Traveling can truly be a life-changing experience. There is nothing like setting off to explore new cultures, try fantastic new food and experience a bit of what life is like in other parts of the world. Unfortunately, traveling can also be incredibly expensive and often fraught with difficulty. This is especially true if you’ve really been bitten by the travel bug and suddenly have the desire to set off for a month or more. For most people, this idea might sound like an impossibility no matter how strong their desire is. Nonetheless, taking the trip of a lifetime can be a lot easier than you might think. In fact, it can sometimes be as simple as following these basic steps to ensure you’re fully prepared for your around the world adventure.
Step 1: Finding the Money to Finance Your Trip
Money is usually the biggest thing stopping people from taking the trip of their dreams. Nonetheless, the truth is that most people could easily afford to take a one-, two- or even six-month trip if they focused for some time on saving as much money as they can. Of course, you shouldn’t risk bankrupting yourself merely for the sake of travel. At the same time, almost everyone can find countless ways to cut back on their normal expenses if they try hard enough. Simply put, if you want to travel bad enough, you can almost always find ways to make it financially possible even if it takes a year or two of scrimping and saving.
Step 2: Consider Your Home and Family Matters
You’ll also need to figure out what to do with your home or apartment while you’re gone. If you rent a place in your current city, consider renters insurance in order to keep your valuables safe and covered during your stay. Some renters insurance polices can cover subleasing but that will be up to the company writing the policy. If you can rent your home while you are traveling, you can earn a bit of extra cash while you’re away or at least not having to pay rent. In addition, you should also consider things like stopping your mail, temporarily discontinuing your newspaper delivery, paying for bills ahead of time, etc.
Step 3: Planning, Visas, and the Passport Application Process
For a particularly long trip, you probably don’t want to confine yourself to just one country. Still, this is obviously a matter of personal preference. Nonetheless, there are bound to be a number of potential issues you may have to deal with wherever you decide to go. The first and most obvious issue is getting a passport if you don’t already have one. The passport application process can take weeks or even months, so it is important to start this as early as possible. As well, you’ll also want to check the visa requirements for each country you think you will visit as you may also need to apply for visas in advance.
Step 4: Discuss Your Options with Your Employer
Once you finally have the money together for your trip, the next thing to do is discuss your plans with your employer. If you have vacation time saved up, now is obviously the time to use it since this will allow you to continue earning a salary for at least part of your trip. Some people end up just quitting their current job and finding another one when they return from their trip, while others use the time in between jobs as an excuse to finally take that trip they’ve always dreamt of. Alternatively, you can see if it’s possible to take an extended leave. In this case, it usually helps if you are fully flexible with your dates and are willing to travel whenever your work is at its least busy. Lastly, there’s always the option of finding ways to earn money while you travel, usually through work found online.
Step 5: Keep Yourself Busy as You Count Down the Days
You’re sure to be excited once everything is planned and you’ve bought your tickets. Unfortunately, this type of excitement can make the days seem to drag, and time only seems to go slower and slower the closer your trip gets. However, you can help to pass the time by making sure you’re better prepared for your trip. This can mean reading up on the locations and sites you want to visit or taking time to try to learn a bit of the local language. Of course, it doesn’t really matter what you do at the end of the day. The only thing that really matters is that you’re finally about to do what you’ve always dreamt of and take that trip of a lifetime.