Packing and Backpack Tips

My ridiculously cheap flight on Wizzair in Europe! the cost of flying is low – but be prepared to slum it.

wizz air cheap flights

Greeting traveling guys and girls! Looking for info on how I was able to snag a super low priced airfare on Wizzair here in Europe for $11?!? You came to the right blog. Here’s some info about me. My first tip, you can go to and make sure to search by month. i chose to book something 19 days in advance for 8.99 GBP which translates to $11.22 – a flight from London Luton to Tirana, Albania.

First tip – In my experience of having traveled over 30 months more often than not one can get a cheaper fare by booking in advance, and its better to book something far away from the most popular travel periods, but more in the neutral to average times or in the unpopular times. I just checked to see how much it would be to book the same flight a few weeks from now in June, and its coming back as $48.17 as seen below, but this isn’t the whole story, let me give you some other tips on the true cost of the flight in just a few moments…

The major discount airlines in Europe are these: Ryanair, Wizzair, and Easyjet. These are cheap prices mostly for intracontinental travel in Europe, whereas INTER-continental, meaning over oceans, and flights on full-service airlines tend to be a much more costly form of travel. Just recently I also took a Ryanair flight from Madrid to Marrakech and the cost was around the same $11… however this does not include things like baggage, seat selection, food, priority boarding, a wider seat, first class, running water, or a return ticket, lol, so there are quite a few perks that go missing. Its also an extra fee if you need to change the flight date, in fact you basically just lose the ticket and have to buy a new one.

Let me list out some minuses, services, and perks that are NOT included in the cost of an airline ticket, flying with Ryanair or Wizzair….

#1. The ability to print out your boarding pass FREE, thats right you need to pay for that at the airport, so print it beforehand.

#2. Seat selection, i have been really lucky here, once i paid for a window seat, the other two times i was chosen at random to get a window seat, i guess there’s a lot of el cheapos flying here, because i never got the middle seat. cost of a seat is about $6.

#3. Ability to change or cancel your flight. If you decide you wanted to fly a different day, guess what, you lose your $11 and have to pay again, not the end of the world…

#4. Food and beverage on board. You wont be eating anything unless you pay the exorbitant prices for food or drink on board or at the airport, so just expect to lose a lb or 2 if you are on a budget.

#5. Luggage. This is a big one. For the Wizzair flight above, i brought a 45 liter carry on backpack, max dimensions 115 cubic cm, i also brought a personal item, a 20 liter stuff sack that i bought from Decathlon. i had to pay for what is called priority on Wizzair, which includes first boarding, a trolley or backpack carry on piece of luggage, and a personal item.

#6. Seat Space. You dont get much of a seat on Wizzair or Ryanair, more like 1/2 of one seat. I personally am a male who is only slightly over 5 feet 8 inches tall, i usually say that I am 5’9” and let me tell you i crammed into my seat. Most American and full service airlines offer bigger seats not smaller ones…

A few more tips… I did make it from A to B for the cost of the flight $11, luggage carry on backpack $31.83, so the total price of my style of travel was $42.83. If you possess a 20 to 30 liter pack then the true cost of the flight is $11. Since i was gone for 5 months from Albania before coming back, i decided to go with the 45 just to keep more personal items in my pack.

Ground Transportation – Going from London center or my hood, which was Elephant & Castle, i took 1 local English city bus to the #6 bus stop near Buckingham Palace. The cost of this bus was 1.65 GBP. Here i caught another bus for Luton Airport for 13.6 GBP or about $15. Wait a minute i also took a bus over here in Tirana from Tirana airport to Skanderberg Square, this one cost of 400 Lek, much cheaper than the one in London. 400 lek is actually $3.53 usd. 13.6 plus 1.65 GBP is totaled to $19.04, so we are upto total travel expense of $22.57 for ground travel, and $42.83 for air travel or $65.40, a little more than i quoted you on the $11 flight ticket and actually thats a bit surprising to me that the total was so high. if i had stayed inside London the cost would be $0….

