The Clever Travel Companion Updates

Changes to Affiliate Program April 25 2016, 0 Comments

We're making some changes.

 

Hey Guys! We're making some positive changes to our affiliate program initially on a trial basis to reflect our desire to develop and drive the program further and our willingness to place more of the focus of our future marketing campaigns on affiliate sales. So let me introduce some of the features that we'll be implementing to the program you're signed up to from today.


 

1. Incremental commissions

Our current basic program offers a 10% kickback for sales generated within 30 days of a customer visiting your site. We'll be implementing a new incremental system whereby sales generated within a calendar month totaling a minimum of $150 will increase your total percentage to 15%, $400 will take you up to 20%, $1000 in sales, will generate a commission of 25% and finally, $1500 of sales within a calendar month will generate a total 30% commission.


2. First Sales bonus

For those of you who have yet to create a sale with us or who haven't generated any sales for over 30 days, we'll be implementing a first sales bonus. In addition to your regular commission kickback, you will receive and extra 10% of your first affiliate sale or first in 30 days.


3. Referral bonus

We understand that most of our affiliates probably have numerous friends or associates in their circles that may benefit from joining our program just as we may benefit from having them involved. With this in mind, we have added a an additional form field to our affiliate sign up form that allows new sign ups to mention who referred them to the program. For all sign ups that mention a current affiliates name, affiliate number, blog name or email address, that partner will receive 10% of the referral's first generated sale in bonus. If you have a large number of interested parties, get in touch with us and we can discuss a tailored set up - So feel free to introduce your friends!

 

Hints and Tips!

1. We're always developing new products and with every restock, there's likely to be a few new additions, including those that are planned for the near future. For now though, if there's any product lines you've not yet had the chance to check out or if you would simply like to take a look as one of our affiliates and perhaps give it a test run or write a review for an upcoming trip, feel free to let us know and we'd be happy to get a sample out to you if it's in stock of course!

2. If you're looking for content ideas, we update our blog and send our subscription newsletter every week or two. If you've not signed up, feel free to do so at the bottom of our page! The blogs and newsletters normally consist of useful information and tips for overseas travel, special uses for the Clever Travel Companion gear like our hacker's guide and reasons why travelers should use them, for example "The Top 40 Travel Scams Worldwide" - In your refersion affiliate account, you have the ability to generate your own affiliate links; in the past a lot of our affiliates have typed up our blogs or newsletters in their own words or posted a short mention and linked to the full blog on our page. This is a great way to keep up general sales and interest without too much effort!

3. We can accommodate special discount codes for your readers or to include on your site or newsletter for special promotions, just get in touch. Please bare in mind that discounts are tracked but not through the affiliate program, so you still need to ensure they're clicking your affiliate link.

4. Don't forget that we ship worldwide and shipping is free on orders over $75!

5. A few months back we updated all our banners and links (creatives) that you'll find in your affiliate account. These link to a new, up to date page on our site and are a little more pleasing to the eye. If you haven't already we'd encourage you to get them updated on your site!

6. For those of you who have been with us a while and would like to discuss our partnership in more detail and if you have any ideas on how to get the most out of our collaboration, shoot Rory an email at rory@clevertravelcompanion.com and we'll talk things over - We'd love to hear from you and get your ideas!

7. Payments are normally made "as and when" often per month or so. We can issue payment at any point (within a reasonable period from sale to ensure refunds/fraudulent orders don't go through) should you request it as long as we have your PayPal email address on file, so don't hesitate to get in touch!

 

You can sign up to the program here

 


The Top 10 Most Dangerous Tourist Destinations in the World April 25 2016, 0 Comments

The Top 10 Most Dangerous Tourist Destinations in the World

Top 10 most dangerous places in the world

The below 10 destinations are ranked as the worlds most dangerous tourist hot spots. You'll probably find yourself thinking "no way", "that can't be right" or even "wow, I've been there" and probably also "of course it is". Some of us may disagree with a few of the locations that have made the list and others might think certain cities have been excluded when they shouldn't have been its worth remembering that this is an independent ranking made up of the popular tourist regions that are most likely to see you run into trouble. Not necessarily fatal trouble, but some form of "ill fortune".

While this list should not be taken lightly, it should also be remembered that there are much more dangerous places on earth and this list is as much a guide of places to visit but also be vigilant. It certainly does not recommend labeling any of these incredible destinations OFF LIMITS.

