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One of the reasons I love to travel is because I get the opportunity to learn about other cultures and ways of life. It opens my mind and gives me a better understanding of the world and my place in it.
Part of getting the most out of your overseas travel experience is embracing new experiences.
World Travel 101 – Index
- Part 1 – Planning
- Part 2 – Travel Documents
- Part 3 – Foreign Languages
- Part 4 – Money
- Part 5 – Accommodations
- Part 6 – Transportation
- Part 7 – Packing
- Part 8 – Health & Safety
- Part 9 – Staying Connected
- Part 10 – Cultural Awareness & Respect
How to Get the Most Out of Your 1st International Trip!
1. Remember You’re a Guest
When you travel to a new place it’s like being a guest in someone else’s home. So be polite and respectful.
For example, ask folks for permission before you take their photo.
Also, watch out for cultural blunders! Pointing with your index finger is considered rude in many countries. And in some Asian countries crossing your chopsticks is thought to be a death omen.
Do some research on local customs before you leave for your trip to ensure you don’t offend the local people. Travel guide books are often a good source for this information.
2. Don’t Expect Home Away From Home
Not everyone speaks English (nor should they) and you won’t be able to find a hamburger and French fries wherever you go. In fact, you may not be able to find any of your favorite foods.
So when you travel, be prepared and understand that you may not feel like you’re at home. That’s part of the fun!
3. Try New Things
Get out of your comfort zone! Make some local friends, try new foods, or even experience a local religious ceremony.
Emily and I will never forget walking down the streets of Budapest, and meeting a street artist. He was selling his photography, and we started chatting with him. We ended up taking him out to dinner, and he told us all about life in the city, and how it was better under communism and why.
His story broke some stereotypes I had, and I’ll never forget meeting Tibor and the dinner we shared together!
Emily likes to keep a written journal as a reminder of her experiences when we travel. Some folks prefer to keep a journal of photos on their phone or by posting to sites like Instagram.
On your 1st international trip, remember to be open-minded and respectful towards other cultures. Getting outside your comfort zone by trying new things and meeting new people will ensure you have a fun, and maybe even life-changing travel experience!