10 Questions To Ask Yourself Before A Trip

10 Questions To Ask Yourself Before A Trip

Traveling doesn't have to be stressful.
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July is the month so many people travel all around the world. Well, I am about to leave on a trip myself and have a routine that I think would be beneficial to others traveling too. Here are 10 questions I ask myself before I leave for any trip.

1. What kind of electronics do I need?

So many countries have different electric systems than America, so make sure to research what kind of plugs they have and the adapters you may need. Trust me, you do not want to be in the middle of a country where you don't speak the language, and you've just burned out the lights in the bathroom and fried your hair dryer.

2. Where is the closest hospital, grocery store and pharmacy?

Before I plan a trip, I investigate different destination options and how close each are to a hospital, grocery store and pharmacy. Personally, I like the destination to be close to a hospital that is nearby and easily accessible. Also, going to local grocery stores and markets can be a great way to be immersed in the culture as well as a prime location to find a snack for those afternoon cravings. Sometimes pharmacies can sell both food and medicine, so that is a good resource to have too.

3. What clothes do I need?

This question can be pretty tricky! Research the destination and make a list of possible clothes to bring. There are actually a lot of blogs that you can use for this very reason. If you know what season it will be, then use that to your advantage. Laundry is also a good area to investigate and think about when packing.

So, for colder weather, I usually bring more clothing than I actually need just so I can mix and match and layer. As someone who goes back and forth between cold Kansas winters and warm Florida winters, I cannot stress enough having a quality winter coat that will keep you warm. If you do not know how cold the temperatures will actually feel, then ere on the side of colder because then you will be prepared!

And, for warmer weather, I try to mix and match outfits with skirts or shorts, and T-shirts and blouses as much as possible. I also bring dresses for those days you just don't want to wear pants, but still feel fabulous.

As always, make sure to take a raincoat, sweater, sweatshirt and tennis shoes.

4. What shoes do I need?

If you know you're going to be walking a lot, then bring quality tennis shoes or sandals. But make sure those sandals are supportive, either they have good soles to support your arches or they wrap around your feet so they won't break. Only bring flip-flops for pool or beach days; do not walk around in them. There is nothing worse than touring a city when suddenly your flip-flop breaks. Hiking boots and tennis shoes are great shoes for colder weather and they are really good for your feet!

5. What are the phones like and what are the emergency numbers?

Phones are a complicated accessory to use when traveling, especially trying to navigate not using too much data and how to make calls. In each country, there is a different number you call for an ambulance, police and fire fighters. Make sure you know those numbers should you ever need to. I have yet to figure out the best system of using phones abroad, but as long as you have Wi-Fi and an app like WhatsApp, then you should be fine.

6. What is my itinerary?

I always like to have a general idea of what my schedule is going to be from day to day and let people know how they can contact me. Plus, making a list of all the activities you're going to do can help you figure out what clothes and shoes you need to pack.

7. What is the currency?

If you are traveling to another country, then you are going to be using a different form of currency. Research the currency exchange rate and try to get some of that currency before you leave. Whether or not you're going to do a lot of shopping, you will need some money to pay for the basics. And, arriving in a country without any of the different form of money is not a good idea. One, it can be hard to find a place that does currency exchanges and two, what if you need to buy something but have no way to pay for it?

8. What is the culture? Are there any rules or norms?

This question more so applies to when you are visiting some historical or religious sites because I know some countries require women to have shoulders covered, or other unspoken rules like that. But, research the culture and language because it can be helpful to know. For example, I have observed that French people hardly ever wear shorts. Even if it is 100 degrees outside, they either wear light pants or dresses, never shorts. That can be good to know, especially if you are trying to immerse yourself in the French culture.

9. What kind of food do they have?

Food is one of my favorite parts of traveling and a great way to learn more about your destination. If you do have any food allergies, then do some research about common cultural dishes and make sure to always bring any medication you may need. Last summer, a family member was having an allergic reaction and luckily we had medicine to administer and a phone to dial the emergency number. It was an experience I would not wish on anyone, but have learned from too.

10. What documents should I bring and what do I do if I lose my passport?

I recommend taking your passport, driver's license, health insurance card and photo copies of all of these. Also, know your social security number to make the process of getting a new passport easier.

