6 Months Until I Leave to Travel: What Am I Supposed to Do?

Physics textbooks and folders in bedroom
This is what 4 years of a physics degree roughly amounts to!

Here it is, the 6 month point!

In 6 months time, I will be officially off on my round the world trip! Over the past couple of months, I’ve become incredibly fickle and even more indecisive. I’m currently changing my mind about possible destinations every day. More on that later…

So for now, here’s a list of everything I’m planning on doing before next month:


Decluttering is the main thing I’m really going to be focusing on over the next month. I have an incredible amount of clutter and confess to being a total hoarder. Since making the decision to travel, I’ve come to the conclusion that my house contains a lot of junk and it all has to go!

I have over 50 physics textbooks from my degree, and while I love having my own little physics library at home, it’s unnecessary to keep them, especially when the majority of them are on areas I will never study again. I’m going to start by listing them on Amazon, and hope that a few of them start to sell. After a bit of research, I’ve found that Amazon pays quite well for textbooks in comparison to other online stores.

This is what four years of a physics degree amounts to!

I also want to try and get rid of all my CDs and DVDs this month too. There are a few websites that will buy your second hand ones off of you and, although I won’t make as much as I would selling them individually, I want to get rid of them as soon as possible.

As for books that aren’t textbooks, I can’t see me being able to sell them for a lot of money on Amazon, eBay, or otherwise, so I will donate them to a charity shop.

Other than these main items, I’ll start listing random junk on eBay that I think might be worth something and hope for the best!


This month, I’m going to research possible cameras to take with me, too. I want a really good camera, and I currently have my eye on a Canon EOS 550D. This is likely to cost me about £700-£800 so I don’t know if I can justify spending that amount of money on a camera! On top of that, I also want a smaller, point and shoot camera that I can carry around with me at all times — something cheap for those times when I don’t feel comfortable getting out my SLR.

I’m thinking about buying a new laptop, too. I currently have a Macbook Pro, which I love to bits but I think I’ll have to sell it and buy a new one with the money I make. I want one that’s light and small, so it won’t take up much room. I would also like it to be cheap!

I’m considering buying a Kindle. I love to read while I’m away but I really don’t want to have to carry lots of heavy books with me, especially when I know I’ll get through most of them in a few days! A Kindle would solve this problem. I could buy some Lonely Planet guidebooks for specific locations and put them on there, too, so I’d have everything all in one place.


I have a confession to make: I hate needles! In fact, every time I’ve had to have a blood test, I’ve ended up passing out! I wish I could get away with not having any at all but it’s something I have to do, especially as I’ve heard a lot of them have to given several months in advance!  This is going to be tough to do, as I’m not sure exactly where I’m planning on visiting, but any countries I think I might go to will have to be included.


I’d like to make a decision on my first three months of travelling by the end of the month. I’ve decided to start in Morocco now, and spend around two months in Europe going to the places I most want to visit. I’m finding it tough to narrow down the options to just a few but hopefully by the end of the month I’ll have a much better idea.

I’ve started looking into travelling on the Trans-Siberian Railway as an alternative to flying after I’m finished in Europe, but I’m still not sure on this yet.


I’m almost on track to reach my target savings goal by July. There’s a few websites I use to write online reviews, which used to earn me £50 a month, as well as some online survey websites, so these should help tip me over the edge.

Have any suggestions about what else I should be doing at this point before leaving? Can you offer any advice about anything else in the post? Leave a comment and let me know! :)

Previous My First Post: About Me, My Plans, and My Blog
Next My Round-the-World Trip Itinerary


  1. Jaap
    January 20, 2011

    Hi Lauren,
    Nice, i’m gonna start just a month earlier.
    Maybe a packinglist is a nice thing to make, I made one to.
    Here’s a link about things not to forget:
    Happy travels!

    • January 20, 2011


      Thanks for the link, it’s really useful! There’s so much to remember, that I feel like I’m going crazy trying to plan it all! I know it’ll be worth it in the end though! :)

      Yes, I definitely will make a packing list, probably in a few months time!

  2. Mike Lenzen
    January 20, 2011

    My wife Ashley and I are leaving for our trip in July too! We are in full on saving mode, and are working away at selling all of our stuff. We had the realtor stop by yesterday, and his biggest advice was de-clutter before we start showing the house. That puts us firmly in a rush to get our stuff out the door.

    I’ve been using a local free classified add website with the most success. I gave ebay a try, but the fees are quite expensive. I’d hold a garage sale, but it’s winter hear in Canada and that just won’t fly. I have a bad feeling a lot of stuff is going to hit the trash.

    • January 21, 2011

      That’s great, we’ll be able to help each other out, experiencing thing at the same time!

      I get the same feeling too, that I’m going to have to throw a lot of my stuff away… It seems stupid going through all the effort of selling something, to only make £1!

  3. Sheryll
    January 20, 2011

    Yay! Can’t wait to read about all of your adventures. I’m so with you in the needle thing, I’m completely terrified. My doctor actually prescribes me ONE xanax or some sort of anti-anxiety medicine before they have to poke me. It really helps calm me down.

    • January 21, 2011

      Hahahaha wow! I don’t think I’m that bad… I generally have to look in the other direction though and squeal “Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god!!!”

