Things to remember before your trip
Follow our checklist to set off on your round-the-world trip fully prepared.
- At least a month before you travel, check that your passport is in date and how long it is valid for - some countries require that it is valid for at least six months from the date of your arrival.
- Find out if you need a visa for any of your destinations by checking the country's embassy website. Remember that these can take a few weeks to process and will probably have a fee attached to them so do your research early. However, only start the visa process when you have finalised your plans and booked your flights.
- Visit your doctor or local travel clinic to check whether you need any injections or to take any special medication - such as malaria tablets - before you go away. Also think carefully about the activities you want to take part in on your trip and whether your current health is up to it - for example, if you plan to climb Mount Kilimanjaro but currently struggle climbing a flight of stairs, it might be time to set up a training regime.
- If you already have an annual travel insurance policy, check that it is valid for your trip - for example, many annual policies have a time limit on how long you can travel for and still be covered. Also think about any activities you plan to take part in while away such as bungee jumping or skiing and read the small print of your policy to ensure you are covered. Compare policies and find the best deal for you here.
- Research, research, research! Before your trip, read information in books, magazines, on websites, ask questions in forums and on social networks to make sure you set off fully armed with information on what you want to see and do while you are away. The British and Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) website is a great source of information.
- Be ruthless when packing and think carefully about what you will actually need. While you may have shoes for every occasion while at home, you might resent that extra pair when you are lugging your bag around the world.
- Sort out your travel extras in advance and shop around for them to save money. Big savings can be made by pre-booking extras such as car hire, finding the best rate online for travel money and sorting out your travel insurance well in advance of your trip.
- At least a month before you set off, check whether your current credit or debit cards are suitable for use overseas as many are not and you will incur unwelcome charges for purchases and withdrawals. If not, apply for a card specifically designed to be used abroad
- Pre-paid cards are also a good option for overseas currency and can be used to pay for items in shops and restaurants with low or no fees - but are not suitable for use when checking into a hotel or leaving card details with a car hire provider.
- Don't forget about any bills or regular payments you have set up at home while you are away - such as credit card bills or rent - and access your online banking account regularly to pay any outstanding balances.
- Carry contact details for people at home when you are travelling and make sure that friends and family know where you are and have your contact details. Make sure that you also have details for your travel insurance provider and your bank in case of an emergency.