After looking at our financials and talking it through the weekend, we realized that we would be in a better position (financially) to start our journey at the beginning of year 2010 rather than in November of this year; reasons being:
- We get to continue earning and saving for 2 more months, which could, hopefully, include a year-end bonus.
- It gives us more time in case our US passports get delayed for any reason.
- It gives us more time to obtain the Person of Indian Origin certificate from the Indian embassy (this will ensure that we don’t need a visa to travel or stay in India).
- November and December have a lot of holidays and these would help us in our planning/preparation for the trip.
The main downside to this is that now we have to wait for 8 whole months for the trip to start instead of just 6 months. Given that I (and Madhu, too) think about this every waking minute, it’s going to be a long and painful wait…
Yesterday I started a spreadsheet that lists each city/area that we would like to visit along with info like sights to see, best time of the year to visit, where to stay and how many days to stay. This will give us an idea of how many days it would take to see all the must-see sights in India and also help us plan a rough travel route. I spent a couple of hours on this and managed to get thru just Delhi, Amritsar, Chandigarh and a few places in Himachal – this little tour itself would take us about 30 to 35 days – and this does not include the ‘days of lazing at pretty places’ that Madhu and I hope to do!!! At this rate it will definitely take us more than a year to see just India – yippee!!!
Madhu has started costing out the trip as well – he has been looking at hotel rates online to get a better sense of what we’ll spend on lodging as that will be the most expensive part of our travel. If we stay with friends and family wherever possible, then we may even spend less or travel more. Food will be the cheapest – I’m sooo looking forward to all the yummy food…
It’ll be interesting to see how off-target we go when we actually start our travel… I’ll be sure to blog about it, though.