Before You Travel
When planning for a long trip, it takes quite a bit of research. Sometimes it takes me 3-4 months since I have a full time job, I only have my nights to research and plan. From the use of the internet, travel books, family, and friends, it helps you learn about what you’re getting into. I use Google Docs and Google Calendar to help organize our plans. In case of any situations, we also share our documents with important family members before leaving for any trip.
Checklist of things to do before a big trip
Make sure your Hep A/B and Tetanus Shots are up to date
Double check Passport expiration date, certain countries require at least 6 months
Purchase Medical, Travel, and Electronics Insurance
Double check if Tourist Visas are needed in countries you plan to visit
International Drivers Permit
Do you need to drive while abroad? You’ll need to obtain an international drivers permit via AAA Office
If you are comfortable with using specific toiletries, bring them with you. Items such as shampoos, skin care, sanitizer, and feminine products may not be sold in another country.
First Aid Kit
A First Aid Kit is a must, you just never know when you’ll need it
Over the counter American drugs
You may not be familiar with what another country sells or may not work as effectively. When something happens, you can quickly refer to these OTC Drugs: Tylenol, Advil, Pepto Bismol or Imodium AD, Benedryl
Can sometimes be available over the counter in most Asian Drug Stores. Amoxicillin antibiotic to treat infections can sometimes be very handy while traveling.
Most of us use our smartphones, but if you decide to travel in a remote and off the beaten path location, a smartphone may be too flashy in 3rd World Countries. In respect to the area, avoid flaunting your wealth, having a hand held calculator for easy currency calculations, etc. is a nice to have.
Ziplock and garbage bags
I’ve traveled during rainy season before and my baggages and all contents inside were soaked and colors bled. If you don’t have a hard top suitcase, try to wrap your things in ziplock bags and garbage bags. Extra ziplock bags are also nice to have when you want to wrap up snacks or toiletries while on-the-go touring around.
Photo above by Jackie Rueda