Research where the closest American embassy is to your destination. Losing your passport is often an unfortunate reality of traveling abroad, but the U.S. embassy will do their best to help you.

When you lose your passport, immediately report it missing by going to the U.S. embassy. This process is definitely a long one, but you can speed it up by bringing these documents to the embassy.

If you are abroad, then here is more information about what to do.

Cover Image Credit: Zoë's photo

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I Blame My Dad For My High Expectations

Dad, it's all your fault.
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I always tell my dad that no matter who I date, he's always my number one guy. Sometimes I say it as more of a routine thing. However, the meaning behind it is all too real. For as long as I can remember my dad has been my one true love, and it's going to be hard to find someone who can top him.

My dad loves me when I am difficult. He knows how to keep the perfect distance on the days when I'm in a mood, how to hold me on the days that are tough, and how to stand by me on the days that are good.

He listens to me rant for hours over people, my days at school, or the episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' I watched that night and never once loses interest.

He picks on me about my hair, outfit, shoes, and everything else after spending hours to get ready only to end by telling me, “You look good." And I know he means it.

He holds the door for me, carries my bags for me, and always buys my food. He goes out of his way to make me smile when he sees that I'm upset. He calls me randomly during the day to see how I'm doing and how my day is going and drops everything to answer the phone when I call.

When it comes to other people, my dad has a heart of gold. He will do anything for anyone, even his worst enemy. He will smile at strangers and compliment people he barely knows. He will strike up a conversation with anyone, even if it means going way out of his way, and he will always put himself last.

My dad also knows when to give tough love. He knows how to make me respect him without having to ask for it or enforce it. He knows how to make me want to be a better person just to make him proud. He has molded me into who I am today without ever pushing me too hard. He knew the exact times I needed to be reminded who I was.

Dad, you have my respect, trust, but most of all my heart. You have impacted my life most of all, and for that, I can never repay you. Without you, I wouldn't know what I to look for when I finally begin to search for who I want to spend the rest of my life with, but it might take some time to find someone who measures up to you.

To my future husband, I'm sorry. You have some huge shoes to fill, and most of all, I hope you can cook.

Cover Image Credit: Logan Photography

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4 Must-See Destinations You Need To Check Out

My top 4 favorite Youtube travel diaries and must-see travel destinations.

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With the endless opportunities and various cultures the world has to offer, there is nothing more I want to do than to explore the many different walks of life. While I am always on the lookout for new places to add to my travel board on Pinterest, there is no better way to get travel inspiration than by watching some travel diaries on Youtube where adventure enthusiasts showcase their journey through a camera lens. With that being said, I have put together my top four favorite travel diaries that will inspire you to visit these must-see destinations.

1. Santorini, Greece - Tess Christine

Ever since the year 2008 when my grandma introduced me to the movie "Mamma Mia", I have wanted to visit the islands of Greece. I mean who wouldn't love the photogenic architecture and jaw-dropping views? One of my go-to Youtubers, Tess Christine, visited this past summer and uploaded a slow-motion aesthetically pleasing travel vlog. Whether it be the unbelievably stunning sunsets or the black sand beaches, Santorini, Greece is definitely somewhere I want to explore.

2. Portland, Oregon - Aspyn Ovard

Traveling the world doesn't necessarily mean traveling overseas. There are plenty of perfect destinations for any travel enthusiast right here in the United States. For instance, after watching Aspyn Ovard's Portland, Oregon travel diary, I fell in love with it. Ranging from the picture perfect color changing trees throughout the many hiking trails, to the many different biking trails and the one of a kind beaches, there is something to do in Portland, Oregon all year round.

3. Banff, Alberta - Brad & Hailey Devine

After watching Brad & Hailey Devine's travel guide of Banff, Alberta, I want to stop what I am doing and plan a trip to Canada as soon as possible. With the extremely beautiful mountain range, miles of trees, the various hiking trails and the incredible lake views, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

4. Bali, Indonesia - Aspyn Ovard

If the breathtaking rolling hills of Bali doesn't convince you to visit, then the delicious one of a kind food will. I never thought of visiting this incredible island off of Indonesia that is known for forested volcanic mountains, beaches and coral reefs, until I watched Aspyn Ovard's video that showcased the many wonders of Bali. It's the places like this that make you want to pack your bags and plan a trip discovering the never before seen destinations.

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