Planning a research trip is a common component of the doctoral journey. Amongst all PhD, there is only a small proportion that can be written sitting at one place only on the basis of the material that is found online. Travel is important in research for reasons that can be many. It could be to consult archives, do fieldwork or do some collaboration or consultation with colleagues at other locations. You may have to travel more than one time, over the period of the tenure of your PhD or even take up an extended research trip that could last six months or even longer at time, if your PhD so demands.
It is surely not easy to plan such a trip and it may get daunting for reasons more than one. Especially if you have to take up field work or archival consultation, it can be difficult to predict the exact duration of the time that would be needed. Scholars often feel stuck for fighting against the time to finish the work or staying at a different location for long stretches. To further add to it, financial constraints and budget related issues cannot be ignored as if you got to be on field for long, you may have to spend extra and if you have some teaching assignments that give you monetary benefit, you may get deprived of that as well for a while.
So, if you do have to plan a research trip, plan it with utmost care. It is always better to begin with a short exploration trip to the field where you feel you need to be for long. It could help you to understand the requirements and plan your research schedule in greater detail. In all the more typical cases for PhD students, if you field destination is far off from your base point or is a remote location, you may not be able to travel more often and you would go only one time to do the work. Your planning skills are of great help here. Do not ignore important areas such as language skills or research assistance that can become a hurdle if you haven’t sorted it out in advance. Only if you have given your research trip enough and considerable thought before it’s execution can you expect it to be fruitful and worthy otherwise with all the time it will consume, possibilities are it may become a waste of time and may not lead to any kind of growth in your PhD progress.