Many things can stop you from traveling, but the biggest is usually yourself. Most of the reasons you come up with for why you can’t travel are just excuses, fears, and hurdles that seem bigger than they really are. Whether you want to take a week long vacation or a year long trip around the world, there are ways to accomplish that goal if you really want it. So what’s stopping you?
You think travel is scary
Fear is a big part of why so many people don’t travel. It’s a big part of why people don’t do a lot of things. But if you really want to travel, you have to fight those fears head on. Usually the best way to get over a fear is to jump in and do what you’re afraid of. Once you give it a try and see that it’s not as scary as you thought, you’ll get a huge confidence boost. This is actually one of the things I love about travel.
Are you afraid travel isn’t safe? Do some research on travel forums to find out what it’s really like right now at the destination you’re thinking about. Remember that “unknown” usually translates as “unsafe” in the mind, but that’s not really accurate. And just because a particular country was unsafe 20 years ago doesn’t means it’s still dangerous now. Find out the current situation.
Are you worried because you don’t speak the language? Learn a few words of the local language before you go. Hello, good-bye, please, and thank you will usually be enough. Remember that most people who deal with tourists speak at least a few basic words of English. Hand gestures can go a long way too.
Are you scared of getting sick while traveling? Again, research will help you here. Find out if the water is safe to drink ahead of time. Talk to your doctor about vaccines to get before your trip and medications to bring with you.
Don’t let your fears control you. A little research and preparation can go a long way in making sure you feel comfortable so fear doesn’t stop you from traveling.
You think travel is expensive
Maybe you don’t have many travel fears, but you worry about the cost of traveling. Travel can actually be much more affordable than you might think. Certain parts of the world, like Southeast Asia and Latin America, are generally inexpensive. But even if you want to go to Europe, there are ways of taking the trip without breaking the bank.
Pick a few places you might want to travel to, and research the costs. Once you know approximately how much your trip should cost, find ways to save money, such as bringing your lunch to work instead of eating out, and make coffee at home instead of stopping for Starbucks every day.
Choose the right hotel to fit your budget. Don’t splurge on fancy dinners every night. Take public transportation instead of taxis. Buy cereal bars and fruit or something else you can easily store in your hotel room for breakfast if breakfast isn’t included in the price of your room. Travel slowly to minimize transportation costs.
You think you don’t have time to travel
Vacation time from work is precious whether you get two weeks or two months per year. Maybe you have family you don’t see often, so you save your vacation time to visit them. Or maybe you usually use your vacation time to do things around the house. Those precious days can quickly run out leaving you with not enough time to take a real vacation.
If traveling is something you really want to do, you’ll need to make it a priority. Do that housework on the weekend or after work. Try to rearrange your family visits so you’ll have more vacation time left over. Meet your family in a vacation spot instead of at someone’s home. Maximize your vacation time by planning a trip around national holidays so you don’t have to use as much vacation time. Get creative with this one.
It’s easy to talk yourself out of traveling. Fears can hold you back. Concerns about money and time can keep you from even trying to plan a trip. But if you want to go somewhere, really look at what is stopping you from traveling and work past it. There’s a simple way around almost anything, and a big beautiful world out there waiting to be explored.
So what’s stopping you from traveling?
You might also enjoy:
- Are you afraid to travel alone?
- Interview with a TEDx speaker about building the confidence to travel
- 7 Steps to Research and Plan a Trip
- And check out the travel fears section here