Just as you strategize every other activity that you undertake, so will the success of your trip abroad be a result of proper planning and execution. The duration of your planning process and its execution will depend on the choice of location and your travel period. In this article, I would like to highlight a ‘to do list’ which will be beneficial to every person willing to travel abroad in the near future. This list will be helpful to a broad range of travelers (including luxury and family vacations) and will not only be a locus focus for backpackers and budget travelers.
I will segregate the list in 6 broad categories under which I will be stating the related things that you should do before you start your travel adventure abroad.
First and foremost, the amount of time that you spend collecting information about the destination you plan to visit, deciding the dates for the trip and in finding accommodation and flights suitable to you will add to the quality of your trip.
- Secure the dates for your travel and book your flights.
- Plan a detailed itinerary of your trip indicating date and timing of the activities you plan to participate in along with your group (in case you are traveling with family or friends).
- Check out different destination guidebooks for more details about the place. You can also refer to travel blogs and vlogs by travelers that will give you a better understanding of places you are to visit. Here you might also come across hidden gems of the place that you will not find in any of the travel guides.
- Most importantly, do not fail to find information about things you are allergic to or things you might not able to accomplish. For example, you might want to visit Leh Ladakh, but if you have a high blood pressure you might consider not visiting the place as oxygen content in the air you breathe will be tremendously low due to high altitude.
2. TRAVEL DOCUMENTS
Without research you will definitely be able to travel, but without necessary travel documents you’re never going to make it anywhere.
- Most important is your passport. Without this document you cannot set a foot outside your country (unless you are an Indian traveling to Nepal). If you do not have one, apply now (only for Indians).
- Find out if you need a visa to enter the country you desire to visit. If yes, follow proper procedure and acquire the visa before your travel dates.
- In case of emergency, carry an identity proof such as an election voter ID or Licence or Aadhaar card (if you’re an Indian) or any identity proof for others.
- Do not forget to insure yourself and your belongings in case of any mishaps.
- 2 photocopies of your passport, visa, insurance and your identity proof. One you leave with someone at home, another one you carry along with the originals on your trip.
- In case you plan to drive, you might have to check if your domestic license is eligible in the country you are visiting. If not, find out how to get an international driving permit.
Without money you can still survive abroad just as many of those travelers who did. Ask them how to survive without any money on a foreign land. But to be honest, it’s not a cup of tea for every individual. Thus it will be necessary to do the below mentioned things.
- In today’s world, we no longer carry a travelers’ cheque or a bulk of cash. And hence I would suggest that you carry about 20-25 percent of your total amount in local currency of the country you are visiting and remaining amount in a currency cards issued by various banks.
- Inquire at multiple desks to get a competitive conversion rate.
- Inform your bank that you will be traveling to so and so country so that your card doesn’t get blocked following a few transactions in that country, as some banks often due to safety issues might take such actions.
- Enable your account and card for international transactions. This is what most of us fail to do as we think that an international debit or credit card might be enabled for international transactions on default, while this is not the case with most of the banks due to safety concerns.
- Carry a little more money than what you have budgeted for your trip.
4. GADGETS (Technology)
Gadgets and technology is all you need to decorate your trip. This will be useful for most part of your journey starting from booking your travel journey to coming back home with all those amazing eye catchy pictures and videos.
- Carry a smartphone. Click here to buy one
- Check if you have converters or adapters needed for you to charge your phone in a foreign country. If you don’t have one, buy one now. It’s a must. You can buy them here
- A portable charger will be very handy to charge your phone or camera in case it runs out of battery mid-day.
- A camera will be your best friend on your trip abroad. Click here to check out some amazing camera’s that you could carry on your trip. A DSLR for portraits and landscapes, while a GoPro for your adventures and selfies is a great idea.
- Download all necessary apps that you might need while traveling. Some of the basic ones I would suggest are; Whatsapp to keep in touch with people, trip lingo so that you can communicate in local language if need arises and a flight and accommodation booking app for emergency booking of flight tickets or a place to stay.
You need to be fit and fine to make the most of your time abroad.
- Carry your ongoing medication along with you on your journey.
- Research if you need any vaccinations before visiting a certain place. For example many tourists from the west who are visiting South East Asia tend to avail vaccinations, one of which is to safeguard from monkey bite.
- Carry basic medicines which you feel might be important to keep up with good health.
- Ask your doctor to give you a prescription of medicines to carry with you abroad.
Packing light is your key mantra for happy travel experience. You don’t want to be carrying a heavy load whenever and wherever you go. It could be cumbersome so carry a heavy bag while on a long trip as you might have to shift from one city to another very often.
- Carry what is necessary for you.
- Make sure food, liquids and metals are packed into your check in baggage.
- Check the weather and pack accordingly. We often tend to carry clothes we like, but end up not using them throughout the trip. I’m sure you don’t want to carry what you don’t want to use.
- Buy a backpack or a suitcase what will be useful and allowed on most of the airlines. Some budget airlines also consider the dimensions of your baggage apart from weight.
Your preparation is definitely not limited to this. Though I can assure you a great trip if you follow these steps. Do remember to write me back if this is useful to you. And all comments and suggestions are very much welcomed. Do subscribe, share and comment.
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