Often when you are inspired to travel by any Travel show video or by a model in an exotic location posing for Instagram, you decide to plan your epic trip. But halfway through your research and planning, your energy fades and different bad scenarios seep into your mind. Your mind constantly gives you ideas of why this trip is a bad idea and you need to abort your mission.
If you ever face such a dilemma, where your heart and mind wants different things, go with your heart. I have compiled some of the travel fears that we as a female traveler feel and have found different ways to overcome them. Some might work for you and some won’t. But next time if you have any second thoughts, you can feel at peace about your decision knowing that you are not alone in this and we are hear to help you!
1. The fear of not being able to be there for the family when needed
All in all, I like calculated risks. I love moving to new countries, but I make sure I have a job there. I love visiting exotic places but I make sure I have all the vaccines. So, I can’t say that I have had many fears I had to overcome.
The one thing that has always been a concern from me though is “what if something happens back home, to my family or a close friend?” Over the past 10 years of travelling my answer to that question has become very clear: I drop everything and go back.
There is nothing more important in the world than family, in good times and in bad times. I flew in for their illnesses and their weddings. In order to be able to do that, of course, I needed savings – so I always make sure I have enough money in the bank to pay for a ticket home, no matter where in the word I am.
And everything else will sort itself out. Jobs, school, whatever commitments I had – organizations are led by people. And people will understand. Especially if they know you´re genuinely in trouble and they know you´re loyal to them.
– By Christin from ChristinhasFernweh
2. The fear of going hungry
Last year I was invited to attend a travel forum in an offbeat place in Thailand. The organizers made sure to ask me about my dietary preference and I was quite comfortable thinking they will take care of me as I am a hardcore vegetarian. Fast forward to the actual forum days, and unfortunately, I had to miss a couple of meals because the rice was the only item I could eat and most of the times it had prawns or eggs in them. I had to survive on desserts.
Yes, being a vegetarian especially in South East Asian countries is nothing less than an adventure. I try my level best to strike a conversation with the locals and order fried rice (safest bet) without meat, fish and egg. But they are so used to adding all of these that it becomes a task to make them understand. Though big cities have many vegetarian options and most of the times, Indian restaurants; visiting any offbeat destination surely instills fear of going hungry.
After having visited four such countries, I have learnt to overcome the fear by carrying Indian snacks and dry fruits (even though it means extra kilos in the bag and lugging it around) and surviving on local desserts!
– By Ketki from ExplorewithEcokats
3. The fear of getting stranded on the road
I have a fear deep inside my mind of getting stranded on the road in the middle of nowhere, where there is no soul to be seen for miles or with spotty cell reception.
In such situations, instead of letting panic get hold of you, you need to take certain preventive measures. It would be the best to stay inside the vehicle with the doors and windows locks and then try to call someone or police over the phone providing your (exact) location or any prominent landmark you crossed.
A person stranded alone at night can be vulnerable, so it would not be best idea to leave your vehicle behind to ride with a stranger to seek assistance. Instead, try to avoid driving at night and make a halt in any hotel on your way. If you need to drive at night, make sure to keep all the necessary tools such as Jack or spare tire with yourself.
The most important thing would be to listen to your guts and if something doesn’t seem right then it would be best to get out of that place as soon as possible.
-By Anwesha from Going Places With Anwesha
4. The fear of losing a passport in a foreign land
A traveler’s worst fear is losing his/her passport in a foreign land and it happened with me. While the entire process to getting a new one, the stress of losing it in a foreign country, the expenses related to it are really horrible, the worst pain is – losing the stamps & visas.
For me, a passport is not only a travel document, but it’s also a diary of memories of every trip. Seeing it brought back beautiful memories of the trips I had taken. By stealing my backpack with my passport, the thief also took away my memories of visas and stamps!!! It can happen to anyone!
So here’s a tip – take a scan of all your passport pages and every time you get a new stamp/visa scan that page again. Even if you lose your passport, you have a copy of the memories!!!
-By Bhushavali from My Travelogue
5. The fear of road accidents
My most common fear is the fear of being in a road accident while moving from one city to another and especially when I am traveling to a hilly destination. The inclining narrow lanes with the view of those deep valleys and fog at the heights make the trip to seem too dangerous. I get the fear of the driver losing control both during uphill and downhill routes.
For such road trips, I make sure that we (me and my partner) start our journeys as early as possible and complete it before the sun sets. I also make a point to check the weather conditions.
During our most recent road trip when we were traveling from Jaipur to Udaipur which was an 11 hour journey by road, we had taken a halt for the night at a good resort which had very positive reviews online. For the hilly areas too, we take a halt for the night at a good resort or hotel about which we have researched online. We do not let this fear become a hurdle for us and stop us from doing road trips because things can happen anywhere.
There are risks that we take during many stages of our lives. It’s important to take right precautions, be mindful about the destination you are traveling to and check for any warnings regarding the climatic conditions.
– By Anjali from Chearfultrails
6. The fear of traveling solo
Some years back, there was a time when I could not find a travel companion because our time of travel didn’t match due to different life commitments or due to the places we want to travel. At that point of time, I had two choices i.e. 1. Don’t travel 2. Travel alone. And I have chosen option 2 and decided to travel solo.
The idea of traveling solo was very frightening and nerve-wracking at first. It was way back in 2006 when solo female travelers were not very common in India. Somehow I made up my mind and also got my family’s support though they were worried. I made my first solo trip successfully and it boosted my confidence.
I overcame my fear of solo traveling by taking some basic precautions. I check the reviews of hotels at multiple travel forms, book all hotels in advance, plan an itinerary and leave a copy of it at home, call my family twice a day, don’t go out after dark and follow other common travel precautions. I trust my gut feeling instead of taking risks. To keep myself calm and overcome stress, I meditate every morning for 45 minutes. This helps in maintaining balance in adverse conditions and reduces the anxiety of traveling solo.
I am following these basic precautions while traveling solo and also meditate as much as possible. This is how I travel solo happily, without any fear.
– By Sapna from My Simple Sojourn
7. The fear of lying to parents and then getting caught
Having dealt with many sticky situations over the years while traveling alone, I have become more confident in handling them. But how do I handle my parents who still don’t understand why do I keep traveling and discourage me from leaving home? So sometimes, I lie to them.
If you are an Indian traveler, and especially a girl, you would understand my story. But for others let me say that most of the Indians who travel for longer period never tell at home about where they are going and for how long. As our parents are still adjusting to the new travel trends in India and don’t appreciate why anyone would want to travel for longer than a few days.
Though this gap between children and parents is not common in all families, I cannot tell my parents that I will travel solo in someplace for two months. They will freak out and might completely dismiss my entire trip. Hence I don’t tell them that I am leaving my city or goof up a story about visiting one place and then staying there the entire time, while in reality, I am hopping on and off buses every other day.
And my worst travel fear is that they will catch me red-handed. As I have no other way to overcome this travel fear, I hope that one day my parents and I would understand each other better. For now, you can just tell them what they want to hear over the phone and wish that they never see you in action.
– By Priyanka from On My Canvas
Every one of us has one or another fear related to travelling which either we have overcome to follow our passions or trying to find a way through.
The first step to overcome these fears would be to muster the courage and step out of your comfort zone. Then either apply some of the above tried and tested techniques or find some new ways that work for you instead.
Remember, fears have no real power over you!
Ones you have crossed the threshold, you will find how liberating it feels to get out of the clutches of your fears.
If anyone of the above tips shared by my awesome friends helped you out, do tell us by commenting below!
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