Internet tools before travelling

The Internet is an excellent tool for gathering important information before you leave your country. I have listed what I found useful while researching backpacking and future destinations. At the end of each section, I have placed an Internet link to either an online directory, Internet keyword search, or a direct link to a web page. The Internet directory is the best way to go, it is like an online yellow pages and provides an up-to-date list of all known websites on that subject. The Internet search keywords are suggestions on what you can type into a search engine like:,, etc.

If I couldn’t find what I needed to know with an Internet directory or keyword search, I provide the address of the website.

Guidebooks: Most guidebooks publishers have their own website. Information in your book is always changing and any updates will be on the site. Also, they are a great reference for Internet tools before travelling some initial research on what is offered in the country, andother useful facts. Many of them publish a newsletter that is sent weekly, monthly or annually. Some of the better ones offer free news groups where anyone can ask a question and it is answered by fellow backpackers.

Internet Search Directories: Travel/Backpacking/ Travel/Budget/

DFAIT: DFAIT is the Department for Foreign Affairs and International Trade. This is the government’s lifeline to all travellers. It has a wealth of information on what is currently happening in a particular country as it relates to your nationality. I check any travel advisories (which tend to be a bit overly conservative for my taste, but they are just covering all the bases), visa requirements, maximum length of stay permitted, etc. If you are going to be staying long in a particular country, you can register yourself with your country’s consulate and have them keep tabs on you.

Internet Search Keywords:

dfait + {the name of your country}

Website address:

E-mail: There are many free e-mail websites on the Internet and all can be accessed from any Internet terminal around the world. E-mail allows you to stay in touch with your old friends and family and also your new friends that you are going to be making while travelling. Some packers create a special e-mail address just for travelling and give it out freely to whomever wants it. They have a primary one that they keep to themselves.

When you meet other backpackers, the preferred method to stay in touch is to exchange e-mail addresses. In the back of my journal I have a list of e-mails that I collected. I found it useful to make sure I have their full name and a small description of them. After a while, you get a name: Xe’ Chi – and have no idea who the person is.

Some people like to protect their privacy when travelling. They would get a temporary account such as: This way, after you get home and given your e-mail address to a thousand or so strangers, you can pick who you want to give your real e-mail address to.

Internet Search Directories: Free/Web-Based/ siness/Communications_and_Networking/Internet_and_World _Wide_Web/E-mail_Providers/Free_E-mail/

Blogging: A blog is basically a web log or an online diary that anyone with an Internet connection can create and update. Anyone, or only people whom you specify can read what you are writing and post their comments to each of your entries. There are many free services on the Internet that offer these services. This is the best way to stay in touch, since your friends would come and read what you are writing whenever they want to without you filling up people’s e-mail box with your periodic ramblings.

Internet Search Directories: Web/Weblogs/Tools/Publishers/ Wide_Web/Weblogs/Software/ ps/Cyberculture/Virtual_Communities/