Eight Ways to Prepare for Your Overseas Trip

Before you head off overseas, there’s a list of ‘must-do’ things you need to organise. The golden rule is to start early. The more prepared you are, the less stress you’ll feel and the less likely it is that you will forget something vital.

Sort out your currency needs

currency notes

Don’t make the same mistake that many travellers make. Take care of your currency needs early and lock-in a terrific rate. You’ll usually pay more to exchange money at the airport. Choose a currency exchange service that charges no fees or commissions.

Check if the currency you need is available. Most people are surprised that banks usually stock a limited amount of currencies, in limited values. At Crown Currency Exchange, we keep over 80 currencies in stock. From AED to ZAR, we have you covered!

Our top currency tips:

  • Do you plan to pay by direct deposit? Allow at least a few days for your payment to be processed.
  • Find out the official currency for your destination and purchase it before your trip.
  • Find out which currencies you need for stopovers.
  • There is no limit to the amount of currency you can bring in or out of Australia. You must, however, declare amounts of $10,000 or more.
  • Inform your bank of your travels. You don’t want your credit card cancelled while you’re abroad.

Travel insurance

Accidents can happen to anyone. Without travel insurance, you are personally liable for covering your medical costs. These costs can run into the hundreds of thousands. Every year, there are horror stories of travellers who have needed costly medical care abroad and haven’t had travel insurance. Even when Australia has reciprocal medical treatment arrangements with some countries, you may be out of pocket with unexpected co-payments. It is essential that you take out travel insurance regardless of where you are travelling.

Even worse than not having insurance, is being inadequately covered. Are you going white water rafting in Zambia? Planning to go bungee jumping? Then, you need to be extra diligent with your travel insurance.

What you need to consider:

  • Are you travelling with valuables?
  • Are you doing sports or dangerous activities during your trip?
  • What type of medical coverage will you need?
  • Have you got a pre-existing medical condition?
  •  Would you like an insurance policy that covers yourself and other family members?

Passports

Australian passport - preparing for travels

You need to allow at least three weeks to get a new passport. Up to three months before your trip is wise! If you need to travel urgently, you can use the Australian Government’s passport priority service.

Check if your passport has expired or is near to expiration. Some foreign governments require you to have a passport with at least six months validity beyond your intended stay. Without this, you may not be allowed to enter certain countries. One thing that some travellers don’t consider is the number of pages left in their passport. Did you know that it’s not possible to add extra pages to your passport? If you haven’t got enough pages, you’ll need to order another passport before your trip.

A possible cause of delay for your application is that you will need to provide original documents or certified copies. Birth extracts and ceremonial marriage certificates are not acceptable. Leave ample time to order the official documentation you need.

Visas

Do you need a visa for where you are travelling? If you do, then ensure that you leave enough time to process and receive them. A lengthy stopover, in another country, may also require a visa.

Pets

Your fur baby is a valuable member of your family. If you plan to leave your pet at home, then don’t leave them alone. A trusted friend, neighbour or pet minder will look after the needs of your pet.

The benefits of having someone look after your pet at home is that your pet will be more settled, will be better behaved, while someone can collect your letterbox and check that your house is safe.

A kennel or professional pet minding facility can be a good experience for your pet. Although these services may be expensive, they also have the expertise to know how to look after your pet. Visit the facility first, read online reviews and trust your instinct. Does it feel like a place that will make your pet feel comfortable? Is there enough space and staff to meet your pet’s needs?

Visit a doctor

Before you leave for your trip, a trip to the doctor is in order. Make sure you have the medications you need to cover the time you are away. Some medications will get you in trouble in other countries. Have you been sick recently and is it safe for you to travel?

A specialist travel doctor will know which vaccinations you need for the destinations you’ll be visiting. Taking care of these early to give yourself enough time to recover from side effects and ensure that the vaccinations have kicked in.

Photocopy important documents

Keep copies of your passport and travel documents in a safe place. Leave a few copies with family and friends. Give them a copy of your itinerary in case of an emergency.

Be a Smart Traveller

Register your travel and contact details with Smart Traveller. You never know when disaster will hit. Be prepared for every scenario.

Crown Currency can help you prepare for a successful overseas trip. With over 80 currencies in stock, we offer you unbeatable rates and charge no commission or fees. Start early! Request a quote today.


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Australian passport - preparing for travels
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