Mistakes I made while travelling

Travelling is an activity that involves learning. I’ve learned a lot over the years from the mistakes I made when travelling. Many bloggers only like to share the positive aspects of their travel experiences. There is nothing wrong with this of course, but I want to be as open and honest as possible with this blog. So let me share some of the mistakes I made while travelling. Most of these are very minor and somewhat comical!

In Prague Czech Republic, I got on the wrong metro on my way from the airport and went in the opposite direction. The most embarrassing thing about this story is that I didn’t realise for a good 20 minutes that I was going the wrong way.

In Istanbul Turkey, I accidentally walked into the men’s toilet. The signs on the doors were not clear, so I took a gamble and picked a random door. A man was leaving just as I was about to enter and he said “no no no this one is for men” which resulted in both of us laughing as I swiftly ran to the other door.

In Podgorica Montenegro, my friend and I booked our accommodation for the wrong dates. This meant that we had accidentally booked to check out a day earlier. So, we were eating lunch 2 hours away in a different city when I got a call from the reception desk asking why we hadn’t checked out. In the evening, we returned to find our clothes and luggage on a chair in reception. Sorry, but I will never forget the image of my bright pink bra literally hanging off the chair! (haha)

In Bangkok Thailand, the first thing I did was head to an early morning clothing market. I had already exchanged my money in England but they gave me very large notes of 500’s and 1000’s. My first purchase was made with a seller who refused to give me my change. This experience taught me a lesson to always exchange money for as many small notes as possible.

In Hamburg Germany, I arrived to find the city full of protestors and riot police. I didn’t realise the flight was only £20 return because I was arriving during the G20 summit…which caused riots. The lesson I learnt from this experience is to always check the dates of national holidays/festivals/football matches before booking flights.

In Brussels Belgium, I booked a hotel room without free cancellation. This was one of my first solo trips back in 2016, and my train got cancelled due to a terrorist attack. The hotel charged me a “no show” fee and I lost £150. Ever since then, I ALWAYS book a room with free cancellation and no pre-payment just in case. The site I use is booking.com.

Not checking reviews before choosing a restaurant. During my first year of travelling, I would literally just eat anywhere. I learnt pretty quickly that not checking reviews can lead to some bland overpriced food with poor service. This is usually more common in areas with top tourist attractions (like near the Colosseum/Eiffel Tower)

Not pre-booking popular attractions. I am not someone who is rigid with a set itinerary, but I generally have a list of places I would like to visit on a trip. In some places, you cannot enter popular attractions without booking and paying online in advance. This happened to me in Porto with Livrario Lello, I had to leave and book a ticket online for the following day.

So I hope you found it interesting reading about some of the little mistakes I made while travelling. You may be interested in reading my solo female travel safety tips.

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