Before you go
Every traveler, regardless of age, needs a valid passport when visiting another country. Many countries require that the expiry date on your passport be valid beyond the date you expect to return home. Ensure you are informed about any travel requirements well ahead of your trip, and leave yourself enough time should you need to apply for or renew your Canadian passport.
If you are traveling to another country, check visa requirements through their embassy before booking your trip. You should also contact a travel clinic in your area to see if any immunizations are recommended when traveling to that country. Be aware that some countries collect a departure tax at the airport.
International driving permit
Planning on driving in a foreign country? Make sure you have your permit before leaving Canada.
Wherever your travels take you, make sure you are prepared.
With ever-changing policies and fees, ensure you know what the current rules are for your airline. Air Canada, WestJet and all other airlines will have size and weight limitations for both carry-on and checked baggage. For your convenience, we’ve compiled a list of websites for the world’s top airlines here.
Cell phone coverage & Wi-Fi
You have several options for coverage when traveling. The most convenient option is to check with your cell provider for roaming packages. If you only plan to use your phone occasionally, check if your hotel has Wi-Fi or visit a local cafe that offers access. Be careful not to access sensitive accounts like banking or credit cards without first setting up a virtual private network (VPN).
Learn about your destination
Make the most of your trip by reading up on local culture, cuisine and history. Being informed will help when planning your trip and ultimately make your journey more meaningful.
Tours and day trips
Plan ahead by booking excursions or tickets in advance to enjoy stress-free travel. Whether it’s tickets to Disneyland, a walking tour through Venice, a trek to Machu Pichu or a multi-day tour through Vietnam, Laos and Thailand, tailor a package that’s right for you.
Discovering new places can amaze you and expand your horizons. Like any situation, you should keep a few things in mind to help minimize risk.
- Do your research: As mentioned above, you should know about your destination before you arrive for the greatest benefit. But you should also check for any travel advisories and know what areas are safe to travel to avoid any unwelcome surprises.
- Blend in: You will draw less attention if you explore as if you were a local, making you less vulnerable to scammers. Start your day with a plan on where to go and how to get there, being discreet when checking maps or asking for directions.
- Be aware: Always be mindful of your surroundings to avoid getting in a sticky situation. Don’t leave anything unattended, whether you’re reserving a table while you stand in line to get your morning coffee or taking a selfie for your Instagram account. Always keep an eye on your belongings. Also, be wary of public Wi-Fi and consider signing up for VPN service to prevent hackers from accessing your data and accounts.
- Safeguard your valuables: Invest in a sturdy lock for your luggage while traveling and use a hotel safe when available. Use a money belt or hidden pouch to hold extra cash for the day, leaving the rest secured. Ensure your wallet or purse has RFID protection to avoid electronic pickpocket of your identity or credit card information. A wide range of protective packs and gear is available, with interior pockets, locking zippers and slash-proof material.
- Make copies of important documents: You never know when you may need a copy of your passport, driver’s licence or other critical item. Scan copies ahead of time with copies stored securely online and a hardcopy printed with you when you travel. Keep these separate from your actual documents. And have emergency info close at hand, including contact info for credit card companies, embassies and your insurance provider.
- Keep friends or family informed: Wherever you go, make sure someone back home knows where you are. Send a copy of your itinerary to someone you trust, then check in regularly. If you will be posting updates of your adventures to social media, remember that anyone in your network will be able to see that you are away from your home.
- Get travel insurance: Always travel with the appropriate protection to avoid any expensive surprises in the event of an accident.
As a professional who has received comprehensive training and is well-traveled, I can help simplify all your travel arrangements and can provide expert advice to ensure your trip is worry-free.