Monday, 22 April 2013


Despite having the travel bug from a young age, I still get no enjoyment from long journey's. With flying, I'm not bothered by the take off or landing or the fact you're miles in the sky, but just how uncomfortable the whole experience can be. Here are some tips I've picked up to make your journey slightly more comfortable.
  1. Flight Socks - when flying, my legs and feet seem to double in size. I found this out the hard way whilst on an 11 hour flight to Vegas with no flight socks. To be honest, flight socks aren't the most comfortable or flattering item to wear, but it'll keep your blood circulating and your legs at a more realistic size. I'd rather wear slightly uncomfortable socks then have the pain of swollen feet, legs and knees. Don't let the name fool you; flight socks are also great for long journey's by car, coach or train.
  2. Neck Pillow - I find it really difficult to sleep sitting up, so when I spent roughly a day on planes and in airports on my way to Australia, I managed to get about 3 hours sleep. I recently invested in a neck pillow for an 11 hour couch journey from Adelaide to Coober Pedy and manage to get much more shut eye then I usually would.
  3. Layers - I wish I was one of those people who could spend hours travelling, but still look glamourous. In reality, my clothes are much more casual and my hair is a mess. Whether you're flying, on a coach or train or travelling to a different climate, it's hard to know if you're going to be hot or cold. I like to layer my clothing so I will never be too hot or cold. I usually have a few pairs of socks, leggings and a spare pair of trousers that can be worn over the top, a vest, t-shirt, jumper and hoody, also having both Converse and flip flops available. This way I can adjust my clothing depending on the temperature and not have to suffer with what I have.
  4. Keep Hydrated - travelling, flying especially, leaves me really dehydrated. I will always buy the biggest bottle of water I can at the airport to take on board with me because I hate how, on long hail flights, they will bring you the smallest cup when you ask for water. I also think flying dehydrates your skin, so I always take a light moisturising lotion on board with me, below 100ml of course. By keeping your fluids up and skin moisturised, you'll feel slightly more human when you arrive at your destination.
  5. Keep Moving - when I was little I would have a giggle at the people doing an inflight "work out", but I'm now one of them. On a recent 12 hours flight from London to Hong Kong, I spent the first 4 hours sat on my arse enjoying a few episodes of New Girl. As I hadn't moved, I spent the following 8 hours with the worst knee pain I'd ever experienced. It hurt to sit down, it hurt to stand but I spent a majority of the 8 hours stretching outside the toilets at the back of the plane. I'm pretty sure I looked like I was limbering up whilst selecting victims to join the Mile High Club with. Your "workout" doesn't have to be much; just go for a walk to the toilets and have a good stretch every hour and give your ankles a twist and knees a bend whilst you're at your seat.
[For more Travel Tips; click here]

Wednesday, 17 April 2013


Wearing: Tee - Topshop
Since starting my new blog, I have been trying to think of a way to combine my love of travel and writing. I have decided on writing Travel Tips; 5 tips that I have picked up along the way that I think other backpackers will find useful. I realise it may not be to everyone's cup of tea, but hopefully it'll help a few on their adventure.
I have been in Australia for 5 months now, but I thought I'd start from the very beginning. Here are 5 things to do before you make your journey to Australia.
  1. Visa - for a backpacker, there are two main types of visa; a tourist visa and a working holiday visa. You can apply for both visa's on the Australian Government website, which is much cheaper then doing it through a Travel Agent. With a tourist visa [link here] you can be in Australia for up to three months but you are unable to work, just travel. This visa is free of charge and you can apply for this as many times as you like. A working holiday visa [link here] is slightly different. You can only apply for this visa once, and you must enter Australia within a year of applying for it. There is a charge of $365 (roughly £247) and, once awarded, you are able to work and travel in Australia for up to a year.
  2. Plane Ticket - finding the best priced flight has been made easy with websites like, but sometimes it's not as easy as booking a return ticket. If you want to stop in a few countries or have an open ended return, I'd suggest using STA Travel to book your flight. You can make an appointment through their website, also receiving £30 off, and they'll find the best deal and book it for you.
  3. Travel Insurance - I bought my travel insurance from STA Travel but, to be honest, I think it was a big mistake. STA Travel are helpful for giving advice so it may be worth asking them what to include in the insurance you buy, but I would advise shopping around, using websites like, as you will be able to find a much cheaper deal.
  4. Bank Account - figuring out how to transfer my money to Australia caused me a lot of stress. The friends I'd asked had transferred their money from their English bank accounts, which meant high bank charges and terrible exchange rates. Hoping to keep as much of my money as possible, I though about taking my savings over in cash but was put off at the thought of being searched at the airport or losing it along the way. I am pleased to say, I found a much simpler solution. Commonwealth Bank is an Australian bank, that also have offices in London. If you make an appointment, they will open a London Transfer and Australian bank account for you. You transfer your money from your English account to your London Transfer account, at a charge of £10, and they will then transfer your money, with the best possible exchange rate, to your Australian account in only 2 days.
  5. Accommodation - before you arrive in Australia, I'd suggest booking accommodation for at least your first two weeks. When you're backpacking, the places you go and the things you see can depend on the people you meet, but at least this way you know you'll have a roof over your head whilst you're struggling to beat jet lag. I have found both and great websites for honest reviews on accommodation. If in doubt, I'd book in to a Base. I have stayed in Base all over Australia and they have always been clean and comfy.
[Fore more Travel Tips; click here]