Photo: Don't forget your passport.

After reading our section on Less is More you're probably thinking you'll be needing an advanced degree in Travel Planning 101 before embarking on your trip. In fact the opposite is the case.

Travel planning should be easy and need not be too detailed. One of the more disappointing experiences is when your trip is nothing but a series of missed deadlines and connections.

When you're trip planning, concentrate on the broad strokes -- getting from A to B -- don't worry about what you're actually going to see, nor how you're going to see it. How broad the strokes depends on the individual.

Some people are happy with something like:

Others may go for:

While others still may opt for:

There's nothing wrong with any of the above, though when you see a trip plan which starts like the following you start to worry:

Having some kind of trip plan is a good idea. It will help you organise your time and get the most out of your trip.

Just don't forget that one of the ideas of having a holiday is to relax, unwind and have a good time. A trip plan which tries to fit in too much or is the length of a thesis will not help you relax, nor will it help you have fun.

If it takes you more than five minutes to explain what you're doing in your trip, chances are you've planned too much!

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 Be sure to have adequate insurance cover before you travel. We recommend World Nomads


Further reading

Planning well is an integral part of getting the most out of your trip. Be it picking the right backpack, the right vaccinations or the right country, the simple decisions are often the most important.


Getting started

Put your hand up if you just have no idea what you're doing. No idea where to go, when to go or even how to go. Should you be travelling independently, or is an organised tour the better way to go. Where are some of our favourites? Read on.


How to plan

You know when you're going and you know when you're coming back. In between there is a big gap. How do you fill it? Here are some quick pointers.


Insurance

Please let us make this very clear. If you can't afford adequate insurance cover, you can't afford to travel. Period. Read on to find out why.


Health & safety

Despite all the thought that goes into packing, one of the most common things forgotten is common sense. Here are some pointers to keep in mind if you'd like to stay healthy during your trip.


Money & costs

So what is this trip actually going to cost you? More then the bus to the airport and the flight ticket, that's for sure. Read on for some handy budgeting tips.


Travel with kids

People travel with children? Really? Are you one of them? Are you mad?


Accommodation

When someone tells you the accommodation is a bit basic, what does that actually mean?


Food & drink

Useful for staying alive. Also delicious and occasionally sickening. Read on for the skinny.


Transport

Southeast Asia has planes, trains and automobiles. It also has ojeks, xe-oms, songtheaws and horse carts.


Volunteering & work

Volunteering and paid employment may well be a bit more complicated than back home, and, especially with volunteering, may not be as helpful as you thought.


What to pack & gear advice

Packing is like an all you can eat buffet. You may want to eat it all, but that is rarely a good idea.


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