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6 Common International Traveler Mistakes

Follow these tips to avoid the common travel pitfalls.

Business traveler

When you travel abroad, you can make many mistakes that cost you time, money, and convenience. If you want to have a more pleasant and enjoyable international travel experience, please avoid the common mistakes we highlight below.

Paying Too Much For Airline Tickets

You’ll find oodles of advice online to save money on buying plane tickets. Some think it is better to purchase tickets on a Monday or a Wednesday, late at night, or early in the morning.

Ticket prices can vary by hundreds of dollars by the day. One way to find the best international ticket prices is to use Skyscanner to check fares and fees. This site compares plane tickets for dozens of airlines and dates.

If you save big on your plane tickets, you’ll have money left over to spend when you get to your destination.

Not Getting an Entry Visa

If you are an American or British citizen, you may be somewhat spoiled by travel agreements between the US, the UK, and the EU. You may take for granted how easy it is for you to travel to those countries that you might skip looking into visa requirements until just before your trip. Depending on your destination country, this mistake could derail your entire trip.

Check the government website for your home country months in advance to confirm what the visa requirements are. Read these rules thoroughly as different countries have various policies for passport expiration dates, financial requirements for special types of visas – such as an Investor Visa for Italy – and visa registration requirements in many countries.

Leaving Your Passport at Home

How the heck can you forget your passport, right? But even experienced travelers leave their critical documents at home or fail to notice their passport expired last year.

Avoid this disaster by having a packing checklist. Write a detailed list for every trip. You should include checking your passport to ensure it’s still valid and packing it in a safe place in your carryon days before you leave.

Exchanging Money At The Airport

When you are in a rush, you might forget to go to the bank in advance to exchange currency. There are currency exchange booths available at every international airport to take advantage of people who have forgotten this vital task before arriving at the terminal. These exchange kiosks always have lousy exchange rates. Plus, the booths aren’t always open, so you could end up boarding a plane to Beijing with no Chinese currency.

Forgetting a Travel Adaptor

There are more than a dozen types of plugs used around the world. If you are going to a nation with different plugs from your home country, remember an adaptor that allows you to use your electronic devices. You can plug your cell phone into a USB port on your computer, but the charge will be prolonged.

You can buy a versatile travel adaptor with USB ports and keep it in your suitcase.

Having Debit and Credit Card Payments Declined

Having a transaction declined when you are far away from home is a real pain. Before you leave, call your banks and credit card companies and tell them that you will be traveling overseas. Tell them the countries you are traveling to and for how long. You still can have problems with individual companies flagging and declining some of your purchases. Carry several debit and credit cards with you, so you always have a way to pay for what you need.

Traveling overseas is usually rewarding and exciting. Your trip can be even more impressive if you avoid the common mistakes that bedevil so many international travelers. Now you know how to avoid some of the most common errors, so your trip should be smooth.


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