Travel is back baby! And with that comes all the excitement of planning once in a lifetime adventures.
So, what things should you consider doing before your next holiday?
Travel may be one of the biggest purchases you make, outside of buying your home. And this is even more so, if you plan on making it a regular habit.
The best deals will most likely require full payment at time of booking. By setting up a travel fund, and putting a fixed amount in per week, you will be ready to secure the best offers when they are released.
Never have a I ever.. Gone overseas without travel insurance.
Insurance is not for the small things. It is for the life changing events that can financially bankrupt you.
A few years ago, on our snowboarding trip to Canada, my husband who is an experienced rider, ended up in a tree. A simple accident on a green run, but with life threatening implications. By all accounts he should never have survived. His injuries included 11 broken ribs completely detached and a ruptured spleen.
After 4 days in ICU, plus a few weeks in and out of hospital, we were medically evacuated back to Sydney. Our insurance bill topped over CAD$120,000. Without insurance, it would have meant selling our home to cover these expenses.
Too often we hear stories of travellers overseas needing help. Either they had no insurance, or were not covered for the activities they were undertaking. DFAT is not able to assist with these situations. Insurance should not be an afterthought, but part of your holiday budget planning.
Without Travel Insurance, you are on your own.
Once you are booked, start saving your spending money in the required currency.
For example, we use a Qantas Cash card, which allows us to lock in rates for various destinations. By the time we come to travel, our spending money is already converted and on a travel card ready to go.
And most of the time, we have succeeded in locking in a better exchange rate, than we would have at the time of travel.
Make your dining reservations as soon as possible.
As a personal travel manager, I book “must experience” dining for my clients, such as Sounds of Silence, Le Jules Verne, or Sky high dining at Banff Gondola to name a few. However, I also confirm reservations at local restaurants. Even prior to Covid, demand in peak holiday times could mean missing out on your first choice.
Book ahead especially if you are a larger group or travelling with children.
When you do your tax return, a professional accountant usually gets a better result than if you did it all by yourself (And it’s usually a lot less painful!). They are experts in their field and know all the ins and outs. They will ask questions and look for ways to get a better outcome for you. The same can be said of travel agents.
There are many stories of people booking online, only to be disappointed.
It could be anything from airline issues, unsuitable accommodation, or even non-existent operators. After a season of watching The Block, anyone that has attempted the “do it yourself” approach will know it can bring some unexpected results, and not always the ones you were hoping for!
As a personal travel manager, I apply my expertise to design a holiday that is just right for you. My focus is on value. What can sometimes appear lower in price, may not actually be apples for apples.
And in the current climate, travel can mean navigating last minute cancellations, schedule changes and more. It pays dividends to have an expert deal with this for you.
If you know anyone that could benefit from reading this, please share!
Kim Mason is a multi industry award-winning travel agent and local business leader finalist.
Find out more about Kim Mason Here