This text was written by Rustam Muksinov, an information security specialist.
How to go to XXX and not be left without pants? Instructions for a hitchhiker or how to live in a metropolis for less than XXX rubles a day
Quite often I have to go on business trips. Including to come to Nerezinovsk (Moscowabad, Sobyaninsk, underline the necessary). Due to the fact that I am far from being the son of an oligarch and I, unfortunately, do not have a personal oil refinery, but I have a wife and two children, I try to optimize my expenses as much as possible. The funniest thing is that my model of behavior justifies itself on a trip to any city in the world. You may have all known this before, but maybe someone will benefit from my experience.
There are several concepts that have been instilled in me from early childhood, as my education and environment. This is Planning and Preparedness.
Planning is the main component of my preparation for any trip.
I repeat: any my trip begins with planning. This is an axiom that works whether I want it or not. First we think, then we do. This saves a lot of mental strength, allows you to quickly respond to emergency situations, and saves money. Planning a trip, in my understanding of this process, consists of answers to several big questions: Where can I live (if the trip takes more than a day)? What do i have? Where do I need to go and how to get to these places? Questions like “How?”, “Why?”, “What happens if? ...” are not considered by me here. For this there is the concept of "universal indifference" which I will consider at the end of this opus. Let's get started.
1. Where do I live?
I will not consider the situation when the receiving side provides housing and meals. Everything is clear there. I have to go on trips, some of which are paid to me, and at my own expense. You can and should save in both cases.
First of all, you need to determine the level of personal necessities. There are trips in which I need a full-fledged two-room hotel room or apartment, and sometimes it’s just a bed in a hostel. And, as usual, the most important question for me: as if with all the amenities, but for minimal money? I do not exclude that it is possible: cheaper / more expensive / better / this is not my level / A white swan on a pond! ... I proceed from the necessities in each specific situation. I’ll add, “I’m not allowed in the Billiards! I am married! ”, So I do not consider living with girls of easy virtue. I go on business trips for another! Suddenly the wife is reading?
In the age of high technology, almost all prices in more or less large cities can be studied without spending money on calling. His Majesty the Internet offers many opportunities to save. There are several services that help me resolve both issues.
Sites of which there are many: http://www.booking.com, https://www.airbnb.ru, https://www.kayak.com, http://ostrovok.ru, http://oktogo.ru , http://tophotels.ru, and their mobile versions for smartphones. A registered user on all such services can count on some preferences in their favor, discounts, etc. Services have several features, one of which is special offers for people leaving useful reviews. In addition, there are special offers, “secret prices” with discounts and tips on what dates it is better to plan a stay. For example, you can spend the night in a hostel located a 10-minute walk from the Kremlin for 800 rubles for three nights or at Patriarch Ponds for 680. You can also get a discount by checking in with a company of several people. It is very advantageous to rent a double room if you find a partner. Or claim to agree to share.
There is a caveat: I love and can bargain. Blood is not water, Tatar if that! Hoteliers, especially in small hotels and hostels often go to the meeting, providing places a little better or cheaper when performing certain actions. This, for example, is a reservation a week before the planned arrival with payment by credit card or in cash. To find out this is not difficult, just by calling the hotel directly bypassing the site. Compiling an adequate review with photos is also one of them. Upon arrival at the hotel, having booked a cheaper room, it is possible, for the same price, to settle in a room with a class higher if your reservation is made for a period of more than 7 days and allows seasonal loading of the hotel. All these options are not standard and depends only on your sociability. Naturally, if you plan to come every day very noisy, cheerful, with the smell of sauerkraut, a tie over your shoulder and two beauties, after midnight, then there can be no talk of any relaxation. Although ... It all depends on your sociability!
When choosing a hotel, pay attention to the provision of storage services or safe deposit boxes. This will allow you not to worry about the safety of things and carry out planned tasks without carrying heavy trunks. In some hostels, this service is paid.
