There are some basic things you need to do in preparation for your international air travel. Regardless of where you are going if you are leaving the United States and flying to another country these international air travel tips will apply. These steps are not complicated but you will need to make special preparations for international air travel over what you would do for a typical domestic flight.
Basic Steps To International Air Travel
The first thing you need to do is make sure that your passport is up to date. You can purchase an international air travel ticket and have no problems but then be stopped at the gate because of an issue with your passport. The best place to get information on how to get a new passport or renew your passport is going to be your post office.
Check to make sure the country that you are going to does not require a VISA. In this context a VISA is a special stamp in your passport that lets you get into a country. They usually cost a small fee, but you have to remember that they can take several weeks to get so you need to plan early. This is not a simple stamp that you can get at the airport, but rather is something that takes time to verify and confirm.
The next thing you want to make sure of is that you have the correct vaccinations for the country you are going to. Most of the time this will be required in tropical destinations and will require special vaccinations to go to their country. You may also want to get one on a voluntary basis because of an increased risk of infection in these countries. This again needs to be planned way in advance as these vaccinations may require multiple injections over several months.
Take care of any financial things before you go. If you can exchange your money before you leave you will generally get a much better rate than you would if you did it at the airport. If you have a debit or credit card you can use internationally you may be charged a percentage of all purchases for this exchange. Lastly you can use travelers checks but these are rarely used any longer.
Lastly, read up on the culture and people of the country you are going to. In addition you are going to want to learn as much of the local language as you can so that if you are in a situation where you need help you can get it. Just a few basic phrases such as “do you speak English?” and “Where is the nearest hospital?” are important to learn and memorize.
Those are the most important things to have prepared before your international air travel.