10 Common Mistakes People Make While Travelling

Save yourself from any traveling mishaps by reading up on these handy tips!

1. Failing to check passport dates. Renew your passport if it expires six months after your return. Check passport regulations for your destination country well in advance of your trip.

2. Forgetting to buy travel insurance. A travel insurance plan is a convenient and inexpensive protection from injuries or illness, passport and credit card theft, travel delays like missed flights, emergency evacuation and trip cancellations due to an emergency.

3. Booking tight connections. Whether your journey consists of flights with multiple layovers or catching a train or bus after your flight, it is better to have ample time in between connections to make sure you don’t miss the next leg. Factors such as weather, traffic and other uncontrollable events may affect your travel arrangements.

4. Packing the wrong items. There’s no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing, so be sure to check what the weather will be like at your destination. Pack a few essentials such as an emergency medical kit, torch, money belt, sunscreen and hand sanitiser and a copy of your prescriptions and doctor’s phone number.

5. Packing too many things. Don’t overload your bag with clothing you will never wear. Learn to pack smart, mix and match, bring a jacket for colder weather and ship what you buy rather than paying excess luggage at the airport.

6. Not having enough prescription meds. If you take prescription meds, make sure you bring enough refills for the duration of your trip. Your meds might not be available in your destination country, it might be more expensive and you might have unforeseen delays or extensions. It’s also recommended to have a copy of your Doctor’s script handy for any medication you’re carrying.

7. Forgetting travel adapters. The plug points in your home country might not be the same plugs used where you’re going. Make sure you check what it is and pack the correct adapter.

8. Getting ‘ripped off’. Tourists are often seen as soft targets by criminals. Be extra vigilant when in a foreign country by wearing your money belt under your shirt or jacket, knowing the route so taxi drivers don’t “take you for a ride”, and keeping your passport and other valuables in the hotel safe.

9. Forgetting to inform your bank or financial institutions. With the rise of identity theft and fraud, many banks and financial institutions have put procedures in place to protect you against fraud. They might lock you out of your account when they see unexpected charges appearing on your account from abroad. Always inform them of your travel plans and duration of stay.

10. Exchanging currency at the most expensive place. It is important to get the best possible rate for your money. Avoid exchanging currency at airports. Your bank might not offer the best rates, so check with your bank for charges when drawing from an ATM abroad and check with your credit card company about the costs of paying per swipe.