To prepare yourself for travel, consider physical, spiritual, legal, and cultural needs.
Buy the ticket, take the ride. – Hunter S. Thompson
Be prepared. – Boy Scouts’ Motto
See a travel clinic for recommended vaccinations and medications. Be sure you are “up to date” on Hepatitis and Tetanus shots. You may be advised to take an anti-malaria treatment and more. Locally Park Nicollet and Fairview have travel clinics.
We require Travel Insurance for each traveler. Research and purchase travel insurance (medical or emergency is what you’d need). Some websites:
- www.insuremytrip.com (offers more than 100 plans from 18 insurance providers, but also publishes useful trips about travel safety) Ann has used this each year.
- www.g1g.com (browse a selection of policies, from medical and trip insurance protection plans for individuals, to group insurance)
- www.squaremouth.com (offers online applications that help travelers “easily and instantly” compare all the major travel insurance plans)
- www.travelinsurancecenter.com (Offers Policy Picker, a tool that helps you compare travel insurance packages, and www.travelinsure.com (offers a variety of products from annual travel medical insurance to medical coverage for frequent trips)
The most expensive option is the default one you add on the airline’s website.
Reflect on what you would like from the week. What gifts to you have to bring? How will you make the trip more enjoyable for the girls and the other travelers? Are you open to try new activities, new food, new language, new culture?
Make sure you have your passport and it is current. E-mail to your trip leader emergency contact information. To get a passport visit http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/passports/new.html
Read fiction or non-fiction about the Dominican Republic, the Caribbean. Some suggestions include In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez (also a movie on DVD with Salma Hayek, I couldn’t find it streaming), Travel books with historical summaries, Sugar (HBO movie available on Netflix. It’s more about DR baseball than the girls, but it’s all related.) and Caribbean by James Michener (book on CD available at Hennepin County libraries).
Take a look at a map of the country.
Do a news search on the web about the Dominican Republic to find out recent events/hot topics.
Learn some Spanish, ideas at our What if you don’t know Spanish?