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Travel Tips from the Amazing Race

Although The Amazing Race is, essentially, a game show, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t quite a bit to be learned from the show. Those contestants do need to figure out how they’re going to get from point A to point B safely and efficiently, it’s not something that just any bozo can do. We’ve gathered some of the best tips from The Amazing Race that you can put to use in your own travels:

From Phil Keoghan Himself

Let’s start with some tips from host Phil Keoghan himself. In an interview with AARP Magazine, Keoghan shared some of his own travel tips:

  • Travel light. You’re not moving, you’re traveling. You can leave most of your stuff at home. Keoghan suggests that you never bring any luggage you’ll need to check. If you carry with a single carry-on, then it becomes much easier to hop from flight to flight.

  • What to bring: Earplugs and an eye mask in case you get a chance to catch some shuteye, a notebook to record your thoughts or just do some doodling, sunscreen, a good book, and a positive attitude.

  • Get through security quick by emptying your pockets and taking your belt off in line.

Tips from Contestants

What do the contestants have to say about what brought them across the finish line?

  • Josh and Brent, Season 21: Travel with someone you like. Good communication is the most important factor in a successful adventure.

  • Ernie and Cindy, Season 19: Train and prepare. It’s hard to walk across airports all day if you’re a pack-a-day smoker who keeps running out of breath, so stay healthy.

  • Brennan, Season 1: Take time to enjoy yourself. If your trip is just one frantic dash from one location to the next, then why travel in the first place?

Watch What You Eat

Loyal viewers remember when Lori and Bolo took advantage of their race’s first fast forward, drinking a goblet of pig’s blood. The producers of The Amazing Race love their food challenges, and in the same season, we saw the teams eat bowls of soup so spicy that their noses were running for hours afterwards. If you’re not going to win a game show by doing something like this, then you should not be doing something like this. Part of the fun of travel is tasting exotic foods, but you generally don’t want to risk it unless you know where you’re going to sleep it off tonight if you catch food poisoning or eat something that disagrees with you.

Avoid Unnecessary Risks

Taking an unnecessary risk on the road can really take the wind out of your sails, sometimes literally. The Amazing Race has shown us a lot of teams who were taken down by an unfortunate injury. In Season 14 there was an excruciating moment wherein contestant Mel White pulled a groin muscle while competing in Cheese Hill, running up and down a steep incline with weight on their backs. In Season 20, we remember Vanessa suffering a nasty ankle sprain in a footrace in India, and of course, one of the biggest viral video moments in the show’s history, when Claire, in Season 17, took a slingshot watermelon to the face at point blank range. These physical competitions are part of the show, but they’re not part of your itinerary. Avoid physical extraneous activity, and pace yourself. Don’t run for a taxi, there’s another one on the way.

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