How To Plan A Backpacking Trip


Want to know how to plan a backpacking trip? Then look no further.

This video will take you through the planning process from start to finish, so that you can set off on your own adventure!

0:18 Planning a trip vs being spontaneous
1:20 How do you plan for the unpredictable
1:48 Travel agencies
2:26 How do you plan a trip?
5:01 Using travel blogs
5:31 How much time do I need?
6:21 How do I travel from one place to another?
6:54 Travelling by train
7:34 When do you book flights?
8:13 Round The World tickets
8:31 Booking accommodation
9:23 Budgeting your trip

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——————— About Karl Watson ———————

My name’s Karl, welcome to my channel that’s all about sharing my backpacking adventures from around the world, through fun, entertaining and honest travel documentaries.

Through these films I want you – the audience – to escape and come on the journey with me, and then be inspired to start an adventure of your own.

In between my travels I’m based in London, UK where I work as a freelance video editor.

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#KarlWatson #traveltips
alright guys welcome to the second travel QA video how to plan your backpacking adventure thanks for sending in all your questions all your comments for last week last week I just got back from a trip and a bit more rested now so hopefully I don't look quite as tired because last time a few people commented going oh hey Carl I love you videos but you look like so cheers for that but anyway planning your trip now the first question has really come in by a few people such as Ben Victor family and Ian is the whole planning versus spontaneous so there is an argument for just booking a ticket showing up somewhere and seeing what happens and that's great that can work if you've got a lot of time and money to play with as well I can work out well by the owners fault plan your trip is that it can really help you make the most of your time washed your way so you don't spend any time research of things washed on the road you just enjoying your adventure and it can really help you budget for it trips you know how much you need to save up and also can help you not miss out and the best things because you didn't find out about it beforehand now where I sort of sit on the spectrum from spontaneous the planning is I like to come up for a plan for my trip but then as soon as you land you can throw that plan out the window you don't have to go with it I just use it as a guide like I've got a plan this is a version of the trip I could do that covers of things I want to do but if I get there and see something different whatever I can go off in that direction on that this is just it's just a guide that's it so you don't have to stick to it then the budgeteers have asked how do you plan for your predictable lie how do you make time for the spontaneity on your trip so the way I did that like with the backpackers the Caribbean trip was we had four things we wanted to do de San Blas the Lost City trail Angel Falls and Romania mountain and we could have squeezed those four things into three or four weeks but we gave ourselves 7 weeks so that in between that we could just go with the flow and do whatever we wanted to do wherein we ended mostly just getting drunk by the pool but still we could have done other stuff so how do you actually begin to plan a trip well I'll get into doing it all by itself in a second but if you haven't got a clue where to start you can always just go into a travel agency you don't have to book something straight away who's going and chat to them and since I freelance with them I feel obliged to mention Sta travel but I've worked with sa trouble about a year but I've been a customer of theirs for years we've all amazed k2 and wine with them and that's what their job is that's what they're there for their travel experts to give you advice and go and have a and they can sort of get you tired on where you might want to go or things you want to do what you got to save up for and then maybe come back a few months later and actually book it once you've got the money together for the sake of balance there are other travel agencies available they're just not as good now so how do you plan a trip by yourself I've got pilot April and Ricky all asking about planning a trip in Southeast Asia and other places like how do you figure out your route where to go well here's what I do I go to the tour company websites like G Adventures can take E straight Q experience whoever you go to their website and steal their itineraries that's what I do because these guys have made a living out of taking people around these places to the best places they've already got the best routes figured out so you just go on their website and steal their ideas that's what I do so for money to your ventures website I want to go to Southeast Asia I can search Indochina and bang all these routes come up now you might go on the website see a tour go that looks perfect and just book that and that's your job done gone on a tour of it's not on a tours like a whole separate discussion really because it all just depends on where you're going how long for what you want to get out the trip who you're travelling with things like that sometimes I use tools sometimes I don't I mean I've travel with G adventures a few times or trouble with Contiki Kiwi experience and they've all been absolutely brilliant so it just depends what you're after but for now let's say you're not going to book the tour how look at their itinerary so here you've got the Indochina Discovery and you'll see the route around Southeast Asia regards all the main places so from there you can start actually coming up with an itinerary of what you want to do now keep in mind these tours you go at a very fast pace just bang bang back one place after no they're doing the main things so if you can just take what schedule they have and just double it or more you know there are some places you'll go to and you only need a couple of days that's all there is to do there but other places you might get there and really enjoy the vibe end up spending a week or two it just it just varies so you'll be on the website and you might be looking at this map and it's route you don't know what these places are what there is to do there so Chiang Mai what's there to do there well go onto wikitravel put in Chiang Mai and it comes up with everything you need to know like tell us about the place the climate what time of year to go best way to get there there's a list of things to see and there's a list of things to do and you might scroll down you'll see flight of the Gibbon and you might think isn't that the zipline thing that James and Carl did on HK to my in Thailand yes it is so Google flight of Gibbon go to their website and then you'll see how much it cost three thousand nine nine nine five