schedule during their trip.
Although there will inevitably be a list of activities or sights that will want to be seen, overbooking a vacation can make it extremely stressful and tiresome.
Many people joke about needing a vacation from their vacation from all of the activities they partook in and how much it affected them during and after the trip.
22 Mess Up: Not Properly Researching
When choosing a location for a trip, people often have an idea of where they want to go. From seeking out a beach destination, to choosing a city with a great deal of culture, travelers often think of what each location would have to offer.
Yet, it's a mistake to overlook some of the more obscure things about their intended travel destination.
From researching recent headlines about the area to finding out if there is any unrest in the economic situation, it's important to take these things into account prior to traveling.
21 Mess Up: Lack Of Travel Insurance
Many people don't really think about purchasing travel insurance since it's already seen as a huge expense to take a vacation. While some may see it as a needless expense, it's actually a huge advantage for those willing to prepare for anything that might go wrong. All travel insurance policies differ, but there are different options to suit each traveler's needs, with many providing 24-hour emergency assistance.
From losing luggage to accidentally getting off on the wrong stop and finding oneself in a dire situation, travel insurance can be the saving grace.
Yet, very few people ever opt for travel insurance and the result can be extremely hazardous to the overall fun of a trip.
20 Mess Up: Not Following The Rules
When traveling to different places around the world, it's important to pay attention to the individual laws and guidelines for each location. With laws changing from one State to another, things are increasingly different once flying to other countries.
Some travelers have had the tendency to act out a bit when on a vacation but something that may seem quite small in their neck of the woods might be completely different elsewhere.
Anyone that's seen an episode of National Geographic Channel's, Locked Up Abroad, knows that those that don't follow the rules of the land might find themselves in a dire situation.
19 Mess up: Improperly Storing Toiletries
While everyone has their own way of packing their luggage, it seems like the greatest attention should definitely go towards the toiletry items. From makeup products to lotions and shampoos, these potential leak hazards can really put a damper on a trip if they aren't properly stored. Although it might be tempting to tape up a brand new bottle of everything in order to ensure nothing will spill, the TSA limits quantities of certain substances and bringing along brand new bottles will get them confiscated at the airport. Not only is it a waste of money, but it's also left the traveler without any toiletries once they land.
18 Mess up: Improper Research On Accommodations
While people often put a great deal of thought in where they're planning to go for a vacation, sometimes the accommodations can be a bit overlooked. However, it's important not to try and skimp out to the point where it will affect your trip.
From roach-infested motels to rented houses that are extremely lacking in its amenities, there are a number of horror stories that could have been avoided with more research.
Some of the most recent headlines surrounding rental homes have involved Airbnb rentals that featured everything from completely trashed homes to certain areas that weren't available to the renters.
17 Mess up: Not Taking Baggage Into Account
People have really started to notice increased costs in baggage when traveling. There was once a time when every airline offered certain luggage items for free, along with a ticket. Yet, now it seems to be a rarity and more and more travelers are understanding that it's basically expected to have to pay for bags.
There are some airlines that allow for some free items but it's important to understand every regulation surrounding these items.
From measuring the size of a carry-on to weighing checked-in bags to ensure there are no costly fees at the gate, there are a number of steps that should be taken so that this doesn't put a damper on the overall trip.
16 Mess up: Not Informing Bank About Travel
Identity theft has become a huge focus in recent years and more and more banks and companies are trying to protect their customers in the best way they can. One of the biggest red flags for a bank or credit card company is to see charges from a completely different location.
With many banks and credit card companies covering their customers in case of a theft situation, it's not surprising that many of them would choose to shut off the accounts after a red flag has been raised. In order to protect against this, it's important to inform the bank and specific credit cards of plans to travel.
15 Mess up: Too Much Time In Layover
With airfare being seen as incredibly expensive, it seems like people are always looking to see how they can save in certain areas. One of the elements of travel that people often look at is the decreased price in airfare tickets that have a stop.
People are often drawn to these tickets since it allows for a great way to save a bit of money from the overall trip.
However, it's important to take the layover time into account. Having an extra long layover time can really put a damper on a trip and can waste precious time from a vacation.
14 Mess up: Busted Mode Of Transportation
When it comes to road trips, it seems like everyone can't help but conjure up memories from their childhood or from classic road trip films. It's seen to be a great way to save money and it also allows for a more diverse trip, with stops along the way to really see the sights of the place you are visiting.
However, anyone that has had their car breakdown during a road trip will definitely relay the difficulties that can come from not getting a rental car.
A fully insured rental car can be the difference between having a little hiccup and having a complete catastrophe that ends up ruining an entire trip.
13 Mess up: Not Enough Time Between Connections
When it comes to connections when traveling, there is a lot to take into account. While there are some people that say that things have begun to be a bit smoother in the checking-in process when boarding a flight, the sad truth is that there are also millions of cases of having to check in many hours prior to a flight's departure.
On top of this, there can be huge lines that need to be navigated before finally arriving at the correct gate.
Taking the connection time from one flight to the next or from one bus to the train, it's important to take this into account so that things run more smoothly.
12 Mess up: Keeping All Of Your Money In One Place
There are a number of places around the world that require travelers to have a certain amount of cash on them, rather than just their bank and credit cards. From street markets to food vendors, cash is a must-have for travelers, but that is also something that is known by pickpockets.
There are some cities that are known for having a huge pickpocket problem amongst their tourists, but this can truly happen anywhere.
