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How To Avoid Tourist Traps

Falling into tourist traps is easier than you might think and people all over the globe are more than happy to take your money. 

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Traveling isn’t rocket science, but it can get pretty complicated fast, so it’s best to be prepared for everything. Falling into tourist traps is easier than you might think and people all over the globe are more than happy to take your money. 

Tourist traps are ancillary businesses usually surrounding an already busy attraction that offer no actual insight or advantage. Basically, they are ways to con tourists into spending money they do not need to spend.

Avoiding these traps will make your vacation more enjoyable and save you money in the long run. Wasting money while on vacation is a bummer, so we devised this easy plan to avoid tourist traps.

RESEARCH

What’s the best defense against anything, research? I was a boy scout and we were taught to always be prepared and this lesson has served me well so far. Search the internet for the attractions and destinations you wish to visit and find out what you should and shouldn’t pay for. Always ask locals and your hotel concierge for recommendations, so you can avoid traps and touristy situations.

WHERE ARE THE LOCALS?

First thing I do when I get to an attraction is look for locals because they don’t get scammed and rarely fall for tourist traps. You just don’t see locals in Times Square in NY or at the Acropolis in Athens, they avoid these popular destinations like the plague. If you see locals at a restaurant, chances are the place is good, that is the perfect litmus test.

STAY AWAY FROM THE TOURIST ZONES

Where you book your accommodations will weigh heavily on your vacation experience. Touristy zones tend to be more expensive, have less overall charm and generally are not realistic examples of the city. Why stay in a tourist trap when you can experience the city like a local and truly get the most out of your travel?

This is why I love using shared economy services like Airbnb and VRBO (Vacation Rental By Owner) because they give you a more authentic adventure.

MULTIPLE TRANSLATIONS

If you see something advertised using multiple languages (more than 2) then chances are it is a trap. These are translated multiple times so it has the widest range of people that will see it. It’s like fishing, the more bait you put out, the better your chances are of attracting a bite.

BARKING DOGS BITE

I’m not talking about literal dogs, instead, I’m talking about people outside of attractions or restaurants barking or yelling to attract customers. Think about it, when you go to your favorite restaurant at home, s there a guy out front yelling about deals? Of course not, because that is a crazy thing and an obvious sign that you are falling into a trap.

COUNTRIES THAT RELY ON TOURISM

If a country solely relies on tourist dollars the chances of you getting an authentic experience are pretty low. These countries, usually Caribbean and Asian are quickly becoming tourist traps and losing their own identity. The global tourism economy is eroding countries character and uniqueness. 

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Travel

Traveling Creates Personal Growth

I often get asked why I want to leave home and travel. Won’t I miss everyone and everything? Won’t I get lonely? What am I running away from? We all have our reasons for traveling – wanderlust, the love of a new culture, a desire…

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Why do I travel, is something that gets asked of me often and for a while I didn’t have an answer.  It actually took some solo travel for me to have the time to ponder that great question.  I reflected on what I was doing and why was I there.  The answer is different for everyone, so my reasons will certainly be different from yours and so on.  The simple answer to why we travel is for personal growth, but what does that mean?

Every person has their reason to travel… exploration, freeing your soul, personal growth, trying to forget something, searching for answers, boredom or do you just want to see the world.  I’ve always believed that travel is particular to each person.   For some travel can be backpacking around the world, while travel for others can be driving 100 miles to the next major city, all that matters is your personal growth.  

The cool thing is that travel means different things to different people and my definition has no bearing on yours.  The key is that you find your own reasons to travel and just do it like nike.

No travel book is written for you unless you are the author.  I can’t live your life for you, but I can give you some useful advice and if you follow it that is on you.  I hope you do travel and I hope you figure out why you travel, because I have and its changed my life.

Travel is a collection of moving parts that you hope gel together to create a memorable and favorable experience. That collection of moving parts is how you will experience a trip and hopefully help you become a better person.  Is this improving your personal growth?

 

The world moves so fast nowadays and with modern conveniences we lose sight of many of the important aspects, like personal connections and understanding how other people think. 

Life moves fast and it helps to slow down on occasion and appreciate how amazing everything is.  The synergy of our planet is pretty cool and if you don’t spend time to check it out, after awhile it will be too late.

I’ve been moving pretty fast recently, married, new job, and the one constant in my life is my need for wanderlust.  A constant need to better myself, my situation and my happiness.  i’ve learned that life won’t slow down for you, if you want change, you have to actively work on it.

Is there personal growth?

Now is the time that you must decide why you travel or if you don’t, why should I.  I’m tired of hearing the same excuses for why people constantly put off traveling and these excuses never stop.  If you want to experience life and not just get by, travel and see the world.  This will hopefully open up your eyes to how other people think and live, by doing so, you will be a better person.   This is your homework assignment: seriously try and think about why you travel or should travel.  Try and think about the last trip you took and how it affected your life, your mind and your world view.  Hopefully you were positively affected by your trip and you found soe inner peace along the way, cause I know I did. 

 

Check out the full article on NomadicMatt

Photo courtesy of 1elemental and Lifehacker

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Mexico Travel Deals: Win 20 Years’ Worth of Free Caribbean Luxury Vacations

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One of the most affected industries due to the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic is tourism. To offset the heavy financial loss, a few places like Mexico and those in the Caribbean recently reopened their borders to tourists.

