Author Topic: Afraid of international travel?  (Read 2054 times)

tooqk4u22

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Afraid of international travel?
« on: July 21, 2021, 09:53:34 PM »
I am envious of all of you and those who travel internationally.  When I was younger I didn't really think about it. When I was a bit less younger I thought about it quite a bit but ya know I was busy living (or not living) life to do the typical work and progess in the career...and one day syndrome.   Then more responsibilities that just doubled down on the career/income (and FI pursuit) progression (mortgage, kids, saving for it all, etc).....more one day syndrome.  Now I am a bit older (or old), FIRE'D, with kids still at home but college bound is on the horizon.   And here I am on the precipice of being able to openly travel with DW and I find myself more afraid to do so in an ever increasing amount as each year goes by.....afraid of violence, afraid of language barriers, afraid of discomfort, etc. I also don't like air travel, not afraid just get restless.     

I don't know if this is normal or not....is this a cry for help or a cautionary tale to do this when you are young.   

pasadenafr

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2021, 10:25:10 PM »
It's called "fear of the unknown". And something you've always thought of as "one day, maybe, I'd like to do" but it was never "real". Now it is, and you're scared. It would be so much easier to stay home. All very normal.

My advice? Rip the band-aid. Choose a destination where you would feel a bit more secure - somewhere safe enough, where language isn't a barrier, where the culture is familiar. Maybe the UK? I hear Ireland and Scotland are wonderful. You'll realize the discomfort, if any, isn't as bad as you're dreading it. Then the next one will be easier.

Mr. Green

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2021, 10:29:43 PM »
I have not travelled internationally but we have done some rather unorthodox domestic travel the last few years. I'm typing this as I lay in the back of our SUV, sitting on BLM land in Colorado, and listening to the rain patter on the roof. :)

It's been my experience that I fear it won't go as well as I've romanticized. We're in the middle of our third cross-country trip in three years now. Each time out I've had concerns about this or that, and whether I'll truly enjoy things the way I hope I will.

Building something up in your mind a certain way can really put a damper on the actual experience if you can't be flexible enough to allow the experience to deviate from your imagined journey.

Each time out we've learned something, and our travel has not been quite the same each year. Last year, the second trip, I ruined my enjoyment of a healthy part of it because I was so hung up on wanting it to be just like the first year. This year, I have the wisdom of that experience, and while I still yearn for the magic of that first trip, I realize that life changes and so do our priorities. That first trip was close to dirtbagging. Sleeping in the car or a tent all the time, showering every 3-4 days, tolerating a fair amount of discomfort. I'm not at that place in life anymore. I don't really want that same experience but I do want the magic. I just have to understand that there is still magic in other ways of traveling, whatever that is now to suit my comfort level.

Despite some of the frustrations and challenges, I have never regretted going. Even a "failure" is a chance to learn that maybe that particular style of travel didn't work for me, so how can I make adjustments to eliminate what I didn't enjoy and maximize what I did.

Start with something you think you can handle, maybe a shorter trip of planned duration. Give yourself a little flexibility to experience some of the things you're nervous about but also plan for enough familiarity that it's not overwhelming.

Fru-Gal

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2021, 10:32:35 PM »
It's also OK to never travel internationally in your life. Air travel sucks and so do airports. Exploring your own country or region can be AMAZING (and I'd suggest you start there anyway). That said, my parents are very old (medical term: "old old") and love to travel internationally to wacky places. It's a bit annoying in the sense that they show more interest in an orchestrated tour group encounter with children in a random country than they do with their grandkids, with whom they've never been close. But it's also inspiring in that it shows there's no upper limit for extremely long distance travel.

Fru-Gal

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2021, 10:36:17 PM »
Ooh Mr. Green I aspire to that!!! I did it so long ago, feels like it was another me...

ObviouslyNotAGolfer

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2021, 11:36:14 PM »
I recommend you spend some time studying the language spoken at your destination before you go. I've learned some basic Italian, German, Russian, Norwegian, and French before various trips--and then sadly forgot much of it after the trip was over. (I tried Mandarin, but was pretty much a failure!) However, I have enjoyed the French enough, that I have continued to learn it for nearly two years now. I also recommend you pay careful attention to pronunciation in addition to vocabulary and grammar. In nearly every interaction I've had, the locals appreciate that I at least tried, and didn't show up totally unprepared speaking only English. Duolingo is a great resource, but you will need other books, idioms, and the like...

I also recommend you learn something of the customs, history, culture, food, etc before departing. Visiting a foreign country is not like going to Hawaii to veg out for a week; it is part of your education, and takes some work to prepare if you are going to get anything out of it (and not piss off the locals).

Some time spent on TripAdvisor forums will be very worthwhile, as will time reading Rick Steves (if you're going to Europe)! Eyewitness Travel guide are also great and very well illustrated. 

And for dog's sake, leave PLENTY OF TIME at the airport when traveling internationally!!! On our most recent trip, It took us FOUR hours to get from curbside to our gate at CDG, but we were prepared because--as always--we leave plenty of time.

Also, don't try to do 21 cities in 20 days, or even 7 cities in 20 days. I advise you spend more time in fewer locations--take your time, unpack, relax, explore. No matter how much time and money you might have, you will never see it all. You don't want to spend your vacation packing and unpacking and figuring out new accommodations every day! We like to either rent a car and/or take train trips to various destinations near a major city. From Paris we took trips to Giverny, Chartres, Reims, Versailles, etc.

Also, PACK LIGHT. When you are lugging your stuff from car through airport to plane to taxi to train to bus to taxi, up narrow winding staircases, you will regret every extra ounce gram of crap you brought along!!!

As for safety, pickpockets are common in Europe, even sometimes in out-of-the-way locations, but in most EU countries violent crime is much less of a problem than in the U.S. Read Rick Steves' advice on this!





« Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 12:02:01 AM by ObviouslyNotAGolfer »

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2021, 12:15:18 AM »
I'm not really seeing from your first post any suggestion that you really want to travel internationally. It sounds like you assumed you would when it was convenient, but not that you are bursting to see more of the world. Is that fair or not?

Air travel IS annoying, language barriers ARE confusing and disorienting, travel WILL be uncomfortable: you'll get jet-lag, the hotel bed won't suit you, you'll be too hot/cold/blistered/sweaty and the water will taste funny.

There are a ton of tips to alleviate the downside, but it's also fine to decide that the downsides outweigh the upsides. There are plenty of amazing trips you can have without getting on a plane. Start with that and see if you are bursting to add complexity.

NorthernIkigai

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2021, 02:26:00 AM »
As others have mentioned, you don't have to travel internationally. But if you've thought about it, I think it might be worth giving it a go (soon, when everything gets a bit better).

