Here is a small list of tips that you might find helpful when travelling. They come as a result of my experience of the experience of other people I met. This is not a complete list - this is rather work in progress. Check out also the other sections of this page - you will find a bunch of useful links with helpful info. If you have any suggestions do not hesitate to contact me.
1. TRAVEL LIGHT
When backpacking take the essentials only. Keep in mind that most of the time you will have to carry your big and heavy backpack everywhere. The fewer things you have, the lighter the backpack is and the more comfortable you will be. Also, if you only have the backpack you will not have to check in your baggage at airports and thus avoid extra fees especially when you travel with cheap airlines that charge extra - often the price of the ticket itself - for the checked in luggage.
2. HAVE TWO BACKPACKS - ONE BIG AND ONE SMALL
I find it particularly useful to actually have two backpacks when backpacking. One small and one big. When traveling put the small one in the big one. Once you arrive at your hostel put the most essential stuff in your small backpack such as your PC, documents or money and use that. Leave the big backpack at your hostel so that you don't have to carry all the stuff with you.
3. HAVE A FAST DRYING TOWEL
Often you don't stay long enough in your hostel to have enough time for your towel to dry off completely. You don't want to pack the wet towel into your backpack and leave it there for the next few hours. There are special fast drying towels that dry off quickly. You should have one.
4. MOTION SICKNESS AND FOOD POISONING MEDS
I have a sensitive stomach and I suffer from motion sickness. That is the reason why I always have motion sickness as well as food poisoning meds with me. Trust me, the last thing you want is to have un upset stomach when travelling.
5. HAVE APPROPRIATE ELECTRICAL PLUG ADAPTERS
Not a biggie if you don't have one. You can easily get one once you arrive. It will make your life so much easier.
6. USE POST CARDS TO FIND PLACES TO VISIT
When you arrive at a new destination and you haven't done your research properly and you do not know what places are worth a visit check out a post card stand. The post cards will show you the most important places to visit.
7. HAVE INSURANCE
I cannot stress how important this is. I had an accident in Turkey and was taken by an ambulance to a hospital where I spent one day. Without the insurance i would have to cover all the costs by myself. You only start thinking about it once something goes wrong. Do not be stupid and always have insurance in case something bad happens.
8. MORE THAN ONE BANK ACCOUNT
It happened to a friend of mine that his account was emptied once he used his credit card at an ATM in Brazil. The ATM was hacked and he lost his money. I would recommend not having all the money on one account. Make sure that in case your account gets emptied you still have money on a different account or you have someone who can help you out from abroad by making a money transfer using eg Wester Union.
9. HAVE YOUR OWN 100ML CONTAINERS FOR AIR TRAVEL
I have a few 100ML containers that I fill up myself with soap and shampoo. Every time you empty them you can easily refill them again. This way you will not have to throw away good shampoos and shower gels at security gates only because the containers are too big.
10. CHECK DIFFERENT FLIGHT SEARCH ENGINES TO FIND THE BEST FARE
I recommend using skyscanner and kayak to find good deals. Often times the deals you find on one site are different from the deals on the other site. For instance I noticed that one can find better deals using skyscanner if one simply changes the country. I have recently been searching for flights to South America from Spain and I saw that www.skyscanner.es gives me better deals than www.skyscanner.net