So, how do you do it? How can you take a trip of any length, without having an itinerary? How do you plan to traverse the country when your budget is low, and you don’t have a plan?
The Indian Railways offers the cheapest modes of transport, and at every town, a simple Indian railway inquiry can help you decide which town to head to next.
Some of the tips to keep in mind while taking a journey unplanned are listed below.
- Do Your Research
At least decide the place you are heading to next and do read about that place. Necessary information such as places to visit, hotels, food and language can be beneficial. In India, if one travels a 100 km everything changes, the food, the culture, the language, the climate and, that would be quite surprising.
Thus, having some basic information can be ground changing.
- Pack Light
If you are travelling alone, and on an unplanned journey, it’s better to carry only the essentials. Carry a single backpack and do not fill it. This simplicity will allow you to quickly travel by plane, train, walk or hitch a ride. It will do good to your feet and back as well. In case you buy a few souvenirs along the journey, you can put into the same backpack. Also, empty space allows you to stock up some must haves and consumables.
- Don’t Book Accommodations
Every town has hotels and replaces, and one can do without booking it in advance. Since the journey is not planned, it doesn’t make sense to book. Also, if you book for an extended stay, that would be rather limiting. Preferably book for a day or two, you can always extend your stay, or you could move to a different place. When you find a place worth spending time at, then you can extend your stay and enjoy as much as you like.
- Make Friends with Locals
Traders, farmers, wait staff, store owners, cab drivers and the general public – engage with them. The more friendly you are to the people, the more friendly they are likely to be with you. When you want to initiate a conversation, start with a smile and a simple question, you will find that the discussion quickly follows. Having local friends can be useful. They make even offer to show you around or help you in some way in case you’re in trouble. Remember, people are kind everywhere, one just has to believe that.
- Ask a Lot of Questions
Don’t be shy. As a traveller in a new destination, you are not expected to know things, and there is no limit to questions you can ask in one day. Where am I? Where is this? Who are you? Where are you? Ask locals what they prefer. What do you think? Where do you hang out? Where would you stay? Where do you eat? What do you eat? The answers you receive will surely be better than any guidebook could curate.