Now that summer’s here you may be getting ready for that long awaited European vacation. Have you checked to be sure you have the right travel credit card? Although using credit cards are best when you travel, you need to be sure you’ve selected the best credit card for overseas use.

If you’re getting ready to travel, you need to take care of a few matters regarding your credit card before you leave. You should check with your credit card issuer about fees or charges when using the card outside of the U.S. Many of the financial institutions charge additional fees for foreign transactions, such as three percent when converted to U.S. dollars.

It is recommended that while you have your bank on the line, you advise them of the dates you’ll be traveling and the countries you will be in. If they don’t know you’re out of the country and start getting charges from Paris, they may cancel your account until you contact them.

You should take credit cards from two banks. If there’s a problem and one bank cancels your credit card while you‘re traveling, if the two cards are from the same institution they would cancel both. The second card could just be a back-up. It’s best to use just one credit card as it’s easier to keep track of your spending.

Seasoned travelers recommend when vacationing in Europe, you use a debit card for getting local currency. Cash machines are common throughout Europe and you can go to any ATM machine and get cash back. The drawback with this is that there are quite often limits of the amount of cash you can withdraw at one time. You may also want to set-up with your financial institution in advance, a daily allowance of the amount of cash that can be withdrawn from your debit card just in case it is lost or stolen.

With the debit card, there is a fee for each transaction. So you wouldn’t want to use the debit credit card in place of a credit card as you might do here in the U.S., as each charge would generate an added fee. You can keep the debit card just to replenish your cash. It is suggested you have enough cash on hand, as there are times when a credit card sign is posted at the door at say a restaurant, but when the bill comes they don’t accept that card.

Use caution while traveling of being too liberal when using your credit card number. Keep your travel credit cards and your debit credit card in a safe place. Keep all receipts so that you can verify the charges upon your return. Maintain your pin number in a safe place. Be sure you have the financial institution’s phone numbers just in case you lose your credit card.

Now that you have your travel credit card and debit card information, it’s time to make those final plans and start packing. Oh, ……and don’t forget to take lots of pictures and have fun!

Travel bag shopping can be time consuming as well as you need to do a lot of market research before choosing a traveling bag for yourself. There are lot of ways where you can save time and energy in doing market research for travel bags since internet now provides us an interesting option of shopping of travel bags from home.

So are you short of time but you have been asked to go for an important business meeting next week and you need to buy a travel bag? Yes, it has happened so many times with so many of us. The most interesting option to do some market research first before going in for a travel bag is to sit at home in front of the computer and do some market research.

There are hundreds of sites on the internet that market travel bags and traveling related items. These sites are quite well researched. Some of these sites also have special offers on luggage from the manufacturers itself therefore offer fabulous discounts on the products.

These sites are good for carrying out a market research since, these mention the type of luggage carriers, and their costs simultaneously with each item. There are also photographs presented of these items so that you get the idea of what it looks like. The sites also give details about the bags and the carrying capacity if you are interested in these particulars too.

Plus, as many sites you browse you will notice that many styles of luggage, some specialized items sites that provide you will stylish, elegant products. Almost all these sites provide comparative prices. So you will get the general idea of what an item is being priced at.

If you do not believe in shopping over the internet, you can for sure get the general idea of the price of the item that you are intending to buy. Moreover, you can buy the same item at a local shop and ask for a price that would be comparative with the prices mentioned on the internet.

Plus, you can also find luggage which will show you huge amount of style and elegance. This luggage is an eye-catcher and a must have for a fashion conscious person. The the more you search the internet there are chances that you will find more information about travel shopping, thereby preparing you for shopping over the internet.

There are many different types of traveller. There are business men and women who are flying from one city to another for brief meetings, then there are families taking a two week holiday to the sun with young children, then there are students or gap year travellers who will be backpacking around exotic locations on extremely low budgets. There are really about as many different types of traveller as there are different types of person.

There are many different approaches you can take to booking your travel arrangements. Your main priority may be convenience, for example if you have a meeting near the airport you will need airport accommodation and little else, however, if you are travelling for pleasure, you are likely to have far less restrictions and will be willing to consider all types of arrangements. You can have these arranged for you by a travel agent or you could do it for yourself online. Or alternatively, you may wish to simply travel to a city or country with absolutely no plans and just see what happens when you get there.