An important factor when choosing is to clarify the following points: Wi-Fi with a normal channel (you can find out only by interviewing by phone and reading the reviews of visitors), the presence of a washing machine and iron, and the organization of the kitchen. It will not be superfluous to ask about hotel loading during your planned arrival. In addition, look at the calendar - will there be holidays or student vacations at this time?
Orienteering in a big city and orienteering on the ground are essentially not exactly the same things. Without looking at my past, I usually act as the hero of the joke: “Dad, look, the military men have left the forest with a map! Scha, stopudovo, they will ask for directions! ” This is about me. And I confuse right-left and I don’t remember the streets ... I can easily go astray in my native city on foot, since I know it mainly by car. And when they ask me: “How to get from point A to point B by public transport” - I shrug my shoulders in surprise. In this regard, the salvation for me is the presence of GPS / A-GPS in the phone. Along with this, in the old fashioned way, before leaving or on the road I do crocuses - a written display of the route with control points and visible landmarks. In this regard, the 2GIS program that is on all gadgets except the electronic cigarette helps me a lot. I think over the route and describe it in a notebook. As a result, then, anyway, I ask passers-by whether I am going right.
On-line and off-line versions of the 2Gis program.
I put this program on everything that is possible. In advance, at the planning stage, I download the necessary city. In a situation of choosing a place of residence, this allows me to quickly determine the optimal area for me. Arriving in a large city in which civilization has reached the level that they have built an extensive metro network, do not bother with the proximity to the venue of the main meetings. It is much easier to find a place that is optimal in terms of metro lines. Ideally, if I find housing on the same branch where my main meetings will be held. Also, this program provides an optimal route for public transport. Very pleased with the monthly updates and the availability of relevant phones and direct links to the official pages of hotels and hostels.
It will not be superfluous to search the Internet for ways to pay for travel. You can and should save on this too. Having calculated the optimal way to get from a permanent deployment point to the places planned for the trip, you can easily calculate the time and cost. In major cities, I make discounts on traffic jams, in case of possible use of land transport. In addition, knowing the number of trips, you can purchase a travel card on the first day. The more trips, the lower, usually, their price.
My personal list of programs for travel mobile phone and laptop:
- 2GIS (I pre-download the city I’m going to, it is everywhere I can)
- Yandex Metro (quickly shows the time and route, taking into account the transitions, is on the smartphone)
- Yandex-cards (on a smartphone with saving cards to cache on a USB flash drive)
- Google-maps (both on the laptop and on the smartphone)
- Navitel-navigator (maps of all of Russia, on smart)
- Soviet military maps (personal troubles, stands on smart, allows you to load scans of old topographic maps)
- GPS tracker (a sophisticated programmulina for smart with hemorrhoids registration that allows you to record a route with a display, if you have mobile Internet, the path traveled to the site, they say there is such an opportunity in your Google account)
- Panic button (the program is tied to determining Google location by 5 parameters, sends SMS with pre-typed text and location coordinates to five phone numbers, stands on smart, amuses my paranoia)
3. What and where do I eat?
Food for me is an important moment. Preparation allows me in extreme situations to eat absolutely inedible products from the point of view of an ordinary person. Along with this, being able and loving to do it are two different things. I like to eat tasty and a lot. The searches of chefs the size of a gulkin nose, beautifully decorated with all kinds of garbage, do not impress me. As, however, and the dubious charms of fast food. For lunch, you need to eat hot broth (soup, piti, khash - underline what is necessary) or lagman and its analogues! I have no doubt about that. In the evening, I am obliged to eat, too, not a cracker from the IRP, but something hot. And it definitely will not be egg noodles with soy. If the hostel has a normal refrigerator and microwave, and, often, a full multicooker, the food problem is solved by me simply: a normal purchase in Auchan or a similar store. In the future, this saves me a lot of effort and money.
