By Jane Marshall

Preparing for international travel involves planning and prep. It’s so fun. Really! You get to think about all the adventure that’s coming. Here are some tips to get you started.

1. Stay Healthy in Other Countries

Planning a trip to Morocco? Or maybe Peru? It’s a good idea to get your travel vaccinations early, because some vaccines take time.

Take TwinRix for example.

This vaccine is for Hepatitis A and B and is administered in three doses over the course of six months. Look at their vaccine calendar calculator to see if you have time before you go:

TwinRix: Do I have time to get vaccinated?

Dukoral is another example. It’s an oral vaccine for cholera and travellers’ diarrhea (specifically E. coli bacteria).

Instructions from their website say you need:

“two doses at least one week (up to six weeks) apart

starting no later than two weeks before travel.”

It’s Easier Than Ever to Get Vaccinated

Previously, I’ve gone to travel health clinics for my vaccinations. Most recently I went to my local Sobeys Travel Wellness Clinic (part of the pharmacy). They were amazing. The Pharmacy Manager gave me a private travel consultation and all the prescriptions and vaccinations I needed. It took about an hour.

You can also try:

Other Things to Remember:

  • Bring a first aid kit
  • Bring all your regular medications with you in carry-on, in case your baggage is lost or delayed
  • Carry hand sanitizer and use it before eating

2. Safety and Precautions

Ensure you know the safety situation in the country you’re traveling to. This could mean dangerous animals, criminal activity, and political instability.

Check with the Government of Canada’s Travel and Tourism page to learn about safety in many countries:

Travel Advice and Advisories

And stay tuned to the news regarding politics, protests, and overall stability.

Don’t Forget

  • Take a photo of your travel documents and store it on your phone
  • Leave copies with someone you’re traveling with, and someone you’re not
  • Travel with someone you trust
  • Use a money belt for money and documents

3. How to be Comfortable on the Plane

Have an overnight flight? A few things to stay comfortable:

  • Bring earplugs for overnight flights
  • Use an eye-shade
  • Neck pillows are great! Try an inflatable one. 
  • Bring a lightweight blanket for cold airport waits and for extra comfort on the plane. Then put your seatbelt OVER the blanket (so you aren’t interrupted by flight staff)

4. Power Up

Remember: Your charging chord and electronics may not fit the plugs in another country. Campers Village staff have good knowledge of what type of adapter or converter you’ll need.

Solar Power

No power where you’re going? If you’re on an expedition or going super remote, try using solar power.

Goal Zero has two sizes of solar panels that can be set on a table, the ground, or even strapped to your pack while you’re trekking. They also have handy battery banks.

5. Water Safety

Tap water where you’re going may not be safe to drink. Carry water purification tablets like Aquatabs (and use them at village fountains, or whenever you’re unsure).

Another option: The Katadyn SteriPen.

Remember! Not all filters will kill viruses, nor are all filters suitable for international travel. Be sure to check, and keep yourself safe.

There are lots of things to remember. Lists are your best friend.

There’s nothing like flying to a new place, culture, and landscape. Enjoy your adventure!