You want to travel the world but you have no idea where to start? If you presume that a round-the-world trip is an unattainable dream that can only be considered if you’re very wealthy, think again! Contrary to popular belief, going around the world is actually very simple and accessible. Here are seven questions to ask yourself to help you organize your trip.
1) How much time do you have?
Technically, you could go around the world in less than 48 hours if you were to take consecutive flights. But, where would be the fun in that? The beauty of a round-the-world trip is to discover faraway destinations, soak up local culture and try new experiences. In order to plan this big journey, you will need to answer an essential question: Do you have to be back in your home country at a specific point in time? Do you have obligations? Having the liberty to travel without a return date rather than having a time-limit will affect your decision-making process.
2) Do you plan on working abroad?
You want to live out like you’re retired, but can you actually afford it? You should consider working in one of the countries you will visit to replenish your bank account and gain work experience abroad. Australia and New Zealand are the most popular destinations to earn money while travelling.
Websites like WorkAway, WWOOF, HelpX and Helpstay can help you stretch your dollars by promoting work exchanges (a few hours of work in exchange for food and lodging).
3) How much money do you have saved up?
Did you put aside money? Calculate the amount of money you saved thus far for your travels and add any future income you will receive while you’re away (e.g. a tax return). For a round-the-world trip, you should budget between $30 to $100 per day according to your chosen destinations. Don’t worry, there are plenty of ways to travel on a small budget with low-cost airlines and the sharing economy (by using Couchsurfing, Airbnb or ride sharing for instance).
4) Which countries are on your wish list?
Planning a round-the-world trip requires a bit of an introspection. It’s an opportunity to delve deep into your soul to reveal what really thrills you. What do you aspire for? Follow your heart’s desires! Perhaps all you want to do is sit back and relax on a paradise island doing absolutely nothing. On the opposite, do you wish to take on a physical and mental challenge by going on a trek in the Himalayas? You could be dreaming of visiting World Wonders from Machu Picchu to the Great Pyramids. Maybe you hope to develop new skills such as learning a foreign language. You could also fantasize about participating in various extreme sports like bungee jumping, skydiving, paragliding and rock climbing. Do you visualize yourself exploring the marine life while scuba diving? May it be landmarks or activities, continue to feed your wandering mind. There’s nothing more exhilarating than making dreams a reality.
5) Which direction are you going and in which order?
By evaluating your budget, the amount of time you have available and your level of comfort towards the unknown, you can roughly sketch the outline of your round-the-world trip. If you purchased a one-way ticket, you can easily change your itinerary to suit your desires (or your encounters). There’s nothing wrong with travelling in the opposite direction to what was originally planned.
While you are travelling long-term, you will find some comfort by going back to a destination that you are already familiar with. Bangkok, for instance, might not be love at first sight, but once you get your bearings, it will actually grow on you. It can also be a base camp to recharge your batteries before continuing your journey through Asia. It’s important to find places where you can allow yourself some time to rest. After all, you’re not doing a race around the world.
6) Do you need visas or shots?
Even though Canadians can visit 101 countries without a visa, check beforehand the immigration laws of your next destination. Certains pays nécessitent que tu te déplaces en personne à l’ambassade avec des papiers précis et des photos pour te procurer un visa. Il faut donc prévoir le temps et le montant nécessaires.
In terms of mandatory or recommended vaccinations, it’s advisable to have it done prior to your departure at a travel clinic. Even if you’re still undecided about where you are going, it’s better to share your estimated itinerary with your doctor to see which one is relevant to get. Some countries might require a proof of yellow fever immunization, so keep an up-to-date version of your vaccination record.
7) How to pick a good travel insurance for a round-the-world trip?
Make sure you can extend your travel insurance while you are abroad. If the length of your trip is not fixed or if your plans change, call your insurance company before your coverage comes to term. In certain cases, if your travel insurance is already expired, it might not be possible to renew it without having to go back to your home country (which can put a damper on a round-the-world trip).
Decide whether or not your round-the-world trip will include stops in Canada and the United States. Most travel insurance coverages increase in price when your journey takes you to Canada or the United States. You can select between a “Worldwide EXCLUDING Canada/United States” or a “World INCLUDING Canada/United States” coverage.
Be aware that certain countries are excluded from your coverage. Some insurance policies don’t cover trip destinations with a Travel Warning issue by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, such as war zone countries. Check out the Government of Canada website (travel.gc.ca) to find out the risk level of your next destination under the “Travel Advice and Advisories” tab. When in doubt, call your travel insurance company to confirm that the countries you will visit are included in your policy.
Choose more than just a medical coverage. When you travel long-term you can select an “All Inclusive Package” which provides coverage for additional components such as travel baggage and personal effects in case of loss or theft. This guarantees to give you peace of mind during your round-the-world trip.
What’s stopping you from travelling around the world? Go ahead, do it!
Article by Nomad Junkies team