There is no need to book hotels or apartments early as long as there is not high season. Study where you go and you may book early if free cancelation, then you are free to change and get the best deal. Most cases we have bad experience with early bookings and great experience with bookings close up to the visit.
In most cases Google map is a fantastic, and it even selects roads that you never will visit unless google help you finding them. Even in Indonesia it works most of the time. The only problem is that google map does not differ if you drive a normal car, 4wd or motor bike. My advice is: ask the locals when you end up in suspicious places, and you may study the map before starting the drive.
In every passport there is now an area that is machine readable (below the picture of you). Especially for persons with Æ, Ø and Å in their names this is important in order to avoid spending extra money and time. Passport, Visas and flight tickets should be exactly the same!
Using prepaid sim card will nearly always be a good idea when outside Europe. The most effective way is to buy it on the airport – you want get lost and you do not have to spend a lot of time to get it elsewhere.
We arrived in Hua Hin in the evening after leaving Siv and Luna at the airport in Bangkok. They went to Serbia and the boys was going to wait in Hua Hin. Ole stayed in an apartment resort north of the centre. Emeric and Ib stayed in a hotel in the centre of Hua Hin. After one day, we had experienced the same thing. Young girls offering all kind of services and we did not feel very good about it. My apartment was nearly 1 km from the nearest restaurant. The resort I stayed in was nearly empty but with a fantastic pool and training facilities. After renting a car the boys often visited me to work out.
After one week Emeric and I went to Bangkok, and I had an eye surgery that with fantastic results.
Below are some pictures from our stay in Hua Hin.
Using internet and services like TripAdvisor are something we all do to find a cheap and good restaurant. However there are other methods that function better. In large cities the best priced food is often at 1st or 2nd floor. Look where the locals goes, then the experience will be best. TripAdvisor does only give you tourist places that all are more or less expensive. In Bangkok some days ago Emeric and I did eat lunch for only 1,5 US$ each. Good food and good service.
In Malaysia several larger apartment buildings had a community cantina at ground floor, and I think the people living there had an opportunity to get dinner every day for a small amount of money. And they did not have to spend time, shopping, making the dinner or clean up after. Much like we are doing traveling around this year:) Is this a business idea possible to realise in Norway?