Five things to keep in mind before you travel

If this is your first time travelling abroad, or maybe you just need a refresher, here’s a list of five things you should do or prepare before your trip

31 March 2017, 11:04am
Guidebooks are also helpful, they usually include maps, key words or phrases, and give you enough detail on certain sites
Guidebooks are also helpful, they usually include maps, key words or phrases, and give you enough detail on certain sites
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Buy tickets now for places you know you want to visit or see. By buying in advance you’ll be able to skip more lines, and find more deals targeted toward you.

Guidebooks are also helpful, they usually include maps, key words or phrases, and give you enough detail on certain sites that you won’t need to purchase the pamphlet at the venue. And also download apps which might be of use before you travel. 

Research events going on while you’re there. This will help you make sure that you’re not missing the best events going on in the city fun things like festivals, ceremonies, football matches. Also be sure to research as a few national dishes to try. You don’t want to leave the country without experiencing what its known for.

Electronics

Activate your phone’s global capabilities
Activate your phone’s global capabilities
Bring a charger adapter. Countries have different size plugs and voltage. So if you want to use your iPhone or iPad, make sure you can charge it.

Check the voltage of your electronics. Nothing is worse than having an adapter and still not being able to use a blow-dryer or a straightener because the voltage isn’t high enough for that country.

Activate your phone’s global capabilities. There’s usually a charge for doing this, but it is much less than the roaming charges you’ll get if you don’t.

Luggage & Packing

Make sure to look up what your airline’s rules are to avoid any incremental fees
Make sure to look up what your airline’s rules are to avoid any incremental fees
Pack an extra set of clothes in your carry-on bag. Don’t be one of those travellers decked out in J’adore Paris apparel because the airline lost your luggage and you have nothing else to wear.

Each airline has its own set of guidelines as to how many bags can be checked or carried on for free. Make sure to look up what your airline’s rules are to avoid any incremental fees.

Travelling abroad is fun, but eating in a foreign country can sometimes become a task. Bring small snacks that will tide you over until you find that perfect restaurant or food cart.

If you think you might do a fair bit of shopping on your travels, then pack a thin, lightweight duffel bag in your carry-on or checked suitcase. That way, if you have too much stuff, you can check an extra bag on the way back. 

Security & Health

If your passport gets stolen or lost you want to be sure that you can still get back into the country, or be able to prove your citizenship
If your passport gets stolen or lost you want to be sure that you can still get back into the country, or be able to prove your citizenship
Check-in with your doctor and insurance carrier. Double check and make sure that you have all of the proper vaccinations and that you have renewed all essential prescriptions. Also, ask you medical insurance provider if your policy applies overseas for emergencies. If it doesn’t, and you want to add extra coverage, consider supplemental insurance.

Bring copies of your passport. If your passport gets stolen or lost you want to be sure that you can still get back into the country, or be able to prove your citizenship. For extra backup, leave a copy of your passport at home or with someone you trust. Consider making an electronic copy you can store in your email account as well.

Register with your embassy. If there’s a problem in the country, this will make it easier for your government to contact you and get you to safety.

Money

Make sure your credit card will work in the country you’re visiting
Make sure your credit card will work in the country you’re visiting
Look up the monetary conversion before you go. Make sure you do your math before you travel to get a sense of where the conversion rate is at. Make sure your credit card will work in the country you’re visiting. European banks have switched almost completely to the more secure chip-and-PIN technology, and fewer businesses abroad are accepting the outdated magnetic-stripe cards.

It is important to always have local cash. Not every place takes credit cards. Especially important places like trains or buses. Last but certainly not least call your bank or credit card provider. Sometimes banks think that fraud may be occurring if transactions are suddenly happening in Bali when you’re from Malta, and they will turn off your card as a security measure.