Useful tips to keep in mind even when your travel is already booked
That’s NOT what this post is about.
Most people stop their planning when they have booked transportation and accommodation, but in fact, travel planning doesn’t stop there. Here are some simple – and most time forgotten – useful tips and things to have in mind even when your travel is already booked.
If you are like most of the people, chances are that you will buy your international air ticket before anything else. Only after that you’ll start looking for accomodation, right?!
Keep in mind the timezones and travel dates. All air tickets display LOCAL departure and arrival times. You must look at local times in order to book your accomodation acordingly (the last thing you want is to get to your destination and find out your hotel is only booked from the next day onwards), or if you’re buying two separate tickets to get to your destination (sometimes it’s cheaper to buy two separate tickets if there are no direct flights, but keep an eye at hte travel date and time to avoid beign stuck at the airport for more than you should… or to find out your connecting flight has already departured).
Share your travel information and keep it accessible
Check your passport and necessary visa(s)
Get a local SIM Card and use wi-fi at your destination
Also keep in mind your internet costs. Almost every single hotel, store, restaurant and shopping center has free public wi-fi, so use it to your benefit.
Buy a first aid travel kit
What you need in your first aid kit will depend on your destination and the duration of your trip. If you can easily pop into the chemist in London or New York City, then you won’t need to carry much; however if you’re hiking or on safari, you’ll need a more robust first aid travel kit. Also keep in mind that overseas formulations for medications may not be the same as in your country, so if you depend on some specific medication, it’s best to bring home your own medicine.
The best thing is that you can take your travel kit on your journeys - hopefully - many times!
Buy travel insurance
It can also cover you for trip cancellation, trip interruptions, loss or theft of your gear, and emergency transportation should you need to get to the nearest hospital fast. Some credit cards do offer travel insurance, but with very limited protection. Some offer coverage for lost or stolen items, medical expenses, and trip cancellation if you booked your trip with the card, but they may not cover you being airlifted home or anything else. Bottom line: don’t rely on credit card coverage for any more than lost or stolen items, and maybe not even that.
Check out www.travelnomads.com or www.travelexinsurance.com for some of the best options.
Weather & Packing
Organize your clothes and pack them the smart way. Buy some travel organizers for your clothes and electronics. It will save you lots of time and space! It’s (another) must have!
You should also weigh your luggage before you leave home. Most people forget all the souvenirs that will buy during their trip. Even if you keep you keep your weight under the airline limits before leaving home, chances are that you will bring more weight back home… and you will end up paying extra fees at the airport on your way back. Get a luggage scale and avoid unpleasent surprises… it’s much cheaper than the imposed fees by your airline!
Sign up for travel alerts & check out for price drops
Keep in mind that air ticket pricing is constantly changing and you need to keep tracking in order to make sure the person sitting next to you on the aircraft hasn’t paid much less than you for the same service. That’s why it is so importante to get a travel consultant to help you out customize your journey.
Save money at your destination
You can also save (lots of) money by eating like a local (street food!)
Not only tasting new cuisines is part of the joy of travelling but you're likely to eat far better. From $1 bowls of noodles across most countries in Asia to backstreet French bistros, produce is usually locally sourced and tastier, rather than imported. Get out of your comfort zone and give it a try. You will love it!