Mexico, along with other places in the Caribbean, is a favorite pre-COVID-19 vacation destination for a number of tourists all around the world. So, to enliven the tourism industry once again, they created the trending hashtag, #Come2MexicanCaribbean (and its Spanish equivalent, #VenAlCaribeMexicanoX2) to promote post-COVID-19 tourism in these areas.

To further strengthen this campaign, would-be tourists are encouraged to remember their memorable visits of the Mexican Caribbean region and the different things they might like to do there in the future.

The said contest awards a lucky tourist with a 20 years’ worth of yearly vacation to the Mexican Caribbean area combined with a 5-night, all-inclusive stay in any of the 4- or 5-star coastal resorts there.

Contest Sponsors

The competition is sponsored by several tourist hotspots including those of Cancun, Isla Cozumel, Isla Mujeres, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, and Tulum. It is also backed by top hospitality developer Atelier Group and the Quintana Roo Tourism Board.

How to Join the Competition

If you are interested in the said contest, here are several guidelines for you to follow:

  •  Contestants must be 18 years old;
  • You should be a resident of any of the following countries:
  1. US,
  2. Canada,
  3. Mexico,
  4. Guatemala,
  5. Colombia,
  6. Peru,
  7. Chile,
  8. Brazil, and
  9. Argentina;
  • You must have either a TikTok or Instagram account (or both);
  • Post a video or a photo that features your favorite Mexican Caribbean beach vacation/s;
  •  Include the specific tags, #Come2MexicanCaribbean and @Come2MexicanCaribbean;
  • Follow the said initiative’s TikTok or Instagram profiles, @Come2MexicanCaribbean;
  • Tag their accounts on either of the platforms mentioned; and
  • The post that garners the most likes, plays, comments, and shares gets to be the winner of the competition.

The contest begins on 9 November and ends on 27 November 2020. Entrants should be able to post their entries within the given period.

You can also read the full terms and conditions of the said competition here. You may also visit en.come2mexicancaribbean.com for more information regarding the contest.

Summary

Mexico’s tourism industry comprises 8.5% of the nation’s overall GDP. Last year, an approximate of 24 million tourists visited the North American nation. Despite reopening its borders to visitors in July, the country’s roster of resorts and hotels still find it difficult to alleviate the effects of the lengthy lockdown imposed by the government earlier this year. The rapid increase in COVID-19 transmission is yet to slow down and the government aims to find more effective ways to flatten the curve.

The #Come2MexicanCaribbean aims to remind travellers of the country’s long-held tourist industry and the enticing spots that used to be go-to vacation areas in the region. It is their hope that by doing this initiative, the height of tourism will come alive again once everything goes back to normal.

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Travel

How Travel is Ruining our Planet

Travel is a good thing. I’ve encouraged people to do it in countless blog posts. But, in the rush to get people to travel, we often over look the negative impact of it. We talk about how travel can be a force for good- breaking…

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Let me preface this by saying that I’m not against travel, I write a travel blog for Pete’s sake. I have been telling people to drop everything and travel, and in my haste I’ve neglected to mention the possible environmental implications. Travel makes people better for doing it and that is a great thing, but we don’t talk about the repercussions to said travel. So, the question asked is; do we travel too much and is this travel adversely affecting our planet?

If you are a reader of mine, then you know that I constantly push for people to travel, so this will sound out of character but these are my reasons to not travel.

 

Destruction of local customs

The increased technology and constant metaphorical shrinking of our planet, we have created less cultural identities. We used to travel to explore new things and see corners of the planet yet seen by our eyes. But with technology, we have seen the planet from our computer and TV screens, so what are we exploring? Now with traveling to distant cultures we are inevitably bringing our culture with us and in so devaluing others. McDonalds are popping up all over the world so we all can be destroyed together.

 

Travel Trivializes Culture

Tourist traps are ruining our planet one trinket at a time. It’s sad when cultures are simplified down to some terrible stereotype that we have created to sell T-shirts. Originally people traveled to see parts of the world and experience different cultures, and now these experiences are being manufactured for our pleasure.   Children are being forced to accept that their reality is now selling trinkets and playing a part in some traveler’s fantasy of a culture, it’s sad.   It’s more of a problem of our planet’s globalization rather than anything else.

 

Local economy

Travel essentially destroys local economy by taking the tourist dollars and funneling it all to corporations. Locals don’t own the big hotels, huge conglomerates do and they profit form cultural destruction, essentially.

 

Environmental disaster

Travel is terrible for the environment and we don’t seem to care. More people are flying, driving, eating, shopping etc than ever before and our waste is just piling up. We constantly consume and consume but never really stop to think about what our excess usage really does to the environment.

 

Economic Issues

Tourism is centered on striking while the iron is hot, meaning that its not worried about the future, it’s all about the now. You see it in history and its repeating it self now. Towns go boom or bust with tourism and when that bubble burst, the town is left holding the bill. Look at the Salton Sea; it’s a tale that is all too familiar. A small town is suddenly thrust into a feeding frenzy of tourism money, then when the tourists stop coming, the town suddenly dies. The Salton Sea was a California hot spot in the 60s and 70s and now it’s a desolate ghost town.

 

Don’t make this stop you from traveling but allow this to open your mind while traveling and think about the possible repercussions of your actions. Maybe if we travel more consciously, we can fix our planet.

 

Check out the original article at Nomadicmatt

 

 

Photo courtesy of BoredPanda and FoxNews

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