Travelling should be fun, but can be challenging. You improve your chances of a smooth trip based on how much research and planning you’re willing to invest beforehand.
You will occasionally make mistakes; as tiny as missing your bus stop or being overcharged by a taxi driver or serius enough to ruin your trip and leave you with recuring nightmares.
Taking note of these seemingly harmless mistakes can save you a lot of money, time, and energy.
- Traveling without Checking Visa Requirements
Many countries in the world require that you have a minimum of six-month validity on your passport. It may surprise you that after much preparation, you can be turned away by customs; putting an end to your travel before it even starts.
Please ensure that you renew your passports before the six-month validity period and check your destination’s other visa requirements for yourself and anyone traveling with you … including children.
Even experienced travelers can be guilty of this mistake. We often over-pack with our luggage containing only about 30% of the stuff we actually need.
Save yourself the stress of tossing heavy bags and incurring extra charges, be 100% certain that you only pack the items you need.
I have been guilty of the opposite many times – I tend to only hand carry but have on occasion forgotten necessities likes socks and underwear and had to go shopping.
- Not Booking Tickets in Advance
Have you ever wondered what you stand to benefit from having your ticket handy? Booking your ticket in advance will save you unnecessary queue, time, stress, and accord you the chance to go through the express line. The ideal time to book for ticket varies from country to country. Check for what works for your destination.
In addition to saving a copy on your electronic device, having the printed copy of your ticket will do you no harm. Technology is great, but it is not infallible; there could be a loss of access to the internet or your device could crash for unknown reasons.
- Exchanging Currency at the Airport
One of the most frequent mistakes travelers make is exchanging currency at expensive outlets. Traveling itself is costly, being overcharged for currency exchange make it worse.
Research the best places to exchange currency at your destination just before you take off. Some airport ATM offers a reasonable rate for credit card holders. The Banks in Taiwan airport actually seem to give the best rates in Taipei… but I know this from being unprepared.
- Traveling without Insurance
Having travel insurance can save you a lot of money, help you apply for visas, and offer cheap protection from injuries, theft, travel delays, cancellation, and more. Travel insurance provides good value for money it’s easy and cheap to obtain but 80% of travelers do not have it.
We may be biased as we provide Travel protection to all our members, but we see firsthand the regularity of claims and the expense involved. Don’t be the person who gets caught out.
- Overpaying for Connectivity
Data Roaming can be one of the biggest rip-offs that travelers face. Please make sure that your provider will give you access and that you know the cost before you travel. Every year thousands of people come home and then get outrageous bills because they didn’t realise Roaming was turned on, or they only got one email, or they didn’t use the internet but their phone kept updating apps etc etc. None of this is the Phone Companies problem.
Relying on free public Wi-Fi can be disappointing and risky, there are spoof internet systems available in hotels and coffee shops specifically designed to capture access to your device.
We provide our members with a FlexiRoam data roaming solution which can be turned on and off through an app. The primary benefit being that it can be topped up on the go wherever you are. Buying a local SIM card is the next best solution but can be a hassle to top up if it expires before you leave the country
- Unnecessary Assumptions
There may be a tendency to think that we know everything based on our own experiences and what we have read online. . . but when we are not sure we must remember to ask.
There is one memorable meal for me in Vietnam when I ate the decorative flowers on a dish thinking that they were edible like Nasturtiums – they weren’t. More embarrassingly the other 9 people on my table insisted on watching me start every dish to see what I would do after that
Don’t forget to check out our other articles like our 5 Favourite Travel Hacks