Now I am a bit older (or old), FIRE'D, with kids still at home but college bound is on the horizon.

This sounds like the absolutely perfect time of your life to travel: you have the money and the time, your kids would probably want to share the experience with you, you'd make lifelong memories together. And if it turns out they enjoy it and you don't, you can just not go again and they can start making (and paying for) their own travel plans soon enough.

I always traveled a bit with my parents as a child and teenager, nothing extremely expensive but some trips within Europe and even a few to other continents (back in the days when packaged travel via an agent was the norm, so even exotic places were pretty safe and everything was well organized). These are the experiences my now septuagenarian parents like to reminisce about with us, the things that stand out even after decades.

And here I am on the precipice of being able to openly travel with DW and I find myself more afraid to do so in an ever increasing amount as each year goes by.....afraid of violence, afraid of language barriers, afraid of discomfort, etc. I also don't like air travel, not afraid just get restless.     

There are plenty of not-very-violent places in the world :-) Also, lots of places where English is either the main language or more or less a de facto n:th language. And most places are used to tourists speaking English anyway, where ever they are from. Trying to learn a bit of the local language(s) is of course always nice, but not at all required in a lot of places. Discomfort is very much something you can influence by spending enough time and money and not trying to cram too much in. Flying sucks, sure, but that's just a small part of the trip.

Would your kids like to travel? Then outsource the planning to them! ;-)

I don't know if this is normal or not....is this a cry for help or a cautionary tale to do this when you are young.   

I certainly would not be up for the same kind of travel I did when in my 20's (those overnight bus trips between European countries...), but am slowly getting back my appetite for (slow, comfortable, mindful) travel which I had lost due to the pandemic and to having young kids who are a hassle to travel with. There are so many different ways of traveling, I'm sure there is one for you.

habanero

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2021, 03:27:50 AM »
It's always a bit surprising to see americans talk about the great outside world as a dangerous place. Unless you avoid a few obvious places the majority of the world is considered safer than the US. Its a general misconception that the world is a dangerous place - it isn't, and afaik most of the blame is put on constant newsfeeds from all over the world giving the impression that a lot more bad shit happens nowadays than before when you never got the news. Pre-internet, that some bus fell off a mountain road and ten people died say in Pakistan wasn't world news, now it well might be.

Im not claming these to be any authorative source, but here the US ranks between Moldovia and Equatorial Guinea.
https://www.travelsafe-abroad.com/countries/

And here the US is in between Namibia and Equador.
https://www.safedestinations.com/safest-countries-for-travel/

If you want an easy start, go to western Europe. It's a perfectly safe, well-organized part of the world, great public transport to take you around, pretty much everyone speaks somewhere between quarter-decent and excellent english generally better the further north you go with The Netherlands the main exception - they're top notch, information is generally given in local language and english, credit cards work everywhere, its easy to get cash from an ATM if you need it and there are lots of beautful places to visit and you can fly into most, if not all, countries direct from somewhere in the US. So as long as you can cope with the trans-atlantic flight there is really nothing to be afraid of.









deborah

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2021, 04:38:10 AM »
I was never going to travel internationally when I retired. Australia is a similar size as the contiguous US, with probably a similar amount of geographical and natural diversity, as well as lots of other things to see. Thereís enough here for a lifetime without leaving home. So I guess itís the same there.

However, I won a trip to Turkey, so I went there and extended the trip to two months (everything is a long way from Australia, so why not). I visited a lot of archeological sites in eastern Turkey from the dawn of civilisation to the Ottoman Empire, dipped my feet in the Tigris and Euphrates rivers sat in a cafe watching the clouds crossing in front of Mount Ararat. I was astounded by what I saw, and what I could see. It still amazes me when I visit places that I learnt about in primary school.

But you need to be interested in the place and what youíll see and do. When I stepped off the ferry at its most northerly stop in Greenland, and a couple asked me what there was to do there, I was flummoxed. Why would you visit a place without having an interest in it? What is the point of going somewhere just to travel (of course, the journey might be a reason - like when we drove up the Dempster highway to the Arctic Ocean)? There are wonderful things that everyone can find within a day of their home. You donít need to travel if you donít want to.

uniwelder

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2021, 06:12:14 AM »
Do you have any international friends to visit or anyone living near you locally that frequently travels internationally?  Maybe you can tag along with someone else?  My wife is from Mexico, so traveling back home with her is very easy.  I was thinking you might find a way to do something similar.

Otherwise, try going somewhere that won't intimidate you.  Quebec City in Canada is pretty awesome.  Here's a few reasons---  1) It feels like you're in Europe, but without the long distance flight.  2) Everyone will be speaking French around you, but almost everyone knows English.  3) Its still American-ish for all the general customs.  4) So much to see and do-- the old city area, fortress, waterfalls, bicycling paths, sausages of every flavor, riding the ferry, cathedral.

wenchsenior

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2021, 09:24:40 AM »
It's normal to be intimidated by a complicated thing you haven't done. I also personally found my tolerance for travel went way down with age (I'm only 50 but I have a lot of chronic health problems that add physical risk and discomfort and logistical challenges to my daily life, let alone travel).  Air travel is carbon-intensive, as well, so sticking closer to home is often more ecologically responsible. The U.S. is huge, and many people never see that much of it. So don't feel guilty if you'd like to stick closer to home. I'm constantly amazed at how much fun I've had over the years doing half-week to week-long trips (usually piggybacked on business-related travel) to random cities and other locations I might never have otherwise gone.  Hell, I still haven't seen big amounts of my home state, my adopted home state, or the state I've lived in for the past 20 years...

Having said all that, IF you have one or more compelling reasons to go to a particular international destination, it can be one of the greatest life events you'll experience.  I had wanted to go to Australia since I was a little kid, and becoming a biologist made that desire even stronger. The hassle and expense and UNBELIEVABLY SHOCKINGLY LONG plane flights were totally worth the time I spent there.  It was a life highlight.  I still dream about going back, but said health issues and aforementioned flight length, and complicated responsibilities at home keep putting me off. So I am incredibly glad I grabbed the opportunity when I had it, when things were less complicated in my life.

Same with my trip to Costa Rica.  I probably could not physically manage that trip today the way I did 15 years ago (living fairly primitive in remote jungle, sleeping in absolute shithole hotels or primitive bunks surrounded by mosquito netting, cold showers, limited electricity, limited food options). So I'm INCREDIBLY glad I did it when I did. If I did another trip there, it would have to be a lot more luxe and catered and touristy, and I'd have to spend the money to make that happen. So I'm glad I did the trip I did when I was physically capable b/c it was amazing.

