3 Things You Don’t Always Have To Do When Travelling

Iam of over-planning almost all of my past vacations – cramming up way too many touristy activities into one tiresome blur. After spending weeks gathering all the information I could get from TripAdvisor and random blogs, every little detail of how I would want the trip to go would be compiled into an efficiently prepared and packed itinerary.

I realised later on (and not too late) that not only was I completely draining the energy out of my travel companions every single time, I was taking the fun out of the holiday by turning it into a task.

Recently, I came across this article by Artelounge that listed all the common things travellers think they have to do to make their trips worthwhile, that aren’t actually that important; the essential thing actually being to use that time to relax and reconnect, either with loved ones or yourself.

Overplanning your trip with rigid itineraries can turn your whole vacation into a task

Here are some of the points the article makes:

1. (Dont) Visit Every Museum/Attraction Because It’s on TripAdvisor

Everyone has different interests. Just because an attraction is listed top on TripAdvisor doesn’t mean you’ll definitely enjoy it. Last year, I visited the Vasa Museum in Stockholm because it is the top attraction on TripAdvisor so I felt like I had to visit it. Within 30 minutes, my friend was begging me to stop pretending that I’m enjoying myself and to leave. I tried staying, but I wasn’t enjoying it. While the history and all are great and I’m sure many people would enjoy the museum, it just wasn’t my cup of tea. I ended up feeling worse because I had to spend that money to visit the museum and not enjoy it.

Since then, I’ve sworn off feeling bad for not visiting a certain place while travelling (knowing that I have no interest) just because somebody recommended it. Don’t go to a place because somebody said so. Ask yourself what you like to see and do whatever you want. Just because you did not visit all the “top attractions” stated on a certain website doesn’t mean that you never explored or been to that city.

How often do you actually use those random souvenirs you’ve received from someone? (Pic credit: Pixabay)

2. (Don’t) Eat/Try Everything

I always get recommendations to “try” things when I’m heading on a trip. I’m sure you’ve encountered this too. There will always be people who tell you stuff like “Oh you must try this and that. Don’t scrimp on that. You definitely have to”. Recommendations are good when you don’t have any clue or would sincerely like some suggestions, but nothing is a “must”.

No matter what anyone says, I am not going to try eating fried silkworms or scorpions just because Bangkok has it. I know that some cultures eat rabbit meat, but I’m uncomfortable with that and would not like to try it, so give me a break. Damn right I have fears about these slightly more “outrageous” food and I would like to not be pressurised into trying them. I think I am entitled to think that way, considering the fact that it is me who went on that trip and my choice.

You, too. Don’t be influenced into eating or trying anything that you’re uncomfortable with. It’s your trip, not anyone else’s. If you’re adventurous and want to try, sure. But don’t fall into the trap of having to eat or try anything and then end up feeling worse or sick about it just because the “they” say you have to. Seriously, who are “they”? Do “they” matter? Probably not.

3. (Don’t) Buy Souvenirs for Everyone you Know

I used to buy a ton of those little nothings that nobody uses. I give them to people who never uses them or even remembers them. In fact, a portion of my expenses always go to these nothings. I mean, how often do you actually use those souvenirs you’ve gotten from a friend from their short 3-day trip to Bali?

Not that these souvenirs are completely useless. Perhaps, you could buy it specifically for someone who collects them. Although, I personally feel that one should collect souvenirs for themselves as a way of collecting a piece of the particular city or country that they’ve stepped foot in, doesn’t that make more sense?

Anyway, I stopped falling into that whole “oh you’re travelling? Remember to buy me a souvenir.” thing. No, I will not. You probably never use these “souvenirs” anyway, and you don’t really need (or want them for that matter). And I don’t owe you anything just because I went travelling.

So stop feeling bad about not buying useless nothings for people who will not use it. That is one way that will help you save more money for your next trip instead!


Source: 10Artelounge.co

Photo credit: Pixabay



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As a homebody, Maggie likes spending her week-nights and weekends curled up on the couch with her furbabies, catching up on her favourite TV shows, all while sipping on a nice warm cup of green tea.