8 Tips To Make International Traveling Easier
After weeks of considering which country would be the best destination for your next gateway, you’ve finally made up your choice on that overseas vacation. Congratulations!
Traveling abroad can be a very worthwhile and rewarding experience. Being exposed to new places, people and cultures will create memories for a lifetime and broaden your horizons.
However, before you embark on your hard-earned trip, you will have to jump a few necessary hurdles so your vacation can go off without a hitch.
If this is your first time traveling internationally or you just need a refresher, here is a list of things you need to accomplish before and during your break.
1. CHECK FOR VISA REQUIREMENTS: many countries require having an entry visa or travel permit before entering the country. Always find out if you need a visa before you leave on your trip. You can do online research or the embassy of the country you will be visiting can advice on this. International visas can be complicated, but there are tons of resources to help you, from official government websites to travel bloggers who have done it before. Check your sources and plan in advance for it.
2. CALL YOUR BANK: before you leave, keep your bank in the know with a travel notice. If you are using your card in a new location, especially a foreign country, it is a red flag for potential fraud and your bank may end up declining the charge and block your card. To avoid the hassle of contacting your bank while traveling, you can send a secure message through their online portal prior to your trip or call them directly. And while you are at it, make sure you have the right card for your trip. Some travel credit cards charge no foreign transaction fees, making them a great travel companion for overseas trips.
3. EXCHANGE YOUR MONEY: if you are new to traveling abroad, you might feel more confident if you already have a few euros, pesos, or dollars in your pocket. If that is the case, consider purchasing foreign currency from your bank or credit union before you depart. It may happen that your local bank doesn’t carry foreign currency, so if this is the case, plan ahead as it may take a few days to order the currency. Make sure you avoid airport kiosks or stores as their exchange rates are poor, and fees are high.
4. BUY AN INTERNATIONAL POWER ADAPTER: travel adapters come in a various range of sizes, styles, and weights, with all kinds of extra features. Did you know there are approximately twelve different types of power sockets in common use around the world? Therefore, you are better off with a universal travel adapter rather than single-region ones. They tend to be larger than the single adapters, but they often have extra features like USB sockets. Buy your adapter prior to your trip rather than waiting until you get to the airport, as it will be much cheaper.
5. TAKE THE HOTEL BUSINESS CARD: in a new destination make sure to take a business card from the hotel. It will almost always have the address of the hotel written in both English and the local language, which will come in handy should you lose your way or need directions.
6. AVOID INTERNATIONAL DATA ROAMING: data roaming is very expensive and you will never know how much data is getting drained for which your service provider is charging you. You will, unfortunately, be welcomed back home by a massive phone bill. Switch off data roaming on your handset before you land to avoid immediate, unintentional email downloads resulting in hefty charges and enjoy free Wi-Fi zones in local cafés, and restaurants. Take advantage of your vacation to disconnect and disable the data-hungry apps and avoid streaming high-quality videos and music.
7. TAKE CARE OF YOUR HEALTH: your health should be one of your priorities when planning a trip abroad. It is important to do your research and know the health risks before you go. You can check warnings and advisories with your country’s government website or do online research and check the vaccines' requirements and stock your first aid kit for general emergencies. Keep your immune system boosted with healthy food and give your body a good rest so it can fight sickness and disease better. Also, it is vital to have the right travel insurance and make sure your policy covers your destination, the duration of your stay, as well as any specific activities you might do.
8. TRAVEL LIGHT: packing small is essential for any globetrotter committed to embracing the chaos of travel. Maximize your suitcase real estate by rolling your clothes and bringing packing cubes. Slim down your toiletry and cosmetic bags by taking only what you know you will be using. Pack travel-size bottles for your shampoo and conditioner and Distinct Scent pocket spray for your perfume.