Travel

Two Essential Tips for International Travel

“Live with no excuses and travel with no regrets.” – Oscar Wilde

Salut!

After a brief break from blogging while Ma Famille and I relocated from Illinois to Vermont, I am ready to get back to writing! I’m thinking about 2020 travel plans – which hopefully includes trips to London and Tokyo – and want to share my two top trip tips.

Villingen-Schwenningen, Germany, October 2018

I love to travel and have been lucky enough to visit lots of exciting places in the United States and abroad, from small towns in the Deep South to Europe to islands in the Caribbean. These trips allow me not only to experience new cultures and cuisines, but to indulge in another hobby: list-making and organizing.

Over the years, I have compiled and refined my Ultimate Packing List (the subject of another post). While the List covers items to pack and take, I have also discovered two other pre-departure considerations to make travel easier and more efficient.

TSA Precheck and Global Entry

Het Elfte Gebod, a brown bar in Amsterdam, Netherlands, December 2015

Let me be very clear: I hate waiting in line. I would rather go to the dentist. Thus I highly recommend purchasing TSA Precheck and Global Entry to ease, respectively, passage through security lines in U.S. airports and reentry to the United States after traveling abroad. Yes, there are fees, paperwork, and in-person interviews required, but status is good for five years. Also, Global Entry includes Precheck. (Which I found out after I got Precheck first. Le sigh.)

Pre-Purchased Tickets

Brian Boru’s Harp at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, May 2017

If you plan to visit a popular sight or location when traveling, I highly recommend pre-purchasing entrance tickets online. Such tickets will often specify a date and time for your visit. Then you can take your printed pass(es) with you or store it on your smartphone.

When we visited Amsterdam, Mon Mari and I pre-purchased tickets to visit Anne Frank House, skipping an interminable line in the Dutch drizzle to see one of the most popular sites in the city. In Dublin, we breezed passed a line to see the Book of Kells at Trinity College that wrapped around the block. The prices are the same, but the peace of mind is priceless!

What are your never-fail travel tips?

Merci for reading!

Amitiés,

Katie

2 thoughts on “Two Essential Tips for International Travel”

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