Planning for a group trip

Many years ago, a group of us decided to visit New Zealand for our graduation trip. The big idea was to tour both islands in 2 weeks, free and easy by driving ourselves around, ie 1 week per island. After checking the approximate price for air tickets, hotels, and expenses over there, in the end there were 6 of us. We knew it was not going to be easy to plan for a group trip. We identified some roles and assigned them among us.

1) Drivers. 3 of us could drive, so they would take turns.

2) Navigators. The other 3 would take turns to be the navigator. The navigator would sit beside the driver and alert the driver on the roads to take, exits, and turnings.

3) Treasurer. We set up a pool and the treasurer was in charge of the money matters. The money would be used for paying the car expenses (mainly rental, insurance, fuel, and parking), admission fees to the various attractions, and meals. We paid the hotels by credit card so that we need not carry too much cash with us.

4) Planner A. This person would plan the route to take when travelling within the city or from one city to another city, also how to reach the sightseeing places we wanted to visit. We would arrive in Auckland and fly out from Christchurch 2 weeks later. So this person would need to plan the route so that we would reach Christchurch 2 weeks later. There was no GPS at that time. The crucial part of this role would be to estimate the time needed to reach the destinations.

5) Planner B. This person would research on the various sightseeing places, be it along the route and within the cities we would visit. He would need to work closely with Planner A. This role fell on me. At that time the internet was not as advanced and there were not many travel-related websites (to upload a digital photo would require scanning the photo first). I grabbed the travel guides from the library, identified attractions of various types (nature, museums, animals, sights, and so on), and discussed with the group. It was not easy to please everyone as some wanted to see this, some wanted more of that. After a few revisions and meetings, we finally decided on the places to visit

Sometimes things did not go that well, eg losing our way, unable to find the hotel, travelling time took longer than expected, and certain attractions were not as great as the travel guides wrote. But I would say it was still an enjoyable and memorable trip.

 

#newzealand #planning #grouptrip

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