My girlfriend (or rather partner of twenty-something years) loves lists.
The best advice I can give is to make one. I know it sounds anal, but it takes such a lot of the issues out of knowing whether you have everything together.
As we got stuff to where it needed to be and only then, we could cross it off the list and when it came time to go, we knew where everything was and knew that it was with us.
Of course, we were only going across the Channel to France, but even so, more exotic places just have different lists.
A guide book, travellers checks as opposed to too much cash, change local currency into small notes so you don't announce to the world how much money you have when you pay for something, travel light, keep clothes to a minimum and get some comfortable shoes.
Always best to do a little research and plan your trip and what you are going to do. Don't feel that you have to stick to the plan, as that is half the fun, but its better to know where the best places to go are before you travel. Nothing worse than getting home to find that you have missed something exciting.
Do a little financial planning as you don't want to run out of money halfway through the holiday, and depending on where you go, always drink bottled water. Avoid ice in your drinks, its better to drink warm coke than to spend a day hunched over a toilet!!
Every country got their own customs, rules and regulations. Reading a little about the country you are visiting can save you lot of trouble.
I think a lot of it depends on what country you are visiting. For example, you would prepare much differently for a trip to Colombia than you would for a trip to Europe.
With that said, one of the most important things to figure out is how you will access your money. Often, ATM charges can be very expensive and even some credit cards charge you more in other countries. So, you would want to discuss with your bank about how to access your money and possibly purchase travelers checks or something similar that can be used all over...
As traveling to another country usually involves flying, this hub may be useful : http://hubpages.com/hub/Air-Travel-Tips … Time-Flyer
You have to gather information about the place you want to go first. Study the culture of the people. It is better to bring a map. The best thing to do also is to be careful.
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