On of the things you should always travel with is proper health and travel insurance. Obviously your requirements will again vary depending on what kind of travel you are undertaking. If you are travelling for business, full travel insurance that will provide you with alternative flights if yours is cancelled or delayed will be important. For most holiday travellers, this may not be quite as important. If you are travelling with children you may wish to consider it, but otherwise you may be quite flexible and tolerant if delays do occur. But you may be more worried about your luggage and belongings and wish to have good coverage for loss or damage to your property. All these options are available today with the various travel insurance companies that are operating in the market.

Generally speaking, you will always need health insurance when you travel. You cannot afford to take the risk that an accident or serious injury occurs and you do not have proper coverage. There are many parts of the word where free national health insurance is not provided and if you do require medical treatment, it will only be provided if you can pay for it. Particularly if you are travelling with children, you should always arrange adequate travel insurance with medical coverage. This is simply a risk that you do not want to be bearing yourself especially when the cost of travel insurance is so affordable.

It is true that you cannot find a single luggage that will be able to meet all your travel needs. Knowing which type of luggage is right for you depends on your packing style and the type of travel.

An important consideration when it comes to luggage decision is the kind of trip you will be taking, the activities that you plan to be doing and the number of belongings that you plan to bring along with you. You should find a bag that provides convenience when it comes to packing, comfortable to carry and versatile.

Travel backpacks have internal frames, a suspension system and can be converted into a hand held bag. Some styles even have a removable daypack for short daily excursions. Travel backpacks are ideal for travelers who desire mobility and would prefer to carry all of their gear. If you plan to visit urban areas, these backpacks are not suited.

Available as well is wheeled luggage categorized into two namely the traditional wheeled luggage and the convertible wheeled luggage. The traditional wheeled luggage is equipped with durable and heavy-duty handles and in-line wheels. This type of wheeled luggage is not suited for the adventure seekers but is ideal for business travelers or people visiting urban areas. A piece of advice for business travelers is to have a suitcase, a carry-on and a briefcase as these pieces work well together.

Convertible wheeled luggage can be converted to a wheeled luggage and could as well function as a backpack. This luggage is equipped with hidden shoulder straps to enable you to carry the bag as a backpack. It can even be carried as a duffel bag. This type is suited for travel to an urban area. As the bags are not equipped with a hip belt, these are not suited for long backpacking as the entire weight of the bag will be supported only by the shoulders.

Duffels are of three types which include the general purpose travel that comes in varying sizes, wheeled duffels and expedition duffels. General purpose travels have various sizes and are cheaper as compared to other luggage types. This is ideal for short trips and if you are traveling light.

Expedition duffels can be equipped with straps to convert the bag into a backpack for added convenience. These are suited for travelers who have a lot of gear to bring along with them and it isn’t necessary for them to carry the duffel by hand within a considerable distance upon arriving at the destination.

Wheeled duffels provide a large storage capacity and are equipped with wheels. This is very much ideal for travelers who need to bring along with them a lot of gear but would need the convenience of wheels to maneuver their luggage at airports or train stations. This is not suitable though for travel to remote areas as compared to the travel backpacks.

For those who are into camping, climbing or backpacking, internal frame backpacks are for you. These have been specifically designed to provide good support for long periods of hauling gear on wilderness trips.

With the numerous travel luggage and bags available for you, check on which types are suited for your type of trip.

Most people who travel alone tend to get bored and require some sort of activity to keep themselves busy. But in case of traveling in groups you have lot of fun, sharing of thought, expression of feelings and also some learning. Such a group travel is organized by big companies. They send their staffs in groups and since the staffs already know each other they get along easily during such travel. Here it becomes a team work since it is a joint decision made by the staffs on the immigration and customs documents, travel insurance, stay tenure etc. Bachelors are allotted shared rooms.

Family people have individual rooms . The whole place would be filled with kids, teenagers and some old people. Tourist must wait until every one gets in so that the tour bus is able to leave for the next stop. Check-in is usually very difficult in hotels but once you get your room, the vacation officially begins.

Being considerate and patient is the key to a joyous group travel. Since we come across many people with varying characters and perceptions, we should adjust ourselves to face any kind of situation. Don’t give up your sense of humor since it is one of the vital stuff for a pleasurable group travel. This kind of travel binds relationships and is ideal to spend quality time with your friends, relations and business colleagues to share opinions.

