So you’ve booked your trip and planned an amazing itinerary. With all of your focus on achieving the perfect vacation, don’t forget to start off on the right foot. Below is a list of items to consider from a few days to immediately before you leave for your trip. Happy travels!
A Few Days Before
- Arrange a pet or house sitter, if necessary
- Alert your bank if you plan on using your credit or debit cards while on vacation. Then you don’t have to worry about your card being declined due to suspicious out of town activity.
- Photocopy your passports and credit cards if traveling abroad. This is a good idea just in case your wallet/purse gets stolen. It’s easier to get a new passport with a copy of the old one on hand, and you can contact your credit card company quicker if you already have the back of the card photocopied where the customer service phone number is located. If you want to be extra safe, you can also do this when traveling in the states, although there is a much smaller probability of your wallet/purse getting stolen.
- Make a paper copy of your itinerary with addresses and other relevant information and email it to yourself. There have been times where my phone didn’t get service in a particular location, and it’s awfully handy to have a paper copy ready to go.
- Ensure you have a paper copy of all your travel confirmations printed and emailed to yourself. For the same reasons above, make a copy just in case.
- Download movies, books, games and/or music on your phone or tablet. Help make a long flight go by so much faster by having a variety of activities in your boredom fighting arsenal.
A Day or Two to Immediately Before
- Consult my Packing Checklist in the Resources section. It might not cover everything you need, but it’s a great place to start.
- Hold your mail and newspapers. Nothing tells the whole neighborhood “I’m out of town” like a mailbox busting out the seams and a driveway full of newspapers. You can hold your mail by going to USPS.com and clicking on Track & Manage/Hold Mail. Contact your newspaper company to temporarily shut off your service.
- Adjust your home thermostat to save some energy while you’re away. The houseplants and pets don’t mind if you keep the house a little cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer when you’re not home.
- Check on your flight times to ensure they haven’t changed. Go to your airline website and type in your flight information. Sometimes the flight arrival and departure times can change pretty dramatically.
- Visit the ATM and make sure you have enough cash for your trip. Tips, entry fees, and a coffee in the airport all add up quickly, so if you rely on cash during your trip, plan accordingly.
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