Planning for long-term travel

Planning for long-term travel

It all depends on why you’re travelling as to what personal preparation is require before you leave.  I was intending to be away for a long time and rented my house out.  In the run up to leaving, I probably spent 12+ months preparing and selling my belongings.

I can’t possibly tell you what you need to do for your circumstances, but here’s a list of some things you might need to consider.


Set up internet banking and ensure your bank knows the countries you are intending to travel to.  My bank preferred I cancelled text message banking (where I received weekly mini statements) and insisted I give exact dates of travel to countries I might be intending to use my cards.

Establish how you can make payments before you go.  I have one of those number fobs that I took with me so I could set up new payments whilst I travelled.

Legal issues

If you don’t have one, make a will.  If you can bear it set up Power of Attorney for both health and finances.  I say ‘if you can bear it’ because I found considering how I’d want to be cared for if something happened to me quite distressing.

Important documents

Scan and email to yourself, (or store safely in encrypted cloud storage), copies of:

Passport, birth certificate, travel insurance, education certificates (if you’re intending to work whilst away), visas for your trip, vaccination certificates, prescriptions and other important documents.


Consider how you will store valuable jewellery or important documents whilst you’re away.


If you need to complete a tax return whilst you’re away, ensure you’re set up to do this and have access to the right information.

Renting a property

If you’re intending to rent out a property, (and this isn’t something you’re familiar with), do spend time working out the best solution.  Including how you will handle a change in tenants, paying tax, who has keys, paying people to do boiler checks and maintenance etc.

Renewing/changing travel insurance

You might end up being away longer than you think.  Are you able to renew your travel insurance when you’re out of the country?  Many companies do not allow this.  I used True Traveller insurance and think they are one of the few who allow you to renew a policy when you’re already out of the country.

If your plans change and you travel to countries you’d didn’t intend to, check you’re still covered by your original travel insurance.  Particularly if you go to the USA or countries with a varied political climate or changing health warnings.

Storing your belongings

Some years ago, I went away travelling for ‘6 weeks’. Six weeks turned into 3 months, then a year.  I had a home left empty for almost a year.  I returned and rented it out and put things in storage for ‘a few months’.  SEVEN YEARS and numerous storage facility moves later I finally removed the items from storage.  I was horrified to see that I’d been paying to store items uncomfortable shoes and clothes that I didn’t like and those I did no longer fitted!  I’d paid more in storage than the value of the items.

For my last long-term travels, I vowed that nothing would go into paid storage (thank you kind parents and sister with loft space…) and everything that did get stored I needed to be sure I wanted.  Even still, when I returned 18 months later half of the items were immediately sold or gifted. Learn from my expensive mistakes!




Much of the information and advice expressed on this website is the personal opinion of the writer. If you choose to follow any advice you do so at your own risk with no recourse to the writer or Adventures in Overland.