5 Things to Keep in Mind Before Taking That Trip


We’ll admit it. Trav­el insur­ance isn’t a par­tic­u­lar­ly sat­is­fy­ing pur­chase. Most of us would love to cross our fin­gers and bank on the hope that our trav­els will go smooth­ly and as expect­ed. But life hap­pens. Whether it’s find­ing out you have to can­cel weeks before you go, or need­ing emer­gency med­ical atten­tion dur­ing a trip, it’s best to pur­sue peace of mind and know that you (and your bank account) will be cov­ered if and when the unan­tic­i­pat­ed hap­pens. Get an instant, no has­sle quote from our best in class part­ner, World Nomads.

Get Ahead of Your Pack­ing List
When you trav­el, some­times all that you’ve got con­trol over is what you’re phys­i­cal­ly car­ry­ing. While that can be a free­ing feel­ing, it also speaks to how much your pack­ing choic­es mat­ter. Feel­ing pre­pared with the right cloth­ing and gear choic­es mean you’ve got the best chance at being phys­i­cal­ly and cul­tur­al­ly com­fort­able. Pack breath­able lay­ers, espe­cial­ly for warmer cli­mates. Com­fort­able, prac­ti­cal shoes and gar­ments that can tran­si­tion from a day’s activ­i­ties to a night out on the town are ide­al. For itin­er­aries on the move, it will be hard to get laun­dry done. Con­sid­er quick­er dry­ing fab­rics in case you have to do some sink wash­ing and overnight air drying.

Check Visa Require­ments and Vac­ci­na­tion Recommendations
There’s no ques­tion you’ll need a pass­port if your trav­els will be tak­ing you out of the U.S., but visa require­ments will vary from coun­try to coun­try. Some will grant you an auto­mat­ic tourist visa upon entry, oth­ers will require that you pay a fee in cus­toms, and for some coun­tries, you’ll have to apply for and secure a tourist visa before you go. As for vac­ci­na­tions, some are high­ly rec­om­mend­ed in cer­tain high­er risk regions of the world. Bet­ter safe than sor­ry here, as noth­ing will bum you out more than get­ting typhoid on vaca­tion. Your tour oper­a­tor will be a great resource for this kind of infor­ma­tion, but always be sure to dou­ble-check with the U.S. State Depart­ment on Trav­el: https://www.state.gov/travel/ as well as the U.S. Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol (CDC): https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/.

Learn Basic For­eign Lan­guage Phrases
For­tu­nate­ly for the Eng­lish speak­er, you can get by with­out know­ing the local lan­guage in many coun­tries around the world. But if you’re trav­el­ing to a des­ti­na­tion where Eng­lish is not a native or pre­dom­i­nant lan­guage, it’s best prac­tice to bring a trav­el­er’s phrase book — no need to bring a full dic­tio­nary unless you’re plan­ning to attend lan­guage school or stay abroad for months on end. Though you prob­a­bly won’t be able to car­ry on any pro­found con­ver­sa­tions, you’ll be stoked for the abil­i­ty to com­mu­ni­cate about the basics. And most impor­tant­ly, your hum­ble attempts will most like­ly be appre­ci­at­ed by the locals.

Bud­get for Fun Extras
Many tour pack­ages include at least accom­mo­da­tions, and some guid­ing, meals, and activ­i­ties. But you don’t want to have to turn down scu­ba div­ing in Cuba sole­ly because you failed to bring $50 of extra cash. Always plan for more. While trav­el­ing, you’re often some­where you may nev­er again be in your life, which is not the time to deny your­self the right to that spon­ta­neous splurge.