Know what to expect on your trip. Enquire about the accommodations and food. Find out about the group size and about the gender, age and ability level of fellow travellers. Some companies offer adventure tours geared to families or to specific groups based on age, gender or physical ability.
Assess the skills as well as the physical and mental stamina that will be required of you for the trip. Carefully evaluate your level of preparedness. Consult your physician and provide details about what you plan to do. Respect your personal capabilities. Your body will already be under stress from time and climate changes, unfamiliar food and a different environment. If needed, upgrade your skills. If that is not possible, don’t go.
Talk to people who have similar interests and similar physical abilities to your own, and who have experience with this kind of travel.
Choose a company experienced in the type of adventure travel you’re interested in and research their track record. Such companies should:
Provide rating systems indicating the difficulty level and the risks.
Employ good risk management practices.
Gave a good cancellation policy.
Offer guides who speak the local language and are trained in first aid.
Find out if your destination is dangerous in either physical or political terms. In many countries there is political instability, police and judicial corruption, an ongoing war, insurgencies or sporadic unrest. Tourists can be lucrative targets for kidnappers. A wilderness expedition in such an environment is risky and foolhardy.
Detail what equipment and clothing you’ll need. Take a medical kit, toiletries, and enough money to get you through an emergency. And remember that the longer you’re going to be on your feet, the heavier your bag will become.
Buy comprehensive health, travel and life insurance. Many insurance policies do not cover activities that involve risk such as scuba diving, skydiving or even snorkelling. Always carry evidence of your insurance with you.