Going away can of course be exciting, but it can also seem stressful getting everything ready and in one place. I am going to a different country on my own for the first time and I have found that there was so much more to do that I’d ever expected! Thus this post is aimed at people heading away for the first time, but even if that doesn’t apply to you I still hope it helps. Here are my 5 tips that I’ve learnt from the experience to try and help you out:
1. Get Prepared
Make sure that you get everything sorted out early. There were a lot of things I hadn’t even considered before planning my trip such as organising travel insurance and visas. These are the sorts of things it is important to think about early because sometimes the visa process can take a few weeks. Especially when done by post, it is important to leave yourself extra time for delays. Create a plan of what needs to be done for your trip – what to you need to bring with you? What arrangements need to be made? Do you need to have any vaccinations for the trip? This is another big question as some vaccinations require several months before they are effective. Just make sure that you are on top of everything so that you aren’t panicking at the last moment about that one thing you’ve forgotten.
2. Do Some Research
Now this seems pretty obvious that you’re (probably) not just going to fly to somewhere completely blind, but have you considered other things such as the differences in culture, food and even the type of money they use? It is nice to think about where you would actually like to visit when you get there, so that you have a clear plan of action and can organise your time away more effectively. But as well as the sights, be aware of some of the downsides too. If you’re going somewhere very touristy, be careful of scams. Be careful that you don’t head into a well known “dodgy” area and just make sure to keep yourself safe. If you just do a bit of deeper research into where you’re headed before you go, hopefully you can learn just a bit more about where you’re going.
3. Don’t Stress Yourself Out
This is important to remember both before you go while you are preparing for your visit as well as when you get there. Sometimes after doing all of your research and planning each day to the minute you need to remember that some things go wrong and there is nothing you can do about it. Maybe that one venue will be closed on that particular day, maybe it takes you longer to get from one place to the other than you thought. It doesn’t matter what it is, do panic too much about it. Remember to give yourself more time than you expect between activities. Even if one small thing goes wrong, does that really mean your whole trip is ruined? It hopefully shouldn’t.
4. Pack Efficiently
It can be tempting to pack everything in your closet thinking, oh I might wear that, but what is the point of dragging things across the world when you’re not even going to use them? I’m not saying to pack only one t shirt for a week long trip, but you don’t want to have to bring so many things that you are weighed down for the whole holiday. Of course you’re probably not going to have access to a washing machine while you’re away, and it is important to pack some spare things but just think about having to transport all of that luggage. Also, you do want to avoid excess baggage charges for overweight bags because this can be extremely pricey! You may also want some space in your suitcase to bring things back.
5. Enjoy Your Holiday!
Of course, this one is the most important. You’ve done all the preparation, got everything in order, it is finally time to relax and enjoy your time away.
So those were my tips, what are some of yours?