Travel Mindset

Here Are Your New Year’s Resolutions

By Steph | January 3, 2012

I’ve never been big on New Year’s Resolutions. Big, grand gestures that are usually completely abandoned by mid-February. Sure we’d all like to lose weight, exercise more and stop biting our nails but ain’t gonna happen b/c of some magic decree. Still, I can kind of see the point of using the start of the […]

Tourism vs. Voyeurism

By Guest Poster | September 20, 2011

This is a subject I’ve struggled with in the past and would be interested to hear other people’s viewpoints in the comments.  There is something to be said for checking “must see” items off your life list – we all travel to some extent to “see” things when we go places. But what happens when […]

Experiencing the World Through a Female Lens

By Steph | September 11, 2011

The Frugal Traveler, a great column in the NYT, had an interesting article last week focusing on what it’s like to travel as a woman alone. It’s a good article, but the author Seth Kugel, seems amazed by the fact that, yes, women often have a different travel experience than men. That’s funny, because as […]

Is Travel Risky?

By Steph | August 9, 2011

I have a secret: I’m not really a very brave person. At least I don’t think so. If you travel a lot, especially alone, you hear the phrase “you’re so brave” so often the words lose all meaning. It comes from non-travelers mostly, who are under the impression that traveling especially for an extended period […]

What a 74 Year Old Man Can Teach Us About Backpacking

By Steph | July 19, 2011

Contrary to the chaos you might observe at a party hostel on a Saturday night, backpacking isn’t just for the young. I’ve met all kind of people in common rooms around the world: from brave 18-year old solo travelers to cool dudes old enough to be my dad. Or, in the case of Bill, my […]

How Travel Has Made Me a Better American

By Steph | July 5, 2011

Here in the United States we have some weird attitudes towards travel. Along with our crazy work priorities, there seems to be this odd yet persistent notion that there’s something unpatriotic about traveling abroad. Not everyone believes this of course, but more than once I’ve run up against this idea of “if you love your […]

Is the American Dream Holding You Back?

By Steph | May 31, 2011

“Two weeks a year?! That’s IT?” Sigh. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been drawn into this conversation. I’ve had it with Australians, with Germans, with Brits, all staring at me in wide-eyed amazement. They’ve probably just asked me why American’s don’t travel, a common enough question in Asia where I can go […]

Travel is Constant Change

By Steph | May 10, 2011

“I’m a change addict,” a woman at the Sydney YHA told me as she stuffed clothing into her backpack, “I just love the possibility of new things.” When you spend enough time in hostels, among other backpackers, the conversation turns to travel a lot. Where you’ve been, where you’re going, how long you’ve been gone, […]

Is Tourism Good for Cambodia?

By Steph | April 7, 2011

All through my three months in South East Asia, I’ve been wrestling with something I can’t quite define. As I’ve explored Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and now Cambodia, I’ve often felt uncomfortable with the high status that comes from being a white westerner in a land of extreme poverty. I’ve seen people react, in both good […]

Why I Don’t Have a Bucket List

By Steph | February 6, 2011

Have you heard of a bucket list? It’s both the name of some Jack Nicholson movie I’ve never seen, and a term for a list of things you want to do before you die (or you know, kick the bucket). Bucket Lists are really popular in the travel community because people who travel are usually […]

What My Parents Taught Me About Travel

By Guest Poster | December 9, 2010

My parents taught me a great deal about how to travel, so I really like this guest post on how our parents influence our travel style: My parents used to have this jeep. It was an ugly cyan jeep. Twice a year they would cram my brother and I on top of the the luggage […]

China is what Happens When You’re Making Other Plans

By Steph | October 19, 2010

If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you may have noticed that China was not mentioned anywhere in my original itinerary. I was supposed to be headed to New Zealand for the month of October (Sorry Matt). I’d done the research, made connections, and was getting psyched to go sky diving to celebrate my […]