152
votes
9answers
19k views

OK we're all adults here, so really, how on earth should I use a squat toilet?

OK so for anyone that's travelled beyond North America and Western Europe you know what I'm talking about. Left: Romania, last year. Right: Turkey, last night. They start popping up in the Balkans ...
135
votes
8answers
49k views

How to intentionally get denied entry to the US, without getting into trouble?

I have a multiple entry visitors visa for five years. I went to USA last year and lived there for one year with my husband (6 months entry and other 6 months of extension). I left USA legally. Now my ...
126
votes
2answers
12k views

Why are airline passengers asked to lift up window shades during takeoff and landing?

I have always wondered why the windows shades have to be raised during take off and landing. I can't think of any safety issues by having a closed window.
78
votes
18answers
4k views

When traveling to a country with a different currency, how should you take your money?

Recently my wife and I traveled to Italy and before we left we got about 85% of our money in travelers checks and the other 15% we carried on in cash. When we arrived there, no one would take our ...
78
votes
8answers
8k views

How to avoid drinking vodka?

This summer I spent some days in Moscow and St. Petersburg. There I also visited a friend at his home. We were there with its family and traditional they drunk a lot of vodka during the meal. We as ...
70
votes
7answers
29k views

Flight tickets: buy two weeks before even during holiday seasons?

There is a common story that airline ticket prices rise significantly if you buy them less than two weeks before departure. And that any time before that will yield standard prices. Is that advice ...
64
votes
7answers
6k views

How to convince airport security that I am not dangerous when having metallic parts in my body?

I had an operation some time ago and now I have small screws in my shoulder which will not be removed anymore. When I decided to fly for vacation, I supposed that these will may bring me into trouble ...
61
votes
13answers
2k views

How do you avoid “tourist traps” when traveling to a country where you do not speak the language?

Too many easily accessible restaurants and attractions cater heavily to tourists, and, in doing so, create an environment that they feel will be comfortable to people from other cultures. Spending ...
60
votes
9answers
4k views

Tactics to avoid getting harassed by corrupt police

In Uzbekistan I was stopped, searched and questioned six times in one day. At the border with Tajikistan, one official tried hiding my paperwork to elicit something from me. In Kyrgyzstan, I was ...
60
votes
6answers
2k views

How can I visit Antarctica?

A year ago I was reading some magazine, and found out that there is availability to get a trip to Antarctica. Unfortunately, there was no info about how I could get there. Do you know anything about ...
55
votes
15answers
29k views

Why would you wrap your luggage in plastic?

At many airports you can wrap your luggage with sheets of sticky plastic. Why on earth would you do that? I only see disadvantages. I can imagine the mess when customs ask you to open your luggage. So ...
51
votes
7answers
7k views

Why do people on airplanes often have tomato juice as a drink?

Tomato juice seems to be a favorite drink for many travelers to have on board an airplane. I've seen this on almost every flight I've been on, but I have never noticed this same trend at ground-level. ...
51
votes
7answers
2k views

How can I avoid or minimize jet lag?

From my personal anecdotal experience, I've found it worse when travelling east around the globe. I also tend to stay awake most if not all of the flight, so sleeping time doesn't tend to matter as ...
50
votes
11answers
2k views

Is there a good website to plan a trip via trains in Europe?

My wife and I have decided to move across Europe by train. Do you know of any good sites for planning a trip via train (schedule and maybe prices)? We're going to go across Europe from east (Russia ...
49
votes
11answers
4k views

How can I do a “broad” search for flights?

Several airline and trip planning sites will allow you to check "I am flexible with my dates" or a similar option. Is there any way to also search more broadly for location? For example, if you ...
47
votes
11answers
3k views

How should I deal with beggars in India?

I heard that it is unsafe to show some money or help for someone in India. Is there any rules I should respect not to get into trouble?
46
votes
8answers
2k views

How to successfully haggle / bargain in markets

While I've done quite a bit of travel now and back myself when it comes to border guards, sorting accommodation and / or transportation, one thing I still struggle to come to terms with is haggling in ...
44
votes
8answers
3k views

Long term travel without being wealthy - how is it possible?