Along with the reasons as to why these cities are considered dangerous, we'll also provide tips on how to give yourself the best possible chance of keeping safe. So, without further ado; prepare to be surprised! 

 Machu Pichu

10. Peru

When you think of Peru as a tourist destination, you think of the ancient civilizations, Macchu Pichu, the Andes mountains, the unique culture and the incredible landscape to be explored here. You probably don't immediately think that wandering off the tourist trail could be very detrimental to your safety. Terrorist groups and drug cartels have a heavy influence in Peru and you need to remember this at all times. Read up on some safety tips and some Do's and Do not's before jumping in and you will have the time of your life.  

 

Bangkok, Thailand

9. Bangkok, Thailand

Thailand has been South East Asia's tourist hub for years now and is truly one of the worlds most fascinating cities. In Bangkok you are guaranteed to have a memorable time although without watching your step, this could be for the wrong reasons. Thailand has problems with crime and is rife with corruption that has stunted its progression for as long as memory serves. Organized crime is prominent in Bangkok and authorities seem to do the opposite of prevention. In extreme cases, it is not uncommon for tourists to have fatal "accidents" that are followed by bungled, incomplete police investigations. That said, you're more likely to be targeted by a street scam, a police bribe or thief than violence. Keep your wits about you, your valuables safe and hidden and learn to recognize common scams

 

Rio de Jeniero

8. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

You may not be surprised that Rio makes the list, although to consider it "too dangerous" to travel to would be wrong. It's not and if you have the opportunity, you should pay a visit. Authorities have successfully and dramatically stepped up efforts to make the city safer since the 90's when it was classed as a hazard across the board. It is now considered safe enough to host the worlds largest sporting event in the Olympics later this year but you shouldn't take that as an opportunity to let your guard down. Plenty of people are robbed in Rio every year and tourists are continually targeted by thieves and con artists, so make the effort to keep yourself safe. On top of that, there are the favelas. The bottom line when it comes to these are AVOID THEM. By venturing into the favelas, you are opening yourself up to all manner of criminal activity.

 

Israel

 

7. Israel

Israel is again perhaps not such a surprising addition to the list considering is current political and foreign policies. It is however one of those destinations that will change a traveler's life. The history both recent and ancient is as rich and fascinating as you will find anywhere in the world. The reason it makes it on to the list is perhaps unfortunately born out of that history. It is a region that is at continuous odds with its close neighbors and improvised explosive devices, bomb attacks and rockets targeting locals just as much as tourists have become part of daily life in the Holy Land making it particularly volatile part of the world. It's not quite on par with places like Mogadishu or Kabul in terms of violence, but it does see a high level of tourist activity and for that reason, its inclusion in this list is warranted.

 

Bogota, Columbia

6. Bogotá, Columbia

Granted, the capital of Columbia has become a much safer destination since the days of Pablo Escobar and the rule of the cartels. Efforts to increase safety and draw higher levels of tourism have been somewhat successful, the police provide a much higher level of leadership and the city and country is certainly a destination we would encourage to add to your bucket list. Despite this, the narcotics trade is still prevalent in rural areas and traveling outside of tourist areas is not advised. The cartels have an entrenched influence and this can occasionally find its way into larger cities, tourists have been known to be targeted for kidnappings so make sure you keep a low profile.

 

Mumbai, India

 

5. Mumbai, India

Mumbai comes with the expected tourists threats faced in a developing country where extreme poverty and vast wealth meet everyday. Pick-pocketing is an art from in Mumbai and leaving your possessions unattended even for a second is not a wise move so get some Clever Travel Companion gear and be creative with it if you're planning on a trip, scammers also ply their trade on a far too often basis although if you do run into trouble, its unlikely to leave anything but your wallet hurt. Mumbai is considered one of the worlds wonders and checking it out is a must for anyone considering themselves a traveler, just keep your belongings close and you will have an awesome time.

