Spontaneous travel is rare these days, and it’s understandable really. The price of travel is already quite high and unless you book your room and flight months in advance, trips can get very costly, very fast!
Then again, spur-of-the-moment travel has a charm that can never really be matched by a planned trip. Sure, planned holidays are a lot cheaper and you have a clear understanding of your whole itinerary, but as far as delivering that true sense of adventure and thrill is concerned, unplanned trips are unmatched in that department.
To come upon an interesting location on the internet and plan for the trip months in advance is exciting, but to pack up your bags and head for it the very next weekend is a completely new experience altogether.
Although few people are brave enough to take impulsive trips these days, chances are that with the following eight tips in mind, you won’t regret it for one second, if you do decide to take one.
Don’t Go Alone On Your Very First Trip
Just because it is a spontaneous trip, it doesn’t necessarily mean you need to throw all the basic safety advice out of the window either.
If it is your first unplanned trip to a location you have never been to before, take a friend or two with you to make the trip safer, more enjoyable, and to create unique memories that will last a lifetime. This advice applies particularly to those who are going abroad for the unplanned holiday.
Check Your Passport Status First
When you are going outside the UK, you will, of course, need your passport, but going on that impulsive international trip will prove to be impossible if it has expired and you have completely forgotten to renew it. The same applies when the passport is missing or damaged beyond use.
If you are flying from a central airport such as Heathrow it can be ideal to use a London office.
The London Passport Office makes it possible to get an urgent passport renewal done in just 24-hours or less! By choosing the fast track passport option on the passports-office website and applying for a renewal or a replacement passport, you can book your appointment with the office immediately.
Do be aware of the fact that while the Passport Office London will issue a new urgent passport to British children below the age of 16, even if they have never had one before, this service doesn’t apply to adults.
Fast track passport delivery and appointment from the London Passport Office’s website can be booked for adults only if they have held a British passport in the past.
Given that we are talking about taking unexpected international trips here, it’s probably safe to assume that you already have a passport, but it is either missing, damaged, stolen or has expired. In such situations, the 1 Day Premium Delivery at the Passport Office London is just perfect to get it in time for the immediate trip.
Basic Research is Advised, but Too Much of it will Ruin the Experience
To advise someone that visiting a place outside the country, in an unknown location without any research whatsoever is an interesting suggestion, well, that would be extremely stupid!
Safety always takes precedence when it comes to international travel to unknown destinations, so a bit of research is definitely advised. On the other hand, if you start looking at long YouTube videos and travel blogs about that high mountaintop monastery in China, the trip won’t have the same surprise or thrill for you anymore.
Take the middle road and do your research, but don’t overdo it to the point where it almost starts to feel like you have actually been there before! It’s tempting to do so but resist that temptation and your enjoyment and adventure will be so much more fulfilling.
Make It a Short Trip
This is an important rule of the impromptu holiday and it should be maintained in order to have the best of experiences.
Long holidays need to be planned in advance, while sudden plans should almost always be short breaks.
When you plan things suddenly, expenses are almost always higher than a planned trip, which is why, the longer you stretch it, the more you end up spending. Not that anybody is saying it’s a problem for everyone, but for most of us, spontaneous trips should be short and sweet.
Have an Adventure, but Not without Guidance
Short, spur-of-the-moment trips should mostly be geared towards having an adventure, rather than seeing as many tourist spots as you possibly can squeeze into that little break. Then again, you are likely to be much safer in tourist hotspots without guidance than in the middle of a hiking trek, in one of America’s many National Parks.
If you do go for trekking, climbing or mountaineering, always seek a guide out, and do so with the help of the internet and travel apps. You can’t know who those smiling people outside the Suvarnabhumi Airport, claiming to be the best guides in Bangkok actually are, but travel apps have registered, verified and reviewed guides connected to them so that you can choose someone who has an actual reputation as a guide in the field.
Minding the Weather Forecast is Important Sometimes
This is one aspect of the impromptu trip that doesn’t necessarily have to be so unplanned, because you do not want to end up in the middle of a blizzard in Siberia, or a tornado in Texas, so do check up on the weather forecast before visiting any place.
In addition to the fact that you would be endangering your own safety and that of your friends, there would absolutely be no point in visiting a place for taking a break, where the population is in the middle of trying to survive a natural disaster or just staying inside to stop themselves from freezing to death!
Take a Risk by Doing Something New
As long as you are not taking a risk with extreme weather or planning to get lost in the vast wilderness without guidance, it is actually recommended that you take a risk on this impromptu trip of yours.
It doesn’t have to be a big risk, as long as it is able to thrill you out of your comfort zone. Go for a paragliding jump or try scuba diving. Anything that you have not tried before because you found it to be a risky venture will do fine.
Don’t Take Chances with the Food
Be careful with food when you go to a country that doesn’t speak English. There’s an instructor who jumps with you when you jump off a plane for paragliding or delve into the depths of the ocean for scuba diving, but nobody will likely be able to tell you that the luu moo soup you are trying is made from the organs of various dead animals, mixed in raw pig blood, that has killed a number of locals and tourists before, in addition to giving tapeworms to thousands of others.
Nothing can replace common sense really, not even preparation! If you keep these few points in mind and figure out the rest with your common sense along the way, this spontaneous trip could very well be the best trip you have ever taken in your life.