As the easing of lockdown measures finally approaches, for many, travel can, at last, extend beyond the home and walks at the local park—holidaymakers are once again at liberty to experience warmer climes and exotic destinations.

Like many life skills from a now seemingly distant memory, you might be a little rusty as to how to properly prepare for when you plan on jetting off. From packing to airport parking, here’s a reminders list of the crucial considerations for your well-deserved break.

  • Check That Your Passport is Valid

After the obligatory eyebrow raise at the photo, check the expiration date of your passport. The only thing worse than arriving at the airport without your passport is remembering to pack it but finding out it has expired at the check-in desk.

Remember many destinations require a passport to be valid six months beyond the departure date from the country you are visiting. If you’ve really left it late a UK passport can be obtained using the one-week Fast Track service.

  • Other necessary travel documents

Ensure all other travel documents for the destination are in order. These might include visas or an ESTA if you’re traveling to the states. Check what is required for your arrival country.

  • Pack your meds and prescriptions

Pack a sufficient quantity of your prescription medication to last you your stay. It is also recommended to have spare in your carry-on should something happen to your hold luggage. If you wear glasses don’t forget your prescription sunglasses. If you do leave them behind, you’ll be stuck with a pair of last-minute standard shades that will have you choosing between blocking the glare of the sun and being able to see your daiquiri on the table in front of you. 

  • Arrange airport parking

The convenience of airport parking is surpassed only by a taxi directly to the terminal. Often, covered parking is available so your car isn’t exposed to the elements for the duration of your break. Organizing airport parking ahead of time is one less thing to worry about when you arrive at the airport or when you return.

Summer travel essentials

  • Sort your holiday insurance

Now is a great time to renew your travel insurance if you were prudent enough to cancel it when moving around was restricted. Make sure your chosen insurance package covers the area to which you intend to travel and for the length of your stay. Check the amount of excess on the policy and look for optional extras you may want to be covered, especially if you are traveling with golf clubs or expensive luggage.

  • Are vaccinations required for where you’re headed?

Verify the recommended local vaccinations well in advance if you are traveling to the tropics. This list now of course includes countries where full COVID vaccinations or negative tests are a requirement if you don’t want to spend the first part of your holiday in isolation.

  • Make your car hire reservation

Organizing your car rental before touching down at the airport can save time, money, and hassle and ensure that your chosen vehicle size is available to you when you land. Don’t forget your driver’s license.

  • Personal technology (phone, camera, tablet)

Pack your eBook reader or iPad and load it up with the books you’ve been meaning to read and a selection of your favorite movies—and a power pack and plug adapters so you can charge your devices while abroad. While your smartphone might take a decent snap, your DSLR will capture those memories more impressively, so add it to your luggage along with a spare battery.

  • Prepare for the climate

Take a look at the local weather forecast and pack the right clothes for your trip. Grab your swimming gear, sunscreen, and towels for the beach or the poolside.

It’s been quite the wait for this getaway so make sure it goes without a hitch. Put together an essentials checklist and spend your days enjoying good weather and good company without having to worry about things you may have forgotten.