How I planned my 4 months South East Asia trip?

  • Preparation is the key.
  • Impromptu Plan is good too.
  • Willing and be ready to accept any unpredictable/unexpected situation.

How I planned my 4 months trip? The most important thing is by doing research.
Google is my best friend, here are my ways :

1) Google Map

Take a look at the map.
I want to explore four countries for my last trip, hence I took a look how each country looks like.
And which country is next to each other.

Photo source: here

2) Google Flight

I do use a lot of Google Flight engine to search for the cheapest flight.
There are many good deals from different airlines.
For example, Vietnam airline is one of my favourite airlines. I have flown with them for three times, and so far the flying experiences with them were great. They always depart on time. Yes, they are very punctual.
Guess what, I got a great deal to Tokyo, Japan which only costs me about RM700++ (for a return ticket) on last two years ago.
And of course, since it is the airline from Vietnam, so you need to stopover at Vietnam.
For me, which is great because I managed to go out Ho Chi Minch City (HCMC) that time for a half day trip.

Photo Source: here

I also booked with Vietnam Airline which costs me around RM120+ for a one-way ticket, but it is inclusive of
meals on the plane, insurance, luggage etc.
If you are a smart traveller, I am sure you know how to compare to pick the best deal.

3) Contact friends in the country that you are going to visit

If you have any friends in the country that you want to visit, try to ping them and ask some information.
Local knows the best! And if they are willing to hang out and meet up with you, that would be even better.
Don’t worry even if you do not have any friends over there, you are always able to use these websites to ask more questions: Couchsurfing, Travelfish and Lonely Planet .
Or you could also search for any relevant facebook group to join and ask questions from there.
There are many nice people out there which they are willing to share their own travel tips and ways.

Photo Source: here

When I was planning for my solo Japan and Mount Fuji hiking trip that time, I posted on the forum in Courchsurfing.
Ended up I met a nice couchsurfer and we had a great time in Japan..will share my Japan stories on upcoming new posts.

4) Ask yourself what type of travelling you like

This is your own trip hence you could decide what type of travelling style that you like.

For me, I just do not want to have a simply pure travelling kind of trip.
It’s would be boring for me and I like getting involved in voluntary service.
There’s where I started my research for Volunteering in South East Asia.
I did put a lot of research into this because majority volunteering in overseas it seems required to pay for a lump sum
(up to USD1000) which for me, it does not make sense at all. I want to be a volunteer because I want to help people, but ended up
it seems it’s just a tour/ package me to get “participate” in the voluntary service.

5) Volunteering

Luckily enough, I managed to find a website  WORKWAY which I managed to find some hosts and stayed with them.
Despite you still need to pay for USD34 (around RM135) for a yearly membership, for me, it is definitely worth it because
with the amount of RM135, most probably I might just spend it at one day hotel.
The experience to stay with the locals is totally priceless.By doing workaway, they will be able to provide you with a referral letter( if you managed to
receive good feedback from at least 2 hosts)

Photo Source: here

6) Buying insurance

This is essential and must-buy item for your long travel trip.
You cant predict what would happen during your travel time.
It is an adventurous trip and of course, safety is important too.
I have chose Alliance insurance after compared many other insurance companies. And again, it all depends which country you are planning to go.
You can use this website:

Photo Source: here

Overall it was a safe trip for the whole solo trip (besides a few roller coaster journeys on the bus ).

7) Transportation in local

use www.Rome2rio to check if it’s possible to travel from one place to another by bus/train.

Photo Source: here

8) Budget and Money that you need to bring

Money is the most crucial one. How much do you need to bring for such long trip?
In the beginning, I was thinking to open an account in overseas lol..
After chatting with my friend, she just advised me to bring Vietnam Dong and change some USD first.
It is not necessary for you to carry so much cash for your whole journey.
For my case, I started from Vietnam and wanted to stay there longer (ended up I stayed for 2 months) hence I brought the rough costs for 2 months.
And I have also have some USD currency with me (to travel to Cambodia) and when you are going to both Laos and Thailand, you could use the USD currency to change to local currency.

Tip: Laos kip is a pretty small currency, many countries did not accept it and in Laos, and most of them do accept Thai Baht.

9) Be spontaneous 
Despite I have prepared and planned my itinerary initially, there were some places which I’ve decided to go and not to go at last minute.
When I was in Dalat, Vietnam and I have met an old friend. So he suggested me to check out Quy Nyon city (which was not in my list initially)
I went and I liked it a lot.

My Hainoi trip was decided at last minute too.