When you have an official meeting, the selection of venue is very important to make the meeting memorable. The best fit places would be restaurants, indoor or outdoor pools, fitness center and probably a spa. If your conference has a break or two, many resorts tell you the possible local sights to see during the break. Going out in a group for any purpose should be a memorable one. Let the travel or trip be official or personal, make the place lively and as far as possible be humorous and sustain yourself in case of any misunderstandings.

Next time when you book a resort for your group conference, be clear with your requirements to make the meeting enjoyable and memorable. Your meeting should be comfortable for all your co staffs. You should avoid resorts having bars in case you have female staffs coming along. If you have any new staff in your group; make them feel comfortable with certain gestures like smile and hand shake and introducing yourself and others to him. Such decent habit helps them to come out to you easily without hesitation.

Your Itinerary. As much as possible, plan to stay in larger hotels that have more elaborate security. Safety experts recommend booking a room from the second to seventh floors above ground level to deter easy entrance from outside, but low enough for fire equipment to reach.

Because take-off and landing are the most dangerous times of a flight, book non-stop flights when possible. When there is a choice of airport or airline, ask your travel agent about comparative safety records.

Legal Documents. Have your affairs at home in order. If you leave a current will, insurance documents, and power of attorney with your family or a friend, you can feel secure about traveling and will be prepared for any emergency that may arise while you are away. If you have minor children, consider making guardianship arrangements for them.

Register Your Trip. For US citizens, the State Department has made it very easy to register your trip regardless of what country you are visiting. They have an online form that takes about 5 minutes to fill out at travel.state.gov. Take a few moments to fill this out. Leave a copy of your passport and visa with a good friend or relative.

Credit. Make a note of the credit limit on each credit card that you bring. Contact your credit card company before you go and tell them the dates of your travel. Make certain not to charge over that amount on your trip. In some countries, Americans have been arrested for innocently exceeding their credit limit. Ask your credit card company how to report the loss of your card from abroad. 800 numbers may not work from abroad, but your company should have a number that you can call while you are overseas.

Insurance. Find out if your personal property insurance covers you for loss or theft abroad. More importantly, check on whether your health insurance covers you abroad. Medicare and Medicaid do not provide payment for medical care outside the U.S. Even if your health insurance will reimburse you for medical care that you pay for abroad, normal health insurance does not pay for medical evacuation from a remote area or from a country where medical facilities are inadequate. Consider purchasing one of the short-term health and emergency assistance policies designed for travelers. Also, make sure that the plan you purchase includes medical evacuation in the event of an accident or serious illness.

Few things in life are as satisfying as a trip abroad, and most of us can hardly wait until we leave on our great adventure. Anticipation of things to come merely heightens our delight. Planning our trips is part of the enjoyment. Running around, buying our tickets, luggage, clothes and other items that we plan to take with us don’t even seem like chores. It’s not even painful to pay for these things because we know that soon we’ll be exploring places we’ve never been before. However, there is one “fly in this ointment”, one more expense that we’d rather not have because even though it costs us money, we receive no tangible benefit. What am I talking about? Why, travel insurance, of course!!!

Is Buying Travel Insurance at the Last Moment Okay?

I don’t know about you, but as far as I’m concerned, paying for travel health insurance is not exactly my favorite way of spending money. Could it be because travel insurance is not exactly sexy? Or is it because it just adds to the cost of an already expensive trip? Whatever the reason, I’d rather not spend the bucks on travel insurance. However, because I know that it really is a necessity, I buy it. Nevertheless, I tend to put off the purchase as long as possible because it still feels like an “extra”. Am doing myself a favor or not?

Are You a Gambler?

Is keeping my money in my pocket for as long as possible helping me or hurting me? By delaying my travel medical insurance purchase until the day I leave, I’m actually hurting myself. This is because I’m actually gambling that nothing will happen to me before I buy my insurance. I’m betting that I or someone in my family won’t fall ill or get injured prior to departure. Also, if I haven’t bought it and something bad does happen, I won’t have any insurance coverage and I’ll be out of luck. Wouldn’t I be smarter to get my travel insurance ASAP in order to minimize my risk and maximize my potential benefits?

Don’t Lose Your Pre-Existing Condition Coverage

There is another reason to buy travel insurance without delay. Sometimes we make our travel arrangements in stages and don’t book our flights at the same time. We travelers are eligible for pre-existing medical condition exclusion waivers provided we buy our travel insurance from 7 to 21 days (depending on the policy) of making our arrangements. If we wait longer, we may not be eligible for those benefits, especially if a previously unknown health condition should materialize.

