Things to Think about when planning a Trip
I know that planning a trip of any size can seem daunting at first, from choosing where you want to go to what all you want to do when you get there. I have made a list of some of the things I focus on, these are some of the things that Ive learned through failure and success.
1. Decide where you want to go
This step is the most important, you wont be able to move onto the next steps if you cannot decide where you want to go first. Some of the things I consider when narrowing down a place I want to visit is the cost and the culture. I love travelling to cheap places, because they help me stretch my money just that much farther without sacrificing comfortably. Next thing I focus on when choosing a destination is the culture, do I like the culture? Do I want to know more about that culture? These are just some of the things I would focus on.
2. Next decide how much time you want to be there
This is an independent variable solely based on many factors such as how much free time you have? How much money you have saved up? And are there many activities or things for you to do in your intended destination to keep you occupied?
3. Decide your budget
I think this step should come very early in your trip planning process because it carries with it the rest of your trip. Whether you have a daily budget of a $100USD a day or just $25-50USD. This is where your research will come in next, in lowering and minimizing your extra costs.
4. Research, Research, Research..
Now comes the real meat of your trip planning process. However, this step doesnt always have to be the most daunting step, this step can actually be the most fun and enjoyable step. The research process should and can be fun, this step allows you to learn about your intended destination before you even arrive there.
Heres where my resource list comes in handy
5. Start putting back money
This step involves some diligence and self-motivation and focus. You will have to discipline yourself on this step, you will have to stop spending unnecessary money on things you dont need. Try cutting back the coffee stops at Starbucks and no more fast food lunch breaks. Try to pack your lunch for work and make your own coffee. These things can add up quickly and you will realize wow I can actually do this.
- Get rid of coffee
- Get rid of TV
- Get rid of Fast-food
- Take public transportation if you can
- Get a roommate
6. Get rewards credit cards
This is the next step to saving money, by getting yourself free plane tickets or hotel stays. With being in the age of the savvy consumer you need to take advantage of the easiest ways to save money and travel cheaper and farther. Check out my beginners guide to travel hacking and my page of top reward credit cards.
7. Get the flight
Get your flight as early as possible, especially if your using your hard earned frequent flyer miles for this step. If you didnt do that easy step check out skyscanner, theflightdeal frequently for mistake or low fares to certain destinations.
8. Get your accommodation
Try to book your accommodation after your flight as early as possible if you have a set schedule or a short trip. This will insure you have a great price and availability at more popular destinations or peak seasons. Great sites such as hostelworld, airbnb, or hotels.com to find cheap accommodations.
9. Time to Pack!
Always create a packing list. Not only does it reduce the amount of junk you pack, but it also comes in handy whenever you are leaving. I cant tell you how many times I have left something in a hotel or a hostel before I started making a list. During your research stage, look at what kind of clothing you will need, and if essentials, such as sunscreen, are affordable, or if you need to pack your own.
10. Enjoy your trip!
Now that you have everything ready and planned, all that is left is to enjoy your vacation. Relax and dont worry about all the details, because you already have it all planned out.