Going abroad for your one or two weeks in the sun is something to always look forward to, but in the few weeks before you head off, there are certain things that you need to take care of and think about, so that they do not get forgotten in the last minute rush to get the family into the car and heading to your plane of time.
Below, we give you a list of the things you should be thinking about before you hit the road ready for some sun, sea and sand on your annual holiday abroad.
Never leave the country without some sort of valid travel insurance and equally important is to make sure that the cover you do have, will cover where you are going and also you as the person insured. Although many banks now offer travel insurance as part of their customer’s bank accounts, it is still important to make sure that the cover you have is correct and will cover you, and if you are buying a new policy make sure you choose a trusted company that will cover where you are going and also any existing conditions. Travel insurance is one of those things, like most insurances, that you will never appreciate having until the time that you need it, so make sure you have it when heading off abroad.
Get Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)
Head over to the NHS website and make sure that you have obtained your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) so that in the event of an emergency you will have the correct information to make sure that you or your family member can get treated quickly and correctly. It is important to note that the EHIC does not replace travel insurance, so as above, it is still vital you have that as well, but it can make sure that you get any treatment for free or at least at reduced cost, should you meet the requirements and criteria. Well worth having.
Check Your Passport
Passports do not last for ever, in fact they are actually only valid for ten years if you are an adult, five years if you are under 15, so it is vital you check your passport and make sure it is in date when you travel out and also very importantly on the date you plan to travel home. If your passport is out of date then you need to renew it as soon as possible, as although most are turned around in three weeks, you should allow for much longer in case of delays or problems with processing, which can happen in some circumstances.
For some the idea of getting their overseas currency is a game of chance, waiting until they believe that they can get the best deal from the exchange rate and then cashing in, but for others, they just want the best deal they can find at that moment in time. No matter whether you wish to gamble or just show your hand, always try to make sure you get the best possible deal by shopping around, usually via your bank, Post Office and travel exchange bureaus and get your money sorted to make sure you have it ready to go abroad with. Although you can get your currency when you land in your holiday destination, by this time you will have a distinct lack of choice, so it can make more sense to shop around before you set off.
Check Your Luggage Allowance
Depending on your airline, your baggage allowance could be different to what you are used to, so rather than just turning up at the airport and then having a panic moment where you need to re-arrange your belongings or even worse, dump them, check the airlines policy and allowances before you start packing, and then pack accordingly. There is no one follow all system in the UK, so every airline is generally different in how much you can take, so it is always worth a check before you start your journey to the airport.
One less hassle to always try and take care of before you go abroad is your car parking, as not only can you save money by booking in advance, but it can also give you more time to make sure that the company you trust your car with are not going to have a mini adventure of their own with your vehicle! We have all seen and read the horror stories of leaving a car with the wrong kind of people, so always make sure you research where you are parking and that you have booked in advance to avoid disappointment.
Tell Your Bank
In the age of heightened security and automated systems that can detect credit card fraud and fraudulent banking activity before it even comes to the attention of a human being, it is vital you tell your bank you are off on your travels and where you are going. This will then help to make sure that your cards do not get blocked or declined due to unusual behaviour, and can also just help to make sure the bank knows where you are and can therefore protect you even more.
Think About Your Home
Security is normally your number on priority for your family, so always take a step back and make sure you think about your home and how secure it is before you travel, as trying to sort everything in the midst of packing and sorting your family out is often a bad idea. Always let a family member or a trusted neighbour know you are going away so that they can keep an eye on your property and make sure you have locked all the windows and doors before you travel. An open door or window can not only present an easy opportunity to a criminal, but it can sometimes affect your insurance should anything happen, so lock, check and then check again, before you leave for the airport.
So, once all of these things are taken care of you should be ready, set and go to enjoy the perfect holiday abroad. Although these things might seem overly simple, the more you can get tackled and sorted before you have to even start worrying about packing your bags, the more you can start to stop the stress of the pre planning for your holiday and the more you can start to really start looking forward to that week or two, in the sun, enjoying a whole new world with your family.