It’s For The FUN Of It All!
You will see new places and make new friends across the globe.
For every place that you visit, you enhance your life.
You experience new weather, exciting new terrain, and fabulous new foods.
You learn about different customs and new ways of living.
WHY else would we do it?
So, why do people travel abroad?
Travel Is An Adventure!
When crossing the Atlantic, being all tucked away together on a ship for two weeks was like living in the same house! You are forced to see the same people every day.
Let’s face it, you can go everywhere – on the ship – so you DO things.
I can just imagine the guys who design these ships have thought of everything that would make a traveler happy.
There are swimming pools and shuffleboards, pubs, matinees, and early dinners for the children. It was relaxing, and once you get out of rough seas – there’s always a bad day somewhere – you look out to beautiful blue waters.
We sailed on the S.A.Vaal from Capetown to Southampton, in September 1977.
Things were just right for us, as we were only 1400 passengers.
This is a far cry from the 5,000-passenger liners of today.
It was sold in later 1977 to Carnival Cruise Lines and rebuilt in Japan with extra decks, doubling the passenger capacity.
At 760 feet long, it was the biggest cruise ship in the Bahamas!
After another 25 years, she is no longer with us. We will miss her!
Depending on where you are, you might see dolphins or whales, seals or penguins.
The sea is fascinating.
If it’s dry land you are after, you could go camping or RVing anywhere. You could fly first class to the capitals of the world or go on a South African safari.
Always remember that the people you meet have the same interests as you do.
You already have a great connection.
Why Do People Travel Abroad?
To Make New Friends!
New friendships are formed quickly and since everyone is on vacation, everyone is in a jovial mood. They wanted to step out, see new places, and meet new people.
Those people are just like you; they love to travel too!
Expect the unexpected.
There were lots of gatherings on the ship and 20 of us grouped.
We were from the same era.
It was natural and we sought each other out.
So we met for that all-important sociable drink before dinner.
After that, it all fell into place!
Michael was a guy in our group who always made jokes.
He was very spontaneous and quick with the smarty-pants retort.
I wondered how many times his momma wanted to slap him silly.
This group alone gave us years of friendships from various parts of the world.
This was a tremendous bonus!
Join The Performing Arts;
We learned to line-dance at a country hoedown.
I think we all imagine we are great dancers.
I had no illusions about myself. I knew I was a terrible dancer so I kept a very low profile.
But I could waltz and now, I can line-dance!
This makes me cool in a country-music country.
We had skits and plays at night for the adults. We did everything we told the children not to do. We didn’t pay attention, we talked all the time
and hurled one-liners at each other.
Here is a story example for you; I tell it under great duress:
In a skit, when someone forgot their line we threw in a wrong word that left them wondering what they should say.
What was my line? I had ONE word to say and was struck before those lights.
All I had to say was, “taxi!”
But noooo, I couldn’t remember that one word while everyone on stage was cueing me with “taxi, say taxi”.
I thought they were trying to tell me to go away, in a taxi… We were on a ranch in the country, in the middle of nowhere!
What Customs Are Your Customs?
Before our next adventure, we thought it prudent to do some research.
We discovered “Read About Japanese Customs Before You Go”. That was a great idea!
We learned of important information:
1. We needed to brush up on our bowing: the deeper the bow the deeper the respect.
This is not to be taken lightly and we had to know when to bow low or high… Watch your guide for this one.
They bow to say hello, or goodbye… if someone dies or is born… They bow a lot!.. Like shaking hands!
2. Don’t ever leave a tip in Japan… This is considered an insult, and the server will not understand why you did this.
It will be refused… I like this custom but I also like to tip.
3. Take off your shoes: not only when entering someone’s house, but also at some restaurants, hostels, and hotels.
I often wondered if people lost some very good shoes doing this. Would it seem improper to carry your shoes around with you? I would hate to lose this pair!
4. Take a shower before you use the public bath. Now everyone must be clean before they become clean together.
There are showers there and everyone uses them before taking a bath!
5. Slurp your noodles to show the cook that you are enjoying the meal! But not all noodles are created equal – not spaghetti, for example. Only local noodles shall be slurped.
My travel research continued to unknown corners of the world. We wanted to visit Iceland, so we studied it.
What did I learn about this great land?
1. Don’t buy bottled water. They would not be caught dead carrying a plastic water bottle in Iceland.
They are a very “Green” country.
Their water is purified naturally through the lava rock and perfect out of the tap… They are proud of this.
2. They will be crazy-on-you about littering and they will not tolerate anyone polluting their land! Full stop.
3. They insist that you call them by their first name! They don’t really have a last name, as Westerners do.
They use this even in business practice and I would think that if you said “Ivor!”, ten men would stand up!
4. Nooo tipping!!
5. Geothermal pools are everywhere and people go often.
DO NOT EVER enter the pool without showering first.
Only a tourist would do that!.. Just like in Japan.
WHY Do People Like To Travel Abroad?
Let me explain the rationale:
1. It is an ADVENTURE right from the beginning. Explore unknown territory, with no plans, and go for whatever comes your way.
I cannot stress this more… just stay loose. Expect the unexpected and roll with it.
You won’t be sorry, but you will be entertained, educated, and left agog!
2. You will make a lot of new friends and believe me, the people you meet are just like you.
They are spontaneous, or they wouldn’t be here, and they want to meet YOU!
You already like some of the same things; you met on a train, already! You’re like twins!
3. You will see new countries with a different terrain from yours.
Everything is different; the vegetation, houses, waterways, mountains, and deserts.
4. The seasons in the southern hemisphere are reversed. Go there in December!
5. Some cultures are opposite to what you are used to… Learn some lessons!
6. Get ready to visit their local bars, restaurants, and town markets.
7. Learn a new language. Ok, at least make a stab at it.
Don’t worry about your pronunciation! People cannot wait to help you,
especially because you are a visitor!
