Travelling has taught us so much. No words, photos or conversations can do it justice. We’ve seen some incredible things, been pushed for patience, tested for knowledge, pressed for time but at the end of every day, we reminisce on the past months and can’t help but feel grateful.

Sitting on a long bus ride through Laos, we came up with 101 things travel taught us and we wanted to share them with you. Some of these are serious, some of them are silly, some of them we already knew before travelling, but reading through these may give you an insight to how we’ve travelled and what we’ve learnt over the last 19 months. (Wow, 19 months!) .

Here goes:

  1. Communication is so important. You will not survive without it.
  2. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone & try new things.
  3. Eat street food, all the street food!
  4. Airport lounges with free food are AMAZING. Get in “free” with Priority Pass. Totally worth it if you plan to travel a lot.
  5. Be grateful when you have a bed to sleep in.
  6. Mastering the art of holding your breath for 2 minutes whilst you tackle the roadside squat toilet. It gives us shivers thinking about it!
  7. WiFi all around the world is still faster than Australia. Get it together Oz.
  8. Don’t always follow Lonely Planet or Trip Advisor. ie. Don’t be a sheep.
  9. You will get sick & you will survive.
  10. Apparently, the world has taught us hiking is pretty awesome.
  11. Hand sanitizer is the second best thing ever invented, behind tacos.
  12. Read online blogs to avoid paying $$ for bulky guidebooks. If you do buy a guidebook, rip out the pages of the countries you’ve been or aren’t going too to reduce the size of the book.
  13. The cheapest way to travel worldwide is by bus.
  14. Every. Single. City. has a monument that is a pole.
  15. Sunrise should be seen as many times as possible.
  16. Running with 20kg of weight to catch a train, bus or a flight never gets easier.
  17. ATMs without cameras, don’t use them.
  18. Pack lightly.
  19. Never put valuables in your check-in bag.
  20. Avoid restaurants in the touristy parts of town.
  21. Don’t be afraid to engage with the locals.
  22. Third world countries are more modern than you think.
  23. French fries are in every single country.
  24. As are Pringles, Snickers and Coca-Cola.
  25. Buy a sim card if you are in a country for more than 7 days, especially in Asia.
  26. Research if you can drink the tap water.
  27. Download Google Translate, Trip It, and Offline maps. See here for our favourite travel apps.
  28. Backup your photos, in multiple places. And your computer hard drive.
  29. Make copies of your passports.
  30. Things will go wrong, deal with it.
  31. Public transport will smell, bad.
  32. People will be rude to you. Just smile right back.
  33. Google Maps is very reliable, worldwide.
  34. Always carry an eye mask and earplugs.
  35. Never leave home without packing cubes.
  36. Use a sleeping bag liner when you’re questioning linen.
  37. Always have motion sickness tablets available for ferries and ibuprofen for back pains. Those beds…
  38. Don’t be afraid to use animal sounds if you can’t read a menu.
  39. Try something new every day.
  40. Keep a record of your travels.
  41. Share locally run restaurants/businesses to friends and family, it means the world to these people.
  42. You will master the art of packing and unpacking.
  43. Hand wash your clothes regularly to avoid hefty washing fees esp. in Europe.
  44. Keep copies of your important documents online where they can be accessed securely.
  45. Stay up to date with vaccinations.
  46. See the cities by foot rather than take public transport. You must earn that ice-cream a day.
  47. Sleep with your passport attached to your body on overnight buses or trains worldwide.
  48. Attempt to learn the local language at least for hello, goodbye & thank you.
  49. The local beer tastes the same in every single country.
  50. It’s ok to sleep in a tree house sometimes.
  51. A little sugar in some countries means 4 tablespoons. Yikes.
  52. Don’t trust monkeys, anywhere!
  53. Wear comfortable shoes when exploring, your feet with thank you at the end of the day.
  54. Laugh, every single day.Engaging with the Elephants
  55. Learn how to politely shout at someone (or throw a pillow) when they are snoring in a dorm room.
  56. Always carry spare toilet paper.
  57. The term “spicy” means different things in different countries, don’t get over excited! In America, this means “no kick what-so-ever” (except maybe in Cali/Texas) and in some Asian countries spicy means “ring of fire”.
  58. Pack your own snacks for long bus/train rides.
  59. Bring food to the airport from the cities, airport food SUCKS and is expensive.
  60. Keep a jacket with you on most overnight buses… brrr.
  61. Trust your instincts, your gut knows best.
  62. Ask questions to fellow travellers, you get better advice than the guidebooks.
  63. Ask before you take pictures of people and especially of children.
  64. Don’t get out of your car on a safari in Africa.
  65. Respect the local culture.
  66. Don’t give up on exercise. See here for how we stay healthy on the road.
  67. Not every day has to be a something day, take a break, relax, do nothing.
  68. Go through your photos after every country so you aren’t left with 7000 at once.
  69. Cry, it’s ok to cry when you’re happy, tired, sad or hungry.
  70. Just because a 2-year-old doesn’t wear a helmet on a motorbike, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. Helmets save lives.
  71. Negotiate taxi fares before taking the ride.
  72. Stay in contact with family and friends so they know you’re safe.
  73. Bed bugs are the worst thing in the world. Check your hostel/hotel before you stay!
  74. Wear a fake wedding ring, there’s no need to lose your real one.
  75. Ask for room upgrades, because why not.
  76. Accept you will talk about your bowel movements with people you just met… Ah, travellers diarrhoea.
  77. Always keep some cash/credit card separate for emergencies.
  78. Carry your own water bottle. Save the plastic.
  79. Cheap food doesn’t always mean it will be bad and expensive food doesn’t always mean it’s going to be worth it.
  80. Open your mind & heart to every single thing in front of you.
  81. Don’t walk down alleys late at night, no matter what country you are in.
  82. Traffic lights are rare in Asia.
  83. Learn to dodge cars, motorbikes, cows, chickens and humans whilst crossing the streets in Asia.
  84. You can never stop learning about the world. The more you learn, the less you know.
  85. Things are not “weird”, they are just different.
  86. Share taxis from the airports with fellow backpackers. Look for that backpacking bag!
  87. Don’t over-book your stay or activities prior to arriving somewhere, you never know if you’re going to like it or not.
  88. Stop looking for things familiar to you and start making new ones. Fish soup for breakfast?
  89. Learn to bargain or face the consequences.
  90. Just because you can’t post it online, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Relax, you’ll get WiFi soon.
  91. It’s ok to admit you’re tired when your travelling, it doesn’t make you sound ungrateful.
  92. Overnight buses are a good way to save on a night’s accommodation.
  93. Research how to get to your hotel before arriving, especially if you don’t have a sim card with data coverage.
  94. Always try the local food in every country.
  95. A single drink in one country could mean a triple in another, be careful drinking in foreign countries. Know your limits.
  96. Try find hotels with breakfast included, it takes the edge off the budget.
  97. Indians & Asians are obsessed with Jacob’s muscles.
  98. Expect a cold drop of water for a shower in some countries.
  99. Appreciate hot water when you have it.
  100. Sign up for airline miles and travel credit cards to maximize points. For Americans, Chase Sapphire Reserve is the way to go!
  101. Always take a moment to appreciate where you are, what you are doing and who you are doing it with. Travel is the best thing in this world and Jacob and I have become better people because of it. We wouldn’t change a single day for anything (apart from bed bugs) and we cannot believe how long we’ve been on this journey already… Lucky, it’s not over yet!


Married Days survived; 586