What do I need to think about when planning a trip?

Travel Forums General Talk What do I need to think about when planning a trip?

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1. Posted by JamieRymer (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hey Everyone

Thought you could share some experience here, what do you think about when planning a trip?

2. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 1y 1 Star this if you like it!

Another hypothetical question?

Are you going on a trip yourself or working on a school project?

What do you think about when planning a trip?


Sometimes I wonder if my house will be broken into when I am gone for so long.

[ Edit: Edited on 18-Oct-2018, at 11:02 by karazyal ]

3. Posted by Beausoleil (Travel Guru 1311 posts) 1y 1 Star this if you like it!

What kind of a trip? DIfferent trips require different planning. If it's a day trip or a long weekend, taking clean undies and a camera are about all the planning we'll do. A small backpack will suffice.

On the other hand, a month or more in Europe requires a little forward thought. (1) First you have to decide when you are going to go and where. (2) When we have a general idea, we start looking at plane tickets and that continues until I'm happy with the price. (3) Plane tickets in hand, we start looking for accommodation. We stay a week to a month in a rental apartment or house, usually in the country so it takes a while to find exactly what we want. (4) When that's taken care of, we start looking at things to visit in the area or near the area. I usually make a list of things to do and each day, depending on the weather, we choose something from the list. We also ask for suggestions as we travel because local people usually have really good ideas for sightseeing, restaurants and activities. (5) If we're going to be out in the country, we lease a car. If we're going to be in cities, we don't bother and use public transportation so checking transport passes and prices ahead of time is a good idea.

(6) As far as clothes and things to take, that is not a problem since we take what we wear at home. If it gets colder than home (we live in California), we simply add layers. We each take a carry-on bag that we check and a small backpack that we carry on. Keep it light and keep it simple. The places we rent have washing machines so laundry is not a problem.

And most important, (7) we make sure our cat sitter is available to take care of our fuzzy little Mimi.

4. Posted by Dymphna (Full Member 205 posts) 1y 1 Star this if you like it!

One more thing to consider is ground transportation when you get there. Does the hotel you are staying at have a shuttle? Are you going to rent a car or rely on public transportation? What kind of public transportation is available?

5. Posted by Beausoleil (Travel Guru 1311 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

That would be #5 . . .

6. Posted by JamieRymer (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Thanks everyone for the advice and insight into your adventures. Some great detail Beausoleil, thanks! Karazyal I am not doing a school project, too old for school dude, I'm gaining insight from like-minded people.

7. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

For work or pleasure I have been traveling for over 40 years. Stuff can go wrong even back at home while you are away. You have some good info for normal stuff everyone figures out one way or another.

Some planning is not just sorting out hotels and best flights. For me, some of the things I do at home before leaving is important. Something as simple as stopping the mail. Nothing says no one home like a pile of unopened mail in your box! I live in a small town, the post office will hold mail for 30 days.

Back in the olden days before using computers was so popular I used to have a daily newspaper delivery. That stopped when I returned home and had a dozen or more holding my storm door open! (I had requested a stop and usually they comply but......!) You would figure the newspaper boy would think someone might have died at the house and notified his boss.

More stupid stuff to do at the house. Empty trash! Especially if bloody meat or fish wrappers, if not you will notice the first time you enter the house. My house has open fields not far away. In winter everyone sets mouse traps in garages, sheds and cellars. The little buggers only need a hole about the size of a US dime. If you are gone long and one of the traps catches a mouse - you will know it when you enter the cellar or shed. The old phrase "I smell a rat" comes to mind!

I shut my main water valve off before I lock up. We have freezing cold winters where I live, in winter if electricity goes off there is no furnace to keep a minimum heat going to keep water in pipes from freezing. So I shut my water off and drain the pipes. Five minutes of work can save hours of repairs and unnecessary expenses to clean up if the cellar floods.

Normal stuff for me is to notify my bank and credit unions that I will have their cards with me overseas and where. I don't want my CU or other card provider to assume ATM withdrawals suddenly coming from overseas are fraudulent. Some travelers never do this but I always do. Better safe than sorry.

I used to board a dog but I outlived him!

8. Posted by Beausoleil (Travel Guru 1311 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Interesting karazyal . . . except for notifying bank and credit card companies, our cat sitter takes care of all the other stuff you mentioned. Perhaps you should get a cat . . .

9. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 865 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

I live in a block of flats and my next door neighbour went overseas, didn't shut her water off, something broke and it started flooding my bedroom. The strata agent was reluctant to break into her flat without her consent, it took three days and my room was a pond I've always switched my mains off if I go for longer than a weekend away, not just for myself but for my neighbour on the otherside;)

Another thing I do for long trips is disconnect my car battery so it won't be flat when I return. Got that tip from a mechanic .

10. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

" Perhaps you should get a cat . . . "

If I could get one that would walk on a leash and ride in a car with his tongue out the window - might just do it! A hundred years ago when I was a kid we always had cats and a dog. Sometimes the cats (free roamers back then) would follow the dog who was following my father walking to work. This would really tick the old man off because he would have to return to the house to bring the cats in. The dog would follow my father to work, return home follow me to school, then return home and follow my brother to school starting an hour later. = Busy dog!


"for long trips is disconnect my car battery so it won't be flat..."

For me it would depend on how long the trip is. At car lots cars could sit idle for months before someone starts one. (I bought a cheap battery charger for "just in case" I do have a dud when I return.) For really long trips out of the country I might consider putting the car on blocks too.