 

Haiti and the Dominican Republic 

4. Haiti and the Dominican Republic

The Caribbean perhaps isn't a place you'd immediately think of when it comes to dangerous tourist destinations, probably more along the lines of paradise. Well, it certainly is paradise if you stay in the resort but we all know that isn't always the best spent vacation. Unfortunately, straying from the resort in Haiti or the Dominican Republic can land you in a heap of trouble; credit card fraud is rampant and bank machines aren't very reliable either. Kidnapping, muggings and even assault are known to happen and while numbers of deadly crimes are dropping, robberies and violence are not. Even resort grounds have a high level of reported criminality. Much of this can be blamed on the immense poverty affecting mainly the Haiti side of the island (which is by far the worst of the two countries) but common sense should also be practiced at all times in both regions, especially when it comes to flashing your wealth around, so keep it hidden and you'll be fine.

 

 Kingston, Jamaica

3. Kingston, Jamaica

Another Caribbean island makes an appearance, although this one perhaps not so surprisingly. Famous for Bob Marley and a chilled out vibe among other things, Jamaica offers fantastically beautiful scenery and a break from it all inside the luxury beach resorts. Outside of them however it's a different story; the drugs trade is rampant despite police and military efforts (sometimes violent) to curb it and robbery and assault targeting tourists is commonplace. Whilst some cities like Spanish Town and Montego are slightly safer than Kingston, Jamaica is a place one should exercise the highest level of caution

 

Cape Town

 

2. Cape Town, South Africa

Perhaps another unsurprising entry however Cape Town and Africa in general should certainly not be written off. For some experienced travelers Africa is the only true land of self discovery and the final destination for all those who want to understand the planet. That said, it's not a place for the meek or unprepared. Cape Town is a wonderful example of Africa. It's difficult history and recent political developments have lead to a level of instability that makes the city a dangerous place for locals and tourists. Anyone considering a trip to Cape Town or Africa in general (and you should be) needs to check out Backpacking Africa for Beginners its full of tips and videos from a solo female traveler and the best advice on traveling Africa. This fantastic blog article also outlines how to stay safe in Africa from someone who lives it everyday.

 

Acapulco 

1. Acapulco, Mexico

Mexico was sure to make the list at some stage right? Although these days it's hard to judge whether Acapulco or many Mexican cities for that matter can still be considered tourist destinations. Beautiful beaches, a perfect climate and cuisine that's hard to beat doesn't outweigh being named the 3rd most violent city in the world. It used to be one of Mexico's most prosperous cities and is still one of the countries most popular tourist hubs but the high levels of crime mean that tourists and locals are under constant threat of danger. The narcotics industry naturally plays a huge role in the city's crime but the tourist population also plays a big role in the narcotics trade. People do still travel to Acapulco and enjoy themselves, leaving with positive memories - so not all is bad! Take care of yourself, don't make yourself and obvious target and you're likely to get on fine.

 

 

So that concludes our run down of the 10 most dangerous tourist destinations in the world. I'm sure some would come as a surprise and others not so much and while the theme of most of our newsletters is travel safety, we certainly don't want to deter anyone from the trip of a lifetime. The above destinations may be considered more dangerous for tourists than say London, Florida or Sydney but some may say they're also more adventurous. Everywhere has its ugly side and you're only likely to meet it if you're behaving ugly. Practice travel safety and you will remain safe forever more.

Check out our 7 Africa Safety Travel Tips that work for the rest of the world too!

If you have or if you're interested in Clever Travel Companion Gear you should check out our latest Hacker's Guide! It's got some great new uses for the gear.

 

 


7 Africa Travel Safety Tips (That work for the rest of the world too!) April 25 2016, 0 Comments

7 Backpacking Africa Safety Tips (That work for the rest of the world too!)

A few years ago I spent 7 months backpacking Africa, by myself, using only public transportation. Out of all the places I've traveled in the world, Africa has become my favorite. It's not too dangerous or unsafe either. By following the backpacking tips below, I navigated the entire continent as a solo girl without any problems.

 

Backpacking Africa

 

  1. Keep Your Money/Valuables Hidden on You. I was never robbed, thankfully, but even if I was, the thief wouldn't have gotten much since my valuables were all hidden inside my Clever Travel Companion blank tank top (You can read more about how this kept me safe + tips on which size to buy, etc on my backpacking Africa travel blog). I met a backpacker in Tanzania, however, whose taxi driver drove him out of town, stole his wallet, then left him on the side of the road. Luckily, the driver was nice enough to reach back into my friend's wallet and give him enough change for a bus ride back to town (a very thoughtful thief!). But if this would have happened to me, the driver would have only gotten about $20 because the rest of my money, credit cards, and passport were concealed in my tank top.

