Last minute travel
Life is full of surprises, isn’t it? One surprise many of us dislike is having to prepare for a sudden departure. Whether it’s travel for business or family reasons, being methodical makes all the difference between a successful trip and a nightmare!
1. Get organised
The first thing on your list? Make a list! Write a list of:
- Things you cannot do without
- People at home who you need to tell
- People at the other end you need to co-ordinate: arrival times, where you’ll be staying, for how long and so on
- Confirm your flights, hotel, hotel contact information and the weather at the other end, so you know what to pack
2. Gather the right documentation
- Get all the papers and documents you’ll need for your trip
- Make sure your passport is up to date and not due to expire while you’re away
- Find out if you need any vaccination or medical documents, things like Yellow Fever Certificates for entry into the country
- List essential contact numbers for people back home so you have the details you need in an emergency and can keep in touch with friends and family
- Find your travel insurance details, driver’s license, ATM card and any other important documents
- Take a photocopy of everything so you have a record if any of your paperwork gets lost or stolen
- Note down the address and contact details of the nearest British Embassy
- Make a note of where the nearest hospital is in your country of destination, just to be on the safe side
3. Vaccinations and medication
It is sensible to come and see us at least six weeks before you travel, although we understand that this isn’t always possible when you haven’t had much notice.
If you don’t have six weeks’ notice, come and see us anyway. It’s almost always better to have vaccinations late than never, even if it’s right at the last minute.
Call to make an appointment with one of our Travel Clinics in London. We’ll give you the vaccinations you need and answer your travel health questions.
Make an appointment with your Doctor for a quick check-up and get renewals if you’re taking prescription medications. Some countries demand written proof from your GP, which they might ask you about at Customs.
- Once you’ve finished preparing your checklist, review it and remove anything that isn’t 100% necessary
- Simplify your wardrobe too, packing the minimum and making sure the basic items you pack can be worn together to create different outfits
- Pack as few pairs of shoes as possible
- Most hotels provide a hair dryer, so leave yours behind
- If you’re there for more than three days you can get your clothes cleaned or washed so you don’t need to take so much with you
Do as much as you can beforehand to make your trip easier:
- Book your rental car so it’s ready and waiting for you at the airport
- Double-check your flight times and let the right people know your return date
- If you’re travelling to North America, bring an International Phone Card or let your mobile provider know you might want to make calls abroad,
- Remember your mobile charger plus chargers or spare batteries for any other gadgets you’re taking with you
- Relax before you leave so you travel with a clear head: a good walk or a massage works wonders