5. Set a budget goal for your trip.
Tourists always wonder how expensive their next country will be in comparison to the ones they have already seen. Try to see how long you can last in a country on a set budget. For instance, “I’ve got five days in Laos, let’s see if $120 US is sufficient?” Setting a budget will force you to actively seek out un-touristy restaurants with local dishes and promote you to choose homestays with local families. Ultimately, you will save money and the money you do spend will go to the people who need it most.
4. Meet 3 new locals per day.
It’s truly shocking how many tourists go to foreign countries without even conversing with a single local other than waiters at restaurants. Ask some of the locals what their favourite local foods are? Were they raised in the same city that they are presently working in? What are the underrated tourist sites to see in the vicinity? Make a habit of speaking to local people on every trip and you will be surprised how much more rewarding your trip will suddenly become.
3. Travel only with Public Transport.
I know it’s easy and super convenient to rent a car or arrange a guided tour during your holiday. Fewer decisions equates to less stress. If stress and time are not issues for you, then hop on some local buses and other forms of public transport like jeepneys, tuk tuks and ferries. Besides saving some serious cash, you will appreciate what the local people have to do on a daily basis in order to get by. In developed countries, local buses provide an excellent way to get the feel for a city for a fraction of the cost of a guided tour.
2. Try a new adventure sport or activity.
Bungee jumping, diving, jet skiing, rappelling and deep sea fishing are only a few of the various activities out there than can get your adrenaline pumping. Just be sure to bring along a reliable video camera to capture this out-of-character experience.
1. Only order food that you haven’t heard of before.
Select a restaurant that is much different from what you are accustomed to eating at. Then select a drink, main and dessert that you have never heard of or tried before. If you have allergies or strict food preferences then you may want to ask a few questions if you know what I mean. If you really want to be extreme, specifically select a small, local restaurant that has no photos on its menu. This way, your taste buds won’t be the only things that are surprised!