My upcoming foray to five southeast Asian countries comprise of a 13-day period. In 2012, I have also found my itchy feet exploring three countries namely Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand within ten moon nights.I feel a different kind of thrill when I embark on a travels lasting at least more than seven days. Perhaps it is the idea of being away from the usual daily grind you are familiar with or the thrill of planning from booking seat sales during ungodly hours to scouting for hotels to checking places of interest. But the best thought is the possibility of taking long train rides or going into another country over land.
One thing I am sure is that longer travels excite me more. So my friends ask how do I plan for such travels. Let me share to you some tips I have learned from my own and some of my travel buddies’ experiences.
|Bound for Bangalore, India|
Where Do You Wanna Go?
This should be an easy one if you are traveling solo. Travel bloggers and Googlemaps make this task easy for you. I prefer going to a new place I have not visited yet. Or if I do go to the same area, I check out other places of interest I have not seen in my prior trip.
Marx: Paulaaaaa, there is a seat sale at 00:00 hours!
I am so lucky to have a good friend in the person of Marxtermind because I am regularly bombarded with PMs and text messages alerting me when is the next big air seat sale! 😀 Thank you always Marx!
If you are not yet good friends with Marx, then I suggest signing up to airlines’ e-mail alerts or like their Facebook pages.
Lastly, be friends with a certified wanderer. Chances are high that he or she knows when the next promo will go live on the internet. Of course, that last bit is more on the 50-50 serious side only. 😉
Alarm at 12 Midnight
In my observation, most seat sales (or perhaps all) happen at the strike of 12 midnight. So if you are out for a party, be a Cinderella for a night and make sure you are hooked on the internet before the servers go haywire.
Before going to the battle, make sure you already know your itinerary because deciding during the sale itself will make you lose those precious tickets to someone else. Shopping on site is definitely not advisable unless you are the I-don’t-know-where-I-am-really-going-I-will-just-book-whatever-is-on-sale type of traveler.
Research, Research, Research
I do like reading because I believe in the saying that knowledge is power. True enough, when I am in charge of doing the itinerary, I have the power to play Maleficent and think of leaving my friend behind in the middle of nowhere *evil laugh, lol*. I am just kidding!
After I purchased my plane tickets, which I think is the hardest part of air travel planning, I find time reading on what’s best to do in a certain place.
|I carefully researched what I should wear when I visited India
I research on the history of the place I intend to set foot on. Why? It is important for me that I feel a connection to the place so that when I am actually there, I am able to see it in a new perspective. When I know its origin or its contribution or significance to the community, I develop a deep sense of appreciation for the people in it. In return I get to love my birth country more.
*Intended for planning trips involving air travels.