Just like first love, the first trip abroad always remains special. However, the fun can easily be spoiled by some careless oversights. Here are some handy tips to help you minimize problems by little planning before you board your first international flight.
– Always book tickets on a reliable airline. Check if they are offering any special fares or discounts. Check the tickets to ensure that what you have is a confirmed booking. It is not a good idea to land after your airport transfer vehicle left after waiting for you for hours.
– Find out details regarding size of baggage and weight allowed. Tag all bags with your name, address, phone number, date of travel, and flight number. Pack the bags yourself and ensure that they are all locked safely. Make two sets of keys.
– As a precaution pack documents, passport, medicines, and other immediate essentials in the carry on case. In case your luggage gets lost or misplaced in transit you will still have bare essentials.
– Make a note of your airline helpline, hotel number, agent number, guides name with numbers and local emergency/tourist helpline numbers. Remember there is a different 911 for every country. Make sure every passenger travelling also has a copy of the same.
– Call up the hotel and airport transfer service to confirm your reservations and inform them of any flight delays. It’s better not to surprise them.
– Religiously follow all security rules. Do not carry electronics, knives, batteries, or other banned items. All dangerous objects like razors, scissors, and so on must be put in your check in luggage.
– All electronic items like cell phones and laptops must be fully charged and in accordance to rules turned on for checking if asked. Use of cell phones while flying is prohibited. So do not plan or making or receiving calls when in flight.
– Take along a valid photo ID to the airport. Check whether you have your tickets.
– Always check the flight schedule before you leave the house. Make sure what the check-in-time is for your flight. Leave with plenty of time to spare. This way you won’t have to rush from one end of the airport to the other.
– It is against regulations for passengers to carry inflammables, aerosols, or household cleaners. Other prohibited items are: firearms even if you have a license, hunting rifles, baseball bats, golf clubs, pool cues, ski equipment, hockey sticks, darts, as well as bows and arrows. Because of terrorist threats it is advisable not to speak of hijackings, bomb threats, or other dangerous things. Be cautious about who you befriend. Never accept any letter or parcel to be delivered to persons known or unknown. Never leave your luggage unattended and if you do notice any abandoned parcel or luggage bring it to the notice of authorities. Be aware of what the weather conditions are like where you going and take clothes accordingly. Prepare well for your flight and enjoy it.
– The arrival time printed on your tickets would be as per the destination time-zone. Don’t get confused.
– Before leaving check online whether there are any diversions to be made at the airport or whether any new rules have been made. Most airports have easy to use websites. Refer to the site and find out where your terminal is and where your car is to be parked. If using public transport only use transportation services from official pick up points. The vehicles must have official markings.
– Don’t get conned by people who make offers of special privileges or deals. It’s not worth the risk in an unknown place.
– Learn a bit about the culture and geography of the place you are planning to visit. A quick google will give you useful local tips and suggestions from people who regularly visit the country.