Travel Tips: New Year’s Checklist for Frequent Travelers

Planning to do some traveling in 2014? Here’s my handy checklist, something that will help you to remember the important things to bring, buy and prepare before you head to your next destination.

Check your Passport

Philippine PassportIs your passport valid?

A passport is valid for five years upon issuance, but airlines and most countries require passports with validity of six months prior to the expiry date indicated in the passport.

If you dont have an e-passport yet, get one as soon as you can. The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) recently announced that all non-machine readable passports will be phased out by November 24, 2015 and may no longer be extended beyond October 31, 2015.

Will it be valid for the length of your trip?

Better be sure, its hard to process passport renewal abroad specially in those countries that has no Philippine Embassy.

Whats your flight status?
Whats your flight status?

Check your Flight Schedule

Before you walk out the door of your home or hotel, make sure your flight is leaving as scheduled. Your flight might have been moved or it could be cancelled and you can save yourself a trip or a rush if you keep on top of the most recent updates. Check your mobile phone, Airlines normally send text messages for flight updates or better call the airline to verify.

Prohibited Items Onboard
Prohibited Items Onboard

Check the list of prohibited items on board

These days it’s really easy to bring something into the security line that you won’t be allowed to bring on board. Whether it’s a bottle of water or a pair of tweezers, make sure you’re putting that prohibited stuff into the bag you’re going to check.

Check your Travel Vouchers

Do you have hotel and airline gift certificates? Make sure any hotel or airline gift certificates are not expiring. Put them in your bag or book now for your future stay or flight to avoid expiration.

When is the next non-working holiday?

Check the 2014 Official Philippine Public Holiday Schedule to figure out when you’ll have time off again. Start planning now so you can actually get away when you’ve got the time.

Create a Vacation Essentials Packing Checklist

It may be true that you can get whatever else you need while on vacation, there are a few things you cannot forget. Most obviously is your passport and any documents you need for travel, like plane tickets, reservation info for hotels, and information about how to get to the places you’re staying. There are going to be other things that are essential for you. Make a list so you don’t forget the things you really want or need, including medications and extremely important things like your camera and mobile phone chargers.

Pacsafe Pouchsafe 200 Travel Organizer
Pacsafe Pouchsafe 200 Travel Organizer

Buy a Travel Documents Organizer

It may not seem necessary to you, but once you’ve got a travel document organizer, you’ll never look back. This is important stuff and it makes sense to take care of it. Plus, it’ll be easy to access all the things you’ll need. In this organizer, you can put your hotel reservation voucher, airline tickets, passport, foreign currency, travelers check (so 80’s) and your travel itinerary.

Always have a photocopy of the front and back of passports, IDs and credit cards

Copies of your travel documents and IDs are essential these days. If your passport gets lost or stolen, what will you do? Hopefully you’ll have a photocopy of your passport with you that you can show local authorities and the authorities at your embassy. It’s much easier to replace documents if you have a photocopy of the original. You should also scan them and email them to yourself so you can access a copy anywhere you’ve got wifi.

No matter how many times you’ve traveled, it is possible to make some of the basic mistakes. So just check this list, just in case, and make sure that anything else that is essential for you is included on your checklist. It’ll help you remember and ensure that you don’t find yourself in a bad situation.

Do have something to add? Write a comment below:)

Written by Melo Villareal

Melo Villareal is the Online Publisher of He is an Accountant by profession who left the corporate world at the age of 23 to explore his beautiful country and the rest of the world. Today, Melo works as a part-time Social Media Manager for local and international clients. His full-time work focuses on discovering interesting culture, explore different cuisines and take memorable photos from local and international destinations he's visiting.

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