Traveling Abroad for the first time – advice & travel schedule.

usa passport

Your first time overseas as an American international traveler? I can give you some advice on what to expect as well as my travel schedule, just for reference. I recently took a flight via Wizzair for the ridiculously low price of 8.99 GBP from London Luton to Tirana, Albania, granted it was the red eye flight and ill tell you more about discount airlines in Europe later in a related post. I also passed through the borders of England and Albania; as well as, through airport security at Luton airport and customs and border control in Albania. One important thing to note, as a traveler my passport is from the USA, so I was passing from one country that is NOT my home country to another country that is NOT my home country, a little more complex than if I was just returning home.

Here is some of what I experienced, but first of all I’ll give you a bit of background…. I am an American full-time traveler (American passport) who has visited about 20 countries but some of those were not on this trip, and as a child for example, I did not need a passport to visit Mexico (that was quite a few years ago) now you do of course. The same is true of the Bahamas. For England last month it was a super easy entry. I just needed to pass an E-gate that scanned my face in a biometric scanner and my passport in a text scan and image. It was not necessary to speak to a border agent upon entry. This is NOT true if you do not have a passport from the USA or countries like Australia or the EU. For other countries, entry was a bit more complex, So it really depends on the country that you are visiting and your passport of origin.

Most of the time getting a stamp on your passport as a tourist is just a formality. Thailand was a bit harder, more on this in a few sentences. Just as a rule of thumb, the longer you want to stay inside a country the harder it will be. Generally speaking, most countries will offer a tourist 90 days without too much hassle. Here’s one other note about my personal situation. I usually stay 1 to 3 months, so it might be a bit harder to explain that im a tourist for 3 months, if you are going for a week, it may be easier.

Things to check before you leave on your flight, do you need these? There are a few things that you may need to provide upon entry, and here’s the catch, it may be that is the AIRLINE that asks for these, not border control in the receiving country. So sometimes what happens is that the border control never checks to see if you possess an onward ticket for example, but the airline will. I personally had to purchase an onward ticket from Serbia, even though I had no intention of using it. I purchased the ticket via website then i refunded it for no charge within a 24 hour time period. The cost was $72 and after the refund $0.

Do you need to show proof accommodation? How about proof a bank balance? In some countries, you may be asked for these items. I was never asked, but it is suggested that you have a bank balance of roughly 60 to 100 euros per day for visits to European countries, or you can bring some cash in your pocket (but not too much because then it may have to be declared). Individual requirements vary by country. Here is a site that lists roughly the means of sustenance in many European countries. if you have prepaid accommodation, then it is less. Sometimes they may ask you for proof accommodation. I was asked where I was staying in Morocco. I told them the name of a hostel I booked for the first two nights, but this was only for 2 nights, not my entire stay in the country.

Do I need to be vaccinated for Coronavirus? or to have a PCR Test? Its been tough the past two years to be a traveler, but the good news is that virus-related restrictions are slowly going away. Here in Albania, just this month they lifted the requirement to have proof of vaccination. A few months ago upon entry into Morocco, I had to provide both a PCR test taken within 48 hours AND proof of vaccination to BOTH the airline before boarding AND to border control at the airport in Marrakech Morocco. I took the PCR at a clinic in Madrid Spain the day before my flight and had the results emailed to me the morning of (scheduled flight for the evening time). I received the Pfizer doses inside Albania before taking the flight to Spain. Spain requested JUST the vaccination in the form of a scannable QR code. At present only a few countries are totally closed to tourists, the big one being China. Just to make sure of the requirements, here’s my advice, contact the embassy for the country you plan on going to directly. Most of the branches have been very helpful in emailing back the confirmation of entry requirements within 48 hours of my inquiry. You can visit the US Embassy in Morocco’s website here:

Other requirements? Jordan has a requirement that you must have insurance to visit, so for long term travelers this might be an issue. I personally am not residing in the United States so I have no insurance there, or anywhere else (but I’m not yet visiting Jordan). There are some online companies that offer insurance to travelers as well as expats such as World Nomads. Some countries require you to have health insurance in general, and some require it in a specific amount for coverage of infection for coronavirus. You may want to check with your current health insurance company to see if they cover you in foreign countries. Happy travels!

