1. Don’t pack more than you need.
We have all heard this before, but it is definitely the truth. I made sure that I packed an extra for almost everything in my suit case. From extra socks, shoes, to even extra scarves, I had a lot of unnecessary things in my suitcase. Although in some cases they were useful, most of the time these things sat untouched in my bag. I am always someone who likes to be prepared, but in this case I didn’t need to be that cautious. Since I had so much extra luggage, I was very limited to what I could bring back with me to America. We all know that suitcases have a certain weight limit that they can not go over, and you see, mine was definitely on the edge of me having to pay extra cash. I was definitely holding in my breath as I weighed my suitcase at the airport, but thankfully I was in the clear.
2. Check the weather before you leave.
This is something I forgot to do on my own before I left, and I regretted it once I arrived in N. Ireland. Although your iPhone's weather app may not be precise all the time, it still helps to get an idea of what it will be like over there. You see, I was told by my fellow N. Ireland travelers that it would be in the high 50's when really it was in the high 30's. Again, make sure you check the weather so that it doesn't ruin part of your trip! Believe me, freezing cold weather in nothing but a hoodie can make what's supposed to be a great, memorable part of your trip, something you wish you could forget.
3. Always have extra cash in both currencies.
I know I stated earlier not to pack extra things, well cash is an exception in this case. On my trip, I made sure that I had enough pounds on me for Northern Ireland, but never thought of having extra American cash on me. I ended up using most of my cash in the airport , not thinking that I might need cash once again on the way home. Overall, if you are going abroad or not, carry extra cash because if you don't have enough for the way home you just might have to eat the dreaded airplane food, which will definitely haunt you.
4. Have patience getting back to the US.
Like you all know, I have never been abroad before so as I went through security and customs I started to get very frustrated. I learned that it is a lot harder to enter my own country than it is to leave it. Overall, I was exhausted and just wanted on the plane, so once I saw the lines and the procedures I had to go through my heart immediately sank. Make sure all of you going abroad are prepared for this, just stay positive and you should do just fine! :)