Here are all my travel tips and tricks to think about before you go on the roads of the world. It would be a shame not to be well prepared before leaving!
Back up all your important documents
Unfortunately, I am much less rigorous today, but before my world tour and my first long trip, I was obviously a little stressed and a maniac of the organization in all its forms. That’s how I scanned all my important documents (passport, ID card, vaccinations, prescriptions, bank statements, credit card, equipment bills, warranties…) and made several copies: a folder on my PC, an identical copy of this folder on my hard drive, another on my cloud one drive, some paper copies and all the documents sent by email. With such a system, I was sure that I would always have the necessary documents within reach, in case of a problem or theft of papers for example. A completely fool-proof system!
Make a nice copy of your passport
On the advice of an English-speaking blog, I had also scanned the photo page of my passport and had it laminated. It’s not official, but it’s the document I presented when I arrived at a youth hostel or when I rented a bike, for example, so I didn’t have to take my passport out of my front security pocket every time. With one or two exceptions, it has been done systematically. I would have to do it again.
Make a screenshot of your travel confirmations
A screenshot is quick to take and allows you to keep all your flights, train tickets, insurance, etc. in one place and to find them easily if necessary or if you do not have Internet to search your mailbox.
Send a copy of your travel reservations to your security person
When I am on a long trip, I always send a copy of all my reservations (hotels, planes, etc.) by a simple Forward to my security person (my dad). That way, in case of a problem, he knows where I was the last time he heard of me. Besides, if I lose a document, it also has it in its mailbox, which is quite convenient! I also send him my Couchsurfing addresses, what a hitchhiking trip I plan to make that day, a picture of the license plate if I don’t feel too safe and I do a check-in when I arrive on Facebook, so he knows I arrived safely!
Request your European Health Insurance Card
It is a free and easy process. Depending on your status, you must apply to your social security or mutual insurance organisation and you will receive it promptly at home. It is useful throughout the European Union and even if it does not replace some elements of travel insurance, it will cover your health costs. Find out about the specific functioning of the country where you are going, because sometimes you have to advance the fees and get reimbursed when you return to France (this was my case for dental expenses when I was a student in Sweden).
Is your passport full?
Well, I don’t hide the fact that it happens quite rarely, but in three years of travel, I had managed to fill every nook and cranny of my first passport! There are two options available to you:
- Have it renewed free of charge until its initial date of validity (but be careful, you will not be allowed to keep the old one!)
- Apply for a new Frequent Flyer passport, with the old passport as proof (which you will not be able to keep either!)
I was allowed to do the double process and I ended up with two passports for a few years.