You’ve packed your guidebooks, your spare underwear, and even invested in a good pair of headphones to keep you entertained on the flight, but are you sure that you’re prepared for the most common untimely disasters that might ruin your perfectly-planned trip? You won’t be able to sidestep every unfortunate eventuality, but there are a few ways that you can avoid some of the most common travel disasters if you know how to plan in advance.
Bookmark this page, or make a note for your next journey, and be sure that you’re well-prepared for a great trip.
Disaster 1: Having TSA Agents Ruin your Luggage
If you end up in the line to security and your bundle of wired charging devices and electronics have prompted TSA agents to check your baggage for anything suspicious, then the last thing you need is for those professionals to have to cut through your padlock to get inside of your bag. This happens when the padlock you choose can’t be opened by their specialized universal keys.
If you want to comply with the TSA and ensure that your luggage remains secure at the same time, then you’ll need a TSA-approved padlock. These locks are just as secure as any other when it comes to protecting your valuables from thieves, but they also come with a lock that can be accessed only by TSA agents – meaning that they can unlock and relock your baggage as they need to, with no damage to your luggage.
Disaster 2: Losing Your Passport
There are few nightmares worse in the eyes of a traveler than losing their passport in a foreign location. If you want to avoid some of the most common travel disasters, you should be prepared for a passport mishap. Whether it’s lost or stolen, your response should be to act immediately by searching for the document, then contacting the relevant authorities, such as the US embassy.
Create an emergency passport kit for the next time you’re travelling somewhere new. While the procedure for obtaining an emergency passport will differ from one country to the next, you’re still going to need:
- Proof of your U.S. citizenship
- A photo ID
- A passport-sized photo
It’s also a good idea to create a copy of your passport to keep both at home, and with you on your travels.
Disaster 3: A Missed Flight
Airplane journeys are unfair – while your flight could be hours late and you don’t get so much as an apology or explanation, when you’re a couple of minutes late, you could end up being locked out and searching for an alternative route to your destination. If you’re looking for ways to avoid some of the most common travel disasters, a missed flight is probably on your list.
As simplistic as it sounds, the solution is easy: Get to the airport much earlier than you actually need to be there. Check out the website for your airport to get recommended arrival times, and make sure that you’re aware of any sudden changes to your schedule. You can always jot down a couple of flight numbers just in case there is a problem with your flight that leaves you stranded – even when you do arrive at the gate three hours early.