The choice of food systems is everyone's personal choice. In my case, there are some subtleties and nuances. In nature, there are fully cooked, frozen, dinners that you can simply warm up in the microwave. Their cost, in large stores, is very low. Taking different types from the calculation of consumption once every two days, I provide myself with a variety of dinners.
Taking in advance a large piece of meat or sausage, cheese and other ingredients, I can build myself (including in advance) sandwiches baked with the same notorious microwave that delight my stomach at a time convenient for me. Including replacing full dinners.
The host does not always care about the person. In this case, a little trick helps me. In walking or near accessibility, I preliminarily examine the area for the presence of markets, or large state (accessible to ordinary citizens) institutions. As a rule, there are catering points “for their own people” next to them. For example, earlier, a cheap “shovel” canteen existed at one of the Moscow metro stations almost in the center of the capital. Fed tasty. Often, behind a rather shabby-looking establishment on the market (a remarkable intelligence sign, it means local traders go there who vote not only for the ruble for quality), extremely tasty canteens with huge portions and affordable prices are hidden. Exceptions are all kinds of stations. I don’t risk eating there. For visitors, travelers and other station visitors, only the lazy do not profit.
Regardless of any factors, I always have a small but energetically capacious snack in my backpack. His set is purely individual. But! It allows you to quickly satisfy hunger in situations where rumbling in the stomach begins to interfere with work, and there is no possibility to take a lunch break.
Willingness is probably one of the main tenets that help me maintain peace of mind in any situation. This is a very broad concept, including for me personally many components. Willingness is, first and foremost, experience gained over the years. According to my teacher: “Comrade cadets, a person is not ready for the situation to get out of your control - the living dead!” Murphy's Laws are still very instructive for shaping Preparedness. Preparedness is primarily a process. In a particular situation, it is a set of knowledge, skills, as well as a set of necessary things, software and equipment. But! Not enough to have. Each knowledge must be ABLE to put into practice. Below I outline this concept only in the application to a short or medium, temporary stay in a foreign city. In fact, this is a personal, personal “disturbing suitcase of a city dweller” consisting of a set of objects and skills. Please note! This is my experience, my stuff. I do not pretend to teach. I just share the option that I thought out for my needs.
The constituent concepts of “Readiness” from MY point of view:
1. Things and gadgets.
How many copies are broken in the online battles about the composition of “alarm suitcases”! I know people who spend quite a lot of money on it, and compose them in the type of "God bless you, which is not good for us!" I proceed from the principle of "price-quality", in some positions, bending towards quality. As I said above, the financial side of the issue is a very important component of my Wishlist. But the general simple principle. I don’t need a thing for show-offs. It must be reliable. If there is a cheap analogue that is not inferior in terms of the characteristics of a "brand" thing - I better take it. Now, almost all global brands have moved their plants to China. I am absolutely not shy about using their products. There is China and there is China. Until you use it yourself, you won’t understand the difference.
Second moment. "Technique in the hands of a savage - a pile of metal." Everything that MY travel bag is clogged with, I must (I would even say, “Obliged”) be able to use. A thing supposed to be “just in case of a fire” because my mother said so (dad, guru, expert, underline what is necessary), but which I personally have never used is an unnecessary ballast that I will have to carry myself. Why do I need it? Therefore, I approach the selection of things very responsibly, thinking over weight, purpose, use cases. Along with this, objects that lie "to be" are. I think that having torn your pants or a jacket during check-in for a flight, making a seam is much easier than hastily buying a new suit in a foreign city.
I have a fully assembled city backpack for trips from three to five days including the road. The choice of this model was not accidental. He was selected based on so many parameters. It is used as the main alarm case.
If the trip lasts more than five days, instead of it I take a small or medium plastic case on wheels. When choosing a case, it is important (from personal experience) to pay attention to the wheels. They should be silicone and large enough. Ideally, wheels from single-row roller skates. In addition, in addition, I take a small flat laptop backpack with me. In conditions of separation from the car, he helps to carry with him in an unfamiliar city all the shmurdyak I need. It helps a lot to relieve oneself in big cities.
