So the day has come…YOU’RE GOING ABROAD! As the excitement sets in, you race to get ready, pack your bags for the trip and leave for the airport. As you arrive, panic sets in…have you got everything you need? Have you forgotten anything important? Where’s your passport?! To ensure you have a stress-free start to your amazing travel experience, here is my essential travel checklist to help make sure that you don’t forget anything! I hope it helps!
The most important item to remember when going abroad is your passport. Without this, you won’t be able to go on your travels so make sure to pack this the night before! Double check in the morning too for peace of mind.
Some countries may require a visa. You will have to check on your countries travel guide website to check whether you will need one. For example, in the UK, you can check the entry requirements for each country via https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice. Make sure you apply for your visa well in advance to ensure that the document will be ready before you travel.
2) Additional documents
Personally, an important and arguably, essential document to take with you when you travel is travel insurance. This will cover you for your time abroad and any additional sports activities, such as water sports, that you might want to do. It will normally include medical expenses, accidents, theft, loss and other categories. There are a diverse range of travel insurance options available so make sure you check them all out first before you buy so you can choose the right one for you.
If you are from the UK, EEA (European Economic Area) or Switzerland, you can apply for an EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) for free. This is additional to your insurance and will cover you if you are unwell or require medical attention. The charge may be free or come at a reduced price so it is always handy to have one.
3) Flight details
There are websites that compare a range of airlines so that you can buy the cheapest and most efficient one for you! My personal favourite is SkyScanner and I have used it many times! Once booked, note down your flight details or print the details off. Often, airlines will allow you to check-in online 24 hours before you fly for free. This option is normally easier and makes your airport experience a little more stress-free!
Before you travel, it is beneficial to exchange your money to the currency of the country which you will be visiting. If you do forget, you can always buy at the airport, however, generally this works out to be a more expensive option. Alternatively, you can use a cash machine abroad and withdraw money but often, you will incur charges based on the country and the cash machine specific bank.
TIP: When exchanging money at home, use travel money comparison websites for an easy comparison of suppliers to see which one is the cheapest! Please note that sometimes online offers do vary from instore offers.
For a stress-free experience, remember to book your accommodation before you travel. When you land, you will know exactly where to go and can arrange your transport to your accommodation. Hotels and hostels are very popular options as well as AirBnB apartments. Be sure to check out reviews before you book as other traveller’s experience can help you make an informed decision about where you want to stay. Once booked, make sure to print any additional documents and reservations or save them on your phone so that check-in is quick and easy!
6) Clothes and toiletries
Another essential is clothes and toiletries. Check the weather before you go so you can pack seasonal clothing and accessories. Toiletries are useful to take as well but make sure to check the airlines flight restrictions on toiletries and what you can and cannot take. If you forget to pack any items, remember that, more often than not, you will be able to buy items when you are abroad so don’t worry!
Last but by no means least, remember to take your phone, tablet, camera or laptop with you to capture all the amazing memories and stay connected with the world! Don’t forget to bring chargers and charger adapters too!
I hope that this checklist has helped you have a stress-free experience when travelling! If you want to be super prepared before you go, use social media e.g. Facebook groups, Instagram and Twitter to connect with fellow travellers and see how they found their experience to that country. It is also a great way to make friends before you travel and get some more advice! I hope you have a great experience wherever you are planning on travelling! x