The few keywords you learn will be fun! After the trip, those words will be the main topic of conversation… You’ll remember them forever!
Discover those places you learned about!
8. The places that you learned about are THERE! Yes, it’s the real Patmos, Greece.
Yes, that’s the real Waterloo.
Come and visit the real Leaning Tower… It is all still there… Like the pyramids!
9. You are away from your routine and indulging in relaxation and quiet. It’s stress-relieving!
Yes, it can be stressful if connections are missed or delayed.
But do you know that happens only to people who have an itinerary?
If you are ok with delays, or changes in the mode of travel, nothing will stress you.
We get there when we get there.
10. I cannot say this enough – you are exposed to wonderful new foods!
The food is different, nutritious, and a gastronomic delight.
What was imported into your country is local here!.. Knock yourself out!
Visit local mom-and-pop eateries. When you can’t read the menu someone will magically appear and promise you a good meal!
It will be homemade and you will be treated like family.
It will be unique, tasty, and enjoyable!
How Can I Save Money On My Trips?
1. One of the best things you can do is shop 1 year in advance, for your trip.
Expect to get a very good discount and now you have one year to pay for the trip.
Buy cancellation insurance, in case they cancel.
My brother and his wife had paid for a very expensive trip, around $15,000.00 – and since they are avid travelers, they bought cancelation insurance.
One month before they were to take off, one of them developed a major illness. For $450.00 of insurance, they were able to keep the other $14,550.00. Do your due diligence and have insurance.
2. Be flexible. Look for an expedition that is not full and they need just two more people for a full group.
Where is it going? Panama? OK, let’s go there. Be ready to sail in two weeks!
3. How you travel will make a huge difference.
Going across Canada? See what it would cost to take a train instead of flying.
When I tested this, I was surprised to learn that trains that were high-speed, luxury, cross-country… were an expensive mode of travel, at that time.
True to an adventuresome attitude we tried it anyway. It was totally worth it. If magnificent views of the Rockies are not appealing, don’t go there!
Have you considered a bus? Book a seat on a chartered bus going at least part of the way.
Then catch another! And another, or spend the night in this little town along the way.
Visit the local ice cream shop…
4. Going to the other side of the Mediterranean?
Have you ever worked your way across, on a ship going to a new country?
You might even try fairy boats and small private sea-going vessels.
Have you ever been on a cargo ship? Don’t rule anything out!
5. Would you join a caravan and cross a desert?
Can you imagine sleeping in a tent in a desert oasis?
This is the type of group travel that many people won’t do, or they will pull out at the last minute. Just ask, “Do you have two tickets please?”
Then ask for a discount – after all you are the last two people to form the group You are important people – just ask.
The camels would be nearby, grunting and spitting. Don’t get too close!
Surprisingly they are easy and comfy to ride and they make you laugh.
6. Remember all those friends you made on the ship crossing the Atlantic? Yes?- –House swap!
We stayed in friends’ houses in Madrid and Germany; they stayed in our house in Belgium while we were away.
7. Check the exchange rate! If the USD is not doing well against the Euro, don’t go to Europe! Find another place to visit… Go to Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.
The exchange rate of the USD and South African Rand is 18.5/1 (2024) in favor of the USD. What a surprise!
For a few thousand dollars you could fly first class to South Africa, and stay for a month in five-star accommodations.
You could go on a safari, swim on beautiful beaches, see gorgeous terrain, visit the wineries, and meet the most wonderful people in the world.
The food is good and plentiful too – you need to consider this.
8. Go south; very south. Fly to Patagonia or the Falklands and join an adventure ship sailing to Antarctica. (For more on adventures in Antarctica, click here!)
These ships are becoming more and more accessible and you could do it now before it becomes too popular.
TO SUMMARIZE: The World Is Your Oyster!
I cannot express enough about how wonderful it is to travel!
For every country you live in, you inherit
1. Don’t let this be only about education or only about seeing something in a brochure.
It is a good learning experience, but don’t let that force you to stop at every ruin and museum in the country.
Are you really enjoying this?
After a while, your eyes glaze over!
Don’t forget about the new places you want to see, even if they are NOT educational.
Just do it! Visit that seashore, or climb that hill.
2. It is not just about self-esteem, although there is a certain amount of satisfaction in
making a good deal and executing a successful trip.
It probably piqued your interest and you are planning another great experience.
This makes for great conversation for a while.
4. Travel is also about the people you meet and the friendships that come from it.
If you are expecting to be surprised and delighted about all of it, you will be!
Pssst: they want to meet you too!
5. You have been warned about the food and don’t be afraid to be adventuresome!
Try everything you are comfortable with.
I lived in crocodile country for twenty years, but I never wanted to try it for an entree!
I don’t know anyone who did, but some people don’t eat pork either.
6. For me, travel is all about going there. I WANT to go there… Period.
(Read about why “I Want To Go There”. I’ll tell you!)
I want to meet new people, see new hills and rivers and just be in another place.
And if I am relaxed and happy as a side-effect, then I am enjoying a non-threatening pastime.
If you booked a flight and checked in for boarding and you boarded the plane and everything was cool, it’s a failure!
If everything went well, according to PLAN, there is nothing to write about.
You wouldn’t even remember the event.
Now you check in to board this same flight but they over-booked.
You were asked if you would like to stay in (New York, Venice, or Iceland) for the weekend,
all expenses paid.
Now, THIS is a success story!
Now you have something to write home about!
Now you are on an adventure!
Share your adventure stories with me! I would love to hear all about it!
Drop a comment in the box below.
I will respond to you within 24 hours!
Regards, Corinne :-)))