If I had a dollar for every time someone heard my travel stories and said “That sounds incredible! I wish I could do that!”, I would be rich and could travel for the rest of my life.
But since that is an unrealistic business plan, instead I always encourage people and tell them “But you can! It’s not impossible!” And in response, I always get one of a handful of the same excuses. Every. Single. Time.
But I’m here to tell you, I’m done with your excuses!
Why Your Excuses Don’t Work
Today, I’m going to rebuttal the most common excuses I’ve heard for people not going to the places they’ve always dreamed of going.
1. “I have school!”
By no means am I advocating dropping out of school, but who cares?? There are ways to travel without abandoning your education. You could do a study abroad. There are incredible programs that are richly challenging and besides that, it looks great on your resume here in the States.
2. “I can’t take the time off work.”
Don’t you have paid vacation time? If you don’t, could you negotiate a week or two off? And if you’re just one of those people who feels that they are quintessential to the functioning of their employer’s company, well, maybe there’s a deeper issue there, one way or the other. Travel could be good for that! They don’t own your soul, after all. You should be able to have a life. And if they won’t let you have a life, do you really want to be working in an environment like that anyway?
3. “Oh, I couldn’t leave the kids/dog/significant other/potted plant.”
You’re coming back aren’t you? Isn’t that what babysitters and relatives are for? And kennels? And guy’s night? Do they own your soul, too? And before you say “Yes, of course they do! I love them!” I’m going to flat out tell you that no, in fact, they don’t. Your soul is yours alone, and every relationship, parental, romantic, business, and even pet-owner, will be better and richer if you take time to grow your soul and be stronger in your own personhood.
4. And my all-time (least) favorite “There’s no way I could afford to travel.”
To which I say BULL. Travel does not have to be obscenely expensive. I could go for hours about how travel can be affordable. Get a miles card to cover flights. Stay in AirBnBs instead of hotels, or if you’re a student or young person, stay in hostels! Hostels provide an awesome way to make new friends who love to travel as much as you do. Money really that tight? Go camping. Strap on a backpack with a tent and sleeping bag and you’ve got your hotel on your back (just make sure you know the camping laws in the country you’re in, and be sure to take every safety precaution). Also, don’t eat fancy restaurant meals for everything! Hostels usually have kitchens, and all countries have grocery stores. That way, when you do go out to eat, you can make it count!
Travel Is Worth It
Think of how many books are written about incredible, transformative travel experiences. Think of how enraptured people are by others’ travel stories, and how we all drool over great travel photos. There’s obviously something valuable in it.
Travel helps you grow as a person. It rejuvenates you where you may have been drained. It boosts your confidence. It gives fresh perspective on life and the world. What aspect of our daily lives wouldn’t benefit from all of that?
Besides, life is short. Do you really want to go out without having done the incredible things you always dreamed of doing? We only get one life. Make it a good one, eh?
If you’re stopping yourself from traveling with a list of excuses (maybe even some of these!), what steps can you take to overcome those obstacles? Even something small that you can do today, like hang a picture of your dream destination in your cubicle! Little things add up to big changes. Tell me about it in the comments, and for more travel tips and stories, subscribe to my email list!