Ready for the greatest adventure of a lifetime? Get organized! The world of traveling is full of whirlwind, carefree adventures, but there’s still a lot to do before you go.
One of the best things that any adventurist can do is create a stellar pre-travel check list that you can rely on every time you jet off.
Here are my top six things to remember before every trip!
Get Travel Insurance
Better safe than sorry! When it comes to dealing with your health, safety, and cash abroad, it is important to plan. There are so many things that can happen when you are traveling and good travel insurance can make all the difference.
Most health insurance plans won’t cover treatment abroad, so it’s vital to get travel insurance that covers all of the health issues, big and small, that can come up on the road.
On top of health coverage, things like lost passports, stolen laptops, misplaced prescriptions, cancelled flights, and other scary situations can totally destroy your trip. Having the right insurance can be the difference between a minor inconvenience and paying tens of thousands of dollars.
I’ve been using World Nomads insurance for years now, and it’s a real lifesaver. Before you go anywhere, I highly recommend getting the right insurance for you.
Have a Well-Packed Carry-On
I have spent a crazy amount of time on planes and I’ve learned the importance of a well-packed carry-on. First things first, it’s essential to bring a travel pillow, eye mask, and ear plugs so that you have a chance of getting some good shuteye.
As every jetlagged fashionista knows, you also need a good pair of flats, a cozy sweater, and a good pair of compression socks.
Want to arrive looking like a jet-set diva? You don’t need an overstuffed plastic baggie! Just bring along Benefit’s It’s Potent! Eye cream, Tarte Amazonian Clay BB tinted moisturizer, and Sugar Lip Treatment by Fresh. I never, ever leave home without this power trio.
Read More: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing Guide
Get a VPN… Trust Me!
Having a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is more important than you might think. If you want to keep your data safe and have uncensored internet access, get a VPN before you go abroad.
By setting up a VPN, you’re able to encrypt your data. This is incredibly important when you’re accessing public or semipublic Wi-Fi networks in places like airports, cafés, and hotels. Without this encryption, you are leaving your usernames, passwords, and credit card numbers at risk.
Knowing that many countries block sites like Netflix, Facebook, and BBC, I signed up for ExpressVPN and love it. Imagine being on a dream vacation and not being able to update your Facebook status! Get a VPN and stay connected.
Know if You Need a Visa
The sooner you can get your visa, the better. Even the cutest, brightest smile isn’t going to get you past border officials who need your documents. I learned the hard way when I waited too long to get my Brazilian visa in Los Angeles!
It’s essential to research your destination and be 100% sure you’ve got everything you need.
Contact consulates, work with visa agencies and do whatever you need to do to make sure you are ready well in advance. Never leave visas to the last minute! Paperwork delays can pop up at any time.
I’ve seen so many whimsical dreams turn into nightmares when important details aren’t planned. Don’t get me wrong; I love the idea of seeing where the day will take me but it’s important to know where I am going to lay my head at night.
There are countless things that can affect your ability to get a room—sporting events, local holidays, business conferences. If you end up just taking whatever is available, you might find yourself paying way too much money to stay somewhere you don’t like.
Awesome Luggage & Day Bags
Having great luggage is more important than you might think! When you are living out of a suitcase, it’s essential to have the perfect bag.
It’s also important to remember that a big suitcase means—guess what—a heavy suitcase. You’ll pack so much just trying to fill the elephant you’ll end up bringing stuff you don’t need.
One carry-on suitcase is probably the optimal size if you can manage, but larger suitcases can be necessary for long-term trips.