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Old 07-27-2010, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Texas
209 posts, read 493,754 times
Reputation: 139

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Quote:
Originally Posted by burgler09 View Post
I think passport stamps and visas are actually kind of cool to look at haha.
I do, too. I like to see different countries' shapes and colors and methods of stamping. Sometimes, I flip through my passport and reminisce about holidays I've taken or places I've been when I see the stamp.

The downside is that those stamps and shiny, pretty visas quickly fill your passport up. Then you have to go get extra pages put in it.

Passport stamps do seem to be a relic of the past, as one poster mentioned, given that our comings and goings seem to be all recorded on data bases by immigration officers anyway.

Scott
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Old 07-27-2010, 07:38 PM
 
Location: Tucson/Nogales
17,461 posts, read 21,304,257 times
Reputation: 24315
I like the passport stamping, because, oftentimes, I'll forget just when I traveled to a particular country, and it gives me a quick reminder of when I was there.
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Old 07-27-2010, 10:21 PM
 
1 posts, read 990 times
Reputation: 10
I'm an American who's been to 15 countries. But most of these were visited either on the way to, or whilst living in, Taiwan. If you want to be within range of other countries for travel, both price- and distance-wise, best move out of North America.

If I just want a quick, relaxing, shallow-ish vacation experience like a beach, a mountain hike, a quaint little village, or a big cosmopolitan city, why fly out of the US? I'm from the Northeast, and all of these things are a cheap and doable drive away.

I can only justify spending the time and money to get overseas if it's for a deep cultural immersion, in which case I'm MOVING there temporarily. Honestly, I could see myself uprooting my family in the future, if the government of Kerblakistan is willing to give me a work visa and a license to practice medicine. I think if every American spent a year or two overseas, preferably as a child, America would be a better country.

Many people overestimate how rich Americans are. For the average American, a plane ticket overseas could easily cost several weeks' salary. It took me 9 months of scrimping and saving before I had enough for my one way train trip across Eurasia to get to Taiwan.
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Old 07-27-2010, 10:31 PM
 
Location: San Diego
5,027 posts, read 13,437,341 times
Reputation: 4849
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyDoorsAreOpen View Post

If I just want a quick, relaxing, shallow-ish vacation experience like a beach, a mountain hike, a quaint little village, or a big cosmopolitan city, why fly out of the US? I'm from the Northeast, and all of these things are a cheap and doable drive away.

I think if every American spent a year or two overseas, preferably as a child, America would be a better country.
I wasn't born in the US. I grew up in Europe and spent my childhood traveling the continent. My mom instilled a sense of travel in me from early on and I go back to visit family all the time and will continue to do so. Let's face it, the beaches of the US are nothing compared to Thailand, some of the Caribbean islands, Fiji, etc. Why limit yourself to just traveling within your own country?

I've seen almost all of the major cities in the US (in 48 states) and truly have no desire to go back to most of them. I'd much rather see foreign places that I've never been to. I was born a traveler and will travel until I am no longer physically capable of doing so. We all have different travel styles and the choice of where we go. That's the beauty of living in the US. Personally, I best get along with those that are globe trotters and have seen a vast majority of what this small world has to offer. They truly grasp the concept of culture and humanity and see how many others around the world are living.
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Old 07-27-2010, 10:37 PM
 
Location: Tucson/Nogales
17,461 posts, read 21,304,257 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyDoorsAreOpen View Post
I think if every American spent a year or two overseas, preferably as a child, America would be a better country.
No disagreement there. Particularly when it comes to lodgings. I got terribly spoiled in many parts of Latin America with their hotels/motels with their generous balconies and rooftop decks, even at the low-cost lodgings.

These new cookie-cutter motels/hotels they're creating today with their inner hallways would never fly very well in Latin America. Not only that, in Latin America they're all built out of concrete, no sound of squeaky floorboards upstairs, and which make them safer as well.

