Frequently Asked Questions about the World By Road
The Expedition Team
What is the main purpose of the expedition?
The main purpose of the expedition is to show our audience a view of the world that they might not necessarily get from conventional media outlets. We are striving to maintain objective views about the people and places we interact with and are not attempting to “sell” a story. Therefore, the audiences’ experience is a realistic as possible. In the end, we hope to inspire others to go out and explore the world on their own.
What makes your expedition unique?
The World by road is unique in that it is one of the most ambitious expeditions of its kind in terms of the number of countries visited and the number of miles covered. Additionally, because our overall goal is to try and educate and inspire others to go out and explore the world around them, we will be highlighting not only the humanitarian/environmental/social aspects of the countries we visit, but also the diversity and beauty of the natural environment though participation in a wide range of adventure activities. We also have an interactive website which will enable people to follow us around the world.
Will you be helping others along the way and how?
Originally, we wanted to get our “hands dirty” with a lot of the aid projects and organizations we will be visiting along our journey. However, given our timeframes for certain locations, it may or may not be feasible to physically help out. One of the best ways we felt we could help these organizations was by promoting the work that they are doing through the media outlets we have arranged. Whether it is a magazine article, video clips on our site or Current T.V., or being featured in our documentary, we hope added exposure will be of benefit to these organizations. Of course, if feasible, we also want to physically help out when possible.
What kinds of activities will you be doing?
Between the three of us, we have a wide range of experience in a variety of adventure sports. Our itinerary takes us through some spectacular natural surroundings and we will strive to take our audience even closer. Whether it is climbing in the high mountains of the Himalayas, diving pristine reefs in northern Australia and everything in-between, we have either planned it, or will be open to the option. We also want to try out new things including the potential to go paragliding in Jordan and Israel.
The Expedition Team
Who are you guys?
We are three active individuals interested in finding out more about what our world has to offer. We come from a broad range of professional backgrounds including finance, graphic design and public administration. We also have a wide range of qualifications and hobbies such as canyoneering guiding, Ironman triathlons and of course traveling.
How are you guys going to manage living out of a car for two years without killing each other?
Steve and Steve have been room mates since college (nearly 7 years) and we met Duane on the internet so he has got to be o.k. Besides, with two cars, we can always isolate a troublemaker and force them to drive by themselves.
What do your family and friends think about the expedition?
Our families have surprisingly been our biggest supporters. They realize that this is something we have wanted to do for a long time and are supportive of that. They are obviously concerned about our safety, but trust that we will make educated choices while we are on the road. Our friends have also been supportive, although many of them are sad to see us go for such a long time. However, with our website and media exposure, you are never more than a mouse-click away from us!
Are you guys single?
All of us are either currently single or will be by the time we leave. For some reason girls don’t want to wait 2 years while we drive around the world and evolve into completely different individuals.
Are you guys going to date girls along the way?
Don’t ask stupid questions.
How long have you been planning this expedition?
The expedition team has been actively planning the expedition for over a year and planning will continue while we are on the road. Since we will not be visiting some of the countries on the route for over a year, arranging contact with some of the organizations we hope to visit and activities we hope to participate in will have to wait.
What types of sacrifices have you made in order to participate in this expedition.
Each of the expedition members had made some personal sacrifices in order to go on this expedition. We have had to quit jobs, end relationships and leave friends, family and pets behind. Ultimately, we hope the sacrifices we have made will be far outweighed by the cultural and personal experiences we will have over the course of the expedition.
What kinds of permits are required for a trip such as this?
A - We have to obtain several different types of permits. In addition to personal entry and exit visas which will total over $2,000 each, we have to obtain certain documents related to our vehicles such as a Carnet de Passage (guarantee we will not sell the vehicle for profit in a given country) and special permits issued by the local government to gain access into typically restricted areas such as Myanmar and portions of eastern India.
What kind of insurance do you need for this trip?
