A traveler’s luck is a shifty creature indeed: one moment, you’re having a blast – the next one, you’re down with food poisoning, stranded at the airport, or locked out of your cash. Misplaced luggage, cancelled flights, pickpockets, and healthcare emergencies are only a few common incidents that can befall unwary tourists, especially when they’re supposed to be enjoying themselves. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should drop your holiday plans and call it quits: it just means that you need to cover your bases well before the departure – and here’s how.
1. Keep your credit cards close – and your cash closer
When preparing for the trip, set aside a budget generous enough to cover all the costs on the go – and don’t forget about the emergency stash! Healthcare costs, unexpected transportation expenses, conversion rate differences, and various application procedures with unanticipated fee calls are all too real a risk when travelling abroad, so make sure you’ve transferred sufficient funds for the trip to your debit card to cover any potential crisis scenario.
Also, you may want to have some ready money at hand: you can divide it into two stashes to be safe in case someone’s slippery fingers locate your wallet while you’re taking selfies.
2. Put tabs on home valuables while you’re away
Don’t forget to store your valuables and important files in a safe place before leaving home. You won’t be able to keep tabs on potential visitors, especially not those that bide their time before they take action and scurry off with your assets.
When packing, store your passport, debit and credit cards, and expensive jewelry away from pickpocket’s reach. Getting robbed of a critical document may cause you high application and/or re-issuance expenses during or after the trip.
3. Don’t let mail piles lie unattended
In case you’re going to be away for a longer period of time, check mail redirect options at the local post office or put mail on hold to avoid being cheated out of precious personal info. Mail on hold will be delivered to you immediately after your return, and it will be safe from nosy mailbox parkers until you pick it up.
This is important even if you aren’t expecting confidential deliveries: you can never know whether your next-door neighbor is a secret mailbox voyeur who might just use your name and address to get access to delayed-payment services that will land the bill in your lap.
4. Luggage lost – never to be found
Dozens of millions bags get lost or mislaid at airports every year, so don’t put all your clothes in lady luck’s backpack – you may never get to see your favorite getup again. Instead of losing your mind over luggage delivery delays, pack a fresh change of clothes in your carryon to stay on the safe – and dressed – side of the conveyance belt.
Also, be careful when picking up your luggage, and check the tag twice: airport haste works in mysterious ways, and you may wind up lugging around a suitcase with your namefellow’s undies just because they share your taste in luggage brands.
5. Pick and pay – the easy way
Picking a holiday destination can be a bugger, and even more so when on a tight budget. Don’t get exchange rate oscillations cheat you out of your dream vacation: with just a bit of pre-trip research, you can find lay-by holiday booking and payment options that allow you to lock in exchange rates and pay for the trip in several installments without added interest.
Travel savings start at home – and continue on the go, so if you want to max your holiday fun without maxing out your credit card, do your homework well before you start packing.
Vacations are not always fun, games, and sunshine: unpleasant trip twists can – and usually do – happen when you’re off your guard. Pull out all the stops on the road to your dream vacation by prepping yourself financially, physically, and mentally well ahead of the holiday – you’ll thank us when you return.