Whether you are leaving town for a weekend getaway, or heading off to a foreign location for weeks on end, traveling brings with it a certain amount of worries and trepidations. Hopefully the ideas we have for you here will help to put your mind at ease, and lead to happier, safer trip.
To get the best deals on flight prices, browse through several travel sites at once before you purchase your tickets. Some good options are kayak.com, southwest.com and priceline.com. On external websites, you can often find ticket prices that are less than the price on the original retailer’s site. However, always make sure to read the fine print to avoid hidden fees. Bon Voyage!
When traveling, whether it’s for a day or a month, don’t advertise your absence on social media sites. If you do, this lets people know that you’re going to be away from home and that most likely your house will be empty. This significantly raises your chances of being robbed while you’re out of town.
Be respectful and patient towards security checkpoints and customs officials. In most cases, these exist for your safety. If not, being upset still won’t help you get through any faster. In fact, making a fuss at the security checkpoint is almost always a ticket to the express lane for the extra search.
If you are traveling into a malaria-prone area, in addition to anti-malaria pills, bring a mosquito net or find a room with a large ventilation fan. The net is best as it can almost completely stop mosquitoes from getting to you at night. The fan works because mosquitoes cannot fly as well into the wind, but it is not fool-proof.
If you are traveling with a companion but you do not normally share funds, consider having a joint wallet, for expenses like meals, travel and lodging. You and your companion can add the same amount of money to the joint wallet each day. This way, you aren’t constantly splitting bills or exchanging money.
Instead of putting your liquids in a plastic bag to prevent them from leaking, try unscrewing the lid and putting a piece of plastic from a grocery bag over the top and screwing the lid on over it. While a zip-lock bag will prevent spills from ruining things, this method will prevent things from spilling in the first place.
A laptop or an Internet capable smart phone is one of the best travel tools you can take with you. By having the ability to go online you have all the maps and other resources you need right at your fingertips. You can research destinations, motels, and attractions while you are on the road.
Before leaving on an overseas vacation, ensure that there are at least six months from your planned date of travel and when your passport expires. Many airlines will refuse to allow you to board unless you meet this minimum requirement. In other cases, you will not be able to enter your destination country. In any case, it is easier to ‘be safe than sorry.’
If you’re going on a cruise, it’s advisable to bring your own alcohol. While food is unlimited on the ship, alcohol is not. They won’t charge you anything right then and there, instead you’ll just swipe your room key. But come check out time, you may find you’ve racked up hundreds if not thousands of dollars worth of alcohol if you and your family like to drink.
When traveling abroad, always make a copy of your passport and keep it in a separate location from your original. Should you lose your original passport, having a copy can make getting a duplicate easier and faster. Your embassy will also likely ask for some basic information that the duplicate will contain.
If you have a baby or toddler that sleeps in the car, plan your drive around nap time. This will keep the drive a lot quieter and will take care of quite a chunk of time that you do not have to find things to occupy your child. This, in turn, will help ease some of the restlessness that comes with a long car ride.
If you have medical conditions or if you want to be on the safe side during your trips, consult with foreign consulates to get a list that contains local physicians that speak and understand English. Your hotel’s concierge can also recommend doctors, including the one that they may use.
Make sure to place all of your medication in your carry-on bag. Be sure that they are in their original pharmacy containers with their pharmacy labels, so that the bag can easily travel through airport security. It also helps to know the generic names for all of your medications in case you need to speak with a local pharmacist who doesn’t know them by brand name.
Put your smart phone to work for you when you travel. Email your itinerary to yourself so you can quickly access it from your phone, from anywhere. Use your phone for photos, text messaging home, checking weather forecasts, keeping track of the time zone and so many more things that will make your travels simpler.
Pack snacks if you will be traveling by car. A good rule of thumb is to pack what you’re thinking and then double that. A little bit of food goes a long way toward keeping everyone in a good mood. Even some junk food wouldn’t hurt this time.
Make sure you arrive at the airport a couple of hours before your flight. Long gone are the days of quick and easy travel. Plan on long lines and complicated procedures. If you arrive at least two hours for domestic, and four hours for international, you should have no issues.
If you follow the advice we have laid out for you in this article, you should be able to take at least some of the stress out of your trip. Every trip comes with its own ups and downs and elements you can’t control, but armed with good advice and shrewd tips, you can minimize your worrying, and maximize your relaxation and fun.