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Old 03-09-2012, 07:54 PM
 
1,371 posts, read 1,811,438 times
Reputation: 1649

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Okay, so, here are some details:

I'm 20.
I have never been abroad.
I am have always wanted to travel. I have used airports by myself.
These past 18 months have been the hardest in my life.

I want to travel and see the world. I feel that seeing the world would give me a broader persepective of my life.

I have money, not 5k or anything like that, but I have 4k and can pick up more hours.

So, questions:

1. Where would you suggest your 20 year old who has never been abroad to go? Keep in mine, I will be alone.
2. What is the maximum amount of time to stay abroad? I'm thinking from 2 months?
3. Maximum amount of money to spend? I am willing to shorten the trip to a month, anything to see world.
4. Any other advice?

I just feel like I'm existing. Breathing. But not living. I'm tired of dreary, mid-west America, and I want to expand my horizons.

ETA: June-August would be the length of said travel.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:05 PM
 
13,166 posts, read 20,787,609 times
Reputation: 35432
I wouldn't have a problem with my 20 yr old traveling alone, as long as the trip was well planned out. I think as far as itineraries go, you should post in the travel forum. There are lots of world travelers there.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:15 PM
 
1,371 posts, read 1,811,438 times
Reputation: 1649
Default First time traveler. Help please.

Okay, so, here are some details:

I'm 20.
I have never been abroad.
I am have always wanted to travel. I have used airports by myself.
These past 18 months have been the hardest in my life.

I want to travel and see the world. I feel that seeing the world would give me a broader persepective of my life.

I have money, not 5k or anything like that, but I have 4k and can pick up more hours.

So, questions:

1. Where would you suggest a 20 year old who has never been abroad to go? Keep in mine, I will be alone.
2. What is the maximum amount of time to stay abroad? I'm thinking from 2 months?
3. Maximum amount of money to spend? I am willing to shorten the trip to a month, anything to see world.
4. Any other advice?

I just feel like I'm existing. Breathing. But not living. I'm tired of dreary, mid-west America, and I want to expand my horizons.

ETA: June-August would be the length of said travel.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:33 PM
 
Location: Australia
8,034 posts, read 2,818,662 times
Reputation: 38544
Speaking as a parent, whether or not you should travel overseas alone depends a lot on your personality. Are you calm, sensible and unflappable? You'll need to be as things will sometimes go wrong (flight delayed, luggage lost, hotel can't find your booking - whatever), and you'll have to deal with it. Are you a picky eater? If so, things could get difficult for you when you sometimes have to eat unfamiliar food, or have to take a stab in the dark on a menu written in a language you don't understand. Do you make friends easily? If so, this is a plus as you'll meet plenty of other young people travelling around, so you won't be on your own for long. Travelling alone is all well and good, but if you're on your own the whole time, it can be a lonely experience.

Speaking as someone who has travelled all over the place, I'd suggest Europe since European countries are close together so you can get a taste of many different cultures without too much difficulty. You can get around easily by bus or by train (and there are discounted passes for people in your age group), and most people (especially those working in hospitality/tourism) have at least a smattering of English if you don't have foreign language skills yourself. However June to August is not the best time to go to Europe - it's crowded in summer and accommodation can be hard to find. Mid April to mid-June would be better.

Choose the city you want to arrive at (Paris, or Rome perhaps) and book a hostel for the first few days. Don't plan out the whole trip - when travelling alone it helps to be flexible. If you've found a friend or two who invite you to go with them to their next destination, it's a shame if you can't go because you're booked in somewhere in the opposite direction!

$4,000 doesn't sound like enough money - certainly not for 2 months. Get googling to find out the air fares to the city you choose, the cost of a Eurail or Eurobus pass, and the cost of hostels. I'm not up to date on the day-to-day costs (food, admissions, entertainment etc), so perhaps ask on the Travel forum here on C-D, or find a more specific message board for people in your age group.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:48 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,251,141 times
Reputation: 36087
Go to a bookstore and pick up a Lonely Planet guide to a country (not in Europe), spend a few nights traveling in your armchair, and see how it feels through the eyes of the people who have been down on the ground there as independent travelers. Spend most of your time reading about what the accommodations and transportation are like.

Your $3,000 (after plane fares, etc.) won't last long in Europe, not even a month. But in some countries like India or Indonesia or Peru, it will be easy to get about 4 months out of it.

There's a learning curve ahead of you, but you will meet a lot of other travelers following the same Lonely Planet guide book that will help you soften some of the blows.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:51 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville/Afghanistan
328 posts, read 574,325 times
Reputation: 276
4k-5k should be more than enough to hang out in SE Asia for a few months. Stay in hostels, take busses or cheap taxis everywhere and eat street food(so good) and you'll have a great time seeing the best beaches in the world in Thailand and Indonesia, tubing in Laos and just hanging out in Cambodia.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:53 PM
 
7 posts, read 5,612 times
Reputation: 25
Have you considered a Study Abroad college course? You may give up a bit of fredom, but for a first-time traveller, you will be in a much safer environment.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:08 PM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,662,372 times
Reputation: 7720
Have you considered the Armed Forces? You can see the world and get paid for it!
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:46 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,251,141 times
Reputation: 36087
Quote:
Originally Posted by stillkit View Post
Have you considered the Armed Forces? You can see the world and get paid for it!
Or the Peace Corps, so you come back with a clear conscience and don't wake up screaming for the rest of your life.
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:06 PM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,662,372 times
Reputation: 7720
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Or the Peace Corps, so you come back with a clear conscience and don't wake up screaming for the rest of your life.
Yep, another good suggestion.
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