Withdrawing cash abroad, travel tips

A few years overseas has taught me one or two things about changing money and withdrawing it from foreign ATMs using an American debit card. I currently use Citibank because it is reliable and I am satisfied with it. They are also fine with me having a mailing address in New York City and being outside of the USA for an extended period of time, although some other banks are not.

Tip #1: Continue WITHOUT Conversion. When withdrawing money from a foreign ATM make sure to click “Continue WITHOUT conversion” What this means is that you will receive the foreign exchange rate of your home bank and not the one shown on the screen, which is a usually a ridiculous 8 to 10% mark up. I cannot stress this enough. Most countries do allow banks to do this, but each country is different. Here in the UK, they offer a free atm fee, but some banks do charge for a foreign card withdrawal. Over in Spain you can find some banks that charge a fee and some do not. Here an example of my 140 British pounds withdrawn at a Sainsbury local ATM without any fee… Citibank charged me $176.60 for a withdrawal of 140 GBP, however Google is telling me $171.20. Citi is giving me a $1.26 to 1 exchange rate. Sometimes Citi charges me a rate closer to the official exchange rate listed on Google, it depends on the country and the currency withdrawn.

foreign transaction atm withdrawal GBP british pounds.
My recent ATM withdrawal at Sainsbury local

Tip #2. Shop around for the best rate. If you are bringing hard currency into a country, you will normally be able to find an exchange office to get bills changed. Make sure to shop around for the best rate. Just recently i was visiting the country of Morocco, one office listed the exchange rate as 10.2 MAD or Moroccan Dirham to 1 USD, whereas another listed it as 10.6 MAD. This is a 4% improvement over the first office.

Tip #3. Dispose or spend closed currencies and change before you leave a country. If you are a budget traveler like me, you mind each coin you spend, after all, as mentioned I’ve been traveling for a few years now. This is a site oriented towards budget minded travelers and backpackers. If you bring coins into a new country, normally you cannot get change for change, for example if i have 20 British 50 cent GBP coins, i wont be able to change these for the appropriate amount of Euros or USD or mad, and it just becomes a dead weight in my pocket when im in the new country. My solution to this is just to spend the coins at the airport on for example something you might use later like snacks or Kleenexes etc. When I left the USA somehow i ended up with $14 worth of coins inside my luggage. It was because i had just barely finished cleaning out my apartment when i boarded the plane. Over in Cambodia nobody would accept them, not even the USA embassy. Finally i found an American guy who was headed back to the States and he took them for me as a favor, but otherwise it would have been just a dead weight in my bags.

Tip #4. Get a fee Free ATM debit card. I personally choose not to follow this type of advice, but im going to soon look into getting an ATM card that doesn’t charge me the extra 3% that Citibank charges. I have stuck with them just because they are reliable and have never had an issue withdrawing money overseas. A few bank accounts and debit cards that i would personally like to research are these… Chase Premium Plus Checking, Betterment Bank, Capital One 360, online sign up only, Schwab High Yield Investor Account. I may very well go with two debit cards just to make sure that I have a backup account should something go wrong with my no fee account.

Tip #5. Have a backup transfer service like Western Union. One caveat, Western Union transfer fees are totally ridiculous, however the good news is that the service is really fast and reliable with outlets all over the world. Over in Morocco i had a friend send me $30. I stepped outside my hotel room and walked less than 1 block to pick it up, using my passport, but i think the total i got was $26. In an emergency this could come in handy if you run out of money. All I had to do was download the Western Union app on my cell phone enter my phone number and email and send my friend a request using her email. it worked great.

