Things you need to know before you go
Arranging a trip with your mates is stressful enough. The organisational challenges are multiplied when travelling abroad, so you’ll need to be extra prepared if you plan on going overseas. We’ve put together a list of important things that can easily get forgotten in the excitement of coordinating the trip of a lifetime.
Visas and Passport:
Do you need visas and passports to travel? Is your passport valid until at least your return date? Some countries require that it is valid
for a further 6 months after that, so be sure to find out if that is the case for your destination. Check this well in advance so people have time to get
theirs renewed if they have to.
This is not just for in case you lose your suitcase of naughty postcards (those are, collectibles, right?), this is a guard against the mistakes of other people. It doesn’t matter how careful you are with your valuables, there will always be a strike, a cancelled flight or an absent-minded baggage handler to contend with. Plus, there’s always that ‘hole-in-one’ insurance just in case you’re a whizz on the golf course.
EHIC (European Health Insurance Card):
Any trip that involves adventure activities carries a certain amount of risk. If you’re going to be hurtling around the countryside on a
quad bike and firing a paintball gun in the air, then it’s probably a good idea to get your medical costs covered (not to put you off or
anything). An EHIC card will cover you if you intend to travel in the EEA. Better safe than sorry, eh?
Knowing where you need to be and when is pretty crucial. It sounds obvious, but we’ve had people show up for their flights a week early or
late more times than we can remember. With every little detail of your trip flying around your head, the most obvious ones can simply be pushed right out
of your memory, so get it all written down in one place to avoid timing mishaps.
Preparation is the key
Get your currency changed and make sure it’s the right one so you don’t rock up in Romania with euros (again, sounds obvious but you’d be surprised). Also get an idea for how much things are, what is that average price of a pint, for example? Our sales team will be
able to help you out with this so just ask!
We’ve all been there: You get in to holiday mode and exclusively pack floaty summer dresses and gaudy Hawaiian shirts, only to have it rain for a week. Check the
weather forecast before you pack. If it’s going to heave it down for the whole trip, you might want to leave the itty bitty speedos out (in fact, just
leave them out in general).
You can organise all of the fabulous activities in the world, but it would all be for nothing if you don’t think about how you’re going to get to them.
Simple things like pre-booking transfers from the airport, rather than relying on taxis or public transport, can make all the difference.
If you do plan to use public transport, then make sure you know in advance how the system works, rather than having to battle with a ticket machine armed
only with your GCSE Spanish.
Mastering foreign public transport is generally considered to be a Dark Art
Don’t fall in to the typical ‘Brit abroad’ stereotype. Do a bit of research before you go and find out about the local customs and culture. For example, if
you plan to do any sightseeing, make sure you don’t rock up to a religious site dressed like the cast of Geordie Shore. Apart from
anything else, you’ll get a much richer experience of the country and culture as a whole if you immerse yourself in it.
Make sure you keep your wits about you when in an unfamiliar country or city; this is particularly important when travelling abroad to
some of the more far flung destinations. There’s no need to panic, just make sure you do your research on the safe places to be, whether pickpockets
operate in the area and be generally sensible about your valuables and personal safety. We supply guides for our groups in many of our
locations to ensure they get the most out of their weekend without having to worry about getting ripped off or ending up in the dodgy end of town.
Just remember, the beauty of the perfect last night of freedom is all in the preparation. Plan until you’re blue in the face and then you
can just focus on enjoying yourself when you get there. After all of that hard work, you definitely deserve it.