Your international trip is an exciting adventure waiting to unfold. Whether you’re a seasoned globetrotter or planning your first international trip, proper planning is the key to a successful and memorable experience. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the essential steps to plan the trip of your dreams, from how to choose a destination all the way to the best ways to book accommodation. Follow this 7-step checklist to plan your next vacation abroad.
1) Choose your destination based on your interests
The first step in planning your international trip is perhaps the most exciting step: choosing your destination. If you struggle with the sheer volume of places to see in the world and you don’t know where to start, you’re not alone. As seasoned travelers, our advice for how to choose your holiday destination is to decide what kind of holiday you want. Are you longing for a nature-oriented escape, a bustling city break, an adventurous trek, a deep dive into a new culture, or one special place that encapsulates several of these qualities? Take some time to reflect on your interests, passions, and what you want to get out of your trip.
2) The details matter
Once you’ve settled on the kind of holiday you want, it’s time to delve into the details:
- Choose the right season: Consider the weather and climate of your chosen destination during your travel dates. Do you prefer sunny beaches or snow-covered landscapes? Make sure the season aligns with your preferences.
- Set a budget: Determine how much you’re willing to spend on your international adventure. Be realistic about your financial capabilities and plan your trip accordingly. Remember to account for flights, accommodation, meals, day tours, activities, and souvenirs.
- Select your mode of transportation: Decide on how you want to travel—by land, sea, air, or even a combination. Each mode of transportation offers a unique experience and has its own constraints, so choose what suits your preferences and schedule.
3) Decide between a package trip or independent travel
The next crucial decision in planning your international trip is whether to opt for a package tour, independent travel, or something in between. Let’s explore the benefits of each:
Benefits of Package Tours:
- Convenience: Package tours often include everything from accommodation to guided tours and meals, making your trip hassle-free.
- Expertise: You’ll have the advantage of local planners and guides who know the destination inside out, which is great for travelers who know where they want to travel to, but don’t know what to do when they get there.
- Group camaraderie: Joining a group tour can be a great way to meet like-minded travelers and make new friends.
Benefits of Independent Travel:
- Flexibility: Independent travel allows you to create your own itinerary and explore at your own pace.
- Authenticity: You have the freedom to immerse yourself in the local culture, interact with locals, and discover hidden gems.
- Personalization: Tailor your trip to your specific interests and preferences, making it a truly unique experience.
Something in the Middle:
If you’re looking for the security and benefits of a package tour while still having freedom and authentically experiencing the country you’re visiting, this custom trip builder is the tool for you. With the ability to decide on tours and cities based on the travel vibes you desire, the option to move around days, add multiple cities to one trip, and get expert recommendations on which hotel to book, planning an international trip is easier than ever before – and takes just three minutes to do! At the end of the journey builder, you’ll have the option to book everything on the spot, in one simple payment.
4) Organize a visa if needed and travel documents
Depending on your nationality and your chosen destination, you may require a visa. Research the visa requirements well in advance and ensure you have all the necessary travel documents, including your passport, travel insurance, and any permits or vaccinations required. Check out our visa advice for the following popular destinations: Jordan, Morocco, China, Vietnam, UAE, and India. Make sure to check any country’s official entry guidelines before you book your vacation.
5) Book your flights
With your destination and travel dates in mind, it’s time to book your flights. Be on the lookout for deals and discounts to make the most of your budget. Consider using flight comparison websites or consulting with travel agents to find the best options. Our top tip is to look at airports near your desired destination and consider taking transport to your final destination once you get there. Don’t be scared of taking multiple stops, and even booking with multiple airlines and doing self-transfers. While slightly more hassle, this can sometimes save you lots of money if you’re traveling on a tight budget.
6) Book your accommodation and tours
Now that your flights are sorted, it’s time to secure your accommodation and tours. When booking accommodation, it’s key to find the balance between budget, location, and amenities. A good tip is to look at a map and see how close the hotel is from the main attractions you’ll want to see, and then do a quick search on the neighborhood to check safety and transport options. Similarly for day tours, you’ll want to make sure the tour you choose is in the style you want and appropriate for you and your group.
The ‘Create My Journey‘ bookable itinerary trip builder is a game-changer in this step. This innovative tool helps you build a bookable personalized itinerary. Not only are the tours and activities automatically aligned with your interests, but the tool will recommend you hotels based on your budget and desired comfort level from a list of more than 3,000 curated hotels globally. It’s the ideal solution for savvy travelers who want the freedom of independent travel with the security and convenience of a pre-planned trip.
7) Pack your bags and enjoy your trip!
The final step is packing your bags and embarking on your international adventure. Make a checklist to ensure you have all the essentials, including your travel documents, clothing suitable for the climate, toiletries, and any specific items required for your activities.
As you set off on your journey, remember that the key to a successful international trip in 2024 lies in careful planning and thoughtful decision-making. Whether you choose a package tour, independent travel, or create a personalized bookable itinerary, Tourist Journey can help you plan the perfect international trip to your preferences and interests. So, go ahead, explore the world, and make unforgettable memories in 2024. Safe travels!