- Pack or carry a photocopy of the front and back of each credit card you are carrying or username and passwords for each account. PS. Carry more than one credit card!
If your card is lost, stolen or compromised you'll need to contact the credit card company quickly. 800 numbers usually don't work when you're out of the country so you'll need local numbers. If you have access to your accounts via the internet you'll be able to monitor your usage and notify all necessary parties in case there is a problem.
- Carry your driver's license.
If you take your passport you may not think it's necessary but if your travel plans change and you need to rent a car or if you lose your passport and you need back up identification you'll be glad to have it.
- Your itinerary with confirmation numbers.
Seems obvious, but if you're only going to one city and one hotel, it's easy to think you won't need it. Was it the Hilton Inn or the Hilton Garden Inn, the Hyatt Hotel or Hyatt Place and they can be right down the street from each other, so near the airport doesn't always work. A confirmation number gives you something to talk about if the hotel tells you there is no reservation.
- Don't forget you health Insurance cards, your physicians office phone number, prescription drug information and pharmacists phone number at your home location.
Should you get sick while away from home and seek medical attention, the doctor will want to know what medications you are currently taking, this includes dosages. It's a good idea to have this information on you even if you're not traveling. You'd be surprised how easy it is to get a prescription from your doctor while you're away so come prepared. You'd also be surprised to know how often unexpected things happen while we're traveling.
- When possible, carry credit cards instead of debit cards.
Your banks protection coverage is much better with a credit card than it is with a debit card. Some car rentals companies won't rent a car with a debit card or if they do they can require a hefty deposit. A debit account can be cleaned out with a pin number and working on that while on vacation is no vacation.
I have been in the travel industry for over 25 years, as a flight attendant, travel agent and travel writer. I think all travelers should have the kind of inside information that professional travelers have. The business has changed over the years and those on the front lines deserve a lot of credit. And what they know can help all of us get more out of our travel experience.