After having both a brilliant and somewhat unlucky year travelling abroad this year, I thought it’s about time that I pass on my experience to hopefully help you out when things don’t always go to plan…
1. Check, and then check again, that you have everything on you
There’s nothing worse than getting to their airport and realising you don’t have your passport or tickets. Yeah, I know what you’re thinking, that never happens to anyone, right? Well, unfortunately it does. One of my secondary school teachers was unable to go on the school trip after she suddenly realised she had no idea where her passport had gone to, and in the end, spent the week sitting in her lounge feeling a little sorry for herself. So, make sure, and then make sure again that you have everything you need to take away with you!
2. Get travel insurance well in advance
And don’t necessarily get the cheapest one – if things go wrong, you may actually have to use it! Ok, so £10 million cover may be a little over the top, but when you’re stuck in a foreign hospital unable to feel your legs due to the flesh-eating bacteria feasting inside of them (…yep, it happened to me), you want to be getting better, not worrying about insurance. So, get good insurance!
3. Consider getting your phone unlocked before jetting off
Let’s just say you get stuck abroad, and suddenly something unexpected happens either at home or with you. You need to call home, but you didn’t bother getting a SIM card abroad or a special abroad SIM card. That could end up costing up up to £1.80 a minute, easily adding up to the double or even triple figures (as it did for me). So give it a little thought – special travel cards such as that from Sim4Travel (it worked well for us!) – can easily save you a huge amount of money, and unlocking can usually be done at a pretty low cost, or even for free. Alternatively you may be able to pick up a very cheap SIM card whilst abroad, so give it a bit of research.
4. If something does go wrong, admit it
If you find things not exactly going to plan, you may need to simply admit it to yourself and go see a doctor. For me, I left it too late and had to go into hospital (twice). If you go earlier, however, you could save your holiday and spend more of it on the beach than in bed.
5. Keep your valuables in zipped pockets
It’s the easiest and one of the safest ways to look after your things. Being pick-pocketed can easily ruin a holiday, and it’s happened to a number of people I know, so safe yourself the hassle and keep it zipped away!
So, there’s my tips. They may not seem that helpful, but from my previous experience, are definitely worth thinking about. Obviously don’t forget about everything else that’s important when planning a holiday, but I hope it’s a start.