Have money, will travel. But to where?
You have 8 months to travel, where are you going to go? Good questions. I usually read travel magazines/sites/blogs and scroll through IG travel accounts, so if at any time someone asks me where I want to go, I have a quick, not so short, list of places. Getting a list of place that I wanted to visit was easy, narrowing it down, so I wasn’t jumping around between cities and countries every 2 days, was the hard part. Process of elimination was key here.
I decided to start out close and familiar, and work my way out farther. We’re going to Europe, the Caribbean, out west in USA, Ghana, Nigeria, Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, and Vietnam….beyyyaaa!!
In addition to recommendations from friends I used my most trusted resource…the INTERNET, to get a general sense of where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do in each country. Regular old Google searches and TripAdvisor were helpful, but smaller blogs that gave specifics on different area are clutch. I was also pleasantly surprised that each time I mentioned my trip to someone, not only where they excited for me, but they had some recommendations that helped form my itinerary.
Usually I have a full itinerary ready, but I wanted to relinquish some control for this trip and not plan everything to death. If I got to a country and came upon an opportunity to go to another, I was open to it. My itinerary was a guide, not a mandate. And if I planned something and it didn’t work out, so what. There was still going to be an opportunity to be somewhere I hadn’t been before, so I was just going to make the most of it.
General plan ✔️
Positive disposition ✔️
Visas & travel vaccines… oh wait, yeah I'm not ready to go yet…
From my list of countries I only needed tourist visas for a few and they’re easy to get. Google search with tell you if you need a visa and how to get one for each country. Your doctor, or the CDC’s website if your doctor isn’t as great as mine (😘 Dr Chekuri), will tell you what shots you need for each country. There’s a specific amount of time before you reach the country that you need to get these shots, so check visas and shots as soon as you know where and when you’re traveling. Sadly most insurance doesn’t cover travel vaccines so you’ll need to add those costs to your budget.
All ready and excited to leave! Then, the doubt monster creeps in...
Wait, should I be doing this? Give up a great paycheck? Use my savings to go on vacation? Am I going to get “Tooken”? Is someone when a particular set of skills going to be able to find me? What am I going to do when I get back?
Between January and April 2019 I probably had this conversation with myself at least 4 times. Blessings to the kind souls who encouraged me along the way, and these fortune cookies that basically said “Girl, if you don’t pack your bags and go already…”
Ok, we’re doing this. Time to prepare for takeoff.