For someone who loves to travel, and does so frequently, the process of preparing for it becomes somewhat of a habit. But for those of us who are travelling for the first time, there are certain things you need to do before you take the trip. Even more so if you are travelling abroad. The first time travelling experience can be a overwhelming one, particularly if you are travelling overseas. There a number of risks and unknown factors to account for like unfamiliar environment, people and language, the possibility of theft or credit card fraud and other similar circumstances.
Some easy steps for a first-time traveller to follow, while travelling internationally, include;
Arrange Your Travel Documents Well in Advance
Let’s face the fact – international travel just does not happen overnight, or without planning for that matter. Unless travelling is a part of your job or you travel for fun, the procedure for travelling overseas takes time. Even then you need to arrange certain things in advance including your passport, visa and tickets. For someone who is taking an international journey for the first time, all such things need to be planned and arranged in advance to give them a little room to book their tickets and plan the trip.
The first step is to get your passport in order. If you do not already have one, apply for it as soon as you can since it takes time to process. In case you are in a hurry, you can request expedited processing of your passport for a certain extra fee. While it takes time for your passport to arrive you can gather information about the visa process of the country you are travelling to. It is also important to note that for some countries you may not even need a visa or those that provide visa on arrival. You will have to do a little research about such requirements before you decide to travel someplace. The visa procedure can vary from country to country. Depending on their requirements they can ask for a number of different documents or information from you for the visa application. Once your passport arrives, you can start your visa application. The process of getting a visa is relatively short. In emergency cases, the embassy can even provide you with a visa on the spot.
Organise Your Trip Amenities
The next step is to book your trip details. If you are planning to travel abroad you must have a set budget. Decide on the number of days you need to stay overseas and the places you want to see. Experts advise you to book your air ticket from between 50-60 days in advance if you are looking to get them at reasonable rates. Also, keep an eye out for different discounts that are available – but beware of scams and fraudsters.
It is also wiser to book your accommodations before you arrive as well, since you would not know which hotels or resorts are nearer or the ones that are affordable for you according to your budget. Look up the different places you could stay, over the internet. Choose the ones that have lots of reviews – make sure to read those reviews as well to get an idea of the services available. Also, make sure that your hotel or resort is in a place where all the tourist attractions can be accessed easily. Otherwise, you would spend a lot of time and money, going to and from your hotel. Make sure to book a car service as well to make your commute in the city easier.
Be Prepared Financially
Although international travel is not as hard as it used to be, you still need to be prepared. Travellers, however, no longer need to carry cash or traveller’s cheques. But you need to check to see if your credit cards are valid and have not exceeded their limit. Inform your bank that you would be travelling abroad shortly – give them an exact date if possible. Banks generally increase monitoring on your transactions when you are travelling abroad. Apart from that, you yourself also need to be vigilant and read up on common frauds like identity theft or credit card fraud and find out how you can protect yourself.
Take Safety Measures for Your Overseas Trip
Travelling to a foreign destination always requires vigilance and care. But a few simple precautions can keep you from any big mishaps. Take care to protect your personal belongings and don’t take too many valuables with you on your trip. Usually, you just have to be aware of pickpocket thieves and petty criminals. Make sure to leave at least one credit card back at your hotel – but keep it in the hotel safe. Also, beware of credit card fraud and make sure to use ATMs linked to banks rather than the ones installed in at airports or shopping malls.