In my last blog post I announced that this year we are going to travel across South East Asia. Doing something like that requires a lot of planning, of course, and so I thought I’d share what we are doing to prep for the big trip. Any tips and tricks are very much welcome (comment below!).
Write a list of everything that needs to be done
We went very method with this and made a spreadsheet Gantt chart (I did suggest doing it agile with a Trello board but my fellow traveller made a face). We basically brainstormed everything that came to mind that we’d need to sort out before leaving, such as vaccinations, booking flights, making a packing list and the list goes on. We then spread the tasks out over the next months, so we are able to do something each week.
Decide on a date to leave
It might sound obvious, but it turns out it’s not so easy to decide on THE date. Rather daunting but also exciting as it makes it real when you set a date. What helped us was checking the climates in each country we were keen on visiting.
Decide on a budget
Do some research. Depending on the countries you visit, there are so many websites and blogs advising on budgets per country whether you want the luxury experience or backpacker hostel. We are also lucky to have a few friends that have done similar adventures. We asked them whether what we found and calculated sounded realistic and got some tips along the way. It also helped us refine the list of countries.
Choose your countries
Our list was long for the amount of time we’re going to travel for. Whenever I’ve talked to friends, I’ve been advised to cut it down a bit to make time to rest and take it all in. After all, I don’t want to be rushing from one great experience to the next. What we ended up with now is about 2-3 weeks per country.
Our final (I think) list: Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia (Papua), Vietnam, New Zealand and Australia.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Because of the wealth of information that is out there, we think the approach to selecting potential places to visit and see would best be done strategically. So what better way than to start with the UNESCO World Heritage Site. I think it is a good start to get a flavour for each country.
Ask friends and family
Last week I asked for tips and advice on any of the countries we want to visit and I have had a few responses, so thanks for that! I’m thinking that by writing about our process and further down the line about our must-see locations in each country that we’ll get some more feedback.
Anything else you can think of that should be part of travel planning 101?