Don’t Wait To Finalize Everything Before Buying

Whenever I have traveled, I have known in advance what my plane tickets were going to cost, but what about you? Maybe you’ve made travel plans but have not yet bought your plane tickets. I suggest that it’s a good idea to buy your travel insurance even if you haven’t bought your tickets because doing so will ensure that you will qualify for the pre-existing condition exclusion waiver. If you don’t know what your flight will cost, estimate the cost and include this figure in the total cost of your trip. Later, when you have purchased your flight tickets, you can advise the insurance company. That way you will not risk being ineligible for coverage for a medical conditions that crops up prior to departure.

What If You’ve Already Left on Your Trip?

I happen to be one of the world’s greatest procrastinators. My motto is, “Never do today what you can put off until tomorrow because you might get lucky and not have to do it at all!” Maybe you, too, are a Great Procrastinator and you avoid buying travel insurance before you leave on your trip. What happens if you have delayed buying your travel insurance or expatriate insurance until AFTER your departure? Are you out of luck? Are you ineligible for insurance because you didn’t buy it before you left home?

Fortunately, the good news is that, even if you decide to buy after departure, you are still eligible for insurance. If you can get access to the internet, both travel insurance and expatriate insurance can be found and purchased online, even after you’ve left on your trip or taken up residence abroad. As the old saying goes, “Better late than never,” especially in this case!

Can You Get Insurance for Someone Else Who Has Already Left?

Here’s another scenario. What if there is an emergency and a family member (including minors) or a friend or employee has not bought travel insurance but has already left on their trip? Do they have to travel uninsured? The answer is no, they don’t have to go without travel insurance. You, or someone else they designate, can go online and purchase travel insurance on their behalf. It’s good to know that when friends, family or employees are too busy to get their own travel insurance, they don’t have to go without it.

In this case, all you need to do is fill out an online application and make the required online payment. You’ll get instant confirmation and can even print out a copy of the policy. There is one cautionary note though. If you’re purchasing travel insurance on behalf of a minor, you’ll first have to register as an adult in order to get the insurance. It is also important to note that they will not be eligible for coverage for pre-existing medical conditions that occur during the trip after departure and prior to purchasing their insurance. This is merely another reason why purchasing travel insurance should not be delayed.

In the World of Travel Insurance, Timing Definitely IS Everything

Timing is everything, they say. Purchasing travel or expatriate insurance was probably not on the mind of whoever coined that phrase. Nevertheless, those words apply as much to buying travel insurance as they do to anything else. Given the potential for financial ruin if you’re not insured, the time to buy yours is before you need it because buying it after you need it is impossible and much too late. Learn from the “Great Procrastinator” and get the insurance you need before you need it.

Your Itinerary. As much as possible, plan to stay in larger hotels that have more elaborate security. Safety experts recommend booking a room from the second to seventh floors above ground level to deter easy entrance from outside, but low enough for fire equipment to reach.

Because take-off and landing are the most dangerous times of a flight, book non-stop flights when possible. When there is a choice of airport or airline, ask your travel agent about comparative safety records.

Legal Documents. Have your affairs at home in order. If you leave a current will, insurance documents, and power of attorney with your family or a friend, you can feel secure about traveling and will be prepared for any emergency that may arise while you are away. If you have minor children, consider making guardianship arrangements for them.

Register Your Trip. For US citizens, the State Department has made it very easy to register your trip regardless of what country you are visiting. They have an online form that takes about 5 minutes to fill out at travel.state.gov. Take a few moments to fill this out. Leave a copy of your passport and visa with a good friend or relative.

Credit. Make a note of the credit limit on each credit card that you bring. Contact your credit card company before you go and tell them the dates of your travel. Make certain not to charge over that amount on your trip. In some countries, Americans have been arrested for innocently exceeding their credit limit. Ask your credit card company how to report the loss of your card from abroad. 800 numbers may not work from abroad, but your company should have a number that you can call while you are overseas.

Insurance. Find out if your personal property insurance covers you for loss or theft abroad. More importantly, check on whether your health insurance covers you abroad. Medicare and Medicaid do not provide payment for medical care outside the U.S. Even if your health insurance will reimburse you for medical care that you pay for abroad, normal health insurance does not pay for medical evacuation from a remote area or from a country where medical facilities are inadequate. Consider purchasing one of the short-term health and emergency assistance policies designed for travelers. Also, make sure that the plan you purchase includes medical evacuation in the event of an accident or serious illness.