Summer is here and travel season is kicking into full gear. I just returned from Maui, and I’m about to jump in the van for Wheelbase’s “Keep On Tuckin’” tour! I’ll definitely be hitting the Maryhill “She-Ride” as well—and I’m still figuring out the details— but I’m headed to the Middle East and Europe for a few weeks in August and September. In the midst of all these adventures, I’m always trying to find ways to travel smarter, to be a better guest, and to get the most out of my shred trips. I’ve found the following practices to help me keep it light and positive while on the road:
–Minimize clothing. Wash your clothes on the trip! I was recently knocked for being a minimalist—called out (by a dude, mind you) for wearing the same skirt too often. Well, it happens to be a quite useful article of clothing for changing into leathers, wetsuits, etc—and if you keep it washed you can save space by bringing less of ’em. Haters gonna hate, but I’m gonna be psyched I have minimal luggage to lug around.
–Bring a travel-sized towel. These towels fold up super small, especially compared to normal sized towels. Most skate houses don’t have a clean towel for you or the other ten people they’re hosting to use, so bring your own.
–Sleep in a hammock. This is not for everyone of course, but I found it to be clutch in Maui, Hawaii. Instead of bringing a puffy sleeping bag my Driftwood “Localent Coccon” hammock (a rad gift from Adam Colton) folds into itself very compactly. It has soft mesh netting that you zip yourself underneath. It’s breathable but keeps the bugs out. I don’t normally sleep on my back, but I slept incredibly well on this thing. No pillow necessary, and it’s way more comfortable than sleeping on the floor or couch. I woke up feeling well-rested and energized—super key for traveling in warm, dry places. It’s an option definitely worth looking into.
–Bring only what you need. Simplify. Keep it simple.
–Clean up after yourself. It’s never a good idea to leave your dishes for someone else to do. Make sure to keep your luggage all together for the most part—make yourself a little zone and keep it tidy. Otherwise, things start getting cluttered. Belongings get lost and/or moldy, and that’s just not cool. Like I said, you’re staying in someone’s home—don’t trash it.
–Remember that donations are always much appreciated. Something as minor as toilet paper or paper towels goes a long way, especially at a skater’s house! If you are planning to stay for longer than a few weeks then rent contributions will be appreciated at that point. Let’s be real, rent is usually high where the skating is nice and utilities go up with every guest. If you’re old enough to travel around to skate, you’re old enough to pay rent at a place you’re staying for an extended period of time. Pitch in.
–Have a plan and be proactive. I see too many sad souls melting into the couch on skate trips because they didn’t make a solid plan. If you don’t have a car you’ll probably need to rent one at some point, maybe use public transportation, and definitely utilize Google Maps. Don’t let that crusty couch and Skate 3 swallow you whole!
Video: “Island Time” With Amanda Powell:
The above is a culmination of my experiences hosting guests, being a guest, and also watching my friends host and be guests. I think that with a little bit of effort you can always have an excellent trip and leave your hosts stoked. My personal tools for traveling well are packing wisely, being a respectful guest, as well as trying to be an overall conscious and good human being. Not everyone wants to travel as minimalistic as I do, and that’s cool. Regardless, it’s rad to be nice and respectful and it has benefited me enormously. You will be stoked in all your adventures if you manifest positivity and think ahead, I promise. Enjoy!