The day I made the decision to go travelling was pretty mundane to be honest. That decision has shaped my life since and was the best thing I’ve ever done.
So you’ve decided to go traveling (or, at least, you’re thinking about it). Well, good job – but the next few steps are the hardest part.
Step 1. How long are you going for and how much money will you need?
The answer to this question will frame your entire trip. There’s a certain crazy thrill in penciling in plans for a big around-the-world adventure. But how much money are you going to need?
It will be the second most important decision and it will pretty much define what you’re going to be able to do, where you’re going and how long for.
Travelling on a budget is great fun, but having the money to spend on experiences can turn an adventure into the experience of a lifetime.
Let’s say you’ve decided you want to do an around-the-world adventure which will take 12 months. This might cost you $15,000 – $20,000 USD to be able to see the better parts of Europe and experience some amazing activities and events.
Alternatively, you’d rather just spend 4 months checking out South East Asia? I’d recommend the equivalent of $6,000 USD.
So go get a map and a calendar and choose where you’re going to start and how long you’ll be gone for.
Now that that’s done. It’s time for the hardest part of the whole process, Step 2.
Step 2. Find out how long it will take you to save that money, then buy the ticket!
So, it’s going to take you 6 months to save the rest of the money? Great! Now factor in an extra $1,500 for gear, travel insurance, vaccines, and visa’s.
Decide where you want to visit first and the direction you’re going to travel, which lets you visit the countries you want to see most.
Now buy the ticket for 7 months from now and don’t forget to factor in what season your first destination will be in.
You’ll want to have the extra time to save that last bit of cash and say your farewells to friends and family. Also, you’ll need this time to research you coming trip and get your affairs in order (step 3).
Step 3. Now that’s done, put your learning hat on and get informed.
You should circle the day you leave on your calendar, then start researching everything you need to know. You’ll be so damn excited that you won’t be able to stop yourself from trawling through the endless information online.
The things you’ll need to know:
- Where can you get the best travel insurance?
- What vaccines do you need for each country?
- What Visa’s do you need?
- What things do you want to see in each country?
- Will you need to catch any flights to skip over a country or get to a new continent?
- Where do I want to end up?
You’ll also need to buy these things.
- A backpack.
- First Aid Kit.
- Medicine if necessary.
- A camera and accessories if needed.
- Laptop, smartphone or tablet.
- Some decent shoes.
- Here’s my gear that I carry around the world for reference.
Step 4. Now start the process of getting ready to leave.
You have plenty of time to get everything in order. Don’t panic but also don’t leave things until the last-minute.
To be organised, make sure you:
- Photocopy your important documents.
- Get some passport photos, they’re often needed for Visas.
- Close all accounts and bills.
- Find someone to look after your house, pets, friends.
- Clean up your possessions.
- Make peace with your enemies.
- Get an STD check.
- Make peace with your god.
- Write a bucket list.
- Start a blog.
- Get a Dropbox/iCloud account to keep all of your documents and photos safe.
- Partly like the devil after your last day of work.
In all serious, good luck. You’re going to have the time of your life.