Travel is a great metaphor for life. The more you prep and plan, the easier it will be. Sure, there are those who prefer to be more spontaneous. I’m just saying that spontaneity is WAY MORE FUN when you have a way of identifying yourself at the Australian consulate after your luggage has been stolen/destroyed/used to start a spontaneous beach bonfire.
Travel hard, travel smart, just travel…is my motto.
WATCH: Are we really more emotional on planes? (Post continues…)
TOP 10 TRAVEL TIPS FOR SMART AND SPONTANEOUS FUN
1. Leave a copy of your itinerary and important papers with someone
Before even leaving for your destination print off a copy of all of your travel documents including a copy of your passport and leave it with someone responsible. You never know when you’ll need someone to help you identify yourself and it’s a good idea to ensure someone knows where you are meant to be.
Include a list of your airbnbs, hotels and people you are planning to visit.
Better still, you can register your travel plans with Smart Traveller, set up by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
2. Check travel warnings BEFORE you arrive
You probably want to know if you are headed into a Zika Virus zone, particularly if you are pregnant or trying to get pregnant. Smart Traveller lists all the relevant travel warnings for those who are headed overseas and while you may not be willing to change your travel plans, at least you can mentally prepare yourself.
Just don’t tell your parents. They will FREAK OUT!
3. Good travel insurance is not optional
Saving money on travel insurance is not a good idea. My stepson didn’t even have travel insurance when he went overseas on a snowboarding holiday and ended up having a pretty bad fall (because he likes to hurtle down the steepest mountains possible) and to this day his wrist is a bit dodgy. If he had good travel insurance he could have had it seen to without coping a bill worth thousands of dollars.
Do your homework when choosing a travel insurance policy. It’s the best money you will spend ahead of your trip. Thankfully, Choice has rated them all for you.
4. A small medical/emergency kit
Band aids, antiseptic cream/powder, cotton balls, cotton buds…all items you won’t realise you need until you fall over or get a bug stuck up your nose. You can buy really good first aid kits from camping stores and when getting your shots discuss with your doctor what other items you should include.
Even if the bandaids are only for shoes that look good but remove a layer of skin from your heels, you’ll be so happy you brought them. Just check before travelling that you are allowed to bring all of your first aid items onto a plane and into the country. They may not allow tweezers or nail clippers but you can bring a nail file.