I wish someone had a one-stop read about what it would take to travel to Asia but most specifically to India, and all the little shit in between. I personally took months to research and plan out a budget and travel itinerary for me, and my Kindred Dane Browne to travel abroad to Asia. After taking my existing travel knowledge, several readings of blog post, travel books, online research and picking the brains of those that had traveled, or lived in these various locations…. this is what I came up with.
A BAG TO KEEP YOU HAPPY
Disclaimer: Some of these are based off of my personal bag Khronicles and may not be specific to your personal needs
Travel File: Itineraries, Receipts for Payments, Contact list (hotels, drivers etc.)
Download a Currency Converter. Trust me when I say it comes in handy when you’re making quick transactions and bargaining.
K Konfession: I went to exchange currency at an off the road money spot, while traveling through Bali. I gave the “scammer” standing at the counter $50 US, in turn he should have given me Rp653,382 Indonesian Rupiah minus the exchange fee. Instead he spoke in his native tongue to his colleague, and then handed me only Rp500,000; which means he would have shorted me nearly $10. Had I not already did my conversion on my mobile converter before entering and observed the listed fees, I would have collected “my coins” and left. Instead I told him “don’t play yourself… give the remaining Rupiah, or all of my money back”. Let’s just say that settled that situation.
VISA- you can prepare your visa at https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html or pay to have it done for you. I am warning you now that if you decide to save some travel coins like me, then prepare your self to ensure every T and I on the checklist is crossed and dotted. This was the most frustrating process for me. The questions asked and the details needed to execute your Visa have to be FLAWLESS.
K NOTE: and when they say that you will need to mail your PASSPORT VIA Fed Ex don’t worry it’s not a scam. It’s honestly the only way to get your passport stamped with a proper VISA.
Iwatch- comes in handy with your currency converter app, time, emails, calls and text all located securely at your wrist
Whats App is the perfect way to stay connected with friends and fam back home and make new connections without running up your phone bill.
Phone Charger– I suggest traveling with two on hand.
Power Plug Adapter– For Bali you will need the Two Pin Plug as seen in Europe, and for India the Three Pin Plug
Go Pro or as I like to call mines “Spike Pro” is the perfect small and lightweight tech devise to capture all of your Khronicles. Don’t believe me check out my TV of Kontent here on the website where everything I personally documented with either “Spike” or my iPhone
DEEP Off bug spray. BEWARE OF MALARIA, ZIKA, and the DENGUE Virus,
First Aid Kit: band-aid, Neosporin, alcohol wipes, etc.
Antibacterial- there will be a time when clean running water is not available and all you want to do is stick your germ infested hands, in your India’s Magic Masala Lays chip bag; cause you were too afraid and smart enough not to eat street side, while shopping in Bandra. This is when you proceed with CAUTION and break out your travel size bottle of Purell
TRAVEL KLINIC PREP:
Prescription of pills such as Malarone will be prescribed for Malariya. This is usually advised to start taking before entering the Caution zone. Take as advised by your doctor.
Typhoid Vaccine– to prepare you for any illness consumed via food or drink. Be sure to schedule this weeks in advance in order to activate it in your system.
DEET & Picaridin are recommended to help prevent mosquitos carring the Dengue Fever
Sealed bottle water ONLY. Even when it’s filtered, it is NOT SAFE to drink. If there is ever a time to become a label whore… now is the time. Look for Bisleri, Kinley and Aquafina to drink.
Arrange All Taxi’s in advance when possible. Partner with your local hotel for recommended car services. Abode Bombay even offers a car service that employ female drivers, which is perfect for you traveling ladies looking to stay safe. Below you will find two of my favorite drivers If you are traveling to GOA- INDIA or BALI
Thomas D’ Souza @ 982.217.4629 TAXI # GA-03-N-1168
Made (pronounce Marí) of RIUNK DRIVER @
(+62) 081558 680 442 or EMAIL email@example.com
THE SHIT NO ONE TELLS YOU
Now I had read and heard horror stories about the monkeys of Bali, and how they are notorious for stealing and sometimes jumping recklessly on the visitors. But never in a million years would I have imagined it happening to me.
K Konfession: “I had just purchased my God Son a t-shirt and just steps away from the vendor shop, two little conniving monkeys completely pulled a jack move. One pulling on the bag that contained the t-shirt, and the other crawling up the back of my dress and on to my shoulders. I also had my iphone attached to my selfie stick in hand, and was more afraid of them taking that.
I held tight to my phone, remained calm and for two seconds had a outer body thought of beating both of them with my selfie stick. But I remained calm and surrendered. Un-hurt and left with only the plastic handles of the shopping bag, and most importantly my cell phone.
It was was later explained to me that they like the plastic from the bags and of course what I had already known, which is to keep all belongings tucked away. Only steps away from the exit gate and I was completely high jacked by two monkeys.
Let’s Talk About It: Some of you act like the concept of bowel movement is foreign and you never had to free your digestive tract of last night’s curry take out. But let’s be honest here, it’s just the facts of life. Words can’t explain how amazing the melodies of spice were in the food Bazaar that we consumed in India. But because I keep it 100% real, and sometimes literally funky here at Kkhronicles.com. I’m warning you to pack a package of Pepto, Alka Seltzer, Tums or in my case all of the above.
This will not be the average experience you get from your local Indian take out or restaurant on Fulton St. This is the real deal traveling ladies & gents. So please come prepared!!!!
FOR ALL MY TRAVELISTAS these tips are specific to INDIA
Wearing a Wedding Ring, cuts down the potential hive of men that will approach you once they realize you are not from India. The ratio of men to women walking on the streets can seem a bit overwhelming at first.
My suggestion to you is to ensure you look fashionably covered, rather it be in traditional frocks, or your modern take on the way to cover. Make as less eye contact with men to avoid the welcoming of conversation. Trust me I had a few guys follow me for casual conversation for blocks, and my eyes were covered in Dior.
Sunglasses are always a great way to add to your “style cover”. They come in handy not only for avoiding welcoming the “Kreepers”, but also great for making those price negotiations with the street side vendors.
JUST IN CASE
Stash a Copy of your ID, Passport & Visa somewhere safe (also email it to yourself and someone you trust)
Make sure your Find My iPhone or suitable application is activated on your cell phone.
Travel Insurance: when your traveling for a long period of time it never hurts to make sure you are covered in case of an emergency.
$100 US cash stash
K Konfession: “On the last day my hotel went to swipe my credit card, and it came back DECLINED. Now I knew I had enough money on the card, but our driver was waiting to carry us to the airport in mid-day traffic, and I needed to bust a move. Thank God I had read somewhere in my research to keep a US $100 bill stashed for emergencies. I pulled out that good Benjamin Franklin, and asked if they would honor US currency, and of course they did not refuse.”
Listen up Kreators, by no means am I trying to scare you with my Guided Khronicles. I just want to pass along some of the bits that I had wish someone could of told me in a 20-minute conversation. Especially for the woman who enjoys traveling, you can see from my khronicles that we have to prepare slightly different than all the travelling gents out there.
You know we can prepare and plan all we want, but Life especially when traveling will take its course. And when it does, stay calm like I did with those two reckless monkeys and proceed or make a plan B. We call many of the destinations that we travel to “foreign”, but that’s only because we don’t know what to expect most times. So do yourself a good favor and educate yourself, so you have some knowledge going into your travels, and it’s not as foreign as it would be having done NO research.
My latest motto in life besides “Kreating Your Happiness” is that “God Open The Sky for Us to Fly” So take advantage and explore “foreign lands”