WHERE you want to visit; How will you FINANCE your trip; What do you need to PACK; What ACTIVITIES can you enjoy there..; WHEN is the best time to travel there...; We’ve got it all broken it down for you..
CHOOSING A DESTINATION
The world is quite large and choosing a new place to visit could be a challenge. Amongst many other considerations, you should think deeply and consider asking questions related to:
Purpose – Why are you traveling anyway? Sometimes we travel because we need an escape and desire rest and relaxation. We might want to embark on an experience hoping to broaden our experience and our mindsets. Knowing why you’re traveling will make all the difference in the destination and the journey itself.
Solo Travel – Will you be traveling alone to a foreign destination? This can be scary for many but surely has its perks. Certainly, there are some countries where for example, if you are a female traveling alone, you may be a more obvious target. Still, you will find that traveling alone increases your confidence and communication skills. It is also more likely that more people will approach you as most are likely to approach a solo traveller, so you get to meet many folks from all corners of the world. However, it is imperative that you are safe always. Check out Smart Travel’s 10 Tips for women traveling alone..
Weather – When is the best time to travel to your destination of choice? Colder months may be less crowded/cheaper to visit some countries. Warmer months are obviously peak travel times but can be more expensive and crowded with other tourists. Weather is also an important consideration as it directly affects what you may have to pack.
Money – How will I save for my next big trip? This is a question pondered by many. The obvious answer – save. It is a great idea to have an online savings account just for your travel. Another important question – What is the current exchange rate on my currency? Traveling when you can get the most return on your own currency is ideal. Stay abreast of currency exchange rates either using a web or a Smart phone app. Then use this information to plan the ideal time for travel.
Mobility – How will I stay mobile within the town/city/country and how can I travel to other cities? It is a smart idea to know how to travel locally within the region of the world you are visiting. On our Regional Travel Planning page, there is a list of trains and ferries that can help you commute across the globe.. The motto of any geek trekker should be to maximize the travel experience as much as possible.
Culture – Will I be treated differently because of my gender, language, religion or attire? Some countries have very different cultural practices, ones you should know about in advance and respect once you are there. Know about your destination country’s history, customary practices and basic information like who’s in power. You should research these for your particular destination, and use this information to help you plan wisely.
Entry Rules – Even more importantly than just knowing a little about the customs and traditions of your destination, does the country you want to travel to require a visa and/or vaccinations? Not sure? This is something that must absolutely be researched. Many countries require US citizens to pay for visas before entry. Sometimes, these visas can cost more than $100 USD and only cover a visit of 3 months or less at a time… Check our Travel Visa page for more information.
(Still fresh out of ideas for your next big trip? If you interested in planning a mega-trip, then check out our TOP TEN LISTS for some MAJOR Travel Inspiration!)
PICKING YOUR TRAVEL BUDDY
Who you travel with can truly make or break your travel experience. If you are adventurous and like to explore local museums and architecture etc., you definitely want to travel with like-minded folk. It’s important to be clear with your travel companion/travel group what are some anticipated activities on the trip. Be clear up front and ensure that everyone is on the same page with tentative itineraries.
WHAT TO DO THERE
There is the internet of course and an assortment of travel guides you can purchase. Check out our favorite Top Travel Guides. However, to be quite honest, there is nothing that compares to the advice of locals for dining, commuting and local activities. It’s always important to do research but it’s just as important to stay flexible!
WHAT TO PACK
Packing all the right items is also critical. Our detailed geek Travel Checklist will keep you organized and well prepared! Most folks tend to overpack on every trip.. Heads up – don’t do it! You will pay for it – literally & figuratively..
Travel planning can be fun and – yes, stressful too. But good research and smart planning always pays off! Click here for some helpful travel planning LINKS. Bon Voyage!