At Printfresh, we LOVE to travel. There is something incredibly inspiring and refreshing about getting out of your comfort zone and experiencing new places and different cultures. All of our products (including our Travel Journals) are manufactured in India, and our Creative Director Amy and Designer Christiane travel to Delhi and Jaipur twice a year to work with artisans and gather inspiration for new collections. We came up with the design for our Travel Journal while we were starting to plan one of last year's trips, and really wanted to develop the perfect travel companion diary.

In designing our Travel Journals, we knew we wanted to create a space where you can not only comprehensively plan upcoming trips, but also record your memories and experiences from those excursions. We chose to size our journal for a 10-Day trip, but you can definitely adjust your record keeping based on shorter or longer itineraries.


Why keep a journal while traveling?

There are so many benefits to journaling in general (Amy shared some of her thoughts on the subject here), but keeping a diary about your travels can really help you get the most out of a trip. Writing down what you did each day, where you went, and how it made you feel will help you fully absorb your surroundings and appreciate the culture, customs and people. Not only will writing things down help you retain the details for years to come, if you or a friend decides to visit this destination again, you'll have your own customized travel guide!

How do I get the most out of my travel journal?

1. Spend time with your journal pre-planning your trip. Use the Itinerary section to fill in your destination(s), transportation info (flights, trains, etc), hotel locations and travel companions. Record important items that you can't forget to pack, as well as the errands you need to run before leaving. There's nothing worse than starting your vacation with the discovery that you forgot to pack underwear!

2. Use the convenient pocket in the back of your journal to keep boarding passes, museum stubs, public transportation tickets and other small mementos. Use it to stay organized throughout your travels, and keep adding to it throughout your trip. You'll be in for a fun surprise when you open your travel journal years later to find these small treasures!

3. Do some research about your destination, and start thinking about some of the specific landmarks, cultural attractions, shops and eateries that you'd love to visit. Use this space for brainstorming - you don't have to do everything on this list, but can pick and choose depending on how you feel each day. There's a happy medium between a strictly regimented calendar and a completely organic, decide-on-the-fly vacation.


4. Once your trip begins, take 15 minutes at the end of each day (or piecemeal throughout the day, as you stop for coffee or catch your breath at the top of a steep hike) to fill in the daily diary pages. There are dedicated spaces to record date and location, and then plenty of lines to jot down the places you visited and how each made you feel. 

You can be as brief or as wordy as you'd like. Short bullet points can help jog your full memory later when you return to these pages to reflect. On the other hand, long stream-of-consciousness paragraphs can instantly transport you back to this place.

5. Use the "Notes" and "Sketches/Mementos" pages throughout your trip, as you would a normal notebook or sketchpad. In the past, we've used this space for some of the following:
  • Drawing out a couple city maps for those times when our international cellphone service was spotty.
  • Making blind contour drawings of other tourists during our afternoon coffee break at a cute cafe.
  • Jotting down destination suggestions from our hotel's helpful concierge.
  • Recording some easy language translations of conversational phrases.
  • Drawing a quick money conversion chart so we could make sure not to overspend on shopping trips.

6. At the end of your trip, revisit your daily diary pages and fill out the "Highlights" page in your journal. Write about some of the highs and lows of your travel, including things that went wrong, the best food you ate, the most magical experiences and places, and cool shopping. Did you forget anything on this trip? Writing it down may help you be more prepared for your next adventure!

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Follow and share your travel journaling with us on Instagram at @printfresh - we'd love to hear about the amazing places you've visited, and how our journals held up as a travel companion!