Plan your Trip – Ensure Your Peace of Mind – Enjoy the Adventure
While some prefer to travel without planning, to “save the magic of the unexpected”, it’s still not a bad idea to be prepared when you hit the road – especially when it’s a huge trip like the one Izabel did – from Southeastern Europe to South America – Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru.
Of course the more you travel, the more prepared you become for each new trip. According to her, “There is no preparation without information – whether we are talking about budget or gear, or just packing your luggage.”
The “Official Side” of Traveling
She suggests that reading official information is a must when it comes to organizing access to a particular country. In this case, although she normally prefers to handle things on her own, her advice is, “never cut the cost as far as official institutions are involved – you’d better pay more if this will buy you peace of mind and security.”
Visa First, for example, does just that – takes care of the “official part” of your trip to ensure your peace of mind and security. That includes everything you need before you leave home such as visas, bank accounts, arrival packages, SIM cards, and more.
The “Fun Side” of Traveling
So, once the official part is all sorted out, it’s time to have the fun. Still, however, a small portion of planning is not redundant and it definitely won’t kill the adventure. In fact, reading forums, the ‘Lonely Planet’, as well as considering some rumours, may even bring a bigger adventure when you visit the particular place. Here’s why: If you have no idea where you are going, and what you may expect, you may simply miss the exciting places because you are not aware of their existence.
By reading, however, that “the Milky Way seen from the Atacama can literally spell on you”, as Izabel described, you will know that going to the Atacama – the driest desert in the world – will bring you this unforgettable experience.
Well, of course, you will have the element of a surprise regardless of your planning – and this is particularly true when it comes to meeting new people on the road. A lot of them are experienced backpackers and travellers and will give you valuable travel tips that you can’t find in books or online.
Actually, running into random folks while travelling is a magic of its own. Here’s what kind of people Izabel met on her 5-week trip: “From wild junkies to white collars, from drug dealers (plenty of drugs unfortunately on the streets of South America) to super-models, from nice indigenous people to prosperous students…You can meet practically everybody. We even got acquainted with the Russian champion of alpinism.”
In short, be as much spontaneous as you’d like to when it comes to choosing your travel destination. However, by planning your trip you make sure you take full advantage of it especially when you have limited time and budget.
“Above all, I prefer to be well informed,” Izabel explained. “In an ideal world, I would improvise more without counting time and following a schedule, however, since the real world always calls back I personally cannot avoid planning and scheduling as by the end of the day I have to fit in a defined budget and amount of time. There are bills to pay, engagements at home and improvised wandering cannot be of an absolute value. At least in my world!.”