Do it. Trust me, it’s fun!

10) Enjoy and have fun
And last but not least, just enjoy the whole journey and safe travel!
If you know you are a female traveller, do not go out at night by yourself. This is a common sense, even if you are in your own country, you know what to do
to avoid or to minimize the crime case.
Be a Smart traveller and enjoy the whole journey!

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Other posts: Asian life, are you willing to travel long term?

Luang Prabang , Laos Itinerary

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我选择带上FUFA 台湾休闲鞋
好的物品是需要很别人分享的 🙂

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Why should you travel alone at least once?

  • Because solo traveling is fun (if you know how to plan and enjoy it)
  • No pressure from others
  • You can do whatever and go wherever you like
  • Literally, you could control everything
  • Freedom is the key
  • Get to know more friends easily
  • Dare to venture out something new
  • You could heal yourself
  • Overcome Loneliness feeling
  • To know more about yourself

Sharing my own story here:

It is always my goal to staying long term in overseas.
It is not because I do not like my homeland, somehow I just tend to see, explore and experience new and different stuff in overseas.

Ever since young, I used to have this passion (even till today) and I always shared with my close friends that I want to find a job in overseas, even just going to the neighbouring country Singapore is also Ok for me… you could see how  desperate I am to stay abroad for a long term.

I thought a lot of ways to do make it happen.I tried to apply working holidays to New Zealand on 2017 and it failed. I was upset a while and decided instead of continuing to wait for another opportunity, why not I try to find out other ways to achieve my dream.

Hence it started my research where should I go…where can I travel cheap? I did a lot of online research and consult my friends who have done that before. After everything getting ready, I just tendered my resignation letter to my previous employer without any hesitation.
There how it started my almost 4 months solo trip to Indo-China aka Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand in 2017.

Travelling alone indeed brought me a lot of interesting stories.I still remember Doha, Qatar was the first solo trip that I have ever done. I will share it more in my next new post for “Qatar“ about what happened over there and what had I done with Arabs. Another story about my solo “Japan” trip where I have met a crazy couchsurfer and what crazy stuff I have done over there. Stay tuned for my new posts!

To be frank,traveling alone is not as scary as what you thought.If you are not confident enough to go abroad alone at the moment, try to test yourself in your own country first. Then slowly to those countries which are safe to travel alone.  I could say that I could go anywhere and wherever I like now.(by proper preparation) If I could make it, why not you?

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Asian’s life…are you willing to travel long term?

Many Asians like travelling, however, it is mainly for short-term travelling. Because for us we cannot (aka not willing) to put down all our commitments. We used to follow the social norms, follow whatever it supposed to do in our entire life. When you are reaching the age of mid-20, many people including your family members (parents, uncle, aunties) rushing you to get married and to settle down. Even though the pressure might not come from your family, however, you will start noticing that your bff, your friends are going into another stage. At one point, you wonder am I the awkward one?
Well, sad to be true that there are a lot of people did not know what exactly they want in their life…
Despite they knew, there are many reasons (excuses) to pull them back .. “I do not think I could do that..I wish I could do this but let’s see.”
I would not tell you how enjoyed I was for last long trip in Indo China. By the way, I was there for almost four months (only). However, I would say this is pretty normal kind of culture for westerners. They choose to have a gap year either from university or working life. I have met some travellers where they have even been travelling for a couple of years.
Asians and Westerners are totally different kind of mentality.
These are some questions and doubts from most of the Asian friends:
a) How dare you just quit your job and started to travel?
b) You must be very must come from the rich family…you must have a SUGAR DADDY
c) Don’t you scare that you could not find any job later on?
d) Is it very dangerous to travel alone?
e) Is it safe to go these countries?
f) Do you get money by doing volunteering?
Sometimes it is hard for me to explain in details to people. Some people just would not understand why you chose this way. A lot of jealousy, doubts, negativity from different people. Of course, I am glad that there are still many people and friends that supported and encouraged me throughout the whole journey.
Especially my family members, my parents. When my relative was asking my mum, didn’t she worry me since I travelled alone plus I am a girl…well, my mum replied her steadily: “She used to do that way.” which means she trusted me and of course one thing she knew that she couldn’t stop me. Thanks to mum and dad!
If you are reading my post now and you are an Asian, I would encourage you to try solo travel once in your lifetime (no matter you are a guy or a girl). Of course, before going you must do some homework and preparation.
Feel free to message me if you need some clarification and details. I am willing to answer all above-listed questions 🙂
The Traveller Su
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