Jump to content

Newbie to overseas travel
Where do I start??


  • Please log in to reply
20 replies to this topic

#1 Colleer

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:20 AM

In March I am going on an all expenses paid trip to Hong Kong for 5 days / 4 nights.

I have never been overseas before - HELP!  Where do I start??  It is a work related trip, but not with much work stuff eg 1 day of seminars, a couple of nights of theme or gala dinners, a day trip to Macau and a free day or two to do as I please.

The trouble is that I don't even know where to start.  My passport is sorted, work is booking tickets etc.

Where do I turn to to sort out finances whilst I am over there?  What is the best option in Hong Kong?  Do I get a Visa c/c, or would my Mastercard be accepted over there?  How much cash do I take on me - in Hong Kong $$'s or AUD?

Where do I get HK$ from?

Travel insurance is a must I know, so I will have to put that at the top of the list.

Even simple things like - how do I find out what the weather is generally like in March in Hong Kong?

We are flying Cathay Pacific, so I probably need to find out what size bag I can take.  Though I don't want to take to much, so I have plenty of room to brings stuff back.

ARGH!  I have NO idea where to start, but I know I definitely need to get started now......

Help!  Any advice greatly appreciated.

#2 Zazzy1

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:30 AM

I travel alot, i am recently back from a trip home to Ireland. I have been to HK also.

Regarding the weather just google what the weather is like in HK in March, travel websites will give a grid that indicates what the average temperatures are in that country at a certain time of year.

Regarding Travel insurance do make it a top priority sometimes your health insurance provider will do travel insurance(if you have helth insurance). if not again google is your friend.

You can get HK dollars in the bank before you go or wait until you get there and go to a Bureau to Change in the airport and change your ozzie dollars into HK dollars. When i went to HK i just used my usual debit card and took out a large amount of money to keep me going for a day or two. I left whatever i didn't need in the hotel safe and only took out what i thought i would need for the day. You can use your c/c though if you wish.

If you go onto the Cathay Pacific website you will be able to find out what there baggage limit is, it will also be on your tickets so maybe ask work what it says on your ticket?

Hope this helps original.gif

#3 IsolaBella

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:53 AM

Check if work have a travel insurance policy. DHs work have travel insurance provided for all DHs work trips (including hostage cover is he goes to west Africa this year).

We always use normal ATM cards and CC when traveling.



#4 2bundles

Posted 18 January 2013 - 03:10 PM

Www.tripadvisor.com

That will tell you about things to do, climate etc.

Hong Kong is lots of fun and is safe. Taxis are easy and cheap.

Macau is considered a different country, so don't forget your passport.

Any suitcase will be fine. If you can carry it it should be underweight lol!  

Take a small backpack onboard with some socks, a light cardigan etc. the plane can get cold.

Visa or mc are fine. Your eftpos card will also be fine to withdraw cash while you are there. You could get a few hundred $ from any currency exchange before you go or at the airport. Otherwise it is easy to get it when you arrive from an atm. Macau accepts HK currency.  

Have fun!

#5 Fairey

Posted 18 January 2013 - 03:28 PM

How exciting!
As said, check the cathay pacific site for luggage limits (probably around 20kg)
Travel insurance direct is quite good and its all done online (although if its a work trip your employer may be covering that. Worth finding out about it!)
Money - look up Australia post to see if they deal with H.K dollars. Aus post don't charge for money conversion, where as travelex at the airport usually give you a lower rate and charge fees. You could also order your currency from the travelex website and collect it at the airport (its a better rate that way) my pick would be aus post first though. Or you can just withdraw money as you need it in H.K.
Carry on is your friend if you're worried about bringing back lots of things!

Enjoy your trip - I'm sure it'll be fantastic!

#6 starsg

Posted 18 January 2013 - 04:25 PM


don't forget to notify your bank that you'll be going overseas if you're planning to use your c/c, sometimes if they see overseas transactions they will suspect fraud and suspend your card, so definitely give them a call before you go original.gif

#7 PrincessPeach

Posted 18 January 2013 - 04:31 PM

Just a heads up, we flew cathay in April 2011 & their seats are very uncomfortable - other than that i have no complaints about them, the meals were nice.