Traveling With a Drone – my seizure at Marrakech Airport

Tirana drone dji mini 2

Hey traveling guys and gals! Today I’ll be giving you some tips and advice advice on traveling with a drone to London and other locations. Bringing it into the UK was just fine. I’m sitting here at a Nero Cafe in a gorgeous neighborhood in London called Islington… this is seriously my favorite place in London because its super cute, trendy and not as expensive as some place like Kensington or Notting Hill and its also within about 1 or 2 miles of other places in London like the Thames, Soho and Hyde Park.

small estate in Islington, London

If you dont know me personally, know that I just flew from Marrakech, Morocco to London, England, well not just but on April 27th via British Airways. Here’s a bit more information about me for context . Here in Marrakech, my drone, the DJI Mini 2 was seized upon arrival at Marrakech Airport and held by customs. Want to know why I didn’t know it would be seized? Because there is erroneous information on google … oops! The first result on Google said drones are allowed but this is not for the amateur hobbyist like myself its for a professional who gets a license ahead of time. Luckily upon exit I got it back and now its safely back in my backpack!

Here are a few tips to travel with it… A good rule of thumb is that most middle eastern and north African countries do not allow drones, for example countries like Egypt and Algeria, partially because of security concerns; european countries are much more relaxed. There are a few other countries that don’t allow them. Montenegro has new rules at airport customs. At present, I’m not flying there, but I did bus it through Montenegro and they did not search my luggage at the border, however there are news stories where drones have been seized by customs officers at the airport link HERE. Going forward, I’ll definitely be checking with future customs offices as well as possibly US embassies in destination countries.

One destination I’ve had my eyes on is Paris. Paris is a no fly zone but I think I should be able to launch the drone in the French countryside without having it seized. Here’s a photo I took over in Sutomore, Montenegro..

Drone in montenegro

A few other considerations – one of the reasons I got the Mini 2 drone from DJI is the tradeoff of lower weight and compact size without compromising on professional quality photos. Its 249 grams so about 9 oz. It is also small enough to where it doesn’t require registration in the USA with the FAA as an airplane. The drone controller weighs 13 oz and the case, weighs 13 oz, so around 2.3 lbs total weight. I needed a drone that was small enough to fit inside my carry on backpack which is 45 liters. This foots the bill.

Other drone laws… if you have passed entry into the country I think you’ve gotten through the hardest part. Once inside, make sure to check the flight rules. At present time, DJI blocks any take off of a drone within a certain distance of an airport, perhaps a distance of 1 to 3 miles, worldwide. In the USA, flights above 400 feet are disallowed. As you can see here, the Mini 2 can fly up to an electronically controlled 1600 feet. You can watch me fly this high on my YOUTUBE CHANNEL HERE.

Tips for living inside of a hostel … my experience!

hostel in london

Hello traveling guys and gals! The solo vagabond is currently still staying at one of the cheapest hostels in London, in the northern part of the city! Ill be staying in London hostels for a few weeks time. I’ve been around the world now about 2.5 years so I’ve got a lot of experience living in hostels, here are a few tips to keep your journey safe and avoid any problems at hostels…

#1 Passport. When I check into a hostel most of the hostels dont really ask too many questions about my stay there or who I am. They seem most concerned about my passport, so dont lose yours! It seems as though if you dont have it, you wont be able to sleep anywhere. In most countries, like England, Morocco, Serbia, Montenegro, Greece, Thailand, they all ask for it. I keep it inside my backpack in a packing cube and always keep my backpack with me and locked just to make sure.

#2. Cash or Credit? Make sure to have your passport and the required method of payment. Over at most of the hostels require a down payment via credit card on their site while then paying in cash the remainder of the balance. Make sure to have this available upon arrival or before. One of the hostels required me to pay the entire balance a few days after booking and not at my check in. I prefer to pay in cash, just in case I should have some problem with the CC payment or my transportation. I usually do some research just to see which ATM locally does not charge an ATM fee. also make sure there are no hidden charges from the hostel, some will list that taxes are separate or they charge for a locker etc.

