I love to travel. There’s nothing quite like immersing yourself in a new culture and new surroundings, especially when it’s for a purpose bigger than yourself. But sometimes, it can be hard to get started with this kind of trip—and even harder to stay inspired on the road. That’s why I’ve put together some tips for planning and traveling on your next meaningful journey.
Determine what you want to do and why
It’s important to know what you want to do and why. If you want to travel for fun, that’s fine! But if your goal is to discover yourself or find a new career path, then it’s best if those goals are aligned with what interests and excites you as an individual.
For example, maybe one of my favorite things about traveling has always been learning about different cultures–so when I plan my next trip, I’ll probably make sure there are plenty of opportunities for me get involved in local traditions and customs. Or maybe another traveler has always wanted more practice speaking foreign languages; in their case, they might prioritize trips where they can engage in conversation with locals at length (or even take classes). Whatever motivates them will inform the decisions they make along their journey: whether it’s choosing which destinations offer better opportunities or making sure nights aren’t wasted sleeping through tour groups’ bus rides from place A back home where B used C because D wasn’t available yet E but F was too late so G got left behind without H either so J went ahead without K either way L had already left M behind N as well O because P wasn’t available yet Q so R got left behind without S either way T went ahead without U either way V…
Figure out how you want to travel
As you begin to plan your trip, it’s important to figure out how you want to travel. Do you want to travel with a purpose? Or do you simply want to go on an adventure?
Traveling with a purpose means that there is something specific that drives your decision-making process when it comes time for planning the details of your trip. This could be as simple as wanting to see every single country in Europe or buying all tourist attraction Dubai tickets (which isn’t possible). It could also mean volunteering at an orphanage or working at an animal shelter while on vacation. There are endless possibilities!
Talk to people who’ve done it before
Talking to people who have been there before is one of the easiest ways to get travel advice. You can ask them what they would do differently, what their favorite places were and why, and what their favorite experiences were. This will give you a good sense for how much time you should spend in each place, which activities are worth doing (or not), and whether or not it’s possible for someone with your interests and personality type to enjoy this trip as much as they did.
If there aren’t any friends who have done something similar before, consider asking friends who live in different parts of the world if they’d be willing to share stories about their own trips abroad–whether those trips were planned by themselves or by someone else!
Organize your trip
Once you’ve decided on the purpose of your trip, it’s time to organize it.
The best way to do this is by creating a list of all the places that match your purpose and then ranking them by priority. For example, if you want to volunteer in an orphanage, do some research and find out which countries have high rates of child abandonment and poverty–these are likely places where there will be an urgent need for volunteers (and where their work will make a difference).
Once you’ve identified those countries or cities, start looking into organizations that run volunteer programs there. Then narrow down your options based on factors like cost, length of stay and whether or not they provide accommodation or transportation within their program fee.
- Get help from friends and family.
- Hire a travel agent.
- Hire a travel planner.
- Use the services of specialists like Airbnb, which connects hosts with guests in their own homes or other unique spaces around the globe — sometimes even in the same city as you’re staying!
You can plan a meaningful journey
It’s not as hard as you think, and it can be incredibly rewarding. Here are some tips on how to get started:
- Decide what your purpose is. Why are you traveling? It may seem obvious, but sometimes we forget why we’re doing something in the first place. It could be anything from wanting to see new places or learn about other cultures, all the way up to helping communities in need by volunteering with local organizations or charities on the ground. Whatever inspires you most will help determine where (and how) your next trip takes place!
- Research what needs there are in each location before deciding where exactly on earth should be next on your list of destinations!
I hope this post has given you some ideas on how to plan a meaningful journey. Traveling with a purpose doesn’t have to be hard, but it does require planning and commitment. I know from experience that it’s worth the effort!