The thought of boarding a plane to a destination far away from home, is without a doubt, high on many people’s priority list after the pandemic and quarantines have ended. However, often in the excitement of getting away and exploring foreign countries, it’s easy to overlook some essential precautions that you should take before traveling abroad.
So before booking that next international flight, here are five tips to consider before traveling abroad that can potentially save you a lot of time, money, and distress on your vacation.
- Buy International Travel Insurance
- Watch For Aggresive Airport Sales Traps
- Travel With Like-Minded Groups
- Get Insights From Other Travelers
- Don’t Be Afraid To Negotiate
1) Buy International Travel Insurance
Now more than ever, if you are embarking on adventures in foreign countries, it’s imperative that you purchase international travel insurance policies to cover your trip. The mistake that many people make is that they assume that if they buy all aspects of their trip on a single credit card, that they will be financially covered under any circumstances should something terrible occur, which isn’t always the case.
With a dedicated travel insurance policy, you will have peace of mind knowing that you will be covered if things like government lockdowns, theft, or severe illness occur. If you choose not to purchase a dedicated policy, make sure to review your current coverage on your credit card because these companies are known to make significant policy changes frequently, which could leave you in financial peril.
2) Watch For Aggressive Airport Sales Traps
While it may be exciting to finally land at the airport and start making your way towards the street, it’s important to know that you are a target of taxi, car rental, and vacation package companies that have kiosks located inside the terminal. They know that inbound travelers into the country are more than likely inexperienced and are more susceptible to high-pressure sales tactics.
For example, when visiting Cabo San Lucus, Mexico, a few years ago, we remember being bombarded with salespeople at the airport terminal’s exit trying high-pressure sales tactics to get us to purchase various products or services. While the salesmen were likely just honest people trying to make a living, it can feel very uncomfortable and takes many travelers completely by surprise.
Remember, in many foreign countries; the airport is a crucial sales center for many local businesses. When you land, make sure to have made arrangements for ground transportation beforehand, and don’t be afraid to say no to overly aggressive salespeople.
3) Travel With Like-Minded Groups
Not everyone travels with their family or close friends when leaving to go abroad, making it a good idea to make sure you are around people that share similar interests. The reason is that having everyone on the same page in terms of interest will inevitably make for a more pleasant, and in many cases, a safer experience.
For example, Blogs By Christian Women is an organization of ladies who share a deep interest in blogging and religion. So, it’s likely that this group will not have any reservations about spending some of their days visiting some of the famous religious sites in the region or taking pictures for their blogs. The lesson here is to travel with a group who shares similar passions, so fewer problems are deciding which local places to visit.
4) Get Insights From Other Travelers
The best way to prepare for a trip is to get insights from foreign travelers who have already visited the country in the past. It’s easy to fall in love with the fancy brochures and promotional videos, but the reality of a country is usually far different than the advertising would lead you to believe. Your overall impression of a country won’t just be your hotel or a tour, but how the city made you feel in general.
Try checking out travel forums or even YouTube videos to get real insights from experienced travelers about a place and the things you should look out for when arriving.
5) Don’t Be Afraid To Negotiate
In many smaller countries with a large small business footprint, it can be a lot easier to negotiate the prices for goods and services if you think there is a deal to be had. However, not all places are the same or the ability to haggle over prices. For example, when visiting places in Latin America, we found that there was more opportunity for negotiating the costs of services such as tours or little excursions than in other countries such a Canada.
If you are negotiating price with local merchants, always try to do so in good faith. Meaning, you don’t want to offend them by making a low-ball offer. Keep in mind that they also likely have a family to provide for as well. In general, there is typically more negotiating room between buyers and sellers when it comes to services than with physical products. This is because there generally is more profit margin to be made by the merchant.
Traveling Abroad With The Best Information
We hope this article has helped you become more knowledgeable about some of the pitfalls of traveling abroad. Visiting a foreign country can be a life-changing experience and well worth every penny. However, these tips, if followed, can guide you towards a more rewarding and fulfilling vacation.