6 questions to ask yourself before you plan a trip

The world is your oyster and with so many destinations and experiences to choose from it can be overwhelming to make a decision. Planning a trip is fun and exciting, but it can also be a huge task which can cause stress and anxiety. We all have personal goals and values in life, so when it comes to identifying what those are in a travel-related capacity, where do we start?


For years we have been sold ideas on where is best to go and what the current trends are, which although it is not the worst thing in the world (and actually some inspiration from others can lead to amazing discoveries), this influence has meant that our personal power to choose based on our own unique wants and needs has been in the hands of others, instead of in our own. 

The Covid-19 pandemic shone a light on the darkest parts of humanity and with serious discussions around sustainable travel and eco-friendly energy, it would seem that Great Travel Reset also asks for individuals to regain their personal power and be the change they want to see in their own personal world, and the wider, global community. 

As a travel coach, I have a responsibility to ensure that I am actively helping others to find their voice and discover the essence of their own dreams and life mission. In this article, I am going to share with you six powerful questions that will reshape the way you plan your trip and put the power of choice back into the palms of your hands. 

1. What matters to you the most concerning this trip?

A surface-level response to this may be to say something along the lines of I want to relax or meet new people, which of course are true statements. However, I would encourage you to go deeper with this question and ask yourself, why do you want to relax? What is happening in your life at the moment that is causing you to need to ‘get away’ to relax? What is it about meeting new people that feels so enticing?

When you respond to this question, stating what matters the most, try to take this one step further to get to the root of the matter. Think of your first answer in a similar way to a Russian Doll. These wooden dolls all vary in size, with each one designed to fit inside each other. When you ask yourself open-ended questions like this, imagine that inside your answer is another answer, one that gets you closer to that liberating authenticity. 

This is where the value of working with a coach comes into play. Through non-directive, collaborative conversation, they take you through a thought-provoking and creative process which will lead you to a place where you can begin to understand your own wants, needs and emotional drives so that you can make decisions and choices right for you.

2. What is it specifically that you want to achieve? 

Whilst flicking through Instagram posts and travel websites is exciting and inspiring, I would urge you to really reflect upon the activities and interests that give you the tingles and make your heart sing.

By asking yourself what you want to achieve, you are setting an intention which can then become one of your goals. Remember, in addition to thinking about different sights, places and experiences, it is equally important to address areas of growth that you would like to work on. For example, do you want to gain confidence in communicating with others? Perhaps you want to work on strengthening your emotional intelligence by overcoming challenges or adjusting to a difference in language and culture.

3. Describe your ideal day

This is less of a question and more of a request to describe a picture of what you see in your mind. Imagine you are in a place - don’t try to force yourself to know where it is, just let the images and sounds develop naturally within. What is happening, where are you and how are you feeling? When you describe your personal desires in great detail, you start to build up a true reflection of your life vision which you can use in the waking world as a roadmap to follow! 

I would like to share with you an example of my ideal day...

My ideal day begins in a bustling souk somewhere in Morocco, possibly Marrakech. The market is packed with sellers and buyers and my senses are ignited with the sounds, smells and sights that remind me of the magical journey of Santiago from the popular novel, The Alchemist

As I meander through the stalls in 26-degree heat, admiring the vast assortment of goods on sale including spices, herbs, incense, and traditional Moroccan crafts, I can’t help but be in awe of the artisanal activities and rich cuisine that this country offers. 

In the evening, after sampling some local dishes at the street food market, I will head to Jema el-Fna’a square to drink tea and experience the Moroccan tradition of hikayat, also known as – the storytellers. This incredible art form has been around for over a thousand years, infusing music, comedy and topical subjects into long tales in Arabic and in English.

I know that this day will expand my awareness by introducing me to a lifestyle and history that is so far from anything I have experienced before. Here, I will learn how Moroccans live and love, which I will keep in my heart, with pieces of every trip I’ve been on, for the rest of my life. 

4. What is the deeper meaning or personal significance that this trip has for you?

We are all here on our own journey through life. We all have different values and dreams that help us to clarify who we are as a person and what our personal life goals and overall purpose is. When you lose sight of this vital information about yourself, you’ll allow other people and environments to direct the course that your life takes, which will ultimately affect the outcomes too. This leads to a sense of feeling unfulfilled, left behind and even having regrets.

Can you look back at your life and see the moments where you know you didn’t specifically want it but somehow you went down that path anyway? When it comes to thinking about your trip, try to find the significance and importance that is personal to you and you alone. 

5. What impact or influence do you want to have on the places that you visit?

Everywhere we go and with everyone we meet, we leave a part of our essence behind. This is in the words that we speak, the actions we take and the intentions that we carry with us through life. Very few people actually see and understand the impact that their presence has on other people and communities. Small acts of kindness and simple information we share can have a ripple effect that spreads far beyond what you can imagine.

You don’t have to change the whole world with one idea, you just need to have a vision of what impact or influence you will have whilst there and what that in turn will leave behind.

6. What do you need to do right now in order to make this trip a reality? 

Goals are worked towards, so what do you see as the first step to accomplishing your travel goal? The questions asked above are designed to help you to identify your true desires and your reason for wanting them, and now you are armoured with this valuable knowledge of self, what is the next step to take in making this a reality? Do you need to save money? Create a budget? Research some destinations? Or maybe you want to tackle self-confidence issues or fears holding you back? Find out what your next step is and take action. At this point, you may want to also ask yourself who might you ask for help?

A travel adventure is exciting and liberating at any stage of life. Whether you are a student, a professional taking a sabbatical or a retired person seeking an escapade, or anyone in between, travel can give you the opportunity to connect with a part of you that has yet to be revealed. Find your why and do it with intention. 

Coaching is about you, discovering what you need and how you go about getting it, so if you think you need some help with this then get in touch - I specialise in travel coaching!

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Life Coach Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Aldershot GU11 & London SW1X
Written by Chloe Gosiewski, Professional Marketing and New Business Coach
Aldershot GU11 & London SW1X

Chloe is a professional coach working with individuals, groups and couples who are specifically wanting to work on goals that are related to travel experiences. She is an experienced world traveller, including solo backpacking, group holidays and remote working in various countries. She is also a TEDx speaker and a huge dog lover!

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