There are many different types of holidays and travel experiences you can choose from. From a weekend camping, package holidays abroad, Inter-railing around Europe to backpacking across Australia.
Depending on where you are going there can be varying amounts of planning, packing and preparation before your trip.
Different countries can sometimes have different laws, rules and regulations and visa requirements regarding travellers, so you should always check before you go.
This section can give you advice and information on the different types of travelling, how to plan, what to take, how to manage your money and what arrangements you might need to make.
Whether you want to travel for a weekend or a year, go to the other side of the world or the other side of Wales, planning properly will help you enjoy your trip more.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office has a travel advice for 225 countries and territories around the world, it’s a good place to start.
There are many travel books and guides (such as Lonely Planet and Rough Guide) you can use to help you plan where you want to go on holiday, and what you will need to do before you go there. They can help you identify the sites you most want to see, and suggest an itinerary for your trip. Websites such as TripAdvisor and these suggestions from Nomadic Matt can also be helpful.
Before you go, go through The Mix’s checklist for travelling to make sure you have everything.
You can apply, renew and update passports on the Gov.UK site. You have to pay for a passport with under-16s costing less than a full adult passport, prices can be found here. The Post Office offers a Passport checking service.
If your passport is lost or stolen overseas, you should contact the nearest British Embassy, High Commission or Consulate immediately for advice.
It is a good idea to make a photocopy of the photo pages of your passport and keep it in a safe place separate to your passport when you go on holiday.
A visa is an official document which allows you to travel to certain countries. Any visas you are issued with will be attached to one of the pages in your passport.
As a British Citizen with a UK passport, you can get into 175 countries and territories around the world visa-free or visa-on-arrival. Check the entry requirements on the country you wish to visit on the FCO’s Foreign Travel Advice page. Do so with plenty of time before you travel, as it may take a while to acquire a visa for some countries and some may charge you for one.
Vaccinations, Health, and Safety
Check the health section on the country you wish to visit on the FCO’s Foreign Travel Advice page for info on what vaccinations you may need. Also have a look at NHS Choices’ Travel vaccinations pages for more info and what you can get for free on the NHS.
If you are taking any medication, make sure you have enough supplies to take with you and find out if you can get hold of the medication abroad.
Apply for a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) to ensure you are covered for any accident or illness is covered while you are away.
Be careful with what you eat and drink, particularly in hot countries. If you are in a country which has tap water unsuitable for drinking, buy bottled water.
Finally have a read of The Mix’s Safety when travelling blog.
The Money Advice Service has a great article called ‘Travel money options – cash, cards and traveller’s cheques‘. Also have a nosey at our money section. Finally The Mix has an article called Travel on a budget.
If you are going on holiday it is important that you get travel insurance so that if anything happens to you while you are away you will not have to pay for medical treatment.
Make sure you have an EHIC and that it is valid for when you travel in the Europe Union.
Always keep the contact details of your insurance company and your policy to hand so that you can quickly contact it in case of an emergency.
Apps & Games
The Guardian recently published ‘10 of the best travel apps … that you’ll actually use‘ while TimeOut has 50 travel apps to get your teeth into.
Some Useful Organisations & Links
- Gov.UK’s Foreign Travel Advice
- ABTA is the UK’s largest travel association
- Interrail.eu is the official online sales channel for Interrail passes
- STA Travel is a travel company that focusses on students and backpackers
- FitForTravel – Travel health information for people travelling abroad from the UK
- Globallove Youth Trust is a Cardiff-based charity that offers travel and volunteering opportunities to young people
- ICS (International Citizen Service) offers international volunteering opportunity open to all 18-25 year olds, backed by the UK government
For more organisations, services or info about holidays and travelling, check out our database or contact Meic, the advocacy, advice and information helpline for children and young people in Wales – Freephone: 080880 23456 / Text: 84001, Instant Message.
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