Just as important as your plane ticket and hotel booking is your travel insurance. You might be tempted to save a few Ringgit and do without but that is never a good idea. Travel insurance gives you peace of mind and protects you from all sorts of issues, including loss of baggage, flight delays, missed connections and medical emergencies. Buy it at least 30 days before your trip so should anything untoward happen to you, your travel companion or family member within that time frame — for example, a serious illness — you can claim some benefits if you have to cancel your holiday.
Find Out if You Need a Vaccination
Do some research on the country you are visiting, and we do not just mean looking up tourist spots and pretty places for selfies. Take note of any health advisories and if there are any recommendations for vaccinations. Most developed countries do not require any jabs but if you are heading off the beaten track to places like sub-Saharan Africa or South America, you will need several vaccinations, including for yellow fever. See your doctor four to six weeks before you leave as some vaccinations require more than one injection.
Pack Some Creature Comforts
To make your flight as comfortable as possible, make sure you have these essentials ready. Long haul flights are great for catching up on movies and TV shows. If you do not want to be stuck with the cheap earphones that the airline provides, bring your own, along with the adapter that allows you to plug it into the airline’s earphone jack. Noise-cancelling or noise-isolating earphones work best at keeping airplane noises at bay.
Watch to catch up on some sleep instead? Bring a scarf. This has a dual purpose — you can roll it up to become a pillow or wrap it around yourself when you get cold. If you prefer to read, pack an e-book in your carry-on — it can store many titles and has the added benefit of not weighing much. Another carry-on essential is a battery pack, especially if you have several electronic items you cannot do without during the flight.
Being in an airplane cabin often leaves you feeling dehydrated. This is due to the low humidity of the air that is being circulated. Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking lots of water, and try to stay away from alcoholic beverages. Bring your own refillable bottle and ask the flight attendant to fill it up for you as soon as you board. The same air that makes your throat dry is also making your skin dry so bring along a tube of moisturiser (no more than 100ml) and keep reapplying throughout your flight.