The main suitcase remains at the hotel (in the office, overnight place, luggage room, etc.), you run about your business with a backpack. The only caveat when choosing a city backpack - the fewer external pockets, the better! Ideally - without any external pockets. At least minimal locks will not be superfluous. Several times, while traveling to banana republics and large cities, he himself came across and saw, using the example of others, how to professionally carry all of their contents from these pockets. A familiar pickpocket-pickpocket told me about this: “The back pocket of your jeans is my pocket. Although, if I saw what I liked, your pocket is mine! ”
A set of things that I mainly take on trips, regardless of its duration:
- Power-bank for 6 elements 18650. The choice for many is not obvious, but for me the best. It allows without a power outlet for all devices (including a laptop) that I carry with me for more than a day. In addition, many of the devices that I have are sharpened for 18650 elements.
- Micro usb roulette cord.
- Silicone cord Micro usb 1.2 meters.
- 200W charger for two 1.2 / 2.1 A. devices
- SD adapter - MicroSD
- AA AA batteries 2 pcs.
- Business trip phone. Separate telephone with GPS, radio and additional battery. With a SIM card without a monthly fee and a set of programs that work in off-line mode without using the Internet. I will write a set of programs below.
- Philips fabric-braided headphones with “G” -shaped plug
- Sunglasses in a case with a microfiber cloth
- Small Chinese flashlight with manual charge
- Flashlight Fenix PD35
- Disposable electronic cigarette (I'm smoking)
- Reusable electronic cigarette with charger and slurry
- 2 packs of regular cigarettes
- Pipe tobacco with rolls of paper for rolled cigarettes in metal packaging from lollipops
- Matches are wind-moisture-proof in a blister (in the medicine cabinet there is a duplicate package)
- Cricket lighter
- Paracord (parachute line) 10 meters woven into a bracelet.
- The cord is nylon, with a diameter of about 2 mm - 2 meters.
- Titanium fork spoon
- Multitool Leatherman ST300 (you can’t carry on luggage in an airplane)
- Folding scissors (really want Leatherman CS scissors)
- A folding knife (I have a lot of different ones, I take them based on my mood and ways of getting there).
- ear plugs
- Sponge for shoes small
- Notebook on rings
- Metal ballpoint pen
- Spare paste for ballpoint pen
- Automatic pencil
- Permanent construction marker
- Small Roulette Keychain
- USB 3.0 flash drive 64 Gb
- USB 2.0 Mini 1 Gb flash drive (with copies of documents)
- USB 3.0 WD My Passport Ultra 1 Tb Hard Drive with Drawstring
- Notebook ASUS B400VC with charger and adapter to Power bank
- Voice recorder Olimpus
- Roll of garbage bags made of thick polyethylene
- Durable medical shoe covers 2 pcs.
- Hygiene kit (brush, paste sampler, soap, cologne sampler, alcohol wipes, shower gel and shampoo samplers, floss stick, razor, aftershave gel in hotel microbottles, comb)
- Food set (chocolate bar, hematogen, vacuum-smoked cured, small packs of salt, pepper, sugar, 2 bouillon cubes, dry energy drink, micro-lollipops, pack of chewing gum, spice mix: laurel, red pepper, zira, basil, etc.) .p. secret ingredients in a zip-lock bag, tea, coffee bags)
- MOLLE pouch for bottle
- A thermos mug or a small mini-saloon bottle with a bottle cap for baby water.
- Dry fuel tablet per pack of 4
- Tea light
- Cotton balls soaked in petroleum jelly and 2 plexiglass strips in a ball from a kinder surprise (the idea was brazenly stolen from a specialist respected by me)
- A4 plastic folder
- A4 zip-lock package
- Zip-lock package for documents (all originals, except the passport, are in this package)
- Copies of the required and necessary documents (passport, TIN, SNILS, medical insurance, etc.)
