It’s 2022, and finally, the world is starting to feel like it is moving back towards some parts of our life before COVID.
Masks are still mandatory in many places, gathering sizes are limited, especially in many indoor venues, and vaccination rates could always be higher than they are.
While we as an international community must all take responsibility for not letting our guard down too much, it also feels good to have some measure of our usual freedom restored to us.
Still, overall, in most places in the world, we are doing well at combatting the pandemic.
It’s extremely important to be respectful and safe wherever you are, but especially when travelling to a foreign country.
As it is courteous to learn greetings and basic phrases in the language of the country you will be travelling to, so too is it respectful to look after your safety and that of the locals by taking precautions when you travel.
For example, book a COVID test before you leave the country! This is mandatory almost everywhere in the world, but doing it willingly shows care and consideration for those around you.
Aside from booking a COVID test, there are a few other things it is wise to do before travelling out of your home country. We’ve made a list so that you can check things off as you go!
Check Travel Restrictions and Requirements
If you want to be really courteous and well prepared, you should check the restrictions and requirements that apply to the country or countries you are travelling to.
Not only will this mean that you are not caught off guard or let down when you are unable to take part in a certain activity or visit a certain venue, but it also shows the locals and officials of the country you are visiting that you care about the rules that they have in place.
There is nothing worse than an obnoxious foreign traveller who arrives in a country and expects the country to cater to their desires!
Prepare for Every Eventuality
There are many aspects to this consideration.
Let us say that, even though you are vaccinated, you somehow contract COVID while you are abroad.
The prudent thing to do before travelling would be to make provision in your budget for a more extended stay than you anticipated, in case you have to quarantine.
Having a margin of error in a travel budget is also good for unforeseen circumstances such as being robbed, misplacing a valuable item or changing travel plans at the last minute.
Travel insurance may help here. You can also prepare for unexpected circumstances by packing a few copies of your passport, saving emergency numbers somewhere other than your phone and having clothing options for various weather conditions.
Know where your local embassy is located and familiarise yourself with the area that you will be travelling to, at least a little bit before you arrive.
Know which areas are safe and which are not: a good way to find this out is to do some research before you arrive but also to ask trustworthy local sources.
Make the people at the place where you’re staying aware of where you’re going when you head out for the day, and try to give them an expected time of return.
Should anything awful happen and you do not return, they will know to raise the alarm.
Things like this are not pleasant to think about, but being prepared should they happen is a must.
Learn Some Local Phrases and Customs
When travelling abroad, it is not only polite but also helpful to learn some basic phrases in the local language. Things like:
- Hello, my name is…
- Nice to meet you.
- Excuse me, which way to…
- How much is this?
- I would like to order…
This way, you will not struggle too much to make yourself understood in any situation.
It might also be a good idea to download a translation app or keep a pocket foreign dictionary in the event that you do not have access to the internet.
This is not only a good idea in terms of being friendly and respectful but also a good idea in terms of having at least some idea of what you are being told.
Ask locals that you trust for information before leaving your place of residence as well, for example, a ballpark figure of how much something should cost or a good place to eat so that you do not get taken for a ride by someone with bad intentions.
Travelling in 2022 certainly looks different to travelling before the pandemic in many ways, but we are resilient and can adapt to change.
Instead of comparing travel before and after the pandemic, why not accept things as they are, roll with the punches and have the best vacation possible. Bon voyage!
Featured image: Pixabay