I am currently in the process of planning a trip abroad and if all goes according to plan, it will be a magnificent eight days touring four beautiful cities, with a close friend of mine.
Before I bask in the glory of this upcoming expedition however, there are a few hurdles I must overcome. Read on for the five essentials that I think are worth pointing out to anyone else out there that is planning a trip abroad.
Visa – for destinations that require an entry visa, make sure that you go through the tourist visa requirements beforehand (either from the respective embassy or online portals provided), and make sure to have the requirements in order before you pay for your trip. Certain countries have a more straightforward visa application process while others might require a little more time. The idea is to make sure that you are not in a situation where you have paid for your flight, accommodation etc., only to be denied entry to the country. Of course if you do not require a visa at all, then you are in luck.
Vaccines – many countries will require a yellow fever vaccination certificate. Because this vaccine is administered only once every ten years, it is easy to forget when your next shot is due. Check your certificate and remember that you must have received the vaccine usually at least ten days before you travel. There are four approved vaccine centers in Kampala, Uganda and the prices vary depending on the location, ranging from 100,000 UGX to 150,000 UGX for the shot.
Flight – book your flight early and compare airlines, dates and itineraries. Several websites like Kayak (open) and DreamTrips (members only) can help you do this. Sometimes, booking a multi-city ticket is cheaper than booking a round trip. Other times, one-way tickets work out cheaper. Explore multiple options, get creative and be flexible.
Accommodation – this is probably the most flexible part of your travel as multiple options are available. I personally never shy away from negotiating anything because the one sure way to not know or not receive something is not to ask. Take advantage of off peak seasons when traffic is low.
Activities – lastly, research the area you are visiting and make a selection/book your top priorities (don’t just go with what someone else has suggested). Also, don’t put too much activity in a short trip. You can read more about making the most of a short holiday here.
Thoughts? What has been your experience? I look forward to your comments in the reply section below. Xx.