So, you’ve decided to take that vacation abroad that you’ve always wanted. Good for you!
The thing is, one of the first things you’ll notice is that there are tons of preparations to make before you get on that plane! Never fear, though, because we’re here to make it a little easier on you.
First, why is it so important for you to have an international travel checklist?
Because for international travel, there will be more items on your to-do list than if you were traveling domestically.
There can be more paperwork and even additional items that you’ll need sometimes just for convenience, such as adaptors for electrical outlets and others.
If you make a checklist well in advance of your travel date, it is much less likely you’ll end up forgetting something important and therefore, your trip will go much more smoothly.
After all, you don’t want to get to another country and discover you forgot something you consider important.
To make sure this doesn’t happen, below are some tips to keep in mind before you leave. Plus, you can use this ready-made travel checklist that you can edit and customize easily.
How to Make the Perfect International Travel Checklist
1. Determine Which Documents You’ll Need
Each country has its own requirements for entry, but regardless of where you’re going, you can count on needing a passport, visa, and a government-issued driver’s license or ID card.
If you’re working with a travel agency, they’ll know exactly what you need, but it’s also good to check online to see if the country you’re visiting has any new requirements.
This information can always be found online on the country’s main website, which is always going to be updated.
As soon as possible, it’s a great idea to go ahead and get all of these documents updated and ready to go. Keeping them all in the same place also makes the process more convenient.
2. Consider Purchasing Travel Insurance
Regardless of how much in advance you’ve prepared your travel plans, things can go wrong quickly. Even if you’re positive your plans won’t change, they often do anyway.
For that reason, always take out travel insurance because if you don’t, you can be out of a lot of money.
In fact, this is one of the most important travel tips to follow because emergencies can and do happen every single day. With travel insurance, you’ll relieve the stress associated with wondering “what if” the entire time.
3. Research the Weather and Climate of the Area Where You’ll Travel
When you travel, you need to know before you get to your destination exactly how to dress once you get there, which means you’ll need to know what the weather will be like the entire time you’re there.
Fortunately, this is simple information to find because you can usually locate a weather forecast somewhere online.
Another important tip when you’re traveling is to check out the forecast for the entire time you’ll be there, just in case the weather changes just for a day or two.
Don’t just pay attention to what the weather will be like for the first few days you’re there and assume that’s how it’ll stay.
4. Plan Out the Entire Travel Route, and Remember Time Differences
Plan out your travel route in detail, day by day, and include a basic list of what you plan to do each day.
A good day planner is one way to keep track of everything and make notes for each day so you’ll be as prepared as possible for what you have planned.
Pay attention to time differences and make notes of what each of the activities is going to cost you if you have that information.
You don’t have to list every single detail of your activities because things can change, but you should have a general idea of what you’re going to do every day that you’re away.
5. Make a Comprehensive List of Everything You Need
For this list, it’s a good idea to start as early as possible. Each time you think about your upcoming trip, you’re likely to think of something else you’d like to pack.
If you wait until the last minute, it’s more likely you’ll end up forgetting something important.
Remember the most important things that you might not be able to purchase once you get there, such as chargers, adaptors for electrical outlets, etc.
It’s also a good idea to bring pens, envelopes, and a lanyard that is attached to a small plastic purse that you can use to store your most important documents and maybe even your credit cards.
6. Try to Pack as Lightly as You Can
Okay, this one is a little tough as compared to the other items on your travel checklist, but it can be easier than you think. As a general rule, you should keep 5-7 days’ worth of clothing in your suitcase and no more.
Remember that most hotels have laundry rooms that allow you to wash your clothes whenever you like, and you should be prepared to use them.
It’s always best if you bring one large suitcase and a smaller one for toiletries, and nothing else.
The fewer bags you bring, the easier it will be when you’re rushing through airports or to your next hotel. The lighter you pack, the easier the entire trip will be for you.
7. Bring a First Aid Kit and Some Cash for Emergencies
Emergencies can and do happen when you travel, so a good first aid kit can be a true miracle worker. It doesn’t have to be a large kit, but it should include the basics.
While most people these days pay for everything with a debit or credit card, it’s good to have some cash on hand so you can tip the people in the airport or keep it around for emergencies.
These two tips alone are worth remembering, even if you forget some of the others.
Preparing for emergencies when you’re traveling abroad is important, and some extra cash and a first aid kit can make a big difference when you travel.
8. Download Offline Versions of the Apps You Use Frequently
We all love our apps, but make sure you take some of your favorite ones and convert them into offline versions.
After all, you never know when you might have trouble with online connections as you travel, which is more common than you might think.
If your favorite apps are already in the form of offline apps, they’ll be a lot easier to use as you travel from one place to another.
This is especially helpful when you plan to travel to many different countries or different areas of one country because you might be traveling through areas where there is either a bad connection or no connection at all.
9. Make Sure Your Bills are Up-to-Date and Current
This is something important but also easy to forget. If you’re going to be in another country on the twentieth of the month but you have a bill due that day, go ahead and pay it before you leave.
If you’ll be gone for several weeks, it’s crucial that you pay all of the bills that are due during that time.
You certainly don’t want to return home and find out that your Internet has been cut off or you no longer have electricity.
This is also important because it saves you a ton of money in late fees, not to mention the reconnection fees you might have to pay.
10. Make Sure Your Home is Locked and Secured Properly
If you have a security system, this won’t be a problem. Still, you’ll want to make sure all windows and doors are locked and secure before you leave.
You might also want to change the contact person they call when there’s a problem because calling you might be difficult.
Again, make sure your bill is paid up so there are no problems with your coverage continuing while you’re gone.
You can also ask neighbors or friends to keep an eye on your house while you’re away, which is especially important if you do not have a security system of some type.
The key thing to remember is to make sure your home is as secure as possible before you leave for your trip.
Going overseas for your next vacation can get overwhelming when there are so many things that need to be done before traveling.
But, creating your international travel checklist will help you feel less stressed about your upcoming travels and give you some more free time while getting ready.
Remember that the sooner you start making your list, the more likely it is that you’ll end up with a list that includes everything important to you.
Different people have different needs, and the more complete your own list is, the more you’ll be able to enjoy your vacation abroad.
Preparation is key when you wish to plan and organize your next trip, and this checklist should be a great start for you.
While the tips mentioned above are important ones, you should think of this list like the one you can edit and personalize so it’s perfect for your needs.
If you feel like we’ve overlooked something crucial, you can feel free to let us know.
If you want to learn more, check out our other interesting articles.
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