Some people are practically most of the time traveling, from country to country, for a very long periods and sometimes even years. How could one be able to travel for a long period of time, over ...
44
votes
9answers
12k views

Do Russians smile at each other?

I'm planning to go to Russia. For my culture smiling is really common even to strangers. And I heard that Russians don't smile or laugh unless it's something funny or something that make them happy. ...
43
votes
6answers
5k views

Is it possible to make a decent income from travelling the world?

My dream is to be able to travel the world and have a new adventure every day. With the internet, every day I'm able to see this beautiful and unique world, but those are only photos. I want to ...
41
votes
5answers
5k views

Is there a ZIP code I can enter when paying-at-the-pump in the USA with a foreign credit card?

In the USA, many pay-at-the-pump fuel dispensers that accept credit cards require a 5-digit numeric zip code that corresponds to the billing address of the credit card. In Canada, for instance, we ...
40
votes
8answers
12k views

Is it dangerous to go to the USA as a Russian now?

I am a Russian student and I have been dreaming about visiting California and living in LA for a while, and I decided to take this trip on my summer break. I have already accumulated enough money for ...
40
votes
4answers
4k views

I have a tattoo. Can I visit a public swimming pool in Japan?

A friend of mine is currently traveling in Japan. She has a small tattoo on her neck. Now she wanted to visit a public swimming pool but was denied entry. It was difficult to understand the reason ...
40
votes
3answers
8k views

Are Indians as pushy to one another as they appear to be to Westerners?

So I'm in India right now and and idk... it feels like I can't walk more than a few yards without being accosted by someone trying to get me to ride their auto rickshaw or buy whatever it is that ...
39
votes
12answers
2k views

What techniques, tricks or otherwise have you used to get upgrades on flights?

I've travelled a lot. Living in New Zealand or the UK means anywhere is likely a flight, but I've always flown economy. Twice between LA and Auckland I managed to get the exit row after talking ...
39
votes
10answers
4k views

What to do in Las Vegas without having to sin?

For religious reasons, I don't gamble drink alcohol engage in fornication visit prostitution or strip clubs Are there still interesting things for people like me in Vegas? It is a week-long ...
39
votes
2answers
66k views

Is weed still legal for tourists in Amsterdam?

I have heard it's not legal starting from 2013. I also heard they postponed applying this? So what's the deal? Allowed or not?
38
votes
9answers
3k views

When walking on the road, is it safer to walk in the same or opposite direction as the traffic?

I don't know this question will qualify for this site or not, but, I have this question. When you are walking on the road anywhere (any country, city, etc), Which is safer? Walking in the ...
38
votes
9answers
1k views

What are the best ways to avoid data roaming fees when travelling abroad?

I'm looking for data plans I can use while touring different countries within a region without having to worry about being eaten by roaming fees. If such plans exist at all, I suppose mostly big ...
37
votes
10answers
11k views

If, like Edward Snowden, your passport was revoked/cancelled, how can you travel?

As per the news, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden has had his passport revoked by the United States Government. From the article: It was not immediately clear how Snowden was able to travel, ...
36
votes
10answers
11k views

Where is wild camping possible in Europe?

Are there countries in Europe where wild camping with a tent allowed or at least tolerated? How high is the probability that someone will get angry at you or even call the police? Please consider ...
36
votes
6answers
4k views

Japanese etiquette: Most common (and offensive) mistakes?

I am aware that Japan has many unwritten rules of etiquette. What are some of the most common (and offensive) breaches of etiquette made by visitors? On the flip side, what behaviors show respect ...
36
votes
3answers
21k views

How big is “too big” for an airline seat? At what point will you be required to buy two tickets?

As I said in another question, I'm bringing my parents to visit me here in Sweden next year. My mother is around 280-300 pounds and 5'6" (130-135kg, 1.67m). I am concerned that she might be asked at ...
35
votes
5answers
3k views

Will I be able to travel around India speaking only English?

