We’ve put together this travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe whilst you are there.
Before you go:
- Travelling within the EU? Then get a free European Health Insurance Card for free or reduced emergency care - you still need full travel insurance though. Also remember, you can call 112 to contact the emergency services in any EU country.
- Check our travel advice pages for the country you are visiting. Find out where the nearest Embassy will be – check their website to find out what services they offer and their opening times
- Don’t travel without insurance – make sure it covers you for any activities you are likely to undertake such as extreme or water sports
- Make sure you’ve got correct visas for the country you are visiting and that your passport is valid. For certain countries your passport must be valid for 6 months after the date you travel – check the entry requirements before you go.
- Take photocopies of your passport and other important documents and keep these separate from the originals when you travel, and/or store them online using a secure data storage site. make sure you fill in the emergency contact details in your passport.
- Tell a friend or relative where you are going and for how long - give them some idea of your itinerary if possible and an emergency contact number.
- Take enough money for your trip and some back-up funds in a mix of cash and travellers cheques - make a note of the cheques’ numbers.
- Before you go invest in a good travel guide to help you plan your trip.
- Driving abroad? Make sure your licence is current and valid. Make sure you are aware of the driving laws in the country you are visiting.
When you are away:
- Check whether it’s safe to drink local tap water- if not, stick to bottled water and avoid salads, non-peeling fruit and ice in drinks.
- Don’t openly display valuables such as mobile phones or digital cameras and consider using a padlock on suitcases or backpacks.
- Find out about local customs and dress, behave accordingly and obey local laws - there may be serious penalties for breaking a law that might seem trivial at home.
- Be careful when taking photographs, videos or using binoculars. Such activities may be misunderstood, especially near military installations.
- Consider taking your mobile phone with you or renting one while you’re away. Store useful numbers such as the local police and the nearest embassy or consulate. Check with your service provider to make sure your phone works abroad.
- Use your judgement when buying and eating food you’ve not prepared yourself.
- Respect the environment – don’t buy wildlife souvenirs, conserve resources like water and don’t drop litter.