In the little amount of flight training I have had- you always have to go through your pre-flight checklist before you take off. Same goes for the passengers, here is my recommended pre-flight checklist before traveling abroad:
1. Ensure your Passport is at least 6 months away from expiring. I made the mistake of not checking mine and having to add another thing to-do as I scrambled to wrap up my life before my Asia trip. As a bonus ensure someone back home has a copy of your passports, just in case.
2. Ensure your State/Home ID wont expire while you’re gone as well. There is nothing I dislike more then going to the DMV especially for 3 hours, but it’s a necessary evil and better than waiting until after it expires.
2.5 While you’re at it, get an International License if you plan on driving as well. You don’t need to take a test, just pay a small fee.
3. Check with your Doctor if you’ll be needing any shots in the area you are traveling in, or check yourself with the CDC website.
4. Fill up on any prescriptions if needed & get a surplus if your insurance will allow it. (can’t hurt to ask!) Be sure to keep a medical card on you of all the prescriptions you are on and any other informational health information you think is necessary.
5. Research which items that are hard to come by or expensive to purchase (For example in Bali, Tampons are really hard to come by and Sunblock is really expensive, so try and pack extra.)
6. Download any books onto your ipad/laptop/phone that you’d like to bring with you and ditch the hard copies (bag can get pretty heavy) and the flight may have a weight max for carry-ons as well as charge extra per kilo/pound.
7. Research which plugs/adapters are used in the destination country.
8. Keep a small notebook with you and write down addresses and numbers so that if your phone does not work or you cannot charge it so you have a back-up plan to at least get you safely to your hotel/destination. Or write it in your travel book.
9. Did you call your Bank? Call them twice and let them know your travel details, nothing is worse than sitting in a foreign airport crying with your useless debit cards all over the floor (yes, that was me.)
10. Have cash on you for on the spot visa’s (but don’t keep too much) $100 is plenty. This would have been great if I had had cash on me when my ATM card didn’t work. (above)
11. Print out your itinerary and keep it on you.
12. Ensure you have a ticket out of the country, most countries will require one or proof that you have enough money (around 5K) to buy a ticket last minute
A relaxing song I like to play to keep me in the groove- Kid Cudi always keeps me in a calm energetic state, happy travels!