When traveling, always be prepared to have things stolen. Make advance photocopies of all of your important papers. You can even upload electronic scans of these documents for easy access while traveling. The local American embassy can assist you in contacting those at home who can wire you emergency funds or help in replacing your passport, but not much else.
Although you can buy most first aid tools on your various travels, it is still a good idea to have a first aid kit in your bag. You will be well-served to pack some essentials like bandages, soap, aspirin or other pain relievers, cold medicine, prescription medicine, etc. You never know where or when you will need these items, so it’s a safe bet to keep them with you just in case.
Create a list of the items you need to pack. Sometime well before your trip, at least a week or more, write down all of the items that you must pack. This will enable you to pack only the things that you really need and it can also ensure that you will not leave anything behind.
If your travel destination requires you to be vaccinated, be sure to take along verifications of your shots. This can be a lifesaver when leaving or entering a country, and immunizations can even be an issue when traveling from one city to another within one country. Without the certificate, authorities have no way of knowing that you’ve had the vaccination and may have to detain you for quarantine.
If you are traveling overseas, always have local currency in a variety of denominations. It is much easier to be ripped off by a taxi driver or shopkeeper if the smallest bill in your wallet represents a week’s or even month’s profit. Small change can sometimes be difficult to come by, so hang onto your coins when you get them.
If you don’t mind the inbox clutter, sign up for airline and hotel mailing lists when planning your trip. These lists will often tell you in advance about promotions or offer coupon codes – and they’re always free. These kinds of deals will go quickly, so seeing them right away gives you an edge when booking.
Scan your passport and email a copy to yourself. It rarely happens, but in the chance that you lose your passport during your travels, this will be a lifesaver. Getting a replacement passport can be a headache and having a copy can make the process much faster and less traumatic.
Know the rules for your airline’s baggage check policy. Some airlines will make you go and claim your baggage and recheck it for connecting flights. Be aware of this so you can schedule flights accordingly. You do not want to get caught running across an airport to catch a flight because of baggage!
If you’re going to be going on a road trip, bring an extra car key! You don’t want your trip ruined if the driver accidentally loses the only key to the car. So instead, get an extra key and keep it in your wallet so that you’ll always know where it is.
Local travel is a great way to see your own area, while still feeling you are getting away. You can stay in local inns and hotels for much less than traveling out of the area you live in. No matter where you live, it is possible to enjoy this area as a vacation spot and learn more about your own local history and landmarks.
Try to stay cool while traveling. Bodies may naturally heat up due to closed quarters, limited airflow and just being nervous about visiting a new place. Make use of overhead vents on airplanes, standing on the deck, if on a ship, or opening a window in a car. Sometimes you may be able to crack a window open on a bus as well, if you are unable to do so sit towards the front of the bus rather than at the back to avoid stale air.