Ready for your next big adventure? Traveling to new destinations and exploring new things is truly incredible but, if you’re not properly prepared, it can also be pretty stressful. Don’t worry, though, I’m here to help! Here’s my ultimate international travel checklist with 12 essentials to ensure you’re fully prepared for your next world trip.
12 Things Needed for International Travel
First thing first: when it comes to your international travel checklist, your passport is one of the most crucial things you need to bring along. So, double-check the expiration date on that bad boy and make sure it has enough blank pages for all those entries and exit stamps you’ll be collecting.
Just keep in mind, many countries require that your passport has at least 6 months of validity before it expires. Don’t want any hiccups at the border, right?
2. Visa Requirements
Before you start packing your bags, check the visa requirements for your destination country. Some countries require a visa for entry, while others do not. Trust me, the last thing you want is to arrive at the border only to be turned away because you didn’t have the right visa. So, be sure to check the requirements ahead of time and obtain a visa if one is required.
3. International Driver’s License
If you’re planning to rent a car during your travels, you may need an international driver’s license. This license is recognized in many countries and allows you to legally drive in your destination country. Thus, even if you’re not planning to drive, you never know what’s going to happen so it’s wise to obtain an international driver’s license to be on the safe side.
4. Bank Cards
Having the right debit or credit card can make a huge difference among the essential things needed for international travel.
If you’re looking for a smart way to handle your money while traveling, a card like Revolut is a great choice. With this card, you can spend and withdraw cash abroad with minimal to no fees, depending on the plan you select. For instance, with the premium plan, which is under 10 euros per month, you can withdraw up to 400 euros without having to worry about ATM fees. And the best part? Subscribing to Revolut is a breeze and they even send you a replacement card anywhere in the world if you happen to lose it while exploring. How convenient is that!
With the right card, you can save a lot of money on foreign transaction fees and exchange rate markups, and maybe help you stretch your travel budget a little further. And click here for more money-saving tips while traveling.
5. Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is a no-brainer for any extended trip. It’s like a safety net that protects you from any unexpected events such as trip cancellations, lost or stolen luggage, and medical emergencies. So, before you take off, do some research on different travel insurance options and choose one that works best for you.
Personally, I always opt for repatriation coverage, as that’s one of my top priorities. There are plenty of travel insurance options out there, so you’re bound to find one that suits your needs. My go-to recommendation is SafetyWing.
6. Learn Some Basic Phrases
Immerse yourself in the local culture by brushing up on a few basic phrases in the local language. Not only will it make navigating easier, but it’ll also make a lasting impression with the locals. Imagine being able to confidently order your favorite dish in the local language or strike up a conversation with a local vendor.
Even though my Spanish was far from perfect, it made a big impact during my travels in Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras where locals appreciated the effort. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to practice. A small effort like this goes a long way in enhancing your travel experience.
7. Research Your Destination
Before you hit the road, spend some time getting to know your destination. This means familiarizing yourself with the local customs, laws, and culture, as well as any potential health or safety concerns. The more you know, the better prepared you’ll be and the more memorable your trip will be. So, do your research and make the most of your travels!
8. Book Your First Nights Accommodation
One of the best things needed for international travel is to book your first few nights accommodation in advance. Trust me, after a long flight, the last thing you want to do is wander around looking for a place to stay. By having your first few nights sorted, you’ll give yourself time to adjust, catch up on some rest, and start exploring your destination with a clear mind.
So, don’t wait until you land to start thinking about where you’ll sleep – get ahead of the game and book your first few nights of accommodation now so you can tick it off your international travel checklist!
9. Universal Travel Adapter & Portable Charger
Don’t get caught with a dead phone in a foreign country! Make sure you pack a universal travel adapter and a portable charger before you hit the road.
With a universal travel adapter, you’ll be able to charge all of your electronics in different countries and stay connected, no matter where your travels take you. And a portable charger is a lifesaver for those times when you’re on the go and need a quick power boost for your devices. You won’t regret investing in these two travel essentials and having them by your side.
10. Thread and Needle Travel Kit
It might not be the first item you think of when gathering the things needed for international travel, but won’t regret having a small thread and needle travel kit. It comes in handy for those little clothing emergencies, such as fixing a tear or mending a broken zipper. Plus, you’ll be the hero of the day if someone needs help removing their SIM card from their phone. So, don’t skip this one on your international travel checklist, pack it in your bag and be prepared for anything.
11. Pack Light
Packing light is easier said than done, but it’s a game-changer when it comes to travel. Not only does it make it easier to get around, but it also saves you money on baggage fees.
Some folks can even travel with just a carry-on! While I haven’t quite mastered that yet, I always make sure to pack (almost) only what I need and leave the rest behind. Plus, having a bit of extra space in your luggage means you can bring back some souvenirs or gifts.
Just make sure to keep important items like swimwear in your carry-on in case your checked luggage gets lost or delayed, so you’re ready to enjoy your first day no matter what!
12. Make Copies of Important Documents
Last tip of this international travel checklist: take the extra step to ensure a worry-free trip and make copies of all your important travel documents, like your passport, visa, travel insurance, and itinerary. You’ll thank yourself later if anything goes missing.
Keep these copies in a secure location, whether in your backpack or on the cloud, and have peace of mind knowing that you’re covered. It’s always better to be safe than sorry when traveling!
Final Thoughts on the Things Needed for International Travel
Being prepared is the key to having a successful and memorable long trip. With the tips and recommendations provided in this international travel checklist, you’ll be able to pack smart and tackle any challenges that may come your way.
And don’t forget: the beauty of travel is about embracing the unexpected, learning life lessons, trying new things, and creating new memories. So, be open to new experiences, try different foods, and be willing to adjust your itinerary as you go.
Now that you’re equipped with these essential travel tips, it’s time to start planning your next adventure.