My Travel Dreams

The idea of “travel” often becomes polluted with the ideas of flashiness, pride, and grand living. Each vacation a new opportunity to show off how great one’s life is on social media. However, pairing the term with “vacation” is a rookie mistake. 

Traveling is so much more than eating good food, spending money, and sightseeing. 

  • If Covid19 has taught me anything, it’s that traveling is a privilege. It’s a journey. It’s a destination. And above all, it’s a learning experience that should never be taken for granted.

Because it absolutely sucks when you’re deprived of it. 

travel dreams

So here are 6 Travel Dreams that’ll allow you to really appreciate the magic of the journey.

Travel Dreams for the woke traveler

1. Learn a new culture

Remembering that each trip to a new city, state, or country is always accompanied with a bit of culture shock will allow you to embrace those differences the second you get there. Traveling to learn about the customs, traditions, music, food, values, and beliefs of a foreign culture means that your whole trip will be exciting. 

It’ll be enlightening and it’ll be eye-opening. And it’s great to witness first-hand that just because certain things are “all you’ve ever known” doesn’t mean that’s all there actually is. 

There are so many different facets of the world worth acquainting yourself with. And making friends around the world will prove to you and your travel buddies that we’re really not all that different. 

travel dreams

Thanks to Pingster, a geo mapping social network, you can still experience different cultures in real time without ever leaving your home. And in the midst of a pandemic, virtual traveling is your safest bet for learning about new cultures. Check out some of the local travels on Pingster here and get inspired for your next trip.

2. Gain a new perspective on life

Travel with the goal of expanding your mind and opening yourself up to new lifestyles. Though traveling domestically may not be but so much different from your own city or state, traveling internationally basically guarantees the introduction to a new way of living. 

Sometimes you have to witness the way foreigners treat life and the things they care about to adjust your own way of thinking. Oftentimes, you’ll realize there are certain things you take for granted and other things you’re blissfully ignorant about. 

And coming from a “first-world” country resident, there’s much to be learned from the way citizens of developing countries handle things we’ve been taught are unbearable. Because more times than not, these people will prove to you that they actually are. It just takes a strong mindset and the willingness to accept that something isn’t going to be easy but it’s got to get done.  

3. To put your problems into perspective

There’s nothing like boarding a plane, taking off, and instantly realizing just how small I really am. The world is huge and despite how things may seem, it’s not going to end over your problems.

Yes, you may have lost your job. Maybe you didn’t get accepted into the university you wanted. You maybe didn’t go to the concert you’d been dreaming of for years. But the earth is going to keep spinning. 

travel dreams
  • And visiting another country is the perfect opportunity to really assess how big your problems even are. Did you get forced into a childhood marriage? Do you have to walk 5 miles to get clean water? Are you a victim of human trafficking? And are you fortunate enough to know that there are systems in place to help you if you ever severely fell down on your luck?

  • There are luxuries that you and I enjoy everyday that aren’t offered to everyone around the globe. Privileges that we’ve both probably taken for granted. Seriously. Could you even imagine going a day without the internet?

  • Though the number is slowly decreasing, a 2016 study reported that 4 billion people, mostly in developing countries, still don’t have access to the internet. And in some countries, government officials actually forbid or severely restrict its use.

  • The Internet isn’t the most important thing in the world, but reflecting on that report at least proves that “problems” are weighed on very different scales globally.

4. To make a positive impact on the life of a foreigner

Can you imagine how good it’ll feel to know that your trip didn’t only benefit yourself? Next time you plan a trip, plan it with the intention of engaging in positive interactions with your residents of your destination city. 

It can be as simple as paying for someone’s groceries or as big as volunteering at a local facility. Traveling to better the lives of those you cross paths with is a great goal to have.

It’s a mission that can be achieved at any point in your trip and it’ll allow you to go home feeling accomplished.

travel dreams

And though not for every case, you may not ever find out the truth of a situation until you venture out and start listening to international voices. So if there’s absolutely any issue you can think about that involves another country or state, even if you’re not going to that country or state, get the perspective of the residents of the city you are visiting. 

5. To get a new viewpoint on global issues

  • Let’s be real– a lot of the news you get from in-state or in-country resources is often biased. They tell you what to believe about crises around the world, give you a pretty solid suggestion on how to respond, and that’s that.

  • You don’t hear from the people personally affected. You don’t hear from the countries your own country either doesn’t care about or isn’t at peace with. And that can make for a very one-sided account of the details.

  • Oftentimes, traveling reveals that your own country isn’t either as uninvolved or as forthcoming with assistance as you were originally led to believe.  Worse still, some news outlets even profit off of biased reports.

6. To see things in first-person

Forget the media and social media sources. As mentioned earlier, media is often biased (even subconsciously.) They only show you what they want you to see.

If they want you to think that some country offers an impoverished, starving, low quality way of living, that’s all they’ll ever show you. And more or less, all of us have been influenced by stereotypes. 

  • To access them, all you have to ask yourself is “what do I think French residents are like?” “What do I think Nigerian residents are like?” “What do I think Iranian residents are like?”

  • I bet you have plenty of assumptions of foreign people based solely on resources produced by your home country. If you’ve never actually visited the country, how will you ever know if what you think you know is true.

  • You won’t. Quite frankly, you can see enough images to fill a lifetime but seeing isn’t believing. You have to experience the culture, people, and geography first-hand to ever form an educated opinion on a foreign country.

  • You don’t hear from the people personally affected. And you don’t hear from the countries your own country either doesn’t care about or isn’t at peace with. And that can make for a very one-sided account of the details.

  • Oftentimes, traveling reveals that your own country isn’t either as uninvolved or as forthcoming with assistance as you were originally led to believe.  More so the news outlets that profit off of biased reports. I don’t say that to dim your nationalism, just to remind you to stay alert to fake news.

Final Thoughts

Figuring out how to prepare yourself in the meantime for future travels is as big a task as actually traveling. Pingster is my favorite tool for discovering new places to travel both locally and nationally.

I find new photos posted by other users on there daily that I frequently save using the app’s virtual scrapbook feature. If I want to travel 20 miles away, I’m able to set the app’s radius limit, and only view photos taken within that distance.

Same for if I’d like to travel 200 miles away. My photo album is constantly growing and I know that whenever I do travel, I’ll have a handy collection of local eateries, parks, and entertainment.

If that sounds like something you’d be interested in, then sign up here for Pingster.

Pingster Username: cierrasmith
Pingster Display Name: Cultured Simplicity
cierra smith
travel dreams

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