The Minimalist Guide to Travel Planning for Iceland
Travel enlivens the mind. New destinations, cuisine, people, customs, and culture will awaken your dormant wanderlust.
When everything is unfamiliar, you’ll feel like a child, approaching each day with a sense of curiosity, delighted by the most trivial things. While, of course, there is a whole wide wonderful world awaiting you, one destination to put on your wish list is Iceland.
Travelers who visit Iceland describe it as a wonderland with a moon-like landscape, ice-blue glaciers, geothermal soaking pools, and active volcanoes. They also say that the people are wonderfully hospitable, the food delicious, and the adventures fabulous.
Renting a Car
Incidentally, the best way to see Iceland is by car. It’s a good idea to rent a car in Iceland as soon as you land at Keflavik airport. Driving your own car will set you free You can do what you want and go where you please.
Icelandic roads allow you to take in the gorgeous scenery. You’ll glimpse white icebergs and black-sand beaches along the way, and you’ll drive past geysers and glaciers, and you’ll stop to admire volcanoes and waterfalls.
While planning any type of trip is exciting, planning a visit to another country is the most thrilling. But to make the most of your short time overseas, here are some logistics to help you enjoy your visit to Iceland or anywhere else in the world you’d love to go.
Photo credit: Moyan Brenn
Get Your Travel Documents in Time
It sometimes takes a little time to get your passport and visa. If you need to apply for your passport, expect it to take four to six weeks. Also, check with your State Department to find out your visa requirements.
This can be as simple as visiting their website. Once you’ve got everything organized, leave a photocopy of your passport, driver’s license, and visa with a family member—so that you can call them if you should ever lose your passport when overseas.
Do an Online Reconnaissance
Map out your key destinations before you leave home. When you land after a long plane trip, which might involve layovers, delays, hunger, and fatigue, you don’t want to have to try and remember the name of the hotel or the street where it’s located!
Make a comprehensive list of the addresses of hotels, shops, museums, attractions, and restaurants that you plan to visit. This will allow you to make good use of your time when you get there.
You won’t waste any time figuring out where to go and what to do and how much you can afford to spend.
Create a Travel Budget
If you don’t have a clear idea of how much money you have available, you’ll probably spend it on things you don’t need and forsake buying the things or experiences that will provide you with the greatest satisfaction.
You’ll also have the money you’ll need to take care of all sorts of miscellaneous costs–for example, foreign exchange transaction fees, airport baggage fees, restaurant tips, and so on.
Stay Organized with Travel Software
You can organize all your important information faster and more conveniently with useful travel apps. A great app will help you to keep track of hotel bookings, museum tickets, taxi cab services, and flight, bus, and train schedules.
Do Your Homework
It’s a good idea to do a little online research about the country you’re about to visit. This will help you understand the people and the culture better. When you go to museums, you’ll know what you’re seeing.
By understanding the politics, economics, history, geography, and other interesting things about the country you’re visiting, you’ll have a much deeper appreciation for everything when you get there. You’ll have a sense of context.
Photo credit: Moyan Brenn
Learn Key Phrases
Although you don’t need to be fluent by any means, it will be fun to learn a few key phrases like “Please,” “Thank you,” “How are you?” and “How much does this cost?”
By planning your trip as best you can, you’ll increase your chances of getting the most out of your experience. Instead of feeling lost all the time, you’ll have a sense of direction, spend your money wisely, and make the best use of your time.
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