The Un-Rules for Traveling

Monday, December 8, 2014

An image of shot glasses from all over the world.


Recently, my Bloglovin' feed has been full of posts that outline rules for traveling. I've seen everything from, posts about what photos you should and shouldn't take, to what souvenirs you should and shouldn't buy, to posts explaining things that you ABSOLUTELY MUST DO __<insert seemingly cool thing here>__!

These posts are just not for me. Travel should be about being true to yourself and your interests. You should absolutely not have to follow specific rules (other than appropriate behavior) or itineraries (other than those you want to).

Money from around the world


Many of the posts that I've read recently highlight the things that will make you look cool vs. look like a 'lame' tourist. Over the course of my 27 years I've decided that I never have been and never will be 'cool' in the traditional (high school) sense of the word. And you know what, I'm absolutely fine with that. I'm going to continue having a good time doing my own thang.

souvenirs of cooking spices, drinks, and shot glasses


J and I are going to happily continue collecting our shot glasses from each place we visit- no matter how many times I read that souvenirs like that are tacky. I'm going to keep saving coins for myself, my cousin, and my best friend. I'm going to keep buying spices, weird foods, and alcohols because I actually do cook with them and enjoy them when I get home. Travel expands my tastes, my knowledge, and who I am. Why should I hold back?

I'm going to keep traveling in my own way. I'd like to encourage you all to do the same! Let's forget what's cool and what isn't and just be happy being ourselves.

What is one 'uncool' thing that you do or collect when you travel?

36 comments:

  1. I love that you said that!!! I am so tired of people telling me how to be cool, um who ever said that was my priority? While you're worrying about how cool you are, I'm out there having an awesome time not worrying what everyone else thinks of me! I love to collect little (for lack of a better term) figures to put on my desk or bookshelf when I get home. Every time I look at them I smile and remember the happy experiences I've had. I also love to collect art work, postcards, magnets and mugs. Practical everyday things that I'll use when I get home that are also full of fond memories.

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad that you feel the same. I also love to collect art and other things that will remind me of my travels when I look around my apartment. It makes everything more fun!

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  2. Yes! Agreed! thank you for this! x

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  3. There are so many blogs out there that make me feel like I need to travel in style, it's nice to see someone write about just doing what you want! There such a difference between traveling in style (like trying to wear fancy shoes around London) and being practical (breaking down and just wearing my sneakers so my feet wouldn't kill me!).

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    1. I tried to wear 'cool' shoes on a trip recently and it just turned out bad. Walking all day just made my feet kill. I've since decided that my comfortable but perhaps not as nice looking shoes are the shoes to travel with! Sneakers all the way!

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  4. I love this!!! I guess pictures are just my souvenirs-- It is too hard for me to keep track of other stuff! I love your money collection!
    Melanie @ meandmr.com

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    1. Photographs are the best souvenirs! I love to print them and hang them everywhere. Thank you!

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  5. I could not agree more! Life is too short to worry about looking 'cool' while travelling - or while doing anything, really.

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    1. This is such a great attitude! I know that I'm trying to follow this more outside of travel as well.

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  6. I say travel is personal and you should do it however you please! We collect random things....usually free things haha! Like a rock from Red Beach in Greece or a piece of stone from the Cliffs of Dover....kind of a theme here :) Keep getting those shot glasses girl!

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    1. I love your rock collections! What wasn't pictured in the photographs above is a huge pile of shells and sea glass I've collected from beach trips.

      Also, Greece. I just need to go there ASAP.

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  7. Very true. That is the good thing about traveling, you do what you want to do, explore what you want to explore, buy what you want to buy, and be who you want to be. I can't lie though, I do enjoy reading all the rules that bloggers put out there. It is entertaining and fun. www.eatallovertheworld.weebly.com

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    1. They are entertaining but I hope people don't feel as though the rules need to be followed! I also like that while traveling you are anonymous so you really can experience what you'd like.

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  8. Yes, yes, yes! I keep seeing these posts and it makes me crazy! Do what you want! I once had someone tell me they had lived in New York for years and never seen the Statue of Liberty because that's "touristy" and they are a "traveler". I looked at them like they were insane and said well I'm a "human" that wants to see the Eiffel Tower if I go to Paris, so sue me! (And I even wanted to buy one of those tacky, cheap Eiffel Tower replicas the guys sell for a few Euros at it! I know, how lame!!)

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    1. What never seen the Statue of Liberty because it is too touristy! These locations are popular for a reason! I'm going to be wearing my I Heart Paris shirt to the Eiffel Tower!

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  9. You do you! I think travel's only worth it if you're enjoying it, not worrying about superfluous stuff. Although I say this as - obviously - someone who will never be uncool ;)

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    1. So true! I love just going with the flow when traveling.

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    1. Thanks!! I can so tell you feel that way by your blog!

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  11. Couldn't agree more!
    You do you, girl!

    http://korinsusanne.blogspot.no

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  12. I love being a tourist! But I like being the good kind of tourist - I do think there is a bad kind, the kind that stops straight into people's path to take photos, that are an annoyance to people, etc. I have lived in 3 very touristy places and I know the bad kind of tourist and wish to avoid being that. I like to be the kind of tourist who enjoy herself and wants to just get the feel for a city, even if that means going to touristy places, etc. But I don't want to be in people's way!

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    1. Yes, it is important to be respectful and think about other people when you travel as well! Don't forget common courtesy.

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  13. Great post! Totally agree with you. Beeing cool is so overrated!

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    1. Thank you! I'm really glad that you liked it :)

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  14. I agree. The worst for me is people telling you about the mus do places. Come on, there is no must do and go place in the world. Just do and go wherever you want. I collect clothes from my travels. I love having stuff from other places than h&m. Unique stuff and even though it wont last my whole life, its something i can use in my every day life.

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    1. Right, everyone has different things that are a must do for them. I also sometimes collect clothes or accessories because they are unique, beautiful, and practical.

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  15. Thank you for this lovely post, I also noticed the overwhelmingly instructional posts on how to be cool while traveling. And I was relieved to admit that I will continue being my uncool self, buy the occasional "lame" souvenirs, save some coins and send a "tacky" postcard to my mum from the places I visit because that is our tradition.
    Worrying about being cool is not that cool in my books, I'd much rather just enjoy myself.

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    1. You're welcome! I'm really glad you also will continue doing what you love to do and what is a part of your tradition. I haven't sent a postcard in a while - I really should!

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  16. Yes I recently read on a very popular travel blog a list of what not to buy. And I disagree! Buy whatever you want! Sheesh! Buy what makes you happy. DO what makes you happy! It's your money and your trip! No one can tell you how to be happy!!!

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    1. Julie - I think we read the exact same blog and that post just made me a bit cranky. I absolutely agree with you :)

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  17. You're so right! I will gladly buy what I want and visit what I want, that's how travel should be. Travel is expensive and you owe it to yourself to soak in every experience (and purchase) you want.

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    1. Exactly! Traveling should be what you want it to be.

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