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Wednesday, 1 March 2017

5 best practices for Summer Travel

Summer travel tips – How to travel better in summer


With summer in India right around the corner with some long weekends, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to go travelling. However, things can get pretty hot and nasty during this season. Here are some best practices to follow while travelling during the hot summer season.


These tips will be useful whether you're travelling for a break from your monotonous life, travelling on duty, or if you're one of those with a compulsive travelling addiction.

1. Choose the right destination and book ahead:
This one’s obvious. Better look for and book destinations that will be cooler during summer, in the months March to May. The cool hill stations will be a good choice during these months.

For example, cooler destinations like Shimla can be a better choice than hotter places like Pondicherry. If you’re careful and okay with it, you can go to the hotter places too, as you’ll get the off season benefits. We’ve been to hot places during peak summer, like Goa during April-May. But we’re accustomed to hot and humid conditions and we don’t mind sweating profusely. Only thing is to avoid going out a lot directly under the blazing sunlight on a two wheeler or by walk.

Check out the weather forecasts and temperatures of your desired destination during the time you plan to visit them. There are a plethora of tourist and travel guides online to help you find best times to visit a place as well as weather portals for its temperatures throughout the year. Avoid a hike or a trek as the soaring temperatures can extremely dehydrate you as well as cause serious skin burns. Avoid venturing out much during heatwaves, and avoid visiting places where severe heatwaves are predicted. Oh, and while you book an accommodation, better go for an A.C room.


2. Less baggage:
This is a best practice for any season. But in case you’re a backpacker, it can be tiresome under the hot and humid summer conditions. Try taking as less clothes as possible, wash and dry them overnight, or use a laundry service if your accommodation provides a good one. (Also see : 5 Travel essentials to take while going on a tour - How to travel light by taking the bare essentials.)


3. Wear the right clothes & gear:
Don’t wear heavy or thick clothes. Instead, wear lightweight genuine cotton, linen or khadi garments. Avoid polyester and other synthetic fabrics. Use loose garments and avoid wearing tight ones.

Shoes will boil your feet, so better stick to chappals (slippers) or other footwear that lets your legs breathe. Oh, and don’t forget that cap. You wouldn’t want a nasty sunstroke, would you. A white cap or hat is the best choice as it reflects most of the sunlight, and a black cap is the worst as it absorbs most of it. The same goes for colours of your clothes as well. Lighter the colour, the better you’ll be under the blazing sun.


4. Keep yourself in the shadows:
Keep yourself in the shadows as much as possible, reducing your exposure to the harsh summer sun. Try taking short breaks under the cool shades of trees, buildings or even your vehicle whenever possible. However it could get pretty hot inside the four wheelers or buses if they’re parked under the scorching sun. Avoid going out a lot directly under the hot sun, like on a two wheeler or walking, during 10:30-11:00 AM to 4:00-4:30 PM approximately.


5. Stay hydrated:
Wherever you go, don’t forget to pack adequate water and oral rehydrating salts (ORS) or drink. You’ll need them as you can easily get dehydrated in the hot season. Better accommodate bigger water bottle in your backpack. In remote areas you may not find good drinking water, so pack beforehand. In case you’re using a cab or a self driven four wheeler, you can easily keep the extra water bottles in it. Also, never expose plastic water bottles to direct sunlight, and keep them inside the bag, rather than outside on the bottle holders.


Drink water as much as required and never ignore your thirst. Since you’ll sweat a lot in this hot season, your body will lose electrolytes along with the sweat. Better mix the ORS powder into your drinking water so that it replenishes the necessary electrolytes. Take your doctor’s advice on this as to how much of ORS you need under such hot conditions.

If available in your destination, drink tender coconut water whenever possible. It is a pure and nutritious beverage and a natural source of electrolytes and other essential nutrients.


We hope these simple tips help make your summer excursions better. Did we miss anything? Have suggestions of your own to add? Leave your thoughts and comments below!

Finally, if you simply can’t tolerate the heat, it’s better not to venture much during the hot season. You can always choose to travel during the time you’re comfortable with. After all, we all travel for a break, and not to get tired... Unless you're travelling on duty or a travel addict!

Happy travelling :)



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