- Plastic VISA debit card
- Small microfiber towel
- Repair kit (medical disposable blades, set of buttons, five-color threads, needles, gypsy needle, thimble, thin steel wire about 1 m, 2 long and 2 short self-tapping screws, 4 thin 3 cm furniture studs)
- Inflatable pillow "C" -shaped
- Cloth construction gloves with pimples (black or gray)
- Warm running socks with water drain
- Cotton socks
- T-shirt and tights
- Polyethylene Chinese raincoat
- Slippers cloth or homemade leather
It may seem that the list is long, but, in fact, the total weight of my backpack without the equipment that I take on business trips is about 7 kg. In addition, I take into account the delivery method of my mortal body. In this case, some things are laid out, some are added.
No need to dig into reference books and receive a medical education! We are just going to another city! Therefore, you should have knowledge only in emergency cases, which can be eliminated locally, on your own, without shouting for help and moaning about a broken nail.
In addition, you must know the weaknesses of your health and how to eliminate them. In my case, the medicine cabinet has an elastic bandage and pain medication.
But! You need to form a first-aid kit for yourself and for yourself! I repeat the hackneyed postulate: “The first-aid kit should correspond to your knowledge. This is logical. It makes no sense to keep there those things for which you do not know the application (and, more importantly, the limits of applicability). To other people, if you do not have a special education, by law you have no right to give ANY drugs, whether they are tablets, or even more so ampoules. ”
Before forming a personal first-aid kit, you need to understand a few points for yourself:
2.1. Knowledge of personal illnesses and the means of helping them. Someone has heart problems, someone always flapses their stomach after dry land, someone has any kind of stress causing Bear’s disease.
2.2. Knowledge and ability to quickly determine: I can handle it myself or need help. Self-medication is very good if you are a specialist. Otherwise, why create problems for yourself in the future? It is one thing if you accurately and logically understand that the cheburek you eaten has been in your bag for 4 days and the bag was not in the refrigerator. You know what to do, what to take and how long it takes for the entire treatment. Another point, if there is no knowledge, no experience, no means of treatment. In this case, a direct road to specialists.
2.3. Compulsory health insurance policy. In general, specifically, all documents, except for my passport, always have a paper copy lying separately, an electronic copy on a flash drive and in the cloud. I’ll write about this separately.
2.4. Download programs to a smartphone that work without the Internet. For me, there is a standard set of programs downloaded in advance to a “business trip phone”. Among them, MedBox - Medication Guide and Emergency Care. This is an option! Here everyone chooses for himself and for himself!
2.5. First Aid Kit. Initially answer, you precisely understood all the previous points? For professionals, there are good links for acquaintance and raising the general knowledge of “First-aid kit for freerider”, “First-aid kit. Livehack. ” For the rest, let me remind you, the realities of the present - there is nothing more valuable than two things - time and your own health, everything else is only temporary financial difficulties. And therefore, the first rule when using drugs: "Do no harm!". In addition, to take with you a first-aid kit, designed for a group of five people in a monthly autonomy, to take with you, to put it mildly, is not practical. For example, I have three sets: one permanent, the second for trips for a period of more than five days, the third for family trips.
The first option is simple: a set of plasters, a pill from the head and from the priests, plus a broad-spectrum antibiotic in a small package. Everything else can be bought - I'm not going to the forest. Related medical items are separate.
I give the second option of a first-aid kit for all cases of MY life without the names of drugs for purely educational purposes:
- Packaging for drugs (moisture resistant and waterproof).
- IPP - Individual dressing bag
- Medical glue
- Second glue
- A set of plasters (including a roll of tissue patch)
- Safety pins 5 pcs.
- Micro pliers
- Cotton scarf
- Elastic bandage
- Metallized adhesive tape
- Little piece lighter
- Matches wind-moisture resistant in a blister
- Condoms 3 pcs.
