While planning a big trip your brain goes in to overload. There are copious amounts to do. I have put together a timeline of a few essential pre-travel tips and things to think about before you go. Let’s prevent your from head exploding!
Between 12 & 6 Months to go…
- Where do you want to go? You don’t have to set anything in stone, but a rough idea about where in the world you would like to visit would be good. Do you fancy relaxing in an Asian paradise? Or maybe exploring what South America has to offer? Or how about a city sightseeing Eurotrip? The world is your oyster!
- Who do you want to travel with? This is important. You don’t want to choose a travel companion that will drive you insane and make you want to launch yourself off the edge of a cliff. Whether you choose to go with a boyfriend or girlfriend, a group or a mate, make sure you can trust them and you will enjoy travelling with them. There is always the solo travel option too. You will always meet new people and make friends along the way.
- Save, Save, Save. Saving is really boring. But it has got to be done. Whenever you’re a bit low about the lack of spending money you have, just think what all your hard work is going towards, a fantastic trip that will be full of laughs and new experiences. It will be worth it in the end. When you go out, drink less, save your money and save your liver at the same time! When you go shopping and want to buy those beautiful sparkly stilettos, just think to yourself… ‘Do I really need these? Can I take them travelling?’. While saving money, it helps if you can live at home and car share, I know sometimes this isn’t possible, but just think of different ways to economise. Work out your finances and set a travel fund target that you can hit. Put aside a certain amount a month, but don’t leave yourself too broke! Sorted.
- Book your flights! Then there is no backing out! Flights are cheaper when you book them in advance and once you have an outbound flight booked it is all suddenly real! Plus, you have time to replenish your money.
- Create a blog. Blogging is the best way of keeping your loved ones up to date with your travels and a way of keeping your very own personal diary of your adventures. You can make it absolutely perfect before you go away and start writing about your previous travel experiences, interviewing other travel bloggers and sharing tips. It’s great fun, I would recommend it.
Between 6 & 1 Month to go…
- Get organised. Write lists. Then you will feel less stressed about everything and you will not forget to do anything. Think about what you need to buy, do and sort out before you go away. Do it the old school way, where you get a pen and notepad and write it down! Smartphones are good but you could easily delete it by mistake!
- Spend some money. You need to start buying boring things like visas, travel immunisations and insurance. These can be expensive, but are essential.
- Research. Read up on your chosen destinations. Make sure you know about the culture, language, sites and local hotspots. Travel books and traveller blogs are my favourite ways of researching.
- Sort your life out. Hand in your notice at work, sort out your bank, check your passport, make sure visas are approved, sell things that you don’t need to get a bit of spare cash! Try a trial round of packing your backpack, it gives you a good insight in to how much stuff you can take! Etc Etc. You get what I mean.
1 Week to go…
- Time to get excited! Counting down the days! Make sure everything is sorted and start to pack. Have a think about what you want to get out of your trip. Make sure you have a huge leaving party with all your family and friends, make sure you leave the country on a high! Remember to get those skype contacts and give your blog web address out to keep in touch! Have a fabulous time!