5 Things I DON’T Miss About Travel

At a time of a pandemic sweeping across the globe, we all miss travel.

Oh, the freedom we had to just get on a plane or train and arrive at a new destination feels like a fairytale now.

5 Things I DON’T Miss About Travel

At a time of a pandemic sweeping across the globe, we all miss travel.

Oh, the freedom we had to just get on a plane or train and arrive at a new destination feels like a fairytale now.

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

We may earn affiliate commissions from websites we link to, at no cost to you. Click here for details.

things i don't miss about travel

Discovering new culture, different food, scenery and people was bliss. We all miss it. But as they say, the grass is always greener.

So while there are a hundred things I do miss about travel, I must admit that there is a small list of things I don’t miss about travel.

5 Things I DON’T miss about travel:

1. Getting scammed

I’m pretty sure I’m not the only person who hates getting scammed. Nor do I crave those feelings of being ripped off or shaken down to pay ridiculous bribes.

I don’t miss those days of sketchy border crossings in West Africa (dealing with those corrupt officials at the Gambia border) or the persistent attempts to trick me into handing over too many Chinese yuan to Chinese taxi drivers in China.

Besides, those guys never won with me. I was always one step ahead of their game. 

Above all, the things I don’t miss about travel are the small percentage of people with bad intentions.

However, I’ve always said that most people I meet around the world are good. I still firmly believe this. 

RELATED POST – How to Avoid Common Tourist Scams in China

Things I DON'T miss about travel scams in china
Things I DON’T miss about travel – A sign in our Beijing Hotel

2. Eating bad food 

There is nothing I hate more in life than eating bad food. It’s my pet peeve. It takes me several hours to get over a bad food experience. I know it’s kind of embarrassing to admit it. But it’s true.

My hatred of eating bad food doesn’t only apply when I travel abroad. It 100% applies when I’m at home in Australia too.

However, the worst food experiences seem to happen when I travel internationally.

I mean, you arrive in Italy expecting to have the best pizza or pasta of your life. (by the way, the top 5 pizza places in Florence are here).

And then… oh no, you order something that is just mediocre! The disappointment!

But there is also another type of bad food. I’m not talking about poorly cooked food, bland flavours, or the overpriced kind. I mean, that’s not ideal either.

However, I’m talking about the kind of food that makes you woefully ill. 

things i don't miss about travel - bad food
Things I DON’T miss about travel – Eating bad food

The kind that stops you dead in your tracks. You begin to sweat profusely and heat waves sweep rapidly over your body. Then, the panic sets in. 

Most times, you have no idea where the nearest public toilet or shrub is (in some cases) to get impending toxins out of your body immediately! 

Getting ill from bad food sucks!

I don’t miss the times I’ve endured intense stomach cramps. That gut feeling never ends well, it has to come out.

And when it does it ALWAYS happens when you’re miles away from your accommodation. It’s highly inconvenient if you need to change your shirt or perhaps get a fresh pair of underwear…or both. 

I’ll give you an example of why eating bad food is one of the things I don’t miss about travel.

The bad grilled fish in Laos

The culprit on this particular evening was a whole grilled fish. We were at the night market in Laos. I retraced my steps to pinpoint what I ate earlier to provoke the devil trying to bash its way out of my body (at least that’s what it felt like). 

I do remember questioning that grilled fish at the time. It was hot on the outside, but it wasn’t after a few mouthfuls. I saw that it was cooked through but was stone-cold in the middle.

The flesh was tough, too.

Note to self: Always follow your instinct. It is rarely wrong

I didn’t trust my instinct. Stopping right then and there would have been the smart thing to do.

I guess the fish had likely been cooked a few days ago. But it probably hadn’t been sold for the past few nights. A good chance it wasn’t refrigerated over that time, too. Somehow, the fish managed to make it back onto the BBQ every night that week, with the hope that some foreigner (yours truly) is super hungry.

Lesson learned.

3. The battle of the trolleys at the baggage carousel

I have no control over it. My eyes roll to the back of my head as if on cue. It happens every time I clear customs and make my way to the baggage carousel.

I almost need to psych myself up for it, similar to how a boxer bounces around before entering the ring before a match. 