HK is great. It's also easy to access funds from ATM's over there, but if you want to take some cash i found the best exchange rates were with the banks.

March in Hong Kong will be warm (we were there in April), however take a light jacket/cardigan as the air-conditioning in places is freezing.


Also try & buy an octopus card - it will make taking public transport very easy & you get a full refund on whatever you don't spend when you leave.

I highly recomend a visit to HK Disney though - it's a full day, but DH & I loved it.

#8 Colleer

Posted 19 January 2013 - 09:49 AM

Thanks so much for all your help and advice, it has given me a lot more confidence and calmed my nerves somewhat.

I had no idea you could just use your regular ATM card overseas - how easy does that make things??!!  I think I will get an amount of HK $ to have on me in  cash when I go over, and get money out of the ATM when I am over there. Phew - one less thing to panic about  original.gif   Though I will definitely contact the bank to tell them I am heading overseas so they don't think my activity is suspicious.  I am going to hop on the Aus Post website now and check out the exchange rate there.

I do have to get the travel insurance myself,  though work has given us a link to the travel agent doing all their bookings etc if we wish to buy the insurance through them.  Will get onto that ASAP.

I am trying to plan my outfits down to a fine art before I go so I am  not taking too much.  I have a tendency to throw everything in and decide on the day what to wear, but then that works when you don't have a kg luggage limit!

As for carry on bags - what can you usually on board?  I have my hand bag which is a decent size and will hold my ipad, kobo, wallet, phone and a multitude of other necessities (!) can I also take a small backpack ?  Do I have to put my handbag in the luggage compartment above my head when we fly or can I keep it at my feet?  Just curious as I tend to swap between my ipad and kobo quite a bit and didn't want to be forever getting my bag down.  I thought also if I can take a small backpack or something on board with me that will give me a bit of extra luggage room on the way back as well.

You can't half tell I am a newbie can you??!!

#9 IsolaBella

Posted 19 January 2013 - 09:57 AM

Bags can go under the seat in front. The only time you have to put bags in overhead lockers is for take off and landing if you have a bulk head or exit row without a ow of seats in front of you.

Handbag plus backpack or wheelie bag are fine. How about not taking extra hand luggage and buy bag only if needed? We usually have our suitcases as ones which can expand (note luggage limits though).

1cover is good for travel insurance. I have found any insurance underwritten by Allianz great. We have had to claim medical expenses a few times in past travels.



#10 Colleer

Posted 19 January 2013 - 10:15 AM

Oooh I like the idea of buying a bag over there is I need it.  I can just hear my DH saying "Another bag??? Noooooooo!!"

Great idea Isolabella  wink.gif

It may seem silly me asking all these really basic mundane questions, but it makes me a bit less nervous which is good!

#11 starsg

Posted 19 January 2013 - 10:23 AM


Another quick tip re the bank card-when you call the bank, check how much they charge to withdraw funds overseas, some banks charge a percentage of the sum withdrawn or a flat fee but they're generally outrageous-think $10-15 per transaction. Cash passport is a good way around that as you can pre pay it, or ask the bank what options they have for travel original.gif.

Have fun!

#12 elmo_mum

Posted 19 January 2013 - 10:33 AM

if you go to the post office, or most banks
you can get a debit/visa card pre loaded with foreign currency

#13 little lion

Posted 19 January 2013 - 10:38 AM

If your MasterCard doesn't have a PIN on it, make sure you organise one at your bank before you leave.

HK is a fantastic place, easy to get around for tourists. Enjoy!

#14 secret~sammy

Posted 19 January 2013 - 11:29 AM

QUOTE
Another quick tip re the bank card-when you call the bank, check how much they charge to withdraw funds overseas, some banks charge a percentage of the sum withdrawn or a flat fee but they're generally outrageous-think $10-15 per transaction. Cash passport is a good way around that as you can pre pay it, or ask the bank what options they have for travel .


