About to leave on your next getaway and wondering what should be on your pre-holiday checklist? Here’s our list of things to do before your next trip — and some of them, like travel insurance, are more important than you think! Life always seems to get busier just before a trip and that’s usually when we forget all the important things. While some things can be left off the list, these can’t. So better to get these items ticked off sooner rather than later to get your holiday off to a stress-free start.
#1: Purchase Travel Insurance
If you’re anything like me, you’ve planned for every second of your vacation, but you haven’t planned for this: You’re suddenly feeling very ill and need to see a doctor in a foreign country, or one of your connecting flights have been cancelled and now you’re stuck in a different city for the night, without luggage or accommodation. That was until I realized that travel insurance can save a lot of hassle in these exact instances. So if you’re wondering whether you need it, the answer is yes!
Travel insurance can cover you from losses arising from the need for medical treatment in another province or a foreign country, including the cost of hospital stays, doctors’ fees, lab tests and ambulance services. In addition, we usually top up our coverage with additional non-medical insurance to cover trip cancellation, trip interruption and protection for lost baggage and personal effects — which came in handy during our infamous 24-hour New York trip!
#2: Make Copies of Important Documents
It doesn’t sound necessary until you need them and don’t have them. Having copies of all important documents such as your passport, visas, credit cards, debit cards, itineraries and health and travel insurance policies can help you avoid some of the pain associated with lost or stolen luggage or travel documents. You can also email a copy to yourself so you always have digital access to it. That way, you’ll have access to all your necessary information anywhere in the world.
#3: Confirm ALL Your Bookings in Advance
Flights. Accommodation. Car rentals. I email every single company we’ve booked with to confirm that they have our booking number on file and are expecting us. We have booked on a well-known hotel site only to arrive and find out the hotel had no record of the booking. Yikes! Lesson learned. We ALWAYS double-confirm now and take printed confirmations along on our trip. It also gives us the opportunity to make any additional requests or ask about directions.
#4: Notify Your Bank of Your Travels
Let your bank or credit-card provider know that you’re going to be out of town so they should expect to see some international charges. If you don’t, there’s a chance they could freeze your card or flag it for fraud. Also be aware that if you’re travelling with an Amex credit card, many merchants don’t accept it, so always have a small amount of cash in the local currency on hand.
#5: Prepare for and Prevent Jetlag
Jetlag can be extremely frustrating to deal with when you’re trying to maximize daylight hours in a new city but your body can’t keep up. Since it can take from a few days to a few weeks for your body to adjust to a new time zone, we’ve come up with a way to anticipate the time change and decrease the effects of jetlag. And it’s so simple! Just follow the online jetlag plan here and start shifting your sleep schedule into the time zone that you’re visiting.
Thank you to Sun Life Financial for sponsoring this post. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog, because without them, we wouldn’t be able to do what we love!