Whether you’ve traveled a lot in your life – or have hardly really ventured out much at all – it never hurts to brush up on a few top travel tips. Although different advice may apply depending on where you’ll be going, there is a core set of tips that make sense no matter where you’re heading. These tips will help keep you safe, save you money – and have the absolute best time possible. Learn more by reading on below.

1. Don’t Over-Pack

One of the most common mistakes that people make when traveling is bringing too many things. You don’t really need to bring a fresh change of clothes for each day – there should be laundromats, for example. Contending with a massive, bulging suitcase at each stop is never any fun. Pare your belongings down to as few as possible to have the easiest time.

2. Notify Your Embassy

If you’ll be traveling out of the country, it never hurts to notify your embassy. Give them your basic travel itinerary and contact information. That way, if an emergency arises back home they’ll be able to get a hold of you easily. It’s just one more way to gain peace of mind when overseas.

3. Obey All Local Laws

Different countries have different laws. Research what the laws of the country you’ll be going to are, and make sure to follow them. Nothing ruins travel plans more quickly than getting in trouble with the local authorities. Be conscientious about obeying their rules and you will have no trouble whatsoever during your holiday.

4. Check Travel Sites For Advice

Once you’ve decided on a particular destination, sign up with a travel website and keep an eye on the tips and advice being posted there. Things can change in the blink of an eye, so monitoring those discussion boards and other websites is a smart move. You’ll keep abreast of how things are in the place you’ll be going, keeping ahead of current events and other issues.

5. Buy Travel Insurance

Travel insurance isn’t always necessary, but in some cases it makes sense. If you’re not in top notch health, rely on prescription medications or will be traveling to a tumultuous part of the world, consider investing in a bit of travel insurance for protection.

6. Invest In A Decent Backpack

Being at the mercy of tourist traps selling overpriced drinks and snacks can cost you a lot of money. Invest in a high quality backpack and bring along your own snacks and drinks to tide you over throughout the day. You’ll save a bundle of cash, and you’ll keep body and soul together as you tour the area.

7. Learn The Local Lingo

Another great thing about the Internet is that it allows you to learn a bit of the local lingo of wherever you’ll be visiting. Find out a few key phrases if a different language is spoken, or find out a few popular slang terms so you’re not surprised on arrival. Learning new words is fun!

8. Talk To Others About Their Experiences

If you know someone else who has visited the same place you’re going, talk to them and find out if they have any tips about what you should absolutely see – and what you should avoid. It can be tremendously helpful to get a good friend or family member’s take on a particular area, especially since you know them so well and can trust their opinion.

9. Make A Packing Checklist

In the weeks leading up to your departure, write up a thorough packing checklist so you know everything you absolutely must have. This should include all of the necessary documentation, as well as maps and other important travel information. You don’t want to arrive empty handed!

10. Bring Along The Essentials

Most of the time, it is far cheaper to bring along your own batteries, film and toiletries, if possible. Therefore, stock up before leaving and pack them along. Although you want to pack lightly, you don’t don’t want to spend a small fortune on these things upon arriving at your vacation destination. Plan ahead and you’ll save money and can avoid wasting time looking for these things.