BootsnAll Travel Network

Travel Planning and Decision Agony Continues

Over the last two months since I last posted, I have made considerable progress in my trip planning.

I decided to try to spend the extra month or so between China and Nepal going through Tibet. A train line to Tibet was recently opened which makes it much easier and somewhat cheaper to get to Lhasa. However I am a little disappointed that Tibet may now be overrun with tourists when I get there as I will be going in September which is peak visiting time for Tibet. Train service started in July and all the trains have been sold out. Tourism has increased so much that they have started limiting access to the Potala Palace (former home of the Dalai Lama).

I have almost decided to use the Oneworld airline alliance RTW ticket for my flights. This alliance has flights to Easter Island which are only available through LAN Chile. The total ticket price quoted to me including all taxes and fees was $4300. I actually consider this to be a good price for a trip that includes over 15 countries and many extended flights. I will have to by one ticket from Bangkok to Siem Reap, Cambodia as they don’t fly that route. I am hoping that tickets don’t go up due to fuel prices before I am ready to buy.

On the vaccination front, I just bought the third booster of the Hepatitis B vaccine today. I have already completed my typhoid and hepatitis A shots taken before a trip to Mexico last year. I still would like to get a polio booster, meningitis, Japanese Encephalitis. The Japanese Encephalitis vaccine comes in three shots. Each shot is $100. Trying to find someone in South Carolina to provide the encephalitis shot has been fun. After being bounced between two county health departments, I was finally referred to an infectious disease doctor who apparently moonlights as a travel clinic doctor as well. I decided against the rabies vaccine as it requires three shots @$180 per shot and if you get bitten you will still need to be vaccinated anyway. I will probably wait until next year to try to get the remaining vaccines so that my insurance will pay for them.

I have managed to contact several people that I know overseas and have arranged to visit some of them. This should help save me some money and give me an occasional break from the dorm/shared bathroom life. The two that are semi certain right now are in Bangkok and New Zealand. The person in New Zealand is actually someone I met through Bootsnall. I am still waiting on a friend in India and China to get back with me.

On the work front, I am still agonizing over the decision about whether I actually want to take the plunge and do this trip. Some days I am excited about the idea and other days I think that I am being irresponsible. If I decide to go, my plan is to let work know of my intentions on November 15 and quit on January 15. I would then live with my parents until my my adventure begins on March 1. I picked this date so that I would have time to do my income taxes before I left. The IRS apparently won’t give you an extension for more than six months except for special cases and a long trip is not one of them. I also haven’t decided if I want to try to see if the company will give me a leave of absence or just make a clean break.

I am continuing to try to find places to cut costs so that I can save more money for my trip. I have cancelled all my magazine subscriptions, cut back on the number of haircuts I get, and things like that. In the near future I plan to start selling some of my furniture to raise more funds (and it is less I have to store while I am away).

As always, I appreciate any comments that people want to leave me.

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No Responses to “Travel Planning and Decision Agony Continues”

  1. G Says:

    [That’s *Dalai* Lama, Barry! 🙂 Sorry, had to!]

    Dude, at some point, just take a deep breath, say a few Hail Marys and just go! I guess decision time might be when those 4300 dollars have to be handed over, eh?

    Man, I so wish I could be doing this! But alas, I’m being called elsewhere … I shall thoroughly enjoy following you vicariously through here. And I certainly hope it works out for next July in India.

    As for Tibet — it’s no wonder that people have accused the Chinese government of wanting to basically help further colonize the place by opening this rail line.

  2. Posted from India India
  3. Allison Says:

    Sounds like you are doing a lot of research and that is great. I think you should quit some time later than January since you won’t be leaving for a while anyway. That’s a lot of money to be ‘throwing away’ that could be going straight to savings or what have you.

    Give me your itenerary at some point and I’ll see if there are any military bases/friends nearby for you to crash with…..

    Life is too short not to do something you REALLY want to do. It’s nice, but I don’t have the drive to make a trip like that…. You on the other hand, that’s all you think about.

  4. Posted from United States United States

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