Oh this month on BootsnAll is making me so homesick for Asia! India and Hong Kong have long been on my list and I’m positively aching to go back to Japan. The ramen. Sigh. And, if you’re on the fence about long term travel, this week we tackled the excuses people make that keep them from pursuing that dream… and challenged you to stop making them.
Here’s what you may have missed:
Let’s be honest, Japan is not often considered a “budget” destination for travelers. It’s not uncommon to be hit with sticker shock the moment you land. There are, however, ways to mitigate those costs and make Japan a much more affordable place to spend some time. If you’re looking to get creative in controlling your budget in Japan, this article is for you. Have you ever considered spending the night in a karaoke booth??
“Although the primary reason for renting a karaoke booth is to belt out tunes with friends into the early hours, there are other extras to be taken advantage of. Ask at the front desk for nomihodai (see above) and selected drinks will flow freely for an hour at a reasonable set price.
Additionally, all booths receive waiter service and include menus, massive TVs and comfortable sofas lining the walls. It’s also not unheard of for people to spend the night in a booth to save searching for a hotel. However, it is important to note that the larger chains (such as Big Echo) can be seriously pricey, so stay local and ask for a quote first to feel the cost-cutting benefits.”
We’ve all heard the stories about India, from the tongue in cheek jokes that I-N-D-I-A stands for, “I’ll Never Do It Again,” to the gushing yogis who’s lives were changed by a guru in a mountain ashram. India is alluring, to be sure, and it bears preparing for in advance just a little bit.
“It may be a shock the first time you go into a crowded place, get in line to buy something and helplessly watch as someone cuts in front of you to get the clerk’s attention. It may surprise you even more when they say “excuse me”, cut in front of you and do it all over again. When this happens, it’s important to remain calm and collected. Shops and cafeterias in India rarely have queues or any discernable method of keeping order at the register. Instead, customers crowd around the counter, wave and try to make eye contact until the clerk decides who gets to go next.
You will probably have to deal with the chaos in some setting or another, so just remember a few key signals to make the process smoother. First, personal space doesn’t exist in India, so if someone cuts in front of you, it’s because they see space and assume you aren’t trying to get to the counter. Second, once you make it to the counter, keep your cash in your hand so they know you’re ready. Last, don’t hesitate to call out what you want when the clerk looks at you. If you take too long, they’ll move onto someone else and you’ll have to wait longer.”
You’ve been toying with the idea of long term travel for some time now. You weigh the pros and cons, and you know the pros are compelling, and yet, you haven’t yet gotten serious about your planning, set a date, or taken the plunge. Why not? You’re making excuses. Adam takes aim, with both barrels, at the 8 most common excuses people use to keep them from pursuing their dreams. Stop making excuses, today… and get out there.
“It’s okay to admit it. You’re scared to take a long-term, RTW trip. I don’t blame you. It’s a frightening thing to think about. I was extremely worried that I was ruining my life when we ultimately decided to quit our jobs and travel around the world for a year.
“Am I really going to voluntarily quit a good, stable, well paying job to go travel for a year?” I would ask myself in the months leading up to our trip.
The answer was obviously yes, and I knew that, but that didn’t help my anxiety at the time. Of course now I look back and have to laugh at the absurdity of it all. When faced with fear, or a challenging situation, or going against societal norms, it’s natural to be scared. We make excuses to help us deal with our fears. We come up with ways to talk ourselves out of taking risks. I know all about it. Every single traveler who has bucked the norm to travel has faced these fears.”
Hong Kong is another one of those places that budget travelers tend to eschew because the price tags just seem too high. You’ll be glad to know that there are ways to visit Hong Kong and not blow your entire budget for Asia in one long weekend. From lodging to cheap eats, this post will point the way.
“Based on a recent trip to Hong Kong, I’m excited to report that great values do abound in this glitzy metropolis – if you are a careful traveler and consumer. On the flip side, China, which is notoriously famous for its knockoff purses and bootleg videos, is rife with travel rip-offs and false promises, too.
Yes, I learned the hard way. But the good news is that you don’t have to. Consider this list of Hong Kong deals and gimmicks when you plan your trip and you will not fall prey. Instead, you will have a little extra cash to apply to your next adventure.”