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3 Travel Tips for Peace of Mind

What do you do if you are travelling abroad and ‘life happens’? Such as:

  • no access to wifi or ‘free-access’ is not working
  • unexpected rain storm
  • documents are lost to theft or forgotten in the transport that’s already left?
  • promised pick-up is nowhere in sight
  • Communication failure

It can be unsettling and may raise anxiety that is already on edge when you are in unfamiliar surroundings. In travel, as in life, prior preparation can help greatly in an emergency.

Here are 3 ways to prepare beforehand to secure your peace of mind for ‘just-in-case’:

1.Keep a digital copy of your key documents; i.e. an email sent to yourself and/or photos on your phone. e.g.

  • Passport
  • National ID and/or Driver’s License
  • Accommodation address and contact at your destination
  • Password protected file with a few emergency numbers that you may not have memorised, including your bank(s), in case your credit/debit cards need to be cancelled
  • Front side only of credit/debit cards (or the 16 digit number saved in the password protected file)

2. Have a printed hard copy within easy reach of:

  • Passport
  • Accommodation address and contact at your destination
  • Any other relevant info such as conference details, taxi or pick-up contact, etc.

3.Always have some small bills of universal travel currency (e.g. dollars, euro) or of local currency on you:

  • comes in very handy when you need to make an emergency call (e.g. by borrowing a phone from a taxi guy), or need to use a cyber to access digital documents stored on email (as a last resort, since use of public wifi is highly discouraged due to hacking risks)
  • for use in public or alternative transport if necessary
  • to give as tips to locals who might help you out of a tight spot

These have helped immensely in my extensive travels, especially having hardcopy of hotel address to show to immigration officers or taxi guys or if I’m lost. This way I avoid using my phone and possibly misplacing or losing it as well;

While I avoid changing money at airports (exchange rates are usually terrible), I will have a few small dollar bills (1$, 5$, 10$) to give a cabbie or good Samaritan willing to lend their phone. Many a time the pick-up has been delayed, and it’s reassuring to call the friend or hotel to confirm that they’re still ‘on the way’.

Note: These tips may be helpful even at home, as getting lost or robbed can happen there too!

Do you have digital or physical back up of your docs? If you don’t, consider creating time to do this sooner rather than later, especially before your next travel. You never know when these will come in handy in your movement, local or otherwise.

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