Life Travel On the fly: Lonely Planet’s best ever travel tips
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On the fly: Lonely Planet’s best ever travel tips

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When it comes to travel, getting tips from the experts can make or break your trip. Lonely Planet has released a new guide for Christmas – Best Ever Travel Tips – full of useful hints from the experts.

“For a travel geek, the prospect of putting together a book like this is a dream assignment,” says editor Tom Hall.  “The aim is to pass on universal advice that you can take with you wherever you go.”

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Check out some need-to-know tips from the book below.

Top travel tips from a pilot

Insider tips on getting from A to B from Andrew Pascoe, commercial pilot.

Pack smart

A large part of my job is about routine, and packing is no different. I have individual positions for each important item in my carry-on bag (passport, wallet, phone, etc) so I know where to find it and, more importantly, whether it’s missing.

Pick your timings

backpackerIf travelling a primarily north or south long-haul route with few or no time zone changes, I highly recommend a daylight flight that departs in the morning. You’ll arrive in the evening and have a good night’s rest, waking up fresh the next day. Doing the same flight overnight is a different story.

Be prepared

In the very unlikely event of an emergency, you need to be mobile and ready for anything. There’s nothing wrong with taking your shoes off and changing mid-flight, but during take-off and landing always wear long pants and a good pair of shoes.

Stay hydrated

For long-haul flights I can’t stress enough the importance of hydration, not just during but before and after the flight. So avoid caffeinated drinks, as well as alcohol. I don’t leave home without a bit of lip balm: cracked lips and long flights go hand in hand.

Travel scams to avoid

While you’re often safer overseas than you are in your home town, a few scams seem to pop up all over the world. 

The scam: fake police

Sometimes also real police, they’ll demand to see your passport, find something wrong with your visa but suggest your troubles will be over if you pay a fine. To them. In cash. Right now.

What to do Standing your ground and offering to accompany them to the station will usually see the error ‘excused’.

Beware of the bird poo scam.
Beware of the bird poo scam.

The scam: gem or carpet deals

On entry into a store, often prompted by an enthusiastic taxi or rickshaw driver, you will be offered a deal so preposterously lucrative that refusing seems unthinkable.

What to do Think again – those gems are going to be worthless and the carpet you buy may not make it home at all. There are legitimate traders selling both jewels and rugs, and they don’t act like this.

The scam: Bird poo

The surprising splat landing on you from a great height is followed by the swift appearance of a stranger who towels you down. In the confusion, valuables are removed from your person, never to be seen again.

What to do Move fast. If you seem to have been to have been the victim of a bird strike, keep moving and avoid any offers of help.

This is an extract from Lonely Planet’s Best Ever Travel Tips by Tom Hall. 

Available in stores now, $14.99.

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