Tag Archives: travel advice

That obligatory post about my travel mistakes

It’s like this; I could stay home, or I could travel a lot and make mistakes.  So yeah, I’ve made plenty of mistakes and I’m ready to own all of them.  Cringe along with me, why don’t you? This coat. I visited at least four countries in this coat with it’s gigantic fur collar.  These days […]

The charm of interstitial cities

Getting around by public transportation as a budget minded, independent traveler can be non-linear and inefficient; this is why I love it. The phrase “you can only get there by car” activates my travel machismo and sends me straight to the internet, since I know there must be a way.  An email to a tourist information […]

Paper, plastic, and ATM machines: your plan for spending money while traveling

Shout out to all my fellow cheapskate travelers: you savvy penny-pinchers have taught me so much about budget travel.  In all the focus on saving money, though, the logistics of spending money during a trip sometimes get sidelined.  Every traveler, even a cheapskate—make that especially a cheapskate—should have a money plan.  You’ll need a combination of cash and […]

Language barrier? No problem. How to communicate while traveling when you don’t speak the language

This is me in every country: “Hello, excuse me, I am sorry I don’t speak [name of language] well.  Can you please tell me where is the bathroom/supermarket/train station/cool Romanesque church?  Thank you.  Goodbye.” In spite of being a glamorous international traveler, my foreign language skills suck.  Wait, I take that back, I can roll my […]

Hey budget travelers, where do you like to sleep?

Me?  I prefer a cheap, centrally located, private room.  These days—thank you world wide web—finding a cheap sleep is quite straightforward if you know what you want. Most people assume that since I’m a budget traveler I use hostels.  Hostels are cheap and often centrally located, but I don’t usually stay in them due to the lack […]

Walk like Stevie Wonder and other advice for managing jet lag

Every good story needs a villain.  The villain of my own life story is insomnia.  As someone eager to be the hero of her own story, I battle against insomnia with a combination of protestant work ethic and desperation.  During the past two years I’ve consulted four doctors, completed a 12 week sleeping class, taken three prescription medications, tried acupressure, light therapy, a […]

Want to travel cheap? Stay fit.

I think of budget travel as a sort of prolonged marathon.  There’s the constant walking of course—hours and hours of walking and the occasional sprint brought on by a train delay.  And the climbing.  If you love medieval hill towns as much as I do you’re in for a lot of uphill climbs.  (Pro tip: […]

Traveling in Romania: some myths, some tips, and something about gypsies

Before I went to Romania several people warned me it might be dangerous, that I should look out. Oh man were they right–why just the other morning a calf escaped and took off down the dirt road with his new wobbly legs splayed all about with dad and granny chasing after him. I mean, who […]

A struggle story concerning your travel blogger and her search for waterproof walking shoes

The only time I wish I were a man is in public bathrooms and shoe stores.  While I recognize that I don’t have the anatomy to use a urinal, I am beyond frustrated with shoe stores and their lack of practical options for women.  Let’s say you’re a dude, and you need some decent walking […]

A skeptic’s guide to travel guide books

I use guide books when I travel, but always selectively and with skepticism.  Why am I a skeptic?  Because many guide books are inaccurate and poorly updated.  Here’s a perfect example: for the past 18 years I’ve worked at the same museum, and throughout those 18 years customers have steadily approached our staff looking confused […]