Traveling inside your own country is a blessing and must be done during life. However, our planet has a wide variety of places abroad and getting to know them will improve yourself and make you more tolerant and comprehensive to other cultures. They say, ‘travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer’ and whoever came up with this quote couldn’t be more right.
However, traveling internationally may gather different challenges from traveling inside ‘the comfort zone’. There is a bigger to-do list and you will have to be more aware at what you are packing. Alongside these concerns, all of the traveling preparation should be based on safety, health ensuring and financial necessities. Whether you are travelling for Summer or Winter, take a look at this essential checklist before an adventure abroad.
Prepare your safety
This first mentioned topic is the one that people ignore the most. Travel insurance and state department alerts are fundamental in case of some emergency situations abroad. Many travelers don’t take part in the small percentage that requires evacuation assistance or protection from hotel or flight cancellations. For example, in the year of 2015, the harsh weather resulted in about 5.3 billion dollars in lost productivity and out of pocket costs. This result represents almost twice as much as the typical winter average, including canceled flights.
Subscribing to a State Department of alerts in your destination might help you avoiding upcoming restrictions and events that you were not aware of. Any alerts you receive will assist you in planning a successful holiday. The same with the traveling insurance. It can cost some more dollars a day, however, it can cover anything from a broken camera to emergency medical care. This will potentially save you hundreds, in case something happens.
Travel documents, identification, and banking
Make sure your passport or identity is up to date and it won’t expire any time soon, or at least when you are abroad. Most countries require a passport that is valid for at least six months after you scheduled the return. Keep physical and digital copies of your passport and all the paper documents just in case something gets lost or stolen. Don’t forget to keep emergency contacts with you and to let your family or friends now your itinerary.
Give a call to your bank to resolve some questions you might have about international payments. Ask about ATM’s, money taxes and all of the issues you might have. If you lose your money or something happens, there is a good chance your holidays are ruined. Don’t let that happen.
Keep your vaccines certificate in your carry on in case someone asks for it. Get all the vaccinations you need before visiting a new country. Talk to your family doctor, explain to him/her where you are going and take the needed measures with some time ahead.
Get to know your destination
Having knowledge about your destination is crucial. Read about the region and country you are traveling and make sure you don’t get any unpleasant surprises. Appropriate clothing, weather, food, money conversion, and all the aspects that should avoid you to get in a compromising situation.
Remember that even when gambling you need to know the rules of the game: you won’t bet on the MLB odds if you know nothing about baseball, right? So, for example, you should know that it is illegal to take chewing gum to Singapore, due to the damage it causes. Simple things to you might be a greater deal outside your country.
Having an available phone card so people can contact you is important. In most of the places nowadays there is a WIFI connection. However, not everywhere you will go can guarantee you that. Buying an international phone plan ahead of time or unlocking your phone so you can make calls through a foreign carrier is the best option, even if it sounds a bit old style.
Make your home safe before departure
Keep your daily tasks on the schedule before you leave or ask a friend to take care of something that needs to be taken care of at your home. If you have pets, find a house or a pet sitter to watch over your buddy. Don’t abandon your animal just because you are going on holidays. Lock the doors, windows and avoid sharing to strangers that you are outside your home.
Download the necessities
GPS offline maps will save your data and battery as well as downloaded music and movies. Get a portable charger to your phone and don’t get bored during the times you can’t avoid, such as a flight.
Pack the essentials: clothes, comfy shoes, medication, cash, electronic adapters, identification and get ready for the adventure!