How to Go on a Two-Week Vacation When You’re Single and an Entrepreneur
As soon as you know you’re going, check with neighbor or friend or book a house-sitter. They’re out there and afford peace of mind. Ask around; doctors’ wives are a good resource. If you have children, you’ll need a sitter and power of attorney in case of illness.
Call the kennel, notify the PO and newspaper, schedule lawn care.
Get your VISA and/or passport. (Online: http://www.visanow.com). You can get the photo done at most drugstores.
Read State Department advisories http://travel.state.gov/travel_warnings.html#r . Did you know to bring a cell phone into Russia you must have a signed agreement from a Russian provider sent to Glavgossvyaznadzor?
Get immunizations you need.
Check on your overseas medical coverage. If you have AAA, you may already be covered. If not, a good policy will cover trip cancellation & interruption, baggage & trip delay, accident medical expenses, in-hospital indemnity, lost or stolen baggage, rental car collision damage waiver and rental car personal accident.
In a 3rd-world country, get medical evacuation insurance
– not just to hospital, but to home. An injury in a 3rd world country can cost you tens of thousands out-of-pocket – and/or your life.
Arrange for transportation to the airport.
Got a 10-hour international flight? How could you consider not having a good book with you? Order early! See the EQ Reading List: http://www.susandunn.cc/emotional_intelligence.htm .
A MONTH IN ADVANCE
Start informing your clients and key customers you’re leaving and make arrangements.
Fill in your assistant or VA on procedures, essential billing etc., autoresponders while you’re gone.
Familiarize yourself with http://www.mail2web.com or other remote access email where you can check from any computer, anywhere in the world. There’s Internet access even in Barbados. Give it a trial run; you must have the username and password from your original email server.
Start monitoring the weather at your destination and believe it. I’m going to Russia in July, leaving San Antonio, TX where it’s been 98, no rain in sight. In Moscow, it’s been 58 with 98% humidity. I’m forcing myself to pack hooded sweatsuits, sweaters and rain gear.
Read your travel manual for oddities. In Russia, a woman can’t enter certain churches without head-covering, nor can a man in shorts. Cruise land-tours can be booked in advance and fill early. Opera sell out, so do Broadway plays.
Make sure your affairs are in order. Send your next-of-kin your itinerary, and list of where your will, investments, important papers, safety deposit box key, name of accountants and attorneys, and power of attorney are.
You DO have a current will, don’t you? Especially important if you have children. If you don’t decide who will take care of them in your absence, the state will decide.
ONE WEEK BEFORE DEPARTURE
Take all the clothes to the cleaners that need to go and get the cottons and linens starched. One pair of heavily-starched blue jeans can look sharp for a week!
Go through your daily routine in the am and put the toiletries as you use them, into one large zip lock bag which you’ll later transfer to your suitcase. Then practice pretending that’s all you’ve got. That way you’ll get everything in there!
Lay out the outfit you’ll wear on the plane.
Choose one pair of goes-with-everything earrings and shoes, one for dress, one for day. A pair of black spandex slacks packs well, goes with 10 tops, looks right anywhere, and expands as you eat. Plan clothes with pockets.
Put medicines and things you’ll need on you in a separate bag to go into your purse or pockets – magnesium-calcium for leg willies on long plane rides, eye drops, spare glasses.
For a 3rd world country, review State Dept. suggestions for eating and drinking, and get your free sample of Immodium: http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art6213.asp. My pharmacist says chew it for quickest results.
Dump out your purse and get rid of anything you don’t need to lighten your load.
Line up the chargers for your toys, including digital camera and adapters . Put new batteries in the alarm clock.
When you leave, set the thermostat somewhere sensible – if it’s likely to freeze, don’t turn the heat off, just put it down low. Advise your friend to come and drip the faucets if there’s a freeze or turn the AC back up high before you get home. . Call your coach for a quick run through!
TWO DAYS BEFORE
If you have children make sure menus are planned and all groceries bought, activities listed, cash available, all emergency numbers, power of attorney signed, and rules gone over.
Lay out everything you plan to pack, take a look, and then pack it. If you’re a visual organizer like I am, that’s a MUST! Get cash or traveler’s checques.
Take the dog to the kennel.
Enjoy yourself, take a bubble bath, spend extra time with the kiddos.
Relax, you’ve covered all your bases, now have fun!
Susan Dunn, MA, Marketing Coach,
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