Travelling abroad and experiencing new sights, sounds, and cultures is an extremely rewarding experience. It teaches us about life and broadens our horizons. It’s also a great deal of fun. A few factors require consideration before you set off on your adventure however, regardless of where you choose to go.
Make sure your passport is valid for the time you are out of the UK. If you are applying for a new passport, allow yourself plenty of time before the date you are scheduled to travel – it can take up to six weeks to obtain a new first passport. Numerous countries require visas for entry. Therefore, you need to double check that you have all the necessary documents to enter the territory you are visiting.
You also need to ensure that you have enough money to cover all your expenses while you’re away. Additionally, you’re going to need a back-up plan in case you are robbed or run out of funds. There are some acceptable alternatives to carrying large amounts of cash, with specialist traveller’s cards being standout examples.
It’s a smart idea to borrow or purchase a guidebook about the country or city you are going to. Outline what you want to do and make sure that you will have adequate time to get through everything. A guidebook will familiarise you with the community prior to your arrival.
Read up about the local laws and customs of your destination. This will make you aware of the appropriate way to behave whilst there. For example, in some countries you may be expected to dress a specific way. It’s important to respect the local culture when travelling abroad to avoid embarrassment, or legal issues for that matter.
Medical insurance is important when going overseas. In most countries, you must pay for hospital treatment. Without insurance, it can end up being extremely expensive. Insurance will see to it that you are covered in the event of an accident or illness.
Journeying to some countries requires additional health precautions, like malaria vaccinations for instance. Visit your GP at least eight weeks prior to setting off to gain some counsel. It’s also a great idea to take a basic first aid kit with you just in case.
Check the website of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) before going abroad for statistics on potential safety threats, such as natural disasters or terrorism.
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