Traveling and seeing new things are some of the great joys in life, however, it is not something that is without risk. There is a whole range of things to be aware of, and the fact that you are having to do so when not in your comfort zone makes the challenge all that more difficult. The key to making this as achievable as possible is planning.
If one thing is absolute, 100% essential to be arranged before travel, it is insurance. If you find yourself in a situation where you are required to make a claim, it is too late for a new policy. Travel insurance is no different from any other type these days. You can search via a comparison site or app to find the cheapest deal. What you need to be aware of is that on these supposed comparison sites, all policies are not equal. You need to dig deeper and check out the policies terms and conditions in detail. You often find that the supposed best deal has a lot of features missing.
Researching your destination should go beyond a quick Google search for the top tourist sites. Check out reviews of your proposed hotel or accommodation and see what previous guests have made of the place. Go further than checking out the average star rating. Dig down, and discard any one-word reviews, they are likely to be bots anyway. Read the content of the good and bad reviews, this will tell you what features were praised and which were complained about.
Staying healthy and avoiding ills such as food poisoning are some of the trials of traveling. Traveling is draining, and it is advisable to prepare by putting yourself through a healthy eating regime in the weeks leading up to the trip. In certain places, it might make sense to use bottled water for drinking and brushing your teeth. Food preparation can also be an issue, stick to official restaurants, and avoid street food.
Disease & Infections
Many places in the world that we might visit often there are diseases that either is not a thing back home, or have been eradicated. You should check with your physician before any international travel. Assess the risk, and arrange for any vaccines required before traveling. Even the local pests can be different, even when they are not disease carriers, you may not have had the experience of dealing with no see um bites, for example.
Some cities or regions can have dangers that are not readily apparent to an outsider. You may want to consider employing a guide or even taking a guided holiday while avoiding the dangerous areas for crime or wildlife. You may also get discounted entry to visitor attractions as part of a guided group.
Legal representation is something we hope you should never need, but it’s always something to have an idea of. If you have bought it well, it might be included in your travel insurance. Whether you are accused of a crime or are the victim, it is important to have a good lawyer that can translate any detail into English.
Many countries have a high level of English speakers, especially in tourist areas. But do not take this for granted. It always pays to learn as much as you can of the local language as possible. There are a range of phone apps that can help you pick up the basics, and more if you want.
Check Government Advice
Most destinations are fine, but it’s always good to give your government website a check to see if there are any advisory notices concerning travel to your destination. Advice such as this is especially true if you are aware of any trouble in the country or region. Not checking this can have serious consequences for your safety and even your insurance, which may not pay out if you travel against official advice.
If something does go wrong, you may be entitled to a refund if you cancel before traveling. This is something to check as you book your trip. You might have to pay extra to get a trip that doesn’t charge fees in the event of a cancellation, but this could be worth it long-term. It might be more difficult to get refunds if you book the components of your trip separately. If a flight is canceled you might then not be eligible for a refund on accommodation. But if they are booked as a package, then things may be different.