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Your out of office is on, ASOS has finally answered your bikini dreams and you’re itching to get to the airport.

Before you go anywhere, however, it’s worth taking a few precautions – even if they feel boring and, well, a little bit pointless. We promise they’re not.

Here are six ways to stop your dream vacay turning into a holiday from hell.

1 – Have backup copies of everything

Your passport, your flight booking… everything. We’re not saying you need to carry actual printed copies around with you, but having a digital copy of your travel insurance policy, your passport and any other important information will prevent a nightmare situation if anything bad should happen.

2 – Know the locals scams 

No destination – including your home town – is without scams or crime, so make sure you’re aware of any local ones. You don’t need to worry, but it’s good to be aware. Google your holiday destination and “local scams” or something similar to get clued up before you go so you won’t become a target.

3 – Plan your route 

There’s nothing worse than arriving in a new country, tired and a little confused – and not being able to connect to the airport WiFi. You don’t need to plan your entire trip in advance, but planning your route to your hotel before jetting off can cause a lot of wasted time – and worry – when you land.

4 – Learn the lingo

You don’t need to be able to hold a conversation but a few words of the local language will go a long way. Phrases such as hello, thank you and have a good day will be appreciated by the locals wherever you are.

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5 – Look after your health 

Going on holiday can be like getting through a health hazard obstacle course. From keeping a check on how much you drink to watching exactly what you drink (especially in countries where you can’t drink the tap water!), make sure you’re clued up on the biggest health risks while you’re away.

If anything does go wrong, holiday sickness claims can help get your money back – but they won’t get your holiday back.

6 – Trust your instincts 

When in doubt, let your instincts guide. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s probably for a good reason – even if that reason isn’t immediately obvious. It’s always better to walk away from an uncomfortable situation than take any risks, whether you’re at home or abroad.