okay how much is that go on to XC calm all right it's 87 pounds stick that in your budget and that's how you can start building up a budget is just figuring out the places you want to go to and what there is to do there because the thing that can really screw up your budget is all these expensive activities so by doing a bit of research of them you can figure out how much you to save up and so when you get these places you can actually do the things that you want to do so that's one way to get started another thing you can do I mean I've got this question here from art John I think that's how you pronounce your name a I'm sorry if it's wrong but uh you'd say no I haven't done any planning for where I'm gonna go and Philippines next year and one of the things you can do is google travel blogs on these places if I put in a Google like top ten things to do in Philippines or you know two-week itinerary and Philippines all these blogs will come up and you can get ideas from there as well and scroll down to go oh cool those rice fields look cool where's that alright sick that look you travel and go from there I often get asked like how much time do you need in each place like canons asking or how much time to spend in Southeast Asia is playing on nine months is that too much in it it just depends what you want to do really I mean I always say if you got a longer trip there's two kind of trips you can do you can either just stick to one area and really get to know it or you can go visit a lot of areas moving around a lot just try and soak in as much as possible so 2006 when I first went backpacking I spent most of the time a new zealand but i worked there and traveled around and really got to know the country and then when we did hk2 my we did loads of places and move quite fast but yeah like I said just try and soak up as much as possible so for nine months in Southeast Asian travel round everywhere you can like get off the beam track see so many different sites and places but also just really take your time relax and you know really get stuck in with the continents so yeah now getting around you've got this list of places but how do you get from A to B I mean I've got Carl asking about this big trip around Europe and how is he going to get around well a great website to use is called Rome to Rio you can make you just put in one place and another and I'll give you a list of all different ways you can from one together whether it's by car train bus plane whatever and I'll give you a list of times and it's a rough estimate of costs so that's a really useful website for sort of figuring out how much time you need for traveling from A to B and also how much it's going to cost so again this helps you have with your budgeting for your trip then also Sandra is asking me about vice for train tickets in Italy and I don't know the answer to your question Sandra but if I was going to find it out the website would use is called the man in seat 61 so it's C 61 comm and this has information about traveling by train in every country in the world this so useless website there's so much information I use this for my India trip in January like the north part my india trip i pre booked all my trains through an english company to save me the hassle on the trip I don't want to found out like this little company that wasn't Percy 61 and it made my trip so much ease in the north of India so that website is a goldmine just definitely check it out now flights Dexter it's definitely when do I booked my flights how far in advance and the answer is I try and book them as soon as possible because a closer you get to your leaving date the more the prices go up so as soon as I know I'm definitely going away I'll book the flights now I'll look on the sky scanner to get a rough idea of the prices and try and find the cheapest ones but if I'm doing a big flight to the other side of the world or around the world ticket or whatever I'm not going to use one of their cheap travel companies they recommend because sometimes like customer service is just terrible so I'd rather go with a company I know and trust for a big ticket than spending a lot of money on so I like to go to Expedia or Adeste travel again to book it and then round-the-world tickets Liam's asking were we happy with our round-the-world ticket or what we have preferred more freedom of not being tired tonight Henry well actually we did have freedom because we booked it with SD a travel and they have a multi flex ticket where you can change the dates of your flights without being charged so we weren't stuck to anything really so now you've got your route planned you've got an idea of how you're getting it from one place to another and you've got your flight soit but what about accommodation now sissy asks like where do I stay what kind of accommodation to always stay in and the answer is hostels I always say the best thing about travels meet new people and hostels the best place to do that Plus most hostels emma traveled so you can book your day activities through them you might organize things in the evening you can book your onward travel so if you get yourself at a good hostel they can sort you right out now mark and Chris boy 120 have asked about booking accommodation in advance like so I put all my hostels before I leave what I've just booked the one at the start and the answer is a book the one at the start and that's it like I said earlier your plan is just a guide you don't want to be stuck to that and have everything booked before you go so just book your first hostel and go from there now have done another video on finding the best hostels booking them and budgeting for them so check that out for some more tips as well finally budgeting you mean Andy asked budget budget budget where you start and I've touched on a little bit already but my basic rule of thumb is try and have a grand or $1500 spending money per month that's a good yardstick to use I mean that you buy fine in like Asia and South America westernized countries a bit more expensive so you might need a bit more but the process I've gone through planning out your route and how to get from one place to another and things like that you can actually come up with a very detailed budget but if you can't be bothered with that just find out what your flights are figure out which activities you want to do because I can really eat up your budget and then just think yeah roughly a grand a month that should get you by alright and that's about it so hopefully I've give you enough information here to get you started on playing your own adventure next week the videos will be all about packing for your trip so send through all your questions about packing like what size backpack to take what centrioles to bring wipes to you bags to your day hostels send all those in I'll try and cover all those next week in the video but for now I've got to get on with editing India Oh

