Common sense Acommon Travel rules as to where ever you go:
#1. Don't go where you shouldn't go.
#2. Follow the rule of law in the country that you reside.
#3. Adhere to the rule of law from your home country.
#4. Respect and "pre-" read up on the culture(s).
#5. Gain some familiarity with the country's national language prior to your trip.
#6. Practice the local language with the locals.
#7. If concerned with lodging then don't do what isn't familiar to you.
#8. Eat what has been cooked.
#9. Drink bottled water that has a seal. Open it yourself.
#10. Know your coordinates (esp. North & South). Memorize the major cross-roads prior to taking your trip.
#11. Have a copy or two of your Passport in a safe place (either on you personally or in an emergency place).
#12. Go electronic (with back up paperwork) when you can.
#13. Be reluctant to share your full plans with strangers.
#14. Be flexible.
#15. How you handle "it" determines whether it'll be a good event or day or not. Understand that something weird, funny, or bad might occur.
#16. Watch your travel companions as they might just as well cause trouble by accident / unknowingly or on purpose.
#17. International travel is not a time for pranks. (Stay away from pranksters that want to travel with you)
#18. Just try to remember that "nothing" is for "free". (This goes for women too)
#17. Silently mediate as to rehearse (or re-play) plans.
#18. Always be prepared for a back-up exit plan (... where ever you are (and check for exits)).
#19. Travel with flex travel time on the front end but esp. back end of your visit. This'll reduce your frustrations if there happen to be delays.
#20. Pack light while being wise.
#21. Be nimble.
#22. If you have good judgment with befriending people (anywhere) then be social with out giving away too much information.
#23. Know your money. Where it is. How much is on you. Denominations in order. Minimize coins if possible (don't need to be heard walking around jiggling).
#24. When driving ... pay the extra for full coverage. (Take it from a guy that has had 2 separate flat tires and locked up engine all in the same trip. Can you guess where?)
#25. Walk like you know where you are going even when you get lost. The best way to not get lost again is to remember where you were when you were lost.
#26. You are not a "stick" in the mud if you choose to stay away from the "loud" crowd.
#27. Avoid traveling during the host country's elections.
#28. Be aware of political and labor union protest. Don't accidently get caught up.
#29. Never walk away from your open beverages and/or food. Once you've stepped away then pass on further consumption as to be cautious.
#30. Ladies and guys, know that you will meet lots of wonderful people plus some not so. Don't be fooled by "beauty" or a "handsome" face. Danger lurks. If you have a bad judgment of character domestically then it is not going to get any better outside of the country.
#31. If you're not considered "HOT" back home then don't be fooled when you are abroad. Money matters. It isn't really your looks.
#32. The money train gets you access but it can also generate trouble.
#33. Make certain Taxis / Limos drivers happen to be locked into the price and directions prior to departure.
#34. Know the weather conditions prior and during your trip.
#35. Read the local newspapers / journals prior to arrival. (seek to understand cultural, social, economic, etc topics of the day)
If you plan on driving around the city of St. Louis, well, good luck with that. Try to bring someone along with you who can watch a map and/or help with street signs. I had a horrible time on my own trying to find things in the city (like Scott Joplin's home) and finally gave up on seeing a lot I had planned to see and just went to the first main street I could find and followed it to the river.
On the interstate or on surface streets, it really doesn't matter. I've known people who have literally spent HOURS being lost in St. Louis. If you're driving at night, especially, make sure you know exactly where you're going. There are some tough neighborhoods and you don't want to end up in the wrong place after dark.
i know, missouri is considered a southern state. well, st. louis is very midwestern, until you travel about 5 minutes south...then it's miraculously southern. there is food that belongs in this part of the country, and food that doesn't exist here...not in the way that it should. if you are from missouri and you have never been outside of missouri, you don't know what real mexican food tastes like. there's also a shortage of real chinese food...since we're talking asian, you can forget about having sushi. people say it's flown in fresh, but i would rather eat sushi that was actually caught in the ocean next to the restaurant, and you won't find any of that in st. louis.
In recent surveys, Missouri ranked in the top 20% of the United States when it came to highway maintainance and improvements.
However, there are naturally dangerous roads around the forests of the Ozarks & Old Highway 21 is one of the deadliest roads in the United States, although the road is currently being re-routed and made into a 4 lane highway.
Don't let this scare you off. Missouri has a lot of wonderful vacation spots.
But - The bridges and highways are among the worst in the nation. I hate to say it, but it's true. Just allow extra time, because you may have to slow down because of road conditions, or occasionally repairs. And you will not always get a smooth ride, even on major thoroughfares like Interstate 70.
Highways always seem to be under construction, even in winter, so drive carefully. As a rule, St. Louisans don't really know how to drive in snowy weather, again, drive carefully. Ice storms only compound this problem (not a problem in August!!)
It really is not a good idea to swim or even wade in the Mississippi River, you might lose some skin.
Every year we hear of people drowning in flash floods. As I mentioned before, there are a lot of caves in Mo. Many which fill fast in the heavy downpours we frequently have. If a flash flood advisory is out, heed it!
I have no idea how this motorist managed to crash thier car on a wide straight highway. But they did!
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