parallax background


As I told you in a recent post, I’m a control freak to organize a trip when I have limited time to travel and I know it can be chaotic if we do not have a proper guide to pull it of. So I want to show you what I do, a method that has worked for me every time so I can have a trip with less complications.
1. First of all, you have to chose the country you’re interested in visiting according to your budget or economical capacity (it’s not the same to travel to Perú or Bolivia than travelling to Dubai). Then, you must chose a date and take in consideration how the weather is going to be in that time of the year (if you live in a tropical country as I do and you want to visit North or South in winter, you’ll have to buy propper clothing because in Costa Rica for example there isn’t snow or extreme cold). As an extra tip, you can check out if there are cultural activities, traditions or special rituals during the year to see if you’re able to accommodate your travel dates and enjoy the region in a deeper way.
2. Then you can investigate and choose cities you would like to visit, it doesn’t matter if they are in opposite areas, you decide later which ones you’re actually going to visit. Locate each place in google maps (it’s the tool I used to save the points of interest geographically).

3. We can measure the distances between the sites you marked (google maps is wonderful) and investigate the means of transportation for each route. This can be a bit complex if the country does not have efficient public transportation or an appropriate infrastructure. The best example is Bolivia, I did not find much information on the internet about buses or if there were trains, prices, schedules. Peru on the contrary, has a large number of companies that offer various routes and it is possible to purchase the tickets online. So for this part there is no recipe, just investigate and take the time to read. I usually check out travelers’ blogs with the most up-to-date entries to have a reference and in extreme cases I publish my question in the tripadvisor forum which is great.

After consulting a couple of companies for each route (I always compare flights, buses, trains and bla bla car if that were the case), I proceed to see reviews of each one and compare prices and schedules.
4. Once you solve the transportation vrs time / price, you can decide which places are best to visit according to the amount of days you have for travelling. I’ve had to leave behind the idea of visiting beautiful sites because I can not find a way to include them in the schedule. The good thing is that I have an excuse to return later. This is actually up to your personal interests, I can only advise to choose what you really want to see and consider the transportation available – schedules – with the amount of days you can stay.

5. Now, to choose accommodation, you can use couchsurfing if you go backpacking or with low budget or choose platforms like Booking (click on the link, and make a reservation so you can perhaps receive $15 of credit in your account for your accommodation), Hostel World or air bnb that are my favorites. You can use filters to see better locations, price, rating, among others. I thoroughly recommend reading the general info of each hostel / hotel and also you will find the opinions of travelers. I choose the hostel according to price-location or proximity to means of transport to move around.
6. Once you finished selecting the above, investigate if there are abysmal differences in terms of culture (it is not the same for a woman to travel in the Middle East or in any part of America), geography (La Paz in Bolivia is between 4008 msmn and 3625 msnm aprox, the height can affect you if you are not aclimatized),

gastronomy (if there are typical dishes that you can try, or if there’s potable water), climate (if it is winter for example, you’ll need appropriate clothing), activities (if you need special gear to make a tour, footwear).
If you want to go deeper into a culture or a country, read reviews of where the best local places to eat are, use couchsurfing to talk to local people, find free interesting activities to do: for example, in many parts of the world there are free city tours (especially in Europe) , you can check some here or you can search in google: free walking city tour and add the city you’re interested in visiting (although they are free, it is always nice to tip them, especially if you enjoy it). Look for special celebrations, interesting tours, artistic exhibitions, street art or performances, among others.

7. This is important: identify the most common scams in each country you visit. You can research over the internet about it. For example, I’ve read people using the same method for scams every time in some countries of South East Asia so now I know how to be careful when I go there. Also, you can look for insecure places to avoid.
For example, during an afternoon, outside Notre Dame’s Cathedral, I saw a guy holding a boy’s hand, he was making a bracelet with incredible agility around his wrist. The foreign young boy was confused and started telling him he didn’t want it but at that time, he’d already finished and demanded to receive 20 euros.

8. It is also good to look for exchange rates to have a reference on what you can expect when it comes to obtaining the local currency. You can check out the best currency converter apps I discovered.
9. Make a list of important things you need to buy or get for the trip. Remember that if you use cards abroad, the local bank can charge commissions when using ATMs and these may vary (check with your bank), and inform them about your trip so you don’t have problems using them.
10. I invite you to read my list of useful items to travel, things that we normally don’t think about carrying and are helpful for our comfort! (coming soon)


Photographer, aspiring film maker, dreamer, in love with the world!! Everything you want is on the other side of fear!!