Solo Female Travel

The Surprising Downside of Wanderlust: 5 Real Disadvantages of Traveling

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Updated: 10 November 2022

Yes, welcome to a post all about the “disadvantages of traveling exist,” my friends.


I know, I know. You’re shooting me death glares from Chiang Mai, Berlin, Cuzco, Sydney, wherever you’re located right now. I’m sorry.

Hear me out, though, before you revoke my travel blogger card. I promise I’m writing this post for good reasons, haha.

The negative aspects of travelling including navigating COVID-19 restrictions.

Travel is our passion. Believe me, I know. Travel changes us! We are now citizens of the world! We’ve jumped off planes, eaten bugs, hiked mountains, shared dorms with strangers, and visited the homes of great writers (at least I like to).

I’ve made many financial and social sacrifices to chase my globetrotting dreams. I know in my heart that those journeys are worth every penny. There are so many reasons why I love traveling so much. So many.

One of the Drawbacks of Traveling is Being Stuck at EWR.

Table of Contents

5 Surprising Disadvantages of Traveling

Well. Lemme tell you something else, my friends.

Travel, in addition to its wonderfulness, complicates your life. The travel bug is a disease. I wouldn’t change that disease, no way, but “the bug” can throw your personal life out of whack. Even bloggers acknowledge pros and cons of travel exist. We all experience them.

Shall I list the various disadvantages of traveling for you? Buckle in, my friend! You’re in for a brutally honest treat.

As a side note, I talk a lot more in detail about the advantages and disadvantages of solo travel in this guide, but feel free to start here for something more light-hearted. 

Daily Conversations Now Bore You

Ouch. I realize this is a harsh statement, but it’s also way too true for me. So, so, so true. Please tell me that I’m not alone as I live this reality of lackluster conversation in my day to day life in New Jersey.

What do I mean about boring conversations? Well. For example, listening about someone’s upcoming hair appointment, soccer match with the kids, argument with the bank teller, etc. tires me out. I hate to admit it but here’s to honesty: a lot of the time, I mentally peace out of conversations at work and home. After traveling, I can’t relate to a lot of day-to-day small talk. I can’t even muster enough excitement for someone’s graduation or wedding unless we’re either blood relatives or best friends.

I don’t intend to be mean. And I promise I’m not!

All I’m saying is that travel makes me feel so alive that other, more familiar topics pale in comparison and therefore don’t draw me in. I’m fully aware that standoffish behavior makes me look like a jerk sometimes. I also understand that not listening, truly not listening, to others is snobbish and unfair. I’m not proud of this behavior and make efforts to combat it.

So… yeah, my travel experiences prevent me from enjoying simple conversations at home. And it’s not cool.

You Sound Like A Braggart

We’re all different in life. For example, I think Super Bowl Sunday is the lamest day of the year. My dad and brother bleed Philadelphia sports and go to tons of games. The teacher next door excels at algebra and geometry. Math makes me break out in hives. Embrace diversity. And remember that these personal likes/dislikes extend to travel, too.

Some people can’t or won’t travel. It’s a reality of life.

Sure, travel is a priority for me, but not for everyone who is close to me. These folks don’t necessarily want to hear about my life-changing experiences abroad in every. single. conversation. I’m TRYING to improve on this awkward habit of mine, where I start off every sentence with “one time in Paris” or “when I was in Vancouver” or “on my trip to Italy.”

I really don’t bring up my experiences with the intent to make someone jealous. It’s not in my nature at all. Rather I am passionate and those phrases tumble out of my mouth unrehearsed… way more often than I would like. Sorry to friends and family! At the end of the day, unintended bragging is one of the disadvantages of traveling.

So, all you lovely readers out there in the internet world, if you have some good tips about sharing your travel stories without sound like a complete show off, please send them my way and I will give you cookies. Homemade cookies.

Missing an amazing sunset like this one is a disadvantage of traveling.

Relentless Itchiness (aka Unforgiving Wanderlust) at Home

Argh, I’ve gotten better with this third disadvantage of traveling, but the struggle is still “oh so” real.

Folks … All I do at home is plan my next adventure. I don’t write that to be funny or overdramatic. I’m dead serious. Immediately after work, I plop down at my computer and do one of the following: read travel blogs, check for low airfare, watch travel vlogs on youtube, or write an itinerary for an actual or fictional trip.

It’s baaaaad.

Hi from Venice! Need a disadvantage of travel? Nowhere else is as cool.

Needless to say, I have a travel addiction flowing through my veins. While great at times, my obsession also means that when in-between trips, I don’t appreciate the present. Instead I focus on amazing experiences that lie in my future.

I need to remember that life is a gift. We’re not guaranteed another day. Hell, a car could hit me on the drive to work tomorrow. Would I really want my last moments on this planet spent daydreaming about a future date?

I’m not saying never read or research about travel ever. But appreciate the present a little bit. Even when you’re stuck in suburban New Jersey.

Your Bank Account Will Hate You for Life

Let’s be real: travel costs money.

Yes, there are many ways to travel for cheap or even for free, but at the end of the day, traveling isn’t a super duper cheap endeavor. There’s a myth that travel is a luxury item, yes, but it’s still not like paying for a cup of coffee. You need to save money ahead of time. And, uh, there are times when you need to cut back on the groceries to fund your travel habits. Cough, cough.

If you read this blog, you can tell I have a bit of an obsession with Europe. Airfare from Philadelphia/New Jersey to Europe costs anywhere between $700 – $1500 dollars for a return ticket. No small lump of change.

I’m lucky because I don’t have student loans (please don’t hate me). However I pay for every single trip with my own money, and teachers don’t earn the highest salaries. For me, every adventure has been worth its price tag, but I still wince seeing the money leave my bank account en masse.

So, yeah, expect some money saving troubles if you love to travel as much as I do. It takes planning.

Saying Goodbye Is the Literal Worst

Goodbyes never seem to end in my world.

My friends are scattered around the world. A lump forms in my throat whenever its time to say “goodbye” to my travel companions. Why? Because there’s a 95% chance that I will never see that person again.

Sure, we remain connected on social media, yet there’s still nothing quite as fulfilling as in-person interactions. Travel makes these reunions complicated and difficult. The friendships we form sometimes only thrive in our memories, which feels incredibly isolating to me, and I’m sure a lot of you guys are in the same boat.

I totally get it.

Goodbyes suck. Enough said. I’m still not sure what the solution to this con of travel is, but if you find one, let me know. I guess all I can say is don’t become a heartless person and enjoy those friendships while you’re in the present moment. You won’t regret it even if leaving is painful.

I don’t let the disadvantages of travel stop me and neither should you!

In what ways has travel complicated your life? What do you think are the main disadvantages of traveling? How do you “fight them” and continue your adventures around the world? Thanks for visiting my blog! You guys are the greatest!

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