How to not be a Jerk when Traveling in Poor Countries

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Or; Nomadic Matt Needs to Check his Privilege Have you ever witnessed a tourist haggling vigorously with a local over what amounts to a few bucks – or worse, five cents? I’ve seen this. Literally – five cents. If you’ve traveled in poor countries, I’ll bet you have, too. Haggling becomes a game for tourists, [...]

A Rebuttal: A Case for the Tropics

You won't find beaches like these (or boys like these) up north.

  This article was guest-written by our friend and fellow dirty vagrant Carmella Guiol.  In response to the post praising the colder regions of the planet, I have decided to retaliate with my own post in praise of the warmer, tropical regions of the world! Raised in South Florida without an air conditioner, I might [...]

On Hating Americans

Sorry we fucked up your culture and economy, dude. Here, have a nice baseball cap. [credit]

I was recently in Berlin, where I spent pretty much the entire week stuffing my face with falafel. (Side note: I challenge anyone who whines about European immigration to eat more falafel and take a good hard look at the joys you’re railing against). The man who served me my delicious falafel asked me where [...]

In Praise of Cold Places

See those birds in the icy water? Those are flamingos. Even the flamingo, state bird of Florida, can enjoy bathing in cold weather.

I don’t know where you’ll find me a year from now, and I think that is awesome. If you were to press me for details, though, I’d probably tell you that you’re unlikely to find me lazing on a beach in some island paradise. It’s not that I dislike beaches, or the sun (but if [...]

You Can’t See Europe in Two Weeks

Not a great alternative to Doritos.

  We all know that person who’s tried to “do Europe” in two weeks – maybe some of you have even been that person. If you have been that person before, you can probably stop reading this article right now, because that’s not the sort of mistake any reasonable person makes twice. And we assume [...]

Why Are Travel Writers (And, More Generally, Travelers) Often So Obnoxious?

And then some travel writers lie about how they actually get there

We’ve all met ‘em before. Sometimes you encounter people on the road (or in the blogosphere) who are so head-deskingly stupid, so skin-crawlingly creepy, that all you can really hope to do is give them a nice high-five to the face (suggestion: don’t. Some impulses should not be acted upon.) Also, that’s not entirely fair. [...]

The Problems with Voluntourism

Did you know that a baby armadillo is called a "diglet"?

This is a difficult article to write, and I think I will offend a great many people. I want to preface it by saying that I’ve been there – I’ve participated in many volunteer abroad programs (some which charged me a hefty fee, and others I found for free). I’ll speak to some of the [...]

When to Save, When to Splurge

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One of my first solo trips abroad was to Brazil, when I was 18. My parents didn’t feel comfortable with me heading to Brazil alone, so I got in touch with another girl from New England and we opted to fly together. I told her to just buy a ticket and send me the flight [...]

Put that camera down!

Don't even look, it is embarrassing.

Do it. Take a day to explore without your camera. I spent a whole gap year traveling without a camera. Do I wish I had pictures now, to look back on? Sure I do, but the experience was awesome. This is the truth – no picture will ever come close to matching up to what [...]