You’ve booked your first flight, set your out of office and are ready to go on the adventure of a lifetime! But hang on, have you done everything you need to yet? This blog lays out six things you need to remember before you set off to ensure you have total peace of mind as you embark on your travels.
1. Check the visa situations of the countries you’re travelling to
It can be a nightmare arriving in a new country to find out you aren’t allowed in without a pre-approved visa. Some places will make you pay a hefty on the spot fine, whilst others will send you packing the way you came. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy to check this out online – just search your government’s website for the most up to date information on entry requirements.
2. Get equipped with the best smartphone apps for travelling
Old school tools like maps and travel journals are great, but the real power traveller is prepared with the new breed of travel guide: applications. Apps like Citymapper, Grab, XE Currency, Skyscanner and many more will save you time, peace of mind and often a good amount of money!
3. Insure yourself!
Of course you’re going to do your best to stay safe, that’s a given. But accidents do happen, and if disaster does strike you’ll want the safety of knowing you’re covered. Whether that’s for petty theft of your possessions, a flight delay or a nasty fall whilst trying out canyoning, it’s important to be prepared and be insured. Some providers will even cover your luggage and personal effects up to the cost of $15,000!
4. Sign up to loyalty programmes and be informed to make the most of your money
Even in the cheapest countries, the cost of travelling adds up quickly. So why not be as prepared as possible to make your money work for you? Signing up to airline loyalty programmes and collecting air miles can make a huge difference to flight prices in the long run, as can ensuring you gain status with hotel booking sites like Expedia or Booking.com. Travel-focused credit cards like those offered by American Express might not be for everyone, but for the global traveller, the rewards – often including air miles, hotel points and airport lounge passes – can be a huge boost.
5. Learn a little of the local culture and, if you can, a few key phrases
It’s *always* appreciated when a tourist can make the little extra effort to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ in the local language. This is especially true when you’re embracing the local street market scene rather than remaining in a travellers’ compound, which we don’t recommend. Why travel, otherwise? Street markets are often a way of life in many countries and are where you can find the best – and often the cheapest – examples of local cuisine, so do your research before you travel!
6. Keep a record!
You’re going on the adventure of a lifetime. Memories last forever, sure, but it’d be great to have something to look back on in the future just in case some of the details are a little hazy. A little journal can work for some, whilst others may prefer a dedicated Instagram page or online blog. Work out your favourite with a little practice before you set off, so you can start off on the front foot.
Follow these tips and enjoy your travels!