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Travel tips

6 ways to prepare for your next trip now

May 26, 2021 by Kara Kramer

Add these travel to-dos to your list today, and you’ll be ready to make travel happen as soon as your dream destination says, “Come on over!”

See where you can travel right now →

traveler holding a US passport with boarding passes sticking out the top

1. Check your travel documents

It’s been a while since your passport’s seen the light of day. So dust it off and double-check the expiration date. If it extends at least six months beyond your date of reentry, you’re good. If not, you’ll need to get it renewed before your next international trip.

Start thinking about your driver’s license, too. With the deadline of Real ID now pushed back to 2025, U.S. travelers have some extra time to get the enhanced driver’s license that will be necessary for air travel. But, we don’t recommend waiting. All 50 states are now issuing Real IDs and it’s a great way to stay prepared for future travel.

Plan travel with confidence →

2. Find the perfect luggage

You’ll need a great duffel for a safari since wheeled luggage isn’t allowed out in the bush. Go Ahead staffer, Laura, recommends Patagonia’s Black Hole Duffel for its surprising spaciousness. And if you’re mentally preparing for greener pastures in Ireland, you’ll want a 21-inch, 4-wheeled carry-on to navigate those rolling hills (and international flights) with ease.

Heading to the Serengeti? Find more tips on packing for a safari →

three female travelers looking at the scenery as they stroll behind their tour director

3. Invest in great walking shoes

Whether you’re hoping to kick up some dust at the Grand Canyon or meander Rome’s cobblestone streets, you’ll need the right support for your feet. Look for durable, waterproof shoes for hiking, so you can trailblaze in any weather. As for city strolling, check out lightweight, sturdy, breathable walking shoes. (We love Allbirds.)

How to choose the best shoes for a walking tour →

4. Research your dream trip

Eat your way through Athens or explore ancient Incan ruins in Peru? It’s all there to experience on our trips, so take all this extra downtime to browse our incredible options and choose the perfect tour.

Our Tour Match Quiz can help, too. Take the quiz →

a traveler packing sweaters, khakis, and reusable masks into a carry-on suit case

5. Take stock of your travel essentials

Where are your outlet adaptors for Switzerland? Is your travel journal out of space for more adventures? And what happened to the charger for your noise-canceling headphones?

Now is the perfect time to do a full inventory of those must-have travel items, and make sure they’re ready to roll. While you’re at it, stock up on a few extra-comfy face masks for your trip—depending on when you travel, some countries may still require them when you’re on tour.

Confused about outlet adaptors while traveling? See our full guide on power adapters and converters →

6. Explore your interests

Be sure to explore highlights in the region you’re traveling to and add excursions that match your interests. Every Go Ahead Tour includes local expert guides who lead your on-tour experience and a Tour Director that takes care of all the details so you don’t miss a thing. Whether it’s food & wine, wildlife, or adventure you’re seeking, find a tour that matches your interests and you’re sure to discover something entirely new along the way.

No matter where you have your sight sets on traveling, these travel tips will help you be confident your next trip will run as smoothly as possible. Bon voyage!

Feeling prepared and ready to travel? Start planning a trip. Give us your best travel tips on our Facebook page.

Know before you goPacking tips
About the author | Kara Kramer
Growing up, Kara’s backyard was the Sonoran Desert where her love for exploration was ignited by dirt roads leading to petroglyphs and family road trips to sleepy Mexican fishing villages. Kara’s enjoyment for charting new territory continued with teaching abroad in Thailand, roaming wine cellar caves in Portugal, and swimming in the bioluminescent waters of the Caribbean. She’s always on the lookout for dive bars and a bowl of Vietnamese Pho (lime, basil, and jalapeño is the holy trinity).

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