While this is 100% true, for a 5 day trip *I* would only need to go to an ATM once or twice. Before you spend hours running around town trying to find the absolute best exchange rate and fee combo just make sure it's worth your time and effort to do so. As much as I hate the $10 international ATM fee in the grand scale of things it's not worth my time to do any better to save myself less than I'm likely to spend on a coffee and sandwich at the airport.

#15 Mellie Kate

Posted 19 January 2013 - 12:19 PM

check out this page Baggage for baggage allowance

and this one carry on for carry on

and this place for exchanging money to HK,if you have one of these near you i total recommend it,they have the best rates and no fees travel money oz

Edited by Mellie Kate, 19 January 2013 - 12:21 PM.


#16 SeaPrincess

Posted 19 January 2013 - 12:31 PM

My friend who works in travel recommends Covermore, but in your case, I would probably go with the one your company has provided. Will they reimburse the cost?

Mastercard should be fine for purchases, but don't withdraw cash from it.  If you withdraw cash from your Aust bank account, take out larger sums to avoid the costs, even if you then put it in the hotel safe - most big hotels have small safes in the rooms, so you program your own code and can leave valuables, passport, etc locked away.  I usually get minimal currency to take with me, then withdraw the maximum amount I can at the first ATM I see, but use my credit card whenever possible.

I always put my hand luggage under the seat in front.  Remember that there are limits on how much liquid you can take in the cabin, and it has to be packaged in a clear zip-lock bag to go through customs.  I think the maximum size is 150ml, and liquids includes things like toothpaste, deodorant and hand cream.


#17 Colleer

Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:58 AM

I think I might even need to print this thread out as I keep coming back to look at it  happy.gif

QUOTE
I think the maximum size is 150ml, and liquids includes things like toothpaste, deodorant and hand cream.


Silly question no:782 - does that mean I can't take a bottle of water on the plane with me?  I tend to always have a bottle of water in my handbag.  Not important in the scheme of things - just pondering I guess.

My anxiety / excitement level must be pretty high as last night I dreamt that I had a car crash 2 weeks before my trip and broke both my legs and couldn't go!

#18 PrincessPeach

Posted 21 January 2013 - 09:08 AM

QUOTE (Tyrantasaurus @ 21/01/2013, 08:58 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think I might even need to print this thread out as I keep coming back to look at it  happy.gif



Silly question no:782 - does that mean I can't take a bottle of water on the plane with me?  I tend to always have a bottle of water in my handbag.  Not important in the scheme of things - just pondering I guess.

My anxiety / excitement level must be pretty high as last night I dreamt that I had a car crash 2 weeks before my trip and broke both my legs and couldn't go!


Correct.

Also I bought a bottle of water in HK airport after going through customs & it was taken from me at the gate. I then had to bug the flight attendants all the trip home for a glass of water every so often - so just be careful about that one.

#19 SeaPrincess

Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:35 PM

QUOTE (PrincessPeach @ 21/01/2013, 07:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Correct.

Also I bought a bottle of water in HK airport after going through customs & it was taken from me at the gate. I then had to bug the flight attendants all the trip home for a glass of water every so often - so just be careful about that one.

We had the same in Singapore. I just made sure that every time they came past and offered water on the plane, I got a bottle (or 5, since we were 5), even if the last one wasn't empty.

#20 Bart.

Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:45 PM

You can re-fill your water bottle on the other side of customs on your way in.  Just be sure it's empty when they're checking.

I travel with a travel wallet.  It's a large zip wallet big enough to lay my tickets and customs forms flat in, along with some cash, only one card and passport.  It's awesome having it all in one place.  My day-to-day wallet goes into luggage and I use it once I've landed. My travel wallet is bright red, very funky and has a strap which goes over my wrist so it's always on me.

This is a travel wallet along with some really great advice:

http://www.gobankingrates.com/banking/what...hile-traveling/

The thing that hasn't been mentioned is a warning.  Once you start travelling internationally, it's really hard to stop.  The travel bug bites very hard and there is no antidote.   happy.gif

(Edited to fix image)

Edited by Bart., 21 January 2013 - 08:49 PM.


