With summer just around the corner, it’s time to brush off the dust from your passport and book your next exotic or adventurous getaway. Traveling internationally for the first time is exciting and thrilling…until you arrive in a foreign city and realize you came completely unprepared. Before you travel abroad it is important to do some research beforehand as to not feel underprepared. Here is a list of things you need for your next international trip. Bon voyage!
Power Outlet Adaptors/Converters
If you are traveling out of the US, chances are you will need power outlet adaptors. Most countries outside of North America have different shaped power outlets; therefore you need a power converter so you can use all of your electronics. You can find them just about anywhere: Best Buy, Target, or Amazon.
Copies of Your Passport
No matter where you are going, always make sure to make paper copies of your passport. It’s always best to be safe (than sorry) and have an extra copy of your passport in case something happens to yours. Heaven forbid you get stranded on a different continent because you misplaced your passport.
When traveling to places that require a visa, like China or Russia, some hotels require you to surrender your passport in the hotel lobby. They require the actual passport, so it’s vital you have a copy of your passport already made just in case something unfortunate happens.
Tip #1: keep your passport in a safe place. If you’re staying at a hostel, it might be best if you carry your passport with you at all times. If you’re staying at a five-star hotel, always keep it in a locked safe. Either way, don’t make the mistake of misplacing it or leaving it behind at a restaurant or bar.
Foreign Currency (Cash)
While most major credit and debit cards are accepted out of the country, it is likely that your bank or credit card company charge foreign transaction fees. Those foreign transaction fees can add up if you plan on doing a lot of shopping or plan on eating out every meal. 4-6 weeks before you leave the country make sure you go to your bank and get some foreign currency. If you get the cash before you leave the country, the exchange rate will be much lower than if you exchange your currency when you get to an international airport. It’s always good to have $100/person of foreign currency just in case you find yourself in a place that only accepts cash, i.e. taxis, outdoor food markets, etc.
Tip #2:Before leaving out of the country, always call your bank or credit card companies and notify them of your travel plans. Chances are that if you don’t, they may be suspicious of fraudulent activity while you are out of town and may block your cards from working.
WhatsApp is a messaging Application that allows you to communicate, via text or call, with any person in the world via wifi for free. The benefit of this App is so you can talk with both friends and family members from home, and you can also chat with new friends you might meet while abroad!
Tip #3: Make sure you download the App and activate it before you leave the country. WhatsApp will send you text message verification code during set up so if you don’t have an international phone plan there will be no way to receive that message if you’re already in a foreign city.
This one is pretty self-explanatory. You can’t go out of town (foreign or local) without your proper medication. However, when you travel internationally always make sure to pack your medication in your purse or carry-on. If your luggage goes missing you don’t want to be without your essential prescription meds.
Have you ever traveled internationally? If so, where have you gone? What are some tips or examples of the things you can’t live without while abroad?