Same with all my work in the BVI.  I could probably still do that type of work (with adjustments and accommodations) but I did it enough that if I never visited the Caribbean again, I wouldn't feel I was missing out. Having the opportunity to have done it is one of the greatest things in my life.

I still hanker to see Western Europe, parts of Africa, parts of Central America, New Zealand, Iceland, and Argentina.  I suspect we'll manage to get to one or two of those in my lifetime, but again, I already did the two trips I always dreamed about.

Pick either a place you have always been super interested in, OR pick a place that seems least intimidating (English commonly spoken for example).  Try that, and see if it feels worth it. I suspect it will. Then you can decide whether or not to do more.

wenchsenior

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2021, 09:25:59 AM »
Do you have any international friends to visit or anyone living near you locally that frequently travels internationally?  Maybe you can tag along with someone else?  My wife is from Mexico, so traveling back home with her is very easy.  I was thinking you might find a way to do something similar.

Otherwise, try going somewhere that won't intimidate you.  Quebec City in Canada is pretty awesome.  Here's a few reasons---  1) It feels like you're in Europe, but without the long distance flight.  2) Everyone will be speaking French around you, but almost everyone knows English.  3) Its still American-ish for all the general customs.  4) So much to see and do-- the old city area, fortress, waterfalls, bicycling paths, sausages of every flavor, riding the ferry, cathedral.

I agree with this. Dipping the toe in, etc.

kite

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2021, 09:35:13 AM »
I am envious of all of you and those who travel internationally.  When I was younger I didn't really think about it. When I was a bit less younger I thought about it quite a bit but ya know I was busy living (or not living) life to do the typical work and progess in the career...and one day syndrome.   Then more responsibilities that just doubled down on the career/income (and FI pursuit) progression (mortgage, kids, saving for it all, etc).....more one day syndrome.  Now I am a bit older (or old), FIRE'D, with kids still at home but college bound is on the horizon.   And here I am on the precipice of being able to openly travel with DW and I find myself more afraid to do so in an ever increasing amount as each year goes by.....afraid of violence, afraid of language barriers, afraid of discomfort, etc. I also don't like air travel, not afraid just get restless.     

I don't know if this is normal or not....is this a cry for help or a cautionary tale to do this when you are young.   

By ship?

I've taken a transatlantic cruise and it was amazing. Also, if you go by cruise with a major carrier, you never need to worry about a language barrier.  Although, obviously, cruises can present their own risks/problems.
However, as I've gotten older, my interest in travel is in a steady and steep decline. I like making my home and yard into it's own staycation oasis.  I think about my carbon footprint and how much waste is generated with travel. And we never want to be anywhere that we can't bring our dog.
If it's something you want to do and always wanted to do, grab life by the horns and make the most of the life you can build for yourself. There are artworks, natural wonders and events I'm glad to have seen in person.  I've had some spectacular meals that just weren't possible without flying overseas. We've done group tours (cheap, jam-packed); individual guided tours (posh, pricey); and independent travel (possible to do cheaply or expensively). But you don't have to tick things off of anyone else's bucket list except your spouse's (Alaska was the ONLY place my husband wanted to go. It would never have been my choice, but it was one of the best places we saw.  If some place means a great deal to your DW, honor that.)  It's also a whole lot easier to travel with a younger body than with an older one, so sooner rather than later is my advice. 
But if you don't really want to put yourself through the rigmarole, it's OK, too. 

Malcat

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2021, 09:46:17 AM »
There's absolutely no need to do international travel.

HOWEVER, fear of the unknown is a stupid reason not to, and the best solution is to just go somewhere, rip the bandaid off, and get yourself out of your insular bubble.

If you aren't excited about the prospect of exploring foreign lands, then don't worry about it, but if it's something you've always wanted to do and you are just getting closed off the more you age, then that's a whole other issue.

Language barriers are nothing now that there's Google translate, violence happens everywhere, and a lot of places are probably safer than where you are now.

As a woman, I would be much safer wandering around Brunei in the middle of the night than I am in my own Canadian city.

So again, there's no need to go, but don't let silly reasons hold you back either.

tooqk4u22

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2021, 10:06:59 AM »
I agree with those that said the US is vast and varied.   I have actually traveled quite a bit throughout the US (20 or so states including Hawaii plus DC but not including other states just driven through or one night places for work), and there is still a bunch I haven't done, been to Toronto and Montreal, Mexico, a couple of islands in the Caribbean.   Heck just got back from CO where it was split between posh accommodations/food and dispersed camping.   So travel in of itself isn't the issue I guess.

Europe in general doesn't have great appeal to me although DW does want to go to Italy so that will have to happen, but some of the history and Mediterranean areas are appealing but more urban experiences are not appealing that much.   I am intrigued by more exotic places that ironically scare me the most. 

The mention of Costa Rica sounds good, tried to plan a trip there a couple of years ago but ended up getting overwhelmed and fearful (problem is that I don't want to go somewhere and stay at a Hilton or some other resort and instead want to rent a car visit a couple of different places while staying in unique accommodations but then I get fearful of the unknown and am especially fearful of putting my kids in harms way). 

The transatlantic cruise sounds interesting well other than the cruise part haha

On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

I make no sense.   
« Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 10:11:43 AM by tooqk4u22 »

friedmmj

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2021, 10:40:27 AM »
I've become more aware recently of how innately fearful human beings are as a species.  It's sort of fascinating actually.  Sometimes though fear can be confused for lack of curiosity.  I have a neighbor down the street who walks his dog roughly 8 times a day.  He never once crossed the street to walk the dog on a different path much less walked on any adjacent streets other than ours.

dougules

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2021, 10:52:01 AM »
Did you not enjoy Mexico?  It's about as exotic as anywhere, really, for people from the US or Canada. 

DaMa

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2021, 10:56:21 AM »
One of my dreams is to take a transatlantic cruise to Europe, stay 6 months traveling around, then transatlantic back.

I'm a person of size (I fit in one airplane seat but usually need a belt extension) and am afraid of being treated poorly.  I don't think that fear is entirely rational, since fat discrimination exists in the US, too.

iris lily

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #19 on: July 22, 2021, 10:56:25 AM »
Iím 67 years old,

In my head I still have a sense of adventure about seeing new cities, but I had to be realistic with myself that overseas travel of the past 20 years has been damn simple. Itís been ďdamn simple ďbecause we went back-and-forth between Switzerland and the UK for about 20 years. And then, I always had DH to help negotiate our travels.

