Need to Travel the World
Figuring out how to travel the world is no too easy feat, especially when you’re trying to do it on a budget or planning world travel with a family.
There are many factors to keep in mind when evaluating your trip, including what to do before leaving & your budget. To helping you get started, we’ve put together a guide on how to travel the world, including everything from how to start looking into your trip to how to save money once you’re abroad.
1. Get prepared
If you want to travel the world, there are some planning measures you want to take first to ensure you have durable luggage & the proper documents — a passport and possibly visas — & figuring out how much time off you’ll need.
2. Get your documents in order
Those in the Unites state will want an up-to-date driver’s license because by 1st october 2020, all US. residents traveling domestically must have identification compliant with the Real-ID Act, which increased security requirements for state drivers licenses and ID cards.
Residents in 24 states including Alaska, Maine, California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington have until Oct. 10, 2018 get a Real-ID compliant card, though states have the option to apply for exemptions through 1st October 2020 when the last phase of the Real-ID Act is enforced, meaning residents in those states should regularly check the status of their IDs before flying.
For travel outside of the United state, passport cards or trusted traveler cards can serve as documents at certain land and sea crossings. But you’ll want to make sure you have a passport book if there is any chance you might leave or enter another country via plane, where passport cards won’t work.
Already have a passport ?? You will want check if it is valid for at least six months after planned trips. That’s because some countries like Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and Russia make this a requirement for entering their countries. Renewing a passport takes at least six to eight weeks through the mail, but those with proof of international travel (like a flight itinerary) can get an expedited passport renewal for an additional 60$ to the 110$ fee & by visiting a passport center in person.
International travel could also require a visa depending on the location & duration of your trip. Some countries have agreements in place that allow travelers to enter & leave visa free. For example, the United state and Canada don’t require visas for travel (except in certain circumstances), & Europe’s 26 Schengen States have a system where a visa issued by one of the twenty six states typically allows travel throughout the others for up to 90 days.
To find out if your trip requires a visa, check your destination’s embassy or consulate website. Few countries will allow you to travel visa-free for a short stay. Others, like Lebanon, also allow citizens from destinations like the United state to get a visa upon arrival.
3. Get your vacation dates in order
Working while traveling can be tricky, but there are a few steps you can take that do not involve quitting your job to travel the world.
Start by saving vacation days, you work at a company that pays out for these dates. Those looking to trade in vacation days can also check out companies like PTO Exchange, which lets companies buy back unused vacation days so employees can convert these days into travel, health benefits or charity credits.
4. Speed up security wait times
Signing up for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry can help save you time when moving in and out of airports.
TSA PreCheck, which costs 85$ for a five year membership, allows you to speed through domestic airport security without having to remove your shoes, belt, liquids, laptop or light jackets. The service is currently available in 200 airports in the United state across 47 participating airlines.
Global Entry, which costs 100$ for 5 year membership will get you the same expedited screening through airport security as TSAPreCheck does, while also giving you the added benefit of expedited United state customs screenings through automated airport kiosks when arriving from an international destination.
5. Look for work on the road
If you leave your job to travel the world, there are few ways you can make money while abroad.
Companies like Up work allow people to find work almost anywhere, even while traveling, since it is open to freelancers across a wide range of fields that include video production, translation, programming, writing, designing & mobile development. Income will vary on the type of position & number of hours worked, but freelancers can often rack up hourly rates that go as high as 200$ per hour, according to Up work representatives.
You could also find a place to stay through companies like the Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WOOF), which offers housing at organic farms around the world in exchange for volunteering on the farm, doing everything from feeding livestock & watering gardens to harvesting fruit trees.
6. Get the right credit card
Having the best travel credit card for your trip can not only prevent foreign transaction fees, but also help you reap rewards & perks during your trip.
Some cards with travel benefits include the Chase Sapphire Reserve (450$ annual fee), which offers 300$ toward travel costs, 100$ toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, access to thousands of airport lounges, zero foreign transaction fees, and a 1:1 point transfer program towards top airline & hotel loyalty programs. The Bank of U.S. Travel Rewards no-fee card lets you easily cash points to use toward airline tickets, baggage, hotel stays, car rentals & cruise packages. The card offers unlimited points, with up to 1.5 points for every 1$ spent & “20,000” bonus points if you make at least 1000$ in purchases the first three months of opening your account.
When it comes to savings on hotels, the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card lets you earn 5 points for every dollar you spend at one of the company’s hotels, and two points at participating Marriott Rewards hotels.
