So you’re thinking of going travelling?
Whether you’ve just returned from your first time backpacking, or you’ve always wanted to visit a new place. The thought of travel is now bouncing off the walls of your mind, smashing the boring everyday concrete thoughts of ‘does he like me?’ ‘What shall I have for lunch?’ Replacing them with visions of blue skies, and filling you with hope of visiting a new place soon…
But when? But how?
You ask yourself, where do I start?
What do I do now?
A year ago I was in that position. I had just came back from an interrail trip which was masterminded by my friend the Candid Nomad, and I knew I didn’t know what I wanted to do after I graduated.
Masters? No thanks.
Become a teacher like I’d always planned? I wasn’t sure anymore.
I could travel after uni, I thought, but that seemed crazy.
Who does that? Especially from my generation of students. 50k of student debt on graduation – yikes.
But the more I thought about it, the more I realised that travelling was what I wanted to do, and became what I was going to do.
I still had no idea where to start. How do I plan a year long trip? People just seemed to do it, they decided where and when, they worked and then they went.
If this is where you’re at, you’re newly infected with the travel bug, and you’re hoping to travel in the very near future, whether it’s for the first time, on your own or with friends. This post is for you.
Deciding to travel in whatever form, mini-break or backpacking adventure, is one of the best things you can do, for yourself.
Now I’m not actually going to tell you how to plan your trip, where to go or what do now.
What do you mean?
Doesn’t this make the aim of your post completely pointless?
No, it doesn’t. As you will find out when you start researching travel, there are tons of resources telling you how to plan a trip or what to see and do at any given location. But none of them will decide what you want to do for you.
You quickly realise that you have to figure it out for yourself.
It’s on you.
That’s the point of this post, to highlight the fundamental truth that hits every traveller.
The journey you take before you go travelling, the daydream, the deicision, the planning, the booking. Up until the departure is the biggest adventure you’ll take.
It’s up to you to figure this out. From the very first time you think ‘I want to travel’, to when your trip begins and you’re there doing it.
Scary isn’t it?
But it’s okay, I’m writing this, for the newbies, to say hi! Welcome!
I know it’s scary, and you’d like me to tell you absolutely everything you need to do right now so that you can travel. But I can’t do that, you can.
You can do it!
Start small, make plans, look up places to see and things to do. Decide on a country and just keep thinking about it, I know it’s on your mind.
In fact let’s start with an equally scary question..
What do you want to do?
What do you want?
Start from there, figure it out from there.
I think the first thing I did when I started thinking about travelling was to follow every Australia travel Instagram. I even ordered a brochure for Ozintro, I didn’t even do Ozintro in the end!
I know it feels scary, exciting, daunting and massive when you first think about planning a trip. But it’s in your hands, you decide where and when you want to go, and how you’re going to get there. This is your time, and it will take time to finally get to a place where your plans become reality.
Every stage of deciding you want to travel and planning your trip is in itself a journey, and each one has its own reward.
Thinking “I want I travel” can mean so many different things…
I want to see the world
I want to take myself on an adventure
I want to leave my comfort zone
I want to prove to myself I can rely on myself
I want to do this more than I’m afraid of the risk and uncertainty that comes with travel
I want to do this, even though I have no idea how to do this
Some of these might apply to you, and if they do then you’re on the right track. It’s the beginning of a period of your life where you take your life into your own hands and make decisions for yourself. This is scary too, I’m still learning to do this on the road, its trial and error but at the end of the day, just do what feels right to you.
Take all the time you need, you’ll get there.
Honestly I envy you, you are at the beginning of a truly incredible experience.
(Bondi Beach, Australia- street art by Em Carey)
You’ve already taken the first step, you’ve thought about it, and thought about it some more. Pretty soon you’ll decide you’re going to do it, and one day you’ll be out there doing it.
We all have to start somewhere, and to be honest, most travellers have no idea what they’re doing at first. But we’ve all been right where you are now, thinking about travelling with no idea where to start or if we’re crazy enough to do it.
It won’t always be easy, but if you want it enough, you can make it happen. And when you do go travelling, it will be worth it.
I’m going to list below a few sites I found useful when I began thinking about going to Australia, in the hope that they help you too.
Keep thinking, work up to planning, and I’ll see you on the other side. I’m so excited for you!
Thank you for reading.
Helpful resources for the people who want actual help:
Mark Rambles On – has awesome practical advice and diary entries talking through planning a trip to Australia.
The Candid Nomad – candid advice, guides and realistic accounts of travel in Europe and South America.
Nomadic Unicorn – website and YouTube offering friendly and detailed advice and how tos on technical side of travel.
Psychotraveller – brilliant YouTube channel with excellent how to videos for planning, and reassurance videos.
Backpacking Bananas – another excellent YouTube videos with short straightforward advice on travelling to various different places and epic travel montages.
Thinking of travelling? Let me know how your plans are going in the comments, I’d love to hear from you!