I will say that we rented a canal boat during that period And spent a week on the Shropshire canal driving our own canal houseboat and working the locks. After the first two locks, it was easy Peezy. Itís amazing how well those things are engineered! But that was about the only unusual travel we did, The rest of it was in conventional train travel in Europe.

But anywayóin the UK they speak my language. English. The money isnít that difficult to figure out.
In Switzerland we had a lot of relatives to ferry us around, but even then when we were away from relatives most everyone speaks a bit of English so we had no trouble finding our way around.

Anyway where Iím going with us is: I got tired of that coddling, Also got tired of the UK and Switzerland and I wanted something different but I still like European sensibility. So a few years ago I decided to go to Romania with DH, but I first started out in Prague by myself and figured out public transportation and the money system myself. In the Czech Republic most touristy things are covered by English and Czech languages.

In Romania we kicked  back and had a private tour guide with his own car who drove us around the country so that was completely being coddled.As an aside I will say that that was a really good vacation because DH and I didnít have to argue about how to get places, where we were going to stay that night, etc. it was all taken care of for us.

So that circles around to OP: venture out in a European trip with a tour of some sort. Either do a big tour bus thing to get started, or hire a private guide with his own car to drive you around.

Plug for Romania especially Transylvania : wonderful place to visit! I want to go back, but first I want to go to other former Eastern block countries like Estonia.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 11:05:24 AM by iris lily »

Freedom2016

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2021, 02:59:04 PM »
There's nothing wrong with not wanting to travel internationally. Personally, I had incredible wanderlust as a young person, and chose a career that paid for my international travel (I've visited 32 countries, most on a client's dime).

The best reason to travel internationally, IMO, is for the mind-expanding learning that comes with exposure to people and places that are (very) different than you're used to. A corollary is the learning about yourself that can come with having to adapt on-the-fly to unfamiliar situations. I learned how to be resilient, resourceful, and grateful... and I'm a different person today thanks to spending time in countries like Iran, Brunei, and Ethiopia over the years.

However, like others who have posted in this thread, my appetite for international travel has waned with age.  I'm like Kite, and am enjoying making my home/yard into a staycation oasis.

reeshau

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #21 on: July 22, 2021, 02:59:34 PM »
Some time spent on TripAdvisor forums will be very worthwhile, as will time reading Rick Steves (if you're going to Europe)! Eyewitness Travel guide are also great and very well illustrated. 

+1 For the recommendation for Rick Steves; not just his book, but the travel series on PBS.  You can also stream it for free.  Rick refers to Europe as the kiddie pool of international travel--so much common history, it's easy to learn all you need to travel anywhere.  And while he very much supports independent travel, if you are determined but petrified he also runs small-group tours, so you can see how It's done before you try it yourself.

First traveled internationally on a high school German class trip, in 1987.  Got to cross the Berlin Wall.  Can't do that any more.  Been traveling, for fun and for work, ever since.  Have not gotten to South America or Africa...yet.

American GenX

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #22 on: July 22, 2021, 03:07:17 PM »
No only is it OK not to internationally travel - it's better that you don't.  I've never had the desire personally, and there are plenty of better things you can spend your money on... or just save money in general without the travel.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #23 on: July 22, 2021, 03:07:49 PM »
OP, itís a shame that youíre living your life so controlled by fear. Thereís a profound line in the book ďWho Moved My Cheese?Ē that I reflect on constantly and share with many people here that raise issues around fear: ďwhat would you do if you werenít afraid?Ē  You only get this one life to have these types of experiences that challenge you and excite you. Iím a pretty experienced traveler and I could list a plethora of reasons to travel and counter-reasons to your concerns around travel, however it all begins with you deciding what you want from your life and from yourself. 10 years ago I dealt with a traumatic experience and coming out of that I vowed to live my life with less fear, because thatís what was causing me the most damage. Did I become reckless? No. Did I make healthier, informed decisions truer to myself that brought me beautiful adventures and helped me grow as a human? Absolutely.

So, again: what would you do if you werenít afraid?

Answer that for yourself and then work backwards and see how your life changes.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #24 on: July 22, 2021, 03:33:29 PM »
One of the big advantages of visiting different countries is that you see different ways of life.  It is too easy to think that the way you live is standard.  This is not just aimed at Americans, it is good for everyone to see different ways of life.

For an American, Canada and Mexico are foreign countries (yes, they count as international travel) that are easy to get to.  Well, once the pandemic is under control enough for borders to open.  For fully vaccinated visitors.

Travel is what you want it to be.  I did slow travel just before the pandemic, 3 months away, most in New Zealand and the rest in Australia.  Some of it I stayed with friends, some I did on my own.  And I retired at 63 a few years ago and was on my own.  And I drove on the left. 

It is doable.

Dreamer40

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #25 on: July 22, 2021, 05:43:47 PM »
A less intimidating way to travel is to join a tour group. Some of them suck, but I know many people, myself included, whoíve had great trips with GAdventures. They keep the groups very small and you travel with a guide who is usually a local in the country youíre visiting. Or at least is a local of an area nearby. Iíve traveled extensively since I was a teenager (much of it solo) and was surprised how much I got out of group travel with a local guide. My Cambodian guide was the kindest most-generous person, who really helped me understand local culture in a way I could not have discovered on my own. Anyway, the groups arrange all your lodging and transportation so you can spend more time on other stuff. You donít have to stay with the group all day if you want to go do your own thing (like if youíre in a city). Itís also a great way to travel with friends or family. Each person simply signs up and shows up, instead of trying to coordinate group logistics. Finally, you can still go to their website and get ideas for your own itinerary if you actually want to travel solo.

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2021, 05:50:11 PM »
I agree with those that said the US is vast and varied.   I have actually traveled quite a bit throughout the US (20 or so states including Hawaii plus DC but not including other states just driven through or one night places for work), and there is still a bunch I haven't done, been to Toronto and Montreal, Mexico, a couple of islands in the Caribbean.   Heck just got back from CO where it was split between posh accommodations/food and dispersed camping.   So travel in of itself isn't the issue I guess.

Europe in general doesn't have great appeal to me although DW does want to go to Italy so that will have to happen, but some of the history and Mediterranean areas are appealing but more urban experiences are not appealing that much.   I am intrigued by more exotic places that ironically scare me the most. 

The mention of Costa Rica sounds good, tried to plan a trip there a couple of years ago but ended up getting overwhelmed and fearful (problem is that I don't want to go somewhere and stay at a Hilton or some other resort and instead want to rent a car visit a couple of different places while staying in unique accommodations but then I get fearful of the unknown and am especially fearful of putting my kids in harms way). 

