Travel Talk: Sage Advice For Gap Year Travel Anxiety

*This post is contributed by Ellie Jo for Blissful Snapshots. Featured photo from Pexels.

Traveling on your gap year is, without a doubt, one of the best things you can do. However, it can also be an incredibly scary experience. The world can seem a vast place, full of different cultures and attitudes. And it’s no surprise that many young people approach their year of travel with a sense of trepidation - which could, ultimately, prevent them from getting off to the best possible start - or maybe even going at all. 

But don’t  let your fears overcome your desire to see the world. To help, I’ve put together some of the best advice on traveling that I have learned and heard about from many different people from all over the world. Hopefully, it will encourage you to stick with your decision and make your gap year dreams come true. 

The end result

Ask anyone who is about to embark on a new adventure, and they will tell you they are feeling anxious. But ask the vast majority of those who have just returned, and they will say they cannot wait to go again. The chances are, you will feel exactly the same - so get out there, and focus on the end result, not how you are feeling right now. 

The cost

Of course, travel doesn’t come cheap. But, ultimately, cost should not be something that deters you from getting out there and seeing the world. There are cheap flights available to almost every destination in the world, and you will find that living expenses are cheaper in some countries than in others. And in many cases, you will be able to pick up the odd bit of work while on your travels, so even when funds get low there is an opportunity to earn. 

*Photo from Pexels

The cultural differences 

When you are reading up on destination guides and websites, you will often hear about the cultural differences that exist from one place to another. And it can be intimidating. What if you forget about them - will people find you rude? Well, don’t panic. The vast majority of people will find your inability to grasp a particular custom funny, not offensive. And, again, it’s no reason to avoid a trip away - just run with it, and you will get there in the end.

*Photo from Pexels

The fear

There are dangerous places on this planet, of course. But every one of these crime hotspots is signposted, and they are so easy to avoid. And look at it this way - who is more frightened? The person traveling from New York to a remote village in Malaysia? Or the Malay going to New York to stay in the Bronx? You’ll find that people are friendly, welcoming, and warm wherever you are on the planet, and will also be willing to help you out however they can. 

The isolation

Most people will feel a little isolated when away from home for extended periods of time. But that also works in your favor, too, as there will be plenty of others around you going through the exact same thing. If you do experience isolation, be sure to go to the nearest traveler’s lodge or communities that exist all over the planet You will find like-minded others who will help you get back on track. 

Good luck with your trip - and I hope you bring home an incredible experience.

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