Travel Necessities: 5 Things To-Do to Avoid Travel Hell

Matthew Ambrosio

Posted on August 28 2019

Guarantee you are good to go by being travel savvy like the pros. If you are not in the travel industry or don’t travel very often you may be in the dark about a detail that could derail your plans.

It’s very important to make a little To-Do list before you let your hair down and go on holiday, especially when traveling out of the country. Avoid costly rebooking fees and wasted days!

So here I am sitting in a pretty cool hotel in Soho NY instead of in Rome for a layover to Malta…

My last trip out of the country was overseas in Europe in 2017. It’s been a while and I can’t wait to get back. I travel to the islands of Malta to visit friends that are really more like family and of course to enjoy Paradise. The beaches and water are extraterrestrial when it comes to natural beauty and the people who live there are proud of their home and can’t wait to show you. I found Malta in London. I was teaching a makeup class at the International Makeup Artist Trade Show in 2012 and after my class a woman named Violet Vella introduced herself to me and she was very sweet. She invited me to Malta to visit her and I eventually did. Since then I’ve gone back at least once every two years. Now that I know where it is! They call it Europe’s best kept secret and it truly is. Malta is an island nation south of Sicily.  It’s its own country with its own language and boasts a dynamic ancient history. They are the most beautiful islands I have ever been to in my life, hence why I am heading back for a fourth time. When I love something I stick with it.

I was telling a friend before I left how Malta is like a really good dream and it doesn’t go away when you wake up. I could not wait to get in the air.

Unfortunately that wasn’t going to happen. The airline told me I could not travel because my passport expired less than 3 months from the date of my return. Turns out that even if your passport is valid that doesn’t mean you can travel to a different country. You can book your ticket with no issues but you can’t check in. Why call it a valid passport?

So, before we start fantasizing about our international adventures there are some items that need to be taken care of for a guaranteed stress-free travel experience.


5 Things Before You Travel Out of the Country!

1. Get your documents in order

First things first! Is your passport valid? I know you are probably saying “of course it is” however are you aware that if your passport book expires 3-9 months from the date of your return trip you will NOT be permitted travel to many international destinations? If you find yourself in this harrowing situation you will realize quickly there are very few options to save your trip. If you are dead set like me on getting to your destination you do have options but again very few. First you must get the airline to rebook your flight with the promise that you will get your passport before you depart. How do you get a passport in less than 24 hours? It is possible! Find your local passport office and it is imperative that you get on line two hours before the office opens and don’t worry you won’t be alone. This happens to a lot of people.
Unfortunately not many of them share? This experience was new to me. You will have to pay an expedition fee but you can have your passport in about four hours from the time you submit your application at your local passport agency. You will need a few more items to make this happen and all of the information is accessible online. I have provided the links below to give you a head start. Most importantly, I know it is stressful but keep your cool, be positive and make it happen.

Read’s Travel Checklist for information on the travel documents you need and view important details about dates and validity.

Renew Your U.S. Passport

Apply for a New U.S. Passport

2. Purchase a Universal Travel Power Adapter All in One Worldwide International Wall Charger

Without this gadget you are back in the Stone Age if you travel abroad because outlets are not created equal. No electricity for you! No communication, no electronics like laptops to work and basically any portable device you need to survive will be rendered useless. I love this universal travel power adapter by CleverTrips. At $21 it’s little more expensive than your typical universal travel power adapter but it is super functional and high quality. It comes with a case and doesn’t take up much space. It has four USB ports, comes with a cable which can be used to charge an iPhone and even comes with a spare fuse. You can also use it to plug in a hair dryer, tablet and more.

3. Call your wireless phone provider and purchase an international data package

Avoid getting a massive bill when you return by purchasing an international data plan that suits your needs while you roam abroad. Some cell phone service providers have several levels and options to choose from. I prefer a package that allows for unlimited texting, has a reasonable rate if I want to make a phone call and has a reasonable cost. Be sure to understand how the data use works. There are limits so don’t find yourself with a balance that equals the price of your overseas airfare.

4. Notify your bank and credit card companies of your travels

Make sure your cashflow is not interrupted! If you are using your debit or credit cards in another country and the banks don’t know it’s you, there is a good chance your accounts will be frozen to protect you from what they might think is fraudulent activity. Then you’ve got to get on the phone, make an expensive call and worst of all, stop enjoying your amazing and well deserved time disconnecting. Trust me, a quick call to your bank and credit card companies is the best thing you can do before you fly.

5. Exchange your money before you leave the country

If you travel with cash, exchanging your currency before you leave the country is less expensive and easier than doing it while in a different country. Purchase your Euro’s in the states by contacting your bank at least 48 hours before you travel because it will need to be ordered ahead of time. Get it out of the way so your not worrying about it when you land and greeting your friends who can’t wait to spend time with you. It would be much better time spent in a restaurant by the sea than searching for a bank or currency exchange to find cash.


If you want to learn more about the CleverTrips Universal Power Adapter you can get it on Amazon. Make sure you check out the description, make sure you check out the reviews and it’s the right item for you. If you decide that you do want it and add it to your amazon cart I will get a small commission from that purchase.

Happy & Safe Travels!

The post Travel Necessities: 5 Things To-Do to Avoid Travel Hell appeared first on Life Island by AMBRO.

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