Getting out of your usual environment and diving head on into a new one requires some forethought if you were to make the most out of your money, time and energy. After all, the opportunity to travel may not come to you as often, and even if it does, the opportunity to travel to a particular destination may only come once in a lifetime. Based on this premise, some “pre-assembly” is in order.
Assuming you have already built up your travel fund, where should you go? And once you have decided to head on to a certain destination, how should you draft your itinerary? Would it help if you “maximize” (read: cram) the time you are allotted or would it do you better to have some flexibility thrown in to your travel schedule?
Then of course there is the issue of how you should arrange for transport and accommodation prior to your departure. Would it be easier on your budget to book flights and rooms well ahead of your arrival, or should you decide on which airplane or room to hop onto next once you are already there?
Once you have the basics covered, you can then move on to planning for insurance, as unsavory as the task may seem. But perhaps nothing is more challenging pre-departure than packing for your impending journey. While making reservations for a place to stay and an airline to fly with is equally exhausting, at least those activities only entailed wrist movements. Packing is getting down to the grit of pre-departure, especially when you are trying to put together an entire week (or month) of your life in a bag or luggage no bigger than your actual closet.
After getting that out of the way, should you call pre-departure all set? Certainly. But it would help if you read up a bit on what to expect once you land to minimize embarrassment and maximize fitting in. Southeast Asian countries conduct themselves differently from those of the west, so an overview your destination’s customs and language should be as indispensable as your travel documents.
Travel planning, no matter how exhausting it may seem to you, is only getting half the work done. The other half is getting out there and enjoying your vacation like you would never come back.