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Flights, accommodation and tours. These may be the holy trinity of travel preparation, but sorting out these parts of your vacation is only the beginning of the trip planning process. If you want to achieve a smooth, headache-free trip (and who doesn’t?), making sure you’re prepared for the weather is another essential task you should have on your list.

The weather is the single factor most likely to positively or negatively affect your trip, though it’s also one of the things most travelers take for granted, and people quite often find themselves caught off guard.

So make sure you’re fully prepared for the weather on your next trip. If you’re not sure where to start, utilize the following tips.

Travel Advice: How to Prepare For the Weather Overseas

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Check the Weather

Simple, straightforward advice. Though often the most simple advice is the advice we need the most.

Checking the weather forecast for your destination before you leave is essential to ensuring you are packing appropriate clothes. Don’t make assumptions as to what you believe the weather is going to be, I mean it’s always going to be warm in Australia during summer right? Always check.

There are always exceptions to weather patterns, especially if you’re traveling during transitional seasons. Let a weather forecast guide your packing strategy. Failure to check the weather can result in unprepared, unhappy and very soggy travelers.

Download a Free Weather App

Downloading a weather app before you leave is a great way to stay on top of the most recent forecasts. When it comes to a free weather app that is the most accurate and has the most features, WeatherBug is one of the best (available on Google Play and iOS).

The app makes sure that you are able to see current and future radar the weather for the week in any destination, and has other free features like lightning warnings, storm alerts, wind speed, and many more. It offers the most accurate forecast out there of other apps.

You can program your phone to receive alerts when certain things, like storms or rain, pop up in areas that you frequent. To avoid getting caught in inclement weather consider adding a few local areas to your app so that you’re alerted when any of those areas have changes in the weather that could impact your daily routine.

Webjet App Review

Pack Warm Clothes For Every Trip

Always pack warm clothes regardless of how hot your destination is, and never travel without a jacket. You may be surprised by how often you reach for it.

Destinations like the desert may be brutally warm during the day, however the cold is quite often equally as brutal come night. Australia is a great example of a destination where travelers arrive unprepared. Believing the stereotype that it’s warm year round, many tourists to Australia end up not being prepared for the cold.

Though if one of your connecting flights is cancelled and you find yourself stuck in the airport of a country you weren’t planning on being, or you do happen to get caught in an unexpected weather pattern, you’re going to wish you had packed warm clothes.

Pro Tip: Make sure you pack appropriate clothes for the weather you’re returning home to. You might be spending three weeks in Florida, but you’re going to freeze stepping off the plane on return to Canada dressed in shorts and a strapless shirt. And vice versa.

Travel With a Compact Umbrella

Traveling with a small compact umbrella is always a good idea. You know the saying “wait 5 minutes and the weather will change”. I’ve heard that said about almost every destination.

For popular destinations like New York City, the weather has a tendency to fluctuate from day-to-day, regardless of the season. Rainstorms come on without warning, and hotels often run out of umbrellas to lend guests.

Make a habit of checking the weather each morning, and regardless of the forecast, travel with your own compact umbrella.

Rain

Remember Skin and Eye Protection

Weather you’re traveling in hot or cold weather, make sure you’re prepared with skin and eye protection from the sun. Be aware that when traveling internationally you may be entering a country with UV Rays more fierce than you are used to at home. Act accordingly to protect yourself and your health.

When it comes to UV rays, the winter season is more dangerous than you may think, and you can easily get sunburnt in the snow. UV radiation is reflected from light surfaces on the ground, and because snow reflects up to 80 percent of the UV light from the sun, it means you’re are often being hit by the same rays twice.

Travel with waterproof sunscreens SPF 30 or higher (with broad-spectrum or multi-spectrum protection for both UVB and UVA rays) and wear sunglasses (or goggles) that offer 99 percent or greater UV protection.

Prepare Your Home For the Weather While Away

Something a lot of people overlook is preparing your home for the weather while you’re away. For instance if you’re expecting snow, pay someone to shovel your walks and driveway while you’re gone. Snow covered walks are a telltale sign to burglars that nobody’s home.

Also, set your thermostat to insure the temperature in your home doesn’t fall below freezing which could result in burst water pipes.

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Megan is an Australian Journalist who has been travelling and blogging since 2007, with the main aim of inspiring others to embark on their own worldwide adventure. Her husband Mike is an American travel photographer, and together they have made the world their home.

Committed to bringing you the best in adventure travel from all around the globe, there is no mountain too high, and no fete too extreme! They haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on their list.

