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So what do we do next?

After our little chat that night in the pub we decided that we would need to do some research. How long do we want to go for?  Where do we want to go? How much money will we need? And the list goes on.

Dave started emailing me routes whilst I was sat at home editing the weeks photographic work, a map using Star Alliance saw us plan a route from Tokyo making our way south-east across Asia down through to Australia & New Zealand eventually flying home from New York. We figured out that if we want to do this properly then a year would be a good amount of time to do what we want to do. Toying with round the world tickets, which did seem like a really good option, we decided that we didn’t want to be fixed into a route, or a time frame, instead allowing for more freedom & flexibility with our ideas & plans.

So we have booked a one way ticket to Tokyo to leave on the 18th October leaving in style with Lufthansa from Manchester airport. The plan so far is that we’ll spend a fortnight or so in Japan before heading across to China & that’s all we need to know right now. At this point we don’t know whether we will fly or sail to China, but it’s defintely something we need to look further into. I love the idea of doing as much overland as we can. I guess this way hopefully we get to see more & if we want to stay in a place for longer then we can. We may hear about places & recommendations that may be of interest to us that are more off the beaten tourist track, so we feel this gives us the flexibility.

With our flight booked the pressure has been relieved a little. Referring to our Lonely Planet – First Time Around the World, at this moment in time we seem to be on track!! The next thing we need to book… Travel Insurance; a meeting with David at Leicester’s STA Travel has given us lots to think about & comparing STA with other insurance for backpackers they stand out, offering the most comprehensive cover & at the best price. Our other items of interest; travel guide books so we can start reading into places more thoroughly & have a better understanding of where we want to go & why. To start with we are taking The Lonely Planet series for Japan & China, along with Japan by Rail by Trailblazer Publications. This last publication is proving to be a very useful tool & I’m sure is going to be very handy with planning our rail routes across Japan. The plan is to post back our guide books as we travel so that we can build up our collection & pick up second hand books from hostels & bookshops as we go.

We have lots of reading to do & are in the process of deciding on camera gear & vaccination advice – what cameras do we take? What injections do we need? Other things on our minds… When does Dave want to hand in his notice from work? And I am hoping to rent my house out whilst we are away so I have to start thinking about estate agents & getting all my gear back to mum & dad’s… Yes lot’s to think about.

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