Whether you’re an avid traveler returning to a familiar overseas location or visiting a foreign country for the very first time, there are always a few international travel tips that are absolutely indispensable. The experts at Select Italy, the country’s premiere Italian travel resource, have provided advice for exploring the other side of the pond confidently, efficiently and safely with these travel tips.
1. Understand Travel Documents
Each country has different visitation requirements, so it is vital that you understand which documents are required for your trip. Make sure you have a valid visa (if needed), and that your passport is up to date. Also, make sure to apply for these travel documents well in advance as the registration process may take longer than expected.
2. Locate the American Embassy
It’s important to know the location of the US embassy when traveling overseas because it can be helpful for a variety of unfortunate situations, from losing a passport to legal issues. Also, register with the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program prior to departure; the agency can assist if something should go wrong.
3. Develop a Spending Plan
Before leaving, Inform your bank of any travel plans. This will avoid complications with credit or debit cards. For example, if your bank has overseas branches, you may receive a better exchange rate at an ATM as opposed to the hotel. Also, set a realistic budget to prevent splurging and impulse buys, but don’t forget to provide a cushion in case of an emergency.
4. Schedule Sightseeing
Planning ahead by booking a sightseeing tour or group is a great way to see the most revered historical sights. Advance reservations not only provide cheaper costs, they also prevent disappointment if tours are full upon arrival. Typically there are options that allow full access without any waiting in line.
5. Learn Key Phrases
Learning a few key phrases will not only impress the locals, it will serve as a helpful asset as well. Knowing how to ask where the nearest restroom or restaurant is will allow you to feel more comfortable and in control of your whereabouts.
6. Purchase Electrical Adaptors
If you’re planning on packing your blow dryer or electric toothbrush, there’s another amenity you mustn’t forget: the electrical adaptor. Buy one before arriving at your destination — not only are they hard to locate but if one is found, it’s likely to be overpriced.
7. Implement International Service
If you are planning on using your cell phone during your trip, you must first set up global roaming service with your provider before heading overseas. Another option is to rent a European cell phone for the length of the vacation for a minimal fee.
8. Understand Cultural Expectations
When traveling overseas, the best thing a foreign visitor can do is show respect. Before visiting, do some research to have a better understanding of the country’s culture and customs. If you want to feel comfortable in your new surroundings, make sure you understand what is expected of you.
9. Do Your Research
Research the local and national holidays of your destination. These celebrations could interfere with your travel plans as many offices, banks and stores will be closed. Pay attention to weather patterns and pack your clothing accordingly. Also be aware of extreme weather conditions that may hinder your plans.
10. Use an Accredited Tour Company
Planning your overseas vacation through an accredited touring company will allow you to make the most of your trip. By working with a specialized travel service, you can customize your travel itinerary with state-of-the-art tours and other unique activities. For example, Select Italy arranges specialized tours for our clients by providing carefully selected guides in a variety of destinations throughout Italy.