Your bags are packed, you head out into the world full of wanderlust and some nerves, you start your adventure but then you’re hit by traveling realisms! What do you do?
There are two sides to every story and It’s no different with long term traveling. There is the mind blowing, creating unforgettable memories, experience things you couldn’t imagine, life changing side and then there is the other side..
(Please note: The traveling realisms posts in this series mostly applies to those looking to or are budget or solo traveling/backpacking long term. I.E 6 months+. To those only traveling for a few days or a couple of weeks, these posts probably don’t have any relevance to you.)
It’s the side we don’t like to think about, the side that doesn’t get talked about much, because…well It’s not glamorous, not pretty or appealing – It’s the traveling realisms & realities of everyday life, the things that get edited out of what you read and see.
Have you ever noticed how when you research traveling you’re mostly only shown the shiny side? You get told about the adventures, you see the jaw dropping picturesque scenery, the incredible stories but where is the in between stuff?
For example you read an article about experiencing a night market, it talks about the vibrancy, the mouth watering food, the atmosphere but there is no mention of the communication issues. Or you see pictures from the highest peaks, tempting you, telling you how you can experience it, but it conveniently leaves out the struggles, and arduous journey it took to get there.
Before your long term travels begin, you will read and see so much about how easy it is to pack your bags and travel the world without mentioning or making you aware of the nuts and bolts, the everyday life.
- Next to no mention about downer days
- Times you will feel lonely
- Times you might run out of money and low on funds
- How to replenish depleted funds
- The possibility of falling into a party lifestyle
- What happens when the novelty runs out
- The possibility of getting bored
- Feeling like crap, accidents, things going wrong, making bad decisions
- Transport and accommodation not being what you expected
Our fault too
All the blame cannot be placed on the things we see and read though, we have to shoulder the blame too because we don’t want to really think about it.
We are all guilty of it. When the time comes to plan a trip, the excitement, nervousness, fear and anxiety takes over, we seek out all the amazing things we will experience. We think of the highs, discovery and adventure but we rarely think about what everyday life will be like. We build pictures in our heads, thinking of jumping from one adventure to the next, we don’t think about the in-between days, or how we will feel months into our travel life once the novelty runs out.
It’s only once we experience it for ourselves that we think ‘Oh I wish I knew about this before’.
Helping you become aware of traveling realisms for your future travels
This traveling realisms & realities series was created to help you for your future long term travels whether that’s solo or budget traveling. It’s to help you be aware of the traveling realisms & realities, so when you’re faced with the situation you will know how to cope, overcome, adapt and even thrive rather than panicking.
I’ve traveled all over the world for over a decade, I’ve been through most situations, I’ve cursed that I wasn’t made aware of certain things beforehand and I’ve met so many first time travelers who didn’t know how to deal with situations because they just weren’t aware. So this series is to help prevent that happening to you.
Traveling realisms series covers
Long term travel can be gruelling at times, there are times you have to dig deep, find motivation to keep the lifestyle going and you do have to have mental toughness. It’s not a long holiday that’s for sure.
You have to be willing and prepared for both sides of the coin, the good and the bad, take the rough with the smooth. However the series of posts below will help you prepare for when traveling realisms appear for you.
The traveling realisms posts covered in the series:
- Adapting to hostel life
- Reasons you can get stuck in one place long than anticipates
- How to cut costs and make money stretch when funds run low
- Learning to deal and cope with language and communication problems
- The backpacker party culture
- What everyday long term and backpacking life is really like
- How to deal with loneliness when it hits
- How the backpacker hostel bubble can turn into a trap
- How long term travelers can lose sight of reality
- How to cope & deal with constant hello’s & goodbyes
Long term budget traveling realisms series:
BEFORE YOU GO
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Sarah · May 6, 2018 at 11:19 am
A series of posts dedicated to long-term travel and what to expect, well you took that up a whole notch. I’m sure a lot of travelers contemplating on being on the road for a long while will learn so much from your posts. How long have you been travelling non-stop for? My longest was only for 5 months, but that took a lot of budgeting and actual will-power to push through it. We need to be as realistic and frugal as possible otherwise, we won’t even last a month if we don;t plan carefully.
foreverroamingtheworld · May 6, 2018 at 11:42 am
Hi Sarah ….the longest.i was away from home was 6 years ….good researching is key for me but not over planning …and yeah hopefully these posts will come in handy for first time long term travelers 😊
Nives · May 6, 2018 at 11:03 am
I hope you get to travel more long-term 🙂 and there is always the right and the wrong ways of traveling and we will take both of them sometimes, but we all learn while we’re alive.
