“There is always a first time for everything.” The first time you flew might have been nerve-wracking, praying that gravity won’t pull the plane down, but that trip brought you so many happy memories. The first time you entered a bar on your own abroad, you wished you won’t attract so much attention, but you did and ended up meeting up new friends. The first time you let go of fear and dive from the sky, that’s an unforgettable experience you share each time there is a chance.
Things you do for the first time, especially away from the safety of home and familiar environment can put you on edge, but much of it turns out on a happy note. They spiced your travel and made you learn a new thing or two. As long as you travel and bravely seek new experiences to perk your wisdom and spirit, life will never be boring.
Megan Snedden of the Road Warrior Voices thinks that there are, however, 8 Things First-time International Travelers Need to Know. She shares her experience and what she learned from it…
“As a late bloomer myself, leaving the country for the first time in my twenties, I continue to be surprised by the unexpected moments that happen while I’m on the road. Luckily, such moments have lead to lessons …”
Despite all the preparations, nothing can prepare you for what lies ahead. Honestly, unexpected moments can make your travel all the more colorful and meaningful, but not always. To stay safe and on the positive side, Snedden shares these eight things you should know before heading off into the sunset.
- At some point, everything will go wrong. It can be a tense moment, but many beautiful experiences can happen because of that. Missed your flight? A train trip might just make you meet a lot of nice people and happy occurrences along the way. Go with the flow and try to take things in a positive way.
- You’ll likely spend more money than you anticipate. With a horde of so many interesting stuff, foods and experiences you’ll have the opportunity to try, the possibility is huge. So, be smart. Bring some extra and be savvy to use an app to track and/or manage your money and expenses.
- You’re probably going to get diarrhea. Traveller’s diarrhea is called such because it happens to most travellers. Learning from them, it is easier to avoid the reasons that can give you the bug and turn your supposed happy days under the sun (or skiing down powdery slopes) into nightmarish days and nights in a foreign hospital. Ask your doctor for some prescriptions to take care of minor health problems. Watch what (and where) you eat and drink. Street food is a cultural experience that you wouldn’t want to miss, but learn the safer ways to enjoy them.
- There will be moments of cluelessness. If the exotic destination has very few locals who can speak and understand English, you’ll be clueless most of the time. The solution is to embark on learning the most basic words and phrases months (if not years) before your travel. There are online tutorials that you can use to advance your skills. You can also check out greatly evolved pocket translators ranging from small pocket books to electronic/digital hat types. The experience can challenge you; the reward is learning words that can endear you to the locals.
- You will either become a patriot or begin to hate America. Getting exposed to more cultures will make you see more, in the real sense. You can better appreciate your country of origin for the kind of comfortable life you are blessed with. You may also perceive your experiences in a different way and love them more than what you do at home.
- Your itch will not be satisfied. Prior to travel, you may just be dreaming to experience a chance to visit another country. After the wonderful experiences, you may experience a craving to travel more. Don’t worry; it is a bug that “infects” many travellers. After all, your immersion in other cultures can be heady. With a goal, you may just get motivated to look at things and life in a different way… a more positive one at that.
- Your dating tastes might change. Travel can teach you a lot of lessons that can influence the way you live your life and mingle with people. The experiences and the lessons can be life-changing. Because of travel, the way you look at the world and life might change.
- Your job will be more boring than ever before. The change can be reflected in the way you view your job. After all the unpredictability of life down the road or in a foreign country, staying in a small cubicle or doing a routine job can become too boring for you. Rather than be overwhelmed by your new discoveries, be inspired by them. Channel your energies into productivity and creativity.
Travel can impact your life in so many ways, mostly in a good way. New experiences can give you the jitters, be brave and take them all in. Nothing can prepare you for what can be unexpected; but prepare and plan anyway. Be inspired and use the lessons you learned for a fulfilling life.