Aug 15, 2012

Travel tips: Before you leave

It's travel tips time. And this time it's all about things you need to do before your trip. I've got only nine days before I leave, so these are some of the things that I've been doing too.

Contact your bank and credit cards. Give them a call to let them know when and where you'll be traveling, then you're less likely to have your card put on hold due to suspicious activity. You can also find out what your ATM and transaction fees will be overseas, since they will usually vary from your normal ones. And the ATMs are the best places to get your foreign currency. It's fast and easy and will get you the best rates. Also, internationally they tend to prefer MasterCard and Visa, so leave your Discover card at home.

Call your cell phone carrier. Ask if your phone will work wherever you are going and if you need to add anything to your plan to make calls. Also find out the rates to make call from where you'll be, so you won't be surprised when you get back from vacation and see your cell phone bill. If you are staying for a while, you can also look into renting a phone once you get to your destination.

Make copies of your itinerary, hotel info, passport and credit cards. Leave a copy of all of these at home with your family or emergency contact and keep another in the bottom of your suitcase. This way if anything gets lost or stolen you have all the info to get it replaced and the numbers to call. And you family will also have a way of contacting you at your hotel(s) if need be.

Is there anything I've missed? Please let me know, I want to be prepared.