This is About Travel Prep

To say that traveling can be expensive is a bit of an understatement. Flights, hotels, food, excursions, souvenirs, budgeting is its own hellscape, but at least you’re prepared to shell out your hard earned, even-harder saved money because it’s all part of it. Unless you’re traveling for more than 2 weeks. To various countries. For the first time.


This was a very rude awakening for yours truly.

And luckily for you, I have very poor manners and I love talking about how much money I spend. So here’s a quick breakdown of things you didn’t realize you had to buy before going on the trip of your dreams! And a few tips on things to consider too, just to pad it out a bit.

  1. SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS!SHOTS! EVERYBODY! (No need to check that I wrote the exact number of times ‘shots’ as it’s said in LMFAO ft. Lil Jon’s classic love song ‘Shots’ because I DID. Also RIP LMFAO, the greatest uncle-nephew duo that ever was.)
    • Newsflash: The rest of the world has a lot of viruses and bacteria that our soft North American bodies aren’t used to. Things that can be incredibly dangerous in South East Asia alone: Malaria, Hep A, Hep B, Tetanus, Diphtheria, TB, MMR, Polio, Japanese Encephalitis, Cholera, Typhoid Fever, Yellow Fever and everyone’s newest friend ZIKA! Oh, and also, just… regular fucking diarrhea. Here in Canada, we’re hashtag: blessed to have the health care that we do and we got a bunch of these immunizations already. But guess what’s not covered by OHIP, bbs. Travel doctors! Not only do you have to pay for the vaccines you need, but for the appointment itself. The cost will depend entirely on where you’re traveling to, and for my trip, I ended up getting Hep A, Typhoid, and Dookie Roll (I will never not call it by its real name because WHY WOULD I), and I also got a flu shot and a tetnus booster because I was due for them anyway. Oh also antibiotics! And don’t get Cipro, because that shit doesn’t work in Asia. Azithromycin 4 Lyfin.
      • Approximate cost: $250ish (not including the Azithro – I had those already)
  2. Visas
    • I’m not a total doy-oy. I know that lots of countries require visas and at a cost, but I’d argue most people don’t think about this as part of their travel budget. Anyway, do your work and look up not only if the place you’re going to requires a visa, but also if you need to get it in advance, and also the departure tax. Sometimes it’s included in the price of your flight, but sometimes it’s not.
    • Also some visas require you to have a passport photo. Laos, I’m talking about you. So you know, make sure you have all your necessary documents.
      • Approximate cost: $100ish USD (so… like $200000000 CAD)
  3. Rain coat
    • I honestly can’t talk too much about this particular fact because it makes me incredibly angry that I have to get one at all. I’ve survived over 30 years without owning one. But I concede that I’ve lived in a place that doesn’t have a wet season for over 20, so I’m sure even if I only use it once, I’ll be happy I got it. JK JK JK I’LL MUTTER ANGRILY ABOUT HOW I COULD’VE JUST USED A GARBAGE BAG.
      • Approximate cost: $70
  4. First Aid Kit
    • I suppose I could’ve lumped this in with shots since it does all fall under the same umbrella (THAT I’LL PROBABLY HAVE TO GET ANYWAY BECAUSE RAIN COATS ARE STUPID AND DON’T COVER THE PART THAT’S THE MOST ANNOYING TO GET WET: THE FACE). Look, safety is important. It is always worth the money to be safe, and that includes little health things too. I’m gonna be in at least one jungle, some beaches and maybe three or four rice paddies, I’m bound to step on something sharp. I just spent $250 on shots; I for sure don’t wanna die because I got a goddamn staph infection while trying to take a cute beach selfie. Things to consider packing: bandaids, medical tape, polysporin, alcohol wipes, pain killers, motion sickness pills, sleeping aids, antihistamines, poo poo pills (for too much or not enough poo pooing), bug repellant, After bite, aloe vera, compression socks for the flight. Things I should probably get but haven’t: water purification pills.
      • Approximate cost: $200ish (As part of a huge Shopper’s haul which was all necessities for my trip like a face mask for my flight)
  5. Water Shoes
    • These are my favourite fucking purchase and no one can ever shame me for this. I don’t care how dorky they look, they are SO comfortable and a better alternative to schlepping in flip flops in the sand.
      • Approximate cost: $50ish
  6. Misc Travel Shit
    • What the fuck is a dry bag? I don’t know, but I bought 3 of them. Also bought packing cubes to help keep my bag tidy and manageable. Bag locks, a microfibre towel, travel pillow, plug adapter, water-proof cases for my phone and iPad, a phone case that features a strap so my phone can be attached to my person while I’m holding it, mini tripod for my phone, a remote so that I can take pictures using my phone and new tripod. I never really had a use for these things until now, and buying it all just makes me want to go on another trip so I use them more than once.
      • Approximate cost: $100ish

GRAND TOTAL: $770ish

And I haven’t even left the goddamn country.

Now, don’t get it twisted. I happily purchased all of these because I knew if I wanted to travel smart, I’d have to be prepared and being prepared for shit makes me HORNT UP. So while these were unexpected costs, by no means do I believe them to be superfluous, unnecessary or not worth it (except for that FUCKING RAIN COAT). Because there is no price too high to pay for my safety and comfort. You could consider it a form of self-love, if you wanna get all self-affirming about it. And I DO so I WILL.


Anyway. One more week and I’m for sure shitting my pants. THANKS, DOOKIE ROLL!

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