Vacation Prep – What Am I Forgetting?

So I leave on my vacation in just over two weeks (!) – and I haven’t really prepared anything1. This is what I’ve come up with for my “to do” list so far:

Vacation Prep - To Do List

My passport is ready to go and I don’t need visa for any of the countries I’m going to. Seasoned travellers, what am I forgetting?

Oh wait, I just remembered one thing: I will be doing tonnes of walking while I’m there, so if you have any recommendations for fashionable yet comfortable shoes, please let me know!

  1. Beyond booking the various pieces of the trip that is. []

7 Replies to “Vacation Prep – What Am I Forgetting?”

  1. Sounds like you’re good to go in terms of the essentials :). Some thoughts:
    – camera + extra battery
    – all electronic chargers and cords (so easy to forget these)
    – ear plugs (crying kids on the plane? hotel room location with lots of noise?)
    – photocopies of all major documents (passport, travel/medical insurance policies, credit cards, VISA/AMEX and insurance numbers, emergency contact info)- left with someone and a copy in your carry-on, kept safe at all time when you’re abroad
    – warm stuff- Ireland can get cold!

  2. Go to the bank and make sure your debit card will work overseas. I went to the UK in 2001, and when I got there I suddenly realized that I couldn’t take any cash out of the bank machines with my debit card. I could input the PIN, but it didn’t give me an option of an account to access. Luckily, I was staying with friends or I would been in some trouble.

    I had to call TD bank and it turns out that my one account was a checking account, and it needed be a savings account to be recognized in Europe. Or was it the other way around???

    Anyways, it WAS a long time ago, so I’m sure things have changed, but after that experience I definitely checked with the bank for the next trip!

  3. Once you know where you’re staying, do a bit of google-mapping and screencap shots of your local areas on your iPhone. That way, you can at least look at the picture of the map on your device for street names, etc. if/when you don’t have data (and it’s a good way to help others give you directions).

    I also second the suggestion to have hard-copies of all your important documents/confirmations. One bit of weirdness I’ve encountered a few times on various travels is the need to have a printout of your flight itinerary/booking confirmation to be allowed in the airport or to check in. I still don’t understand, but now I carry it with me.

    And yes, again, on confirming whether your bank card will work overseas if you plan on taking out cash here. Major banks (Barclays, Lloyds, HSBC) will take all cards on the Cirrus or Plus network. Check the icons on the back of your card.

    Lastly, I’ve purchased Ecco shoes for two trips now that involved a lot of walking, and recommend them highly!

  4. Rick is right: make sure someone here has copies of all your stuff too, just in case yours is lost or stolen. Calling your credit cards is smart. Nothing worse than being overseas and finding out your credit card is denied because they think it has been stolen. Have fun!

  5. Thanks so much for all the good advice, everyone! Being a travel neophyte, I appreciate being able to learn from the experiences of my more well-traveled friends!

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