How to Prepare for Your Trip Abroad

Nothing ruins a good vacation abroad like forgetting to do something or forgetting to bring something vital. Sometimes the consequence can lead to spending an immense amount of our vacation time and effort rectifying a preventable mistake. So when planning for an exciting holiday, how do we ensure that it will turn out to be a good one?

how to prepare for overseas travel
Image Source: Citizen Services
1. Be Ready with All Your Documents

Make sure your passport is current around the time of your trip. Renew it at least eight months before, not six months and certainly not less than six months before expiration! Doing it at the last minute especially for an emergency will add to the stress.

Make sure that your current passport is in good condition with no tears or spills to make immigration doubt its authenticity. Go and have your passport changed if it looks dubious.

Scan or photograph and photocopy your passport information, your valid visas and your emergency contact information. After scanning or taking a photo, store a copy in every device and storage you have. Keep the photocopy in your check-in luggage to help verify your identity in case of loss and claim.

Print, scan and photocopy your tickets and vouchers. Although nowadays a soft copy has become acceptable, some hotels, airlines or tour operators may still require a hard copy.

2. Bring All Your Medicine

Bring an adequate supply of all your medicine---both emergency and maintenance. What you may buy over-the-counter in the Philippines might require a prescription abroad. Speaking of which, bring also the original prescription as some countries might consider it illegal to have prescribed medicine in your possession without sufficient proof.

how to prepare for overseas travel
Image Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer
3. Invest in Travel Insurance

Although we try to prepare ourselves for everything, some things can be and are beyond our control. We might get into an accident, get sick and be hospitalized. Investing in travel insurance can help ease the stress as it provides "where-to-go-for-help" type information and of course help in defraying if not covering our entire costs.

Travel insurance also covers missing flights, long hours of delay, and loss of baggage, etc.

4. Be Financially Ready

Bring at least two international credit cards and ATM cards. And if possible, bring more than one brand of credit card. Try to pay your bills before you leave so you won't reach your limit in the middle of your trip.

how to prepare for overseas travel
Image Source: Examiner
Bring different currencies:
  • Philippine peso for local expenses like terminal fee and food
  • The currency of the country you're going to. Even if you plan to exchange money there, you'd never know if you already need to spend upon arrival like subway tickets and food
  • US dollars if only because it is the world's currency. Some countries may not accept the Philippine peso for exchange.
Just remember to declare your currency when asked.

5. Bring Your Charger and Adaptor

Although you may not need to be reminded to bring your mobile phone, tablet or laptop, some of us might forget to bring the charger.

how to prepare for overseas travel
Image Source: Telegraph UK
If you travel abroad frequently or regularly, invest in a universal travel adaptor which has all the adaptors used in the world. You may have a regular, single adaptor now but it might not be the one that is used in your destination.

Doing these things might seem like a hassle but it will be worth it as it will be a bigger hassle if you neglect doing them, turning your dream vacation into a nightmare.

-The Paranoid Traveler

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