Here it comes, my chest tightens as I attempt to approach the carousel. I try to find any line of sight to get eyes on the bags being spun around on the conveyor belt. 

It’s way too hard

This is why.

It always feels like every man and his dog is in this hall trying to collect their bags and it reminds me of feeding hour at the zoo. (clearly, I’m exaggerating here as no dogs are walking around in the baggage hall), but there might as well be.

It’s madness.

things i don't miss about travel
Things I DON’T miss about travel – Trying to collect bags upon arrival at the airport

Bring on the baggage carousel

Every time I approach the baggage carousel, it feels as though I’ve just entered a circus tent and the main act is on.

People jump up and down as they wrestle suitcases the size of my fridge at home (don’t even get me started about enormous suitcases, that rant is for another time). 

Women use anything in their path. It appears that their aim is to create a defence wall. They usually park the trolley up sideways to obstruct anybody who thinks of approaching the carousel.

I’ve seen prams locked in place, children piled high on bags, and even a second trolley being used. Anything to form a barricade around those few metres of the conveyor belt. 

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This will never change

This behaviour in airports is one thing that I don’t miss about travel. However, it’s one I’ve accepted that probably won’t change. Therefore, I’ve changed the way I travel to avoid it.

I now travel the world with a small carry-on 40L backpack. I rarely have any baggage to check-in, rather choosing to take it on board with me. Now I don’t need to spend any time at the baggage carousel. Problem solved.

4. Instagram Vs Reality

The massive growth of social media, particularly Instagram has had a large impact on the way we all travel today. Has this been a positive thing or not? You be the judge. However, whether we like to accept it or not, travel is different now.

I miss how it was back in the good old days when we weren’t so connected. I like the element of surprise, the spontaneity of not knowing what a place is like until I see it with my own eyes.

Times are different now

Nowadays, using our iPhones, we can pull up photos of spectacular cities and places around the world that look picture-perfect within seconds.

You hit the book button on the hotel that looks too good to be true and start making plans to visit all those hidden gems and beautiful spots you’ve seen on Facebook and Instagram. 

things i don't miss about travel is the crazy instagram spots
Things I DON’T miss about travel – Instagram has ruined some places for good

Here is the problem

Upon arrival, the hotel you booked online isn’t at all like those photos you saw online. The room somehow seems a lot smaller than the picture online. Hmmm…

Lastly, when you get out into the city to explore attractions and highlights, you realise it’s going to take much longer to get to than you anticipated.

One thing I don’t miss about travel is seeing a queue of people at an iconic photo stop. Have you seen the line for the Louvre before the pandemic? Insane.

A photo posted so many times on Instagram is now the one that everyone must have

Nowadays, people will go to great lengths to capture the perfect pic. Some have even lost their lives trying to snap the ultimate selfie.

People spend much longer taking THE perfect photo now. They don’t just take one photo these days; they’ll take up to one hundred photos, just in case. 

I can’t do it. I won’t do it.

I’m not one of those travellers who will get in a queue of people to snap a picture. 

Sometimes, once you get to said iconic spot, it is puzzling because the water isn’t that turquoise blue that every photo shows, and some random person is trying to charge you a small fee for wanting to take a photo there. Of course, nobody said anything about that part in the Instagram posts.

I’m also not one of those travellers who will hike to the top of a mountain, change into a flowing red dress, apply makeup, and pose on a rock. 

Mona Lisa and the crowds at Louvre - everyone hates over tourism
Things I DON’T miss about travel – Overtourism. I am over it.

Overtourism

This is another thing I don’t miss about travel. Social media has contributed to turning some beautiful destinations into absolute chaos. Venice, Dubrovnik, and Barcelona are just a few destinations that come to mind.

These cities suffered heavily from over tourism before the pandemic. One reason was that multiple cruise ships docked here daily. Ships spew up to 10,000 people onto the streets for only a few hours. 

Cruise ship passengers don’t spend much money in port

Reports indicate that most cruise ship passengers worldwide spend less than $10 when they dock at a new port. In addition, the strain of accommodating that many people at one time is challenging.

Streets get clogged up with thousands of people shuffling around aimlessly, looking for a magnet or tacky souvenirs.

In addition, they’re using public toilets, of which there are never enough. These are problems that affect the locals who reside in these cities. It will be interesting to see how this changes in the future.

