10 tips for planning your trip
A backpacker can never be too well prepared for adventures around the world!
You can never start too early or have too many ideas for your backpacking trip or gap year. If you plan your backpacking trip months in advance, you can leave with peace of mind and excitement in your body, instead of planning it last minute and leaving exhausted and stressed.
If you’re dreaming of backpacking and want to be able to sit back and just enjoy the experiences, we recommend you take a look at our Group Travel! Here we take care of all the planning for you, so you don’t have to concentrate on anything but the butterflies in your stomach!
Take a look at our popular Group Travel to Australia or Group Travel to New Zealand
1. Start your visa in good time
Each country has its own visa rules and the application process varies greatly in duration and scope. Therefore, we recommend starting well in advance and not just looking at it a month before.
For example, a visa to Australia is applied for in a different way than a visa to Vietnam. Therefore, you should expect the price, time and processing time to be very different.
As a rule of thumb, we recommend that you start looking into visa regulations as early as three months before departure.
Also, remember to check the expiration date on your passport. Some places won’t let you in if it doesn’t have a long enough validity date.
Read also: 10 tips for your first backpacking trip
2. Find the perfect backpack for your backpacking trip
This is the alpha and omega!
Hiking around for three months with the wrong backpack on your back is not the way to happiness and unforgettable experiences.
Remember that your backpack is your belt and suspenders on your backpacking trip. It contains everything you’re carrying and everything you’re going to buy. Therefore, it needs to fit perfectly, it needs to have the necessary features, and of course, it needs to be in your favorite color. Then you’re already well on your way to becoming a true backpacker.
3. Don’t commit to too many dates
When you’re on a group trip, you have everything planned down to the last detail. You know what time you eat, what time the bus leaves and what time the party starts. It can be really nice to have everything scheduled at times, but as a backpacker you live by a word and a lifestyle. Freedom.
If you’re going solo in Australia or traveling around Asia with your friends, try not to commit to too many dates. Book the important things and let the surprises and the unexpected create all the little impressions in between.
4. Make a budget for your backpacking trip
A budget is your guide during your backpacking trip, but it’s just as important when planning your backpacking trip.
By creating a budget, you’ll know how much money you need to earn to fulfill your dreams. How much you expect to spend each month and how much money you need to set aside to buy essential items for your trip.
There’s no need to make this post confusing and cumbersome. Instead, make it part of your research and familiarize yourself with the different exchange rates.
Focus on what you can afford rather than what you can’t. Positives over negatives, you know.
Expenses for your backpacking trip in the destination:
New Zealand: High
Read also: 10 tips for backpacking on a budget
5. Get your vaccinations in order
Another one of those items you don’t want to skip. It’s a bit like traveling without travel insurance or living in an apartment without home insurance. It’s just not worth it. Every country has different risk zones and some places have particularly dangerous diseases you can contract if you’re not vaccinated.
As with visas, this is an item you should start thinking about several months before departure. Most vaccines need to be administered over several rounds and have time to be absorbed into your body before you go backpacking.
So dear friend, call the doctor, you don’t want to end up in the hospital in Cambodia!
6. Book the big things well in advance
Airline tickets, group tours, and special overnight stays are a definite advantage to booking well in advance, and there are several reasons for this.
The earlier you go, the cheaper the price will often be. Popular group tours fill up quickly, and if you’ve decided to try a night in a nice hotel for a change, it’s good to have it booked in advance.
Some things are of a certain size that you’ll want to be ahead of them. Other things that happen day-to-day are decisions you make in the moment and where the surprises occur.
7. Less is more – Backpacker over Flashpacker
Fewer destinations and more depth means more value.
There’s a phenomenon floating around these days called “flashpackers“ and it’s the category of travelers who want to see as much as possible in a short time, but don’t really get to see it.
In other words, they see the world in a flash.
We’re not saying that this is necessarily a bad way to travel, but when you’re planning your backpacking trip, it can be beneficial to focus on less rather than more.
When you embark on your gap year trip and squeeze too much into too little time, you’re on a tight schedule and not on an adventure with room for the unpredictable.
8. prioritize destinations that build friendships
Well, I can’t know that in advance, can I?
No, that’s true, but you can do the groundwork to increase your chances as a backpacker to expand your network and meet friends you didn’t know you had.
Talk to other friends of yours who have traveled and ask for their recommendations. Read reviews on various hostels and research where to find the best group tours. Find the destinations with the best parties and look through photos and videos to see if it’s for you.
You can never be sure, but with some good research and a good gut feeling, you’ll be off to a great start!
Read also: Why a youth trip is the best way to spend your money
9. Book the first nights in advance
Planning your first nights at home is a great way to ensure that you and your travel companions get off to a good start on your trip.
If you’re a first-time traveler, you’ll need to get into the groove of how to get around in another country, and you’ll only get into the groove once you’re at your destination.
Once you’ve got the first few nights under control, you can spend the first few days thinking about your next move over and over again. You’re not tied to anything and can let the surprises and impressions you encounter pave the way.
10. Call a friend
You probably have some friends, an older brother or your parents by your side who have some useful travel experience that will benefit you.
We all have different ways of traveling, different priorities and different perceptions of how a trip is best experienced. Therefore, use the network you have to get inspiration and to form the basis of your own journey
When you return home, having grown three years older in three months, you can pass on your own experience. You can help one of your own friends go on the backpacking trip of a lifetime.
A backpacker helps where they can.
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Get more inspiration
Planning is crucial for your backpacking trip
Think of these 10 points as a set of dominoes leaning on each other. If one is unstable or not taken care of, the whole thing can fall apart in a split second.
Of course, some of these points are more essential than others. What they all have in common is that if they’re not included in your planning, your journey can suddenly look very different.
Whatever the course, you’ll have a great trip and we look forward to hearing about your experiences!