Every trip is an adventure in itself. All the elements of a trip fill us with a new sense of excitement and accomplishment for a journey well-traveled. Our idea of a trip generally originates from alluring pictures in magazines or on social media that draw our attention. Images of happy faces basking on a blue beach in Miami or rock climbing in the Himachal-all conjure up sufficient images to incite us to plan a trip. But the catch is-as attractive as it may seem, it is not easy to plan a trip. We will discuss some of the steps of how you can plan your trip in 9 steps.
The anxiety to cover up all too soon invokes chaos. You are not sure about the modes of travel and the places of interest that you want to cover. Even if you zero it down to a choice, budget issues crop up next. In the absence of a definite structure, it all seems too lost. The result-we postpone it for a better tomorrow. To help you finally pack your backpack for your dream destination, here are 9 easy steps that will work for just any trip. All that you need to do is to follow the guidelines, prepare yourself and get ready for a memorable experience.
How To Plan Your Trip In 9 Step Guide
1. Do some Brain Storming
Planning needs to be done with a level head. Take out some free time and sit down with a pen and paper, or jot down some notes on your phone. Try to collect your thoughts regarding where you need to go and why.
- Are you looking for adventure, fun, sports, leisure or just a quick get-away?
- How many days do you plan to travel?
- What is your budget?
- Do you want to travel solo or with family or friends?
- Do you want to plan yourself or take help from a travel agent?
The answers will make things easier, helping you to narrow down your choices.
2. Pick a Destination
This could be tricky if you want to cover many places at a go. If you have something on your bucket list, you can always put it as the number one choice, and try to plan around it. You can take recommendations from friends or get inspired by someone’s travelogue that’s entirely your choice. Just make sure you have ample time to plan your travel, stay and tour to reach that destination timely and safely. Check out the best time of the year to visit that place and plan accordingly.
If you are planning to consult a travel agent, try to check all available tour packages with complete features.
3. Make a Rough Itinerary
This would consist of a rough plan of your journey i.e. what are the places of interest you plan to visit and how much time you want to spend at each place. If you are short of time, there is no need to touch base every tourist spot at your destination. Keep your trip rush-free to get the maximum enjoyment out of it. Similarly, if you have ample time at hand and you want to take it slow, make sure to visit all the places in and around your destination for a vivid travel experience.
This will also help you manage your expenses and estimate your cost of travel.
Also Read: 10 Common Travel Scams and How to Avoid Them
4. Choose your activities and places of interest
The internet provides a vast array of tourist options for your dream destination, and all of them seem easy to access. But the reality is different-distances; cost and accessibility can pose problems. So prioritize the places that you need to visit and what you need to do there. If you going to a beach and also have rock climbing there, make sure to choose your options carefully. Adventure activities are fun but energy-draining, so do not club them with museum strolls or shopping.
If you are following a tour package, it will already have a set schedule, so you need not worry much about this.
5. Manage your Expenses
A good trip revolves around a well-planned budget. You can estimate your expenses as per your travel itinerary. Your cost of travel will include your mode of travel and their costs, hotels, and accommodation, food, sightseeing, adventure sports, shopping and purchase of any travel-related things. Make sure to allocate an emergency reserve for sudden expenses that may crop up. Keep some cash handy also.
If you are traveling abroad, get information about usage fees on your credit and debit cards or any travel cards that you would like to carry. Check your travel insurance as well.
6. Check Deals and Offers
One step ahead in managing your expenses is checking for deals and offers on various bookings for your journey. There is no need to dive straight in with your bookings. If you have a planned journey, your tour operator will take care of that. If not, it is always better to check various booking websites for flight or train tickets, hotel accommodations, and sight-seeing packages. You can compare prices from different sources before making a final choice. Many sites give last minute offers and deals that you can avail the benefits of. A few hundred bucks saved will be an icing on the cake.
7. Book your Travel and Stay
Once planned, you can now go ahead and make your final bookings as per your travel itinerary. Keep in mind that they are subject to changes in availability and price rise over time, so don’t keep them hanging for long. Wherever required, you can try out a mixture of options like flights, train or buses to optimize on time and money. Advance bookings will always fetch you a better price and relief of mind.
All said and done, it’s time to pack now. A major part of your planning over, you can now focus on packing for the trip. Choose your clothing as per the weather. Avoid overpacking and keep your luggage light and sturdy, so that it can move freely with you. A quick packing list can include enough clothes for the duration of your trip, toiletries, a small medical kit, your gadgets, travel documents, and your wallet. Your packing list can be minimal or a real elaborate one-remember you have to carry your stuff, so pack accordingly.
9. Be prepared for last-minute changes
Once you have crossed the packing milestone, you are all set to leave your house for your dream vacation. Just do a last check around your house. Turn off taps and unplug your electronics, water your plants, check your refrigerator for any leftover food and arrange for your pets, if you have any. Arrange for transport to take you to the airport or the railway station. Travel anxiety is obvious, but make sure you don’t go overboard with it. Changes in flight schedules or railway timetables may happen in peak seasons so don’t panic. There’s always a way out.
Now that everything is in place, you can heave a sigh of relief. You can make a quick call to your dear ones and say goodbye. It’s time to hop in your cab or taxi and head for your destination for which you have been planning for so long. Get Set and Go! Bon Voyage!