Arriving at Machu Picchu When planning a trip, consider what style fits you best. Some travelers, especially those who are planning international travel for the first time, find the prospect of travel without a group daunting, maybe even downright scary. But it doesn’t have to be. Group travel (tour groups of 25 to 50 people) suit some people. And some people would rather stay at home than join a group of that size. Consider: Do you need someone to make all of the arrangements for you? Or would you prefer to customize your itinerary to what you what to see & do? Some random thoughts might pop into your head, like: How do I make the travel arrangements? How do I know what I’m getting? How do I make bookings? Will I get lost/scammed/robbed? I had these concerns, too, but we really didn’t want to be herded around as part of a large group. We wanted a more personalized trip. In this day & age of the internet, self-planned travel is often as safe & secure as a prearranged tour. With all the myriad travel websites and forums now available, you can research a good itinerary, find good hotels & restaurants, and find all the travel connections you need. You can find reviews of all these & recommendation by travelers who have been there. And you can get a heads-up on what to avoid. The websites will give you the general information, and the forums will give you more specific information from the travelers themselves. Some of my favorite travel websites and forums include: Trip Advisor, Lonely Planet, Virtual Tourist, Fodor’s, Frommer’s, Igougo. On another post, I will discuss researching airline fares & schedules online. I used these websites and travel forums to book a successful 2-week trip to Peru. We had exactly the itinerary we wanted, the hotels we wanted, and side trips as we pleased. This was our first trip to South America. Everything went off without a hitch, and we had a wonderful time. And no, I am not fluent in Spanish or Quechua!
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