The transatlantic cruise sounds interesting well other than the cruise part haha

On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

I make no sense.
I was going to recommend trying the Bahamas or a Caribbean island like Grand Cayman but sounds like you already have some travel under your belt.

With the travel experience you already have especially Mexico I would say you got this.

Italy ( especially Rome), Germany, France, Great Britain, Switzerland and Costa Rica were all easier than Mexico. Actually I would say Cuba was the only place that was more alien / intimidating than Mexico.


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Missy B

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #27 on: July 22, 2021, 07:15:59 PM »
I am envious of all of you and those who travel internationally.  When I was younger I didn't really think about it. When I was a bit less younger I thought about it quite a bit but ya know I was busy living (or not living) life to do the typical work and progess in the career...and one day syndrome.   Then more responsibilities that just doubled down on the career/income (and FI pursuit) progression (mortgage, kids, saving for it all, etc).....more one day syndrome.  Now I am a bit older (or old), FIRE'D, with kids still at home but college bound is on the horizon.   And here I am on the precipice of being able to openly travel with DW and I find myself more afraid to do so in an ever increasing amount as each year goes by.....afraid of violence, afraid of language barriers, afraid of discomfort, etc. I also don't like air travel, not afraid just get restless.     

I don't know if this is normal or not....is this a cry for help or a cautionary tale to do this when you are young.   

By ship?

I've taken a transatlantic cruise and it was amazing. Also, if you go by cruise with a major carrier, you never need to worry about a language barrier.  Although, obviously, cruises can present their own risks/problems.
However, as I've gotten older, my interest in travel is in a steady and steep decline. I like making my home and yard into it's own staycation oasis.  I think about my carbon footprint and how much waste is generated with travel. And we never want to be anywhere that we can't bring our dog.
If it's something you want to do and always wanted to do, grab life by the horns and make the most of the life you can build for yourself. There are artworks, natural wonders and events I'm glad to have seen in person.  I've had some spectacular meals that just weren't possible without flying overseas. We've done group tours (cheap, jam-packed); individual guided tours (posh, pricey); and independent travel (possible to do cheaply or expensively). But you don't have to tick things off of anyone else's bucket list except your spouse's (Alaska was the ONLY place my husband wanted to go. It would never have been my choice, but it was one of the best places we saw.  If some place means a great deal to your DW, honor that.)  It's also a whole lot easier to travel with a younger body than with an older one, so sooner rather than later is my advice. 
But if you don't really want to put yourself through the rigmarole, it's OK, too.
+1.
I was going to suggest this -- wherever you are in the english speaking world, there are cruise ships and there are trains that go to them.

This is my plan, because flying sucks deeply since 9/11.
Ships take longer than planes, but when time is no issue, why not arrive well rested and acclimated to the time change? I've seen inside cabins on transatlantic passage for the same price as a flight,  so it isn't even a cost issue.

Missy B

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #28 on: July 22, 2021, 07:26:20 PM »
One of my dreams is to take a transatlantic cruise to Europe, stay 6 months traveling around, then transatlantic back.

I'm a person of size (I fit in one airplane seat but usually need a belt extension) and am afraid of being treated poorly.  I don't think that fear is entirely rational, since fat discrimination exists in the US, too.
That's great and I think your fear isn't irrational.
It's one thing to be treated badly when you're on home turf and know what's what, another to have people do that when you're away from home, (more vulnerable) and trying to enjoy yourself.

tooqk4u22

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #29 on: July 22, 2021, 10:17:17 PM »
I agree with those that said the US is vast and varied.   I have actually traveled quite a bit throughout the US (20 or so states including Hawaii plus DC but not including other states just driven through or one night places for work), and there is still a bunch I haven't done, been to Toronto and Montreal, Mexico, a couple of islands in the Caribbean.   Heck just got back from CO where it was split between posh accommodations/food and dispersed camping.   So travel in of itself isn't the issue I guess.

Europe in general doesn't have great appeal to me although DW does want to go to Italy so that will have to happen, but some of the history and Mediterranean areas are appealing but more urban experiences are not appealing that much.   I am intrigued by more exotic places that ironically scare me the most. 

The mention of Costa Rica sounds good, tried to plan a trip there a couple of years ago but ended up getting overwhelmed and fearful (problem is that I don't want to go somewhere and stay at a Hilton or some other resort and instead want to rent a car visit a couple of different places while staying in unique accommodations but then I get fearful of the unknown and am especially fearful of putting my kids in harms way). 

The transatlantic cruise sounds interesting well other than the cruise part haha

On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

I make no sense.
I was going to recommend trying the Bahamas or a Caribbean island like Grand Cayman but sounds like you already have some travel under your belt.

With the travel experience you already have especially Mexico I would say you got this.

Italy ( especially Rome), Germany, France, Great Britain, Switzerland and Costa Rica were all easier than Mexico. Actually I would say Cuba was the only place that was more alien / intimidating than Mexico.


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Many of the places you indicate don't really scare  me other than the air travel.  And as somewhat eluded to aren't as interesting to me, but my envision of Costa Rica trip was far more intimidating than Mexico....mostly bc of my unrealistic expectations and ideals of traversing the whole country in a week or twos time.

Part of the problem beyond being "afraid" is its not worth it to me if I can only do a week or two (ya know, kids and their schedules).

Zamboni

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #30 on: July 22, 2021, 10:50:11 PM »
Many countries have seemed safer to me than the US, at least in terms of violent crime. Of course, I hear gunshots almost every night while I lay in my bed . . . I'm not exactly in the safest city. Traffic safety, now that is another matter entirely.

The fear of the language barrier is a real thing. Here is an example: between my other half and I, we speak fluent English and Spanish and passable French and Italian. So, when an opportunity to travel to Malaysia presented itself, we were facing a real language barrier for the first time in our lives together. My other half seemed especially freaked out about it. Didn't want to go. We were so worried about it that we decided to go to Singapore for a few days on the way there, because a friend of mine described Singapore as "Asia-light" (which is accurate because it was an English colony for so long.)

And you know what? It was fine in Malaysia. An absolutely amazing number of people abroad speak fairly good English in every country I've visited. And even in a rural area in Malaysia where fewer people spoke English, smiling and gesturing worked pretty darn well.

We stayed at a Hilton in Malaysia as our home base and still felt like we were in Malaysia. The executive level was really cheap, so we had access to the executive lounge, which had a very Asia version of every meal and snack time. Looking back, I wish we'd stayed a few days in a traditional long house . . . but, as I said, we were nervous. It's normal to be a little worried.

