Essential Tips Every First-Time Traveler Must Know Before Going Abroad

Taking a trip abroad can be a nerve-wracking experience. That’s especially the case if you’re traveling alone or don’t know the local language. These are hurdles that you’ll have to overcome. Here are a few tips for those of you who might be going abroad for the first time or taking a solo trip for the first time. It does hit differently when you’re fully responsible for what goes on during your stay!

Double-Check Your Travel Documents Before You Leave for the Airport

Woman holding passport & boarding pass
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This is the worst mistake that you can make as a first-time traveler. Quite frankly, you’ll want to be aware of it during your whole trip. You want to make sure you check if you need a visa to travel where you’re going. This is something that you want to have down way before your trip.

Apart from having your things when you arrive at the airport, you may also want to make a copy of your passport. That could be the best form of ID to carry with you. What you really don’t want to do is to lose your passport while on the trip. If that happens, you need to contact the closest embassy or consulate to get a replacement as soon as possible.

Pack Accordingly

Man with tatted arm packs suitcase for adventure travel trip.
Image Credit: Shutterstock / BublikHaus

One of those tips that could apply even to staycations. Suppose you’re going to be visiting a very religious place like the great mosque or specific churches in Europe, particularly in the Orthodox faith. You want to ensure that you have the right outfits for those occasions. Of course, if you’re going to a freezing place, you should wear a puffy jacket. If you’re going to the beach, carry a swimsuit. These are obvious when you break them down, but sometimes, the excitement of the trip can get the best of you, and you miss some of these tips.

Emergency Packing in Your Carry-On

Young man is standing near window at the airport and watching plane before departure.
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No one wants to arrive at their destination only to find out that their bag didn’t make the trip. Things get worse when you realize that you just had a 12+ hour flight! That means that your bag is probably not going to arrive any time soon. To prepare for this, you can keep an extra change of clothes in your carry-on bag. That may seem a little excessive to some people, but it’s one of those things you’ll be glad you did if you find yourself in that situation.

Have Accommodations Set Before You Leave

Young woman planning vacation trip and searching information or booking an hotel on a smart phone and laptop.
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This tip is not only going to help you if you arrive tired at your destination. Some countries actually require that you have proof of accommodation to get through immigration at the airport. Also, it’s just not a great idea to be scrambling through a city that you don’t know trying to find a place to stay. If you’re staying abroad a bit longer, it may be okay not to have the full length of your stay booked. In most cases, though, this is a must!

Check Which Areas of the City Are Safest

Panic attack in public place. Woman having panic disorder in city.
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When you go to book your accommodation, it’s always a good idea to do a little extra research on the city that you’ll be staying in. The last thing that you want is to stay in a dangerous part of town just because you want a better price per night. Many times, it’s best to spend a little extra cash on lodging if you’re sure you’re staying in a decent part of town. This doesn’t mean that you should stick to 5-star hotels or anything like that. There are also hostels in certain “nice parts” of some cities!

Knowing A Few Local Phrases

Young tourist using mobile translation application
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If you don’t know the local language, there are a few phrases that you may want to learn to help you out. The greetings are certainly a good start. Then you may want to learn to say things like “how much?” The problem with this phrase, though, is that you may not benefit from the answer at all. If you’re interested in buying, though, a good salesman on the other end will find a way to connect with you.

Mario Perez

Author: Mario Perez


Mario is a seasoned journalist who’s worked with multiple publications over the years. He has a passion for looking for that story within the story itself. When he’s not actively looking for breaking news, he enjoys playing and watching sports.

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