I'm about to take my first holiday abroad, with family (in-laws to be). This is obviously very exciting but I'm worried about being unprepared. They travel frequently so obviously my partner has been giving me lots of information on what we need to pack and what all the steps are but I like to do my own research too.

What one piece of advice/knowledge/wisdom do you wish someone had given you before your first trip abroad?

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    This question really is too broad for our format. But it sounds like you'll do just fine, since you're traveling with veteran travelers. The main thing I suggest for you is simply to relax, and don't worry, and enjoy your vacation. – Flimzy Jul 30 '14 at 10:58
  • In touristic places, information will be written in English and people will speak English too, so do not worry about that. There will be shops, supermarkets, like everywhere else but you probably won't need them too much expect for some souvenirs. Bring a socket adaptor for your laptop/phone – uztop Jul 30 '14 at 11:13
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    Thanks guys, I'm usually unprepared for most things and I've survived life so far so I'm sure I'll be fine with this too! :) – James Jul 30 '14 at 11:46
  • @b3njamin traveling to a country where they don't speak your native language? If yes, please learn the basics such as: hello, thank you, please, good bye, and how to count up to five maybe. Do try to use these as much as possible, people will definitely appreciate the effort and you might get favors/deals more easily that way. Just do it. Imagine some French dude coming to Manchester and saying "bonjour" when entering a pub, weird... Right? Same goes for you guys ;) – Adrien Be Jun 23 '15 at 18:21
  • @AdrienBe Absolutely agree, I made an effort then, and have done since! I find it terribly rude to impose my language and culture on the rest of the world. Thanks for the comment :) – James Jun 24 '15 at 15:08

Traveling is a personal experience and the things you will need really depend on what you want to do. If you are going on holiday where you will be doing a bunch of things, I will pack all the necessary things I need at home and not worry too much about my trip. To cut to the chase, here's my list of essentials:

  1. Shades or sunglasses, don't forget them.
  2. If you are a swimmer or just to want to make yourself wet in a pool, have a pair of your swimming clothes and goggles.
  3. A laptop, assuming you don't want to escape the rat race.
  4. Condoms, assuming you are married and want to have sex with your partner without the risk of making her pregnant.
  5. A towel, good to have when you are lying somewhere on a beach.
  6. Novels or books in general. Will help you enjoy long flights where passengers setting next to you are as grumpy as Donald Trump. Do some research on what to read and what's new. It all depends on your interest. (I carry my Kindle all the time).
  7. A flashlight. Good to have when you are out on a beach at night, or travel to an unknown land where you need to find your way around in the dark.

  8. Cash in local currency. And make sure you have some singles. You can do this after you land in your destination.

  9. Research the place before you travel. With that, you are making sure about what to do and where to go.

  10. Travel documents. Make sure you have them on you at all times. Shit happens, and you never know when.
  11. Have both the two and three pin plug adapters for your computer or electronic devices. A multi-adapter might be even better.
  12. Make sure you have your chargers in your handbag or backpack.
  13. Your credit card. Inform your bank that you are traveling so that they don't block your card when they see a charge from a place in a far away land. At least that's what I need to do in the US.
  14. A pen and paper.
  15. Training clothes and shoes. Most hotels will not let you use their facility in flip-flops.
  16. Last but not least, a nice backpack.
  • Honestly, I think I'm just over-thinking things - I travel all over the UK and it doesn't faze me in the slightest so I'll just keep my eyes open and I should be fine :) – James Jul 30 '14 at 11:44
  • @b3njamin Don't over think things. Worrying cannot help. Your trip will be simple and smooth. And if anything happens, remember that it happened because you didn't know about it, so it's to good to learn from it. Have a nice time. – Mohammad Jul 30 '14 at 11:55

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