• Robin Larkin

Going on Vacation? Travel and Security Tips

Updated: Aug 16, 2021

Traveling is fun and exciting, but even the best packer is going to forget something at home. We’ve all been there before and it has taught us a very important lesson. However, before you get too excited and let the important to-do's slip your mind, read through this list of things people often forget before going on vacation.


Your vacation time is important so do not put off packing for your trip until the night before you leave. We tend to forget things when we are pressed for time, which will lead to unplanned vacation expenses, or going without, if you need to replace items while you’re away! Here are some things we might forget to do before going on vacation.



1. CALL YOUR BANK TO NOTIFY THEM OF YOUR TRAVEL DATES

Call the number on your debit or credit card and let them know where you will be traveling to and your dates of travel. It's a good idea to let them know so they don't put a hold on your card and you are stranded without cash! Your bank may also be partnered with a foreign bank which allows for free cash withdrawals.


2. PAY OFF YOUR BILLS BEFORE YOU LEAVE

If your bills are not already scheduled for automatic payments, make sure to pay off any outstanding balances before you leave. You don’t want to receive any unnecessary late fees.


3. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ADEQUATE TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR YOUR TRIP

It’s VERY important to make sure that your travel insurance will provide the necessary coverage for your trip – just in case. Also, if you’re planning on renting a car, make sure that your driver’s license is valid at your destination. You may need to acquire an International License to rent a car or even drive while away.


4. MAKE COPIES OF IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS

Have copies of your passport, credit cards and travel itinerary just in case it is lost on your trip. Whether it’s an electronic or hard copy – just make sure that you’ll be able to retrieve it, if needed.


5. UPDATE YOUR CALENDAR AND CREATE AN AUTOMATIC EMAIL RESPONSE

Make sure any appointments or commitments that have been scheduled during your trip are either taken care of before you leave or rescheduled for a later date. It’s also important to create an “out of office” email to let others know that you will be out of town.


6. PUT YOUR MAIL ON HOLD

If you receive the daily newspaper or are expecting packages, make sure to put your mail on hold so they are not sitting at your doorstep. Mail piling up is something that burglars look for.


7. UNPLUG YOUR ELECTRONICS

Save money and energy by remembering to unplug and switch off electronics at home.


8. MAKE A CHECKLIST OF ITEMS TO BRING

Include essential items like your passport, travel itinerary, prescription medications, first-aid supplies, chargers, adapters, clothing, toiletries, and so on. Double check your list to make sure you don’t forget anything important!


9. FULLY CHARGE YOUR ELECTRONICS AND BRING YOUR CHARGERS / ADAPTERS

Make sure that you bring a travel adapter with you when you travel. You also want to make sure that your electronics are fully charged so you don’t run out of battery before you reach your destination.


10. MAKE SURE YOUR FRIDGE IS CLEAN BEFORE YOU LEAVE

Eat up any food that will expire or perish before your trip to prevent waste and unpleasant smells.


11. CLEAN YOUR BATHROOM AND WASH YOUR BED SHEETS BEFORE YOUR LEAVE

This may sound silly, but trust me on this one! There is nothing like coming home to a spotless bathroom and freshly washed bed sheets after traveling.


12. BRING READING MATERIALS OR SNACKS

These items tend to be more expensive at the airport or on the train. Also don’t depend on being able to watch movies or TV shows on the plane all the time. If you forget to bring reading material it will be a long flight home. Try to bring appropriate snacks since airplane food leaves a lot to be desired.


13. PACK A CHANGE OF CLOTHES AND TOOTHBRUSH IN YOUR CARRY-ON LUGGAGE

Just in case your checked luggage doesn’t arrive at your destination when you do, you’ll be happy that you brought a change of clothes and toothbrush along with you! It doesn’t have to fancy, I like to stick to the basics.


14. AVOID OVER-PACKING

Try to pack lightly to prevent paying extra for over-sized luggage. This will also give you more room to bring back any purchases you make while on vacation.


15. KEEP ALL YOUR VALUABLES IN YOUR CARRY-ON LUGGAGE

Just in case your checked luggage gets lost or damaged, make sure to pack all your valuables in your carry-on luggage so they will be with you at all times.


16. HAVE YOUR LIGHTS ON A TIMER

It's a good idea to make your home looked 'lived in' while you are away. If you do not have timers you can always ask a trusted neighbour to stop by and turn on some lights for you, and keep an eye on your home while you're away.


17. ARM YOUR SECURITY SYSTEM

Make sure that you actually arm your security system before you leave for the airport and update your monitoring station. They will need to know who to contact if an alarm does go off while you are away.


18. RELAX

You're on vacation!

 

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