Now that I've traveled abroad a bit, it's hard to imagine my life without it. You just don't know what you don't know. You think you know something about Cuba, perhaps? Not until you go there. Same for most countries. They are never quite how you imagine they will be. And my experience is that the least touristy countries are the most fun because local people are more eager to talk with foreigners.

the_fixer

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #31 on: July 22, 2021, 11:11:12 PM »
I agree with those that said the US is vast and varied.   I have actually traveled quite a bit throughout the US (20 or so states including Hawaii plus DC but not including other states just driven through or one night places for work), and there is still a bunch I haven't done, been to Toronto and Montreal, Mexico, a couple of islands in the Caribbean.   Heck just got back from CO where it was split between posh accommodations/food and dispersed camping.   So travel in of itself isn't the issue I guess.

Europe in general doesn't have great appeal to me although DW does want to go to Italy so that will have to happen, but some of the history and Mediterranean areas are appealing but more urban experiences are not appealing that much.   I am intrigued by more exotic places that ironically scare me the most. 

The mention of Costa Rica sounds good, tried to plan a trip there a couple of years ago but ended up getting overwhelmed and fearful (problem is that I don't want to go somewhere and stay at a Hilton or some other resort and instead want to rent a car visit a couple of different places while staying in unique accommodations but then I get fearful of the unknown and am especially fearful of putting my kids in harms way). 

The transatlantic cruise sounds interesting well other than the cruise part haha

On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

I make no sense.
I was going to recommend trying the Bahamas or a Caribbean island like Grand Cayman but sounds like you already have some travel under your belt.

With the travel experience you already have especially Mexico I would say you got this.

Italy ( especially Rome), Germany, France, Great Britain, Switzerland and Costa Rica were all easier than Mexico. Actually I would say Cuba was the only place that was more alien / intimidating than Mexico.


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Many of the places you indicate don't really scare  me other than the air travel.  And as somewhat eluded to aren't as interesting to me, but my envision of Costa Rica trip was far more intimidating than Mexico....mostly bc of my unrealistic expectations and ideals of traversing the whole country in a week or twos time.

Part of the problem beyond being "afraid" is its not worth it to me if I can only do a week or two (ya know, kids and their schedules).

Sorry was not making light or trying to ignore your fear of flying I know many people including my wife that hate it and my FIL is terrified of flying just trying to focus on what I know as I have no advice on dealing with fear of flying.

I also try to make my trips as long as possible but for different reasons. For me it is the expense and hassle of getting to some destinations.

The further or longer it takes the longer I require my stay to be

We are (hopefully) going to Costa Rica later this year for a little over 3 weeks. Last time I went it was for 10 weeks but my job only allows so much time off :(

Costa Rica is a small country, smaller than most states in the US and then the main areas people visit only take up a small portion of the country. I was discussing it with a co-worker the other day and he always wanted to go but was intimidated thinking it was a big place when I had him compare it to the size of a US state he was amazed how small it is and they are now planning to go in February.

For example from the Liberia airport you are only a few hours (driving slow) from the beaches like Potrero, flamingo, Tamarindo and the volcano Arenal both areas are popular and have shuttles that run daily. Jaco is a short drive from San Jose, manual Antonio is maybe another hour beyond Jaco.

It really is a tiny country so two weeks split in the upper part and another week down in Manual Antonio and you can see the different areas and not feel rushed at all.

I wish you the best, it sounds like you get out and do things so that is great sometimes you just have to do what you are comfortable with just beware of letting your world get smaller and smaller it happens so easy.

From time to time I catch myself doing it and have to reset my boundaries and push my comfort level.


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Malcat

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #32 on: July 23, 2021, 06:02:39 AM »
I agree with those that said the US is vast and varied.   I have actually traveled quite a bit throughout the US (20 or so states including Hawaii plus DC but not including other states just driven through or one night places for work), and there is still a bunch I haven't done, been to Toronto and Montreal, Mexico, a couple of islands in the Caribbean.   Heck just got back from CO where it was split between posh accommodations/food and dispersed camping.   So travel in of itself isn't the issue I guess.

Europe in general doesn't have great appeal to me although DW does want to go to Italy so that will have to happen, but some of the history and Mediterranean areas are appealing but more urban experiences are not appealing that much.   I am intrigued by more exotic places that ironically scare me the most. 

The mention of Costa Rica sounds good, tried to plan a trip there a couple of years ago but ended up getting overwhelmed and fearful (problem is that I don't want to go somewhere and stay at a Hilton or some other resort and instead want to rent a car visit a couple of different places while staying in unique accommodations but then I get fearful of the unknown and am especially fearful of putting my kids in harms way). 

The transatlantic cruise sounds interesting well other than the cruise part haha

On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

I make no sense.
I was going to recommend trying the Bahamas or a Caribbean island like Grand Cayman but sounds like you already have some travel under your belt.

With the travel experience you already have especially Mexico I would say you got this.

Italy ( especially Rome), Germany, France, Great Britain, Switzerland and Costa Rica were all easier than Mexico. Actually I would say Cuba was the only place that was more alien / intimidating than Mexico.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Many of the places you indicate don't really scare  me other than the air travel.  And as somewhat eluded to aren't as interesting to me, but my envision of Costa Rica trip was far more intimidating than Mexico....mostly bc of my unrealistic expectations and ideals of traversing the whole country in a week or twos time.

Part of the problem beyond being "afraid" is its not worth it to me if I can only do a week or two (ya know, kids and their schedules).

If it's not worth it to you, then don't do it.

I guess I'm just not understanding what the issue is???

kite

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2021, 09:47:38 AM »
One of my dreams is to take a transatlantic cruise to Europe, stay 6 months traveling around, then transatlantic back.

I'm a person of size (I fit in one airplane seat but usually need a belt extension) and am afraid of being treated poorly.  I don't think that fear is entirely rational, since fat discrimination exists in the US, too.

A cruise would absolutely be the way to go if you have the means. Everything about the ships is accommodating to people of all sizes and ranges of mobility. They know who their customers are and don't want to exclude increasing percentages of the population. That means being accessible, having larger furniture, accessible rooms, places to stow and charge scooters.
I was on a TA cruise nearly 10 years ago on a brand new ship.  In a presentation given by the ship's officers they described how they added dialysis to the offerings from the medical department. They really want all the business they can get, and it means making all customers feel welcome.   


draco44

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2021, 10:25:39 AM »
I personally love travel, but your life is your own and if you don't want to travel internationally no one's making you. But since you seem to be thinking about it a lot, my suggestion would be to go somewhere at least once. If you hate it, you will have at least overcome fears about the unknown and can from a more informed position go about your life with increased confidence that travelling abroad just isn't your thing. And if you do like your trip, that's great too.

