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18 Backpacker Hacks That Everyone Should Know


Tips and tricks for travelling in New Zealand

We like anything to make our lives easier, right? Same goes for backpacking. Being a badass globe-trotter isn’t easy so with that in mind we have put together this whopping list of backpacker hacks that everyone should know!

Learn how to pack right, create your own inflight entertainment,  make some mini speakers for those pre-drinking hostel nights and so much more in this collection of backpacking hacks. You’ll also figure about protecting your possessions while you travel to booking cheaper flights.

For more advice on preparing to come to New Zealand check out: Backpack Vs Suitcase and How to Get a Working Holiday Visa.

Haka Tours

1. No inflight entertainment?

Make your own. Boom.


2. Get cheaper flights

Enable private browsing when searching for flights. You will see cheaper prices. Get more “cheap flight” tips in How to Book a Cheap Flight to New Zealand.


3. Put Milk into a water bottle

For some reason, no one has invented a milk bottle or carton that doesn’t leak when put on its side. Leaking milk in the hostel fridge will make you an annoyance to everyone involved. On the other hand, water bottles are pretty sturdy. Give it a go!


4. Everything is a food container!

Keep containers for your leftovers. Don’t be that person that stores food in hostel pots or bowls in the fridge. You’ll be saving the planet too.


5. Use your camera phone

Take photos of your hostel room number, booking references, and anything else you don’t want to retain in your head. You’ll realise that a phone can be used for a lot more than taking selfies. By the way, have you checked if your phone will work in New Zealand?


6. Roll don’t fold

… your clothes. What did you think we were talking about? This will create more packing space. It’s science and art rolled up into one.


7. Stop liquid cosmetics leaking

We’ve all been there. As Ross from Friends would say: “major shampoo explosion!” Unscrew the bottle lid, place a piece of plastic wrap on top then screw the lid back on. A good backup if the cap bursts open!


8. Stuff shoes and wrap them in a shower cap

Save of packing space by stuffing your shoes with socks. Plus, wrap shoes in a shower cap to protect your clothes.

Michael Coghlan on Flickr

9. Use a pillbox for small items

like jewellery. Ask your grandmother.


10. Dietary Requirements card

Don’t speak the language well? And you have dietary requirements? Sucks for you but there is a hack for this. Carry a card explaining your food allergies in the languages of the places you’re visiting.


11. Put chargers in a glasses case.

Stop cables from tangling. But then where do you put your glasses?


12. Can’t find your clothes in your backpack?

Keep your clothes in separate bags e.g. so all your t-shirts are together.

Garoa on Flickr

13. Roll (almost) a whole outfit into 1 roll like a boss.

Socks, underwear and t-shirt: sorted.


14. Wrap soap in a washcloth.

What the big guy said ^^


15. Stop chains from tangling

Use straws.


16. Make instant speakers

By putting your phone in a cup. Your hostel room just got a little livelier.


17. Exercise like crazy the day before your travel

To reduce jetlag. Find out more ways to beat jet lag with 10 Simple Ways to Get Over Jet Lag.


18. Keep earrings together

Using a button.


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