As you are travelling here, there and everywhere around the world, you gather useful knowledge, tips and tricks that help you along your way. These are our top tips for when you next take the plunge into a holiday. What are yours?
1. TRAVEL INSURANCE IS A MUST
An essential part of travelling is to take out Comprehensive Travel Insurance and ensure it covers you for the places you plan to visit, and the things you plan to do. Accidents, travel delays and cancellations and at worst, a medical evacuation can all be rather expensive if you are not insured.
2. PACK YOUR OWN BAGS
ALWAYS be aware of what is packed in your own bags. NEVER carry anything for another person or you may find yourself in hot water!
Make sure your passport has at least 6 months validity from your planned date of RETURN! Many countries require different ranges of validity, and you don’t want to be caught out. As soon as you book your holiday (or even before) check, then update if needed.
4. BE A SMART TRAVELLER
Check the latest travel advice for your destination.
CHECK you have the correct visas for all the countries you are visiting or transiting. CHECK any other entry or exit requirements. Preferably, BEFORE you leave home!
6. KEEP IN TOUCH
Keep in contact with friends and family back home so they know where you are and that you have not been in an accident, terrorised or stolen (all situations my mum thinks has happened when I have been out of touch while on holiday). In today’s modern world keeping in touch should not be hard to do. Facebook, twitter, email, phone or even go old school and send a letter or a postcard!
It’s also a good idea to make copies of your travel itinerary, passport details, insurance policy, traveller’s cheques, visas and credit card numbers. Carry one copy in a separate place to the originals and leave a copy with someone you trust at home – just in case you need replacements in a hurry.
7. HEALTH & MEDICATIONS
Check with health professionals on the recommended vaccinations and other health precautions. Remember that vaccinations could be an entry requirement for some countries. Also REMEMBER, if you require medication while overseas, that certain medicines are NOT allowed in some countries. You will need to check this.
8. THE LAW
OBEY the laws of the country you are in. It’s a good idea to be aware as most countries have different laws, rules, cultural expectations – everyone is different.
9. FOOD & WATER
Food onboard a cruise, provided within a tour or when dining at your hotel should, generally speaking, be fine to eat without any worry. When eating from street vendors, at a place you have not been before, destinations that have food and health warnings etc., try to ensure any cooked food or hot drinks reach boiling temperature. This may minimize the effects of any lurking nasties). Wash any fresh produce with bottled water and peel any fruit yourself.
If water is suspect you may want to drink bottled water to avoid waterborne bugs. And NO ice in drinks – it’s frozen water!
Although half the fun of travelling is trying the local cuisine and eating out in the big, wide world – just be a little more cautious in your choices to try and stay healthy while travelling.
10. LEAVE SOMETHING FOR NEXT TIME
Travel is a journey of discovery, and you cannot, will not see absolutely EVERYTHING in one go. Take time to explore what you can in the time you have, and leave a little something for the next time you return. (I missed the Spanish Steps in Rome – I know hard to do, but I did. So now I have something to go back for, as well as the numerous art galleries, all the beautiful Bernini fountains and more.)
11. LESS IS MORE
On the subject travel tips for packing again… Less is definitely more. Wear things twice if needed. Most people WILL NOT mention that you have had the same jeans on for 3 days running. They just don’t care. So minimize your packing. Go with a smaller suitcase and you will never need to worry about lugging a ginormous suitcase through the streets again. Or… go cruising – you only have to unpack once!
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