In part I of this blog I wrote about the first considerations when it comes to planning and preparing a world trip. Read this part on this page.
Getting the right gear
Once you’ve figured out where you want to go you can start thinking about what to pack. I’ve done a lot of research on the internet and found that many people are bringing a 60 liter backpack.
I’m traveling to different continents with widely ranging temperatures. And am planning to hike a lot. This asked for a lot of different gear including warm clothes and proper hiking shoes, which take up a lot of space. I found it quite challenging to stuff everything in a 60 liter backpack and eventually was very happy to get myself a 55 to 65 liter backpack. This gives just enough space to add small souvenirs and things I buy on the road. For information about what to pack on your world trip, check this page; part I and Part II (coming soon).
In any case, it’s important to get yourself a proper backpack. I almost made the mistake to start off with a low- budget Quechua backpack. I knew it wasn’t right from the first time I tried it. But since the previous Quechua backpack was alright on previous short trips and I was given this one as a substitute I figured it should be okay. It was when I filled the bag (still looked alright) and tried it on (a bit heavy, but alright) and walked with it (impossible! My back was wrecked immediately!) that I figured there is no back support what so ever. It was like carrying all that weight direct on the shoulders instead of the hips. It was then when I started trying some serious backpacks and chose the Low Alpine Duran 55-65 as the proper backpack for me.
Getting the right travel insurance
It’s important to get a travel insurance that fits your needs. Compare different travel insurances and choose the one that covers your needs. For me it was important to have the freedom to do either paid work or volunteer work whenever I want to. Some companies cover these activities while others don’t or charge an extra fee.
Also important; choose an insurance that covers all medical costs to the cost-price. If not, you are limited to the costs of the same treatment in your own country. Every bit more spend is on your own account. This amount can be quite high as in some countries health care is really expensive.
If you are Dutch be aware of the following; depending on your plans you are either obliged to keep or lose your Dutch health care insurance. Check with your health care company weather you should keep your insurance or not.
I found and compared four Dutch travel insurance companies; Allianz Globetrotter, Special ISIS, Tazman and Australian Backpackers. I choose the last one as the contribution is not to high and there are many benefits that suits my needs.
Get yourself a credit card
In case you don’t have any yet, try to get yourself a credit card while you still have your job. The credit card company is going to check whether or not you are legit and having a job really helps to look credible. You can use your credit card worldwide in case your regular bankcard doesn’t work. Furthermore, credit cards are frequently asked for when booking a ticket online.
Get your administration ready
Book your flight and your first night(s) in a hostel. Print your tickets and booking confirmation. Get your visa’s in time and make (digital) copies of important documents including your passport. Write down the phone numbers of your bank, your credit card company, your insurance company. Get your medicine passport when needed. Write down addresses from friends/ relatives and store everything in your email or cloud.
I think this sums up most of my planning and preparing considerations. Quite a lot of things to consider, but definitely worth the effort!
Which of these preparations are useful to you? How you do prepare your (long)trip? Feel free to share any thoughts or suggestions 🙂