When I was asked the big question about my perfect vacation, one of the first places I could think of was Phuket. I have always loved Thailand, and Phuket has one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world, not to mention a huge number of activities that can be undertaken. However, like every trip, this one needs extensive planning. Here’s how I would be doing it. After locating the place I want to go, and getting a basic idea about what I want to see, and how much time I can afford, here are the few quick steps I would take.
Step One: Flights
Admit it, flight tickets suck, especially when you buy them at the last moment. Buying flight tickets a few months (ideally between 2-3 months before going to your destination) before your vacation is the ideal thing to do, and you would find a great number of good International Airlines providing discounts and offers, which can make a great difference to your budget. Once you reach Bangkok, take a second flight to Phuket via a reliable carrier like Thai Airways, or you can always go by the road, but I would suggest going via flight because it really saves a good deal of time.
Step Two: Hotels
I generally book hotels ahead, especially if I am going on an international trip. You would get plenty of great hotels online, and it is easy to find them. I generally go for 3-star and 4-star hotels, and its a good idea to book one offering complimentary breakfast, because that way, you won’t have to think much about one more meal in your day.
Step Three: VISA
VISA on arrival might be a good option for many countries, but, I prefer getting one from India because seriously, after a long flight, you really don’t want to stand in a long line for your VISA. Pay the Thai embassy, take your passport, your VISA would be done in record time.
Step Four: Choosing Activities
Now that I am done with VISA, Flights and Hotels, next step is to choose the activities I would like to do. Although I have a fair idea about what I would like to do, it is important to put them in an order, so that following the schedule becomes easy. For Phuket, I have picked a cabaret show, snorkelling, bungee jumping, and maybe a trip to the local safari. That would be enough for four days, I think!
Step Five: Packing and Exchanging Money
Packing as per the weather is a great idea, and for places like Phuket, plenty of shorts and tank tops are the way to go. I would also be packing swimsuits, sunglasses, sunblock and flip flops… all beach ready. I am also going to spend money mostly via credit/debit card, since the exchange rates are pretty good there. Also, I would be carrying some Thai Baht from my country (and no, never exchange money from the airport, its horrendously bad exchange rates there) and exchange money at the local bank outlets, preferably at a moneychangers. There are many in Phuket.
And yes, that’s about it! Now all I would have to do is to follow these rules, and I would be done!