Pre Travel Preparations
Tip 1 : Boost Holiday Pleasure with Good Planning
Travel broadens the mind as nothing else does. Boost the pleasure of a perfect holiday by planning well in advance. Here are tips based on the experiences of seasoned travelers!
First, get all the information. Guidebooks, travelogues, travel literature, maps, and brochures are stepping-stones to start you off. There are the standard travelers' bibles like the country- and city-specific guides from lonely Planet, Fodors, Rough Guide, EyeWitness, and Footprint publications. Browse the titles you are after in a bookshop or library before buying any.
Do not buy old editions because the very latest edition will still be at least a year old. The Internet is the ultimate resource. Look for travel forums where you can interact with other travelers and post any questions you can think of. There are hundreds of traveler blogs to read, and your dilemma would be to choose the ones that would be relevant or of special interest.
Tip 2 : Backpacking - The Ultimate Culture Experience
For many people, especially students, backpacking is the only way to travel.
It gives one the chance to really experience the culture of the countries being visited, whether it's Europe, Australia, the Americas, or Asia. Understandably, when planning a backpacking adventure, the first thing most travellers do is think about where they want to go.
But arranging decent travel insurance is also crucial. Why? Think about what can happen while you're abroad. Hopefully it'll be an adventure, but you'll be visiting strange places where you may not even speak the language.
Tip 3 : Be Oranized with the Paperwork
Hole-punch all of your information for your trip (and make copies of anything you'll need), organize it by what you'll need chronologically, and place it in a slim, bright, lightweight soft-side plastic binder.
It's very easy to find in your carry bag, and you can easily flip through to find your itinerary, the address of the hotel you're going to, the phone number of the person you're supposed to hook up with, etc.
Tip 4 : Carry Color Copies of Passports and Tickets
I recently traveled with a group of students who were going to Europe for the first time. All of these students had a disability and were participating in a pilot program.
Everyone was told to be at the airport 2 hours prior to departure. Of course, one of the students was very late. What saved the day and enabled her to get on the plane was the fact that I was carrying color copies of everyone's passports and tickets.
The men at the ticket counter were very helpful, and when it was 7 min. to departure, they checked the student in using the copies of her passport and ticket. At 4 min. to departure, I had to leave the ticket counter where I was waiting for her and board the plane. Since the ticket agent knew what she looked like from the copy of her passport, he waited at the passenger drop off area and when she arrived he used his radio to communicate to the plane that the student had arrived and was on her way.
Since she was blind, he hurried her to the gate with no time to spare. The fact that I had copies of her paperwork and was able to check her in before she arrived and the help of the ticket counter staff and the pilot were the only reasons she made the plane.
All ticket counter staff may not be as cooperative, but having the documentation may help in similar situations. P.S. Everyone had a great time!
Tip 5 : Check with your Medical Insurance Carrier
Check with your medical insurance carrier. Some will not cover you, and some have limitations or are cumbersome to use -
for example: you will have to pay for everything and then wait to be reinbursed. Before traveling out of your country visit www.GlobalMed.biz to see what coverage is available and its cost.
Tip 6 : Confirm Your Reservation
Be sure your reservation is confirmed, otherwise you may not have a reservation at all.
Especially now that everything is so instant with the Internet, it's very possible that you could call or email an establishment about availability, send in your information, dates, etc. only to check back to find your room, or suite was booked to someone else.
If you don't make up your mind on the spot, the lodging establishment is NOT obligated to book the reservation with you. Just because you called or sent an email indicating you want to place a reservation does not mean you HAVE a reservation. Someone else could call or email 10 seconds later and book the vacancy with a CONFIRMATION (while you're still on the fence, or just delayed in your response).
The Better Business Bureau acknowledges that lodging establishments are within their right to book a room or suite to someone else, if in the meantime you are undecided or have not yet responded with all the appropriate information. If the lodging establishment did not transact a payment (cash or credit) with you, then there is no binding agreement.
This position by lodging owners is understandable, since there are thousands of non-returned calls and 'blow-offs' where people never bother to follow through on a tentative reservation. Therefore lodging establishments have developed the "confirmation" as a way of verifying to you that your reservation cannot be booked to someone else, and if for some reason it is, then they are obligated to provide you with alternate arrangements.
Many lodging establishments will not hold a room or a suite for the same reasons: Many times people just never call back. Meanwhile the lodging owner would be sitting with a vacancy on an empty promise. So do yourself a favor and don't insult the lodging owner by asking them to 'hold' a room for you.
If part of the reason you are undecided is because of timing with other people's plans, or because you are still 'comparison' shopping, then it's best to hold off on actually placing a reservation until you have the those planning details ironed out. Place your reservation when you've made up your mind, and when everyone can agree on the time and place. The reservation process will go much more quickly, and you will have a CONFIRMATION that secures your getaway spot.
Tip 7 : Duplicate Important Documents and Cards
Go to a copy machine, take everything out of your wallet, put it on the copy machine, and copy it (front and back) twice.
Leave one set home and store the second in a secret place in your suitcase. If your wallet is ever stolen, you will know exactly what you have lost and will have all the telephone numbers to call to cancel credit cards and the credit card numbers, etc. at your fingertips.
Courtesy : 1000tips4trips.com
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