Around the World without Air Travel – What to Think About
Traveling around the globe is a dream for most people. Meet Niklas Adalberth, who during 2004 visited twenty-five countries in one hundred and forth-three days in the company of his friend Sebastian Siemiatkowski.
In April 2003, Niklas Adalberth and Sebastian Siemiatkowski dug a hole in the ground in Switzerland and buried a bottle of champagne. Six months later they returned to the same place. In the meantime, they had visited a total of twenty-five countries and four continents.
– We decided early on that we would make this journey without ever boarding a flight. And that’s how it turned out, says Niklas Adalberth.
To Niklas Adalberth, a key to a successful trip around the globe is planning.
– We spent two months laying out the travel route.
But as important as being well-formed, according to Niklas Adalberth, is the ability to come up with new solutions when unforeseen difficulties arise.
– When we were about to board a cargo ship that would take us from Sydney to New Zeeland, and then on to Mexico, we arrived an hour late. The ship had already left and there were three weeks before the next one. We simply had to go out and find jobs. It worked out – we were employed as movers and waited for the next ship to depart.
Niklas Adalberth says that in case he would ever make the journey all over again, he would travel in the other direction.
– We went against the current, which resulted in the journey’s taking much longer than if we had gone with it. There’s considerably more shipping going the other direction, but in some ways this made the eastward trip all the more exciting.
In addition, Niklas Adalberth stresses the importance of making a thorough financial assessment before starting out.
– We had each budgeted 50.000 SEK. And we had calculated 34.000 for transportation costs. The remainder was supposed to cover food and lodging. It’s a smart move to travel as much as possible during nights to save on hotel costs.
Making it around the globe on 34.000 SEK would, however, not have been possible if Niklas Adalberth and Sebastian Siemiatkowski had paid for all the passages.
– We hitchhiked a lot in Europe, but also the entire way, coast to coast, in the United States. The best way to find a ride is to go to a gas station. You get rejected a hundred times, but finally you get a yes.
And you also need a little bit of luck. The shipping company, whose boat Niklas Adalberth and Sebastian Siemiatkowski missed, took pity on the guys who had been left waiting in Sydney.
– We were offered considerable reduced tickets on the luxury cruiser Queen Elisabeth II, which took us from New York to Southampton.