5 Uber Important Things You Need to Do Before Leaving for Spring Break

Cue the Insta-worthy swimsuit shots and Snapchat stories full of margaritas by pristine poolsides. Spring break is here! Well, almost. And while you may be spending the next few weeks leading up to the only break from spring semester duties dreaming about how you’re going to pose for a new batch of profile pics, you should also be thinking about the steps you need to take to ensure you even make it to your destination with as little anxiety as possible. Not to make spring break sound more stressful than it already it is, but one small detail can be the difference between heading to Miami for fun in the sun and heading to your room for your curfew. And we’re not just talking about planning your daily activities and looking for the best restaurants for a bite. Be sure to cross off these important details on your to-do list before you even so much as pack a suitcase!

1. Notify your bank that you will be traveling.

If you plan on carrying your credit or debit card, you MUST give your bank advance notice on where you will be traveling and when, so you won’t have issues making any purchases while you’re away. If you studied abroad in the past, you may recall having done this as well, so it’s the same deal. Otherwise, they’ll think someone in, say, Cancun got a hold of your credit card information and is using it to buy $100 worth of stuff.

2. Check to make sure your passport is still valid.

Simply put, you’re definitely not going anywhere with an expired passport, especially if you’re traveling outside of the U.S. You don’t want to make it all the way to the airport only to learn that you’ll have to go back home—talk about a major buzz kill! Check your passport expiration day ASAP to avoid any last minute surprises.

3. Know what the weather will be like in the destination you’re traveling to.

The weather can affect not only your outdoor plans for the week, but also your wardrobe and what shoes you bring along with you. If it’s going to be unseasonably chilly in your spring break destination, make sure you pack a light jacket and shoes that protect your feet. The last thing you want is to be dressed inappropriately and either freeze your ass off or burn a hole in your wallet buying clothes to make sure you aren’t shivering the whole time.​

4. Finalize transportation from the airport to your hotel.

You’d be surprised by how easy it is to overlook this itty, bitty detail! If you aren’t traveling somewhere with a volunteer group or such, chances are you have to take care of transportation details yourself. Some hotels offer a free shuttle, while others offer one that you have to pay for in advance, so make sure you completely understand the policies around that. Know how far in advance you must reserve your spot on the bus to avoid any confusions or mini heart attacks when you realize you must now choose between being stranded at the hotel for a day and paying $80+ for a taxi.

5. Re-confirm your hotel reservation.

How much would it suck to fly or drive all the way to your hotel only to hear, “sorry, miss, I’m afraid you’re not in our system”? If those words send chills down your spine, do everything in your power to make sure you never have to hear them. That means calling the hotel at least 24 hours before you leave home to make sure everything is all set and you aren’t missing anything.

We know, we know. It all sounds like so much to take care of. But if you’ve placed these things on your list and checked them off twice, then congrats, you’re officially ready to spring break like a pro!