I’ve learned quite a few tips during my international travels and I’m happy to pass them on. Here are my top tips to consider before traveling internationally.
Traveling internationally is high on my passion list. I love experiencing the culture, the people, and the foods of countries around the globe.
With different countries comes different laws and it’s important that you are familiar with some of them before you travel.
Top Tips To Consider When Traveling Internationally
Before you set out on your international journey, I recommend checking with your health insurance to see if you’re covered internationally.
Let’s face it emergencies can happen anywhere and you don’t want to find out the hard way that you have to pay cash for medical services. This could end up being a huge unexpected expense.
I recommend getting extra insurance that will cover you in case of any kind of emergency. I highly recommend World Nomads. They offer very reasonable prices and their support is quick and fantastic.
If you have prescription medication be sure to check if your medication is allowed in the country you’re traveling to.
There are places that may have restrictions on a particular medication or it may even be illegal. There have been cases where people have traveled to places where their medication was illegal and it landed them in jail.
Also, check to see if you need a copy of a prescription from the doctor prescribing the medication as well. You can check with the foreign embassy of the country you are visiting or even passing through so you don’t have to deal with possible delays.
Be sure to pack your medications in your carry on bag and keep them in their original containers. You definitely don’t want to pack them in your checked suitcase and have your luggage get lost.
There are some items that the CDC does recommend you travel with.
Some over the counter medications may not be available in other countries or if they are they are not guaranteed to meet U.S. standards. There is also the potential that it could be counterfeit. This is a major issue in developing countries.
Some things that the CDC recommends are Imodium or Pepto-Bismol, motion sickness medicine, cough drops, and cough suppressants, pain and fever medication.
Here is a link to other things that are recommended by the CDC; https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/page/pack-smart.
I recommend doing your due diligence with regard to climate.
After you determine what time of year you will be going to a particular international country, find out what their weather is like during the time you will be visiting.
Contact the hotel through their social media and ask them directly. Most are happy to pass on that information. There’s nothing worse than being unprepared for the weather by bringing clothes that are the wrong weight and being forced to purchase items that you didn’t count on.
I’m a big fan of taking money out of an ATM while I’m in the country. I alert my bank of my intended dates of travel and I take money out as I need it. Depending on your bank, fees can cost more, however, I prefer to do it this way rather than carrying a large amount of cash.
You can also exchange your currency at airports, train stations, and even some border crossings will have money-changing booths that are happy to take your cash and convert it to another currency, or they’ll charge your debit or credit card and give you foreign currency in return.
Airport money changers are especially notorious for charging high fees and markups so be wary of this.
If you need a little emergency cash in your pocket, use this option as a last resort.
Cell Phones & SIM Cards
The cheapest way to communicate when traveling is to buy SIM cards in each country you visit.
The advantage to this option is that you’ll have a local number you can give to locals, family, and anyone you meet while you’re traveling within that country.
If you’re traveling to Southeast Asia or South America, purchasing a SIM card is remarkably cheap as is very easy to refill your minutes by purchasing “top-up” cards at convenience stores.
SIM cards and service cost more in Western Europe and Australia but are still the best option. There are no contracts or commitments and can often be reused over and over if you are a frequent visitor to a particular country.
I have lots of packing tips for you and those can be found here. But one tip I will give you in this post is not to make the mistake of overpacking.
There’s nothing worse than trying to run through a train station, through an airport, or after a taxi with two giant suitcases, a large carryon and a backpack weighing you down. Less is more, take it from this frequent world traveler!
Traveling abroad does not have to be overwhelming. In fact, it should be exciting and adventurous. Spending a few hours of preparation and research before your travels will save you hours of delay and massive headaches.
If you would like more tips or interacting with like-minded travelers join my Facebook group Seriously Travel Tribe. It’s a wonderful community filled with people who love travel and living a life of limitless possibilities.