With the prices of international travelling soaring, people are more likely to choose backpacking for a way of seeing some exotic areas like South America. Furthermore, more people are travelling alone, so they see this method of travel as a way to make friends.
If you have never been backpacking before, then you might not know what you are getting yourself in for. There is nothing to be afraid of but there are some things that you must do before you go, to make sure that you are properly prepared.
If you have friends that have been backpacking before, then you should be able to ask them for some tips and some honest opinions of backpacking as a method of travel. But, if you don't know anyone, then you might feel a bit apprehensive about starting your, sometimes, life changing journey.
If you are planning a backpacking trip and you have no idea where to start, then read on and you will finish this article feeling like you have a sense of accomplishment and knowing exactly where to get started.
It makes sense that everyone should start with their backpack. Now, you will need a large backpack to keep your clothes and everything else that you might need in. This should be a bag that feels comfortable on your back and you can wear it for long periods of time.
If you buy a bag that feels comfortable in the store, but then doesn't feel good when you get it home and have packed some stuff in it, then keep the receipt and just take it back. Tell the sales assistant that you are looking for something to travel with and they should show you to something more suitable.
Some people think that they only need one bag and then they are set. Wrong. Your main backpack is for travelling from destination to destination. It should be left in the hostel when you are sightseeing. This is where the second bag comes in. You should plan to take a second, smaller backpack, which you can take out with you from day to day. You are not going to want to carry a massive backpack with you when you are walking around and seeing everything that you have planned.
A lot of people make the mistake of not planning out a budget for their day to day spends. Most people, who run out of money towards the end, will have over spent at the beginning of their trip, due to the excitement of being on holiday. Therefore, it is very important to make out a plan for how much you are going to spend on food, drink and general travel expenses.
You can always save money by shopping for groceries and making packed lunches, instead of eating out all the time. Plus, if you do run out of money, you can always find bar work for a few hours a day, to make that little bit extra that you might need.
If you can't find a job, you can ask the hostel if you can work off some of your bill. Being able to do this depends on the hostel. Some hostels will allow this but don't expect this from hostels in big cities.
Take the bus
Don't try and fly everywhere during your travels as this will cost a lot of money. It is a lot cheaper to take the bus and have a rest during the journey. If you have a bit of extra money on the way back, then you can treat yourself to a few flights, but you should be aiming for buses and even trains.