Before you go
To travel abroad you must hold a full 10-year passport, even if it’s for a day trip. Apply in good time to the HM Passport Office – for information call 0300 222 0000 or visit the government's website about passport information. Ensure your passport is valid for the duration of your trip. Some countries insist that it must be valid for a minimum period (usually six months) beyond the date of entry to the country.
Check if you need a visa to enter the country you’re visiting. For all visa enquiries, you should contact the Consulate or Embassy of that country.
Your travel insurance
After booking a holiday or organising your trip, you should take out travel insurance to cover unforeseen events. Saga Travel Insurance includes many features and benefits such as cover for most pre-existing medical conditions as well as up to £10,000 cancellation cover. This protects you against cancelled flights and events such as the airline going out of business, strikes and severe weather.
We also cover you for lost luggage and for alternative accommodation if you’re stranded abroad. You should also ensure that your travel insurance covers specific activities you have planned, such as winter sports. Saga Travel Insurance offers additional cover for these activities in addition to your policy with us.
Make copies of important documents, especially passports. It’s worth keeping one set with you and leaving a second set with a friend, neighbour or relative back home. Make a note of emergency contact details for your travel insurer, as well as your bank and credit card providers and take them with you. Remember to check flight times on your ticket as minor flight changes may have occurred since you booked.
If you have a mobile phone, contact your network provider to ensure that the handset has international roaming and can be used in any country you’re visiting. Check international call charges and, if your phone is ‘Pay as you go’, ensure you have enough credit. When calling the UK from abroad, dial 00 (International Access Code), 44 (UK Country Code) then the person’s number, remembering to omit the initial ‘0’ from the Area Code.
Arrange transport to and from the airport, or car parking. If a friend or relative is picking you up, give them your flight number, details and booking reference number. If you need assistance at the airport, contact your tour operator or airline and they can make the necessary arrangements. Also, be aware that airlines now ask you to provide either a disabled badge or a doctor’s certificate confirming you need assistance.
Visit the Foreign Office website for a range of useful pre-travel planning tips, as well as country-specific advice. It’s also worth knowing that Saga can deliver more than 60 foreign currencies, as well as travellers cheques, to your door. Order online on Saga Travel Money website or call 0800 904 7236 for more details.
Take steps to secure your home whilst you are away
- Keep valuable items out of sight and avoid advertising your absence while away.
- Cancel your usual deliveries, such as milk and newspapers.
- If possible, ask a neighbour to remove any free newspapers/flyers that may be sticking out of your letterbox.
- If going away for a long period, it might be worth making arrangements to have someone take care of your garden. Overgrown lawns, beds and borders indicate that a house has been left unoccupied.
- Set any timers on lights, so that they go on and off at times that create the illusion you are home.
- Ask someone you trust to keep an eye on your home while you’re away.
- Try to arrange for post to be collected and ask for your curtains to be drawn at night – to generally make the place look lived in.
- If you’re planning to be away for more than 30 days, check that your home insurance allows you to leave your property unoccupied for that amount of time without the policy becoming invalid. Saga Home Insurance includes full protection when your home is unoccupied for up to 60 days in a row.
Going on holiday soon?
Visit the Saga Trip Planner for lots of useful travel information such as packing lists, local attractions and baggage restrictions.
You can also save money on holiday essentials such as airport parking, hotels and lounges with our exclusive offers - only for Saga Customers.