Travel Tips!

By Pat Whitehall 

Season is over for many of the citizens of Florida and now school is out, so everyone’s thoughts have turned to summer and vacations.  Many people will want to travel up north where it may be a tad cooler, or even less humid than here in sunny Florida. 

While planning your trip, excitement overpowers the thoughts of anything going wrong.  But, unfortunately, accidents can happen and it’s always a good idea to have some plans in place to offset any problems which may arise.  Getting sick, injured or hurt or even caught up in a natural disaster may be out of your control, but you can take charge by preparing for life’s unfortunate happenings. 

One of the tips to help you be better prepared is to bring a travel companion.  There are many ways to find an appropriate one, such as travel websites where there will be others of similar interests.  If you like to travel by yourself, get familiar with the destination ahead of the actual trip.  Make sure you understand the currency, dress codes, transportation and local customs.  Keep in touch with loved ones often and consider sharing your location by smart phone. 

When you must take medications, be sure to have all of them on hand.  If there are health problems and you need your doctor’s note or some medical documents, add that to your packing.  If your destination requires plenty of physical activity, make certain you get your necessary rest, and stay hydrated.  

A possibility of a natural disaster may be another thing to consider. Some of them can be monitored ahead of time.  Weather reports and the conditions at your destination should be checked before leaving on said trip.  Global politics are also a consideration as they may change.  There are advisories to check on the U.S. Department of State’s travel advisory list.  There is also a program called STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program) which sends alerts for different countries you may be visiting and also provide the links to U.S. Embassies. 

A back up plan for medical emergencies is suggested to help protect you in the U.S. or abroad.  You also want to protect your family and your wallet against unforeseen costs.  For more information, you can call the VFW Member Benefits Department at 1-800-821-2606.  Don’t be shy, they are there to help you and if you do call, you’ll be glad you did!

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