Your first trip to another country can feel very exciting. Don't let your enthusiasm distract you from preparing, though. Before you take your first trip abroad, you should follow these five pieces of advice. They'll help you save money, stay safe, and avoid bureaucratic hurdles.
Hold Your Mail Service
Hold Your Mail Service
Image via Flickr by Photographing Travis
When thieves roam neighborhoods, they look for the easiest targets. An overly stuffed mailbox tells intruders that they can break into your home without much resistance.
You can help protect your home by asking the postal service to hold your mail. You just have to fill out a simple form to stop thieves from targeting your home.
Unlock Your Phone
Many phone service providers charge high rates for international data use. You can avoid ridiculous rates by unlocking your phone. When you reach your destination, buy a prepaid SIM card from a local provider.
Having a prepaid SIM card means that you get to pay the lower prices that locals enjoy. Prepaid cards also cap your data expense. When you have a limited amount of data to use, you're more likely to reserve it for important times.
Prepare for Medical Emergencies
Make sure you pack all of your medications so you'll have them while you travel. Depending on where you go, you may have a difficult time getting prescriptions filled. You may also want to talk to your doctor to make sure you're healthy enough for long flights and stressful travel situations.
Since you can't predict when a medical emergency will happen, you should get a MedjetAssist membership. If you get sick or have an accident, MedjetAssist will arrange transportation to a safe medical facility where you can receive treatment. MedjetAssist will even help you get out of a country when a crisis makes the area unsafe.
Get a Passport and Make Copies
You'll need to get a passport before you can travel to another country. It can take up to eight weeks to get your passport, so don't wait until the last minute. Even expedited passport service, which costs more money, can take up to three weeks.
Once you have your passport, make a few copies of the document. Keep each copy in a different location to lower the risk of losing all of your information. You may even want to give one to a travel companion. If you misplace your passport while traveling, having a copy makes it much easier to get back into the United States.
Notify Your Bank and Credit Card Company
When you start purchasing things in a foreign country, your bank or credit card company might freeze the account to protect you from fraud. Let them know your travel plans ahead of time so you don't lose access to your money or line of credit.
Taking a trip to another country requires some preparation. As long as you follow these tips, though, you should find that you can enjoy your trip without too many worries. When you're prepared, you get to relax and enjoy the experience.