Travelling is a popular hobby with tourists around the world, but when you’re doing it for the long term, it’s a whole new challenge. However, it is possible – so long as you’re prepared.
Here are seven necessary quick tips to help you prepare for a long stint of travel.
Ensure it’s really for you
The very first thing you need to do in preparation for long-term travel is consider whether it’s really for you or not. Travelling can take its toll, and when you’re away from home for an extended period of time, you might not be able to deal with it.
It takes some drive and determination to embark on a lengthy stint of travel, so ensure you’re ready for it. If you get a gut feeling that it isn’t for you, don’t put yourself through it – perhaps instead split it up into different trips. However, it’s one of the most rewarding and exciting experiences of a lifetime, so if you do feel ready for it, don’t let anything hold you back.
You shouldn’t make packing a last-minute affair. Be sure to pack carefully and strategically, especially when travelling for the long-term – this doesn’t mean you have to lug your entire life belongings around with you. Instead, keep it minimal and necessary.
A tip shared by many travellers is to pack a week’s worth of clothing and simply do laundry. Be sure to bring some extra essentials, though – earplugs, copies of documents, rain gear and plug adaptors, as recommended by the Secret Traveller, are all crucial. Don’t fret too much, however, as you’ll likely be able to pick everything up once you’re out there should you forget anything vital.
Have a rough itinerary
Although spontaneity is the key when travelling, it’s crucial you have at least a rough itinerary of where you want to visit and when, so that you can work with it and follow a loose plan should you find yourself feeling lost.
So long as you have this itinerary, you’ll be able to figure everything else out along the way. Think about different routes, things you definitely want to see and timings for each, and you’ll find the trip will be a whole lot easier than if you go in without any idea.
Consider your job
Of course, when it comes to travelling, your job will likely be called into question. Unless you’ve been there for a considerably long time – many companies grant a three-month “sabbatical” holiday as a reward for loyalty – you may find it difficult to compromise.
Quitting your job is the common option, and although that may sound daunting and undesirable, there are plenty of ways to make money while you travel. Many people even manage to continue their journey around the world without having to return home.
Think about your budget
Have you saved up enough? Although you can make money when travelling, as mentioned above, it’s important you’ve got a substantial amount to work with. Think about the expenditure on the necessities, and be sure to have more for the fun stuff, too.
Consider converting a certain amount before you go, too, as you’ll likely need some immediate currency as soon as you arrive. Convert before you fly, though – exchange rates in airports are poor compared to the high street counterparts.
Don’t leave anything at home unfinished
Be sure you’ve tied up anything at home before you go – you’ll be away for a long time, and you don’t want to return to any unfinished work projects, unpaid bills or other nasty surprises you’re hoping to simply forget about.
Although travelling is an escape from the trials and tribulations of the real world, it’s crucial you don’t ditch your priorities. Be sure to sort everything and have your responsibilities in order before fleeing.
Don’t hold back
Most importantly, don’t hold yourself back. Travelling is all about making the most of your experiences, seeing and doing as much as you possibly can. Ditch your nerves and your hesitation, and live your trip to the very fullest.
Do you have any more tips for long-term travel? I’d love to hear them in the comments below.
* This was a collaborative post with Luke Clifton #sp