 

  1. Watch Out for Thieves at Hostels. Unfortunately, some of the worst thieves are other backpackers or the cleaners at your backpacker lodge. To prevent this from happening to you, I recommend packing a lock and using it to secure the lockers that most hostels provide in the rooms. During my trip when this wasn't an option, I put all my important essentials in my Clever Travel tank, and folded it up nicely with the rest of my clothes. If someone did go through my stuff, they wouldn't steal a plain old item like that, and they also wouldn't suspect it was hiding my passport and money.

 

  1. Don't lose your Sh*T! I think it's normal to want to go a little crazy on vacation, especially the first few days or weeks. But that's when the most trouble happens. For me it meant I spent exorbitant amounts of money in the beginning when I was in South Africa and then had to do some serious damage control on my budget for the rest of the trip. I saw a lot of good people though doing drugs, breaking country laws knowingly, or hanging out at shady bars in shady areas which are all things they admitted to never doing at home.Then they got mad when they were arrested for smoking weed or held up after drinking in a ghetto. Granted, as a traveler you're not going to know all the laws and most places in Africa do look a little questionable, but my advice is to keep yourself together and make sure you're making smart choices even in the beginning.

 

  1. Ask Locals for Advice. The best way I stayed safe while backpacking Africa was by asking locals safety advice then following it. For example, an American expat in Rwanda told me I could walk down a dark alley in Kigali at 2am with all my valuables out in the open, and nothing bad would happen. And although I didn't quite test it out, I did feel very safe. But in Nairobi, a local told me that as soon as it gets dark, I needed to quit walking and take a taxi even if I was only going a few blocks away. So that's what I did, and what I credit to a fun (and safe) experience in the town whose bad reputation earned it the name “Nairobbery.”

 

Kids in Ethiopia

 

  1. Use Common Sense. Looking back, most my travel mistakes happened because I just didn't use common sense. The same was true for other travelers. Like when my backpacking friend, Oron, got malaria because he forgot to take his anti-malaria medicine for three weeks. Or when I recently heard of a traveler getting gored by a rhino because he got too close to it during a photo-op. Usually the unfortunate happens in travel because we just quit thinking.

 

  1. Leave the Situation-Fast! No matter, how careful you are, you can still easily wind up in a bad situation accidentally. My advice-run! That's what I did when I ended up in a really sketchy hostel in Durban, South Africa that looked more like a crack den. I found some Canadian backpackers who felt the same as me, and we shared a taxi and got out of there quick! I met some British girls who told me in Malawi that they went out clubbing with a local guy, but started to feel uncomfortable with how he was acting and where he was taking them. They nicely came up with an excuse and left. Even if everything seems fine, but you just have a bad feeling, I'd listen to it because it's literally better to be safe than sorry.

 

  1. Don't Tempt a Thief. While no situation justifies robbing or harming someone, there's no reason to make it easy. I always cringed when I saw someone walking around with a money belt. In my opinion, that just screams, “Rob me!” Their cash could be just as easily reached, however, in the pocket of a Clever Travel Companion pair of underwear, only with the added advantage of being secure. Same thing goes for a Chinese backpacker I met who was walking around Mozambique with her computer in a laptop case. I felt really bad when someone stole it from her when she was walking back from an internet cafe, but at the same time, locals never looked twice at me when I was carrying my computer because I was storing it in my dusty backpack.

 

I hope you see that backpacking Africa can be easily (and safely) traveled. Because even though I had visited over 20 countries before my trip—including European, Asian, and Latino, I found African countries to be the best for so many reasons!

Check out my blog Backpacking Africa for Beginners www.backpackingafricaforbeginners.com for more ideas on which countries to visit and how to do it, plus get a free 15% off coupon to Clever Travel Companion by downloading the complete edition of my free African travel E-book and check out this blog to see what other neat stuff Clever Travel gear can do!

 

About the Author: Val Bowden backpacked from Cape Town to Cairo, going through 13 African countries, all by herself. After her trip, she moved back to the continent and has been living in Addis Ababa ever since. You can download her E-book, Backpacking Africa for Beginners http://backpackingafricaforbeginners.com/book/or her guides on Ethiopia, Kilimanjaro, & scoring cheap flights for free (although any contribution goes towards a social impact business she's starting in Ethiopia).

 

Camping in Africa