Common Travel Problems and how to Fix Them

travel problems and fies

I love to travel. And although I probably travel a little more than the average person, there are a million things that can go wrong at any time. Among the most common annoying travel problems are miscommunications, showing up a day late for your flight, and leaving your passport in the hotel safe. One thing is certain, no matter how much you travel, something is going to go wrong. Here are some common travel problems with fixes you may encounter during your travels.

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Avoid Common Travel Problems
Travel Fixes that Work

So I’ve traveled solo, with my kids, my girlfriends, my husband, and my mom. And travel problems occurred every time. I showed up at the airport 3 hours early, just on time and when it was boarding. And yes, I’ve shown up the day before and I’ve missed a few flights too. I’ve been delayed for an hour, delayed for a day, and canceled altogether. I’ve given up my seat for money because the plane was overbooked.

Unfortunately, I’ve been lost, unprepared and robbed– literally and figuratively. And although I generally fly economy, I have flown first class and standby. We’ve hired a tour guide, taken ubers, tubes, metros, buses, trains, bikes, boats, and rented cars and scooters. I’ve stayed in 5-star hotels, motels, private homes, slept in terminals, and even a couple hostels. Here are a few travel problems and how to fix them.

1. Electronics/ Chargers Left Behind

One of the most common mistakes is one I’ve unfortunately made a few times. After charging my phone all night, I left it plugged in behind my bed or beside the coffee table. It is so irritating because you need your phone. So I’ve had to buy a phone charger at the airport.

Number one travel hack– keep a phone charger in your carry-on bag just in case. I never take it out, so I never forget to bring one. You might want to keep a pair of earbuds in there as well. And don’t forget to ask the hotel, restaurant or lost and found– you might just get lucky.

2. Forgotten Documents

Don’t have a panic mode. So there are solutions to most travel problems that don’t end your travels. Simply make digital copies. Scan your IDs, medical and credit cards, and passports to help get them replaced. Unfortunately, you will probably experience some difficulty, especially if you are abroad. But having a backup (printed) copy of our passports helped us book a hotel after my purse was stolen in Spain.

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3. Black Bag Syndrome

You spend a lot of time searching for your luggage on the carousel at the end of your trip? The party favors or luggage tag is gone or hard to distinguish your luggage from the other passengers. I bought bright yellow luggage on a whim. I thought they were pretty and fit my bright and cheery disposition.

Who knew it would be one of the best travel-related purchases I would ever make. My bright yellow faux crocodile leather bags stand out. They are easy to identify amongst the sea of discernible black suitcases flowing on the luggage carousel. There is no mistaking mine for someone else’s. Don’t get me wrong. You don’t have to buy a bright yellow faux crocodile luggage set. Just don’t buy a black one.

4. Forgotten Toiletries

Even third world countries have toothbrushes. However, many hotels have a stash of toiletries for free or for sale. In fact, they have a lot of things, not just toothbrushes, toothpaste, and floss. Just ask them, most are more than willing to fork these things over. Also, even if you’re not a guest, you can still give it a try. Just walk in and ask. The worst they can say is no, after all.

5. Need a Shower

No time, no shower, no problem. Check into the resources located in the airports, bus stations, and local hostels. Or carry oversized, pre-moistened body wipes. Yuni‘s product line is both biodegradable and alcohol-free, so it won’t overdry skin. It is also individually wrapped, so it’s perfect for on-the-go cleansing.

6. Can’t Book Specific Seat

Sometimes I feel like a big dummy. Guess where I sat on this last trip to Italy? We both sat in the middle aisle all the way in the back of the plane. That’s because I forgot to check-in early. Checking in early the day of travel will help you get better even if you booked the cheap economy seats. Remember, there are 200 other people who did too. And you don’t want seats near the toilets.

7. Know Your Memberships

Do you have an auto policy in America? Will it cover you in Italy, or will you have to purchase that high rental insurance from the rental car agency? Make sure you understand your coverage and travel regulations. Being a Hertz Gold Member has its rewards. Knowing this saved us 85 Euros when we added my husband as an additional driver to the rental agreement in Sicily. Review your home, auto, rental, and travel policies before you leave so you don’t double up on coverage.

8. Extra Charges & Inconveniences

Remember I said complaining won’t help. Mishaps happen and sometimes, it’s exactly what will help fix some travel problems. However, how you complain can make all the difference. Make reasonable arguments that aren’t personal attacks or involve raised voices or threats. It helps if you can make the argument that they are more at fault than you. And offer to agree to a concession or accommodation in lieu of your inconvenience.

Final Thoughts

It’s okay to make mistakes because you cannot fail at travel. Here’s to all the travel problems I haven’t encountered yet that there isn’t a travel fix for them.

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