Travel on foot, bike, bus and train wherever possible when you arrive at your destination. You never quite get to know a city until you have walked it. We found a lot of hidden gems in New York thanks to taking only one subway whilst there.
Learn basic phrases in the native language of the country you’re visiting. This can result in friendlier exchanges, better bartering and you’re learning! Check out this helpful BBC page.
Be aware of local customs to avoid causing offence and embarrassment.
- Thailand – Never disrespect the king or images of him (this includes currency). Openly doing so can result in imprisonment and possibly the death penalty.
- Dubai – Some prescription drugs (including some commonly used anti-depressants) are included on the UAE’s controlled list and you should check the status of their medicines before bringing them into the country.
- Venice – feeding pigeons is against the law and could land you with a fine.
- Barbados – it’s an offence to dress in camouflage clothing and you can be fined.
Are you a keen photographer? Holiday snaps are a lovely souvenir but be careful what you capture. You should always check the laws of the country you are visiting to make sure you do not come home with a fine too. Hungary has just introduced a law (March 2014) making it illegal to take a photograph without obtaining permission from everybody in the photo.
Be sparing with the water you use. Take quick showers, re-use your towels and don’t leave taps running whilst brushing your teeth. Our charity of the year is also supporting a clean water project and it’s only £8 to donate and so think about offsetting your use by donating.