Monday, April 12, 2010

0 Mailbag Monday: April 12, 2010

This week's questions are both from Breanna and Jake of Madison, WI who are planning their own six-month traveling honeymoon. We're so excited for them!

I'm worried about striking a balance between planning and over-planning. My natural tendency is to work out every connection beforehand, but I also don't want to set us up for a house of cards. How much of your route/transportation was planned beforehand? Heck, how many of your destinations were planned before? I think my biggest concern with overland travel is navigating local transportation, in another language, every leg of the route. It's daunting. How did you research local transportation?

The way our round the world ticket worked was that we had to book all 16 legs of the trip ahead of time, so where we flew in and out of was locked in. (We could, however, change dates of travel along the way.) So we knew, for instance, that we were flying in to Bangkok and out of Bali, but in between was open. We didn't book any travel between stops ahead of time. But we had done some very preliminary research about all the areas we would generally be to get a sense of what might be priorities to do and see. Most of our research was done while on the road, most often a day or two before we landed in a new city. We brought a netbook computer along on the trip and wifi was basically everywhere, so this was much easier than we even anticipated. (Highly recommended!) The language barrier was surprisingly not a big issue. There were a few communication mishaps, such as the one that led us to be stranded on that Brazilian island, but everything always worked out in the end :) I'd say don't worry about arranging local transportation on the fly.

We both have an unfailing wanderlust, but I'm still concerned about home sickness. Our travel so far has been limited to 2-3 week trips to Europe where the culture shock is minimal. Any advice there?

I think that overall moving around a lot kept us from being homesick, because there were always so many new things to see and experience. The constant novelty kept things fresh. But for keeping in touch, let me just say that Skype is amazing! To talk to and actually see your family is such a comfort. Again, the netbook computer was super handy for this. You could often find us on a street corner skyping halfway across the world.

You can send your own questions for the mailbag to

Don't forget to nominate a destination for our next trip!

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