5 Tips for Traveling Abroad

  • 1. Get Familiar with Your Destination

    • Learn local laws for where you will be visiting.

    • Research any Travel Warnings or Advisories

    • This is a helpful link to look up before you travel:

  • 2. Inform Others of Your Travel

    • Register for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program before you leave, so in case of emergency, you can be reached.

    • Notify family/friends of your travel plans and leave them copies of Documents and your Itinerary

  • 3. Get All Your Travel Documents Together

    • Check this site for passport and visa information: http://travel.state.gov/(Note that some countries require that a traveler’s U.S. passport be valid 6 months or longer after the completion date of your vacation.)

    • Be sure to research if any vaccinations are required before you travel, this is a helpful site for vaccination information: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/page/vaccinations.htm

    •Be Aware of Additional Fees

    • All International flights are subject to U.S. immigration and custom fees.
    • Many countries have departure fees that are collected at the time of ticket purchase or upon exiting the foreign country.
    • Plan to have cash on you for these fees, credit cards may be difficult to use in the country you are visiting.
  • 4. To Take or Not to Take

    Do Not Take

    • Do not take valuable jewelry
    • Irreplaceable family objects
    • All unnecessary credit cards
    • Social Security Card, Library Card, and similar items you may keep in your wallet

    Do Take

    • Medical Necessities
    • Copies of passport identification, airline tickets, driver’s license and credit cards you plan to take. (Carry your copy separate from the originals in case the originals are lost)
    • Plan for the Unexpected, take extra money, medications or daily needs
    • A list of emergency contact numbers. In case your cell phone is lost, keep a list of emergency numbers you may need. For example, your family’s contact numbers and phone numbers for the Office of Overseas Citizens Services, U.S. embassies, consulates and consular agencies.
    • Here is a link to how the Department of State can help you in case of an emergency: http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/emergencies/emergencies_1212.html
  • 5. Be Responsible for Your Health!

    • Insurance, Medicare & Medicaid, Medical Evacuation

    • Most U.S. medical insurance does not cover you outside of the U.S., nor does Medicare or Medicaid. Check with your insurance to see if you are covered.
    • Consider purchasing a short-term insurance policy that will cover you.

    • Anyone with preexisting medical conditions should carry a letter from their physician describing the medical condition and any prescription medications, including generic names of their prescribed drugs.

    • Leave all prescriptions in their original containers and make sure they are clearly labeled.

    • Check with foreign embassies to make sure any required medication is not considered illegal narcotics

    • If you wear eyeglasses be sure to bring an extra pair.

    •Here is a website to help with Medical Information for Americans Abroad: http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/brochures/brochures_1215.html

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