How do you plan an extended trip?

Step 1

  • Figure out where you want to go
  • How long can you go for
  • What is your budget

Step 2

  • Research the area
  • What do you most want to do
  • Know your limits (cash, physical limits etc…)

Step 3

  • Be prepared for mistakes happen
  • Have back up cash for when you get home
  • Make a tentative time frame for how long you want to stay

Things to consider

  • Always allow for travel time
  • Will the buses run when you get there?
  • The hotel allow for late check in?

Example of traveling and the things to consider.

Destinations: Honolulu, Osaka, Naha, Aka Island, Ishigaki Island, Yonaguni Island

Traveling to the remote islands of Japan.

Flight from Honolulu to Osaka

  1.  This flight goes forward in time, around 10 hours.  
  2. Do you want to upgrade?
  3. Air Asia offers flat bed and you can sleep.  So, no jet lag.
  4. Try to get a non-stop vs 1 or 2 stops.
  5. What time will you arrive?  Do you need to spend the night before going to Naha?

Flight from Osaka to Naha

  1.  Aka Island is the 1st stop.  What time does the ferry leave from Naha Port?
  2. Will you need to spend the night before catching the ferry?
  3. Maybe stop and site see Naha for a 2 days.

Ferry from Naha to Aka Island

  1.  How far is my hotel from important things.
  2. Far from the Dive Shop, convenience store, port, etc…

Aka Island to Ishigaki Island 

  1. There is not a ferry to Ishigaki.
  2. Back to Naha and catch a flight.
  3.  Book the flight with enough time to get on the ferry and get to the airport.

Ishigaki Island to Yonaguni Island

  1.  Ferry from Ishigaki port to Yonaguni Island.
  2. 4.5 hours ride

Yonaguni to Mainland

  1.  They have flight to most of the mainland.
  2. I’m thinking Tokyo.

Always remember that you may block off for 7 days somewhere but 2 of those days will be mostly travel.  It’s exhausting and always make time for downtime and rest.


  • I spent a lot of money on plane tickets I didn’t need.  Don’t buy them to far in advance.
  • Find out if the country your traveling to requires a plane ticket out of the country.
  • No destination in mind yet?  Buy a toss away ticket, cheapest one you can find.
  • Reminder!  If a country only allows 30 days they will charge for the time spent over the 30 day date, or 90.  

The hardest part is trying to figure out how long you want to stay

I recommend very fluid plans and not hard, set in stone plans.  You may like a place and want to stay longer but can’t because you pre-paid for hotels and a flight.  Now you have to go or loss your money.


Scuba Divers

Expect diving to cost as much as western areas.  It is not cheaper because it’s Asia. 

Most Expensive

  • Raja Ampat, Indonesia


  • Pulah Weh, Indonesia

Lessons Learned

  • Pack less.
  • Don’t lose your phone overseas
  • Plan less, go with the flow
  • Don’t bring guide books, buy them for your kindle. They add unnecessary weight.
  • Bring 2 accessories for camera. 2 battery chargers, extra O-ring etc… It’s difficult to find in some places.
  • Have extra money for crazy mishaps. Maybe 1,000 to 2,000 over your budget.
  • Carry emergency money
  • Spend a little more for comfort
  • Keep checked in luggage 20 kilos or less
  • Carry-all cameras and batteries in your carry-on bag
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