Alright, I officially am making progress for my trip to South East Asia, and I've got great news:
I've bought my flight tickets to Bangkok! That's right, I've finally done it. It's official, I WILL be traveling this coming summer.
I kept track of prices for awhile and stumbled upon a price war going on between domestic carriers and the asian carriers. Tickets were all sitting at $1500-$1800 round trip, which was putting a big strain on the tight budget that I will have available. My goal was to buy my tickets for under $1200 total for the flights only, what I noticed (through other bloggers pointing this out to me) is that when buying a ticket from the mid-west US, the price is between 1/3 to 2/3 more expensive if you pick up a connecting flight.
Flying from Kansas City: $1500-$1800+
Flying from San Francisco: $1070 (this is the ticket I bought)
I'm planning on picking up either a budget ticket ($230 or less) or a greyhound ticket (currently $230) for a separate round trip to drop me right in SFO or the city in general with plenty of time to get to the airport and time to maybe couch surf a day or two before leaving on the return leg.
I'm leaving May 8th and returning July 10th. My flight transfers in Tokyo (I ended up flying Delta airlines because I wanted to save $200.. might bite me in the bum, but maybe not) and, sadly, I arrive in Thailand around midnight local time. So I'm thinking of relaxing for awhile at a coffee shop or something. (thanks wanderingEarl for that pointer).
So I have my ticket, my passport, backpack, and some of the clothes I want to take. I'm looking into getting my shots here, though I found I can get them at the red cross (aka snake farm) in Bangkok for MUCH less (have heard around $100, which is WAY better than several hundred). So that's where things stand, New backpack update soonish (busy with school, so updates come second, apologies).
Feel free to comment with questions or comments!