03-18-2014 08:50 AM - edited 03-18-2014 12:23 PM
Here’s a just few that I used on a recent trip:
> Provide family/friends and pet-care providers with your itinerary and a way to reach you in case of emergency.
> Complete a “hold mail” request with the United States Postal Service (https://holdmail.usps.com/holdmail/).
> If travelling abroad, enroll in the State Department’s free Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive real-time travel alerts by email (https://step.state.gov/step/). Know the location and contact information for the local consulate.
What would you add to this list?
03-24-2014 11:54 AM
Make two copies of the front and back of the credit/debit cards, driver's license, and passport that you will be taking with you. Seal in separate envelopes and give one to your travel companion (if you have one) or leave with someone at home. Place in an interior zipper compartment of your checked luggage. Do NOT mark the outside of the envelope as to the contents if in your suitcase. This will give you all the numbers you need should the worst happen and your handbag or wallet is stolen.
03-24-2014 12:02 PM - edited 03-24-2014 12:03 PM
We travel internationally extensivley.
First, the key is to make a 'travel list' and save it on your computer as a document (or a hard copy if you don't have a computer). That way you don't have to wrack your brain for each trip. Make the list extensive (for winter/summer, action trips etc) and cross off those line items that may not apply.
We list: medicines, moving a computer back-up drive to a neighbor, disconnect electronics, leave calendar with a friend, leave copies of passports with friends, bring a photo copy of passports, have emergency phone numbers for creditcards in case they get stolen, leave copy of that with a friend, give keys to house and car to neighbor, show them where emegency shut-offs are. we also turn off the water main valve, lower the heat or turn off the water heaters, extra pair of prescriptions, I also use 'last-pass to manage online passwords so I only need one master, and when using that on-line traveling I use a 'one use password' for that site. I have an alarm system in the house so we have a designated person for the alarm company to call when we travel.If traveling in the winter we have a neighbor start the car every few days and also come to the house to check things. The list contains all clothing needs, things like mosquito repellent, bicycle items etc etc.
The other reader's items are also included - alerting credit card co's is important as is monitoring charges.
03-24-2014 12:59 PM
That's a good point. We travel so often so what we do is have a list of key things to know how to say:
Hello, thanks, goodbye, salt, pepper, water, red, white, slices, pieces, 1-10, do you have a room for tonight, what is the cost?, Can you show me on the map?, Right, left, straight, beef, chicken, fish, vegetable names, IMPORTANT - things you may not like to eat - in my case: liver, tripe, kidney etc.(that way you can steer away from things. I had a nasty surprise once in Brugge where I ordered a crock of a local stew that looked and smelled great but it was full of liver and for me it was inedible - lessons learned.
03-26-2014 04:42 PM
I'm big on researching as much as I can before going anyplace. I always get a guidebook (Rick Steves, if available). I spend hours online checking on possible places to eat, where the grocery store is, things to do in the area on a rainy day. I check weather conditions in general, but especially look at the forecast, the day before leaving, to make sure I don't need to pack something (although I have pretty good outdoor gear for all weather). I like Yelp travel forums and use them to ask questions (they are often frequented by locals who can give you good info). I look at maps online and often use Google Earth to actually look at the outside of where I'm staying (I just did this for a place in the Canadian Rockies and the Lake District, U.K.), two trips I'm going on soon.
Similar to another posting, I carry passport info in two places and have travel notes printed out and put into plastic covers or written inside the guidebook. That is carried on the plane with me with all the address/phone info for everything.