Although traveling nationally or internationally gives you the opportunity to see the world and interact with people of all backgrounds, it can also be a hassle, an expense or even a danger. However, there are ways to make your trip less stressful and more enjoyable, whether it’s for business or pleasure. All you need to do is follow these simple tips.
Before leaving on a trip, it is vital to make sure that all of your documentation is up to date. This includes identification such as your driver’s license and passport, any necessary immunization or medical records, and credit or bank cards. This way you will not run into any problems when making purchases or during your travels regarding non-matching ID.
Don’t be afraid to cash in your airline miles. Many travelers let their miles accumulate and never bother using them. Reap the rewards of your traveling and spend the miles you’ve earned! Miles have expiration dates, so be sure to use them before they expire. Often you can use them on items other than travel, so check out your options and get to spending.
When traveling on an airplane, always be sure to have everything you would need for the next day in your carry on. Since your carry on is always with you, you can be sure that if they will loose your luggage that you will be able to get by on the next day. In most cases, airlines should have your luggage to you by then.
You have several insurance options when traveling. When you book a trip, you should decide, first of all, what kind of traveler you are and your appetite for risk, and then determine which policy or policies you should purchase to cover contingencies on your trip. The sooner you make these insurance decisions after booking, the less money you will pay and the more options you will have. You may buy trip cancellation insurance, a popular option; insurance against loss of your luggage; insurance against medical emergencies; or even weather contingency insurance.
Driving far in a car means consistently changing radio stations for ones that a clear. To solve this, make CDs or tapes with all of the group’s favorite songs so you can jam happily without distracting yourself by trying to find a clear station while driving. This also allows for you guys to listen to music non-stop rather then sit and wait for commercials to end.
If you have questions about the hotel, the best time to call is around midnight. The people working the desk most likely aren’t busy and will be able to give you their full attention. If you call during the day, most likely they’ve got people there in person and others calling on the phone to distract them.
When packing for a long trip, limit yourself to about two colors of clothing. This will help to ensure that everything you bring to wear on your trip will match with everything else. It will also limit the number of shoes and accessories you need to match with your outfits.
When staying in a hotel room, make sure to lock any valuables such as jewelry or electronics in the in-room safe. If there is no safe in your room, ask at the front desk and the hotel can usually put them in a safe there. If you don’t secure your valuables, the hotel is not liable if they are stolen from your room.
If you and a group of family or friends are traveling by car, bring a walkie talkie wherever you go. Cell phones need to have a cell tower in order to work properly. Walkie talkies only need each other, making them more beneficial than the phones when you are traveling in rural areas that might not have cell phone coverage.
When you’re planning a vacation, always take the weather into consideration. Be sure to always check forecasts for any inclement weather that is headed your way. Nothing can ruin the best travel plans quicker than ending up on a freezing beach in Florida or a sweltering ski slope in Colorado.
If you will be on vacation for a week or longer, double check if there will be a laundry facility on site. If there will be then you can pack a little lighter and be able to throw in a load of laundry instead when you are there. Since airlines do charge for overweight luggage, it is nice to try to pack lighter.
It is important to plan your plan for a rental car beforehand. This is because the price of a rental car will increase rapidly if you wait until last minute. Also, when you arrive at the rental car company, there is a chance that they may be sold out of cars.
When renting a car for a trip, try renting one from a location away from the airport. Many times the car rentals at an airline include items like taxes and additional fees that can really jack up their prices. Usually the off-airport car rentals will send a shuttle to pick you up in, which may be faster and more convenient.
Join the loyalty program at the hotel you are staying at. Even if you are only staying that one time, it will provide you with added amenities that you would likely be charged for otherwise. Read the fine print when signing up for these because there may be a hidden charge in some cases.
When traveling with children, bring along a few over the counter medications. Even if everyone is healthy when you leave, a stomach bug or headache can hit at any time. Finding a spot to buy medications while you’re traveling can be difficult, and middle of the night sicknesses can make everyone grumpy.
As you can see, there are a number of ways to make traveling more pleasurable, as well as safer and less costly. Many of these tips come from seasoned travelers who have learned through experience. Use their knowledge to your advantage the next time you have to plan a trip, whether it’s in a neighboring city or another country.