Southeast Asia

Travel Forums Travel Companions Southeast Asia

1. Posted by Manuel Matos (First Time Poster 1 posts) 12w Star this if you like it!

Im a 21 year old student and im doing a gap year. I want to travel about 3 months to Southeast Asia, starting mid-january/beginning february. Im thinking of visiting Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Camboja, Malaysia and Singapore (all of them or just some). I would like to go with someone or even to form a group. Cheers!

2. Posted by Andrew Mack (Respected Member 513 posts) 12w Star this if you like it!

Thailand is the most travel friendly country in the world (IMO), and is the best starting place to travel the region.
Assuming you will be staying in Hostels, you will find others doing the same thing as you and will form a group without consciously making an effort to do so.
Do lots of research but don't plan too much as you'll want to change your plans to fit in with your new group.
I would recommend you buy a copy of one of the backpacker guides for the region (Lonely planet or Rough Guide or various other) and use it as a guide but not as gospel. They go 'out of date' quickly.
Search the blogs here, and on YouTube (there are many vloggers travelling the area).

Post 3 was removed by a moderator
4. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 2123 posts) 12w Star this if you like it!

"About 3 months" ..... "Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Camboja, Malaysia and Singapore (all of them or just some)."

If you have a definite departure date you can budget your money out easier. After paying for the major flights from your country to Asia and return home, remaining money available divided by number of days in Asia will give you a rough daily budget. (Not easy to work in Asia if you intended to augment your savings while on holiday. Sometimes not legal to work without proper documentation.)

Thailand is "visit friendly" and from there other countries are not too far away. Round trip to Bangkok MIGHT be cheaper than one way flights to Asia and one way flights home. Do the math on major flights from your home country to Asia and from there back home.) Singapore is a little more expensive than the other countries on your list. (Probably the most expensive in the world on some websites.)

http://www.asiatravel.com/thaimap.html

You have to research visas required for the countries you want to visit. Some countries like Thailand require a Tourist Visa you pay for ahead of time if you enter on a one way flight without another flight leaving within 30 days. (Proof of onward travel. Google it up.) Different countries - different visa requirements.

Calculate how much per day you will have for hotel, food, local transportation, tourist things and entertainment so you know where you stand. If you see that your daily spending means lousy accommodation and eating stuff you don't like - stay for less time and have more day today money available. You can always return again so there is no need to try to do everything all at one time.

Best chance for someone to travel with is someone from back home. Someone you can find later if he rips you off. Be careful of people who want to meet up with you. Always keep money, passport , computer and other valuables safely stored at your hotel so this stuff doesn't wander out the door with random friends.

You can have a nice time without meeting up with other people. You do meet some people in guest houses, on tours, in hostels and sometimes wandering around cities. Always be cautious so you don't end up broke.

Have more than one source of spending money. Do not rely on a single debit card for spending money. Have credit cards for emergencies that may come up. Maybe look into some sort of travel insurance good for medical and hospital care.

Good luck.

5. Posted by Andrew Mack (Respected Member 513 posts) 12w Star this if you like it!

Quoting karazyal

Be careful of people who want to meet up with you. Always keep money, passport , computer and other valuables safely stored at your hotel so this stuff doesn't wander out the door with random friends.

You can have a nice time without meeting up with other people. You do meet some people in guest houses, on tours, in hostels and sometimes wandering around cities. Always be cautious so you don't end up broke.

Good point.
Some people are just plain nice and want to help you because they're nice, but some are nice because they get some benefit from it eventually...
Some people from certain countries rarely buy drinks or food for a group but are always happy to accept a drink being paid by someone else.
In some cultures they'd buy a bottle of beer and share it around, but in others you buy each person a bottle...
It's just the way different cultures are.
Similarly some will have budgeted badly and will try to take advantage of other generosity to make their own money stretch further.
Travelling together seems to make friendships quickly, but don't trust your life (or money/documents/valuables) to someone you don't really know very well.