I am to travel around some Indian cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and others. Will I have trouble speaking only English, or should I learn some phrases in Hindi?
34
votes
10answers
4k views

What is the most comfortable way to sleep on a plane?

Some people have the amazing ability to doze off whenever and wherever they are. For the rest of us, sleeping on planes is a constant battle of trying to get comfortable in a cramped space. There are ...
34
votes
3answers
8k views

What section of an airplane offers the smoothest ride?

I know in a bus, for instance, (well, at least on a school bus, when I traveled to out-of-town basketball games in high school) the farther back you are, the bumpier your ride tends to be. Is there a ...
34
votes
2answers
35k views

Why are you now required NOT to smile in passport photos?

Passport photos these days are usually pretty specific - certain size, color, etc. But the odd requirement the past few years is that usually you're not allowed to smile in them. We're discussing ...
33
votes
14answers
2k views

How do you choose a restaurant when travelling?

When travelling almost everyone wants to enjoy a local meal. It's part of the travelling experience. If you're not careful you may end up in an expensive, "extremely" tourist oriented place, which may ...
33
votes
8answers
4k views

Where in the world can you tour a live nuclear reactor?

Are there nuclear plants that allow you to tour the facility and learn more about nuclear power while the plant is running?
33
votes
5answers
1k views

Is it safe to travel in Japan considering the nuclear situation?

Are there any areas that should be avoided and are there any steps I should take to protect myself from radiation?
33
votes
5answers
18k views

When to book tickets from travel sites rather than airline sites?

When booking plane tickets, I generally buy directly from the airline's website (as it is often the lowest or near-lowest price for the destinations I travel between). However, I know there are many ...
32
votes
17answers
4k views

Am I expected to tip wait staff in Europe?

I will be travelling in western Europe, and I would like to dine at the restaurants there. Am I expected to tip the waiter/ waitress? How can I tip them when I am paying the bills by credit card? Do I ...
32
votes
3answers
2k views

If I visit Los Angeles, am I better off renting a car or not?

California has a pretty notorious reputation for having bad traffic, so I am wondering if it would be worth my time to rent a car when I visit there. If I stay within the LA area, is public ...
32
votes
4answers
1k views

Your address at destination: What if you don't know any address?

Often, when entering a country, you must fill a form that asks, in particular, where you will stay. What if you don't know yet? Even worse, what if you don't have your guidebook in hand luggage, and ...
32
votes
6answers
7k views

What happens if you cannot pay for a hotel?

What happens if you cannot pay for your hotel stay because you accidentally run out of money (can happen) or your credit card was blocked (much more likely)? I assume you cannot arrange the money on ...
32
votes
7answers
3k views

How to prevent “Delhi Belly”?

Montezuma's revenge, Aztec two step, mummy's tummy, or Cairo two-step in Egypt, Kurtz Hurtz in Uzbekistan, Bombay belly or Delhi belly in India. A case of the sh-- or Hershey Squirts or The McSh-- in ...
32
votes
4answers
2k views

Can I take this on a plane?

I'm travelling to the UK in a couple of weeks to attend a wedding. While I'm away, I have a university assignment due, and I'm concerned that I might not be able to get it finished before I leave, ...
31
votes
8answers
14k views

Do you have to take the second leg of a flight?

Say I want to book a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Chicago. Say the airline also flies to St. Louis from Fort Launderdale but has a connecting flight through Chicago. If I book that flights from ...
31
votes
5answers
6k views

How to use sink with separate hot/cold taps?

I just traveled to Ireland. I was amazed to find that water sinks (at home, restaurants and public) have separate taps for hot and cold water. If you use only the cold water, your hands freeze. If ...
31
votes
5answers
3k views

What is wrong with eating while walking in Japan? It doesn't seem to be an issue in other Asian countries

I have seen on many etiquette questions about Japan that this is a no no, but I can't seem to find what the reason for this is. I know that in countries like Taiwan or China it doesn't seem to be an ...

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