USA Travel Planning for Australian Travellers

  • It’s best you buy your tickets as soon as you can because waiting and hoping you might save $20 is usually not worth the trouble.
  • Make sure you check out the driving rules in the state you’re visiting and bear in mind they drive on the right.
  • For a country as large as the USA, a week’s vacation won’t be enough to have you visit all the places you want.

The United States of America is the land of many travel opportunity for Australian visitors, from the bright lights of New York City to the movie utopia of Hollywood and the awe of the Grand Canyon.

However you choose to get to know the United States of America, one thing is for sure: this won’t be just another quiet, relaxing vacation. It will be colossal, unforgettable and exciting. So, to help you get started with planning your trip, here are several aspects to bear in mind.

Flying from Australia to the USA

Frying from Australia to the USA might take between 13 to 24 hours, depending on which city you leave from and which one is your final destination and whether it’s a direct flight or with layovers. It’s best you buy your tickets as soon as you can because waiting and hoping you might save $20 is usually not worth the trouble. Having the tickets early on will save you unnecessary stress and headaches in the weeks leading up to your flight and it leaves bigger chances you might get to pick where you want to sit.

Hollywood is a neighborhood in the central region of Los Angeles, California, notable as the home of the U.S. film industry, including several of its historic studios. Its name has come to be a shorthand reference for the industry and the people associated with it.

When it comes to long-distance travel, ditch the idea of looking posh and trendy and rather stick to simple, casual and comfy clothes in neutral colors and loose-fitting layers so you can move around easily. It’s important you stay comfortable on the flight to prevent vein thrombosis so you could opt for compression socks and take a walk through the aisles every couple of hours and it will help with other issues as well, such as fatigue, headache, stiff shoulders and swollen limbs.

To be on the safe side, make sure you pack your little long-haul care bag with a pair of moldable earplugs, a silky sleep mask, a quality neck pillow and a light fabric shawl that can be your fashionable accessory but also a cover.

Make an effort to avoid drinks and food high in sugar, salt or caffeine. Alcohol is not recommended as it can sedate you a bit but it also causes dehydration and staying hydrated is one of your most important concerns. You should drink at least 8 ounces of water every hour.

Once you arrive

Travel experts recommend renting a car upon your arrival as it gives you more freedom of movement and can enhance your experience of sightseeing. Make sure you check out the driving rules in the state you’re visiting and bear in mind they drive on the right. You won’t need an international driving license but bring it, if you have one.

The USA is the home of the biggest movie industry in the world, so you’ll have the opportunity to visit many locations of your favorite iconic movies as well as many historical sights, natural beauties and great museums. Naturally, you’ll be taking a lot of photos to document your visit so it’s extremely helpful to get a USA Sim Card that gives you 5GB of data, 4G data speeds, hotspot/tethering, unlimited calls and text to both US numbers and Australia (landline & mobile). You’ll have 30 days of usage once activated without the need for registration.

Places to visit on the West Coast

The old days of the wild, wild west are long gone, but the West Coast of the USA still offers all the fun you could ever imagine. This is the best place to start your first visit to the country so you might start from Seattle in the north working your way down south and central country.

Seattle, Washington is not only famous as the home of alternative rock and birthplace of many iconic grunge rock bands, but it’s also home to lively coffee culture, art scene and numerous micro-breweries. Further south, there’s San Francisco and its famous Fisherman’s Warf, the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Haight Street and the wavering Lombard Street.

No visit to the west coast can be complete without spending some time in Los Angeles and taking a walk down the Hollywood Boulevard, the Walk of Fame and taking a picture with the Hollywood sign in the background. Also, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the J. Paul Getty Center and the Los Angeles County Museum.

Leaving the coast and heading towards the inland, you’ll come across the infamous Death Valley, the hottest place on earth located some 8 hours’ drive from L.A, between California and Nevada. Another valley worth seeing is the Napa Valley with its superb vineyards and wineries.

And as the list goes on, it takes your from San Diego to Lake Tahoe, Yosemite National Park, the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Portland in Oregon and Las Vegas in Nevada, to mention only several of many great places you can visit.

Stretching nearly 8 miles (12.8 km) from east to west and with gran­ite walls more than twice the height of the Empire State Building, Yosem­ite Valley is one of the wonders of the natural world.

Places to visit on the East Coast

Since the very beginning of the colonization, the East Coast of the United States has been a recognizable symbol of immigration and the birth of a new nation. It offers its historical charm and gives homage to the European heritage that founded the new country and nation. The entire coast abounds in exciting and interesting cities and as well as landscapes and natural sights that tourists love visiting.

New York is probably the most iconic American city where most immigration stories began and even today, it represents the true American dream where all people of all backgrounds can find their place under the sun. The city of bright lights that never sleeps is the home of the famous Wall Street, Freedom Tower, Chrysler Building, Carnegie Hall, Broadway, Statue of Liberty, Central Park and many other famous locations.

Boston, Massachusetts, is one of the oldest cities in the USA and well known for several historical events during the American Revolution, including the Boston Tea Party and the Boston Massacre. Take a walk down the famous Freedom Trail, take a ghost tour and do some shopping along Newbury Street.

Washington D.C., the capital of the USA, is the city that will teach you a real history lesson about the country with its historical monuments, government building, the White House included, and the famous Smithsonian Museum.

Going further south, don’t miss the chance to visit the jazz capital of the world, New Orleans in Louisiana, where you’ll be able to enjoy warm weather and authentic southern dishes before you reach the sunny state of Florida. This state offers amazing clear skies and sunny days throughout the year, fantastic beaches, delicious seafood, fishing, boating, golfing and shopping.

For a country as large as the USA, a week’s vacation won’t be enough to have you visit all the places you want, but since there aren’t any specific and strict tourist visa requirements for Australian citizens, you can always plan your return trip to see the places you missed out.

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Jack Kewell

Jack Kewell is writer, science editor, naturalist, entrepreneur. He is focused on writing and illustrating books. Also, he is a regular contributor on Mountaintechblog

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