I know this is going to sound strange coming from a travel blogger, but it needs to be said. I built my brand on transparency and honesty and I don’t sugar coat things. I’ve written many articles in the past encouraging people to travel and I’ve said many times before, people who don’t travel, simply don’t because they don’t make it a priority. While this may be true, there are many people in the world that are simply unable to travel even though it may be very high on their bucket list, and they shouldn’t be travel shamed because of this.
I think I may have been guilty in the past of travel shaming people unintentionally, but today I’m here to say, I’m sorry. Sorry for being that person. When we are young, our priorities are different. Young unattached people are free to do whatever it is that they want to, they have a ton of disposable cash, but as we get older in life, life humbles you. Travel becomes more difficult with age and priorities, no matter how much you wish and will it into the universe.
As a travel blogger, I find it unsettling that many people on social media and many bloggers shame people because they aren’t in the same place in life. Yes, many people would prefer to be in Africa cuddling lions, but guess what, that mortgage is due and so is that school fee. There is nothing cute about getting evicted because you chose to show up and off for your social media followers.
I recently heard a story about a gentleman who was celebrating his 40th birthday and was lamenting about never being able to take his six children to Disney World. While some of us may turn up our noses and say, ‘but, it’s just Disney’, have you ever factored in the cost of a family vacation? Plane tickets, hotel rooms, transportation, food, amusement park tickets, souvenirs and shopping? That’s an easy five to seven thousand dollars! How many families do you think have this much disposable income just sitting there? Not a lot.
I made the decision to forego any big trips during the first quarter of 2017 in order to hit my goal of paying off my $40,000 student loan. While travel is super important to me, I vowed to myself I would bite the bullet and save to get Sallimae off of my back. Thank God, I’m near the finish line! I could’ve paid off my college loan a very long time ago but I chose to travel the world. Now, I realise that I could’ve saved a whole lot more and went on even more amazing adventures had I done this sooner. This is it for me, my one big debt. This is what responsibility looks like. I decided to adult, just this once, but guess what, some people don’t have this luxury. It’s a constant ball of bills and debt and responsibility.
To those out there that are laden with responsibility, it’s ok. No two paths are the same. I just need my kinfolk out there in the social media world to stop it with this irresponsible messaging. Everyone can’t travel, and there is nothing wrong with that. Some people choose to build their career, some choose to have a family, and some choose to save. I created this space to encourage those of you who can travel to travel and for those of you who can’t, to see the amazing adventures that await you one day.
While I acknowledge that everyone can’t jet set like I can, my goal is to take you on the journey virtually. When I move, you move…just like that! 😉
P.S. For those that are grounded for a while, how about a Staycation?! There are so many things to explore and discover right in your own backyard!
LET’S KEEP IN TOUCH!
Next month, I will be spending my 39th birthday on my first International (solo) trip.
Even though I am single, no children and make a “fairly decent” income, this vacation has been a huge financial sacrifice, from paying bills months in advance to cutting back on daily expenses to brown bagging my lunch. I won’t even get into the financial emergencies and rookie mistakes that has forced me to dip into my spending cash.
Now that I have experienced travel planning first hand, I do realize that travel isn’t feasible for everyone even when using all of the savvy tips and tips from seasoned experts.
My wish is for everyone to experience a grand vacation at least once in their live, I understand that it’s not everyone goal, and that’s ok.
Kimberly! I hope you have an amazing experience! Happy early Birthday! Solo travel is soooo rewarding, you’ll wonder why you waited so long. But, I echo everything that you said. Travel is a sacrifice, one not for the weak, or someone with lots of responsibility. I advise anyone to at least do something big at least once! That memory will forever be with them!
That was a beautiful piece Sherice that was well-said! I’ve felt that sometimes but it’s like other than the fact that I’m in full time grad school, I have bills to pay lol
Thank you Nonee! The struggle is real. Real people have responsibilities!
I really enjoy reading your blog. This article hit home; I would do this to myself. Plan the most amazing trips but never follow through. But this year I started the year off with travel and planning for an amazing solo 30th birthday trip.
Kai! Thanks so much! 30 is a milestone! You HAVE to plan something and execute! Let me know if you need any ideas! Even if it’s somewhere small, you should so do it!
I agree with you! Sometimes we have to make sacrifices for the bigger gain. We’ve put big trips on hold this year and focusing on paying the rest of our mortgage off which hopefully will be in the next year. Until then, staycations and smaller trips 🙂
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