Backpacker Basics

This section is designed primarily for first time backpackers although anyone busy planning their next adventure may find the info useful and it should guide you through some of the boring but important stuff related to going travelling.


PREPARING FOR A TRIP


 QUICK RESOURCES

flights | hostels | backpacker insurance | group travel | travel gear | shoestring guides | visas


Travel Insurance for Backpacking Trips

One of the most important things you should do before any trip abroad. This page should help you understand why getting travel insurance is important and also direct you to a couple of the few companies that are directly tailored towards backpackers and adventure travellers.

guy jumps off cliff


Vaccinations

What vaccinations do I need? This is a common question for anyone travelling abroad. If you’re visiting developing countries and tropical regions you will almost certainly need some as there a lot of rather unpleasant diseases out there you don’t want to end up with. This section should give you an idea of what other travellers tend to opt for as most vaccinations fall into the optional rather than the essential category.

vaccinations for backpacking trip


What to Pack

This section will be of most use to first time backpackers as it is very hard to know what you should or shouldn’t pack ahead of your first trip. The cardinal sin is normally to pack everything you think you might need during your travels, a decision which will quickly come back to haunt you, when you realise that hauling a heavy backpack around for months on end isn’t much fun.

backpacks


Should you take a Guidebook on a Backpacking Trip?

Many travellers are lost without a guidebook and there’s a strong argument for investing in one before you head off on a trip. Others feel that you can become overly dependent on it and it takes a lot away from your experience. We try to weigh up both sides of the debate and guide you towards the answer to the question.

girl reading guidebook


How to Get a Visa

Visas are a right pain and luckily most countries do not require them. It does depend on what country you’re from but often you can turn up at borders unannounced and enter the country normally for free. Some countries such as Russia, China and Vietnam require you to apply for your visa in advance and therefore it is always important to check before travelling to a new country what the visa situation is.

visa


LIFE ON THE ROAD


Getting from A to B

The very nature and thrill of travelling means that you are constantly on the move and that next train, bus, flight or boat is never far away. Here’s an introduction to what it’s like being a backpacker on the move.

train


How to find Backpacker Accommodation

There are lots of options for finding backpacker accommodation. Sometimes it is very easy but finding a cheap place to sleep isn’t always a walk in the park. Here we suggest four different approaches to the task.

hostel


Staying in Hostels – The Basics

If you’re going travelling for a decent length of time and you don’t happen to be obscenely rich then chances are you’re basically going to be living in hostels for a while. You’ll get to know these places pretty well on your travels and any preconceptions about youth hostels will be smashed fairly quickly. Here are some basics to help you on your way.

backpackers hostelhostel people


How to make friends and meet people

A common fear for first time solo travellers is that they won’t make any friends when travelling. Here are 6 ways to make travel buddies when you’re out on the road.

make friends on the road


 Inspiring Travel Blogs

Get some inspiration and an idea of what life on the road as a budget traveller is really like by checking some of these great travel blogs.

first time backpackers