A Guide to Plan Your First Trip
Before you pack a truckload of clothes and barge out of your house to catch that flight, I beg you please read this article.
Decide a destination
Where you travel to will be the first step in planning your trip. If you are planning to travel with a partner, ensure you mutually agree to the destination(s).
Length of the trip
Whether you are planning to only one city or multiple cities, decide on the number of days you will spend there. For multiple locations, fix days for each location as you will need to book travel tickets and accommodation accordingly.
Research your costs. Every city is different. Other than hotel and flight tickets, your budget should include costs for food, public transit and local sightseeing at the bare minimum. A simple google search will tell you the average amount you should expect to spend on food and local transportation. If you are planning to rent a vehicle, check costs for that as well. For local sightseeing, the costs may vary depending on where you choose to visit.
Book your travel tickets
Booking tickets in advance has two advantages. First is the most obvious one: it helps you save money because flights are cheaper when booked in advance and trains are cheaper when not booked in tatkal. Second is you are more committed to taking that trip. Believe it or not: Work is never-ending. You won't think about cancelling last minute if you have already spent a fortune on the tickets. It also allows you time to plan your travel.
Book your accommodation
Talk to your travel buddies about the kind of accommodation you would want to live in. Will it be a luxury high-end resort or a budget hostel? Bookings fill up very quickly during the season and it is best to book in advance. Here are some popular options you can check.
This is the most budget-friendly option. Hostels are cheap and are brimming with youth-energy. Some hostels may restrict families, large groups or people above a certain age so check before you book.
Air BnB is your go-to platform if you are looking to find a local homestay. Staying with a local is a cultural experience unlike any other.
This website has the largest repository of hotels around the world both budget and luxury ones, plus you could book without an advance fee.
This one is a free option. Yes, you read that right. Couch surfing basically means a person offers their extra couch to a traveller to sleep on for free in exchange of a cultural experience. Couch surfing may not be for everyone as amenities may be a bare minimum here.
Plan your activities
Check travel forums and blogs to get information about the place you are visiting. Websites like TripAdvisor are good platforms to get your basics in place.
What to Pack!
Unless you want to lug your suitcase everywhere, which I am sure you don't, pack smart. Carry only the essentials. It helps to make a list of all the essentials you would need for the trip before you start packing.
You might want to consider investing in a good travel insurance pack especially if you are travelling internationally. Travel insurance usually covers for baggage loss, theft or emergency medical services. You may check World Nomads for buying insurance as per your needs.
This may not be valid for all travel locations but, it is a good idea to check if you would need to get vaccinated against any diseases that are prevalent in the country you are travelling to. For international travel, the Visa issuing authority usually has all the related information.
Have a lovely trip!