Horrible Travel Advice

Horrible Travel Advice

Horrible travel advice can be found everywhere. From magazines, to blogs, to news articles, to TripAdvisor, to your best friend, or that bitter co-worker that has 5 weeks of vacation, but only uses a week of it to go Christmas shopping. Reading travel related content is one of my favourite things to do. But sometimes I can’t help but think “Who the &%@! writes this stuff!?!?” Also, as a frequent traveler, I often get ignorant comments about my destination choices. Here are some horrible pieces of advice that I have read or heard along the way.

1. Don’t save in your 20s
This article is one of the most idiotic things that I have read. It basically encourages people in their 20s to waste their time and money away instead of saving it. I travel because I saved. There is NOTHING wrong with having savings. And having worked as a Pension Consultant and seeing people’s savings accounts in retirement and hearing their retirement savings nightmares, you better be saving the first chance you get, even if that is just $100 a month.

2. You have to stay in a…

Some people will tell you that you have to stay in a hostel, or hotel, or AirBnB when going on vacation. Quite frankly, stay wherever you please. I for one have never stayed in a dormitory style of lodging because:

1. I am a light sleeper
2. I sleep walk and talk so that would freak the heck out of strangers, and
3. I like the comfort of privacy

3. “10 things to do in your (insert age)”

These articles drive me up the wall! In my opinion, travel should not be limited to a certain age. Maybe you are young at heart or an old soul. Do what feels right for you and stop letting society control what you want to do, including telling you at what age you should do what. So to those who write such posts, please stop. You are discriminating and stressing people out more than need be.

4. Quit your job to travel

From an HR (Human Resources) perspective, this is not great advice. Leaving gaps on your resume is not advisable in our current economic state if you plan on having a serious and long term career upon return. Having worked as a recruiter, I can say that I was trained to “weed out” large unexplained gaps in employment! Consider taking a leave of absence from your current job instead. When you come home you will have financial security while you look for something else if need be, and that gap will be filled.

Enjoyed a beautiful sunset while working in Kopaonik, Serbia

5. Go on vacation to get over your problems

Yes a vacation can help us temporarily forget about our problems back home, but those problems will be waiting for you when you get back. Don’t travel to runaway from something or someone. Travel because you want to enjoy some time away for the sake of travel itself.

6. Don’t bother getting travel insurance

Get insurance. You never know what can happen. If you can’t afford travel insurance then in reality you can’t afford to travel. Some destinations are really expensive when it comes to medical care (Hello USA!), so be sure to pay that extra cash to save yourself a headache, even if you don’t end up using the travel insurance, you will be happy that you have it should anything happen.

7. Don’t go somewhere where they don’t speak English

English may be the universal language, but you really don’t need it. I have been living in Korea for 5 months now, and although I barely know any Korean, I still manage to get by with using gestures, smiling, and using the words that I do know. That should never be a reason to not travel. My late grandmother came to visit us in Canada, by herself, not speaking a word of English, and even had a connecting flight cancelled along the way which resulted in her having to spend the night in a hotel in another country in which she did not speak the language. If she could have done it, anyone can.

If I didn’t travel to Japan, where English is not the first language, I would have never met this wonderful artist!

8. Just wing it 

I have heard stories from friends who did not plan a single thing about their trip except the flights and accommodations, and ended up frustrated because of logistical problems. Yes, I agree you should not stick to some strict itinerary as you may find other interesting things along the way, but you should still have a general idea of what you will do. Inform yourself on how to get from point A to point B, the working hours of the things you want to see and do, as well as getting a general idea of what is close to your lodging. There is no sense of wasting the little time you have in a place because you are constantly lost and confused.

Have you heard any other horrible travel advice? Please be sure to share below!

Happy Travels Everyone!


6 thoughts on “Horrible Travel Advice”

  1. Totally agree! Especially the English-country bit. I have a lot of friends who insist on learning the language in-depth or they wont travel there. Hand gestures, smiles and a few key words (hello, thank you, sorry) go a long way.

    And double yes to travel insurance! Only one minor error in your story… the bill was closer to $15,000 USD 😉

  2. I couldn't remember the exact price so I said over $10,000. I will update it now. Thanks!

    The language barrier is such a stupid and weak excuse not to travel. It annoys me beyond belief!

  3. I agree with all of this! I notice that people that rarely travel love to try and give me these types of travel advice (usually my patients at work). The 10 reasons to travel in your 20's nonsense and the quit your job and travel ones annoy me the most! You can travel whenever in life that you want and I think the people that say quit your job and travel are a little out of touch with reality I think.

  4. i think you can 'just wing it' if youre that sort of person. The more I age, and travel, the more I plan. Pretty much agree with every point, nice article!

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