Author: Sean Keener

What is something you've learned from traveling?

Today for the 2015 Indie Travel Challenge we asked a bunch of seasoned travelers to tell us 1 thing they have learned from traveling.   From silly to serious here is what fellow travelers have learned from traveling:

Nov 21 - question

  • “I learned the hard way that, if you are prone to getting carsick yet sometimes travel via chicken bus, sit in the front.” – Jen Miner, The Vacation Gals
  • “Skip your Lonely Planet—talk to bartenders and taxi drivers. Your guidebooks don’t know the best places to go. Bartenders and taxi drivers have their ear to the ground and always know what’s happening around town. Talk to them about where to go or what to see, and you can trust that you’re being given good advice.”   – Jeremy Scott Foster, travelFREAK
  • “Travel has thought me that people are much quicker to open up to you if you show that you’re open to connecting with them. Just smiling at someone can ignite a conversation or turn the most grumpy salesman in a friendly chap.” – Sofie Couwenbergh,  Wonderful Wanderings 
  • “I’ve learned that the level of customer service varies from country to country and city to city. What one is accustomed to back home can be very different (both good and bad) from what you experience when travelling so you just have to go with the flow!” – Mary Chong, The Calculated Traveler
  • Travel has taught me that the scopolamine  will make you feel infinitely worse than your own nausea will. Patch responsibly, my friends.”  – Ashley Hall Smith, My Wanderlusty Life 

motion sick , nausea

  • “Before I started traveling, I wouldn’t even go to a movie or out to lunch by myself. I thought experiences were only valid if they were shared with another person. Travel has taught me that I am enough.” – Lauren Zehara Haas, The Soul of a Journey
  • “Travel has taught me not to depend upon Italian train schedules, especially the last train scheduled for the day. I have had more than one train never show and have been stuck in cities where I had no lodging for the night.” – Sheri Cervo Graciano, Pack the Passports
  • “I’ve learned that if your friendship can survive a trip with someone, you’ll be friends for life!” – Jaclynn Seah, The Occasional Traveller
  • “The greatest thing about traveling had nothing to do with the beaches that I saw, the temples, or even the food. It’s not about rushing around to see the sights. The best part of travel were the people who I met. I loved seeing what we had in common and seeing how we were different. Hearing their stories expanded me as a person, changed me, humbled me, and showed me that no matter how far away we may be from one another that we are all connected.”     – Valen Dawson, This Way to Paradise 
  • “I’ve learned to be very patient. Sometimes the best experiences come from situations that are totally out of your control.” – Arienne Parzei,
  • “Through travel, I have learned how to detach myself from material possessions. I learned how to let things go, and it really helps to see your physical belongings for what they really are: temporary and replaceable. Truly, they are and will never be life’s definition of happiness, success, nor security.” – Aileen Adalid, I Am Aileen
  • “Travel has taught me that cultures around the world are totally different (and wonderfully so!), but people everywhere have the same basic need to connect with one another. With cultural and language barriers, a smile is the best way to connect with others” – Jenna Thomas, Wild Imagining

silly face

  • “Travel has taught me to be flexible with planning and organisation – I’m the kind of person that usually tries to be organised with everything but there’s just no point in places like Myanmar!” – Petra Pearce, The Global Couple
  • Travelling has shown me over and over again that the world is full of good people. We seem to have a tendency to focus on all the negatives, and it’s easy to forget that most people want to help you. It’s like that quote: “There are no strangers here; Only friends you haven’t yet met…..That, and icecream should only ever be purchased by the kilo.” –  Lucinda Joura, Finding Freddie
  • “Travel has taught me how to make a meal out of things you can find in a 7/11. A yogurt, some chips and some sketchy meat and voilà! A balanced meal you have.” – Megan Stetzel, Forks and Footprints
  • “Travel has taught me that beauty has many definitions depending on which part of the world you are in. Regardless of how you think you look, you’re perfect and very often you’ll be told this while traveling in a way that you’ll begin to believe it and accept yourself in a way that can often be hard to do for many people otherwise.” – Natasha Amar, The Boho Chica

squat toilet

  • “Having had traveled around the U.S., I thought I was pretty aware of things. It wasn’t until I began traveling internationally that I realized how ignorant I was — and still am. The world is full of diverse perspectives, & to be able to view life in each of those lenses is a journey through someone’s life. In short, I’ve learned that travel destroys ignorance — what more can you ask for?” – Lindo Korchi,
  • “Travel, specifically living in Rome for a semester, taught me the joy of a slow meal.”  – Megan MacNee, Traveling Nine to Fiver
  • “Travel has taught me how unfair it is being an Australian. You accept 20 hour flights as the norm, you get excited at the thought of seeing Castles because australia has none, you even consider the crazyness of spending winter in Europe just to experience bad weather .” – Mark Wyld, Wyld Family Travel
  • “Travelling the world made me realise that each country has something to teach you. Every culture has something special that you can learn from…Taking onboard a little part of each country you visit is what travel is all about to me.” – Bethany Davis, Flashpacker Family
  •  “Travel has taught me that parenthood is the great equalizer. It doesn’t matter if you are a TV producer in Canada, a waiter in Cuba,a lifeguard in Mexico, or a tour guide in Puerto Rico, you are concerned about what your baby is eating and if they sleep through the night. Make sure to check out when a baby boy should start talking information. About 15%-25% of young children have some kind of communication disorder. Boys tend to develop language skills a little later than girls, but in general, kids may be labeled “late-talking children” if they speak less than 10 words by the age of 18 to 20 months, or fewer than 50 words by 21 to 30 months of age. Also, children don’t need to be able to speak the same language to communicate, they just play.” – Corinne McDermott, Have Baby Will Travel
  • “Travel and being an expat has genuinely been the best history, politics and social anthropology class I ever could have taken. For example- I never would have known as much detailed information about the Korean war, Mao’s cultural revolution in China or Venezuela’s politics if I haven’t lived in those places.” – Joella Jacobs, Paper Crane Stories
  • “Travel has taught me that my girlfriend is capable of pretending to be from every country we’ve been to in the world so far! In India, she was mistaken for Indian, in Vietnam Vietnamese and the same in Thailand and Laos. Unexpectedly though, when we arrived in Peru, everyone assumed she was Peruvian, which caused a lot of confusion when the ‘Peruvian girl’ couldn’t understand them and had to pass them over to the pasty gringo to translate! This has happened in Bolivia, Chile, Brazil, Costa Rica and now here in Colombia. She’d be perfect spy double agent material!” – Jonathan Howe, Two Monkeys Travel Group
  • “When travelling, underwear can be worn 4 times before it requires washing. That’s frontwards, backwards, inside out frontwards, and inside out backwards! So someone told me…” – Anthony Bianco, The Travel Tart


  • “I’ve learnt you can do a whole lot of things you never would have thought possible. Like riding a bicycle across Vietnam on your own, when you’re not even a cyclist at home! Travel pushes you out of your comfort zone and you learn what you can and can’t do, and the things you can do can be so surprising and enlightening!” – Caitlin Gordon, A Girl Abroad
  • “I’ve learnt that I don’t need a bed to sleep. If I can fall asleep in a KTV box with a dozen Chinese drunks singing along to Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On, it’s safe to say I can hack a sofa for a night or two!” – Shing Lin Yoong, The Culture Map