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Packed your suitcase too full, booked your flight at the wrong time or didn’t take note of the local holidays at your destination? These are some of the things that can go wrong during travel planning. But it doesn’t have to be this way! To help your next trip run smoothly, we’ve gathered together seven popular mistakes to avoid in the future.

1. Trying to do too much

Most people do it, and almost all of us end up regretting it: anyone who tries to do too much and see everything they possibly can runs the risk of turning a relaxing vacation into a sprinting race. Of course, it’s best to avoid this as much as you can. That’s why the rule is: less is more. Plan in rest days and also leave room for spontaneous decisions here and there. You can’t see everything anyway – so there’s no need to rush!

Foto: iStock/tapanuth

Photo: iStock/tapanuth

2. Booking your flight at the wrong time

Admittedly: it’s not easy to figure out the perfect time to book your flight. The prices of flights sometimes fluctuate more than we’d like – and not just depending on the booking platform you’re using, but also depending on the time when you book. Important: he who books first, saves most – but not always! Keep an eye on ticket prices for a while to develop an idea of the cost and book your ticket when the price seems right. By the way, if you want additional tips for booking your flight, you can find them in this article.

3. Not taking note of holidays in your destination country

The flight to Thailand is booked, your hotel room is reserved and your anticipation is already on the rise. But all of a sudden you realize: Thailand celebrates Loi Kratong, one of the most important festivals of the year. And when? Of course, the exact day you arrive back at home. But it doesn’t have to be this way! Take note of festivals and holidays well in advance, before you finalize your travel plans. Because honestly: there’s hardly anything worse than missing Loi Kratong, the festival of lights, by just a few days.

Foto: iStock/Ryo_stockPhoto

Photo: iStock/Ryo_stockPhoto

4. Not considering the season in your travel destination

It’s always hot in Vietnam? Nope, no way: for example, if you’re traveling through northern Vietnam in January, you’ll need to plan on daytime temperatures under 15 degrees Celsius. Of course, that’s not a bad thing per se (sightseeing is an ideal cool weather activity), but it’s something you’ll need to be aware of. That’s why our advice is: take the climate in your destination country into account well in advance to avoid unpleasant surprises.

5. Packing your suitcase or backpack too full

This situation is probably familiar to many of you: you’ve just arrived back home and suddenly you realize that half of the clothes you brought on your vacation weren’t worn even once. Hauled along on your trip for nothing – ouch! Particularly for longer trips, it’s a good idea to leave the extra clothing at home, and instead plan to do a load or two of laundry on the road. And in the process, you’ll also make a little more room for a few more cute souvenirs, right? By the way, a while back we put together even more great tips for packing your suitcase or backpack in this article.

Foto: iStock/LuminaStock

Photo: iStock/LuminaStock

6. Not informing yourself in time about necessary vaccinations

Nothing against spontaneity! But for certain things, timely planning is well worth the effort – for example, when it comes to your health. It’s not just that some vaccinations need to be administered several times before they take effect, it’s also true that for entry into some countries a yellow fever vaccination is mandatory. In addition, make sure that you gather the medicines you’ll need for your travel first aid kit well ahead of time. We’ve put together even more information for staying healthy while travelling here.

7. Not having basic skills in the local language

You’d hardly believe how beneficial it is to learn at least a few key words and phrases in the local language before your trip. First, getting around in your destination country will be quite a bit easier and second, the quickest way to break the ice with the locals is to greet them in their native language. You don’t have to spring for an expensive language course. It’s often enough just to study a few words and phrases on the flight over.

Foto: flickr, Horia Varlan

Photo: flickr, Horia Varlan

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