Planning a Long Family Vacation: Guest Post
After deciding when and where you plan to vacation, it is time to start planning the details. Planning for an international long-term trip ideally starts about a year before your departure date. These five tips will help to reduce stress and make sure everything goes according to plan.
Create a Detailed Budget
Do research to estimate the expected cost and determine how much you need to save. Consider cutting unnecessary costs, selling some things, or getting another job to relieve some of the financial burden. Include any foreign currency exchange rates and travel money cards in your budget. Calculate your expected daily expenses and add 20 percent so that you don’t run out of money.
Consult a Travel Agent
While there are travel sites available, for a long-term trip, a travel agent has more expertise and knowledge. They address your specific needs and solve any problems you encounter such as canceled flights, booking accommodations, and visa requirements. A good travel agent can save you time and money by researching and facilitating all aspects of your trip and helping you solve any problems that may arise. Look for a travel agent who is certified by The Travel Institute to be sure you get the best service.
Secure Important Documents
Make sure passports are updated, start the immunization process, and apply for any visas. Make two copies of these documents, including picture identification, to make it easier if you need to replace any of them. Leave one copy with someone at home and store the other in a safe place away from your hard copies.
Make Certain Arrangements
You need to notify your real estate agency, bank, employer, and post office to redirect your mail before your departure. Also, decide which belongings you plan to store in a secure facility. Establish a plan for someone to care for your house or pets. If you plan to use a service, check reviews and recommendations. Set your departure date and book flights by researching prices, dates, and any layovers.
Take Safety Precautions
To reduce the risk of medical emergencies, consider certain precautions such as researching to determine if food and water are safe. If you have dietary restrictions, have translated cards clearly stating your restrictions in case of a language barrier. Make a packing list and include gear needed to protect against environmental hazards such as cold, altitude, and sun exposure. Find out about any protection you may need; for example, become a member of MedjetAssist to help with transportation in case you are hospitalized.
The most important part of your trip is to have a good time. Following these tips can help reduce stress during planning and if issues arise during your vacation. Remember, you need to start planning a year in advance to make sure all the necessary steps are in place. Having a travel agent gives you someone to rely on as you plan and to handle any issues you encounter. Preparation is invaluable for a long-term international trip, so keep a list to stay on track.