I was going to make this a generic blog post about mistakes first-time travellers make, but then I decided it would be more interesting to talk about my own mistakes–because who doesn’t enjoy laughing at themselves?
I did not chill out on my journey over here
Flying makes me nervous. I get anxious when it comes to time-keeping. I struggle to sleep on planes. These are all warning signs that I’m not going to do well on a long journey. I was so tired by the time I got to Abu Dhabi (I flew Newcastle-London-Abu Dhabi-Sydney) I booked myself a sleeping pod for 3 hours because I was there for 9; I didn’t sleep a wink because I was so nervous about missing my plane. Which was ridiculous because I still had another couple of hours til my flight!
I slept as soon as I got here
As you can imagine after reading the above, I was shattered when I got here. But everyone told me “sleep when it’s night time – ride it out and you won’t get jet lag”. That’s difficult after 37 hours of no sleep so as soon as I sat on my bed I fell asleep; I had jet lag for four days.
I have a classic case of over-packing syndrome
Not only did I have a backpack that was the size of me, I managed to overpack it on numerous occasions–it’s even been labelled oversized at airports (it weighed 26kg at one point). Now imagine a girl 5ft tall attempting to carry that! I literally had to hoist the backpack onto a seat so that I could sit down infront of it and strap it on before standing up.
I blew my money in the first few weeks
“Woooo small town girl out in the big city” I came over with $5000 and after 4 weeks I’d spent nearly half of it. I really don’t advise that.
Similarly, until recently I haven’t really saved my money
Why change the habit of a lifetime? But seriously though, I also wouldn’t advise this.
I forgot my own fashion sense for a while
For some reason, coming out here made me think I didn’t need to care about what I wore (and believe me, sometimes I still don’t look like I care) but when I first got here I wore a bumbag. Genuinely. I wore shorts that came to an awkward length–about an inch above my knee. And nearly the entire time I worked on the farm I could have been mistaken for a man. Sorry fashion world.
Drinking the night before a flight
Now I have no idea why I did this because I know how horrific my hangovers are. But there I was on a night out, with a flight booked at 11am and an apartment inspection at 8. I got in at 5.30am. Safe to say I was there about 2 minutes before check-in closed. That was not a good day, or flight, or very long swurvy taxi journey once I got to m destination.
When we road tripped from Sydney we spent waaaay too long in places
We were meant to road trip from Sydney to Cairnd–we got as far as Brisbane. My first mistake was I only saved for three weeks (see, I wasn’t any good at saving) the second was that none of us knew anything about cars so we got taken for a ride (accidental pun there) and the third was that we stayed everywhere for too long. Ever heard of a place called ‘the entrance’? No? We hadn’t either, there was nothing there, yet we stayed for five days! And we lived on a brisbane campsite for about two weeks.
I have booked more than one long bus journey
I had a horrifically long bus journey from Brisbane to longreach: it took 18 hours. I vowed never to do that again. I’ve just booked a 22 hour coach from Alice Springs to Darwin.
And last but not least, I made my way down the east coast instead of up
I have no idea of my reasoning behind it. It meant that everytime I made mates, I’d ask “where you off to next?” And everytime they’d say somewhere I’d just been.
So there we have it, my first-time traveller mistakes. Try to learn from me, although if you’re anything like me you’ll just do whatever you wanna do anyway! I’d like to say I’ve learned from mine, but let’s be honest, you make the same mistake atleast five times before you realise.