The thought of a trip around the world is for many people a dream come true, reveling in the idyllic waters of teal blue seas, minuscule fish nipping playfully at our toes. You sample gastronomic delights like Bolo de mel in Madeira watching the folk dancers, a vision in embroidered red and white, take their places to perform the Bailinho da Madeira, while vibrant blue and green parrots cock their heads thoughtfully. In Mexico you wander into a fragment from the past, Mayan Ruins pooling around your feet, the Chichen Itza standing proudly all these years later, you hear the whisper of a thousand dead souls through its stony walls. And who could forget the vivid lullaby of the Amazon Rainforest, red deer charging through leafy plains, jaguars prowling in the empty shadows? But alas you are jolted back to the present, the scent of mildew permeating the air, gloomy grey clouds pregnant with despair, tip tapping away at your laptop, 1,2,3. Well aware that your broke, barely travel educated and burdened with life’s many responsibilities could be an excuse that many of us use to not travel. In fact I myself am guilty of not being able to let go of my financial insecurities and following my heart, because I am well aware that the industry I work in as much as I love and adore it is A. not always financially viable B. does not provide me with the financial security that I need seeing as I live in London and C. can stress me out not knowing when my next pay cheque is coming in or whether I have enough money to pay the rent this month.
But travelling around the world doesn’t necessarily have to be as stressful as our minds make them out to be, as the anxiety spiders plague us with beliefs that we ‘can’t afford it’, ‘we will never have the money for it’ and other seeds of doubts. And while there are many travellers out there who claim that you don’t need money to travel (can’t say I entirely agree with that statement) at the same time it might be true that you don’t need to be rich to book a plane ticket and travel around the world stress free. In fact there has been times where I have boarded a plane with less than £100 to my name and I made it there and back just fine with minimal hiccups so I guess you could say that the proof in the pudding. Nevertheless a trip around the world is a different ball game entirely and takes a lot more cohesive planning than a spontaneous trip to an unknown destination, as you have to work out the costs of travelling before you even book your ticket. From choosing to spend more time in cheaper destinations like Thailand, to financing your travels before you leave here are some tips that will enable you to have a stress free trip around the world.
Plan, Plan Plan Ahead: Finance Your Travels Before You Begin Your Travels
It goes without saying that travelling around the world- whether you choose to backpack or stay in hotels- needs some level of financial support in order to finance your travels in a way that won’t have you pulling your hair out every five seconds. After all, I don’t know about you but as someone who has anxiety, the idea of ‘running out of money’ (which has happened to me many times) or having no money abroad fills me with dread, my stomach cramping up in knots at the very thought. And I am not alone, at a generalized guess the predominant reason why people don’t travel as much as they do is because of the costs it will incur. From stressing about booking your plane ticket to all the costs in between, the financial worry alone could be enough to stop you from following your dreams. But here’s the T, contrary to what our mind is telling us, there are many countries around the world that are cheaper to visit than you think, like Thailand, where you can not only get a 5* hotel for under $100 but you can also spend as little as $10 in Koh Adang, exploring the stunning waterfalls, snorkeling and indulging in a delicious Thai feast for as little as $8 on the island. Or why not check out the natural beauty of Vietnam, where you can also live on $30 a day, with a typical meal costing $0.50- $2, an ensuite room in modern hotels for as little as $10 and public transport for as little as $0.25 which is far cheaper than anywhere you would find in London I can tell you that now. So it makes sense that in order to cut down on travelling costs you should Spend More Time In Cheaper Countries To Save On Travelling Costs While You Are Travelling The World.
While choosing cheaper countries to travel to will be a good idea to save money, it is also wise to budget and draft up your travel costs before you even embark on your travels. From using price comparison websites like SkyScanner to book your flights at a cheaper cost, to booking around the world ticket between city destinations here are some tips on saving money while you travel the world.
- Book an around the world ticket-An around the world ticket is the most economical way to book your flights. It allows you to book various flights with different airlines within the same alliance, usually over a period as long as 12 months.You should also note that travelling to cities like London or LA is cheaper than Intrepid destinations, as the ticket prices are normally based on the distance covered or the number of places visited.
- Consider a quick loan to help finance your travels– quitting the 9-5 for a wondrous trip around the world would be a dream come true but for many of us who can’t afford to travel it can be scary learning how to finance your travels in advance. And while a budget and itinerary can help you to stay on track financially, worrying about every single thing you spend and feeling anxious when you spend money on something that was not accounted for previously can fill you with that same unwanted dread. Which is why short term loan lenders like Cash Lady can help you plan a stress free trip around the world, because they offer a quick loan that can be the difference between you following your heart and watching the world around you go past, as you remain glued to your office desk for one more day.
3. Check Your Budget Before You Travel- as much as you would like to stay in a stunning 5* hotel every night, chances are your budget will not accommodate those costs so it is important to look at your budget before you even book your ticket. It might be worth setting up a ‘cash jar’ to build up money over time or cutting out luxuries like subscriptions in order to save money for your travels. Not only should you work out how much you can afford to pay, but you also need to work out how long you are looking to travel for as that will help you work out how much money you actually need.
