Travelling out of the country and into far and distant lands is a dream for many an avid adventurer, but if you want to be ready for first time international travel, then you’re going to need to plan carefully in advance. Most destinations – wherever it is you’re thinking of going, and whoever you’re thinking of going with, will require some preparation. Though some places only need a couple of weeks of consideration from what to pack, to how much money to take, others are more complex than you might imagine.
The following tips are essential for any first time international travel experience, so keep them in mind the next time you go overseas
1. Get a Passport
This might seem obvious, but a lot of people forget about how important their passport is until the very last minute. To get your passport, you’ll need your birth certificate, two appropriate photos, and another form of identification that preferably proves your citizenship within the country that you come from. If you already have a passport, you’ll need to be sure that there’s at least six months left before the expiry date if you want to go anywhere. Some countries won’t issue a visa without at least six months before the expiration date.
2. Make Sure You’ll Have Power
The chances are that if you’re leaving the country, you’re going to need an adapter or convertor to start charging up your gadgets and smartphones. You can check to see what kind of plugs you’ll need by searching online, but your best bet may be to simply invest in a worldwide USB adapter that works in over 150 different countries. These gadgets will ensure you can continue to charge anything that needs power, without having to invest in a different plug every time you go on a new adventure.
3. Find Out the Exchange Rate
No matter where you’re headed when it comes to first time international travel, you’re going to need cash, and it helps to know how much your money is worth in other currencies. Some online convertors will only deal in hard currencies, which means that if you’re headed to a soft currency country, you’ll need to search a little further. Try to become as familiar as possible with the alternate currency before you leave home.
4. Have a Plan for Communication
Contacting home from your cell phone can be a costly expense depending on where you visit, and internet services aren’t always available. Make a plan with your family for how you’re going to stay in touch. If your hotel has Wi-Fi, figure out the time difference so you can catch up for a few minutes over social media or Skype.
5. Pack Wisely
Don’t just stuff everything into your suitcase at to prepare for first time international travel, think carefully about the things you’re going to need. If you’re unsure about the weather, take multi-purpose layers that can be worn with numerous outfits, and don’t forget to pack a travel umbrella just in case you get caught in the rain. Try to keep your baggage as light as possible, too, as you don’t want to have to end up spending more money on baggage fees at the airport.