Do you use a travel checklist? If not, then this scenario probably sounds familiar. You’re halfway to the airport and realize you forgot something you need for your trip. Sometimes it’s nothing important, or just something you can pick up in the airport or hotel gift shop, but sometimes it’s a very important item like your driver’s license or passport. Ugh! Now you have to turn around and go back home to get the needed item. Let’s hope you don’t miss your plane!
Before setting off on your trip, consult this travel checklist complete with airline and vacation travel tips.
Reservations: Confirm your reservations for flight, hotel, and rental car. Most of the time you will not encounter any problems, but on the rare occasion you do, it’s much easier to fix prior to your vacation rather than after you’re already on your way.
Passport: Make sure you have your passport and also check to see that it has not expired. For certain countries your passport must be valid for six months after the date you travel so verify this before you leave. Also make sure you fill in the emergency contact details in your passport.
Airline Tickets or E-Ticket: If you don’t have a physical ticket, confirm your E-ticket with the airline before you leave.
Visa: If required.
Travel Insurance: Consider whether you want to purchase travel insurance and make sure you have these documents.
Driver License: Don’t leave this at home and make sure it is not expired. Be aware of the driving laws where you plan to visit.
Auto Insurance Card: If you are renting a car you will need this.
Copies of Important Documents: Keep copies of important documents in a separate location than the originals.
Local Currency: If you are traveling out of the country, be sure to have some local currency on hand.
Credit Cards: I recommend keeping at least one emergency credit card with you at all times. Call the credit card company if you are going out of the country and let them know.
Adaptor/Plug: If leaving the country, check to see what type of adaptor you may need and take this with you.
Language Phrase Book: If you are headed to another country, bring along a phrase book to help with communication.
Medication: Be sure to pack your medications especially if they are prescription. Keep them in your carry-on for safekeeping.
Glasses or Contact Lenses and Cleaner: Don’t forget these.
Tell a Friend or Relative Where you will Be: Give someone the details of your trip and an idea of where you will be in case of emergency.
Travel Guide: Pick up a good travel guide to wherever you are going.
Vaccinations: Check with your physician to see if you or your kids need any vaccinations if you are traveling abroad.
Cell Phone: Keep a mobile phone with you and make sure you know what you’ll be charged as far as roaming fees. Nothing worse than arriving back home to a huge cell phone bill. If you are traveling internationally, make sure your phone will work. Don’t forget your charger.
Prepaid Phone Card: Good to have just in case.
Contact Numbers to Report Lost Credit Cards or Traveler’s Checks: If you lose your wallet you’ll want to have the phone numbers readily available. Keep the numbers in a separate place.
Guide Maps: If you are going somewhere unfamiliar, get an up-to-date map to take along.
Reading Material or Audio Books: Bring along a book or magazine for the plane trip. Or if you have a music player, try an audio book.
Journal: A journal or notebook for your trip is fun, and is a great way to remember the details.
Addresses of Friends and Relatives: You might want to send a postcard.
Camera: Don’t forget your cameras and take along your manual too. Also of course batteries, film, memory cards, chargers, etc.
Binoculars: Depending on where you are going, you might find these useful.
Travel Alarm Clock: Most hotels these days provide an alarm clock but it’s good to take a small one along with you just in case.
Plastic Bags for Dirty Laundry: Keep your dirty clothes separate, just stuff them into a plastic bag. You’ll find they take up less space in your suitcase this way too.
Travel Pillow: These are great for the plane. Buy them beforehand or you will pay extra at the airport.
Extra Suitcase: For carrying home all of your souvenirs.