#3. Secure your valuables!! Here’s a big one. In most hostels I go to I hear stories about people losing stuff and missing possessions. When I was over in Valencia, Spain, I had left two items in plain site on my bed, granted they were not expensive things. The items were a can of spray deodorant and a mini carton of orange juice. Perhaps whoever was in the room thought I was leaving them behind, but they were as gone as a ghost upon my return to the room a few hours later. Whenever I go to the shower I lock my backpack or take it with me, or take the keys with me. its my Pacsafe lockable and slash proof bag. Heres the link of my description, a great bag! most hostels have lockers that you can put a lock on. I bring a lightweight Titanium lock by Abus with me to my hostel.

#4. Stay away from the dorm… let me explain… I personally wake up early …. this morning i was up at 6am and by 630am in the shower. I was out the door by 650am even though at present I’m not working, i just had enough of sleep, but most people might sleep for later, especially young travelers. So try not to make noise inside the dorm. That is what most other guests would expect. One of the things i do is to move my stuff in my backpack outside of the sleeping room and even my clothes so that im not banging it around for too long to wake my fellow roomies.

#5 Stay away part #2. This is just another point from #4. if you have a doubt about who is staying in a hostel or they seem shady or dangerous or unfriendly, its best just to sleep there and get out in the AM, go to a coffee shop or to a park, these types of locations are where I spend most of my time during the day just to avoid any issues with any other hostel-goers, granted you could also meet some interesting people there, but if they aren’t interesting or friendly just stay away and mind your own business. This is especially true of the cheapest hostels you may find in a city. Come back around 9pm or 10pm to sleep. Enjoy the city.

#6 Tidy up your bed and the sink… Some of your roomies might become annoyed if you leave food wrappers, trash, Kleenexes, or your possessions scattered around the bed. I usually make a point to pack up whatever I’m leaving in the room in my locker or my backpack and toss anything else in the trash, then i leave. One time I used my beard trimmer over the sink, and the guy after me said hey are you going to clean this up? Well i did of course, i just washed my hair down the sink and that was it, but some people can get a bit more perturbed. Just make sure to be more polite with the trash and it should go smoothly.

#7 Ask to change rooms… If all else fails and you have a problem, you can ask the manager for a switch. This happened to me one time over in Barcelona. Later one night a shady person showed up in the bed next to my bed at the hostel, it was a sex worker, and I’m not even sure if it was a man or a woman. She or he was kind of a ghetto person and didn’t say hello, granted she didn’t bother me either, but I was a bit freaked out. I asked the manager if i could switch rooms but he refused, so i just left at 530am. Whoever this was didn’t come back to the hostel by 530am, and i was checking out the next day anyway. Some hostels will allow you to switch others will not, so it wouldn’t hurt to ask. Good luck and enjoy travel!

Backpacker Essentials… packing lite, detailed item list!

packing lite

Hey fellow backpackers! Here’s my list of detailed items for one bag travel across Europe! In case you missed the summary list and groupings click here for the intro description. The base weight for the new list is 21.54 lbs, this excludes items that i wear while in transit, which as you can see in the summary is about 9.34 lbs. I used a digital OZ scale to weigh my items and plug them into Lighter Pack.

Category 1, Luggage: The first category includes my backpack which is my 3.5 lb. Pacsafe Exp 45 which is the heaviest item that i am bringing. Other items within this category are a 20 liter stuff sack which i can also use as a second handbag aboard the airliner at 5 oz. I also have two toiletry bags at 3 oz each, a disposable shopping bag at 2 oz, a set of laundry bags, and a drone case for my drone and controller. Finally I’ve got two luggage locks, one for my Pacsafe and one for the hostel locker. The total for this category is 5.41 lbs. These are basically containers for other items. Items list can be viewed here.

Category 2, Electronics: The heaviest category of items that I have packed and most expensive is electronics. Ive got a 14″ Acer laptop that weighs 2.7 lbs it fits in the computer pouch of my backpack. I have a mousepad, mouse, AA battery, laptop charger, and a DJI mini 2 drone that weighs 1.5 lbs. I have a phone charger that weighs only 1 oz, and 2 USB cables that are roughly 1 oz each. My google pixel weighs 6 oz but i keep this in my pocket so it doesn’t affect the base weight of my bag. The total weight of this category is 5.11 lbs. Items list can be viewed here.

