In 2017, Americans accounted for over 16 percent of long-distance travel. Since then, not only has the long-distance travel market exploded, but so has the expat and long term traveler population. While the record highs for global tourism have been great news, particularly for countries like Thailand and Indonesia, the motives and preparation process behind each kind of traveler can differ. For those heading off on an extended trip, their preparations can be a bit different than the standard vacation prep. Whether it is in search of a backpacking adventure, an extended business trip or embarking on the ultimate American road trip, make sure to complete this checklist before you head off.
Tips for setting off on an extended trip
Secure Your Home
While you are away on an extended trip, you want the peace of mind of knowing that your home is taken care of. This goes beyond checking appliances are switched off or the windows are properly locked. You can consider hiring a house-sitter. This can be done either from a certified agency or using someone familiar. A family friend is a good choice. Homes are 65 percent less likely to be broken into if someone is at home. In addition, you will also need to think of any other family members being left behind, such as pets. Arranging stays for pets ensures they get the regular care they need while you are away.
Finally, take the time to arrange security and home maintenance. This can be done either by family members or a professional firm. Homes without a security system are 300 percent more likely to be burglarized. Despite this fact, only 17 percent of homes have security systems. This means you reduce the chances of a home burglary dramatically. With this peace of mind, you can travel confidently knowing your home is being regularly maintained. Refusal to take steps to prepare your home before an extended trip means you are unintentionally leaving your home vulnerable. The average loss per break-in is $2,416.
Secure Your Finances
A longer time on the road may mean a longer time not earning an income (unless it is a paid or working trip). This calls for the more stringent allocation of your travel funds. You can do this by breaking your spending allowance into weeks or travel destinations (whichever is appropriate for your trip). This helps you control your spending, and is also a security mechanism in the event of pickpockets or money misplacement while traveling.
If you plan on using credit or debit cards on your trip, you will also want to monitor your credit score. This should be done both before and during your trip. This is especially critical if your cards are stolen. If this does occur, you can request a security freeze on your credit report by the Credit Bureau. You can find their contact information on Crediful. This stops others from seeking credit in your name. It also prevents further damage to your credit score. Lastly, you want to ensure that you have access to your funds while traveling. This entails choosing a checking account that allows easy international access and withdrawals.
Besides being incredibly frugal while you’re traveling, you can also earn money on the road by selling a skill. Whether it is through travel photography publications or short term work in local villages, it is great way to earn some money to keep your travel funds in the green. Tricks such as going for second-hand buys in travel equipment, or transport sharing on your travels can also help your money go a much longer way while on the road.
Secure Your Health
Finally, be sure to consult your general physician before heading off. Find out about any vaccines and country-specific health information you may need. If you do have any pre-existing conditions or medication, you will want to consult with your medical professional to ensure you have enough supply to last your extended trip. Secondly, you will want to acquire travel insurance with medical coverage included. This ensures that if you do get sick while traveling, you can be compensated for any costs and be able to access medical attention.
Heading off on an extended trip can leave many things to consider. First and foremost is the additional impact on your finances and your place of residence. Taking the time to implement a few of these suggestions means you can worry less on your trip. Following these tips should lead to an easier return.
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