March 1, 2009 United States
So it’s just a bit over 2 weeks from our target departure, and we DON’T HAVE OUR TICKETS YET!
As much as this freaks me out, the truth is RTW ticketing is really different from normal flights. The fares don’t really go up and down based on when you book. They go up and down based on where you book/fly from, and what tax amounts you have to pay to all destination airports. You can book as little as 7 days before taking off, but I’m trying to get things finalized in the next few days.
We originally thought we would visit Central America, South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. After lots of notes and noodling, we decided that was just too ambitious. As unorganized as we seem to be, we have everything broken down by the week:
Leave US Mid-March
Mexico, Yucatan Peninsula 1 wk
Guatemala, Chichitenango/Antigua/Tikal 2 wks
Peru, Limo/Cuzco/Machu Picchu/Arequipa/Iquitos 4 wks
Brasil, Pantanal/Foreleza 2 wks
South America to Europe Mid-June
Spain, Portugal, Morocco 6 wks
Turkey, Istanbul travel all the way to Germany, Munich via Greece, the Dalmation Coast, Eastern Europe 12 wks
England/Ireland 2 wks
Europe to Asia Mid-Oct
India 4 wks
Laos to Malaysia via Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand 7 wks
China 8 wks
Japan 2 wks
The tickets we are buying luckily allow us to keep all our dates open. I’m sure that these dates will shift here and there, but we’ve taken so much out already (Ecuador, Argentina, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Egypt) that I hope we won’t have to slim it any further.
Before we book I need to set up travel insurance, if I want it to protect my RTW flights as well. There are a few visas we’ll need (Cambodia, China, India, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, Turkey, Nepal, Burma) but luckily most can be arranged upon arrival at the airport, or might not be necessary if we don’t stay longer than 30 days. The only exceptions seem to be China and India. We’re lucky to still have time on our Brazilian visas which we secured for our honeymoon — that saves us $200/ea.!
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