Reading through this chat, I was surprised to see that there wasn't much talk about how that generally speaking, people you encounter while traveling will help you! Sometimes locals will be genuinely excited to interact with a foreigner, sometimes they'll just be mildly curious or amused by you and help out of sympathy, and sometimes (a bit more cynically) they just want your money and will gladly help you stumble through a transaction to get your cash. Sure, some people won't want to deal with you or may shout at you or something, but that's true anywhere in the world.

Re. language barrier concerns, my top advice is to lower your expectations for the depth of interactions you will have with locals and maintain an attitude of good humor and humility. If you don't speak more than a few words of the language of where you are going (do at least be able to say basic pleasantries - making that minimum effort goes a long way) there's no way you're going to be having deep geopolitical discussions with people, unless they speak English too. But at a minimum you'll be able to feed yourself and see interesting things and read about them in English in guidebooks you either buy or bring with you. You can also look for ways to interact with people that don't require a shared language. Playing chess has worked for me in the past. I have a relative who would bring juggling balls as an icebreaker.

Also on the topic of language, just accept going in that you will make an ass out of yourself at some point, even in basic interactions. I once got flummoxed while ordering food at a roadside stand in Costa Rica that turned out to have multiple portion size options for everything they served. The kind waitress drew little and big circles on a paper napkin until I figured out what was going on. Another time abroad I was in a bakery and wanted to ask "What's that one? What flavor is inside?" but apparently I said something closer to "What is the meaning and deeper cosmic significance of this object?" The clerk laughed and laughed, but it was clear from context what I was talking about and I got my pastry in the end. As long as you just smile sheepishly and stay pleasant, I've found that people will work with you. It's the tourists that yell and get agitated that people can't stand.

Finally, there are many different styles of travel and if you have money to spend, you can use the power of money to remove many of the pain points you outline. Concerned about logistics of traveling within a foreign country? Book a group tour. Think tours are stupid and over-commercialized? Hire a private guide to walk or drive you around. Crappy hotel room? Switch to a different room or hotel. There's no teleportation yet to bypass the annoyances of air travel, but once on site, you can spend your way to comfort if you are so inclined.


dougules

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #35 on: July 23, 2021, 11:12:47 AM »
Many of the places you indicate don't really scare  me other than the air travel.  And as somewhat eluded to aren't as interesting to me, but my envision of Costa Rica trip was far more intimidating than Mexico....mostly bc of my unrealistic expectations and ideals of traversing the whole country in a week or twos time.

Part of the problem beyond being "afraid" is its not worth it to me if I can only do a week or two (ya know, kids and their schedules).

Costa Rica is good intro to Latin America.  It's fairly benign, and it has a lot of tourist infrastructure.  It's also a small country, smaller than West Virginia.  And it's relatively close to the US with a lot of flight options, so whatever amount of time you'd spend on a long domestic trip would work for Costa Rica, too.   I'm actually closer to Costa Rica than to California.

Do you want to get over your fear of flying, or do you just not want to fly?

Do you really want to travel, or do you just feel like you ought to for some reason?

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #36 on: July 23, 2021, 11:13:25 AM »
I'm definitely one of those people who lives in some level of fear, with a long struggle in social situations. I know I'm going to humiliate myself, because I do it too often at home (ha ha). Traveling to Europe strikes me as too intense, overwhelming, given my limited vacation time. My primary goal of vacation is relaxation. (Edit to add: Most European destinations require two layovers from my point of origin)
« Last Edit: July 23, 2021, 11:30:41 AM by Channel-Z »

uniwelder

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #37 on: July 23, 2021, 11:16:49 AM »
On one hand I don't feel I need to travel internationally and on another I want to experience some different cultures.  Slow immersive travel is also more appealing.

It sounds like summer break will be a great time for the whole family to rent a place for a month. Or wait until the kids are in college and itís you and the wife. Take part in a language immersion program or an exchange with someplace like WorkAway. Either will have you living with a host family, participating in regular life that you seem to be interested in.

9patch

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #38 on: July 23, 2021, 11:46:51 AM »
If you do want to go to Costa Rica, you should! For your first international trip, it's okay to stay in a hotel. Even though you may want to have a "genuine" experience, if it's your first time traveling, you should just go ahead and stay in a hotel, get a rental car, etc. Also, to not worry about things like language and safety, you could travel to safe English speaking places first. For example, you could go to England, like to the Lake district in the north. It's very rural and peaceful.

lifeandlimb

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #39 on: July 23, 2021, 12:12:17 PM »
I know a few people who got into traveling internationally a little later in life by using tour groups as a way to break the ice. That way you're not alone, and you don't have to manage the logistics all by yourself. If you can afford to do it, why not? Ease into it, take it easy on yourself, and don't expect to conform to other people's travel styles. I know some people who will still join a tour group in a new country where they don't know the language, for the first day or two, and if they feel confident after that, they may travel without the group for a few days after.


9patch

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #40 on: July 23, 2021, 12:17:34 PM »
That's a good point, a tour is a good idea. My friend works for Road Scholar. They do trips internationally for age 50 and older, and combine education with travel.

Adventine

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #41 on: July 23, 2021, 12:39:24 PM »
There is such a huge spectrum of possibilities in international travel, from the super-basic-cheapo-DIY kind to the ultra-high-end-luxury-I-don't-want-to-plan-anything-I'll-pay someone-to-plan-it-all-for-me. There are options for every level of comfort / discomfort. Money goes a long way to ease a lot of the inconveniences and safety concerns people have about travelling.

It's just a question of what you'd regret more:

Do you see yourself looking back at your life and thinking, "I wish I'd tried travelling to XYZ, even just once" ?

Or are you more along the lines of "Meh, looking back, I had better things to do with my time and money than international travel."

flyingaway

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #42 on: July 24, 2021, 07:51:28 PM »
I am envious of all of you and those who travel internationally.  When I was younger I didn't really think about it. When I was a bit less younger I thought about it quite a bit but ya know I was busy living (or not living) life to do the typical work and progess in the career...and one day syndrome.   Then more responsibilities that just doubled down on the career/income (and FI pursuit) progression (mortgage, kids, saving for it all, etc).....more one day syndrome.  Now I am a bit older (or old), FIRE'D, with kids still at home but college bound is on the horizon.   And here I am on the precipice of being able to openly travel with DW and I find myself more afraid to do so in an ever increasing amount as each year goes by.....afraid of violence, afraid of language barriers, afraid of discomfort, etc. I also don't like air travel, not afraid just get restless.     

I don't know if this is normal or not....is this a cry for help or a cautionary tale to do this when you are young.   

