A round the world (RTW) trip is an opportunity to experience different cultures, see amazing landscapes and meet interesting people. Everyone has a different idea of what they want from traveling, whether it’s diving world class sites, trekking challenging trails or partying at famous carnivals! Planning a RTW trip can be daunting as well as exciting, decisions have to be made on destinations, how long to travel for, what to include and how to budget for everything.
The first step is to research airline tickets, many travel agents specialize in these trips, and it is often cheaper to book a round the world ticket with an airline alliance rather than book your tickets as you go. Most round the world tickets have a maximum of one years traveling time, and you must travel in one direction round the globe, you cannot backtrack. Starting and finishing in the same city is also a necessity, although you can change dates and sometimes destinations on other legs of your trip, incurring an extra charge. Although most RTW tickets include the option for some internal flights, it is usually cheaper to book these independently, as you are not restricted to the airlines in the alliance you can use low cost carriers.
Before you book you tickets, look into seasons in your chosen destinations and whether activities you want to do are available for your chosen dates. Although it is sometimes cheaper to travel in wet season, if you want to trek many paths can be closed due to treacherous conditions. On a trip of six months, if you choose to leave in the autumn, you can follow the sun through Asia, to arrive into the Australian summer!
Tickets are more economical if you fly in and out of main destinations, and the Europe, Asia, Australia, America route is a classic. Choose to visit more far-fetched destinations and you can expect costs to rise, but with research and careful planning you can still get to your dream destinations without blowing the budget. Traveling overland is a great way to see more of a country and gives you the flexibility to stay for longer on a paradise island you have found after chatting to another traveler at one of Thailand’s famous full moon parties, or fit in another stage of your PADI diver course on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
Do ensure you arrive in your designated city for your next pre-booked flight, as many airline alliances, if you don’t turn up for a flight, will cancel all subsequent legs of the journey and re-booking can be expensive.
Make sure you have:
• Adequate travel insurance to cover all the activities you want to do
• The right vaccinations for your destinations
• Copies of your insurance documents, passport and driving license
Once everything has been arranged let the excitement mount as you count down to all the amazing, unforgettable experiences you will have on a RTW trip!