We at Hiker Bible have gathered some essential tips and tricks to make your next adventure a little easier. We won’t go into every single tip and trick under the sun, but we will highlight the ones that are the most important. Often, it comes down to personal preference and availability of equipment in terms of how, why, and what you pack. If you would like reviews on specific gear or technology that we recommend, please visit our GEAR/TECH page to see more. We have also compiled another page to help you find that perfect trip.
But remember, the most important thing is to be…

In this day and age, there are certain things that all travelers need to take along with them to ensure a safe and hassle-free experience. First, a thumb drive with copies of driver’s licenses, passports, and credit cards is a must. If anything should happen to any of your original documents, or if you should need to print out copies, you will have them on you and available.

*Hiker Bible Tip: As a backup, it is advisable to also email them to yourself (and your travel partner if you have one). This falls under the “better safe than sorry” category of travel.

On the heels of technology, the next thing I recommend for anyone traveling, hiking, camping, biking or whatever is a bandana. Yes. A simple bandana. I have used mine to keep off sweat, bandage a limb, filter coffee, wash dishes (and myself), as well as just about anything under the sun (including keeping it off of you).

The bandana is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can have. It can even become an attractive piece of clothing for a night out if you use it as a head wrap or simply tuck it into a shirt pocket.

Undoubtedly, packing is one of the most important skills a traveler can possess. Being able to manipulate items in a way that maximizes space, as well as placing them smartly to utilize every inch available, is an artform that should be practiced by everyone who goes somewhere else and takes stuff. I practice the cross-fold technique, rolling items, stashing them inside themselves, buying only compressible clothing that serves at least two purposes, and staying light.

Having said all of that, there is one more thing I do: I use packing cubes. That’s right. Packing cubes not only save space (and you can stuff them to the gills), but they also keep everything organized at each destination. No need to keep unpacking and packing items to get to what you need. Pants and shirts go in one. Underwear and shorts go in another. And socks go in another one, usually with my toiletries in a plastic ziplock bag.

*Hiker Bible Tip: Never put underwear and socks together in one place. If you’re traveling in damp/humid conditions (and you’re staying in hostels or sharing bathrooms), the chances of developing some of kind of athlete’s foot and being miserable are pretty high.

The next must-have item is a good notebook (preferably one that is water resistant) and a pen/pencil. In many cases, taking out a cell phone or some other apparatus may not be the best idea, and simply being able to take down information on bus/plane/train schedules, as well as important numbers and addresses minimizes techno-visibility (and there’s a cool, old school aspect to it, as well). Furthermore, a notebook and pen are less obvious and less desirable to those who would like to separate you from your belongings.

If you’re planning on traveling internationally, check out our INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL CHECKLIST to make sure you don’t leave anything behind.