Travel Checklist: 7 Must-Do Things Before Any Trip

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You’ve got the travel bug, and your next adventure is on the horizon. Exciting times ahead! But before you start dreaming about that first vacation selfie, some groundwork must be done.

I’m talking about the not-so-glamorous part of traveling that is yet super important. To keep things as smooth as possible, I’ve prepared a checklist to nail down before you hit the road (or skies).

#1 Passport and Visa Check

This one’s a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many trips nearly got torpedoed because someone’s passport was about to expire. Most countries say your passport must be valid six months before your planned return date.

And visas? Don’t get me started. Some countries are chill, but others need you to jump through hoops. Check the requirements well in advance because embassies and bureaucracy take their time.

#2 Get Your Finances in Order

Tell your bank you’re traveling. Nothing screams buzzkill like a frozen card when you’re trying to pay for that “car rental near me.” While at it, determine if your destination is more of a cash or card place.

Yep, some places still operate on cash only. And, seriously, don’t rely on just one card. Spread your funds across a couple to avoid being left high and dry.

#3 Insurance: Don’t Leave Home Without It

Travel insurance isn’t sexy, but neither pays a small fortune for a doctor’s visit abroad. Get coverage for health, trip cancellations, and, yes, lost luggage. Please read the fine print and ensure it covers any specific activities you plan to do, like scuba diving or mountain biking.

#4 Health Checks and Meds

Got any jabs you need for your destination? Some places want you vaccinated against things like Yellow Fever. And if you’re on any meds, make sure you have enough to last the trip, plus a bit extra.

Please keep them in their original packaging to avoid questions at customs. Also, a small first-aid kit with the basics (painkillers, band-aids, antiseptic cream) should never hurt.

#5 Copy Important Documents

Scan or take photos of your passport, visa, insurance policy, and other critical documents. Please email them to yourself or store them in a secure cloud service. If your stuff gets stolen or lost, having digital copies can help you prove your identity and get replacements faster.

#6 Pack Smart

Remember, you’re going on a trip, not moving. Pack what you need and then take out half. Trust me. Check the weather of your destination and pack accordingly. Rolling your clothes saves space and prevents wrinkles.

Always pack a change of clothes and the essentials in your carry-on, just in case your checked luggage decides to take a different vacation.

#7 Home Prep

If you will be away for over a week, arrange for someone to check your place.

Pause any regular deliveries, and don’t forget to set up an email auto-responder if you’re going off the grid. The last thing you want is to return to a mountain of spoiled mail or work crises that could have been avoided.

There you have it. Getting these things sorted before you go means you can fully immerse yourself in the experience once you’re there. Travel is about the unexpected, but a little prep is good.

Claire S. Allen
Claire S. Allen
Hi there! I'm Claire S. Allen, a vibrant Gemini who's as bold as my favorite color, red. I'm a fan of two cool things: strolling the streets in a red jacket and crafting articles that connect with readers. With my warm and friendly personality, Claire is sure to brighten up your day!
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