RESEARCH AND PLANNING FOR AN AROUND THE WORLD JOURNEY
August 9, 2008 by admin
Anyone who so strongly desires to travel that they will go to the lengths required by an around the world trip can rightly be called a travel aficionado. We are the fans, the collectors, the devotees, the nuts, bolts and kooks of the normal traveling world. We don’t do groups or cruises and we, generally, don’t use travel agencies to get around. Nor do we reserve in advance. We are the renegades and we already know how to travel.
Therefore, there is no one way to prepare. Each of us might do it differently every time, depending upon our immediate circumstances or upon our mood and the purpose of the new travel itch. So, who am I to say how it should be done? Things, more or less, fall together in a common sense way as they occur to us or as we scan the books and websites to which our quest leads. Often, by the time we season into global circumnavigation, some aspects are second nature and we weave them into our daily to-do list of normal life.
Besides, as Daytona 500 or Indy-grade travelers, we subscribe to the stuff that keeps us abreast. We approach the subject as professionals and indeed, some of us have worked in the field of world travel. I cut my teeth on the toughest travel steak: organizing and leading groups of Citizen Diplomats throughout the Soviet Union in the early 1990’s while that country was still the USSR and under Communist control. Later, I took certification training to become an international tour manager for any normal travel organization, but my great preference has always been solo travel.
There’s no need here to preach to the choir in spelling out all the little details of pre-trip planning. Many internet websites cater to world travel and are deep wells of information, particularly in sharing other traveler’s personal experiences on the road. My favorite site is BootsnAll.com, a one-stop shop for everything related to world class backpack traveling.
I always study and take along a Lonely Planet guidebook to help determine which countries and cities to visit and later, as a practical tool for my daily movement. There are people who disdain such props but I won’t leave home without one for every area that I hope to visit. I plan to investigate the new Amazon kindle electronic book if that downloads these travel guides because it would surely eliminate the weight of these hefty books.
The first step always must be a framework of your overall trip. Start with a wish list and then narrow it down as you learn costs and time factors. Then read the guidebook to try it on for size. Some places will call to you, others will warn you away, in your heart. At the beginning, you only need to define your big goals, such as an entry and a departure city. You can fill in the blanks as you go. In future postings I will cover some of the routine things that must be done before every departure.