Preparing to depart

Essentials before you go

I recently found a notebook I used when preparing for a six-month overland trip and subsequent travel for 8 months.  It contained page after page of notes and lists of things I needed to do before I left.  Re-reading it brought a chill down my spine!

If you’re travelling with an organised trip, that company with should provide sufficient information about visa requirements, and it’s up to you to decide what vaccinations you’ll have and what medicine you wish you take (if needed). There are a number of options for vaccinations and medicines, and ways you can save money, should you wish to and these are covered in the section below.

Depending on your circumstances and how long you intend to travel, your departure may be a walk in the park.  Just in case it’s anything like mine I’ve tried to give an idea of the sorts of things I wanted to deal with prior to leaving, so that when I did manage to get out the door I was able to close it, and walk away.


Passport, Visas, Insurance

Depending on your passport and where you’re travelling to, you may find you end up in a ‘visa-hell’ or you might not.  You may find 6-8 weeks before you depart you are unable to use your passport as it needs to be sent away for visas; so it’s important to know if there’s a cut off point for you to travel before you go.

Vaccinations & Medication

Trip-specific vaccinations and medicines can be a costly but an essential expense.  Staying well on the road isn’t always possible but there are things you can do before you leave, and whilst travelling, to lessen the chances of you spending part of your trip in a hospital, or in a toilet.

Planning to be away for a while

For short trips, you may not need to do much except turn the thermostat down and pop the cat in a cattery, but for a longer period away there can be many things that need to be sorted before you go.  Particularly if you’re renting your home or your travels are the start of a change in where, or how, you intend to live your life.



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.