7. Book travel far in advance
After all that preparation, you are ready to book your trip round-the-world, which will likely be a round-the-world plane ticket, a journey by sea, or a combination of flights and ground transportation.
Below is the details of how different travel options work:
8. Consider a round-the-world ticket
Round-the-world tickets allow you to buy a ticket and fly with various airlines under one alliance. But there are some regulations to keep in mind. Tickets are usually valid for up to one year, though flyers are required to start and end their trip in the same country through the following major alliances:
- Star Alliance (including Air Canada, Air New Zealand, Austrian, United, & Lufthansa) bases its round-the-world tickets on the number of miles, with levels of passes you can choose from based on mile increments. You can take up to 15 stopovers, but you will need to keep moving in the same direction as how you started your trip.
- OneWorld (including British Airways, American Airlines, Cathay Pacific & Qantas) has two different round-the-world ticket options. Its Global Explorer ticket is a mile or kilometer based option with four different mile increments to choose from, while the One World Explorer is based on the number of continents you visit, with up to four segments (flights) you can take in each of the 6 continents the alliance flies into.
- Skyteam’s (including Delta, Korean Air , Air France, AeroMexico) round-the-world option requires a minimum of two stops and runs for a year, with the alliance even offering theme-based trips, like beach to make planning your ticket a little easier.
Round-The-World tickets can cost maybe $2,000, and Dave Grossman, author or “MilesTalk: Live Your Wildest Travel Dreams Using Miles and Points,” recommends checking whether it’s cheaper to book a round-the-world trip by entering itinerary into Google Flights and comparing the overall price to those offered when building an itinerary out on the alliance websites.
You can also book round-the-world tickets through a travel agent or third-party sites like AirTreks of Flight Centre. These websites can be very cheaper because they often pull together individual airline tickets based on the lowest fares to create a round-the-world itinerary.
However, round-the-world ticket travelers should note: missing one leg of your ticket could cancel the rest of your trip, making it best for travelers who feel comfortable planning out a lengthy trip well in advance.
9. Take a world cruise
If you are looking to travel the world by sea, a world cruise can provide the flexibility to explore multiple continents, traveling from the United State to Europe for example, or to hone in on one continent. Itineraries vary by cruise & world cruises can be great for families, retirees or those who can be at sea for around three months.
Sometimes, cruise will offer to book only a segment of world cruise, which can range from two weeks to a month. To book a segment, prospective travel company will also have to add a one-way trip to or from the start or end of their journey.
The costs of world cruises can be anywhere from 13000 dollor to upwards of 40,000 dollor per person, as Cruise Critic points out.
10. Take a repositioning cruise
If you are looking to travel the world for low prices, consider a repositioning cruise, which take place when ships need to relocate from one place to another. The cruises can cost up to 50 dollar less per day than classic cruises and typically take place during shifting seasons like the fall and the spring.
11. Know when to book
Unfortunately, there is no special days before your trip that will get you the best deal on flights. But travel seekers can keep an eye out for regular flight sales on social media, where airlines will often announce hot sales. And there are certain travel apps and websites that will alert you when the price has gone down on flights you are interested in.
12. Avoid hidden travel and communication fees
Once you have started the trip, there are tips and tricks to help you travel each destination across the world on a low budget. Here are some best ways to reduce costs during your travel around the world:
13. Grab a city pass
City pass offerings are different as by location, but many will give you free or discounted admission to top attractions in a city, as well as fast track options to cut lines. Some passes, like the “Paris Pass”, also include free_transport throughout the city as well as admission to attractions. If you’re traveling in the US, you can check out the CityPASS network, which provides discounts on attractions across twelve North American cities.
14. Eliminate hidden hotel fees
To reduce hidden hotel fees (that is, after checking what hidden fees the hotel charges before you book), you can ask the hotel whether they can forego additional fees for amenities you don’t use, like the gym or in-room safe. The hotel should be able to remove these charges from your bill before you arrive.
If you are staying at an all inclusive property, you will want to look into the fine print and the “terms & conditions” of your stay. The reason for this is that some properties will charge high for items like champagne, high-end liquor or some activities. The easy way to spot these is by keeping your eye out for asterisks in promotions and advertisements.
15. Communicate for free
Communicating with friends and family while traveling is also important, but roaming charges & international calling fees can add up quickly.
Apps like WhatsApp, Skype & Viber which allow messaging and calling for free over Wi-Fi if you have an Android phone. You can also own a local SIM card, which you can purchase at airport vending machines and convenience stores. The Local SIM app can pinpoint the best local cellular carrier to grab your SIM card.