8 Tips For Preparing To Go Abroad

By Destinee Norman

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Before heading out into the great unknown it is always important to check every possible checklist online to make sure you have everything you could possibly need while away from home. Whether you study abroad, are traveling just for fun, or are going to work abroad for the summer, it is important to be prepared so you can kick back and enjoy the experience without all of the stress that comes with being in a new place.

1. Call the bank about credit and debit cards

There is nothing worse than getting abroad and making that first purchase on the day and realizing- uh oh- my card doesn’t work. Most credit/ debit card companies just need a quick call so they can turn your card back on, but it is even smoother when you call ahead of time.

2. Make copies of important documents

This includes your passport, visa, or whatever else you could possibly think of to need while in another country. It is also a good idea to leave these with a relative in the States just in case something happens!

3. Use Your Carry On Luggage Wisely

Always carry medications and valuables in your carry on luggage because you never know where your other luggage is going to end up. Valuables can easily be broken if in your checked baggage as well. It is also a good idea to leave one extra pack of clothes in your carry on as well!

4. Speaking of Valuables…

Bring adapters, converters, and all the cords you need before you go. We all know the story of the exploding hairdryer. It’s best just to leave that one a story. Bring adapters to help save all your electronics from the vicious voltage of another country’s electricity.

5. Communication is Key

Nothing is worse than getting to another country and realizing you have no way to communicate with people back home. Well, despite the outrageous fees that come with international calls if you aren’t careful! Look into different ways to keep your calls cheap and affordable. Many phone companies have some sort of international plan in place though sometimes it isn’t the cheapest. I’d recommend just getting a sim card from your host country and setting up calls through that for just a bit every month.

6. Don’t Forget That You Have a Home To Get Back To

Everyone knows that great feeling of coming back home after a long day away to a nice clean house, fresh sheets, and a nice easy to cook meal. Don’t miss out on this feeling when you come back from being abroad! Make sure you clean your house, wash your sheets, and please throw away all that gross food that won’t last until you get back.

7. Don’t Be That Person Who Changes in The Airport Bathroom

All I am saying is CHECK THE WEATHER! There is no issue with getting into some better clothes once you get abroad and realize you are nowhere close to dressed for the occasion, but it’s definitely easier if you plan as much as you can ahead of time. No one likes those little annoying bumps in the road of all your plans. Plus you might be in a hurry to get to your next location! Like the hotel to take a nap.

8. Lastly, Try to Pack For The Trip Ahead and Not For The Apocalypse

Do you really need five pairs of shoes for a two week vacation? Probably not! Will you also need some room for purchases abroad? Of course! Try to pack for the vacation ahead by bringing a minimal amount of things. The more you bring, the more fees you pay. Plus it’s always a good rule to be able to carry all of your own luggage comfortably. Make sure you leave enough room for extra purchases too and don’t forget to leave the nail trimmers at home!