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Preparing for your holiday Back to News
Thursday 23rd March | Posted by On Foot Staff
Excitement is mounting, the clock is ticking down, and you want to be ready for your holiday! What are the things you need to prepare before you go away, so you can enjoy your trip without stress? Here are a few tips.
Walkers’ Pack – this is a comprehensive package of information for your holiday, including your personalised itinerary, detailed maps and route notes. There’s also lots of background information, suggestions of what you will need to take, places to eat, some basic help with language, transfer advice including timetables, luggage labels, a waterproof map holder, and sometimes a regional map or small guide book.
We will start to prepare your pack as soon as we’ve received your final payment and details of your intended travel plans. You should get it about a month before departure. We suggest you familiarise yourself with the contents in good time, as you may need to take action on some things.
Planning your journeys – you’ll have already discussed this with our bookings team, and we’ll send timetables in your pack relevant to your local transfers. There are some handy links on our website too, and do please ask if you need any help planning your journey.
Training – unless you are a regular hiker, you might want to take some longer walks than usual in the weeks before your holiday, not least so that you are aware of your stamina levels. Most importantly, wear the boots and backpack you’ll be travelling with, and make sure they’re comfortable! Bear in mind that there is likely to be different weather and terrain on your holiday route too.
Set up GPS – we highly recommend using GPS tracks for your holiday, and we supply these by email at the time we send your Walkers’ Pack. Even if you don’t want to use them all the time for navigation, they are invaluable for checking your location when in doubt. We can talk you through the set-up process too, so you can practise before your holiday. We also suggest downloading the what3words app, for quick and easy locating while offline.
Packing – your Walkers’ Pack will suggest the items to bring, including everything from clothing to first aid. Check what sort of weather to expect before choosing what to pack!
One of the frequent questions asked by clients is about walking poles. They’re a standard part of the hiking kit and are useful uphill and downhill, in poor weather and to steady yourself when crossing streams. However, they can be problematic when travelling by air, and you will need to pack them in your hold luggage – do check with your airline. If in doubt, plan to buy poles when you arrive.
The dull stuff – check in good time that your passport is valid and whether a visa or visa waiver is required – see your home country’s government website and don’t forget that you may need some months of validity on your passport after your return date. You’ll need some cash in the local currency (airport exchanges are not the cheapest way to do this!), travel insurance (and an EHIC/GHIC card if you are a UK citizen). Your mobile phone should be enabled for use in Europe, and it’s helpful to save the number of your Local Contact on your phone before you travel. And don’t forget to check the Covid regulations in the country you are visiting, as there may still be some entry requirements and rules for use of face masks.
See more useful links for UK citizens about travelling to the EU here.
But most of all, remember to take with you your sense of adventure, a mind that is open to new discoveries, and willingness to enjoy whatever happens along the way.