Maybe you have dreamed of a vacation in Europe for years, or maybe in your current job you often have to travel to places that are exotic to your business. The prospect of seeing another country, experiencing different cultures, languages and people different from the United States is exciting, but traveling abroad carries the same risks as traveling to your home country.
This does not mean that the danger lurks around every corner, waiting to grab an unsuspecting tourist or visitor. Because the holidays are meant to be fun and exciting, it is important to take some precautions while staying abroad. Here are suggestions to make your trip a lot easier. Don't forget to take lots of pictures!
- Know the laws and practices of each country you visit. As a passenger traveling abroad, you are subject to the laws of each country, whether or not you are an American citizen. Do not turn left if you should turn to the right, and keep in mind that something illegal in the state does not legally mean it elsewhere. If you have legal difficulties, please contact your nearest US Embassy.
- Always keep a detailed itinerary with a family member or friend in an emergency. If you know in advance where you will be staying, make sure that someone has your hotel and transit information.
- If your passport is lost or stolen abroad, leave a copy of your passport information with a trusted friend or relative at home.
- Always keep an eye on your things in public. Do not leave bags unattended or pick up packages from strangers.
- Look inconspicuous when traveling. Don't show off your jewelry, credit cards, or anything else that might catch your attention. Of course, it is never a good idea to bring only cash when traveling. Let passengers be handy and do not store all your money in one place – leave some out when leaving a well-hidden room in your room (and make sure your room is locked).
- Only exchange money at authorized locations, ie banks and hotels. When traveling to some countries, you may be happy to accept the American currency as your local seller. The American currency usually has a higher value and is more than likely to be hung by indigenous peoples and exchanged when the value of their currency is at its peak. Therefore, you might consider keeping a small amount of American cash when visiting local markets. If you are unfamiliar with the rates and try to trade foreign currency, you may find that you have paid too much for certain items.
- Ask your hotel to transport you if necessary. Although it is quite common to see a cab in a large US city like Atlanta, there may be risks in some countries, especially if taxis are not licensed. Use only the companies and drivers recommended by your hotel concierge.
Lastly, visit the US Department of State's travel site for information on obtaining passports and visas and up-to-date travel warnings. If you are already armed with the knowledge of your planned destination, you will surely enjoy a wonderful journey wherever you are.