Given the countries we are traveling to and more importantly, the activities we plan on doing along the way, health insurance is a necessity. Health insurance must also carry with it provisions for medical evacuation so that if we end up getting ourselves in too much trouble, we can be flown by air ambulance to the nearest trauma center to get patched up. Insurance policies also offer KRE riders (Kidnap, Ransom, Extortion) but we consider ourselves low profile individuals (we are not oil executives or political operatives) and not really worth that much, so I think we will pass on that expensive addition.
Are you going to come home at all during the trip?
At this point, no. One of the things that makes our trip unique is that it is a continuous expedition. Obviously there may be a need to go home if something serious comes up, but we are not anticipating that. Hopefully, our friends and family will want to come and meet up with us in a place that is far more interesting.
Are you worried about disease?
Given where the expedition is traveling and how long we will be on the road, it is likely that we will deal with sickness, but we have taken many precautions to avoid disease. Steve Bouey just finished his third round of vaccinations (15 shots in total) and in conjunction with common sense, should be well protected.
What if you get sick in an area that is not near medical facilities?
Although we are not anticipating any major problems with our health, there is always the remote possibility that one of will get something worse than a bad case of indigestion. All of us have first aid training and some advanced field medical training as well. We will also be traveling with state-of-the-art medical kits that go far and beyond what you would find at the local drug store. If one of us gets sick to the point of requiring more advanced medical attention, we do have our own vehicles. Therefore, we won’t have to wait for a bus or other help to come find us and most likely will be no more than a day’s drive from help.
Are you worried about your own personal safety?
For the most part, no. We have done an extensive amount of research and planning into the locations we are going to and although there are a few “hot spots” the overall itinerary is relatively safe. The combination of guides and information from the aid organizations we will interact with will also help us to make decisions about what specifically we can do to maximize our safety in potentially dangerous areas.
Aren’t you afraid of getting kidnapped, killed, diseases, etc.?
It all goes back to using common sense. Sure we are going to be taking some risks, but they key point is that they are calculated risks and we are doing our homework in this area. We want this trip to be a success, and a good dose of common sense, which seems to be in surprisingly short supply these days, will go a long way towards ensuring that.
What type of equipment are you bringing along?
Since we are traveling by car and want to have room for people to meet up with us along the way, we can’t bring everything we would like to on the expedition. Most of our equipment will consist of camping gear (since we plan on camping a good portion of the time), photo and video equipment to document our experiences, some basic adventure equipment such as climbing ropes and harnesses, first aid equipment, and maybe some Ripboards. For a majority of the activities we will be doing, we will be renting or borrowing that equipment on location.
What type of camera equipment will you bring?
We will be taking a variety of equipment along in order to document to the best degree possible the people and places we encounter. For still photography, have a range of camera bodies from basic point and shoot models to professional grade SLR cameras which will enable us to capture a wide variety of images in a wide variety of conditions. As for video, we plan on shooting the documentary in High Definition and therefore will be using prosumer HD cameras of varying sizes to produce both land and underwater video content.
How are you going to upload pictures and videos?
We will have satellite data transmission capabilities. Although we are choosing not to get satellite voice capability, we will have the ability to transfer data both ways via satellite.
Will you be editing video along the way?
Yes, or else we may find ourselves in a bit of trouble with our media outlets. We will be bringing a portable CPU workstation to edit material and maintain expedition data.
Where are you going?
See our route map.
How long do you anticipate the journey taking?
We estimate that the expedition will take approximately 24 months and we plan on spending at least 10 days in each country, although several variables may effect our actual length of stay.
What variables would affect your length of stay in a country?
Several variables may affect our length of stay including weather, political environment, safety and the overall size of a country.
Are there any timeframes you must keep?
Another goal of the expedition is to remain as flexible as possible and to be available to explore areas and interact with people that we may not have anticipated. There are, however, a few macro-level timeframes we want to keep, most of them being seasonal. There are certain parts of the world we do not want to be during certain times of the year due to weather. For example, we don’t want to be driving across Siberia in the middle of winter nor driving in India during monsoon season.
