To celebrate the arrival of summer and our new 30 Day Network Guarantee, we've got 30 top travel tips to help you holiday in style.
Did you hear? We’ve introduced a brand new 30 Day Network Guarantee, so anyone can trial our best ever network for a whole 30 days without worry! Don’t want to stay with us at the end of that period? No problem; you can walk away, with no hassle.
We think that’s a great reason to say ‘yay’, so we’re celebrating that new #30DayYay by counting through some of our favourite ‘30s’ – why not check out our 30 favourite European Championship goals, or 30 number one hits that topped the charts for more than 30 days!
Today, with lots of us now eyeing up our summer holidays, and with beaches around the world beckoning, we’ve pulled together 30 of our best, most essential holiday hacks to smooth our your summer travels…
1. Nail your city break
Big cities are easy to get lost in – even the one you live in. Citymapper works in 31 of the world’s biggest cities, and has all the transport info you could possibly need to find your way around.
2. Plan ahead
If you’re the sort that likes to plan ahead, Relay is going to be your favourite sort of app. It’ll let you download maps ahead of time and pin all the places you want to visit, along with any notes you need, too.
3. Always find the right words
Don’t know the language? No problem – Linguee is a multi-language dictionary bundled into an app, and supports loads of languages. It’ll even read the words out for you if you want!
4. Don’t get caught in the sun
Are you prone to a bit of sunburn? Break out the lotion, obviously, but also download the Wolfram Sun Exposure app for iOS. It’ll calculate how long you can be in the sun based on your location, skin type and the SPF factor of your sun cream.
5. Bag some cheap flights
Skyscanner is a perfect app for nabbing yourself some of the cheapest flights around – just tell the app where you’re going and when, and it’ll give you all the flight options you’ll ever need, from cheapest to most expensive. It’ll even help you figure out the best time of year to fly to save money.
6. Don’t get caught out by exchange rates
Exchanging money is a tricky business, but XE Currency tracks live exchange rates on your phone, so you can always tell if you’re about to get ripped off.
7. Manage your holiday money
It’s not always easy to keep track of who’s paying for what, but Splitwise takes the hassle out of it. Just tell the app who’s paid for each thing, and it automatically does all the calculations for you.
8. Stay on top of your flights
Get the live flight board for your airport of choice direct to your phone with App in the Air. The app will alert you with any status changes and gates for your flight, by text if necessary.
9. Don’t drink the water!
You’d be surprised how many countries don’t have drinkable tap water. Always check the situation before you go, and remember: if the tap water isn’t good to drink, that means you can’t use it to brush your teeth either, and you should keep your mouth closed in the shower!
10. Live like a local
Hotels are great and all, but Airbnb’s privately-hired homes are where it’s at if you really want to live like a local. Not only that, it’s still a much cheaper way to holiday in many countries, particularly if you’re in a large group.
11. Get off the tourist track
Localeur is a must-have app according to our own travel expert Jon Buckthorp. It curates all the local points of interest with reviews from real locals who know the area like the back of their hand.
12. Find a last minute cheap hotel
If you do prefer the luxury of a hotel, download Hotel Tonight – the app always has great last minute deals on rooms, letting you have somewhere booked in the space of 10 seconds.
13. Take your music everywhere
Downloading your Spotify playlists is always a top hack for us – it saves on data and battery, and it’ll give you the incentive to set up the perfect holiday playlist ahead of your trip. But then, with our new inclusive roaming offers, you can always stream as you go too.
14. Bring some duct tape
Seriously. Duct tape is incredibly versatile – you can use it as a temporary bandage or to make a sling, or make it into butterfly stitches, a lint remover or even fly paper! Find out more here.
15. Keep tabs on your data
Our newly refreshed My Vodafone app is another perfect holiday companion, letting you keep a watchful eye on your data and minutes whilst you enrage your friends and colleagues with your sunkissed selfies.
16. Use yoghurt as aftersun
Despite all the best intentions, we all get a bit burnt in the sun sometimes. In the absence of any soothing aftersun, you can use natural yoghurt instead!
17. Don’t get hot feet!
If you’re lucky with the weather, you’ll be spending the whole holiday in your flip flops. But don’t forget to leave them upside down if you ever take them off – that way they won’t be too hot to walk in later.
18. Reading material
Don’t forget to throw a Kindle (or the Kindle app) into your bag before you leave. Amazon’s library has years and years of great reading material, and it’s all way cheaper than buying a book at the airport.
19. Value your valuables!
Hide your valuables in something inconspicuous, like Firebox’s inconspicuous sun lotion bottle safe. Also consider carrying a dummy wallet, and spreading your money throughout your belongings, just in case.
20. Protect your phone
See-through plastic bags are perfect for protecting your phone from sand and water on the beach, and you can probably grab one on your way through security at the airport.
21. Learn how to pack
Check out this helpful video from the good folks at Heathrow Airport on how you can pack like a pro and free up some extra space and weight in your luggage!
22. Bring an empty bottle
Water at airports is expensive, and you can’t take it through security. But you can take an empty bottle through, and then fill it up on the other side for free.
23. Keep important docs scanned in your email
It’s worth having all your documents printed out, but you should always have a scan of anything important (particularly your passport) saved in your email, just in case. Download OfficeLens on iOS, Android or Windows Phone to make this a doddle.
24. Mark your bag as fragile
Mark your bag as fragile and with any luck, it’ll be treated with a bit more care by heavy-handed loaders, and it might even be placed on top of the pile!
25. Use ATMs over banks/currency exchange
ATM exchange rates are based on the wholesale exchange rate, whereas currency exchange counters will charge you more for small transactions, often with a commission on top.
26. Keep rehydrating
And we’re not just talking about water, either. If you’re travelling somewhere hot, you’ll lose a lot of salt and electrolytes as well, so take some rehydration salts with you, and don’t be afraid to tuck into some salty crisps or peanuts!
27. Beat the insects
There are a few cunning home remedies to beat insects. Some people find baby oil helps to repel bugs, whilst rubbing dry soap on bites can stop them itching.
28. Translate text
There’s an even easier way to translate text than Linguee – download Google Translate for iOS and Android, point your camera at whatever you’re reading, and witness the magic. Translate also lets you hold two-way conversations with people using your phone’s microphone.
29. Wear your heaviest gear when flying
This is an obvious one, but worth remembering. Don’t get caught out by excess baggage fees – wear your boots, coat and jeans on the flight, and save the shorts and t-shirt for the other side.
30. Forgot to tell your bank you’re away?
It’s not too late. And you don’t have to call them either, just log into your online banking and notify them that you’re abroad to stop your cards being blocked.
More travel tips: Resident Vodafone travel expert Jon Buckthorp gives us his best tips and tricks for getting the most out of your holiday. And remember: new customers can now roam without worry in more than 40 destinations. Click here to find out more.