What are your thoughts on this?

Interested in reading a little further about this? Check out this post – Is Instagram really to Blame for Overtourism?

While we’re on the topic of social media. Would you like to follow an Instagram account that shows you nothing but the real deal?

5. Applying for Visas

If you own an Australian, American or European passport, you probably don’t need to deal with this too often. Unless you are going to Russia or China.

However, on my journey to visit every country, I had to obtain visas for obscure nations and some of the hardest countries to visit in the world.

This was an endless task when we travelled in West and Central Africa. 

In hindsight, I have no idea how I managed to muster the patience to continue on the adventure.

At times, it felt like we spent more time going back and forth to embassies than exploring actual cities.

I ultimately didn’t have a say in the matter. I had to obtain those visas to continue on the adventure.

things i don't miss about travel passport
Things I DON’T miss about travel – Applying for visas is never fun

Getting visas is one thing I don’t miss about travel, but this will never change. 

There’s an irony here. I still have to obtain some visas to complete my goal. Funnily enough, I already had them all.

After much time, money and energy obtaining them in early 2020, they’ve expired. Due to the pandemic and returning home to Australia, I could no longer travel to those countries.

Once the world has recovered from this pandemic, I look forward to visiting my final 9 countries.

Are there any things that you don’t miss about travel? Have you been targeted for a scam? Fallen ill from something you ate? We’d love you to hear your travel story. Tell us about it in the comments below.

More Travel Tips

We have so many tips to help you travel more!

These 21 cheapest countries to visit will help you stretch your hard-earned dollars further.

Read our top 6 travel hacks to save money and the 20 best travel apps to make travel easier! 

For food lovers, don’t miss our top 10 best countries for foodies. And, if history is your thing, these 30 amazing historical places worldwide will fascinate you!

We have many tips to save money for travel and consider these 20 jobs that PAY YOU to travel the world to help you travel longer.

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Our 12 essential tips for safe travel in any country are worth a read. 

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Tasty Food Adventures

10 Comments. Leave new

  • Great blog! Thanks for sharing. For me delayed flights or missing connections , paying to use public toilets and needing coins and dirty accomodation. Feel very millennial saying this but not having good wifi or internet to check on things.

    Reply
    • I totally agree with you about delayed flights and missed connections, which can really mess up travel plans. And having an internet connection is always good to have for peace of mind, and to check on things as you mentioned. Thanks Shona 😉

      Reply
  • Incredible blog! I will continue to read more Thanks for the tips with the end of the pandemic now I will be able to travel more calmly

    Reply
  • Got to know a lot from this! Everything was so relatable.
    Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  • You really had a great expreince of travelling. I love this reading. Thank you for sharing this article.

    Reply
  • Relatable post.

    Reply
  • As an Indian passport holder, applying for visas has been really a mammoth task every time. We have to start weeks in advance and the amount of paperwork required is immense. I really find it the worst part

    Reply
  • I’ve wondered what traveling would be like, so it’s good to read a post about the not-so-wonderful things about it.

    Reply
  • Have just been told about your site and enjoying reading different stories and articles. Am about to embark on my first o/s trip in awhile (in 8 weeks) and I guess my new dislike about travel will be trying to get PCR tests everywhere before I cross borders. Not looking forward to that at all, but with 4 o/s trips booked this year, I had better get used to it. I guess trying to avoid getting Covid before or during travel is going to be a relevant dislike as well, especially with this new very contagious variant. I am prepared to do what it takes, dust off my passport and hit the road…

    Reply
    • Hi Cherie,
      Thanks for your comment and congrats that you’ll soon be embarking on your first o/s trip! Yes, Covid has changed the way we travel – but if you’re prepared and know where to find the information/entry requirements/papers etc for the destination you’re travelling to, it’s not difficult at all. We had many questions from other readers who are a bit anxious about travelling during Covid too, so we actually published a post last week to help. I’d recommend checking it out, here’s the link – Travel during Covid – Checklist for 2022. You’ve got the right attitude about your upcoming travels, so that’s awesome. Also, in the post I’ve linked here, check out the travel insurance we mention. We highly recommend them to cover you during your travels and the best part is that they cover Covid and even unexpected quarantine too. Happy Travels 😉

      Reply

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