Traveling to a new place can be a lot of fun, but it can also be very dangerous! There are a lot of things that can go wrong, and you need to keep them all in mind when planning your trip. Read on for some tips on traveling safely.
To really get a feel for where you are vacationing, follow the locals. Many top vacation spots start to feel very generic and touristy. By asking around and finding where the people who live there hang out, you will get a more authentic feel for the area, and as a bonus, avoid the price markups that plague tourist hot spots.
Buy airport carry-on sized toiletries when flying to your next travel destination. Store them in zip lock bags in your luggage and you won’t need to worry about security confiscating them.
Make sure to research what the weather is going to be like in your destination. This will allow you to pack more appropriately. If it will be cold, you will need to take lots of layers. If it will be warm, then you know you can pack a lot of light weight clothing and sandals.
When planning to fly for a trip, don’t forget any frequent flier miles you might have racked up. It does you no good to hang onto those once you’ve already gone on your big vacation. Even if you don’t have enough miles to cover the whole trip, many airlines will allow you to discount your rate using your miles.
When selecting luggage, pay attention to the ease of carrying it over long distances. A rugged metal rolling suitcase is usually ideal. Some rolling bags even have straps that allow them to be worn as a backpack through areas where you can’t roll them. You and your luggage will be walking longer distances than you think.
Try to wait until the last minute to book. It may sound counter-intuitive, but waiting until the last moment often frees up deals brought on by companies looking to fill their open slots for low rates. A hotel room with no one in it does not provide revenue, so many last minute visitors can request, and get, great deals.
Having a good set of maps or road atlas can save one from a possible disaster if they get lost or electronic map devices such as GPS or smart phones run out of battery. Many things can cause electronics to malfunction and stop working. Having backup option can save one’s trip.
Check the websites of your airline to get the best deal. Travelocity and similar websites aren’t the only place to find deals on airfares.
As long as you can be flexible with your travel dates, search for flights using the broadest range of dates that you can. This search feature is part of most travel websites and doing a broad search allows you to see if there are certain days that are cheaper to fly on than others. Using this technique could save you a significant amount of money.
If you are interested in traveling comfortably on your vacation, don’t be afraid to upgrade your seat. Most airlines are combining traditional business class and coach seats by offering “premium economy” options. They have larger seats and better legroom, but they often do not cost as much. You can also try to upgrade your seat just before boarding, but you won’t know about the availability of the upgrades if you check in to your flight online.
Make sure to have all medical information for yourself and your family on hand. If any member of your family has special medical needs, then you need to order medical alert bracelets if you do not own them already. These are the first thing medical professionals should look for and it also can give a point of contact in the event of separation.
If you will be driving when you travel to another country, take the time to contact your insurance carrier. They can give you any needed documentation that pertains to your insurance coverage, any additional insurance you may need and much needed advice or information about regulations for driving at your destination.
Use the airline miles you have accumulated to save the cost of the flights to a destination. There is really no good reason to save them if you are looking to make some travel plans, but look into the conversion of cash to airline miles. If your flight costs less than $300 you may want to go ahead and pay for them with cash.
There are many places when traveling where you can sample local food and not break the bank. Try locating restaurants and eateries in central markets and areas. It is recommended that you arrive fairly early as this is generally for breakfast and lunch. Most of the buildings these are in are very charming and indicative of local culture.
Try not to over pack. When people travel, they sometimes pack unnecessary items, such as heavy books or clothing. Just pack what you know you will use. This makes life easier by not having to lug around a heavy bag or suitcase. Also, try not to use more than one or two suitcases per person.
See what transportation options are available in the cities and towns you plan on staying during your trips. There may be no requirement that you opt for car rental. Many times public transportation is much cheaper and actually an easier method of traveling because of constant traffic congestion and the stress this brings.
Only prepay for packages if you know that there is no way that you will have to shift dates. If you do prepay, make sure that you look into the cancellation policies so you do not lose out on the money that you have prepaid onto it if you should have to cancel.
As you can see, there are a lot of things to think about to stay safe when traveling, whether you’re planning a trip or are already at the destination. Make sure to keep this article as a checklist so you can be sure not to forget anything you need to stay safe.