Life can be wonderful without travelling to anywhere if you don't like it.

Zikoris

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #43 on: July 24, 2021, 08:08:10 PM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Malcat

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #44 on: July 25, 2021, 06:03:17 AM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.

tooqk4u22

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #45 on: July 25, 2021, 07:45:52 AM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.


Ok, this isn't a fear issue like I am hiding in my basement waiting for the world to end or me doing search of saybcosta Rica or Italy and suddenly start sweating and shaking.  It's not a phobia.   

Sure I fear being in a foreign place where I don't speak the language or know where I am or how to get around both of which bring a somewhat increased risk, but those feelings are probably more common than not. And there countries that do carry increased risks, even if the US itself can be a dangerous place.   I am not afraid of flying as clearly I have flown plenty but a am fearful of spending time Ina tin can for many many hours without being able to move (flying is awful). 

So figuring the balance between the incremental risks, inconveniences, and frustrations with the desire to see some new places and experiences is the issue.   Maybe until now i didn't have the time or it wasn't worth it Maybe going forward it will won't be.   

Malcat

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #46 on: July 25, 2021, 08:21:35 AM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.


Ok, this isn't a fear issue like I am hiding in my basement waiting for the world to end or me doing search of saybcosta Rica or Italy and suddenly start sweating and shaking.  It's not a phobia.   

Sure I fear being in a foreign place where I don't speak the language or know where I am or how to get around both of which bring a somewhat increased risk, but those feelings are probably more common than not. And there countries that do carry increased risks, even if the US itself can be a dangerous place.   I am not afraid of flying as clearly I have flown plenty but a am fearful of spending time Ina tin can for many many hours without being able to move (flying is awful). 

So figuring the balance between the incremental risks, inconveniences, and frustrations with the desire to see some new places and experiences is the issue.   Maybe until now i didn't have the time or it wasn't worth it Maybe going forward it will won't be.

Then as I asked before, is this even really an issue for you?

I can't really tell what the problem is exactly.

tooqk4u22

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #47 on: July 25, 2021, 09:31:18 AM »

Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.


Ok, this isn't a fear issue like I am hiding in my basement waiting for the world to end or me doing search of saybcosta Rica or Italy and suddenly start sweating and shaking.  It's not a phobia.   

Sure I fear being in a foreign place where I don't speak the language or know where I am or how to get around both of which bring a somewhat increased risk, but those feelings are probably more common than not. And there countries that do carry increased risks, even if the US itself can be a dangerous place.   I am not afraid of flying as clearly I have flown plenty but a am fearful of spending time Ina tin can for many many hours without being able to move (flying is awful). 

So figuring the balance between the incremental risks, inconveniences, and frustrations with the desire to see some new places and experiences is the issue.   Maybe until now i didn't have the time or it wasn't worth it Maybe going forward it will won't be.

Then as I asked before, is this even really an issue for you?

I can't really tell what the problem is exactly.


Thanks for your continued lack of insightfulness with a dose of snarkiness. It's like someone saying they are afraid to have kids and you saying that the fear is driving your life and you should get help with overcoming your fear of children.....except that obviouslly they are not actually afraid of kids (scary things that they are..haha) but all the responsibilities and unknowns of having kids. 

There is a difference between flying to London (not interesting nor fear inducing) vs backpacking through SE Asia (maybe interesting but likely not to happen as it would send my fear/discomfort limit into overdrive).   I am certainly not unique with this.  Others have provided helpful views and suggestions and overall contributed to the thread.


Malcat

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #48 on: July 25, 2021, 09:35:19 AM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.


Ok, this isn't a fear issue like I am hiding in my basement waiting for the world to end or me doing search of saybcosta Rica or Italy and suddenly start sweating and shaking.  It's not a phobia.   

Sure I fear being in a foreign place where I don't speak the language or know where I am or how to get around both of which bring a somewhat increased risk, but those feelings are probably more common than not. And there countries that do carry increased risks, even if the US itself can be a dangerous place.   I am not afraid of flying as clearly I have flown plenty but a am fearful of spending time Ina tin can for many many hours without being able to move (flying is awful). 

So figuring the balance between the incremental risks, inconveniences, and frustrations with the desire to see some new places and experiences is the issue.   Maybe until now i didn't have the time or it wasn't worth it Maybe going forward it will won't be.

Then as I asked before, is this even really an issue for you?

I can't really tell what the problem is exactly.


Thanks for your continued lack of insightfulness with a dose of snarkiness. It's like someone saying they are afraid to have kids and you saying that the fear is driving your life and you should get help with overcoming your fear of children.....except that obviouslly they are not actually afraid of kids (scary things that they are..haha) but all the responsibilities and unknowns of having kids. 

There is a difference between flying to London (not interesting nor fear inducing) vs backpacking through SE Asia (maybe interesting but likely not to happen as it would send my fear/discomfort limit into overdrive).   I am certainly not unique with this.  Others have provided helpful views and suggestions and overall contributed to the thread.

Not being snarky, trying to understand to be able to actually offer helpful input since my input so far is missing the mark.
I'm not known for being snarky.

Zikoris

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Re: Afraid of international travel?
« Reply #49 on: July 25, 2021, 11:47:36 AM »
Maybe you should ignore the travel aspect for now and focus on the fact that you're letting fear take over your life and stop you from doing things?

Start doing something that scares you every day until you don't have that problem anymore. Get that brain retrained.

Exactly, to me, the fear issue is a much bigger danger to your overall quality of life than whether or not you travel to foreign countries.


Ok, this isn't a fear issue like I am hiding in my basement waiting for the world to end or me doing search of saybcosta Rica or Italy and suddenly start sweating and shaking.  It's not a phobia.   

Sure I fear being in a foreign place where I don't speak the language or know where I am or how to get around both of which bring a somewhat increased risk, but those feelings are probably more common than not. And there countries that do carry increased risks, even if the US itself can be a dangerous place.   I am not afraid of flying as clearly I have flown plenty but a am fearful of spending time Ina tin can for many many hours without being able to move (flying is awful). 

So figuring the balance between the incremental risks, inconveniences, and frustrations with the desire to see some new places and experiences is the issue.   Maybe until now i didn't have the time or it wasn't worth it Maybe going forward it will won't be.

You're not wrong about it being common. TONS of people miss out on doing all kind of stuff they's probably love due to fear. I'm just suggesting an approach to deal with it, because wouldn't it be nice to be able to do the things you want without fear? As someone who travels a lot, I can tell you that travelling to really different places (including sketchy places) where people don't speak English is an AMAZING experience that I wouldn't want anyone to miss out on, especially not because they let fear stop them.