What countries are you most worried about?
I would not say we are really worried about any of the countries on our route. We are first and foremost, curious and excited. Obviously there are some countries that require a little bit more planning and research before traveling to, and if there is a concern, we will make a group decision about whether to move on. There are also some places where logistically, we have a few alternative options in place if our original plans do not work out.
Since you are driving around the world, how to you plan to deal with the oceans?
For the most part, our route avoids large stretches of water, although we have planned to ship the vehicles via overseas containers at 4 key junctures in the expedition: Los Angeles to New Zealand, New Zealand to Australia, Australia to Indonesia, and South Africa to Argentina. For the remainder of the expedition, we will be able to get by on local ferries when needed.
Will you have guides helping you out?
Yes. In certain countries such as Myanmar and China we are required to have a government approved guide in the vehicle with us. In other countries, guides will not only help us to identify culturally and geographically significant areas but also help to maintain as safe an environment as possible.
Will you be camping or staying in hotels?
We really want to live as close to the local culture as possible. As such, we will most likely spend the majority of our time camping or staying in local communities. Obviously, big cities are part of a country’s culture as well, so we will be staying in some hotels and hostels. We have also planned on writing quite a bit of travel articles for various magazines and in addition to web traffic, will hopefully get us some free beds to crash on.
Why are you driving cars around the world?
The decision to use cars comes from our desire to truly explore the countries we are traveling through. By having our own means of transportation we are not constrained by the timetables of trains or buses or their routes. Additionally, the first impression of a country and experiencing it by driving across a land border can be far different than simply arriving there by airplane. It is the view of a country that mainstream travelers may not experience that we really want to showcase throughout the expedition.
Why are you driving 4x4’s?
The decision to use vehicles with a good off-road capability also stems from our desire to have as much freedom as possible. We want the ability to go on roads less traveled, and have the ability to access parts of the country that may not be accessible by a standard vehicle. We also want the ability to carry a reasonable amount of gear and equipment. Besides, those six-foot deep potholes on the road to Tangiers can really wreak havoc on your average grocery grabber.
What about vehicle insurance?
Believe it or not, there are companies out there that offer international vehicle insurance and insurance specifically designed for expeditions such as this. It is obviously a little more expensive than your E-surance policy, but if we get into a wreck (which is probable) or have other auto problems (which is a guarantee) we are not totally out of luck.
Are you guys going to pick up hitchhikers?
We are open to having people we meet along the way travel with us in the vehicles, although we will have strict policies that must be followed (no exceptions) if we do extend that invitation. It is not worth jeopardizing the entire expedition, or our lives for that matter, because someone we met in a hostel in Australia thought it would be o.k. to carry a joint in their pocket as we crossed over into Indonesia.
How are you funding the expedition?
We are funding the expedition through a variety of methods. Product and financial support from sponsors, revenue from media content and articles as well as personal savings and donations are all playing a role in funding the trip.
What kind of sponsors are you looking for?
Our trip caters to a wide audience. As a result, there are several potential products and services that we can showcase throughout the course of our expedition. Everything from vehicles, to travel services, logistics companies to clothing and camera equipment… the expedition offers a unique opportunity for a wide variety of companies to gain exposure.
How can I help?
There are several ways that you can help ensure the success of the expedition. Following the expedition as it unravels on our website and spreading the word about what we are doing is one simple thing. We are also looking for information related to the countries we are traveling to and the people who live there. For example, if you lived in a certain country or region or perhaps served in the Peace Corps or know someone who did or know of any other contacts that might be interesting to meet up with, we would love to hear from you. Finally, we have a donation page where you can contribute to the expedition. No donation is too small and we appreciate any help you are willing to provide.
Can I join the expedition?
We get many requests for people to come along on the expedition and obviously, we can’t bring everyone, but we are open to having people travel with or along side us on various legs of the expedition. Follow this link to find out more.