Those nicely peopled, lively town plazas of Latin America, oh how I wish we had them here. A tragedy for this country that the Spanish didn't successfully invade this country, rather than the British, as we'd have them in all of our cities to this day, small town and big city alike.
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Old 07-28-2010, 03:18 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,956,094 times
Reputation: 13245
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAK802 View Post
Let's face it, the beaches of the US are nothing compared to Thailand, some of the Caribbean islands, Fiji, etc.
You must not have been to pristine northwest Florida yet--nor any of the Sea Islands on the Atlantic side. Several places are state parks, some of the islands are as well, and there are a few special places only reachable by boat. You can walk and walk on sugar white sand and not see another soul.
California is a beautiful state but IMHO SoCal beaches leave much to be desired, and the Pacific there is freezing.
Quote:
I've seen almost all of the major cities in the US (in 48 states) and truly have no desire to go back to most of them. I'd much rather see foreign places that I've never been to.
I know what you mean. I haven't even been to all 50 states yet myself, though I've seen most. I've done several cross-country drives.
Our strategy had been that while we were young and healthy we would travel *outside* the US as much as possible, then spend more time "at home" as we got older.
This plan was great until one of our kids decided to move overseas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by houstonreadhead View Post

The downside is that those stamps and shiny, pretty visas quickly fill your passport up. Then you have to go get extra pages put in it.
On top of that, the pages are no longer free. (http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/get_outta_here/2010/07/post-4.html - broken link)

Quote:
If I just want a quick, relaxing, shallow-ish vacation experience like a beach, a mountain hike, a quaint little village, or a big cosmopolitan city, why fly out of the US? I'm from the Northeast, and all of these things are a cheap and doable drive away.
MyDoorsAreOpen, I can see your point, and agree with you to an extent. Location matters, though. I can't speak for other travelers, but when we lived in Colorado, it seemed as though no matter where we went, it was gonna cost us a chunk of change, so often (except for one trip to Hawaii) we chose a destination out of the country. We had a really good thing going in the 90's and later '00's when airfares were so cheap.
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Old 07-28-2010, 07:24 AM
 
Location: Texas
209 posts, read 493,754 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueWillowPlate View Post
On top of that, the pages are no longer free. (http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/get_outta_here/2010/07/post-4.html - broken link)
The article says it'll cost $82 to mail in your passport to get additional pages added. I wonder if it'll remain free if you actually go to a US embassy or consulate and have the consular officers add them.

Going from free to $82 is a huge increase. Not that you have a choice.

Scott
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:30 AM
 
8,266 posts, read 10,726,968 times
Reputation: 4774
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Because one's ignorance should not be the thing he's most proud of. Americans are abysmally ignorant about the rest of the world, and seem to wallow in their ignorance. Americans ... (blah blah blah) ... Among those of us who possess the quality of curiosity, that is why we travel.
Dude, what the hell happened to you as a child that created such a pompous blowhard?

Lack of world travel certainly doesn't equate to ignorance, nor does your self-describes "quality of curiosity" make you any less ignorant. I could just as easily take the position that anyone who would be so naive as to lump an extremely large, diverse, populous nation under any personality trait demonstrates great ignorance.

To each his/her own I say. Some people enjoy travel and can't understand how others cannot, and some people can't understand why the time and effort when so much to enjoy at home. I'm sure not to judge as there is no right and wrong.
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:32 AM
 
8,266 posts, read 10,726,968 times
Reputation: 4774
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAK802 View Post
And I've seen 48 of the 50 states, all in the last 3 years. I'm only in my 20s, so I don't consider that a huge accomplishment for myself personally since it was easily done in such a short time. What else is there? An entire world filled with amazing things.
I love your attitude!
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:36 AM
 
8,266 posts, read 10,726,968 times
Reputation: 4774
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAK802 View Post
Let's face it, the beaches of the US are nothing compared to Thailand, some of the Caribbean islands, Fiji, etc. Why limit yourself to just traveling within your own country?
It depends what you want in a beach. There are areas of central California that have beach characteristics you'll not find in Thailand, and vice versa, I don't think either is necessarily better or worse as an absolute. Hawaii and Florida also both have beautiful beaches with their own unique characteristics.
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