Saturday, June 25, 2016

Travel Tip: Checklist to Prepare for International Trips!

(Originally published on The Table Less Traveled Newsletter, January 2016)

The last few days before I leave for an international trip are always a blur...there are so many things to do and so little time! To help my guests prepare well in advance I've created a quick checklist to help smooth out all the pre-trip "to-do's" from getting your official documents ready to downloading books for the plane!

You can download the list from our website for easy printing.

Pre-Departure Checklist

Months before you go

  • Check your passport expiration date. For U.S. Citizens - passports must be valid for six (6) months after the return of your journey and should also have sufficient blank pages for visas and immigration stamps.
  • Check the U.S. Department of State's website for country-specific information like visa requirements, local laws, and travel alerts & warnings.
  • Visit a doctor or travel pharmacist 4-6 weeks prior to departure. Give your doctor your itinerary and history of vaccines. Ask for routine vaccinations and prescriptions as necessary (including a backup supply of antibiotics). For more information visit the CDC.
  • Purchase travel insurance and trip cancellation protection.

Weeks before you go

  • Purchase baggage or clothing needed for packing. 
  • Register for the U.S. Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
  • If you are planning on using your cell phone, talk with your carrier to find out the best international plans that will suit your needs. 
  • Designate and alert an emergency contact about your travel plans.

Days before you go

  • Review the local weather.
  • Notify your banks of your travel plans and itinerary for international use of your credit cards and ATM cards.
  • Make two (2) copies of your important documents such as passports, credit cards, and driver licenses. Leave one copy with your emergency contact and store another copy in a safe place in your luggage (separate from the actual documents). 
  • Pick up any prescription drugs and necessary medicines. 
  • Download books/shows/movies to electronic devices.

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