Flying to the United States of America is always a dream for millions around the world. This is because the USA is perceived as a land of opportunities given its advanced economy, power, and technology. Despite high gun violence and their strong attitude against blacks, people still want to go there.
Here are a few things you should consider before traveling:
Entry requirements: Depending on your country of origin, you may need to apply for a visa or an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) before entering the United States. Make sure to check the entry requirements for your specific situation well in advance of your travel dates. For Kenyans, getting a Visa into the USA is one of the most difficult things in the world.
Currency: The United States uses the United States Dollar (USD) as its currency. It is advisable to exchange your currency before arriving in the United States or withdraw cash from an ATM once you arrive. Ironically, in Kenya, the US Embassy accepts local currency only, and in cash.
Time zones: The United States spans several time zones, so it’s important to take note of the time difference between your home country and your travel destination.
Transportation: Depending on where you are traveling, public transportation may be limited, so it is recommended to rent a car or plan for private transportation options.
Tipping: In the United States, it is customary to tip service industry workers such as waiters, bartenders, and hairdressers. It is typically expected to leave a 15-20% tip on the total bill.
Weather: The weather in the United States varies greatly depending on the region and time of year. It’s important to research the weather forecast for your destination and pack accordingly.
Healthcare: Healthcare in the United States can be expensive, so it is recommended to purchase travel insurance that includes medical coverage.
Culture: The United States is a culturally diverse country, and customs and social norms can vary depending on the region. It’s important to be aware of cultural differences and to be respectful of local customs and traditions.
Security: The United States has strict security measures in place at airports and other public places. Make sure to review the Transportation Security Administration’s guidelines on prohibited items before packing for your trip.
Emergencies: In case of emergencies, dial 911, the United States emergency phone number, for immediate assistance.