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10 Tech Savvy Tips for Planning a Trip Abroad & More…

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As you know if you are a current reader of this blog, I am going to Paris in Sept with Design Trust to attend Maison Objet ,as well as many other exciting events.  I will then travel to the Design Festival in London with Blogtour London sponsored by Modenus !  I am over the moon excited about these excursions abroad!  In anticipation of my upcoming travel plans, I just may need this shirt from Banana Republic!  I love how it is styled with leopard pants, a little bling and pink clutch?  Aimez-vous?
I promised more traveling abroad tips, so here goes…  All suggestions can be done weeks prior to travel so all there is to worry about later is packing for your trip!
1) Call your credit card company if  planning to buy tickets on the Euro Star or other things aboard prior to the trip.  This saves the hassle of being locked out of your account and then spending hours on end, to get things accounts resolved. (Trust me, I just got off an hour long conversation  with my bank!  It’s finally fixed, but it took quite a bit
 of “splaining Lucy!)
2) Alert your bank of your proposed travel dates immediately!  Again, don’t wait til the week before you leave, to get this done! Don’t want to forget to do this!
3) Download a currency convertor on your phone.  There are several recommended ones like  Currency Convertor or Google Currency Convertor or XE Currency.  I downloaded Currency Banknotes because it  shows a picture of the currency.  I am so visual, I know what the money likes like and that I have the right money.
4) Download a language translation app on your phone too.  I downloaded Translater with Speech , this app allows you to type in a phrase, choose the language you wish the phrase to be translated into and the phrases repeat  in the chosen language.  I also downloaded ISpeak French which is quick written language conversion
5) I have an iphone5, so most of the links are apps for that, but most are available for other phones as well.  Make sure to first download Free Wifi  and get connected,so roaming bills aren’t incurred!  Also, make sure to turn off any push notifications prior to travel.  These can eat up text messages, of limited texts plans.  (We’ll talk more about that later) 
 Here are the travel Apps worth checking out :
         Lonely Planet –  ( Some specific cities are available)
                                     I downloaded Lonely Planet Paris & London, at
                                     $3.99 each, but wow! Worth it! Great info!!!
         Skype –               Why buy expensive international plans when you 
                                    can Skype for 2 cents a minute with this app?
         Vonage –            Can make free calls to Facebook friends over 3G  
                                     & wifi with this app. Read a review here.
         All SubWayHD – Shows a map of all subway stations (Domestic & 
                                     European) for quick reference.
         Trip It –                Helps with organizing your trip, can input all travel
                                    data as well as flight info.  Here is a video about it!
        Uber Car –          Why wait for a taxi, especially places like Paris
                                    where taxis won’t stop on the curb or come quickly,
                                    Simply input your info and Uber Car comes to you!
                                    Here is an invitation for you to join, if you
                                    are interested.  Uber car is in domestic & overseas
                                    Sign up here and we both get $10
Lockbox –                   This is an app I use all the time,not just for travel 
                                    I put in passwords, pin #’s, credit card numbers,
                                    online acct. #’s, bank acct. #’s and any other
                                   numeric info I need to remember and keep safe!                 
                                   It’s a life saver to have acct. info at your fingertips.
6) Travel folder or pouch – to put all your travel documents in so that  they are all in one place for easy access.  If keeping online, make sure to tag each email, so you can access easily. If physical documents, put in an envelope or travel pouch.  Here’s a nice one from REI, it is black but that’s ok for papers because you don’t want them to be too visible.  I would also attache to my carry bag via a lanyard or ribbon, so it won’t fall out or get taken out easily from your bag.  Lots of other options on the link
over at Zappos.  click here 
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7) A convenient, more secure and paperless way to keep up with  documents is to scan them – Download Genius Scan on your smart phone – scan your documents and email to yourself, send to your travel companion and to someone at home. That way if your documents get stolen you have a picture of each of them as well as if something were to happen to you, the person at home would have your documents.  If yours get phone stolen, then the person traveling with you would have your documents for easy access. As a matter if fact, I use this all the time when sending paperwork to people instead of faxing because once I take the photo, it is stored in my phone for easy access.  I no longer have to go looking for my tax id papers or my business license, it
 right there in my phone. 
8) Make Copies of your travel documents – If you don’t want to scan your documents, make two copies, put one set inside the lining of your luggage and the other set to be left behind for the person at home.  If you want you can make three copies and give one to a travel partner to store inside their luggage lining along with their own.
Here’s what you will want copied or scanned which
I borrowed from this website, go there to read why this is important!
  • Passport (the identification page)
  • Visa
  • Travel insurance
  • Driver’s license
  • Health information (see What’s my basic medical info? for details)
  • Credit cards (see Don’t travel with a copy of your bank cards; we’ve got a much better system for an innovative way to secure your credit card number.)
  • Traveler’s checks, although we’re not convinced anyone uses these anymore
  • Travel itinerary
  • Airline tickets
  • Hotel or lodging reservation confirmations
  • Car rental reservation confirmation
  • Cruise tickets
  • Vaccination certificates (Some countries require a vaccination certificate for specific infectious diseases. For example, travelers entering Venezuela from certain countries are required to show a current yellow fever vaccination certificate.)
  • Any other pre-paid confirmations
9) Make sure your passport is up to date! I like to keep my in
a nice little case, so I can stick my plane tickets in it as well for
easy access at the airport.  I like this one:
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Here’s  a picture of mine!  I know it’s bright, but it sure is easy
to find inside a dark bag, which is important.  Don’t buy black for that reason, too hard to see in your bags!  I typically like to get one that
is representative of where I am traveling.  I got this one when I went to
China.  I like it, but if I find one that looks more Parisian or British, I 
may have to splurge for a new one!
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10) Start immediately planning your wardrobe.  (More on that later).
For now check out my travel board on Pinterest here for packing ideas and travel trips.  Also, follow our Blogtour London boardhere!
Want to know more about Modenus?  Check out the interview my friend and fellow designer, Patti Johnson did with Veronika Miller founder of Modenus on her blog, Chatti Patti Talks Design here!
I leave on September 5th, so make sure you follow my blog on google+, bloglovin (lisamendedesign), instagram for candids (Lisa Mende Design)
and twitter for updates (@lisamendedesign) I promise lots of fun and interesting design related events!!!!!
All the information in this post was compiled after reading and researching apps and travel info.  If anyone has used these apps and has comments or suggestions we would love to hear from you!  Any travel tips you can add?  Please feel free to comment!
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