Category 3, miscellaneous and toiletries: This set of items includes just about everything besides whats in the other categories; things like my toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, tape measure, and scale. It includes 2 pairs of eyeglasses, 2 eyeglass cases, a bottle opener, a wallet, a passport, waterproof bags, reusable utensils, and beard shaver (my beard grows really fast). The weight for this category is 3.04 lbs. The list of these items can be viewed here.

Category 4, camping: I will admit that camping is not for everyone, but i was able to successfully fit a tent inside my 45 liter backpack along with the other items. The tent is a NatureHike Cloud up 2 person that I bought from Its small enough to fit rolled up and weighs 3.6 lb. It includes a ground cover, outer shell, inner tent, close pins and a tent frame. This category also includes a mini lantern for the inside of the tent. The total weight is 3.75 lbs. Items list can be viewed here.

Category 5, clothing, pants: I have to admit I’m still a bit undecided on whether to include a pair of blue jeans for my summer trip. I may go with polyester pants instead and just leave the jeans at home. Otherwise, i’ll take 2 or 3 pairs of shorts and my current pair of McKinley pair of hiking shorts that weigh 8oz. The total weight here is 3.44 lbs. Note: Individual items list can be viewed here

Category 6, clothing, shirts: Here im taking 2 to 3 polyester T shirts, at 3 oz each, 2 tanktops at 2.5 oz, and 3 to 4 lightweight summer overshirts that are button down at 7 oz each for a total weight of 2.56 lbs. items list can be viewed here.

Category 7, clothing, underwear: This includes 6 pairs of polyester boot socks at 2.5 each, and 3 pairs of polyester boxer briefs from Decathlon, weight is 1.15 lbs. Items list can be viewed here.

Category 8, 9, & 10, clothing, footwear, hats, outerwear: I will be taking a pair of flip flops and a pair of water shoes, as well as one pair of boots, but this wont be counted towards the base weight since i will mostly be wearing my boots the total weight here is 4.5 lbs. For outerwear ill be taking 1 light jacket and one pair of tops for long underwear (ill be in Scandinavia). The weight here is .94 lbs. For hats, I’ve got several. These are one bucket hat, another beanie cap for chilly weather, and a baseball cap, as well as a canvas belt and a leather belt, the total weight here is 1.44 lbs. The list of items can be viewed here.

One Bag – repacking my bag for summer! courtesy of

packing for summer

Hey traveling guys and gals! With this post I am going to update my followers on how I plan on revamping my one bag backpack with stuff for summer, and dumping some of my winter garments back into storage over in Albania! I am quite eager to change my wardrobe and lighten up the load!

For starters, you may want to check my original packing post to get an idea of what I am packing, its the Pacsafe Exp 45 backpack.

For starters, here are a few items that I am going to either replace, dispose of, or put into storage in my home away from home, storage unit: My heavy winter coat. This heavy, bulky coat weighs 3.3 lbs. Its by Jack & Jones, its a great coat for winter, but definitely too bulky for summer travel. Ill be replacing this coat with a light windbreaker plus an top of long underwear for men as I may be some areas that are still chilly for summer, namely Scandanavia! This will be a savings of around 2 lbs.

In terms of clothing, I plan on leaving behind one of my pairs of cotton blue jeans, which tend to be very heavy and weigh down in high humidity areas (1.5 to 2 lbs so about 24 to 32 oz!). I may be replacing this with some polyester hiking pants and definitely at least two pairs of shorts. Next, I’ll be revamping my underwear collection by replacing my heavy cotton boxers with polyester boxer briefs (big boxers are bulkier). I am still going to pack 4 outfits. Here is my current set up broken out by item categories and their weights. You can see that it contains a bit of everything. *** SLIGHT CORRECTION HERE, my drone container weighs more than I thought it did about 14 oz, and I didn’t have the Mini 2 drone plus controller broken out as separate items ****

Here is my new set up, its a bit smaller, notice that the base weight has decreased by two lbs. I personally am comfortable carrying a pack that weighs about 20 lbs., although getting down to 15 lb. would also be a plus. One other item that I’ve chosen to eliminate is my power bank which I rarely use that weighs 12 oz. Its an Anker at 23,000 MAH. I just dont have time to charge it often, so out it goes! I will be adding a pair of water shoes for walking around rocky beaches which I love! Packing is personal so it really depends on your interests as to what items you really need and want. Here is the new list:

See you on the road this summer!

