Travel is unpredictable. Business or pleasure, things can (and will) go wrong. But, did you know a lot of people ruin their trips before they even leave home? It’s true. Self-sabotage is sneaky. As adults, we unconsciously do a lot of little things that can really harsh the travel vibe. Here are the top five things that people do to ruin their travels:
1. Expecting things to be the same as “at home”. Why travel to a new place if you want to eat the same fast food or the same shopping experiences? When you go abroad and expect things to be the same, it can lead to frustration and make for a challenging time away. FIX: Leave your expectations at home and be ready to appreciate the new sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of your destination.
2. Trying to do EVERYTHING!! Having an intinerary is a good thing, but attempting to see all of a destination in a weekend is near impossible. Rushing from hotel to activity to lunch to activity to dinner to hotel is exhausting, so don’t do it. FIX: Have a plan that lists a few absolute must-dos, but understand that some unplanned time in your destination can sometimes yield more benefit that the scheduled stuff.
3. Being cheap. Travel budgets, for most of us, are important. When the budget becomes restrictive and prevents us from enjoying an extra Nutella croissant each morning or not being able to see Hobbiton, it becomes a pebble in your metaphorical shoe. FIX: Plan your budget but include a little padding for some extra fun. Trust me, it’s worth it.
4. Wearing the wrong clothes. No one says you have to buy a new wardrobe, but wearing the leggings or cargo shorts and flip flops you wear everyday at home may make you stick out in the wrong way. Chances are you will be ‘made’ a tourist, even if you dress like the locals, but why borrow trouble by sporting that FBI (female body inspector) t-shirt or the 2-sizes-too-small leggings with the cutouts? FIX: Consider packing dressy casual clothes for your destination. Going to the beach is one wardrobe, touring the city is another. These days, athleisure is all the rage and will a little forethought, you can look put together AND be comfortable. Check out sites like UneFemme.net or ArtOfManliness.com for ideas.
5. Acting like you are on spring break. Having fun is one thing. Pushing boundaries of experience and soaking up the atmosphere of a new place. But when that becomes a constant bacchanalia the devolves into naked selfies at a revered ancient religious monument or riding an endangered sea turtle, that is something else altogether. FIX: Don’t be a jackass. Be respectful, have some decorum, and if you can’t control yourself picture your stupid escapade landing you in a foreign jail. Hopefully, that will convince you to refrain from scratching your initials into a 3,000 year old landmark.
Now, NOT doing these things doesn’t guarantee the best trip of your life, but it may help you get more out of your next trip. What do you think of this list? Did I miss anything or do you disagree with any? Let me know in the comments!