8 Tips for the “I Am Tourist” Double Decker Bus

I haven’t yet worn a bright Hawaiin shirt on my travels. I would want to be streetsmart and not look like I’m lost even if I were, avoid walking around reading a map, sling a big camera around my neck, and do the usual things that invite con artists to take you for a ride.

But I don’t see why I must avoid a double decker tour bus to better appreciate a city I’m visiting for the first time.  Given the chance, time, and if the city offers it, I like taking the Hop-On Hop-Off Big double decker sightseeing bus. In fact, that’s my preference for my first time to visit a city, so I could get my bearings and an overview of the city before I look at places up close. I find it time-efficient, cost-efficient, and it maximizes my visit instead of settling for spurts of microscopic views.

When I took this bus on my recent trip to Singapore though, I learned some lessons and thought I’d share with you:

  1. Come early. Check online what time the bus is expected at the stop nearest you. Try to be there at least a half hour earlier so you can get a better seat.
  2. Don’t crowd your schedule. These sightseeing bus will already take you to so many places. Booking an appointment on the same day will cut short your tour. So I learned.
  3. Take lots of pictures. It happens so fast; sometimes it helps to orient yourself with locations and buildings as they will appear in the sequence of distance.  Having been freed from 35mm film and camera trappings, it’s a breeze to just delete photos when you have no more use for the photos.
  4. Have extra batteries or power banks for whatever gadgets you use.
  5. The second floor of the bus has a more panoramic view for photos.
  6. Check weather and take some sun, wind, or cold protection (a wide brimmed hat/ cap) as needed. Lip balms are an understated blessing. Chapped lips are so inconvenient.
  7. Designate a pocket for storing the bus ticket for easy hopping on and off over and over for the period you pay for.
  8. The earphones are reusable even if disposable. They can come in handy for times when you don’t want to lose your good earphones.

There are so many things to see and do in Singapore which we have gone to on and off over the years but it’s nice to get a refresher once in a while. This was from my short tour of Little India and Arab Street, Singapore before I had to abandon the tour to make it to my lunch appointment:img_3032img_3030img_3027img_3044img_3036img_3028img_3033img_3046img_3048img_3053img_3054img_3057img_3066I think that seeing other cultures, traditions, and meeting other people builds bridges of understanding with all the people God loves.


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