Yes, we’re on the road again, and it’s been way too long. We’re on our way to Jamaica for 10 days, meeting my brother and his wife for a very long overdue vacation. I’m so darn excited I can hardly stand it.
Jamaica and Couples Swept Away
We’re staying at an all-inclusive resort in Negril, called “Couples Swept Away” and it looks like it’s going to be a great place to stay with a lot of dining and included activities. We usually try to do at least one trip each year with my brother and his wife because we all get along so well and like to do the same types of activities.
So far we only have two booked activities, a nice long day of fishing with “Stanley’s Deep Sea Fishing“. Last time I went fishing I was lucky enough to hook a Dorado. The second activity is a nice long trip on a river tubing safari through “Chukka Caribbean Adventures“. And, of course, we’re really looking forward to the food. Thom and I both love exploring local cuisine and are very excited for that. They provide free scuba diving lessons and will take you out for scuba dives, so I may have to give that a try. And of course snorkeling. Last time we went snorkeling we were in the Grand Cayman and we used “full face snorkel masks” and they were wonderful. You’ll find a link for those at the bottom of the page.
I’d forgotten about how much there is to do to get ready for an international trip!
- Passports and making sure you have at least six months left on your passport or many countries won’t let you in.
- Flight arrangements and flying from Seattle to Jamaica means we go through Atlanta and it ends up being an overnight flight, so we leave one day and arrive the next day.
- Airport parking and using Groupon to get a “deal” on extended parking rates.
- Having our mail held through USPS and then delivered when we get home, if you don’t know about this service, you should check it out. They will hold your mail for as along as your gone and they deliver it to you when you get back.
- The dogs and making sure our dog sitter is available to take care of the dogs and that they have enough supplies (food, toys, treats) to make it a pleasurable experience for the dogs. We’re lucky we have a neighbor who comes in four times a day and spends time playing with them.
- Notifying banks and credit card companies that you will be using your cards in another country.
- Notifying your cell phone carrier that you’re out of the country and signing up for their temporary international plan.
- Notifying the neighbors so they know you’re gone and can notify you of anything that happens at home.
- Making sure you have the appropriate VISA to visit the country you’re going to – lucky for us Jamaica doesn’t require a VISA. I find this site is very helpful in determining if a VISA is needed. Passport Index
- Making sure you have the appropriate vaccinations for the country you’re visiting and WebMD is a good site to check for that.
- Check with the State Department for any travel advisories for the country you will be visiting and know how to contact them in case of an emergency or (heaven forbid) you get arrested for some reason
- Make copies of your passport and ID to take with you when you’re outside of your resort/hotel so you can lock your originals in the safe.
And, we’re off!
And, we’re so excited, this is a very badly needed vacation after dealing with some challenging health issues for a family member. Stay tuned, we’ll be posting pics and stories when we have some down time.
Stay safe and keep making those memories!