Going on vacation is supposed to be a relaxing way to escape your everyday stressors. While you should be able to look forward to touring your new destination, there are still a few things you’ll want to consider to make sure that nothing goes wrong. Being proactive about these five common vacation mishaps will help you maximize every minute of your trip.
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Guard Against Travel Theft
Dressing like a tourist is one way to stick out like a sore thumb to thieves, but you are still at risk even if you resist wearing binoculars around your neck. Thieves commonly look for people who are distracted at airports, hotels, and popular tourist spots. Pickpocketers can be surprisingly fast. All it takes is looking away for one second for them to sneak something valuable from your possession. If possible, try to leave any expensive jewelry or electronics behind. You can leave them at home or inside a lock box in your hotel room. Also, create a list of the items that you have to bring along. If a theft occurs, this list will make it easier to notice something is missing right away, and file a police report or insurance claim thereafter.
Know Who to Call When You’re Sick
In a perfect world, you would never have to worry about falling ill on your vacation. Yet, traveling is known to increase your risk of catching a food-borne illness or other type of malady. There is also a heightened risk of accidents when you are interacting with unfamiliar places or doing adventurous activities. While medical care should be available in most areas, it might not be up to the standards that you are used to when you’re traveling internationally. Researching cross-border treatment providers before you travel will help you get health care when you’re far away from home.
Research the Most Common Scams
Spending time abroad also opens you up to being around a whole new set of people, some of which may want to take advantage of your curiosity. Taking a moment to brush up on the most common types of scams that you’ll encounter in the country that you plan to visit helps you be prepared to handle potentially risky situations. For example, knowing that someone’s offer to help you clean your soiled clothing is likely an opportunity to pickpocket makes it easier to know when to be assertive about them leaving you alone. Tourists often worry more about being rude than being safe. Although it might feel strange to quickly walk away from someone acting helpful, this might be your best bet for avoiding becoming a victim.
Prepare to Handle Foul Weather
There is nothing worse than having an itinerary filled with exciting outdoor adventures only to wake up and discover that it is storming outside. You can head off this problem by trying to plan your vacation to take place during a time when the climate is milder. Spending some time researching the overall weather patterns can also help you plan to pack efficiently. Winter coats might be bulky, but you’ll be glad you have one if the weather is extremely cold, and you can’t beat having a packable rain poncho in your day bag. As a final precaution, have a few ideas for things you can do if an excursion gets canceled. Spending your day in a museum or touring a local art gallery gives you a way to still enjoy the day, even if you can’t do what you planned.
Make Sure Your Credit Cards Work
Traveling abroad often means having to use completely different financial systems. Most major banks and credit card companies also have safeguards in place that are meant to help prevent identity theft. While it’s great to know that a financial institution will put a hold on a card in cases of suspected fraud, it is not so much fun when it happens just after you’ve dined in an international restaurant. Take a moment to contact any financial institutions that you have accounts with that you plan to use on your trip. Informing them of your vacation helps to avoid having access to your card blocked at the worst possible time. You’ll also want to carry some cash just in case your card won’t work with the systems they use in your destination.
Instead of worrying about what will go wrong on your next vacation, it is best to be proactive just in case something does. Preparing for potential issues is just as important as creating an itinerary of all the fun things you’ll get into. As you finalize your preparations, remember that staying healthy and safe is essential to have fun. This way you’ll be able to sit back and soak up the beauty of your vacation destination.