I feel self-conscious every time I come across a new travel blog where the author makes it seem like he/she left home on a whim to backpack around the world. Ironically, when it comes time for me to shove off, I expect to update my About page in a similar fashion. It sells the fantasy, and helps to inspire (or make jealous), all those people who would love to quit their job and see the natural and man made wonders of the world.
Despite the wistful words, I'm sure it's the rare person who does not begin to plan certain aspects of their trip well in advance. Personality, risk-tolerance, and goals are all factors which guide people.
I've found a comfortable middle ground between no planning at all (which would mean I'd never “just do it” and leave home) and over planning (and getting stressed out in the details). Over the past 6 months, I've shared all my plans, so now it is time to share stuff I am proudly not planning:
- Airfare, especially RTW tickets
- Visas (specifically to ensure I take care of any difficult ones in advance of departure)
- Refining my daily per diem, per country (which were initially researched a year ago)
- Learning a new language
- Researching and/or committing to a volunteer program
- Earning a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certificate
- Planning absolutely anything (beyond countries to visit) in Africa, Europe, South/Central/North America
If you're currently planning a trip, what are you purposefully NOT planning in advance?