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News, Interviews and recommendations from High Spirit Bags.

 

Filtering by Tag: travel hacks for vegans

How to Avoid Pickpockets in Spain

Josh okungbaiye

Although Madrid and Barcelona are both wonderful, touristic cities to visit, they are both listed within the 10 worst cities for pickpocketing. Here are a few tips to follow in order to avoid pickpockets ruining your holiday full of fun and sun in Spain.

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1) One popular scam in Spain is pickpockets masquerading as undercover policemen. They are known to approach you on the street and ask for your wallet. One thing you must keep in mind is policemen are unlikely to approach you unless your behaviour seems suspicious; and even so they certainly are wouldn’t ask to go through your wallet without showing you a police badge of his own.


2) Avoid ‘tourists’. If a random person comes up to you asking for directions, you are most likely going to try and help them out. As nice as this seems, you must be aware that the ‘tourist’ might have an accomplice using the distraction to pickpocket you.


3) Don’t get caught in a people sandwich. If you find yourself sandwiched between two people on the street, an escalator, or public transport, be aware that while the person in front may be blocking your way, the person behind you picks your pocket or backpack. In order to avoid theft, always wear your backpack in front of you and avoid keeping valuables in your pockets.


4) Don’t fall for the fake petition trick. Pickpockets will often approach people on the streets with a fake petition to sign. Whether you choose to sign it or not, they will ask you to donate to a ‘charity’ as a way of extorting money. Moreover, while the person holding the petition sign distracts you, pickpocket is focused on stealing your belongings. Therefore, it’s best to avoid strangers approaching you on the streets and asking for donations; don’t be fooled into thinking the money goes to a good cause.


5) Lastly, as fun as they may seem, avoid impromptu roadside games. While strolling down the street, you may come across a few people playing a card game on the footpath. No matter how enticing it is, refuse their invitation to join the game. One, they will cheat to make sure you will lose your money. Two, while you are busy playing the game, pickpockets may be enticed to steal your belongings.

Avoiding pickpockets on the Mexico Subway

Josh okungbaiye

In order to fully explore the huge dimensions of Mexico City, one must use public transport. Here are a few tips to avoid your trip being ruined by pickpockets in such a busy city.

mexico


1)     Avoid travelling on a very congested metro especially at peak times as pickpockets take advantage of the closeness to people’s belongings. Over crowded transport is where an anti theft bag comes in necessary.


2)     Do NOT keep any wallets, phones or money in your front or back pockets as they are easily accessible. Keep your belongings in a safe bag, kept close to you.


3)     Unless an anti theft bag, wear your bag in front rather on the back in order to avoid anyone opening and stealing your belongings.


4)     Have a lock on the zips in order to be extra secure and avoid anyone attempting to open your bag.


5)     Carry as little as possible, i.e the essentials. It is unnecessary to carry all your cash on you, especially in a city where not a lot of money is necessary in order to get around.

 

Nicole Fernandez

 



Top 10 Tips for Travelling as a Vegan/Vegetarian

Josh okungbaiye

(1) Learn Useful Phrases

This tip is very important when you are travelling to countries where English is not the national language. You will have to learn some phrases such as ‘I do not eat meat, fish or cheese.’ 

Saying that you are vegan or vegetarian in the local language is not enough. In some cultures veganism and vegetarianism is still a new concept, so you will have to be extremely clear on your dietary requirements. Keep in mind that in some cultures, refusing to eat someone’s food can be seen as offensive. When requesting a vegan or vegetarian meal in the local language please be apologetic and polite and they will be happy to help you.

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(2) Find Local Vegans

Before travelling to your destination, do your research on the Vegan and Vegetarian community in the country or city you are visiting. See if there are any events happening where you can meet other vegans that can further help you enjoy the local cuisine in the vegan/vegetarian way.

(3) Pack Your Emergency Food Stash

While you are out exploring, vegan and vegetarian snack options will not always be readily available. In response to this, we would suggest for you to carry around granola, dried fruits, or energy bars. So when you randomly get hungry you can quickly grab one of your snacks. In addition, always ensure you pack up a larger stash of vegan/vegetarian snacks in your luggage as back up.

Bonus Tip -

Pack a snack or two for the flight. Don’t rely on plane food, as they most likely will not have vegetarian or vegan options in their menu.

(4) Research Vegan Restaurants at Your Destination

Look up the vegetarian restaurants and cafés in your destination. There are apps/websites such as Happy Cow or Vegan Passport. These apps/websites give you a full comprehensive list of vegan restaurants in your destination.  In addition, the online platforms also have honest reviews, so this will give you a clearer idea of which restaurants to visit during your trip.

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(5) Check Vegan/Vegetarian Options with Hotel

When booking accommodation remember to check to see if they provide any vegan/vegetarian options in their menu.

(6) Book Accommodation with a Kitchen

If you want to have more control over your vegan/vegetarian options. You can book apartments or hotels with kitchens. You can book this type of accommodation through AirBnB.

This will give you the opportunity to shop for your favourite ingredients and it will enable you to have more control over what you are eating. You can also pack some food for when you are going out.

Bonus Tip:- If you are going to be cooking often during your trip, you may want to book accommodation near a supermarket.

vegan food

(7) Book a Vegan Friendly Hotel

Alternatively you can find vegan friendly accommodation if you want the full vegan/experience. In the hotel it is very likely that the guests will also be vegan so you will have a greater chance of meeting new people that will share advice, recommendations and tips during your trip.

(8) Be Clear and Ask for what you want

When you visit a restaurant. Please be aware that you do not have to order what is on the menu. The chef can create a vegan/vegetarian dish for you according to your request.  Please ensure that you are nice, respectful and polite and they will be happy to help you out.

vegan snack

(9) Eat Little Amounts Throughout the Day

Get used to eating small amounts throughout the day. Fruits, nuts, vegetables always take food with you. This will keep the hunger away and keep you satisfied.

(10) Get Involved In the Culture

Before booking your trip ensure that you research the all the national local vegan/vegetrarian dishes and make sure you try them all. See it as one big adventure and remember to fully enjoy the moment.

travel fun travel girl