Taking the Plunge…

Preparing to go traveling for a year

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Katie & Graham
25th August 2018
When we told our friends and family that we were going to quit our jobs (at the age of 30!) and travel the world for the year, they most likely thought that we were mad/brave/lucky. We think that we are all three.

It hasn’t been easy but with a lot of planning and a touch of gusto we handed in our resignations and put our beloved flat up for rent. After saving our asses off and making a very detailed spreadsheet (or three) we were ready to go!

Here are a few planning tips from some novice travellers!

1. Budget

We are very fortunate to have been able to save up enough to travel for a year. It took a lot of self-control and will power and we did have to move back our leaving date a few times to make sure we had enough money. We made a “savings” spreadsheet to keep us on track.

Work out how much you can realistically save and then you will know where you can go and for how long. For example we knew we wanted to spend a couple of months in Japan, so we made sure we had other countries on our itinerary which were really cheap to balance it out.

Now we are away we have a daily budget to stick to and use the app ‘Travel Spend’ to track our spending which has been so useful.

travel planning tips
Budget planning on the ferry to Koufonisia
2. Where to go?

We took most of our inspiration from travel bloggers and social media.

The fact that we had friends planning a wedding in Andros and our love of South East Asia made our route planning very simple!

Consider places that you already love that you haven’t seen enough of, this was Thailand for us, and places you know nothing about. We originally thought a year would have been plenty of time to do Southeast-Asia and South America until we started planning and realised we couldn’t fit it all in so we decided to leave South America for another time.

Just be flexible and don’t worry if your final plan looks nothing like your original idea!

For a starting point we would recommend island hopping in Greece, Thailand and also Bali/Lombok/Gilli Islands.

Koufonisia, Greece

Krabi, Thailand

Mount Rinjani, Lombok

3. Health

We thought we were super organised sorting our vaccinations four months before leaving, but we still didn’t have enough time to fit in a full course of Tick-borne encephalitis. Be more organised than we were and sort these as soon as you know where you are going.

In the UK we found Superdrug travel clinic to be the cheapest by a long shot.

travel planning tips
Check if you need anti-malarials – we got a prescription from our GP but then bought our medications from an online pharmacy which turned out to be less than half the price of high-street pharmacies.

A few other important things to remember:

  • Go to the dentist just before you leave
  • Ensure your smear is up to date
  • Take a first-aid kit with dressings, painkillers, anti-inflammatories, antiseptic creams and anti-diarrhoea tablets
4. Gadgets

A few gadgets which have turned out to be invaluable:

  • Worldwide plug adapter (MLPC Adapter) £19.99 on Amazon
  • Portable speaker (JBL Go) £24.99 on Amazon
  • Wireless headphone splitter-connects 2 sets of wireless headphones to same device (MPOW Bluetooth transmitter) £12.81 on Amazon
  • Power Banks (Anker Powercore) £32.99 on Amazon
  • Grahams Cordless Wahl Senior hair clippers – His biggest concern about being out of England for a year was how will I maintain my ‘pigs skin’ and will there be a hairdryer! I went to a lesson with his barber and have been cutting the ‘pigs skin’ since!  £129.99 on Amazon
Things to take travelling
5. Most importantly…

If you want to do it, then DO IT.
Life is so short, you only live once!
If we had a pound for every time we have heard ‘I wish I had done that at your age’ we could travel forever!
Have no regrets!

Here’s to a great year!

Travelling couple
Hanging gardens hotel Ubud, Bali
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