Traveler's Hipster

I'm going to be doing some traveling in the near future (just a tame mini-tour of southern Europe) but it sparked this idea for me. I'd have little use for my usual hipster kit (seen here http://www.diyplanner.com/node/297) but my obssesive nature would still require some planning. This is what I've thought of off the top of my head.

-Monthly pages for each month I'll be gone, with important stuff like when I have to be somewhere specific (I think a daily or even weekly page is overdoing it, I'm trying to be spontaneous here)
-A contact list with local numbers (I'll be visiting people I've never met before) and email addresses from home
-Maps of places I know I'll be (London and Paris for example) including train stations, hostels and public transit information
-Lists of things I'd like to see (with room to add)
-General blank pages, because you can never have enough of them

If I were traveling somewhere completely foreign where I didn't speak the language I'd include some phrase sheets in the kit too (I speak fluent English and German and my French isn't bad, so this doesn't apply here). I will also definatly be carrying a Moleskine journal to record my trip.

I'll probably leave my wallet-planner behind and use a good old binder ring for this one. Or maybe I'll make some kindof cool case for it... yes that sounds like a good idea... (starts rooting through craft boxes).

Any feedback from people who've used a hipster like this or generally have any good/interesting/funny ideas?

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Sounds like a great

Sounds like a great idea!

I've nothing to add to the organization, but whenever I travel I buy tons of picture postcards. Not only do they always have better images of the big attractions than I can hope to take, but I use them for as a travel journal. Start with the date AND time and jot down whatever you're doing/seeing/being struck by. Go wild -- fill up five or ten or more in a day. Describe what you had for lunch in detail, and the cute little kid feeding his lunch to the dog under the table. Stick on a stamp and mail them whenever you pass a post box.

After a trip you'll still have to develop the photos you took (generally of smaller places and people you met) and write up memories about them, but a good proportion of your travel 'journal' is already done, and with a level of freshness and detail you could never match doing it later on.

Sure, you can get the same result by writing in a moleskin or other journal, but having all the picture postcards 'tied' to the daily memories is extra. BTW, I've actually never had a single postcard fail to show up, though one took over six weeks!

Three points if you want to try this:

1) Make sure you have a notebook/envelope large enough to hold & protect the unsent cards, so you can keep them at hand for whenever you want to write.

2) Buy a ton of the right denomination postage stamps just as soon as you arrive.

3) Be ABSOLUTELY SURE whatever pen you use has waterproof ink. IOW, no fountain pens or gel pens!

Have fun!

That's something I would

That's something I would definatly recommend to any traveller as well. Of course for my self that's not such an appealing idea. I'm a photographer so I tend to have to take pictures of everything myself anyway. And I have no desire to have 'touristy' pictures. My style tends to focus much more on details and a more human connection. And as for the pens, I tend to use regular ball points or a space pen for everything but art projects, but that's something i didn't even think of, smart thinking!

Could go either way

Well, that could go either way, really. I've done two major trips and the first time I planned nothing and had a lot of difficulties and the second time I planned everything to the wire and then ended up not following my plan at all. Hmm, I don't seem to be very good at this:P Maps would definately be handy, as I found that one of my most time-consuming activities in Europe (especially London), was walking around randomly all day, trying to find things. Trying to find things is, quite frankly, somewhat less interesting than actually finding things. Call me narrow-minded if you must.

Maybe an in-between kind of planning, a general idea, but leaving lots of room for following unexpected whims. That should work fine in Southern Europe. I wouldn't recommend it in, say, the Middle East or Sub-Saharan Africa.

Have a good time, sounds like a blast:P

Steve Sharam
www.whenrealityknocks.com