You have your dream trip planned, and now you are just counting down the days until you are eating macarons under the Eiffel Tower. You have mapped out exactly what museums and historical sites you want to hit, and where you will be staying. You think you are 100% prepared, but there are five things you must do before you leave that you have probably forgotten about, but do not fret, I am here to remind you.
- Make photocopies of all of your identification (license, passport etc.) . If you happen to get your purse of bag stolen, you do not want to be without ID. Although photocopies will unfortunately not take the place of ID, having the copies will allow you to replace these items much more quickly. Take 5 minutes today to go make copies of these items. It could save you a major headache later.
2. Download the apps of the airlines and trains that you will be using. Many airlines and trains have mobile apps that you can download. These apps come in very handy as they can be used as your ticket and alert you of delays.
3. Call your bank and let them know where/when you will be traveling. This will prevent them from declining your card if you happen to use it abroad. (Although you should avoid swiping internationally due to major fees that can accumulate. Try and stick to pulling cash out of ATM’s as the fees will be much less.)
4. Weigh and measure your luggage. European airlines tend to have stricter rules regarding size and weight of luggage. If you are taking smaller planes in between countries once you are in Europe, it would be wise to check your specific airlines requirements. A carry on in the US is not necessarily considered a carry on in Europe. Knowing this beforehand can save you from unexpected fees.
5. Get a basic international data plan for your phone. Although this is not 100% necessary, I have been in too many situations where I needed my phones GPS and did not have a data plan. You can always find a cafe that has wifi, but that is not always an option. You can talk to your individual carrier about the plans that they offer (many are very affordable for limited data). Sometimes it is better to be safe than sorry in case of an emergency.
Hope these were good reminders for you before you take off on your trips. Share with me in the comments below where you are going, and if you have any other reminders of things to do before you leave. Happy Travels!