Wild Camping … on Tenerife, Canary Islands

Looking for tips on wild camping or backpacking tents??!?! You have come to the right place to see advice on camping! I am a solo vagabond/traveler who does some camping across the globe, although by no means a professional or full-time outdoorsman.

Why wild woods camping and which brands? I came up with the idea to cut down on my spending for housing on my world tour and also because i dont mind the outdoors versus a crowded hostel. Previously, I did not own a tent so this is my first time camping as an adult. A few brand choices for the tent that i considered, Big Agnes, Nemo, MSR, REI and Kelty. Some of these brands have some fantastic lightweight bikepacker and backpacker setups, but most these are hella expensive! Kelty is a brand that is a bit less expensive but also a bit too heavy for my requirement. The volume was also a consideration.

What did I choose? Instead of the high end brands, I settled on buying a Naturehike Cloud up 2 person tent from that weighs only 3.6 lbs and is approximately 17 inches by 6 inches in volume, priced at $120. I ordered this while I was staying at a hostel in Valencia, Spain and it arrived in 2 days. The tent is small enough to fit inside the 45L Pacsafe backpack – space is at a premium! It is also budget-oriented so the price is low enough just in case I change my mind and buy a more expensive one! See some more of my story down below…

NatureHike Tent

What is included in the NatureHike 2 person tent setup kit? Tent stakes, a ground cover, the inner tent, the double shelled outer tent or rainfly, some guidelines, two small stuff sacks, and pre-attached tent poles. As I said the total weight is only 3.6 lbs so this is just perfect for a two-person tent (I am solo but needed some extra space for gear). Now the material is a bit on the thinner side, however it is waterproof and does hold upto the wind, strong enough to withstand one month’s straight camping. Setup takes around 7 to 10 minutes time and condensation is minimal. Good luck out there!

Where to camp? Wherever, but make sure its a hidden spot away from too many buildings or roads.

Tenerife seemed like a great place to start camping due to the weather and also the natural areas of the island. It is very warm there. During the month of March the nighttime temp was somewhere between 58F and 65F, so plenty warm enough – I wanted to be comfortable while sleeping outside. I also brought a coat and a hat, and bought a small blanket that weighed 11oz, and all 3 were needed. The NatureHike 2 person cloud up tent setup was just about big enough to fit myself inside of plus my backpack, shoes, and some food. They do offer free spots to do wild camping on Tenerife, but unfortunately these were still closed due to Coronavirus restrictions. Instead I found a wild spot, near to El Medano, Tenerife, Adeje and Tenerife Airport south. Some people do go up to the mountains or near to Mount Teide forest to camp but up there, it is much colder so its necessary to take some winter gear.

montana roja wild camping
Montana Roja on Tenerife near my spot

The spot I chose was hidden so it was hard for passers by to see the tent. I was a bit concerned for my safety but this is where the security features of the Pacsafe bag came into play. When i was asleep I had the Pacsafe steal cable security to my pants and my wallet and phone locked inside, but the good news here is that I didn’t have anyone bother the tent while I was asleep. The oddest thing that happened was that a woman was calling out to her dog that had wandered away, it was about 4am, and she was speaking a language besides English, so at first i didn’t know what she was saying. Other than this nobody came by the tent at night. It was perfectly safe.

A few tips for wild camping…

Over in south Tenerife, there’s a lot of wind, so I decided to use some extra rocks to weigh down the tent rainfly and straps to keep the windy conditions from blowing it away and if you need even extra wind security, you may buy some extra safety pins to secure my tent for camping. The wind can get pretty bad down there; upto 30 mph. The Naturehike is also really easy to set up and take down. Heres a pic of myself enjoying my hike and camp time near Montana Roja near El Medano, Tenerife… good luck! questions welcome.

wild camping tenerife
wild camping on tenerife

Safety Tips for Travel and One bag backpacking

Hey travel guys and girls. Here are a few tips ive discovered in my travels around the world.

