What exactly is Backpacking Travel? And what qualifications do backpackers need to have? I’ve heard this question a million times, so I decided to answer it and give suggestions.
For those on a tight budget who want to explore new locations, activities, and people, backpacking is an exciting kind of travel. This does not suggest that you must be self-sufficient to be a backpacker, as numerous excellent low-cost alternatives are available today.
What is Backpacking Travel?
Finding new and intriguing people while backpacking is a terrific way to discover other cultures and nations. Backpacking isn’t particularly challenging, but you should have a few attributes before going out on your trip.
A backpacker needs to be self-reliant. Backpacking is typically done either by oneself or with a partner. The best way to discover who you are and what you want from life is to go backpacking alone at least once.
You must be prepared to take some chances and look after yourself. That includes reserving a room, obtaining information, planning meals, and arranging transportation. Success is difficult to achieve if you always depend on others.
Backpacking requires a certain level of preparation. You must have a strategy, gather facts (from the internet or travel guides), and organize your trip. If you don’t make plans, you can find yourself in northern Finland without knowing how to get home. You can save time and money by planning your vacation itinerary and location. Don’t forget to pack your belongings carefully. You could want to lighten your backpack and conserve space.
Most essential, you must be prepared to make concessions. Travelers encounter hardships and difficulties. Long distances must be traveled, terrible conditions must be endured, and unsavory locals with dubious motives must be dealt with. It’s not your honeymoon right now!
Backpacking Travel Tips
As a backpacker pro, I have listed here a few tips that have helped me over the years and will be useful for you too.
#1 Carry a Journal
Carrying a journal with you throughout the travel is a great way to note your experiences. When you’re backpacking, there will be so many memories that you will want to capture. You can make it a little book that contains all your travel stories.
#2 Purchase a Local SIM Card
If you plan to stay in the country for some time, then instead of activating international roaming plans on your existing SIM card, it is much cheaper when you can get a local SIM card. You can take weekly or monthly plans based on the duration of your stay.
#3 Wear Flip-Flops In the Shower
Backpackers prefer to stay in hostels as it is much cheaper and falls within their budget. But this also means that you will have to use the hostel bathroom. Many backpackers have complained of itchiness when they stay in such accommodations. Hence, to be safe, it is smart to wear a cheap flip-flop when you’re showering for hygiene.
#4 Carry Tissues with You
The use of toilet paper may not be that common in many countries. This is why it is smart to carry your own toilet paper so that you can always have access to them when in need.
#5 Go to the Library and Cafes for Free Internet
You can easily save money by avoiding any data plans on your SIM. Most city libraries or nearby cafes have free internet access. This means you can plan the next part of your trip easily for free or download the local area map.
#6 Carry Insect Repellent
Hostels, where you plan to stay, may not be the best for controlling the insect population. Make sure to pack insect repellant if you’re traveling through a warm area. Before you know it, those little bastards who bite will have you in pieces! We’ve all had the experience of having a restless night trying to fend off those bothersome little critters.
Bonus: Backpacking Travel with Your Dog
While you cannot backpack with your dog everywhere as the entire concept of backpacking is to travel for cheap and international travel with a dog will actually be heavy on your pockets. Still, you can always take your four-legged furry friend along when you travel locally.
Local backpacking trips such as hiking are a great way to spend some time with your furry friend. Dogs are always ready for a new adventure. Hence it is best to travel with them. But with certain precautions.
I am a proud owner of three dogs, out of which two are entirely healthy, but one of the canines has had a history of seizures. Hence my backpacking travel trips, which may exert the dogs, do not include this particular pooch due to its medical condition. The lack of an emergency vet is one of the reasons why I find it unsafe to let the dog accompany me. Having knowledge of when to put down a dog with seizures has helped me deal with the situation when I decide to go for an overnight camping with my pets.
If you plan to travel with your dog, ensure they are medically fit. Some outdoor areas don’t allow dogs at all for the same reasons that a place might ask you to keep your dog on a leash. Never take your dog somewhere it isn’t allowed since you risk damaging the area, upsetting a protected species of wildlife, or incurring fines.
The Bottom Line
In contrast to what most people think, you can see that you don’t actually need a lot of money to travel. Just remember to keep time and money under control. Make friends with the inhabitants of the nations you visit if you want to cut costs. They will be able to advise you on how to see the must-see locations, where to find affordable meals, and how to travel like a native. If at all possible, stay with them and learn about their way of life. One of the most crucial benefits of backpacking travel is the friendships you will make.
You have the freedom to learn new things, see new places, and meet new people every day. Keep this in mind. These are the moments when you don’t have to worry about getting up early to go to work, dealing with your employer, meeting deadlines, or having any obligations.
Finally, backpacking is a mindset, a carefree way of traveling, and most importantly, it is an experience that can change your life.