Going overseas this year? How to make the important preparations

Traveling abroad is one of the most exciting things you can do in your whole life. If you’re an experienced world traveler, you already know this to be true. But if you haven’t ventured beyond your national borders before, there is so much awaiting you! To get the most out of your journeys, you’ll have to do some work ahead of time. These preparations will make your travels smooth and uneventful (except for the events you want to take part in, of course). Here are some things to prepare for if you have not done so already.

Vaccinations. Many countries require visitors to be immunized and vaccinated before entering the country. You should, of course, follow these requirements, but you should also do a little extra research. Is there a disease you are likely to catch in the country that you will be visiting, which you aren’t required to be immunized against? If so, save yourself some future suffering and get the vaccine.

Communication With People Back Home. You may be able to communicate adequately with email and your smartphone. But sometimes smartphones are lost or stolen, and sometimes there is no WiFi to be found. In such a predicament, you’ll be glad you packed EnjoyPrepaid phone cards, which will work to call home anywhere you can find a phone.

Local Customs. In some countries, everyday practices you enjoy at home may be considered offensive. Find internet forums where people from your country talk about their experiences in the country you want to go to. Expat forums can be especially helpful. You’ll be able to adjust your behavior to local norms and have a much better time without seeming overly out of place.

Have a Plan for Food and Drink. In many parts of the world, your sensitive Western tummy will be turned inside out after a sip of the local water. Have a plan for how to stay hydrated and fed without getting sick. Bring along water purification tablets, and read up on methods people use to keep from accidentally ingesting something that will make them sick.

Transportation. Not all foreign transportation is friendly to visitors. It’s important for you to research in advance the transportation methods you’ll need to rely on, particularly those taking you to and from the airport. Don’t be ripped off by transportation options meant to target unsuspecting tourists.

Local Contacts. In most places in the world, you can meet cool local people through the Couch Surfer’s network, or similar programs. If you are feeling at all social (and even if you are not) you will benefit greatly from the generosity and hospitality of local people. You may see an entirely different side of the country than you would by yourself.

By preparing for these and similar circumstances, you’ll be much more ready to react to what life throws at you during challenging international travel. Work hard before you catch your flight, and you won’t have to work nearly as hard once you arrive overseas.