Traveling with your family on vacation can be a huge amount of fun. It can also rapidly turn into a nightmare if you don’t take some basic precautions. There are many things that can go wrong and many ways that you can end up wasting your money if you are not careful.
So here are some tips on safe and cost-effective family travel.
Take Care of the Financial Details
When you go traveling you’ll be a long way from your local bank and from your normal methods of withdrawing money. And if you are traveling to a foreign country, then the local currency will likely be something that you are not even familiar with. Your money could become your lifeline if there are any complications on your trip, so it’s important to make sure that you continue to have access to it.
If your bank detects withdrawals from overseas, then they may freeze your account until they can verify that it has not been compromised. It’s important to notify them in advance that you will be traveling to a foreign country so that this doesn’t happen.
You should also ensure that you take some cash with you in case you lose access to electronic withdrawals. You can exchange most currencies for the local denomination fairly quickly and many vendors take foreign currency, but you should probably also have some local currency on hand to pay local vendors who don’t deal in electronic transactions or foreign cash.
It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with how the local currency works and what things are worth in that currency. Otherwise, you will be at the mercy of anyone who wants to rip you off.
Consider Getting Travel Insurance
While getting injured while on vacation is no fun, it can rapidly degenerate into a nightmare if the country you are injured in, has overly high hospital expenses. If you plan on taking some risks and engaging in some thrill-seeking activities while on vacation, then travel insurance is a must-have. Otherwise, you may find yourself seriously in debt due to excessive medical bills and related expenses.
Arrange Airport Parking Early
Traffic on the road to the airport for the start of your trip can frequently also be the start of unnecessary stress. Once you get there and your trip officially begins the last thing you want is to deal with more stress getting your car parked. Making some preparations to smooth over the process can help put you and your family in the right mood for the trip.
Doing some preliminary research and preparation can drastically simplify the job of getting your car parked. For example, if you are traveling from an airport such as Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), then ideally research and organize any required parking at EWR in advance. This will save you time, money, and stress. Leaving your parking arrangements until you get to the airport puts you at the mercy of potentially unscrupulous and incompetent parking operators who may be more trouble than they are worth.
If airport parking is too expensive and too much hassle for you then you might also want to research private parking options. Arranging these through a third-party service gives you the most information possible and also lets you get your parking at the best price.
Check for Available Child Discounts
If you are traveling with kids then bear in mind that many of the businesses and services you make use of on your vacation will have child discounts. While it can be awkward asking about these, you can save yourself a lot of money by taking advantage of them. So check and see what discounts are available if you don’t want your trip to cost more than it needs to.
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When traveling by yourself, you can take a lot of liberties with your approach. Family travel has far fewer margins for error though, and requires more preparation and planning. So do your research in advance and take any necessary measures needed to ensure your trip is safe and doesn’t cost you far more than it needs to.