Home Trips Round the world How long to travel for?

How long to travel for?

Most round the world flight tickets are valid for up to 12 months so it depends on 4 factors with regards to how long you stay away.

Your visa situation

The weather and climate

How expensive the place is

What you are interested in

Visa requirements

You will have checked your visa requirements before you arrive in each country to see how long you can stay for in order to plan a rough route. This normally determines your movements.

For example, in Indonesia, British passport holders are granted a 60 day tourist visa which can restrict your island hopping attempts quite drastically if you have not planned carefully.

The weather and climate

The weather is most people's main reason for travelling to somewhere at a certain time of year but if you do arrive when the guidebooks tell you not to you could find yourself sitting in glorious sunshine on a tropical beach with room to move!

For example moving from the west coast of Malaysia to the east coast can take you from monsoon conditions to clear skies.

How expensive the place is

Developed countries and cities usually mean short stays as they tend to be too expensive for travellers who are not planning to work abroad.

Countries like Japan, America, Singapore and Hong Kong though are well worth including in your round the world ticket as stopovers if they are easily built into your particular routing.

Work out how much money you need for a round the world trip.

What you are interested in

If you are interested in a particular area - be it for cultural/historic reasons, or just because the beach is nice then you will always find a way of staying longer.

Remember that your plans will change a million times when you are backpacking so all the pre-trip planning may go straight out of the window as soon as you find your dream beach hut in the middle of nowhere!

Can I get a round the world ticket that is valid for longer than a year?

No flight ticket will last for more than 12 months and travel agents in the UK can only really sell you discounted tickets that start with travel from the UK except for tickets coming back from Australia via the States.

This means that you can take up to 1 year travelling out through Asia and working in Australia and then spend another year travelling back through NZ, the Pacific Islands, the USA and Canada.

So, if you are planning to stay for longer you will have to buy 2 tickets:

Ticket 1 will be a one-way flight to Australia valid for 1 year.

You could either spend all 12 months travelling to Australia, or take a few months stopping en-route in Asia and then spend the rest of the year in Australia.

Ticket 2 would then be an inbound one-way ticket valid for another 12 months, so you could take another year backpacking all the way home.

However, you would have to ensure that you book this in advance in the UK as you require an onward ticket to enter Australia. This ticket would also need to be used within 12 months of purchase.

This is quite an expensive option but you don't have many to choose from!. If you do end up doing this you must check your visa and onward ticket requirements directly with the relevant embassies. This is one of the only ways you can book a round the world ticket that is valid for 2 years.

Air New Zealand and United Airlines are the only airlines at present to be able to do this and they keep withdrawing this privilege from time to time so double-check flight prices online or with your travel agent.

How long should I stay at each stop of my RTW ticket?

Most backpackers aim to stay for about a month in most places they visit on their trip - anything else is just a bonus.

Remember not to cram too many destinations into your round the world ticket - you may be getting lots of stamps in your passport but you are almost certainly missing the real feel of the countries you travel through.

It is really not that important to set how long your stay at each place during your planning stage as most round the world flights and multi stop flight tickets are date changeable to ensure that your trip is as flexible and changeable as your mind!

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