40 thoughts on “How To Plan A Backpacking Trip”

  1. This video will take you through the entire planning process. Here's the different sections of the video if you want to skip to a certain topic:

    0:18 Planning a trip vs being spontaneous
    1:20 How do you plan for the unpredictable
    1:48 Travel agencies
    2:26 How do you plan a trip?
    5:01 Using travel blogs
    5:31 How much time do I need?
    6:21 How do I travel from one place to another?
    6:54 Travelling by train
    7:34 When do you book flights?
    8:13 Round The World tickets
    8:31 Booking accommodation
    9:23 Budgeting your trip

  2. Also consider the fruit/food seasons; there are limited times where unforgettable selections of fruits/food are in season. For example: May and June for Mango, where you get huge selections of different varieties of mangoes that can never be had at other times….especially since most of the lesser known varieties are in backward places with little preservation technology….and no matter how good the technology might be, it can never duplicate the taste of freshly picked ones.

  3. Hey Karl, awesome helpful video as always! One question.. when you went to NZ first time round,. did you work there for a few months? If so, what was the process like of finding a job? Cheers ! 🙂

  4. Karl, what would you do about day activities, where do you find whats going on? Is there a website? I watched all your series and loved them all. Great inspiration for other travellers!

  5. Got to say best blog I've ever watched on travelling so much great info, I'm off travelling again in Feb to South America at the ripe old age of 44 some 12 years since my last round the world trip, I can't wait

  6. Do you have an international medical insurance or do you pay as it happens?  If so how much money should we budget for those events?  In Thailand I had a fall that broke a few bones and I landed in their hospital for 2 weeks.  My medical insurance (Blue Shields & Blue Cross) didn't cover me there.  Well they reimbursed me some of it but what do you do for medical coverage?

  7. What would you recommend if I wanted to travel in Europe from winter into spring? Like are there places that are better to go in winter and better to go during spring?

  8. Good tips !! however in case of India one may backfire. Booking domestic flights in India too early, may not advised. For travel in Aug to Sep , July you will get Sale for flight ticket. same for mid Jan to March end , you will get discounts in December end. Best options download travel websites app. eg Makemytrip, goibibo , Yatra etc and turn on notification. and book as soon as SALE notification are in your mobile

  9. Thanks a lot for such an awsm web-series. Looking ahead to share my travel experiences just like that. Your Grand Circle trip was very useful during my travel in US. really inspired by your 9 month Road trip – looking ahead for having one such trip with my gf. Eagerly awaiting to see your roadtrip doc. to India. Keep it going dude. Keep sharing the good itineraries.

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