“How do you get to travel so often?” A question I get asked one too many times.
“I want to be like you when I grow up.”?
Yeah, that’s the phrase.
When I do proceed to indulge this conversation and get a chance to ask,
“why do you not travel?” “what’s stopping you?” the excuses are endless.
To be honest I see how these excuses could be justifiable on one’s end but most of the time, it is invalid.
It’s really not enough.
So, I will be talking about these common excuses and giving remedies to each.
Stay with me.
1. “It’s too expensive, I can’t afford it”
Ha! This has got to be the most common excuse. Sometimes, you guys even go ahead and say stuff like “I’m not a big girl like you” “I’m not rich enough” “maybe when I get a better job” or ” I am sure your parents help you”
Well NO. In case you didn’t know, I’m not rich either. Well, not yet ?
For some reason, we have been conditioned to think travel is only for the rich, upper class and privileged. To be honest, I used to think that way too till I realised it is really not the case because, travel, like so many things in life is about priorities.
If travel is genuinely not important to you, I see how you will only consider it when you have a surplus flow of cash. (yes, there’s such a thing) BUT if like me, you’ll love to make travel a lifestyle, you’ll have to make some changes.
a. Discipline. At this point, we’ve established that travel is important to you. Yes? Okay, good. Let’s start with tracking your spending habits. Where does most of your salary go? Eating out? Shopping sprees? Luxury Items? Entertainment subscriptions? Phone bills? Identify the unnecessary spends and cut them out (okay, at least limit them) Separate your wants from your needs. I promise, you will save a LOT of cash.
b. Go into a saving routine. Perhaps you might have to let go of buying that Chanel bag or the new red iPhone 7.
Create a travel fund and set aside cash every week/month and put it in. It could be a bank account or a travel jar (I highly suggest a bank account, it’s what I do 🙂 ). You should also consider going with cheaper options like; targeting the cheaper countries first, this way your goal becomes more achievable. Look out for airline discounts and reduced accommodations costs.
There are so many ways to make travel affordable ( backpacking, Couchsurfing, houseswapping, hostels)or even for free (mission trips, volunteering to teach English) but let’s move on, I’ll be writing about these in subsequent posts.
In the end, don’t ever let yourself say that you cannot afford to travel because if you really want to, you can.
2. “I don’t have the time/It’s not the right time”
I think I write for everyone when I state “We make time for whatever is important to us.” So this excuse genuinely does not fly.
Allow me to indulge you and assume you are the busiest person with the fullest calendar and longest to- do list. Surely you deserve some down time. If not for anything, health-wise: psychologically, emotionally and for your spiritual stability.
Here’s is an article that tells you 5 reasons why. So if you often find yourself saying “I don’t have the time”, NOW is the time. 🙂
For procrastinators, it is never the right time. I beg to differ, if not now, when?
After that promotion when you have more responsibilities? After that business deal when you actually have to meet and surpass expectations? When you get married with kids and have to depend on your parents to babysit? When your kids grow up and no longer have to depend on you but you’re already old? Or when you retire and no longer have the same dreams, interest or worse, strength?
Tomorrow isn’t promised. There is absolutely no guarantee in life. So stop planning and analysing so much and seize the moment.
Do it now, the time is now.
a. In all honesty, you do not need that much time. You do not need to take 3weeks off for your dream trip or to know you’ve properly rested. How about extending your weekends? Going to a neighbouring country or even city? Whatever gets you out of your bubble. All you need to do is commit to making it happen and with patience, persistence, and diligent planning, it will. 🙂
3. “I don’t have anyone to travel with”
This is genuinely still an obstacle for my travels and to be honest it shouldn’t be. I know it’s disappointing when no one has the same passion or goal as you but there’s no rule that says you must travel with someone. Sometimes it seems like you are literally begging people to have fun or do something that would be more beneficial to them than you. Or the worst one yet, having people cancel on you with the most random excuses a few weeks or days to the trip.
a. DO it solo. “The easiest way to meet people is to travel solo,” and I learnt that on my solo trip to Slovakia. Most solo travellers and bloggers I follow say their best experiences happened when they went solo. Apparently, it forces you to fully take in the experience and authentically be yourself. Unapologetically you. (I think you deserve to experience this)
If you are scared of travelling solo, follow my favourite solo bloggers: Travelwithapen and Theblondeabroad, I bet you will be going on a solo trip in no time. If these bloggers still don’t win you over into solo travel, then the next remedy is for you.
b. Join a travel club/Have a travel buddy: Personally, it’s my better option. If your travel buddy is already a friend then you are winning! But it’s not the same thing. A travel buddy is someone with the same travel interests and zeal as you and a travel club is just a group of travel buddies! It’s not particularly easy to find a travel buddy so If you find it hard to get one, pick me! I’ll go with you. 😀 😉
I am also creating a travel club so you should join! (WHOOP! Details coming soon! Subscribe here to be the first to know.)
4. “I have never travelled before”
Fear. The fear of doing something new never gets old. We have all experienced fear one way or the other and for some people, travel is the trigger. Fear of flying, fear of the unknown, fear of leaving your loved ones, being out of your comfort zone, whatever it may be, I urge you to TRY. Do not let fear hold you back from seeing the world or be an obstacle to a life full of adventure, excitement and self-realisation. Doing anything is scary at first but once you convince yourself that you can do it, it will be worth it. The more you do it, the easier it gets and that awkward feeling turns to passionate pleasure and I bet you will not want to let that feeling go.
Everything you want is on the other side of fear 🙂
a. Research: Once you feel the urge to go on a trip or get inspired by a certain destination, read everything and anything you can about the country. The weather, what to wear, what to pack, medical vaccinations, the culture and so much more. Be as prepared as you can! Blogs like this will certainly help you prepare for a trip. 🙂
b. Travel Insurance. I’ve never paid for travel insurance but I do intend to start as I now realise the importance of this. Travel insurance will definitely make you feel better. You cannot put a price on peace of mind.
c. Stay Postive. After embarking on your first trip, one thing is certain, you will make new friends, learn new skills and be more confident! (seems like a win to me. Yes?)
5. “I need a visa and it’s such a hassle”
“Nothing good comes easy” you know it, I know it. We all know it. But yeah, this still doesn’t change the visa struggles. 😀
a. Visa Free Countries. As a Nigerian passport holder, I understand the frustration of having to apply to 1st world countries like in the U.S. or Europe. However, your passport (whatever it is) is not as limited as you think. There are a number of Visa-free countries for you to consider and these countries are equally as good!
With a Nigerian Passport, you have access to 44 visa-free and visa-on-arrival countries. Click here for the details. and with a British Passport, you have access to 173 visas free and visa-on-arrival countries. Click here for the details. Also, an American Passport has access to 174 Visa free and visa-on-arrival countries. Click here for the details.
So if you ever have a case of wanderlust and in dear need of a vacation without the stress attached to visa applications, research on where your passport can take you without a visa and GO!
b. Travel Agencies/Planning. Sometimes, you just want to go to that country that requires a visa and the thought of the process; fees, paperwork, prerequisites, planning and the dreaded moment -Denied just stops you. This is where travel agents come in. They have literally mastered the art of visa applications and rarely will you get denied if you go through an agency or with adequate planning. If on the rare occasion you get denied, I hope that you never accept No for an answer and stay relentless. 🙂
People of the world, haha, if you want to travel, the time is NOW. I hope you stop holding back 🙂
The excuses I have heard are endless but these are my top common ones. How about you? What excuses have you heard? Please share in the comments section!
Thank you for reading.
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