What stops you from making travel happen? We asked six travellers what initially held them back from booking that flight, taking the ride, making that leap into the unknown and also what helped get them over that hurdle. From introverts to families ties, furry friends to long-term relationships, this guide will empower you to say goodbye to travel fear and hello to new adventures.
Travel Fear Busting
Becky,The Girl and the Globe, is a self-proclaimed introvert and sets the record straight for the painfully shy nomad.
One of the travel fears I had before travelling was would I make friends or would I be lonely? I’m an introvert by nature, so meeting strangers isn’t something that comes naturally to me! However, it’s important to remember that in all but the most remote destinations, there are other travellers in the same boat. It’s easy to start a conversation with travellers in a hostel, with other people on the same tour or activity as you, and with locals you meet along the way. Sometimes making the first comment can be difficult, but before you know it, you’ll be involved in an easy conversation. Sometimes, all it takes is to simply invite someone to dinner or to a museum with you. I’ve received many more “yes” responses than “no” and even some of the no responses result in a counter-offer.
- Find out where Becky’s ‘sightdoing’ next via Twitter
The Selim Family are not shy to travel and are currently waiting on their New Zealand visas, here they tell us why having kids doesn’t mean you have to ‘settle’.
We love travelling and even though we tend to do more part time/short term travel, I still see it as long term in the sense that it is an active part of our normal life and it’s something we won’t be stopping anytime soon! We have done parts of North America, a lot of Europe, a few trips to Bangladesh and now we are off to New Zealand and Australia for a year and a half.
But what about the children? They need stability and security…we get this all the time! The best advice I can give from our personal experience is that children are carefree and adaptable and that stability can come from strong inner family bond, rather than the external environment. I won’t deny it, our two kids are worried about making friends in New Zealand, and they have voiced it. I have my fears about establishing a support system in a new place! But we overcome these fears by talking about it as a family, looking at and learning about the new places we will visit which is so easy to do now thanks to the wonderful online world of expat and travel blogging community!
- Did the visas come through? Keep up to date with The Selim Family on Facebook
Full Time Work / Part Time Travel
Working for the weekend? Then it’s time to reassess your options. Sandra from Tripper shares her experience and knowledge to give you that boost.
I had a stable job as a junior manager, in a multinational company, with great benefits. But when some of my colleagues (and close friends) started to resign, that’s when I realised it wasn’t the job that kept me there, or the benefits. Frankly, I hated the job! I loved the people and the brand (I still do and I’m still an advocate for their products and service), I just didn’t feel like that’s what I wanted to do. By mid 2013, I started to plan my exit and I quit in early 2014. And why is planning your exit important? Because life is not a Hollywood movie that ends happily and then… roll credits.
Inform yourself about the work laws in your country and your compensation rights (if you are resigning voluntarily will you get paid anything? Bonuses, vacation days you didn’t take, etc). Getting this information right, is critical, even if it’s only a simulation; write down all your basic expenses (food, shelter, comfort) and make sure you leave out the extras (they’re good to have, but you can survive without going out to dinner every weekend for a while); then it’s pure math: Compensation Simulation/Monthly Basic Expenses = X Months of Survival Without a Paycheck. Yes you should think about, money, but as a mean to achieve something (for example, paying bills) and not the end goal.
- Want more practical advice? I do! Follow Tripper on Twitter
Goodbye Love! Hello World
Jenna from Passport and Lenses has recently quit her boyfriend and professional photography company to experience life on their other side of the lens.
Through a process of six months of deep thinking, I decided that I would abandon my successful wedding photography business and trek across the world for as long as possible. While I know others have been as brave, perhaps even braver, it’s terrifying to give up success and stability for the ‘great unknown’ and turn down potential clients every week. It’s hard to provide a foolproof solution to fear itself, but I try to channel my anxiety when I feel it. For instance, when I had to breakup with my boyfriend (he didn’t support my long-term trip) I channeled my heartbreak into deciding to go to Nepal and researching that trip for hours. When I’m beginning to doubt my trip, I read travel blogs to feed the wanderlust I have. When I want to buy a shirt, I ask myself, “how many nights in South East Asia would this pay for?” A solution to fear is perspective. Remind yourself what is important and ask yourself why you’re doing it. If the reasons are good enough, your fear will dissipate and be replaced by the strong motivation to save and plan.
- Follow Jenna on Instagram, considering her career I think we can trust her photos are top of the pops!
Matt from Trek Belize has just moved from The States to Belize, he tells us how to escape our comfort zone.
When I first began planning for Belize I wasn’t concerned with the consequences or the ramifications of basically starting over in life. The idea of living life to fullest and making sure that I was happy was paramount to any other. But as time went on and my departure date got closer and closer I began to worry about every little detail. As I realise now it was a moot point. Travelling and seeing the world is something that most say they would love to do in their lifetime but few actually do. The way I overcame my fear and expanded my comfort zone was to decide that this was a priority in my life. If I wanted to see new places and meet new people then I needed to change my mentality of the way I lived. Each of us has a different method of fear mitigation but really the world is no scarier than we make it. So get out there and live life beyond the comfort zone, it’s far more rewarding than you or I could ever imagine!
- Heading to Belize or need reassurance? Tweet Matt at Trek Belize Blog
I was once told “everyone will look after a baby, no one will look after your dog.” Barbara from Steal Just One Day tells us why dogs still win.
What do we do? Travel. When do we want to do it? All the time. And yet as soon as we left our jobs working on yachts, we adopted one dog, then another. Dogs are probably not the greatest idea if you want to travel long term! It causes me anxiety to leave them with somebody for a while, especially now that they are getting older. The upside of it is that my homecomings are rapturous with wagging. If only they’d fit in my pack…
Scout packs herself in Brian’s case!
Terrified of flying? Check out this post – surviving long haul flights tips.
Still not convinced? Leave your questions below and we will empower you.