Planning

This post is also available in: Spanish

Talking about the destinations chosen for holidays is a recurring topic of conversation these days. I have friends who don´t know if they are going to travel somewhere, and other ones who have made their decisions months ago; I am in the last group. A trip requires planning unless you are one of those who prefers to buy a holiday package.

Every year my friends and I plan our summer trip, and the first step is to choose our destination. Many times, we do it randomly after some suggestions; but, after all,those places that offer a wide range of experiences, including a bit of adventure, are our preferred options.

The next step inorganizing our trip is to buy flight tickets, and it is very much linked to the dates we are going to travel on. Then, it is time to map out the route; it requires preparation and looking for information, reading travellers´ opinions and consulting travel guides. It seems to be the most difficult part because initially everything looks appealing; so, to choose we take into account the participants´ interests. Usually we mix cultural visits with excursions in nature; visits to museums, old ancient ruins and temples are mixed in with days of hiking, boat trips and camel rides, depending on the destination. Once the route is decided, looking for accommodation is easier; and though sometimes we elect to booka luxury hotel, clean and simple guesthouses are enough for us.

In relation to planning a trip, the budget is another important part; it is necessary to agree on a pre-defined budget accepted by all participants. The finances are more difficult to manage when there is more than one currency and each participant pays any expenses in advance. Fortunately, we found a template spreadsheet that has eased our task and has become our ally.

On a personal level, each traveller reads and learns about their preferred aspect of the trip. So, history of the country, handcrafts, famous people such as musicians or writers, traditional costumes and cuisine are examples of our interests.

This year, to plan our trip I have bought a famous travel guide. I must say it is very useful, however the letters are so tiny that it is a very uncomfortable read. After that I think that surfing the Internet, where you can find opinions and suggestions along with images, may be more useful than reading a book guide. In fact, the information is never organized as you would like it to be.

Dear reader, I have depicted broadly how we plan our trips, do you do it in the same way? Do you enjoy this activity as much as the travel itself? Or on the contrary, are you one of those who prefers to buy a holiday package?

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