I have been planning my third trip to Australia recently and at this point want to share the major steps of my trip preparation with you. This time it is has been slightly different from the previous trips, since I will be travelling with a friend for the first weeks of my australian travel adventure, so there were feedback and arrangements about all aspects and details of the trip… a bit unusual for me… since I am used to travelling on my own, for most of the time.
But apart from this aspect, the trip prologue and the trip planning blueprint is exactly the same to set up the itinerary around Australia.
So how does my travel planning blueprint looks like for my third trip in Australia?
My Travel Blueprint for Australia
- How I booked my flight to Australia….first time flying with Emirates
Once we outlined the time frame for our flight to Australia we started the research online….this time I have been pretty lucky with the flight schedule and the flight booking to Australia. I managed to get an EMIRATES flight to Australia booked, and for the first time, I also managed to get a stopover night at the connection airport in Dubai. This is an excellent news: in fact it’s not easy at all to find a good value flight to Australia along with a stopover night at the connection airport. I travelled twice via Singapore and I could not get it. And for the first time I will be leaving from home too, directly from Venice airport to Dubai and from Dubai off to Melbourne, ah ah, that’s great news indeed.
- Emirates is offering great flight deals to Australia leaving from Europe with excellent flight connections. I am flying Emirates for the first time too, and since I have heard that Emirates is among the most reputable worlwide airlines for service and comfort onboard, I can’t wait to fly and try it out myself. I can highly recommend to check out the Emirates Website and search for flight deals there.
- Which Travel Destinations am I going to see this time…..it will be a bit of déjà vu trip
This time I will have the honour to show Australia to a friend who is returning for the first time to Australia after a long time! So my travel plan for the first weeks will be a sort of “déjà vu trip” for me, re-visiting the iconic destinations and major attractions in Australia. Come back here to see the updates of my day-by-day travel route. Some among the iconic australian destinations that we will be visiting are: the GOR, Ayers Rock and Kings Canyon, The Top End, and major cities like Melbourne, Adelaide, Darwin and more.
- How will I get around Australia? ….this time I will be hiring a car
On my previous trips I loved using the australian public transportation, I covered my entire itineary by bus and by train. This time I will take advantage of having a wonderful travel companion, so for the first time I will be hiring a car for some driving routes. Searching and booking the car has been very easy, and I did it online through oodles.
- My Tip: book ahead of time, 2WD carhire and especially 4WD carhire can be very expensive especially in the Red Centre and in some other australian attraction areas if you wait till the last minute. The sooner you book the better.With this great car rental comparison site we had the advantage of having all our car bookings made with a few clicks, a good time ahead and we did not have to pay upfront. We paid when we picked up our booked cars.This is a checklist for you to go through when booking your car in Australia:
- Weekends opening hours for pick up and drop off be careful in the red centre over weekends you can hire your car only from airports, cities like Alice Springs are usually closed on Saturdays and Sundays. So check it out and before making your reservation and book your connection flight accordingly
- Different drop off from pick up location can be turned into an expensive extra may turn out to be very expensive if you pick up your car in one place and want to drop it off somewhere else. The best thing is to drive in a loop, i.e. same pick up and drop off location. The Ayers Rock drop off can cost you 300,00AUD alone if you
have picked up your car somewhere else. The good thing is to check it out with the car rental company once you have your booking processed.
- Check out whether you are allowed to drive a 2WD or if you need a 4WD. You can only use a 2WD on all sealed road, and 4WD are for gravel roads, even if you are driving on a short unsealed road you are not allowed to use a 2WD. This is a rule for car rentals. If you own your car then you can do whatever you like, i.e. can drive on unsealed roads with a 2WD car too, if you wish to do so.
- Where will I be staying during my trip in Australia ?..yes you have guessed. as usual I will be staying in my fave australian hostels, for most of the time. As for the bookings it is easily made online. Since I am a fan of YHA, I booked in most places directly from their website: www.yha.com.au and for other destinations I checked it out through the hostelbookers.com website. If you book with YHA make sure you have your own YHA membership card to save 3-5dolllars on each night. And bear in mind that you have to pay in advance the full stay. But you also are entitled to cancel your reservation and get a full refund if you cancel 48hours prior your arrival date.
If you instead prefer staying in hotels, B&B or any other kind of accommodation I highly recommed to use this great hotel comparison site. Hotelscombined is the best travel resource worldwide for booking hotels in Australia and worldwide. I always use their tool for all my accommodation bookings.