Planning – Where to go Backpacking?
Planning where to go Backpacking?
It really is vital that you get a feel for the sort of places you may or more importantly may not wish to visit the best way to do this is planning where to go backpacking.
If you plan well you will be able to answer the following questions:
Planning where I want to go
This is relatively easy as you already have an idea about where you want to go. More importantly where do you want to go when you get to your destination?
Get a pen and pad and go for it list some of the following as it will really help you to gauge how long you will need to spend in a country and help you decide what to do when you get there
• What countries do I want to go to?
• What states do I want to visit?
• What cities do I want to see?
• What attractions do I want to do in that country?
• What sites do I want to see?
• Where do I want to fly into?
• Where do I want to fly out from?
If you plan it right the chances the rest will become a lot easier!
Planning which direction I should travel in
This was a very interesting topic for me. There are loads of different companies supplying flights to travellers and different agents offer different flight options and packages.
If you look in the right place you are sure to find a flight going in the direction you wanted.
You can fly around the world in BOTH directions you know ;@)
When you know which direction you want to travel in you can also apply this to each country if your planing is right.
These important questions can really help you plan your route.
Ask yourself some more questions
- •Do I go to the USA first and get the big spend out the way or last when I am skint?
•Do I go to Thailand first or last as it is cheap and I can stay longer
•Should I fly into Auckland and out from Christchurch or in and out of the same airport?
•Which seasons do I want to travel though? – Planning could mean a year of summer or winter
Note from Darren:
When I was thinking about my journey there were loads of different places I wanted to go; some I decided were must goes like Canada and Australia and some were less important like Hawaii and the Bahamas.
While it is great to have loads of places to chose from, be prepared to play destinations off against each other as money, flight paths, visas, sanctions and connections can mean it is difficult to cover everything.
One of the less desired places on the original could be great for future holiday destination rather than part of your trip.
Planning how to avoid the places I don’t want to go
This is a tough one as you don’t always know where you don’t want to go!
There will be places in your itinerary you will be going to go to regardless, this is either because of the airport or connection takes you there or because you want to break up a long trip.
When you have your final list of destinations one of the best ways to avoid the places you don’t want to go is to find somewhere you do want to go to that fits in with your route or to break up your journey.
Note from Darren:
If you are going from LA to New Zealand you may want to break up the journey have you heard if Fiji? Well you may or may not want to go there but you could stop by, visit a few places or regroup. If you like it change your flight and stay a while and if not recoup and get on with your trip!
If you are going across a country and don’t want to stop in the middle of nowhere head for a city in between. But if you want to avoid a city check out somewhere along the way and try your luck to break up the journey.
Planning how long you need to stay somewhere
If you have attempted the where do I want to go? Section you should have a good idea of where you want to go and what you want to see there.
The simple way is to work out the following:
• How long you will need to recover from your travels?
• How many days you need to plan and organise?
• How long it will take to visit what you want to visit?
• How long can I chill?
If you can do this for each country and each place you should have a good idea of roughly how long you will need in each place. Compare this to the time you have to travel and your budget and you will have a reasonable plan.
I on the other hand knew I had a year and decided as I travelled along to ensure I experienced what I wanted to in each place.
Note from Darren:
Remember, most of the time you can change your flights if you want to stay a while longer or more importantly if you have had enough and want to move on you can consider this when planning your trip as it may mean you miss somewhere out or squeeze somewhere else in.
Planning how to prioritise destinations
The trouble with priorities is that they will more than likely change along the way.
I went to Australia with a year VISA, the great barrier reef was one of my must to priorities but in 6 months I still never made it there even though i was planning to.
So to help you work out what is a priority for you at this point you really need to focus on these questions and any others you may think of who, what, where, when, why and how?
What is the point of my trip? (Write mission statement)
Where do I want to go?
Why do I want to go there?
When do I want to go there?
What do I want to do when I get there?
Who do I want to meet when I get there?
How long do I want to be there?
How will I get there?
Answer as many of these questions and any more you may have, the more questions and answers you have the easier it should be to identify the priorities of your trip.
Planning how to budget for your itinerary
I have already prepared a whole section budgeting for my backpacking trip for easy reference.
This section will give you some great tips and advice and help you to work out your budget which can be vital when planning your journey.
It is relatively difficult to budget for your whole itinerary unless you know what your itinerary looks like.
When you have a idea of what you want to do you can break it down a little more.
• Decide where you want to go
• Decide what you want to do when you get there
• Decide how long you are going to be there for
• Work out your fixed costs (flights, insurance, visas etc)
• Work out your variable costs (accommodation, food, drink, travel)
• Are you going to work? If so how long and how much will you make?
• Compare these to your budget (the amount you have to spend)
• Make the necessary changes to fit within your budget (see how do I make the cut?)
Planning how to make the cut
When you plan your trip you will come up with a list of places you want to go, a list of things you want to do, a list of people you want to see etc etc
Making the cut is all about prioritising your itinerary to make it fit your budget.
To do this you need to narrow down your list here are a few helpful points to help you make the cut
• Make a top 10 list of destinations
• Decide how long you have to travel
• Decide roughly how long you want to spend in each “top 10”
• Consider the cost of each destination for the time you are there
• Compare the cost of the itinerary to you budget to establish the amount you need to save
• Make the cut by reorganising the top 10 to cover as many as possible for the budget
The thing is there is always the chance of another trip if you want it bad enough, You could end up with 5 of your 10 but that’s ok as some places are better for a holiday than to travel around.
Make the most of your trip with the time and the budget you have, the trip can be flexible you if you want to stay longer or move on more quickly the chances are you can.
Need some inspiration?
Head to Destinations
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