Create Rough Itineraries Detailing Key Attractions/ Restaurants/ Points Of Interest
Once you have worked out what your budget is and how much you can afford to spend a great way of keeping on track is by creating a rough itinerary detailing key attractions, restaurants, points of interest, accommodation and anything else that can help you plan a stress free trip around the world. The key is to only focus on places that you want to visit and are of interest to you, but please bear in mind that ‘tourist attractions’ will be more expensive, so it might be worth just choosing 1-3 attractions per country, with the rest of your itinerary focusing on ‘free or cheap things to do in that country that won’t break the bank. For example let’s take London as an example. While it is expensive to live in London, there are many free or cheap things you can do here without having to spend a penny, especially in summer months. You could start your day with a visit to ‘Spoons‘ where drinks can range from £1-4 and a breakfast plate can be between £3-7. Once you are refreshed and ready to head into town, why not begin with a trip to the British Museum which is completely free , bursting at the seams with enthralling artifacts from Egyptian Mummies to Anglo Saxon Burial treasures, with 80,000 objects on display. Or if museums are not your thing perhaps a visit to Greenwich Park might be the vista that your heart desires, where at the top of the hill you’ll see the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf juxtaposed with the 17th Century Queen’s House, as the Thames is visible in the distance. Or perhaps art is more of your cup of tea, with East London spots like Shoreditch, Brick Lane and Hoxton particularly notable for its stunning street art murals, most of which are free to view.
And it’s not just London which has free attractions either; at the ‘Temple of Heaven’ in Beijing you can see elderly locals practicing t’ai chi movements, while renting a bike and visiting Nanluoguxiang before seven will show you life after dark, where everything from opera singing, erhu playing, calligraphy practice and even ballroom dancing practice can be seen without having to spend a single penny. In Paris you could visit the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris for free sampling the wonders of modern contemporary art with its pastiche of art deco frniture, artist ceramics and strong cubism portfolio, while the Jardin du Luxembourg is a hive of activity, with pony roads, swingboats, sandpits, playground, tennis courts, chess players and round pounds with rented toy boats. Who said that people watching was boring hey? Or why not add a splash of colour to your stress free trip around the world in Burano, where the gloriously bright houses in shades of red, blue, yellow and pink will put a smile on your face without needing to reach for your wallet.
Always Put Your Safety First, Do Your Research
It goes without saying that you should put your safety first and foremost, especially in an unknown destination which you have never been to before. Take some time to research your journey thoroughly before your trip, taking care to be friendly with strangers but not overly trusting, keeping valuables hidden and away from the public eye-whether that be your phone, camera or money and having emergency contacts to hand in case of any security emergencies just in case. It is always important to be prepared and as someone who has been robbed before, I can’t stress enough how important it is to always keep your eye on your belongings, as even if you turn away for a second that can be enough time for someone to take your things. Believe me I should know. You should also observe the dress codes of countries that you visit, particularly in Middle Eastern or Muslim countries where a certain code of conduct is required when it comes to the way women dress. Even if you are not affiliated with that particular religion I always think that you should be respectful in any country that you visit, so if they require you to wear longer items of clothing, then it would be safe to blend in like a local and keep arms and legs covered. While I can’t say that I agree with codes and regulations that determine the way you dress because I believe we should all have the freedom to choose at the same time when travelling we should be respectful of people’s beliefs. But how does the way you dress have anything to do with safety? Well when you observe how the locals dress you can blend in as opposed to standing out, making you less noticeable to pick pockets or anyone else who looks for vulnerable tourists to exploit.
Other Key Safety Tips
- Don’t trust people too quickly- it is in our innate nature to be friendly, open and want to make new friends, but when travelling abroad, it can be very easy to encounter con artists who are adept at befriending travellers. Always make sure that your valuables are never unattended and that you don’t give them any vital information that can put your security at risk.
- Watch your alcohol intake- it can all be too easy to get super drunk in your home town, but when it comes to drinking abroad be very carefully about how much you consume, as alcohol dulls your senses and slows your reaction time which can make you vulnerable to others. Drink slowly, pace yourself and have a glass of water between drinks. To avoid drinks being spiked order directly from the bartender, resist social pressures to keep up with others who might be able to drink more than you and be aware of how much control you are in after each drink. Work out your limit.
- Always have a backup plan- in the event that your security is breached, always prepare for the worst with documents and secret cash. For example keep copies of your passport, keep front and back end copies of your cards on Google Docs and keep a backup cash stash inside your luggage in a hidden location i.e inside a secret pocket or sock in the event of emergencies.
What Are Your Tips For A Stress Free Trip Abroad?
Please note this is a collaborative post but all thoughts and research are my own and are not affected by monetary compensation.