Here are some tips and truths about travelling that will help you out on your journey.
1. The World isn’t as Scary as its been made out to be
I strongly believe we’ve been hugely influenced by the information we get fed via media outlets whether that be the portrayal of war, nuclear weapons and lies and deceit from governments this is the only information that gets reported on about the world we live in. If this is all that we see then it’s no wonder that the world seems like a horrible place. However what doesn’t make the headlines and what doesn’t make for “interesting news” are the people who help without being asked and point you in the right direction when you wander out into the street with map in hand (This happened to me in Japan, neither of us spoke the same language). Or the hilarious conversations you try to have with made up sign language because neither of you can communicate with words (Me trying to communicate with a Chinese tour group onboard, simply asking if they wanted milk in their tea which turned into a full game of charades with them “air milking a cow”). Or the the times when you taste authentic cultural food and realise it is nothing like what you’d get back home (When I tasted authentic Turkish food while in Turkey, the stews and the tasty sweet treats were out of this world delicious). Even down to how different a sunset can look around the world (The sunset in Santorini looks like it gets swallowed whole by the ocean).
Yes there are parts of the world experiencing major hardships and troubled times but that shouldn’t deter you for a second. What we see through the media is a 10% snap shot of the entire picture with the other 90% left to discover like the,
You’re a fool if you solely listen and base your world view on media perspective, I promise the world is a lot less scary then it’s been made out to be.
2. It okay to be a typical tourist
I feel like there’s a stigma attached to the word “tourist” now and unless you’re discovering hidden gems or sitting cliff side you aren’t having a meaningful travel experience. This is in large part thanks to the egotistical travellers who tell you NOT to visit typical tourist spots. However I say go to Europe and see the Eiffel Tower and the Colosseum, these places are iconic and historical. Go to Los Angeles to visit Disney land, buy Mickey Mouse Ears and have the time of your life. Don’t feel like you have to head off the beaten track to find joy in travelling. Visit the tourist spots of the world, snap your pictures and eat your crepes!
3. Travel Mishaps Happen (often)
You may have been planning for a month, a year or life time for a trip you’re about to embark on and excitement levels are bound to be high. Keep in mind though, that this is travel, and you have no control over what could happen. Staying optimistic and positive during travel is important.
– Fight delays or flight cancellations
– Lost baggage
– Missed flights
(ALL potential travel risks and ALL happened to me, in one trip, ALL at once!)
All you need to remember is that things can and do go awry, and although sometimes these are unavoidable risks they are somewhat manageable.
• Book flexible accommodation.
• Give your self a few days before and after your trip just in case things don’t go according to plan.
• Pack a few outfits in your carry on luggage.
• Leave plenty of time between connecting flights.
All these tips will save you the stress and worry of travel.
4. Customs and Respect
One of the most important lessons or truths that people should know is that when you arrive in a different country it is YOU who needs to adapt not the country or its people. Don’t arrive and expect everyone to speak your common language. Don’t always assume that attire you’d usually wear in your own country will be appropriate in another, and research goes a long way understand the places you plan to visit because there can be hefty consequences for disrespecting customs and rules, ignorance is not always bliss and will get you into trouble in certain places. Just respect the people and places.
5. Food is fun but can give you the runs!
Finally, it needs to be mentioned. There is probably one thing in this world that unites us all and it is our need for food! Food most definitely brings us together and warms the soul. I highly recommend trying the local delicacies and ordering popular dishes of the country. Just bare in mind that you might be ready to dive head first into that curry but your stomach may not! Go easy on yourself so you don’t spend half of your trip SICK.