When traveling abroad your don’t want to run out of cash - especially considering that some countries do not yet such a broad acceptance of credit cards. Same places also have restrictions with regards to ATMs. It might not only be difficult to find an ATM, but some ATMs are restricted to domestic use and don’t accept international banking or credit cards.

You can check the availability of ATM in the world on a website from Visa. Here you also are sure that the ATM accept international cards.

http://visa.via.infonow.net/locator/global/ 

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Prepare a detailed travel itinerary which includes the following information for every day:

  • Flight / train number, departure and arrival time, terminal, etc.
  • Hotel name and address as well as telephone number and reservation number
  • Each meeting and its location as well as your contact person’s mobile phone number

 

 Print the itinerary and carry it in your hand-luggage. An electronic version is not enough since you need to be able to access it anytime and anywhere regardless of the status of your mobile devices’ battery life.

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Dec

21

It now is holiday season and many of us travel to even far destinations. If you are on low budget it often pays off not to take the direct route but to have a stop-over at another airport. In some cases you might have to stay a night or spend a lot of hours at the airport before you can board your connection flight.

sia_front

Not every airport provides the same comfort and opportunities for people who want to take a nap and may be also want to use some facilities like showers in between two flights. The Guide to Sleeping in Airports is a great website, which collects experiences with airports from travelers around the world. You will find the following information:

  • Best and worst airports for sleeping
  • Tips & tricks for sleeping at the airport
  • A blog from the community

It is a funny place for a very specific purpose. But I am sure you will love it the day you missed the last flight back home…

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When traveling there are at least two occasions to forget something - when you pack to leave and when you pack to return. To avoid forgetting something it is a good idea to use a travel checklist. There now is a website that professionalizes travel checklists by offering a free service.

dont-forget-your-toothbrush

Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush provides lists with predefined travel checklists for all kinds to holidays and destinations. These predefined travel checklists are based on travel themes, such as:

  • Beach Holiday
  • Winter Sports
  • Foreign Driving Holiday
  • Camping or Caravan Holiday
  • Cruising
  • Business Trip or other holiday

The travel checklists categorize items depending on the schedule of a trip starting with things to be done “In Advance”, “Two Weeks Before”, “One Week Before”, “One Day Before”, “The Night Before” and “As You Leave”. In a second step it will propose a packing list with items you will typically need for the kind of holiday you selected. You can also add own items that are missing on their list.

Within each list you will find all kinds of items that might be relevant for such a trip. Select the ones that matter to you and create your personalized travel checklist. In the options you can then choose if you want it to be send to you by email, have reminders, etc.

It is a free service and it is fun to use with a lot of good hints. Consequently used, I am pretty sure that it helps to take all items you need for your next trip.

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Oct

14

Did it ever happen to you that you quickly had to drive somewhere but first needed to go to the next gas-station because your tank was almost empty?

The best way to avoid such situations is to check the level in your tank on your way home or your base parking. In case it becomes close to a third only, you pass by a gas-station and fill it. This ensures that your car is always ready for an urgent ride.

This is also true for the regular maintenance of your car. Don’t wait until the last minute. It might happen that oil or tires are on their limits, so that you cannot use the car for a long trip. After you went to the maintenance workshop immediately schedule a reminder or pencil the next appointment into your calendar.

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Sep

24

Use “wait times” (i.e. in transit, waiting at the doctors, etc.) to catch up on reading (reports, homework, documents, etc.). I stopped having a daily newspaper and use the daily commuting time in the train to read the online edition with my iphone. This saves me about 30 minutes every day and I eliminated a major source of paper clutter at home.

Another option I sometimes use is to open all webpages I want to read on my laptop in the morning, so that whenever I have an idle space during the day, I can go through these to read sections. Although I personally am not a friend of paper, it also makes sence printing items to read to that they are at your hands anytime you might a slot for reading.

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Sep

07

When you travel by train you will usually decide which train and what time in advance. I might be a good idea to print the schedule of the train company for that day and to carry it with your travel documents. In case you finish your appointments earlier or even later, you easily can check other options and make instant decisions.

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Sep

03

I travel a lot and always had problems following up on the postal arriving home. As a result I missed a few payments or notices and it took me much more effort to get these things right afterwards.

With the Internet being everywhere I now found companies (e.g. private box) that provide a PO box as a service. For any incoming letter you will receive a notification by email. When you follow their link and log into their website you will be able to get more details such as the sender and size of the letter. At this stage the letter has not been opened so that you don’t receive information on its content.

You can then chose if you want them to open and scan the letter for you, forward it or throw it away.

Since I am using this service I never missed any mail again and I significantly improved my scanned document filing on my Internet server. This is the right thing for everyone who travels a lot.

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Aug

27

As a global trend airports get larger and larger. New terminals are being added in all large cities and the buildings become larger and larger often extending over multiple floors for arrival, departure, restaurants, services, parking, train stations, etc. Getting from one place to another in these impressive building can consume a significant amount of time. You can optimize your travel time significantly by following a few very simple rules:

  • Inform yourself in advance which terminal your flight is leaving from. Going to the wrong terminal makes you loose a lot of time and can generate huge stress in case you are a bit short on time.
  • When you need to change up to one or two floors you better use the escalators. If it more than two floors it often is faster to take an elevator - especially when you carry a lot of luggage with you.
  • Always use the flat escalators since they help you to cover large distances in short time and please NEVER stop walking on these escalators or if you walk slowly stay at one side so that people who are faster than you can pass.
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Aug

24

Some people carry a great number of credit cards with them. You can also significantly simplify the management of your personal finance by reducing the number of credit cards you own. If you chose the most common credit card company in your country you should be fine with one card only. Having one card only will have the following benefits:

  • One statement only, so it is easy to check all payments made
  • Less risk of overspending
  • In case of loss of the card only one hotline to call
  • A lean wallet

If you travel a lot or pay a lot for your business it might make sense to have a second card. Your primary card company might not be that strong in other countries. Especially with a corporate card from your company you should strictly separate private and business usage of credit cards although this might not be required by your company’s regulations. Keeping these accounts separate will allow you to easily match expenses for business and the reimbursement from your company.

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