If you are planning a trip abroad, you probably feel a mix of excitement and apprehension. Seeing new places and experiencing new cultures is awesome in countless ways. But, being somewhere different can sometimes be a bit uncomfortable and frustrating. Not knowing what to expect may cause a bit of apprehension. Stepping outside our comfort zone is never easy, but that is where all the best stuff happens. Here are just a few tips to help you prepare for your trip.
Get Some Background
While you don’t need to learn every ounce of history about the country you are visiting, and become an expert on the culture, it would be a good idea to bone up a bit beyond just what you might be reading in your travel guidebook. This will serve you well in many ways.
First, knowing the history can give you a better context for evaluating what you see and experience. A greater understanding of the culture will lead to more enriching interactions. One of the main reasons we can feel so frustrated when we travel to another country is because we don’ understand what is happening and why things are done the way they are. The more you understand, the less annoyance you will feel.
Choose Health Insurance Wisely
There is no shortage of companies offering travel health insurance, and all policies are not created equal. Don’t just buy the first policy you come across. Carefully consider your needs, and read through policies thoroughly so you have a full understanding of what is covered and what isn’t. Assuming could end up being a very costly mistake should you actually require care on your trip.
Know certain activities may be excluded from coverage in certain parts of the world; you may need to purchase additional coverage if you plan on partaking in adventure-type activities such as ziplining or diving. Find out whether you would need to pay for treatment up front and apply for reimbursement or if a hospital would take payment directly through the carrier.
If you will be traveling in areas of the world where the healthcare may not be adequate to handle serious illness or injury, make sure you have coverage for evacuation ; there are many companies that can provide this service specifically such as VitalOne Medevac
Get Finances in Order
Get your money situation in order to ensure smooth sailing during the trip. Notify your credit card companies you will be traveling—in most cases, you can do this right online through your account. Don’t forget to do the same for your debit card. Even with the proper notifications, you may find your bank locks your card, leaving you unable to get cash from the ATM.
For this reason, it is important you get pin numbers for your credit cards—most assign these automatically when you get the card, and if you don’t remember it, you have to send away for a new one by mail, and this can take up to 10 business days. You cannot do this over the phone, either at home or abroad. This will come in handy if you have a problem with your bank card, and you cannot get a cash advance at the bank either because it is closed or you are not close to one.
Adhering to these three tips will help make for a smoother trip out of the country.