Follow their journey on Facebook, TwitterYouTube, Pinterest and Instagram.

Photo credits: New York Storm by dommylive. Friends on the phone by Garry Knight.

    24 Comments

  1. Fantastic tips and a great reminder about sunscreen protection. I don’t always pack warm clothes. So there have been times when I’ve frozen my tush off.

    • Thanks Deb :) We try to push sun protection as much as possible as I’ve been burned badly in the past lol pun intended!! Not packing warm clothes is one of those mistakes I’ve found only happens the once :D!!

  2. Travelling with a compact umbrella is a great tip that I always forget to follow. I end up buying a new one each time. That’s why I have a cupboard full of compact umbrellas! Anyone need an umbrella?

    • Haha that’s too funny!! We got stuck in a thunderstorm in Venice a couple of months ago and all of a sudden the prices of umbrellas in shop fronts hiked up about 10 Euros!! Thought it was crazy but it’s obviously supply and demand!!!

  3. I always do the weather check before planning a trip. I have a default weather app in my phone which helps most of the time. Good one about getting warm clothes to deserts as it may get really cold by night.

    • Awesome Gokul! Sounds like you’re prepared! Happy travels :)

  4. Keeping track of weather and being prepared for it is such an important aspect of travel. Thank God we have technology to predict weather accurately now.

    • Technology is our friend!!

  5. Great tips here and so true about packing warm, even for warm places. I always get cold on flights- so there’s that reason for always packing at least one warm jacket.

    • Thanks Natasha :) I always seem to freeze to death on flights too – though I’m always grateful for the air conditioning, I think they aim to keep the cabins cold so there’s less chance of cold and flu spreading!!

      I always have my jacket with me in my carry on for just that reason.

  6. I love my compact umbrella and it goes everywhere with me! I think I have been trained that way because Melbourne’s weather is so changeable!

    • Ahhh good old Melbourne weather – if you don’t like the weather just wait 5 minutes for it to change right :D!

  7. A compact umbrella is a must! Especially a light weight one. Great post, thanks for sharing :)

    • Thanks Carmen, glad you enjoyed the post!

  8. Thats one big question, very helpful to be reminded of all these things with your tips, especially the last one! I live in a sunny place but I will now remind all my friends about that! thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for helping to spread the word Mar … hopefully we can make it so that no traveler is caught off guard by the weather again!

  9. I definitely prepare ahead of time and pack for every scenario. Sunglasses and a compact umbrella are always a must – you just never know :) Thanks for sharing!

    • Glad to hear that Lauren! I was always taught that “prior planning prevents piss poor performance” lol :)

  10. Great tips! I usually pack a poncho instead of an umbrella since its more compact. Or if I don’t expect rain I’ll just buy a cheap poncho at the mart if there’s a sudden storm

    • Thanks Mike! Poncho’s are just as good as an umbrella, I can see how it’s much more compact :)

  11. Excellent tips! You can never be too prepared, especially when you travel with kiddos. I especially agree with bringing something warm no matter where you travel. Once, when in Madrid, we had on our layers which included a rain jacket and we were SOO cold!! Even though the temps were mild, it was windy and damp. We all ended up with sweatshirts for souvenirs. LOL! The kids love the one my husband bought that says, “UniversiDAD” which, of course means university in Spanish, but my kids love the ‘dad’ part. Great memory, but from then on…into the suitcase went another layer just in case!!

    We use rain coats and ponchos instead of umbrellas. When in tight groups, holding the hands of kids, or walking down crowded streets we found umbrellas to be more hazardous than they were worth! We were always poking each other or trying not to poke someone else. Backpacks sometimes come with a built in cover you just pull out of a secret compartment.

    • Thanks Natalie! Agree that you can never be too prepared … at least you managed to turn your experience in Madrid into a fun memory … I have found that misadventures are usually the adventures we remember the most lol!

      Great point on raincoats, I can see how umbrellas would be especially impractical when you’re traveling with kids – and raincoats have the added bonus most of the time of added warmth too :)

      We usually put our raincoat on over our backpack when we have to – quite uncomfortable and a little stretched lol so we might look into backpacks with a built in cover. Thanks for the tip!

  12. These days weather is very unpredictable in any part of the world. Travelers just have to get prepared for unforeseen circumstances in any countries. Rainy days are very unwelcoming to business travelers especially with their busy schedules.

    • Absolutely Bella, it’s always wise to stay prepared regardless of where you are in the world, especially if you’re traveling for work and need to maintain a professional sharp look.

      Thanks for reading :)

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