The important thing to do as a traveler is to be a bit more proactive in where the money is stored. If you keep all the money in one spot, you make it easier on the pickpockets and it can completely ruin a trip.
11 Mess up: Spending The Whole Time On The Phone
With the emergence of the Smartphone, it seems like there are so many different activities that will forever be changed in regards to the overall experience. From going to a concert and seeing everyone hold up their phones to going on vacation and constantly posting selfies on Snapchat, it's important to really take in the experience of a trip instead of spending the entire time on the phone. Many people have tried to take their vacation as a bit of a detox time from their phones in order to really appreciate the trip their on and live in the moment.
10 Improve: Bump Up In Class
While people often cringe at the thought of all the things that could possibly go wrong when taking a vacation, there are also a number of things that could happen to greatly improve the overall trip.
One hugely exciting thing that could happen on vacation involves an upgrade, whether it's a surprise or something that has been fully researched.
There are numerous airlines that offer a bidding platform to get a Plusgrade and there are some airlines that give away First Class tickets for those on standby. The same can be said for hotel accommodation upgrades, which can be a huge boost to make the trip unforgettable in the best way.
9 Improve: Take Advantage Of Points And Miles
There are some people that have specific credit cards that offer miles and points as the main draw but there are numerous other cards and banks that also feature points and miles.
It's important to fully research what types of points and miles might be available to a traveler since so many of them can be used to enhance a trip.
Not everyone keeps count of the miles they've racked up and they might be surprised to learn that they have enough to get a free flight or two on that next trip.
8 Improve: Be Open To Being Friendly While Traveling
Traveling is often thought of as a bit stressful, especially when it comes to the actual mode of transportation. From the other passengers on a train to the person seated in the adjacent spot on an airplane, it seems like there are millions of travelers that tend to be a little closed-off when it comes to those around them.
Yet, being friendly with fellow travelers can really add something to an overall trip.
Rather than focus on the stress of traveling and the more difficult and cramped moments, sparking up a friendly conversation can be a great way to enhance the trip.
7 Be Open To Newfound Friendships
When traveling to different places around the world, some people make the mistake of just sticking with their own little group or travel companion. Yet, being open to a newfound friendship while on a vacation can be a huge boost to the fun of an overall trip. Whether it's mixing with the locals to get the heads-up on the best cuisine in town, or partying with the other travelers at the resort, being open to a potential new friend can be a great way to really make a trip memorable.
6 Improve: Take Part In A Guided Tour
When traveling, some people can become a bit daunted by the number of things they want to see during their trip. From areas with a huge amount of historical significance or exotic locations that have attractions that are completely unbeknownst to the traveler, partaking in a guided tour can be a great way to really take the stress out of a vacation. Not only will it allow the traveler to see things on their must-see list, but it will also help with learning a bit more about the attractions that interest them. This can also be a great way to meet other travelers and tour the area in a way that simply couldn't be done alone.
5 Improve: Get Into The Local Flare
There's a reason why everyone tends to want to pack a Hawaiian shirt when they know they're going to vacation in Hawaii, but that element of travel shouldn't be solely for tropical areas. When traveling somewhere that has a completely different style and flare, a great way to enhance a trip is to fully immerse oneself into the culture and location of the stay. This is the perfect time to jump out of the comfort zone and truly experience all that the location has to offer.
4 Improve: Do Something Out Of Your Comfort Zone
When traveling to a destination that features something that may not be instantly appealing, it's important to try and push oneself out of the comfort zone in regards to activities. From riding on a camel in Egypt to going on a whale watching tour, there are some activities that simply shouldn't be missed when going on a trip. These are the activities that will really enhance a trip due to the incredible memories that can later seem like a once-in-a-lifetime moment. Pushing oneself out of the comfort zone can make the trip that much more exciting and will definitely create picture-worthy moments.
3 Improve: Try Not To Sweat The Small Things
One of the biggest mistakes that people tend to make on a trip has to do with all the little stresses that can come when traveling. It's quite a rarity for every single aspect of a trip to go completely smooth and there will inevitably be something that will try to get under your skin.
From missed flights to arguments with travel companions, it's important to try and think of the bigger picture when on a trip.
Anything that isn't going to completely ruin the trip shouldn't be turned into a huge mishap and travelers that can brush away the small stuff will definitely have a better vacation.
2 Improve: Don’t Be Afraid To Partake In Local Cuisine
It seems like every single travel destination has their very own unique cuisine. Tourists shouldn't stray away from the local fare and, instead, they should really open their palette to trying something new. While it can be tempting to stick with foods that are familiar, testing out the local cuisine might just introduce travelers to their brand new favorite food.
It's also important to take into consideration what each travel destination is known for with their cuisine.
Whether it's getting a slice of deep dish pizza in Chicago or trying some stinky cheese in Paris, taking food into account on a trip can be a great way to enhance the overall experience.
1 Improve: Check Out Some Religious Historical Sites
When it comes to some travel destinations with historical significance, there are many that have ties to certain religious institutions. Yet, this shouldn't be a hindrance in checking them out and seeing something that might create a spectacular overall experience. Millions of travelers head to the Vatican to see Michelangelo's paintings first-hand and they aren't all Catholic. There are so many religious historical sites that should make it on the must-see list, despite whether or not it is religiously significant to the traveler.
Sources: Forbes.com, WashingtonPost.com, Wired.com, NYTimes.com, CTV News, TripAdvisor.com, Thrillist.com, TravelChannel.com