An international journey is an exciting prospect to not just take in the sights but also explore new cultures, cuisines, languages and lifestyles. Travel broadens our horizons, and a trip abroad is an opportunity to see how the other half of the world lives.
While it is easy to get carried away with the idea of a foreign trip, planning an international trip takes a lot of effort. It is important to take the right steps to ensure that you have a hassle-free vacation. Missing flights, baggage getting misplaced, hotel reservations getting cancelled, and unfamiliarity with the local language or customs can put a dampener on your holiday.
Here are some tips for planning a worry-free international trip:
Prepare an Itinerary and budget
Vacations are a time to unwind and relax. And the first step towards achieving this is by planning your trip in advance. You might want to outsource it to a travel agent or plan it yourself with the help of travel aggregators. The goal is to get cheap international trip packages.
In case you are doing it independently, then make sure to read the reviews for hotels, modes of transport and shopping destinations before making any pre-bookings. This will save your hard-earned money whilst ensuring a good experience. Make a list of the tourist places along with their visiting hours to avoid losing time.
It will be helpful to set aside a budget for your trip and break them into must-haves or good-to-haves. This way, you can prioritise the various experiences that you definitely want to have and keep on standby those that can be excluded due to time and budget restrictions.
Documentation and Bookings
It is advisable to carry photocopies of your passport rather than carting the physical copy at the risk of losing it. Also, take printouts of any pre-bookings and reservations apart from downloading them on your smartphone. Though most countries offer wi-fi in public places, having a hard copy or downloading it on your phone in advance will prevent any embarrassment or panic in case of poor internet connectivity.
Check your mobile data and plan. If need be, consider buying a local prepaid sim card as it is cheaper than activating international roaming. Wherever possible, use the public wi-fi for non-confidential surfing.
While booking flight tickets, make sure to check the time zones and select flights accordingly. Also, it is advisable to book directly with the airlines in order to avoid any hassles in the event of flights getting cancelled or missed. Now is the time to redeem the loyalty points from your cards to avail of discounts, lounge access and other offerings.
Research the Country of Visit
It is always helpful to read up about your destination in advance. This will enable you to pack the right kind of clothes, accessories for gadgets, currencies and the likes. Many countries have dress codes for various tourist places. Doing homework on the local customs and dos and don’ts will save you any embarrassment later. Find out about the local travel options. These are a great way to interact with locals and soak in the sights and smells of the place.
Many countries have hostels or homestays. These can be cheaper than typical hotels and also an interesting way to explore the destination. If you have any dietary preferences, you can check out restaurants that serve food as per your needs. In case you get food allergies, having a medical travel insurance plan can be really helpful in tackling the situation. So, don’t forget to get one.
This way, you will not have to spend time figuring out your meals. Lastly, if you are travelling to a country where English is not widely spoken, then it will be helpful to put together a list of words and phrases in the local language in order to avoid miscommunication.
Always keep the contact numbers and addresses of your embassy, local tourism office and hotel handy so that you can seek help in case of any mishap. You can always check with the hotel reception or concierge in case of any doubt, and they will guide you appropriately.
Relax and Rejuvenate
The purpose of a vacation is to help you unwind and de-stress. It does not help to carry your work with you on your holiday. Nor is it relaxing to have a crammed-up itinerary with no breathing space. Try and keep some room in your schedule for any unplanned experiences or activities. This will not only open up newer facets of the country but also make for a great memory.
Also, if anything unforeseen happens, like falling sick or getting injured, having a travel medical insurance plan can be really helpful.
Protect Yourself With an International Travel Insurance with Medical Coverage
Itinerary – check. Tickets – check. Reservations – Check. But what about travel insurance? Some of the best trips can go awry if you are faced with any untoward incident in an unknown land. Most important on your list of travel must-haves should be an international travel insurance policy that covers both medical and non-medical emergencies. It is advisable to go through the various international travel insurance policies available and select the one that best suits your requirement. If your company has a travel desk, then it will be helpful to look up their corporate travel policy.
Vacations are a great way to recharge your batteries and come back refreshed. And the experience is further enhanced when you have a seamless trip. To plan a worry-free international trip and ensure a memorable vacation, make sure to follow the tips given above. Learn some commonly-used phrases, respect the local customs, carry your medicines and prescriptions and be open to an immersive experience. Happy Vacationing!