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Trip Preparation - Research

Shortly after our trip to Africa, June of '97, we began talking  about a year-long trip around the world.  A few months later, we began telling people about our idea - then we KNEW it was real.

First step - where do we want to go?  Up went the big wall world map with a pin for each place - we soon found we would have to save a few spots for future trips.  Once our list of desired destinations was narrowed down, it was time to hop on the phone with Delta's "Around the World Desk".  They were helpful in narrowing the stops by limiting the number of miles we were allowed on the "Around the World" Ticket.  Next came determining the amount of time we would spend in each spot - thus we had our itinerary (or at least something to follow).

Next came preplanning some parts of the trip - a Greek Isles cruise on a 40 passenger yacht with Laura's brother flying over from Chicago to join us, a Russian lakes cruise from St. Petersburg to Moscow, New Year's Eve celebration with Todd and Kendra Bone (friends from Atlanta), a guided tour through Turkey, and finally, a guided tour though Egypt. We also needed to pre-determine when and how we would need Eurail and Britrail passes so that we could get these 'in hand' before we left.  Lastly, we needed to plan our route through Australia and New Zealand so that we could also have these tickets sent to us prior to our departure.

The rest of the trip will just just happen as we go - planes, trains, boats, hydrofoils, hotels, B&B's, Hostels - you name it!!

Another very important part of our preparation was simply reading/studying about each country to get ideas on what to see, where to stay, what to eat, and what to do.  This has helped tremendously.

Next we had visa's to secure, shots to get, simple things like selling our cars, renting our home, finding a kind heart to temporarily adopt our cat, making sure our financial issues were in order, finding an insurance policy to cover us world-wide, and of course shopping for all the clothes and neat stuff we'll need along the way.   We joined special travel groups and organizations (for discounts), got a complete physical and dental exam, drafted wills, secured a safe deposit box, and planned our Bonvoyage party!

Last but not least, we designed the web page you're reading (and all the things that go with it) to stay in close contact with all we know and love - many, many hours.  Hopefully, this experience can now be shared by all people who know what travel really means.

The following is a quote from one of Rick Steves' many great books on travel -Rick Steves' Scandinavia.  This passage on his "Back Door Travel Philosophy" kind of sums up how we feel about our trip.  Join us - - -
"Travel is intensified living - maximum thrills per minute and one of the last great sources of legal adventure.  Travel is freedom.  It's recess, and we need it.

Experiencing the real thing requires catching it by surprise, going casual . . "Through the Back Door."

Extroverts have more fun.  If your trip is low on magic moments, kick yourself and make make things happen.  If you don't enjoy a place, maybe you don't know enough about it.  Seek the truth.  Recognize tourists traps.  Give a culture the benefit of your open mind.  See things as different but not better or worse.  Any culture has much to share.

Of  course, travel, like the world, is a series of hills and valleys.  Be fanatically positive and militantly optimistic.  If something's not to your liking, change your liking.  Travel is addicting.  It can make you a happier American, as well as a citizen of the world.  Our earth is home to nearly 6 billion equally important people.  It's humbling to travel and find that people don't envy Americans.  They like us but, with all due respect they wouldn't trade passports.

Globetrotting destroys ethnocentricity.  It helps you understand and appreciate different cultures.  Travel changes people.  It broadens perspectives and teaches new ways to measure quality of life.  Many travelers toss aside their hometown blinders.  Their prized souvenirs are the strands of different cultures they decide to knit into their own character.  The world is a cultural yarn shop.  "Back Door" travelers are weaving the ultimate tapestry.  Come on, join us!!!"

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Last modified: February 05, 2000    Photographs and text 1998 Scott and Laura Kruglewicz. All Rights Reserved.