How to independently plan an unforgettable vacation without the involvement of travel agencies
In order to spend an unforgettable vacation in any country in the world, it is not at all necessary to contact a tour operator or an agency – any independent trip will be many times more interesting than a “package trip”. Passion.ru talked to experienced travelers and found out the basic principles, following which you can get the most out of your trip.
Why and where are you going?
This is perhaps the main point, having decided with which you can plan everything else. Answer your question, what exactly attracts you: cities and museums, nature reserves and parks, shopping and entertainment, local delicacies and culinary traditions. Or do you even dream of a “vegetable” vacation and plan to spend the next two weeks on some exotic beach that only locals know about? All this will help you determine the key points and get the most out of your travel experience.
Check the calendar
One of the main points that many tourists forget about, but in vain. For example, you decide to go to a hot country and have a good rest on the beach, but at this time there is still the rainy season, so it is likely to spend most of your vacation in hotels, museums or bars. In addition, it may turn out that the sea has not warmed up yet, and the reserves are closed, and there are not so many people in the city, so there is nothing special to do there. Therefore, find out in advance about the climate of the country, about the work schedule of the institutions and about the upcoming national holidays (so that it doesn’t happen that you flew to rest and got to some kind of noisy celebration, like a carnival).
Gather country information and draw up an action plan
Even if you choose a destination that you visited before, it will not be out of place to find out what has changed in the country since your last stay, what laws have been introduced for tourists (sometimes this happens, what was allowed earlier is now banned) what new places have opened and so on. After all, perhaps you used to be traveling and did not have time to learn everything properly. Therefore, so that this time the rest does not turn out to be crumpled, it is better to learn and prepare everything in advance. And if you have chosen a country where you have never been before, then you should start by studying (or even buying) a guidebook and determining the main places that you would definitely like to visit.
Next, you should clarify the program (for example, how many vacation days you have planned, how many of them you are willing to spend on architecture and museums, what you plan to do in the remaining time, what your arrival and departure cities will be, and so on). In addition, it will not be out of place to clarify whether the season is there now, otherwise you will have to adjust your route, excluding those places where it will be difficult to get due to weather conditions.
Take care of the overnight stay and vehicles
Decide what you want to do – check into a hotel and forget about some domestic issues for a couple of weeks, or feel, even for a while, a resident of the country where you are going to go? If you value comfort, then you better choose the first option and look at several hotels until you study all the reviews and understand which one suits you best. If you want to fully experience the culture and traditions of the country, then it will be much more appropriate to book an apartment and decide all domestic issues on your own. Each of these options is interesting in its own way and allows you to see one or another city from different angles. In addition, think about how you plan to move around – on foot, by public transport, by taxi, or even rent a car? It is better to clarify all these points in advance.
Schedule a route by day
If you have decided on the direction and main points of your route, then you need to draw up a clear program of action, including including on the map all places of your deployment. At the same time, calculate how much time you will need to get from one point to another, check the schedule of buses or trains so that it does not happen that you missed one single transport and the other option is only the next day (and you have everything planned out and there is no way to linger in one place or another). Therefore, in advance, clarify all the details and do not forget about the time difference (otherwise you never know what embarrassment can happen). So you can figure out how much time you will have for each specific place and adjust your route if necessary.
Calculate your travel budget
It is clear that in your head you can imagine anything you want, but you need to compare what you want with the real and figure out whether you have enough budget for vacation-dreams? Start by writing down the main expenses (tickets, visas, travel expenses, meals, accommodation, medical insurance, tourist tax, etc.), and then add the additional expenses here (visiting museums and concerts, shopping, etc.).