#21 jezebeljoygirl

Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:52 PM

bahaha at the warning above. SO true!!

Of course some nerves are totally normal. But you'll work it all out, and Hong Kong is easy and awesome.


You will have a great time. I'm jealous!!




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Tot meets his heroes, falls apart with excitement

Two-year-old Quincy finished his potty training last week, and as part of his reward he was able to meet his idols.

Beautiful in our eyes: Georgia's story

I will never deny the fact that grief has a place when you give birth to a child who brings a set of circumstances very different to what you imagined. Because for nine months, I thought I knew my Georgie.

'It's been phenomenal': widower dad of quads thankful for support

There was nothing Erica and Carlos wanted more than a baby.

Vin Diesel names daughter after actor Paul Walker

The actor said there was "no other person" he was thinking about when he chose the name.

How midwives can help women who experience domestic violence

More than half of women who live with abusive partners experience violence during pregnancy.

Mum describes giving birth during Cyclone Pam

A new mother was told she must flee Port Vila hospital with her baby as Cyclone Pam bore down.

6 signs you're done having babies

There were a few signs I'm never going back to the land of maternity jeans, breast pumps and bassinets.

Marta Dusseldorp reveals breastfeeding cost her an acting job

Australian actress Marta Dusseldorp has revealed she was forced to withdraw from a Sydney Theatre Company production because a director did not approve of her breast feeding.

Female celebs (or their babies) with traditionally male names

Looking for a name that's a little bit different for a girl? Turn to names that have been traditionally used for males, as these celebs (or their parents) did.

'If you're anti-immunisation ... take a look at this picture of my son'

Greg Hughes is "an absolute shell of a man" as he and his wife Catherine struggle to come to terms with the loss of their newborn son Riley to whooping cough.

How an extrovert can raise an introvert

Introverts are often misunderstood as shy, and sometimes even rude. A timid child can be difficult to build rapport with, but it's important we nurture their sensitive natures.

Sheryl Sandberg's advice

'Choreplay': Help out at home to get more sex, Sandberg tells men

Forget foreplay. The new and improved route to intercourse is "choreplay" - it's good for your spouse, good for your house, and comes with the imprimatur of feminist du jour Sheryl Sandberg.

How to play with your baby

The first time your child learns a new skill at playtime is very exciting - for both you and your baby! Play is important to your child's development for a variety of reasons - here are some simple ideas for you to try at home.

I'm a single mother by choice

For me, being the best mother I can be means being a mum alone, at least for now. Thinking of my friends with inadequate partners, I wonder why more people don’t choose single motherhood.

Awkward wedding photos

Weird poses, surprise photobombs, bizarre editing: these are the wedding photos that should have never seen the light of day.

Four-week-old baby Riley Hughes dies of whooping cough

The mother of a four-week-old Perth baby who died after contracting whooping cough says her family has been left devastated by the loss of her "gorgeous, sweet" son.

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, we are giving away five DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Oh boy! Video shows family's reaction to baby surprise

Little Peyton Williams thought she was getting a baby sister named Charlee. But the two-year-old has had to settle for a doll dressed in pink after her baby "sister" turned out to be a boy.

How to help build up your baby's immune system

We all know that having a strong immune system is the best way to stay healthy – but what can we do to help it along?

'Nick, you need to call an ambulance': home birth mum's tragic death

A Melbourne mum who died after the home birth of her baby pleaded with her husband to call an ambulance because she felt she was going to die, the Victorian Coroners Court has heard.

When dads believe their baby doesn't 'like' them

Q: My two-month-old baby doesn't like me. He's perfectly content with my wife, but when I try to hold him, he gets upset and cries. I've backed off a little, thinking that he just needs a little time to get used to me, but that doesn't seem to be working. I'm starting to think I'm just not a very good dad. Is it too late for me to build a relationship with my baby?

When was the last time a stranger praised your parenting?

