Everyone loves traveling right? Wrong! It has been my experience that everyone is pressured into thinking they SHOULD like traveling, even if they don’t. The pressure is so great in fact, that we are raised to consider it one of those things that everyone should do, along with working, having friends, or being attracted to someone (man or woman). Traveling, however, is not something you need to survive and some people are quite happy staying in their town (or country) for the rest of their lives. If you think about it, the average human didn’t really have the resources to move around as much as we do today, so you could consider that the more ‘normal’ thing to do. This is a list of traits or actions I believe are inherit to someone who really doesn’t like to travel (even if they say they do). This isn’t meant to offend anyone, as I understand that just like Metallica is not for me, traveling might not be for you.
(Note: This is my first post under the new domain “travelworldheritage.com” so I am pretty excited.)
#5 You Will Only Stay in a Fancy Resort
As I covered in my “Top 10 Overrated Things to do While Traveling” this is a complete waste of money. However, that is my opinion and I think I understand why a lot of people do it. Sure, I have heard the argument that “you need to relax sometimes,” but some people cannot travel without staying in a fancy hotel. This is an attempt to take the safety of your home with you, and maybe you are not the type to explore another culture.
(Picture note: Why is there a pool, if the hotel is in front of a beach?)
#4 You Travel to Countries Similar to Yours
I think the majority of readers will find this to be the most controversial entry on the list. Have you ever asked someone where they would like to visit more than anywhere in the world, and they tell you a Western European country? Now look, I don’t think there is anything wrong with Western Europe, nor do I think it is the same as the US. However, you must admit that it is the closest we can get in terms of similarity outside of America, besides Canada (but who says, “boy, I really wish I could visit Canada some day!”).
#3 You Compare Other Countries to Your Own
“This would never happen in America!” It is a phrase that, while it sometimes holds merit (in the cases of human rights), is spoken far to often by travelers for very petty things. I am sure there are things that would “never happen in Vietnam,” too. Would you go to your friend’s house and say “I never would have painted my walls in this color” or “this sofa really clashes with the rest of your living room.” No, not really. In fact, you would try to find out why they chose that color scheme or sofa, and accept their difference in taste, because, they are your friend after all. Those kinds of criticisms are for when you go somewhere you despise going (maybe the in-laws house?) The same is true with traveling. Most people who enjoy the act of traveling are rather optimistic about everywhere they go. Famous blogger Gary Arndt from “everything-everywhere.com” highlights this point in his “where I’ve been section” where instead of pointing to one favorite place, he has huge lists of favorite places around the world. If you find yourself nitpicking at every flaw from a place you are visiting, maybe its time to let that passport collect some dust.
#2 You Never Explore Your Own Neighborhood
I understand that for working people, relaxation time is important. I also like to take weekends off when I don’t do anything but read a book, watch movies, or sleep. However, if getting out of the house and exploring your own surroundings seems like a drag more than a blessing on weekends, I don’t think traveling is for you. I understand that exploring a far away land is far more exciting than the things around where you live (no matter where you are from). It is natural to normalize our surroundings and aggrandize foreign or distant lands. However, people with the “travel bug” are usually restless in their own homes. While they love the drug of getting out of the country as much as possible (myself included), local trips holds them/us over until that time comes. Relaxing sometimes is good and refreshing, but if you only like ‘relaxing,’ you might not like traveling at all.
#1 You Make Excuses on WHY you Can’t Go Somewhere
Have you ever asked someone to travel with you and they turn you down, even though you know they have the time, money, and have talked about ‘traveling somewhere’ in the past? I know I have, many many many many MANY times. I have come to the conclusion that they are in the closet about disliking travel.
I remember back to when I first met one of my good friends, lets call her Alice. After a few months of hanging out with her, we started talking about how we both would love to travel as soon as we finished college. We had both gone on trips within the US, so had some knowledge of travel. Sure enough, I went to Mexico a few months after that and invited her. Having been flaked on before (very recently), I was prepared this time with how I would ‘sell Mexico’ to her (being Mexican, I think Mexico is amazing). Almost immediately after I invited her to join my family and me, I was going to prevent her from even thinking about it by jumping right into my sales pitch. She said ‘yes’ right away, and left me speechless. Alice is a traveling junkie, just like me.
Traveling isn’t for everyone, and that is okay. Be honest with yourself and find a hobby that is for you.