Before you leave
- Have a valid passport and make at least two copies of it. Give one copy to someone you know who is not leaving with you and hide the other one inside your luggage. (Visit http://www.ppt.gc.ca/index.aspx to get the forms related to passport application.)
- Youths under 18 years old need a certified document signed by both parents allowing them to travel alone.
- Also, keep a copy of all your important documents: traveller’s checks (serial n.), credit cards and identification papers. Have with you the necessary phone numbers to cancel your credit cards in case of loss or theft.
- Airports establish a maximum global weight per person for luggage as well as a limit of two suitcases per person. Choose your luggage in function of your travels. Make a list of the clothes and things you would like to bring with you according to the activities that you’ll take part in and the climate of your destination. Then, eliminate what you feel is less important.
- On the plane, you will be allowed to carry a hand baggage fitting under your seat.
- Never store your valuables in your checked luggage. Keep them with you, in your hand baggage.
- Keep all medication, prescriptions, glasses and contact lenses with you.
- Keep your passport, wallet, identification papers and airplane ticket on you or in your hand baggage.
- When checking-in your luggage, you will receive a receipt. Do not lose track of it, it represents your sole proof of checking-in.
- Prepare a change of clothes in case your luggage is delayed.
- European countries have an electric current of 220 volts. Consequently, you will need adapters for appliances normally running on 120 volts current.
- Take out a travel insurance matching your needs. Outside Québec, health insurance only covers a part of the medical expenses. We recommend that you take out a complementary insurance offering a comprehensive coverage. Study Abroad VTE offers insurances on request.
- Do not forget your prescriptions if you have to bring medication. It will keep you clear of complications if your luggage should be searched by the customs officers.
- When travelling in Europe, it is recommended to have traveller’s checks in Euro currency and to carry some local money. Your traveller’s checks will be accepted in any formal bank.
- Do not forget to leave a copy of your serial numbers to someone before leaving. In case of theft, it will be easier to make a claim.
- You can also use your debit card at the identified machines bearing the Cirrus or Plus logos, depending on the origin of your card. On the other hand, be prepared to pay the exchange rate since your money will first be converted into American dollars before being converted into the local currency.
- If you prefer using your credit card, visit your bank to ask for a cash advance and get a personal identification number. This way, you will be able to withdraw money from the ATM at lesser fees than with your debit card.
- Think of different places where you could keep your money safe, this way you will avoid losing everything in case of theft. Use your imagination to create small pockets inside your clothes. Also keep your airplane tickets, your itinerary and their copies separately.
- Before you leave, find out the phone numbers and addresses of your country’s consulates in the regions that you plan to visit. Consular services represent your first recourse in case of natural disaster.
- It is recommended that you register at your country’s embassy, particularly if you are planning a long stay.
- An emergency transferred cost phone number is available (through Canada Direct services): 613 996-8885. Canada Direct covers a majority of countries and, with a local number, lets you reach directly a receptionist in Canada. This automatic international access service lets you call Canada or any other country while paying Canadian overseas long-distance fees instead of those of foreign countries.
The Study Abroad VTE team.