For some people, the only true essential travel items are their passport, a bundle of cash and a toothbrush. For those of us less inclined towards whim and fancy (and who don’t want to burden our loved ones with the repatriation costs of our mortal remains should we tread on an abandoned landmine while wandering off road to find a cosy place to take a leak) there are other things which may fall into this category.
Top of the list – for fear of sounding like, well, an insurance underwriter – has to be travel insurance. Having been born and bred in the UK it is sometimes easy to forget that medical treatment is actually flipping expensive in most other areas of the globe. Especially if travelling to the United States, where medical costs are astronomical, or anywhere where you wouldn’t fancy chancing the “local” facilities over the pricey private alternatives, travel insurance comes highly recommended.
The good news is, there are so many providers creating a highly competitive market place that travel insurance really isn’t that expensive these days, even if you’re planning to indulge in dangerous activities, extended adventures or if you’re over 65 years of age.
So, you’ve got your passport, toothbrush and insurance. What else do you need? Well clothes always tend to make things that bit more comfortable, but we’ll assume you would already have factored that into your preparations.
As such the main areas for examination under the category of “travel essentials” would include such things as travel money; the transport itself (both getting to your destination(s) and getting around once there); places to stay (whether top end hotels, guesthouses, hostels, campsites, yurts, pods, holes in the ground or whatever); events, tours, safaris and the like, that is “stuff to do”; and finally, and this is a biggy depending on your destination, visa arrangements and jabs and/or necessary medication, such as anti-malaria tablets.
Sorting out a visa need not be as much hassle as it sounds, but it is clearly a true essential if you want to travel to certain areas of the world. Depending on your passport you might be lucky in that you won’t need any specific documentation (other than said passport) to be permitted entry, but if you plan to visit certain countries you will need to plan ahead in order to get your visa in good time (and avoid spending hours if not days queuing outside the applicable embassy).
For a basic overview of the entry requirements for your destination, check out the British Government’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office Travel Advice (that is, assuming you have a British passport), or simply contact the embassy of the country to which you would like to travel.
So whether “essential” to you means luxury hotels and concierge service, or just a map and a credit card, check out our latest articles for advice, ideas and information with the aim of making your trip as hassle free as possible.
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