Top Seven International Travel Tips

| May 31, 2011

With the summer travel season coming up soon, we’ve put together our top seven international travel tips that we thought you might want to pass along to your family and friends. Hope this tips will come in handy.

1. Check your passport: At least six months in advance, take a look at your passport. Depending on your destination, it might need to be valid for a certain number of months and/or have a certain number of unused pages. Go to the U.S. Department of State travel information website and enter the countries you will be visiting to check entry requirements. Don’t forget to find out whether you need a visa!

2. Prepare your prescription drugs for transport: To be on the safe side, always carry your meds with you onboard. Never pack critical meds in your checked baggage, in case it becomes delayed, lost or stolen. Keep the drugs in their original containers and, if possible, bring copies of your medication prescription with the generic names with you.

3. Purchase medical and travel assistance services: You have undoubtedly planned for this trip for some time and you don’t want it to be affected by a medical situation that you don’t know how to handle. On Call International provides peace of mind for travelers because once you sign up, you get access to a 24-hour global response center to find doctors in your travel area and a 24-hour English-speaking nurse helpline to help identify symptoms. Of course, if something major happens, they also provide medical evacuation to the hospital of your choice, regardless of medical necessity. Check your existing medical insurance and if it doesn’t cover international medical evacuations, consider purchasing an affordable travel assistance membership from On Call.

4. Get your shots if they’re needed: Not all international travel requires inoculation against endemic diseases, and some inoculations are optional. Check out required inoculations on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website by clicking on the countries you will be visiting.

5. Plan activities in advance: Quite often, people traveling together have agreed on a country, countries or cities, but they haven’t planned out their day-to-day schedule. Things can get a bit hairy without at least a list of activities within each city and knowing the general interests of all the travelers in your group—even if it’s just two. For example, if one person is a foodie and one is not, make a plan for how you’ll handle meals. Likewise, if one person is an arty type and could spend all day, every day in the museums and one is not, build that difference into the activity schedule.

6. Pack sparsely and appropriately for the destination: Some people love packing and taking as little as possible. If you are not that kind of person, put everything you want to take on your bed and then put half of it back in the closet. Here are two rules: 1) Aim for one, basic color theme and 2) Wear the same things over and over and over because no one cares. Also, think about the customs of the country and don’t bring anything too flamboyant if you are going to a country with a conservative culture.

7. Practice mindful eating and drinking: If you’re traveling to a location where food safety might be questionable, be mindful about what you are eating. Be particularly aware of food that has not been refrigerated properly. If the country you are visiting doesn’t have potable water, drink bottled water, request no ice in your drinks, and try to stick with cooked foods. Peeled fruits are probably OK, but salad greens are probably not OK.

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Category: Travel

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