Starting from scratch

Travel Forums Travel Companions Starting from scratch

1. Posted by Newbie92 (Budding Member 3 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

I’m a total newbie so need all the advice I can get :)

I’d like to start around Europe then go to Australia & New Zealand then maybe Thailand .
Or basically see as much of the world as I can until my money runs out
Open to options but would like some one to come on this journey with me
I would be looking to go around Feb/March 2019
Also, preferably not working travel until the end if we need to

Not sure where to start or plan this

2. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1207 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

Hi Hannah

I'm sure you'll get lots of advice; I'll start with a few bits.

Europe is easy - as a UK passport holder you can currently stay as long as you like in EU and EEA countries, and you shouldn't have any troubles with the other European countries re visas or length of stay.

Thailand is fun, alien, cheap, but they only give you 30 days. There are "visa run" dodges you can use to extend this, but the situation changes so read into it further if you plan to stay longer.

New Zealand is easy - as a Brit you walk in for 6 months at a time with no visa required. Australia is a little harder, they make you get an online Electronic Travel Authorisation in advance, it's free but only lasts 3 months.

You can only get a working holiday visa for each of NZ and Australia once so don't get them unless you need them. Again NZ make it easy, you can apply once there I believe, not sure about Australia.

Some places will want Proof Of Onward Travel (eg a flight ticket) or Proof Of Funds to show you can support yourself and aren't likely to start working illegally.

In all the places you've listed there is a thriving hostel and traveller scene so you will find plenty of people doing the same as you and you should make friends.

Some people like to take a tour on arrival into a country, as a way to get their bearings and make some friends. But this costs a bit more than doing it yourself.

Skyscanner is a useful site to plan your flights. Probably a Round The World ticket is not competitive these days for what you're planning - separate flights should work out cheaper.

Get backpacker insurance to ensure you have medical cover during your travels. Insurance for your gear is less important in my opinion, it's the medical that matters. I look on moneysavingexpert.com to start to find the best deals.

If you don't find someone to set out with you, you'll meet loads of people your age doing the same thing, particularly in Thailand, Aus and NZ.

When you think about how long to spend in each place, consider the weather and seasons. Europe's easy, the seasons are like home. Thailand has wet and dry seasons. Aus and NZ have their winter and summer reversed from us so hitting there in July would be midwinter - except some bits of Oz are more tropical so you're back to a wet season to avoid.

3. Posted by Andrew Mack (Respected Member 413 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

Quoting Newbie92

Also, preferably not working travel until the end if we need to
.
Not sure where to start or plan this

You can't work in Thailand (unless you're qualified at something they're short of) and need the appropriate visa to work in Auz and NZ.

Start researching as soon as possible (like now).
Europe does have the Brexit question mark at the moment, but it's highly unlikely to change to a situation where you'll need a visa, but it may affect you work options.

Research trains and bus tickets for Europe (I'm not sure if they still do the cheap inter-rail tickets).
Decide where you want to aim for first (say Barcelona or Lisbon or wherever) and where else are 'must see' places.
Do some research on the places, customs and Hostels (and which hostels are in the lively places).
Appreciate that some places are expensive (not as expensive as London generally... except Monaco... but the cost of a coffee in the wrong part of Paris or near St Marks square can make your eyes water) and budget accordingly.
Read blogs and watch YouTube Vlogs (there are loads of them).
Grab a backpackers guide (lonely Planet or Rough guide) which give generally good info although they do get 'out of date' quickly so they're a guide not the gospel.
If you're hostelling then you will meet other travellers who you get along with (unless you're very odd) and maybe you'll move onto the next place with them or maybe their next location is different, maybe you'll go to their destination next instead.
However although travelling together can get intense, which makes it feel like someone is a 100% trustworthy new best friend, some of them are only nice because they can get something from you. So don't dive in too quickly with someone you really haven't known long.

With a little common sense you'll have an awesome time.

[ Edit: Edited on 09-Oct-2018, at 10:45 by Andrew Mack ]

4. Posted by leics2 (Respected Member 403 posts) 1w Star this if you like it!

> Research trains and bus tickets for Europe (I'm not sure if they still do the cheap inter-rail tickets).

Inter-rail tickets are still available for European citizens (and Eurail tickets for non-Europeans) but neither are the budget options they once were. They do not guarantee you a seat on any train, they involve extra costs for seat reservation (which is compulsory on some trains) and France has a limit on how many passholders can travel on any one train. Nowadays it is often cheaper to buy point-to-point tickets as you travel, taking advantage of advance online discount tickets which are available for most high-speed European trains from the official railway website of the relevant country.

The official Interrail site is https://www.interrail.eu/en but it makes sense to check out probable fare totals before you decide to buy any sort of pass. Each European country has its own official railway website, almost always with an English language version, giving train times, details and..usually...fares. The few sites which do not give fares have very low fares indeed.

You can find the official railway website for any European country by googling the country name + 'official railway'. If you just want train times and details use the excellent official German railway website in English. It gives times and details for all European trains except a few private and commuter lines: https://www.bahn.com/en/view/index.shtml

For long-distance buses in Europe look first at https://www.eurolines.eu/ . In some countries there are other operators whose buses aren't part of the Eurolines network. Long-distance buses are almost always cheaper than trains but, in most cases, they take longer.

You absolutely must get travel health insurance. Brexit means UK citizens will need medical insurance for all EU countries. Check the health requirements for the countries you intend to visit now to make sure you get all the necessary jabs/malarial prophylaxis in place well before you set off. Be warned: most jabs won't be free and malarial prophylactics won't be free either.

Use this official site to check health requirements country-by-country:

https://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/home

Enjoy your research and planning. Doing some homework now will make a good trip into an excellent one! :-)

[ Edit: Edited on 09-Oct-2018, at 13:57 by leics2 ]