  4. Sunee
    January 21, 2011

    It all sounds very exciting! Good luck with your planning and getting ready for the big day of setting out. One word of advice though, I found Morocco a complete culture shock (and I’m from Africa!), so I would suggest perhaps not starting there straight away but rather ease you way into it after you’ve become a little more used to travelling.

    • January 21, 2011

      Thank you! And thanks for the advice… Maybe I’ll put Morocco last on my Europe section instead then!

  5. Jill - Jack and Jill Travel The World
    January 21, 2011

    We’re in a similar stage of prepartaion for our own trip. Would ylove to follow your adventures. Have one quick question though, how do I subscribe to your blog? I keep looking for a RSS feed icon but can’t seem to find one.

    • January 24, 2011

      Yes, it took me a while to figure it out, I’m so new to this blogging thing! There should be an icon now on the right hand side of the screen!

  6. Kim
    January 21, 2011

    Hello! I just found your site. I am planning an RTW as well (leaving in January 2012) so I had to stop by and say congratulations… only six months left!!! We are also going to be selling all of our stuff before we leave. I just sold a lot of my books the other day and I was dreading it, but it wasn’t so bad after the fact. When I moved across the country (I live in the US) seven years ago, I brought only what I could fit in a car. I thought I would miss so much but I never looked back. In fact, I have no idea what it was that I got rid of so long ago that I thought I would miss. Anyway, my point is that your decluttering will feel freeing. Stuff ties us down. Memories (and you’re about to make a million of them) are what you really want to hold on to! I’ll be following along!

    • January 24, 2011

      Hi Kim!! :)

      Just started selling a lot of bits over the last couple of days and it actually feels really liberating! I have so much “stuff” that I really don’t need… All the clutter is starting to irritate me and I can’t wait to get rid of it all now!

  7. pokeken
    January 23, 2011

    Good for the trip ahead. Hers some tips for the techie bits of your post:

    Camera – I have a 550d andlove it to bits but lugging it around with the other lenses is a pain when I go travelling BUT for me being able to capture “the” moment is part of the travelling experience.

    The problem is that you need to learn how to make the best use of such a DSLR. Theres no point in getting one if you can’t make the best of it when travelling about. So this would mean a weekend course (£250) on top of the £650 for the std kit.

    Personally if cost is a problem then I would instead buy either a canon s95 or a panasonix DMC LX5. These are great compact sized cameras that will be easy to carry but still give great shots.

    The money you save could go towards a better laptop or extra safety money for your trip (I always carry around a second credit card and money that will last me afew days on my person but not in my wallet)

    Laptopwise, I would use the extra cash and steer away from any 10″ netbooks. Their screens are just pathetic and they can barely run 1 programme at a time.

    I would try a Asus Eee PC 1215N with a decent screen (12″) and a processor and GPU that can handle movies/office/photos whilst still being small and light.

    good luck!

    • January 24, 2011

      Hey you!! :) Haven’t spoken to you in ages, how have you been?!

      Wow, thank you so much for all that information!! I’m pretty competent with DSLR’s, I’ve used one before… But I still have a lot to learn so I will probably buy one 2 months before leaving so I can get a lot of practise in!

      I have been looking at the Eee PCs too! (Ugh, I really don’t want to go back to Windows!!!), they seem to be pretty lightweight and reliable.

      Lots of research to do!!! :)

  8. pokeken
    January 24, 2011


    yes I’ve away in New Zealand for work since November so pretty busy and just tweet when I have time.

    if you know how to use a DSLR then you’ll love the 550D. I would even recommend that you forget the compact camera purchase and spend the cash on another lens…somethings cheap like the canon 50mm 1.8ii would really bring out extra performance from the 550D and allow you to take great portraits and low light shots.

    If you fancy going on a photography course then I can recommend the one I went on (Nigel Wilson) who is based in London.

    As for the laptop…the best thing is to go to tottenham court road and test some out (Micro Anvika has a good range to try out)

    If you have any photo queries or got questions about New Zealand as a place to travel then give me a tweet!

  9. Jennifer
    July 27, 2011


    I just started saving on my future 2 year ROTW adventure, when I came across your blog(specifically the blog on how to make extra money)! I can’t wait to read about your travels.

    Ps. I am scared to death of needles too, I am not looking forward to getting all of the shots that will be needed for when I volunteer in Africa. Which is a must for my trip. Good Luck!

    • August 1, 2011

      Hi Jennifer,

      How exciting, the planning stages are so much fun! The injections were actually not so bad in the end. I was glad I didn’t have to end up getting the Yellow Fever one though…

      Thanks for commenting and hope to see you following along on my trip! :)

  10. Jennifer
    August 1, 2011

    Yes they are! I keep changing my mind. Ha! I want to go over where, and I know that is not going to happen, but it is still fun planning! I can’t wait to read about your travels! have a great day!

    • August 1, 2011

      I know that feeling – I still want to go everywhere, and keep adding random places to my list! :)

  11. krissy caruso
    June 5, 2016

    Hey Lauren, I love your blog so much I am starting from the beginning to read it all! I am planning a rtw trip and can always use extra income and I was wondering do you have any recommendations for those sites you used for reviews and online surveys? I googled them for years but I can’t find any that are real! Or good!

    • June 14, 2016

      I used Ciao and DooYoo. Oh, and Yougov for surveys.

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