Tip #1: make sure to get references for every service you hire to avoid scams. For example, hotels check the reviews online and book through major sites you should stand to avoid any overcharges at your hotel. You can also book through Airbnb long term lodgings because they protect both the tenant and landlord.

For taxis, my advice would be to book a private vehicle from the airport if you have a lot of luggage as many cabs are rip off artists, especially for tourists. They may attempt to negotiate a rate that is above the metered rate. For me in Bangkok my cab driver tried to charge me 3 times the metered rate. I decided to take a bus from the airport to center city. In Belgrade i got a private driver who was a bit more expensive but worth it given the peace of mind.

Tip #2: Use a lockable backpack. i personally own the Pacsafe exp45. It has a cut proof zipper and fabric. it also has a lockable zipper. I sometimes put my wallet and valuable items like passport and cell phone inside to avoid theft. I also can use the steel cable to secure my bag to a bedpost or my belt while im sleeping for example inside a hostel. This a good idea for being near to people you dont know or trust or for example leaving your hotel room for a little while to go out.

tip #3: I usually put a shirt over my waist to cover my pockets in a crowded area to avoid pickpockets. While i do choose to leave my wallet in my back pocket i still cover and make sure its still there as im walking. i also like to watch my surroundings to make sure nobody is following too closely. THis is especially a good tip for places like a public bus or subway transportation system.

Tip #4: I purchased a Hikvision security camera for my hotel room. as a fulltime traveler i wanted to have a way to keep an eye on my suitcases while i was away from the room. the security camera can go over the Wifi for the hotel and connect to my cell phone so i can see what is going on there from a remote location.

Tip #5: I personally choose to avoid cities and locations that are listed as high crime. My advice would be to check the USA Embassy sites and check to see which are listed as having high street crime. A few locations for example, Venezuela, Colombia, many places in Brazil and Mexico. I have chosen not to visit these locations because of the relatively high crime. In the future I will try to minimize my time spent at these locations. one recent example, Casablanca, Morocco.

Decathlon Ultralight and lightweight items shopping! Packing Advice for onebagging it!

Hey traveling guys and girls! Today i’ll detail a few items i just bought today and why. Decathlon is one of my favorite discount lightweight travel and outdoor stores that is mostly in Europe, southeast Asia, and north Africa! i am not even sure if they have a store in the USA, but know that there is one in Belgrade, Serbia, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Marrakech, Morocco, and Madrid, Spain because i visited all of these stores!

Here are a few things i bought today that i really like… number one is Quechua polyester/cotton blend short sleeve shirt that is very breathable for summer an exercising. The temps over here in Marrakech are getting a bit warm at 80F during the afternoon and i must say this shirt is really breathable and lightweight. It came in at 3.5 ounces for a men’s size large. They carry several variety and the price is reasonable at 59 MAD or roughly 5.9 euros. You can find these here at Morocco’s Decathlon website. The store is located about 4 miles north of central Marrakech accessible by the #37 bus or using a taxi or horse drawn carriage.

Item #2 i bought for today’s trip to Decathlon is this, a men’s eyeglasses case that is lightweight. I actually saw this at the store in Madrid and had planned to purchase this at a date, the weight is only 43 grams or 1.5 oz. my other eyeglasses case weighs 2.5 oz, so the savings is a bit, but if you are a full-time traveler and solo vagabond, the savings is worth it. ill be discarding my original case.

Quechua lightweight eye case

The next lightweight/ultralight item i bought is a foldable spork, spoon-fork combo that i can use to eat while im away from my kitchen. Many times ive stayed in hotel rooms without a kitchen and traveling in a city far from home, i can use the foldable spoon to eat food i buy at the grocery store. The spoon weighs about .4oz or 11 grams so plenty small enough to fit inside my backpack along with a few other tools.