The Clever Travel Companion Updates

Pickpockets force the Eiffel tower to close May 27 2015, 0 Comments

The Eiffel tower closed Friday, as staffers walked off the job to protest the increase in pickpocket incidents in the area. The Louvre closed in 2013 due to a similar pickpocket related protest. Is pickpocket incidence that bad? And where are you most vulnerable?

There are around 400,00 incidents of pickpocketing reported every day across the world. Popular tourist spots like Barcelona, New York and Paris are magnets for pickpockets. 33% of all travel insurance claims are for lost or stolen passports.

Prime targets are tourist attractions, train stations, and busy streets. 

The Clever Travel Companion reduces the fear of pickpocketing for travellers.  Our clothing line of  t-shirts, tanks and underwear feature hidden, zippered pockets. To the casual observer, it’s impossible to tell where you're hiding your valuables. Allowing you to travel with a higher sense of safety and peace of mind.

Money can be replaced, so can credit cards and passports. But, having to spend time on vacation doing just that is not fun. It’s time-consuming, it’s expensive, and it’s a drag. So rather safe than sorry; zip up your valuables and enjoy your travels!

The Clever Travel Companion Guide to Avoiding Pickpockets

  • Don't carry things in your back pocket.
  • Don't keep your purse hanging on your back.
  • Don’t hang your jacket or bag on the back of a chair.
  • Don’t let strangers 'help' you unasked. Whenever strangers approach you  be aware. Diversion is the best way for a pickpocket to  work their magic. They often work in pairs or groups, so be wary. Just walk away.
  • Don't keep all your valuables in one place. If there is a safe in your hotel room, use it. Always keep one credit card in a safe place so if you do get pick pocketed you will have a backup.
  • Keep your valuables in a safe and in the secret, zipped pockets of your Clever Travel Companion travel clothing. Keep some cash and one credit card in a regular pocket or wallet for everyday purchases. We don’t want you exposing your secret stash every time you pay for a bus ticket or ice cream or the likes.
  • Use your secret pockets when doing sports or going on an adventure. Rather than placing your valuables to the side when bungy jumping or rafting, zip them in and they're safe. When jogging or off to the gym, keep your hotel key zipped in a secret pocket. 

    The lazy girl's guide to pickpocket proof clothing May 20 2015, 0 Comments

    So, here’s the thing. Whenever I go to a small island, I get on “island time” pretty much straight away.

    I know to begin the process of acquiring food well before I’m hungry so I don’t kill someone while waiting for food (I can get REAL HANGRY). Bathing suits replace underwear, sarongs replace clothes. I think to myself, "going in the ocean is the same as a shower, right?" You get the idea.

    If you ever visit the island of Caye Caulker in Belize, the locals actually tell you to “Go Slow” when you walk past them- after I’d been there a week some guy shouted out to me, “Yeah, you got it! Go slow.” Seriously.

    Last week, while visiting Nusa Lembongan, which is a small island off the coast of Bali, I fell right back into my island habits. Honestly, I don’t even know why I bother bringing a bag on these trips because I end up wearing pretty much the same thing every day.

      

    In this case, I had brought the new Clever Travel Companion women’s fitted tee, and the men’s crew neck for my friend who was meeting me there. And seriously, we wore them every day!  Not because we were particularly concerned about pickpockets, but because we were feeling lazy. I didn’t want to bring a bag everywhere, my friend didn’t want to have to change out of his swimming shorts- well aren’t these shirt pockets convenient! 

    (I shaved my head a few months ago for charity, and now it's at this awkward length where it sticks straight out because my hair is so thick. My friend, on the other hand, looks great, as usual. Maybe I'm just a better photographer than he is. Yeah, let's go with that.)

    I said something to my friend about how I love that I can just wrap a piece of cloth around my waist, and call it clothes here. He was like, "Who are you kidding? You would absolutely do that in Boston". Dammit, he knows me too well.


    5 Things I Have Learned From Travel May 14 2015, 0 Comments

    We've all heard the quotes that get tossed around about travel, especially in the age of Pinterest. Not all those who wander are lost! (thanks Tolkien). It seems like every day I see a beautiful quote paired with a great stock photo, like these.

    What I find interesting, is that mostly they're created and shared by people who are traveling, or have been travelers- the quotes are aspirational in the sense that the people sharing them aspire to continue on this path. To be nomads when everything tells us to settle down. To oscillate between people who think we're incredibly irresponsible and people who tell us how lucky we are. 

    I too have learned a lot through travel. I am more myself in a completely foreign situation than I am in a comfortable routine. Too much stability makes me lose touch with the nomad that I am. When I travel I put aside my need for control, familiarity, and complaining and I just be (the Purpose Fairy sums this up far better than I).

    So, with that very long introduction, here are 5 important things I have learned from traveling.

    1. Language is a very small part of communication

    This is so easy to forget when we are constantly texting, emailing, blogging. But when it comes down to it, nothing compares to interacting with someone face to face. And if you don't speak the same language, if you both really want to communicate, language is not necessarily a barrier.

    2. The best way to get to know someone is by sharing a meal or a drink

    Why is that? I've been trying to figure this out for years. But without fail, sharing a meal/ drink brings a relationship with a stranger to friend status. If the meal is home cooked, even better! When I couchsurfed (both as a surfer and as a host), this was always my first priority, and the best way to make a new friend.

    3. Money is not the end all and be all

    What I mean is, don't let money dictate your life. All your decisions should not be based on money. If a once in a life time experience is not in your planned budget, DO IT ANYWAY! Ultimately, in 5 years time, will you be glad you saved a few thousand dollars, or wish you had taken the opportunity?

    And the flip side of this is, don't continue doing something you hate for money. If the whole purpose is to make you happy, how is that working out for you? I was at my most happy making minimum wage and living in a 16 share dorm room, surrounded by amazing friends doing the exact same thing. Do what you need to do to make your life rich.

    4. Good clothes are totally worth the investment

    And shoes, and coats, and underwear. Seriously, learn from my mistakes! I had wet feet for 2 weeks when I moved to Scotland because I didn't have proper shoes. When I finally did, it was the best feeling ever! Which brings me to my 5th lesson...

    5. Only bring a carry-on 

    I HATE checking a bag. It takes longer to check in... It takes longer to get out of the airport... Big bags are a pain to maneuver...

    This is my way of saying, only bring what you NEED. Functional basics are the only things I pack- if it doesn't serve multiple purposes, it doesn't make the cut. Yes, in theory, high heels would be nice to have for a night out, but in reality, they make my feet hurt, I would maybe wear them once, and they take up a lot of space.

    Bonus Lesson: 

    Take all the distractions away, and the simple pleasures become the best things in the world. 

    What have you learned from your travels?