Wouldn’t it be great to get some nice feedback every now and then? After all, everyone likes to hear positive praise, particularly when it comes to parenting.

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

15 names on the verge of extinction

If you're looking to revive an older name, or don’t want anything near the top 1000 list, check out these rare monikers for your unique baby.

5 characteristics of great dads

It’s great to see a generation of dads who are more actively involved with caring, nurturing and loving their kids.

Why doesn't Australia have more breast milk banks?

When there’s no question that milk banks are important, why don’t we have more of them in Australia?

Carrie Bickmore announces birth of daughter

Television personality Carrie Bickmore has given birth to her second child.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Sign up to our 30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

Sign up to receive 30 amazing tips and ideas for play with baby during the month of April and submit a picture or tip on our social wall for a chance to win an amazing Fisher-Price prize pack.

Man faces jail after giving woman abortion pill smoothie

A Norwegian man is facing jail after putting abortion pills in his ex-girlfriend's smoothie, causing her to have a miscarriage.

'He's a blessing': family of baby born without eyes

Jordy Jackson was born without eyes. He has anophthalmia, which affects one in every 100,000 babies born.

Super fit model Sarah Stage defends her pregnancy body

Model Sarah Stage has defended her pregnancy body after critics claimed her slim figure at eight-and-a-half months pregnant wasn't "normal".

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom and Peppa Pig prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, Essential Baby and Entertainment One are giving away five bumper DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Why I post breastfeeding photos online

I love to take pictures of my children. In some of the pictures, my younger son is nursing.

The day I broke my baby

There are things I wish I didn't know. I wish I didn't know that companies make tiny braces, small enough to hold necks no bigger than a wrist.

The place just for dads of multiples

When a couple discovers they're expecting multiples, the dad can sometimes be almost forgotten in all the excitement and preparation. But one group offers a space just for dads of twins and higher-order multiples.

Brave mum calls for domestic violence law reform

A brave mum of two has shared details of the harrowing attacks she suffered at the hands of her partner in a bid to help other victims of domestic violence.

Why I had the new test for Down syndrome

Early last year I turned 35, and having just found out I was pregnant, I opted to have the new test for Down syndrome.

Geeky baby gear

If your family is more into Star Wars, gaming and the periodic table than most, you might want to check out these geek-chic baby items.

2015: the year of the sheep

According to the Chinese zodiac, babies born in the year of the sheep are creative and enjoy spending quiet time with their own thoughts.

Breakthrough genetic testing now available in Australia

Pregnant women will for the first time have access to locally analysed, accurate, non-invasive pre-natal genetic testing when the first Australian clinic to offer the services opens its doors next week.

Grandbabies: the babies born looking old

Not a day under 65 and a lifetime of struggle! That's the look of these newborns, who look adorably older than their real age. Social networking site Reddit recently featured user submissions of adorable grandbabies, here are our favourites.

Family kicked off flight after toddler seatbelt drama

An entire family was kicked off a Cathay Pacific flight when a misbehaving toddler refused to put his seatbelt on.

Stolen baby found after 17 years

A baby stolen from her mother's arms shortly after birth has been found through an astonishing coincidence.

53 creative pregnancy announcements

Announcing that you're expecting can be a time to express your creativity, sense of humour and imagination. Check out how other parents and parents-to-be have broken the news to friends and family.

IKEA hacks for the nursery and kids' rooms

Are you one of those that know the whole IKEA catalogue by heart? Love their stuff but want to personalise it? Here's some inspiration to help you realise the potential of IKEA furniture and fittings.

36 baby names inspired by food and drinks

A French court may have ruled out Nutella as a baby name, but that doesn't have to stop you from taking inspiration from the supermarket (or bottle shop). See what parents in the US have chosen for their delicious little ones.

Clever breastfeeding products

Check out this range of products designed to help make your breastfeeding journey more enjoyable, manageable and convenient.

 

Sign up now!

30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

Receive a daily email from Essential Baby during April with great play tips and ideas, then submit your baby at play photos to our Playwall, Instagram or Twitter for your chance to win.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.