When travelling for this amount of time, a lot of research is required. We researched mainly via other people’s blogs and we also used Lonely Planet as it is full of useful information!
We did a lot of research on what jabs we need, maybe a little too much! When reading online about all the jabs we needed, I was getting worried because I have quite a big fear of injections!
There were many injections our nurse told us we didn’t really require, so it is best to speak with them before doing loads of research and stressing yourself out for no reason!
When I went to see my nurse, she was using the Fit For Travel NHS website, where it will tell you lots of useful information about each country you are visiting.
We both got Hepatitis A, Typhoid and Tetanus / Polio jabs. We had TB when we were children so didn’t need to worry about that.
Tip: Make sure you speak to your nurse and make sure any injections you are required to get at a travel clinic are actually necessary. We nearly got conned into getting Yellow Fever vaccinations and paying £50 each for this when it wasn’t actually required. Please do not take this post as advice on what jabs you will need. Consult with your nurse/doctor and they will tell advise you.
We booked our Multi-city return flights from London to Hanoi, Vietnam, then to come home from Bali, Indonesia, back to London. This was booked via STA Travel. Because we are both under the age of 26, we managed to get discounted rates by purchasing a Student card with STA Travel for £12. Otherwise, Sky Scanner is also useful, even if you are looking to compare prices, if you are flexible with dates then you can search for the best prices throughout the month.
We booked most of our hostels for Vietnam, however, this probably wasn’t a good idea as we are now tied into fixed dates, this doesn’t allow us to be as flexible. I wouldn’t recommend doing it this way. The main reason we did it like this is to try and work out exactly what date we will be leaving Vietnam so that we can book our tickets out of the country (this is required by Immigration to prove that we are leaving the country).
For all the other countries, we are going to book the hostels a few nights in advance. We are booking our hostels with Booking.com and we are also using Trip Advisor to check that the hostels are a decent quality.
Tip: It is always a good idea to check out the location for each property, the cheapest price isn’t always the most important factor because if you are far from the main area then you will just have to pay more to get to and from that area.
For Vietnam, we have chosen to do the Visa On Arrival where you pay to get the Approval letter costing about £15 per person and then get the stamping fee when you get to the airport (approx £25 per person). The website we used for this was Vietnam Visa Pro. There is another way you can do the Visas. You can get your full Visa via the Vietnamese Embassy (costing around £70 pp).
For a few of the destinations we are going to visit, they require us to provide 1, possibly 2 passport photos. So make sure you take plenty of passport photos with you.
Tip: Set up a Quidco account. This is a cashback website, where we booked our flights, accommodation, online shopping etc. Just from booking our flights, we received around £50 back.
Obviously, everyone needs to carry out a bit of research before travelling, but the most important thing to remember is to not stress! The trip you are planning is going to be a trip of a lifetime and stressing is not a good start!
Just enjoy the planning, because it’s all part of the experience