WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Before you leave on your trip take a few minutes to look over some of our travel tips. They will make your vacation run a lot smoother.
• As of June 1, 2009 you need a passport for air, land and sea travel to and from the Caribbean, The Bahamas, Bermuda, and Central and South America. Basically everywhere including the United States if you are from Canada.
• If you don’t have one – it takes anywhere from 2 weeks to 3 months to get one. If you go right to the passport office it will take approx. 2 weeks to receive it. If you mail it in it will take anywhere from 3 - 8 months.
• It’s a good idea to photocopy the front page of your passport and carry an extra passport photo of yourself. Keep this separate from your passport. If your passport is stolen or lost you will have everything you need for a new one.
• Always keep your passport in a safe place. On your person when moving around and in a hotel safe when you are at the hotel.
• Pack as light as possible. I have yet to find out how to do this, but it is easier to move your luggage around if you do pack light.
• Check out the weather before you leave and pack according to the climate. Dress conservatively. Anything too flashy and you are a target for thieves and con artists.
• Carry a change of clothes in your carry on in case your luggage gets lost. Its takes up to 72 hours to find missing luggage.
• Need help with packing? Try here
ALWAYS buy health and cancellation insurance when leaving Canada. Cost for health care in other countries is very high. The health portion will cover your medical expenses and the cancellation will cover everything else including your flights home if you miss your flight due to illness as well as additional hotel and meal expenses while you are still unable to fly. ALWAYS check with your insurance agent on what your policy covers. Check with Blue Cross as well if you have that insurance as it doesn't cover everything.
It’s also a good idea to check what Alberta Health Care covers in other provinces in Canada. Sometimes they will not cover the full cost in another province.
• Make sure you check with your local health authority for what kind of immunizations you might need and how far in advance you need them.
• Most common ones are diphtheria, tetanus, polio typhoid and hepatitis A.
Get sufficient rest.
• Get enough exercise.
• When traveling long distances stop to rest and stretch, eat lightly and stay clear of rich and spicy foods.
• Drink plenty of fluids.
• Be careful drinking the water and using ice in your drinks. Just check with the hotel to see where the water and ice is coming from. Usually they have bottled water.
• Carry and use sunscreen.
• Wear a medical alert bracelet if you are allergic to anything.
And after all of that…have fun!!
Carry all your medication in their ORIGINAL containers.
• Bring extra medicine in case you get delayed in any way from coming home.
• Always carry your medicine in your carry on luggage.
• It’s a good idea to carry a copy of the prescription in case you need to refill it.
• Also carry a list of all the medications you are on.
• If you wear glasses, carry a copy of the prescription in case you break or lose yours.
Be aware of the area you are in and don’t carry valuables in your back pocket, keep purses under your arm with the strap up.
• Have your passport and declaration papers ready when you are going through customs.
• Keep receipts of things you bought and receipts for your hotel to prove your length of stay.
Don’t carry a lot of cash, credit cards will work in most countries.
Don’t carry a lot of valuable jewelry with you if you can help it. If you do, carry it in your carry on luggage and put it in a hotel
safe when you get to where you are going.