Tips for Planning The Perfect Trip

This story happened on: 03/03/2018

It's that time of year again - when we're all thinking of where to go and what to do with our hard-won holiday time, so I thought that I would bring a few ideas to the planning process! 

“Choose an arbitrary purpose and stick to it!” - Tony Wilson

The meaning of life was never clear to me until I read this quote from the late Tony Wilson, TV Reporter, founder of Factory Records and The Hacienda nightclub in Manchester.

An arbitrary purpose is also worth keeping in mind when you are planning your travels. “So much world. So little time!” is the perennial problem faced by anyone planning a tour - so how do you narrow down a WHOLE WORLD of experience into something manageable?

Well here, let me help!


“Time and tide wait for no man.” - Chaucer, Shakespeare - and Anon!

A traveller always wants more time. Time is a scarce commodity, so spend it well.

In times past, our trip planning was simple; fit the largest number of far-flung adventures into 2 week slices of leave from work. Although we have abandoned the world of work, family and other commitments do mean that we pop back to Blighty every now and again to visit those we love. So even for us, travel time is limited.

Clearly, time dictates how far afield you can realistically get on one trip.

My advice on this is is not to be too ambitious. Don’t try to pack in too much, otherwise your trip will be all about driving past lots of roses, never enjoying their scent and missing out on everything else that lives and grows in rose fields!


"Bizarre travel plans are dancing lessons from God.” – Kurt Vonnegut

Poring over a map is one of the best ways of tailoring your route exactly as you want it, with diversions and excursions to whatever points of interest may attract you along the way.

These days, of course, online route planning makes things considerably easier, with detailed routes illustrated at the mere click of a button.

We have found Scribble Maps to be an invaluable resource. Not only can you plan where to go, you can mark potential campsites and places of interest (with added notes!) on your own personalised route maps! 


“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do." - Mark Twain

There are plenty of groups which list approved and inspected campsites. For UK adventures, we are members of the Caravan and Motorhome Club (and the other one!)

In Europe, we use ACSI, which lists, rates and offers reviews of nearly 10,000 sites, giving clear details of the facilities available at each one. The associated ACSI Camping Card offers off-season discounts.

We prefer not to book campsites. This gives us flexibility to change our plans and move on if, in spite of our careful research, we don't like the look of things when we get there. (This has happened a couple of times.)

However, in peak times, in popular places - or if it's a very long way to the next campsite - booking is probably worthwhile!


“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” – Susan Sontag

To read the full details on how to decide WHERE, check out my blog, which will give you many tips;

  • Choose a Theme
  • Classic Routes
  • Recommendations
  • Go Where No-one Has Gone Before!
  • I've Always Wanted To...
  • Be Subject to Change Without Notice
  • Don't Discount Your Doorstep


"We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time." - T. S. Eliot

Be warned. Travel is highly addictive. If you ever think that you're a travel addict on the road to recovery think again. The only road that you're likely to be on is the one to your next adventure.

We thought that we may tour for a couple of years but the more you see, the more you see that there is always more to see! At the last count, Mark has 13 years of trips planned out. And even then, we won't have finished Europe...



chasncath commented on 05/03/2018 23:35

Commented on 05/03/2018 23:35

I'm still not sure why you came on here with this pretentious contribution, complete with educational 'quotes', given that much of your 'advice' is freely available elsewhere on this forum. If there was a 'dislike' button on here, I would have pressed it!

Just so others can judge, I've found your 'Blog' and here's the link


deaness commented on 09/03/2018 06:45

Commented on 09/03/2018 06:45

I really don't see the need for rude comments. This is supposed to be a friendly club and we need to encourage contributions, not deter members.

River Clyde commented on 02/04/2018 19:38

Commented on 02/04/2018 19:38

Thank you, Marl.  My husband and I are planning our first trip abroad in our m/h.  Your comments are all very relevant to us as we make plans, change our minds, agree, disagree........all in the one night. laughing Regards, Jac

Strawberry Pirate commented on 10/04/2018 11:06

Commented on 10/04/2018 11:06

Just bought our van -  collect next month - virgin motorhomers. So excited to be planning our first trip - probably one night away close to home 'just in case...'. and to test things out.Then two weeks in France to cut our teeth before a trans Scandinavian/Russian/East & Western Europe tour. Excited doesn't even cut it! Little bit frightened - not of the touring - but of driving such a huge (to me) vehicle. Will post a pic when we collect the van. Looking forward to following all your adventures this year. 

RGR2 commented on 09/07/2018 00:39

Commented on 09/07/2018 00:39

I suspect I would spend so much time planning that getting away in the van would never happen!!

To correct you on one detail, the meaning of life is, of course, 42. 

Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy