Don’t Forget a Travel Wallet!
Congratulations! If you’ve decided that you want to enjoy a personal life changing adventure, it’s a great accomplishment and a journey in itself. Planning a RTW trip takes time, effort and planning, but luckily, it’s also a lot of fun. Going on the actual trip is the best part, but can be smoother sailing with the right planning.
Make sure you want to do this: Everyone dreams of winning the lottery and traveling around the world. Unless you’re that lucky and have the luxury of extended travel without a worry in the world, you’ll probably have to plan accordingly. Perhaps your circumstances have given you time off that amounts to a year or two so you can travel from Europe to Asia and everywhere in between. Why exactly do you want to travel the world is also a question you should ask yourself. Do you want to see sights, find yourself, work remotely while traveling or perhaps volunteer? There are many reasons to travel; make sure to find yours so you know that no matter what happens, this is what you want to do.
Think about places: This is obviously the fun part about planning a trip- where to go. Start by making a large bucket list of places you want to see. Warning: This may be a long and extravagant list. Now, make a sub-category list of places you have to see vs. places you want to see. Look at where the places are located and perhaps create a personal Google map of the places you want to visit. Consider creating sample routes of how you’ll get around abroad. This can get confusing when it comes to logistically booking flights, but it’s nice to have a skeleton idea. Perhaps you are the traveler who will simply book flights while you’re traveling; giving you the freedom to do as you wish.
RTW Ticket or Do-It-Yourself? While you’re thinking about places, you have to consider just how you’ll get yourself around. One popular option is the RTW Ticket; composed of your personal itinerary taking you from Point A to B to C and so on. This gives you discounts on flights with RTW ticket prices starting around $2,000 and up, depending on where and how you travel. The problem is that once you’ve locked in your cities, you have to determine how long you stay and you cannot change this. So, if you fall in love with the fine wines of Spain and want to embark on a tour that takes place later that week, but you have to leave for Germany, you may have trouble changing this. You may want to think about if you’re a do-it-yourself traveler who may want to have more personal wiggle room while traveling.
Save money and create a budget: An entire article can be written about how exactly to save for a RTW trip. The first question everyone has is: “Exactly how much should one save for a RTW trip?” There’s no right or wrong number that is set for everyone; it honestly depends on how you travel. Are you visiting big cities like London or Amsterdam, if so you may want to save more because they may be more expensive than places like Bangkok or Prague. Begin creating a budget on how much you’ll spend in a day and what exactly you will spend it on. Also create a pre-trip budget on things you will need to purchase for your trip, such as a backpack, toiletries or travel related items.
Be Healthy: Traveling can be therapeutic, but it is also stressful on the body, especially for a long period of time. Imagine traveling through climates quickly, exposing your body to different air qualities, or just catching the common cold in your hostel room. Get yourself a full physical before you leave to make sure you’re in good health. Consider investing in travel insurance to meet your needs abroad. Also, traveling with OTC medicine can be beneficial when you’re starting to feel sick. If you’re traveling to a country that requires specific vaccines, make sure to get these before you travel.
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