Here are some tips that I have found helpful or tips that I wished I had done. If you have a great travel tip, then please leave a comment. I’d love to add yours to the list.
1. Keep maps and city guides: I put all of my guides in a folder labeled with the city name. This is a great resource for planning the next trip.
2. Keep a bit of the local currency: This is good for two reasons. First, there are often unexpected small expenses ( your flight or train is delayed for hours and you want a drink-and who wants to use a credit card for $3.00?). Second, when you or a family member travels to this place again, you will have some money in your pocket when you land. It’s is especially true for Euros. For another good reason, see “Bye, Bye Budapest”.
3. Keep all receipts and paperwork: I designate one pouch in a bag for all receipts. Baggage claim tags, boarding passes, hotel statements; I keep me all. It helps when you return home and try to reconcile your credit card statements and if you leave something on a plane, they will want to know your flight and seat number.
4. Keep a hard copy of important information: this one recently bit me in the hind end. I arrived at the airport expecting to be picked up and no one showed. All of my contact info was in my email and there was no wifi. I was not in a good place and it was totally my fault.
5. Make copies of your passport. Leave one at home and keep the other one in a separate bag from your original passport. If your bag gets lost or stolen, then you can take a copy of your passport to the local embassy.
6. Ear plugs. At some point you will need them.
7. Download a currency converter and world clock app.
8. Travel sized package of wet wipes: worth the investment.
9. Don’t get currency at the airport exchange booths. Use an ATM card for the best rates.
10. Give a copy of your itinerary to a loved one that is not traveling with you.
11. I always pack a small bottle of laundry detergent.
12. You probably packed too many clothes. Leave room for that one-of-a-kind shirt, dress or shoes that you discover at your destination.
13. Pack an empty duffle bag or collapsible bag in your suitcase. I learned this one from my hubby. You will inevitably return with more items than you left with. You will be glad for the extra bag.
14. I pack a small coin purse for each currency. When paying, I don’t have to sift through several currencies to find the right change.
15. I always pack a large scarf. There are many uses: light blanket, rolled up into a pillow, protection from light snow or drizzle, a shoulder covering for visiting a sanctuary, a shawl for a chilly moonlit stroll, a seat cover for a really cold metal chair, etc.