Shreya · May 6, 2018 at 10:36 am
It’s not easy as it sounds or as it’s been told or shown in Instagram or Facebook. The reality maybe little harsh and thanks for sharing your experience with us. More power to you!
Jenn and Ed Coleman · January 21, 2018 at 12:30 am
This was an superbly written post and I could tell it came from your heart. We have always been a step or two removed from long term budget travel. I love how simple life becomes and how freeing that can be. For us, we want to see the world on our terms. We are actively looking for ways to facilitate just that. It turns out, the hardest part of that equation is clearly defining what our terms actually are.
foreverroamingtheworld · January 21, 2018 at 12:40 am
One of the best things for me, is traveling at my own pace, seeing it the way I want and how I want 😀 – I hope you get to travel more long-term and hope you get to define your terms 😀
Rye\ · January 16, 2018 at 5:20 pm
I believe there are right and wrong ways to travel. While these may be more cultural and personal, to travel based on someone else’s itinerary even if it doesn’t suit us is probably a wrong way to travel. I say “probably” because it may feel uncomfortable in the beginning but it may also turn out to be an experience we will forever cherish. But if we travel in a way that is not congruent with who we are, and if such lifestyle burns us out and makes our travels feel purposeless, is that not a wrong way to travel? So, I say, there are right and wrong ways to travel, but it’s our responsibility as travelers to find out what’s right/wrong for us.
Heraa Farooq · November 12, 2017 at 9:16 pm
That’s a very good overview of Long term planning on budget. Not many people are familiar from this side of the story and they all think it’s a piece of cake and very easy thing to do. When planning to live overseas on a small budget you have to overlook so many facilities and desires which seem quiet easy to get at your home place. It’s good post for people who are planning it will give them a good idea how to plan it.
Swati · November 10, 2017 at 10:29 am
That was a very truthful outlook on solo backpacking. As you have said, it has its pros and cons. It is not for everyone and your post can help someone go into it with their eyes open, not with a rosy glass of glamor. Great post, pinning it for future reference too.
Marge · October 21, 2017 at 5:42 am
When the full-time travel bloggers have started to become a thing, I was one of those who wanted to follow in their footsteps. I too wanted to travel long-term. After all, traveling is the only thing that truly makes me happy. But when I got out of job and I didn’t have enough saving, I realized that I couldn’t do it. Sure there are many people like you who could do this for real, but I realized that it’s not for me, and that’s okay. I can still travel whenever I can.
And it’s good that you are painting a realistic picture for people who may want to do this. At least they know it’s not all about being pretty on Instagram the way some influencers make it out to be. It’s important to follow your dreams, but it’s also important to at least be prepared for it.
Promise Chika Maxwell · October 20, 2017 at 1:34 pm
Was good you laid out the things one could expect in a long term backpacking travel. Some real experience you acquired could help other travelers. Also encountering somethings you never expected makes it a beautiful learn!
Sandy N Vyjay · October 18, 2017 at 2:29 pm
This is a very candid post that busts many myths about long term backpacking. More often than not, only the glamourous part of the experiences are shared creating a rosy picture minus warts. But your post places the facts in bare truth. The pros and cons are there for all to see and make their choice.
foreverroamingtheworld · October 18, 2017 at 6:56 pm
Thank you very much, throughout my hole blog even with my country guides I give a candid and honest opinion the good and the bad …ive meet so many travelers over the year who have this picture of roses but when things go wrong they don’t know what to do because they wernt aware of it….i want to show the glamour but also make people aware of the realities too