A deadline is negative inspiration. Still, it's better than no inspiration at all.

~Rita Mae Brown
Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events, not of words. Trust movement.

~Alfred Adler


On The Bedside Table
  • NOS4A2
    by Joe Hill
My Now
Old Writey Bits
My Thanks
Matt Fitzhardinge - Alaskan dogsledding header picture


**Insurance Companies - The Ones That Passed First Round

Travel Guard

(Vanessa II) Endsleigh

(Vanessa's)  Trailfinders

Global Care


Travel Insurance Now

Access America

**Check with each of them about restricted countries.

**Possibly skip trip cancellation?


Things to Find Out About Each Country

  • do any of them require an AIDs test certificate before entering?

  • what is the amount required in your bank account per month of stay?

  • how much are the airport departure taxes and can they be paid in $US?

  • are there any currency exchange requirements ie: when you get there, do you have to immediately get/prove that you have a certain amount of local currency?


Suggested To-Do Timeline

4 to 6 months before

  • make basic decisions about destination, length of trip

  • brainstorm housing options

  • consider job options

  • cut expenses, save all money

  • start language study
  • \

3 months before

  • apply for credit cards, before leaving job

  • apply for passport, request extra pages for extended travel

  • get full medical exam

  • get remaining immunizations

  • get dental work done

  • purchase camera

  • research plane fares, watch for sales

2 months before

  • make car arrangements

  • research health / travel insurance

  • purchase backpack

  • start assembling clothing & supplies

  • make dietary adjustments

  • start sorting & packing house

  • update address book

  • submit resignation

  • recruit a 'home secretary'

one month before

  • pack, store or sell everything

  • cancel subscriptions

  • buy travel insurance

  • buy airplane tickets

  • organize vertical file for home secretary

  • organize bank account & finances

  • decide on how to get money while travelling

  • make or update will

  • pack gear, test weight

  • apply for required visas

  • cancel unneeded services

  • buy / collect small gifts

  • make final arrangements for first country

final countdown

  • store /sell/ lend car

  • buy film

  • buy traveller's cheques

  • transfer docs to home secretary

  • forward mail to home secretary

Security Items

  • travellers cheques numbers in an email account
  • emergency phone numbers (email & extra photocopy)
  • internal money belt (see items for inclusion below)
  • insurance information (copy & online)
  • leave a friend w/ (see items to leave below)
  • have zippered pockets sewn inside jackets
  • add velcro to open pockets- leaving a finger width so they can be opened but not 'picked'

Items for money belt inclusion

  • keep money for the day in a little front pocket wallet
  • passport
  • immunization record
  • tickets
  • credit card
  • prescriptions (eyes as well)
  • extra cash

Items to leave with a friend

  • blank signed cheques
  • investment info, access to investments
  • copies of ALL the following
    travel and health insurance
    drivers licence
    birth cert
    immunization record
    credit card
    prescriptions / doctor's letter / contact info for doctor
    traveller's cheques
    property information
    emergency contacts



  • Visa sized photos

  • One guidebook for the first country

  • sandals

  • hygiene items

  • small gift items

  • earplugs/eyeshade

  • knife (Leatherman)

  • flashlight

  • padlock (combination)

  • a roll or 2 of TP

  • small compass

First Aid Portion

  • sunscreen

  • DEET

  • Canestan / Monistat

  • moleskin

  • prescriptions and a letter (plus copies)

  • prescription and a letter if you want to take some needles (for use by clinics in countries where they may not have clean/sterilised needles and you need an injection)

  • charcoal tabs

  • take B1 daily for mosquito deterrant (how much?)

  • opthalmic antibiotic cream - can also be used for eye infections