IF you’re going on vacation this summer, chances are you’ll run into some problems along the way.

During my last two trips abroad, I experienced both canceled and missed flights due to delays.


There are a few things I do before vacation to reduce the risk of any problemsCredit: Alamy
Long queues at the airport and canceled flights have become the norm for vacationers


Long queues at the airport and canceled flights have become the norm for vacationersCredit: AFP

However, there are a few ways to ensure that you’re prepared for anything that goes wrong by hedging your well-deserved vacation.

Here are four things I make sure to do before I travel to give my vacation the best chance of going smoothly — and so will you.

1. Make sure your passport is valid

One of the biggest mistakes travelers are making right now is passports, which have cost families thousands after being unable to board their flights.

There are two new rules that Britons must know.

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The first is that a passport can be no more than 10 years old – previous rules allowed Britons an extra nine months over their previous document.

An example of this, would be if my passport has a start date of July 15, 2012, but an expiration date of April 15, 2023, it will expire, as it has been 10 years since start day.

The second rule is that since leaving the EU, travelers must have at least three months left on their passports to visit countries in Europe such as Spain and Portugal.

If you go on holiday tomorrow, you’ll need the expiry date of at least October 2023.

2. Check airport advice before traveling

Depending on the airport you arrive at, different tips will be given on how early to arrive.

Most UK airports advise travelers to arrive three hours before check-in.

However, last-minute issues such as baggage delays also cause problems – some airports allow travelers to drop their suitcases the night before to avoid the early morning queues.

You should also check how you get to the airport, after some rail collisions – and consider checking into an airport hotel the night before.

3. Travel with only hand luggage

If you can avoid checking your luggage, it can also make your vacation much easier if you can stick to the liquid rules.

This means you can go straight to security if you have printed your boarding pass online.

It also means that, if you have any connections, it’s less likely to get lost somewhere between flights.

Just make sure you’re at the top of the queue for your flight if you do, as some airlines have limited space in overhead lockers.

Here are some of our top tips for traveling with just hand luggage.

4. Make sure your travel insurance covers you

While Britons have a GHIC or EHIC card, it’s important to have travel insurance, even if just visiting Europe.

Travel insurance is necessary for some issues beyond your control like getting stranded if your flight is canceled or your airline loses your luggage.

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Not only that, but any large medical bills won’t go away unless you have travel insurance, as long as the policy covers that.

Here are nine things travel insurance does NOT cover for you.

Follow these four rules and you should be able to handle any problems along the way


Follow these four rules and you should be able to handle any problems along the wayCredit: Alamy