Why traveling is overrated

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travel overrated

The Corona crisis has been around for a while now. With borders closed and no chance to travel anywhere, many have discovered the beauty of short-distance travel (funny enough I have actually predicted this in my post back in 2020) to nearby locations. Also, many people have decided to invest in improving their homes to make relaxing possible without going anywhere at all. What has changed? Why do we not want to travel anymore? Is it just the restrictions or do we actually start to see that mass segment travel is overrated?

travel overrated

Travel is expensive

I used to travel 4-5 times per year and didn’t consider it to be much at all. One trip is not that expensive – you have cheap low-cost airlines, affordable Booking.com hotels, and warm ready-to-eat food at the local supermarkets. However, if you add up all the costs, traveling can easily cause a hole in your pocket, even if it’s just as low as 500€ per trip. Not to forget all the extras that come up during the holiday – museum visits, rental cars or public transport, souvenirs, unexpected disasters etc.

I could never save money because all of it sooner or later ended up in my travel budget. Only when the lockdowns kicked in, I realize that it’s possible to reach much higher financial goals if you simply do not travel every couple of months. The hidden cost of traveling frequently added up and slowly drained my budget.

travel overrated

People travel due to peer pressure

One thing that many people don’t realize is that visiting as many countries as you can is often caused by peer pressure rather than our own desire. In the age of technology and social networking, people see their friends posting photos from cool destinations and end up wishing to do the same. The reality of travel is far from nice sunny photos – what looks like a cool beach can in fact be dirty and full of souvenir dealers, the Eiffel Tower (or any other famous landmark) is usually heavily overcrowded and you can easily waste hours simply waiting to get in (or out).

The truth is that most people have everything they need to relax and rest right in their own homes. Professionals over forty have much nicer apartments such as luxury apartments than most hotel rooms. If someone needs a vacation to relax and rest, they should think first about what is wrong with their own home – perhaps there is a need for change.

travel overrated

Travel is a short-term emotion

Traveling is not something you can enjoy years after buying. Spending 1000€ on a nice item (like a bicycle or high-end TV) will bring you joy for months or even years afterward. One week of fun travel, on the other hand, will become a distant memory in a matter of weeks. All you’ll have are nice photos that you will share once on your social media and some souvenirs for your loved ones. By the way – whatever you bring along from your trips will never have the same value to others as it is for you. So a tip would be to bring something a person can eat or drink.

Checklist travel is not a way to see a new country

Most travelers spend their time going through a checklist of must-see and must-do. Visiting some landmarks and sightseeing, going to the same restaurants, seeing the same stuff. This means the same emotions and no true understanding of reality. You can not learn about a country by just filling somebody’s lists.

The best way to learn about the culture of a new place is by making no plans at all – exploring as you go. Try to get lost, eat somewhere new, and just try to see all of it through the eyes of the locals.

travel overrated

Should we stop traveling?

Of course not! But we should think about why we travel – what is the purpose? Traveling should have a deeper meaning. The next time you plan your vacation, ask yourself – will I remember this trip for the rest of my life? Will I learn something truly new and get unique experiences? If the answer is no, perhaps there is a better way to spend your time and money.

The world is full of possibilities and you might be surprised how cool it can be to find a new hobby or meet new people without even leaving the town that you live in.


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