#TravelThursday, Tips

Things you need to do before you Travel

Ok so I have my airline ticket ,Visa and itinerary and an idea of what I need to pack but is this it? Truthfully no, there is lots to do besides your actual packing before you head off to the airport. All flights be it local or international require some sort of preparation.Having a travel plan in place is essential insuring everything goes smoothly.

For international flights there is loads more to consider and plan that needs to be done in advance.Over my countless flights I have got a checklist that I go through every single time I travel and I must admit my travel plan is flop proof.

Ten things to help you plan your travels besides pack :

  1. Get Travel insurance very important in case of unexpected dramas like lost luggage and missed flights and illness cover.Some credit card companies offer you travel insurance if you buy your ticket with your card. Banks as well as your Travel agent will provide you with options. Once this is sorted make sure you print copies for you to pack into your hand luggage ,main luggage ,give copies to your family and email yourself copies of everything.
  2. Call your Medical Aid company and inform them that you will be travelling. They will require the exact dates of travel and your destination. Once all this information has been updated on the system you will be emailed a copy of your Medical Insurance cover in case of an emergency and what is covered. Print copies of these as well as make copies of your Medical Aid Card to carry with you.Make sure you have read the terms and conditions of your medical cover.It is important to keep your medical card on you incase of an emergency.
  3. Credit Cards that you will be taking with you will need authorisation from your home country. This is essential to prevent your card from been stopped while using it abroad. Here again your exact travel dates and destination need to be given. It is a good idea to carry a credit card in case of an emergency. In some cases withdrawing cash money from your credit card and making purchases by swiping give you a better rate. It is important to all write down the necessary numbers to call in case of loss or theft of credit card.
  4. A notebook is a must have when travelling. Keep details of Hotels and next of kin details. All make a list of all the things you want to see and do at your destination.
  5. Activate the SMS international roaming on your phone. This will help you keep track of your spending each time you swipe your card. With free WiFi in literally most parts of the world one really doest not need to get a sim card to keep in contact with family and friends back home.
  6. Get supplies of any chronic medication that you take as well as normal meds like painkillers and allergy tablets. Keep meds in original packaging so if you do get stopped by customs officials it is easy to identify what the meds are. For chronic medication is it advisable to get a letter from your Doctor for the above same reasons.
  7. Foreign Exchange do not leave it for lastminute.com. You can only do this once you have booked your ticket. Monitor the exchange rates, look at the various agencies including your bank. Most agencies offer a card which is like a Debit Card preloaded with your money.It is also a good idea to carry a small amount of cash in the local currency of your destination.
  8. Mail yourself everything ! scan copies of your tickets , accommodation, visas , passports , credit cards and email them to yourself. Create a folder on your email account for all these documents. Also leave a set of copies of everything with someone reliable back home should you need this information.
  9. Research your destination. Find out of eating out , know the weather and even learn how to say hello , goodbye and thank you. The locals love when tourists make an effort. Important to find out about the voltage and what kind of plug points are used.
  10. Keep a list of things to do before you go and tick off as you do each one. Include what you need to pack as well.

I hope these tips help you prepare and plan for your travels. Do you have do anything else before a trip ?
Be Inspired !

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41 thoughts on “Things you need to do before you Travel

  1. Haha. Yes! Tell your credit card companies you’ll be travelling! It still doesn’t always work though. I was caning my card in NYC after warning my bank it would happen and they still stopped it! I sorted it out within an hour or two, but it meant going through the fraud department and various security checks on the phone. Most annoying at the time, but with all the fraud going on in the world, better that they’re vigilant than not, in essence.

    1. I had the same thing happen to me! Called my banks and they still froze my accounts. Almost left me stranded cashless at the airport!

  2. I wish I were so organised when travelling. Travelling in Europe is fairly easy but there’s a lot to think about when leaving this continent. Fortunately it usually works out πŸ™‚

  3. Great post. Since we’ve only travelled 4 months in Eastern Europe most things were relatively simple, but planning a long term trip at the moment for SE Asia, we’ve realised there’s a lot more to plan out!

  4. Excellent and detailed list. Many of these we have learned as we went along, and we have experienced having the credit card stopped during travel…within our own country! It’s all about preparation, and you’ve got the bases covered.

  5. Traveling to Southeast Asia, I would still recommend buying the local SIM with a text, call and data package. There are still areas where wi-fi is not available and international roaming is very expensive. It would also be good to have to contact local hotels, restaurants and tours while on the go in case of emergency especially without a travel agent. Great list πŸ™‚

  6. Thank you for including “contact your bank”! I used to work in a customer contact centre for one of Australia’s biggest banks, and you wouldn’t BELIEVE the number of people who found themselves overseas with no access to their cards because our systems had detected unusual activity in a foreign country and blocked them. This is such an important step that so many people miss!! Thank you so much for adding it to your list πŸ˜‰
    I’m really good about emailing myself copies of everything and taking copies of everything with me… but I so often fall down on the research front! Even though I know I should be reading up and planning ahead on what to see and do, I so often fall into the trap of thinking “JUST LIVE FREE, GO WHERE THE SPIRIT MOVES YOU, BE IN THE MOMENT, YOU’LL FIND EVERYTHING AND FIGURE IT OUT AS YOU GO”. And I am 100% wrong, 100% of the time. So thanks as well for the reminder πŸ˜‰ hahaha.

  7. Couldn’t agree more with these helpful tips. So easy to forget something. Having copies of every document you may be needing is essential for your peace of mind. But then again, so are most of your other tips!

  8. You know what? I always pack some food and an extra pair of underwear in my carry on. You never know. I happened to travel to a place on a holiday and did not expect they would observe it to strictly as to have all stores closed. Was able to only get food the following day. So I was grateful for the package of instant noodles, instant coffee and the biscuits I had brought from home!

  9. Great and complete list! I think it is always good to have a list for these kind of things, the amount of times I have forgotten one of these points. Thanks for sharing!

  10. This is a great list! I love to check things off as I go and it’s so easy to forget something when traveling if you don’t have a to-do and pack list!

  11. Great tips!

    I’m taking my son on holiday to Greece at the end of the month. i’m not a very experienced traveller, not as much as I wish anyway, so will be reading through this again soon to get myself organised. Thanks πŸ™‚

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