- Fresnel lens
- Napkins with lidocaine
- Iodine felt-tip pen
- Cold remedy in powder
- Analgesic drug in tablets
- Antidiarrheal drug
- Broad-acting antibiotic
- Enterosorbent agent (poisoning of various etymologies, including a hangover)
- Remedy for heartburn (suspension)
- Nootropic sedative action
- The drug facilitates the digestion of carbohydrates, fats and proteins, contributing to a more complete absorption in the small intestine.
- Antihistamine broad-spectrum
- Liquid antiseptic (disinfectant)
- Cough sweets
- Healing cream
- Furatsilin or potassium permanganate (not advertising, they must be able to use!)
- A printed list with a description of each drug, the order of its use / use and the expiration date by hand with a pencil.
All drugs are in the medicine cabinet in an amount based on the intake for one two days. The packaging is preserved, but cut off, a tissue patch is glued onto the foil on the back side, on which I write the name of the drug and the expiration date. The preparations are in two packages: solid waterproof (a case for fishing tricks) and waterproof (depending on the duration of the trip: a small individual first-aid kit, or a zip lock package).
First-aid kits, despite the number of things, are relatively small in weight and take up very little space. For example, the first-aid kit of the first option, which constantly hangs in a backpack, is a ball from a kinder surprise, plus a zip-lock package.
The third option to describe do not see the point. It was created under the family and it took into account many features of my household. He is big and weighs a lot.
3. Knowledge in the field of IT security.
The practice of frequent trips showed me some wonderful moments that helped me maintain my moral and psychological health more than once or twice. First: when I take equipment with me on a trip, I am mentally prepared in advance to part with it. Second: maximum protection of personal data eliminates many small and large troubles in the future.
Thinking over the trip in which I will need this or that gadget, the primary task for me is to minimize the irreparable losses from its loss. That is, before the trip, I backup the system and data in a double (sometimes triple) instance. One is stored at home, the second (with itself in an external storage) and the third, sometimes in the cloud. I synchronize all contacts on all devices with the address book of the mailing address. All the data that, falling into the wrong hands, can harm me, I store in secure repositories. On your personal and business phone there are several protections, including an anti-theft system with remote control and data destruction. A similar system is on a laptop. Plus, I store private information in secure data storages or archive it with encryption and password in WinRAR program.
Someone once told me: “If you think that you are not suffering from paranoia, this does not mean that no one is watching you.” Phones were stolen from me on the subway several times, on one trip they took my laptop away while I took the order to a cafe, and on the other I fell under heavy rain, which to some extent killed 80% of my gadgets. Cases are different. Preparing and thinking through such situations is 50% certain that they will not happen.
- Kensington Castle
- Secure data storage (for smartphone)
- Jetico BestCrypt Traveler (software protected storage for a computer, works from a flash drive without installation, creates a virtual hard drive)
- Anti-theft program with remote control (it is on both smart and laptop)
- A set of programs that work without installing from a USB flash drive.
- Currency rate calculator
- E-book reader (+ library)
4. Moral and psychological preparation.
Preparing for any trip, I constantly keep in mind the postulate that I can only assume the development of the situation. How it will develop in reality, I can not predict. I do only what depends on me today, "here and now." How the situation will turn around I can not know. "Ecological indifference" as a concept is practically every practicing psychologist in one interpretation or another. This concept allows you to avoid most of the impulsive, ill-conceived actions and allows you to maintain peace of mind even in seemingly hopeless situations. To make it clearer, I will give an example. There is a well-known popular saying: “If I knew where I would fall, I would lay straws!” So, I'm not trying to "lay the straw." I take a towel and thread with needles to quickly minimize the consequences of such a fall. In addition, when going on a trip, I am mentally prepared for the fact that I can stay without anything at all. And even in this case, I know what I need to do, as I was thinking through a decision, including force majeure. Remember, if a situation can go wrong, it will do just that.