Traveling abroad is a great luxury, but it can require a lot of organization and planning to run smoothly. Before heading across international borders, follow these five foolproof tips to ensure your trip is fun, easy, and safe.
Learn the Language
Acquaint yourself with the local language of the country you’re visiting. English is commonly spoken around the world, but learning a few basic foreign words and phrases will help you out. Further, you can’t expect everyone to accommodate your linguistic needs immediately. Find a phrasebook or use a language-learning app to help you along. Even learning ‘Do you speak English?’ is a great place to start, as well as please, thank you, and basic greetings.
Before your trip, check the currency exchange rates and, if necessary, purchase foreign currency. Many travelers choose to buy cash before their trip. This is a convenient way to handle your purchases abroad, but be wary of carrying too much cash around. Store it in your hotel room safe if you have one.
Another good idea is to carry a prepaid cash card, which you can top off online with a fixed exchange rate. These cards usually allow you to withdraw cash from local ATMs at no charge. Withdrawing cash as needed or paying through the card are safe and convenient ways to manage your money abroad.
Understand the Culture
As a traveler, it’s important to be mindful of your chosen destination’s culture. Do some research prior to your trip to find out if you need to observe any customs or traditions as a traveler. Visiting Middle Eastern or Muslim countries, for instance, might require you to wear more modest clothing. Many temples require you to remove your shoes before entering, and some hand gestures commonly used in Western countries are frowned upon by others. Arming yourself with this information saves embarrassment, and simple efforts to respect different cultures can go a long way.
Plan Out Your Travel
Plan your routes at your destination, if possible. Having an idea of how to get from the airport to your hotel will save you time when you arrive for your holiday. Pre-book any hire cars to avoid confusion and frustration on your arrival. Depending on your arrival time, you might want to book an airport transfer by coach or private taxi rather than navigating foreign trains, buses, or metros.
Be Prepared for Medical Emergencies
Not all trips are incident-free. Take any medication you might need with you, and pack extra, just in case. Bring a simple first-aid kit along for minor injuries or illnesses, and know where the local hospital is. Having additional protection for your travels gives you great peace of mind. For instance, a membership with MedjetHorizon can ease the burden of arranging medical transport in areas of the world prone to earthquakes or other natural disasters.
Staying on top of this information and having adequate travel security services can give you greater protection abroad should anything occur.
This article is published in collaboration with MedjetHorizon. All words supplied; photos via Pixabay.