We all love to dream about traveling and our mouths open in awe when someone we know talks about their vacation plans. We desire to have the same experiences that famous world travelers have and to take breathtaking photos and share them on Facebook, for all of our family and friends to see. But do we really know how to travel and do we have the courage to do it? Certainly, there are a lot of misconceptions about traveling that don’t help us make the right decisions. Follow along as I debunk some of the most common Travel Myths and put your fears at ease!
#1. Booking a trip last minute saves money – Travel Myths
This might be true in some rare cases, but if you want to have a journey designed to your preferences and expectations, you need to plan in advance. Waiting until the last minute to purchase flights to can be detrimental, as flight prices regularly fluctuate and can drastically increase when purchasing last minute. Also, remember that many of the best hotels and cruises may not have availability.
Plan ahead with SouthAmerica.travel >> Customize Your Dream Vacation
#2. You can save money traveling by bus or train – Travel Myths
Traveling by bus or train might be nice if you are in Europe and you have two months of vacation time, but traveling in South America is a different story. For example, it is normal to have 4-8 flights included in a 10-20 itinerary. Unless you have extra time for a 20-hour bus ride, I don’t recommend taking that course of transportation. Instead, I recommend spending that valuable time sightseeing. Especially since long distance buses can sometimes cost more than a plane ticket. Don’t be fooled by this common travel myth!
#3. Traveling is dangerous – Travel Myths
Traveling can be risky at times, but it doesn’t mean you should avoid exploring new places. Taking the necessary safety precautions such as storing valuables in a safe, being aware of your surroundings and making sure people know where you are, can go a long way. If you don’t feel comfortable traveling alone, then book a tour with SouthAmerica.travel; we promise to take good care of you. The local guides know the best places to visit that are safe and welcoming to tourists.
#4. Traveling as a single woman is dangerous – Travel Myths
If you use common sense when visiting a new place, you’re unlikely to run into problems. Think about what you wouldn’t do at home and steer clear of those actions while abroad. For example, when walking to your hotel late at night, choose the crowded streets lined with open restaurants and stores, instead of the empty streets with no one in sight. Use your intuition. Women have great intuition and great organization skills, and can conquer traveling alone!
#5. You should always travel in a group – Travel Myths
Not true! Traveling alone is a fantastic way to get to know the world and yourself. On a solo trip you have time to reflect on yourself, can choose the activities that suit your preferences, and can see how capable and independent you are. Instead of waiting for someone to join in on the trip just grab the bull by its horns and face the adventure that awaits.
#6. You can get a visa at the border – Travel Myths
Some countries do facilitate obtaining visas at the border, but what if you finally arrive at your desired destination and find out you can’t enter the country? Your vacation could be ruined. Instead of facing a closed door, remember to check visa requirements far in advance. You may need up to 4 weeks to obtain a visa, and it might require extra information such as the hotel or flights confirmations, so make sure to plan ahead!
Find out more >> Visas Info
#7. Everyone speaks English – Travel Myths
It would be great if that were the case, but unfortunately, there are still many countries where people don’t speak English or speak very little English. Instead of assuming that the locals will understand, it’s always a better idea to pick up some basic words and phrases in the country’s native tongue. Besides, the local people will appreciate your efforts in speaking their language.
#8. Travel agencies are cheaper than traveling on your own – Travel Myths
Organizing a trip with help from a travel agency is a lot of work for the travel agents, suppliers, guides, etc. And often, they are not given the satisfaction they deserve for their hard work in making your dream trip a reality. Not only do they focus on logistics, but they offer you their first-hand expertise and knowledge. It might be easy to book a hotel online but if you’re taking a 30-day trip, where you’re continuously changing location, do you really want to take on the hassle of planning the trip on your own? While it might be slightly more expensive to go through an agency, it’s better to invest money on reliable and experienced travel consultants, so that they can design an epic trip for you and your friends! However, travel agencies tend to receive better hotel rates and many offer special travel deals.
#9. Round-trip airfare is cheaper – Travel Myths
This is a travel myth in many cases. For example, if you want to go to Buenos Aires, but you are considering visiting Lima as well, you might think that a round trip ticket to Buenos Aires would be cheaper. However, you have to incorporate the extra cost associated with the flights to and from Lima from Buenos Aires. Rather than booking a round-trip flight, consider flying Buenos Aires, to Lima and fly home from Lima.
#10. Local food will make you sick – Travel Myths
That is by far one of the most common travel myths. Of course, you should watch what you eat, but at the same time, experiment with the local cuisine. If you eat at recommended restaurants, you should be okay. Trying new flavors while traveling is one of the greatest adventures; so don’t miss out.
Find out more >> South American Cuisine
#11. I don’t have the time to travel – Travel Myths
Today, society requires that we dedicate a lot of time to work. And it seems as though, we trade our travel dreams for a paycheck. Ask yourself the question, if not now, when? With good planning, you should allow yourself to take at least 1-2 weeks of vacation time a year? Don’t let your vacation go to waste, use it!
#12. Planning a trip is too complicated – Travel Myths
Planning a trip is a pleasure. The excitement of browsing the internet in search of places you want to visit is half the fun. Some people find it challenging, but the solution might be simple – call a travel consultant that will take care of all the details for you.
Find out more >> Customize Your Trip Today!
#13. You don’t need travel insurance – Travel Myths
Very big mistake! You don’t think about insurance until something goes wrong and you need it. A typical situation where insurance is necessary is when someone in your family becomes ill and needs to fly home immediately. At this point, all the service and accommodations that you have booked cannot be refunded. It is imperative that you have some sort of travel insurance so that the money you just spent doesn’t go to waste.
Find out more >> South America Travel Insurance
#14. They said it’s dangerous; therefore it’s dangerous – Travel Myths
Stereotypes. We repeat them thinking that it’s a complete version of a story and usually, it’s not. For example, people think of Colombia as a country full of drugs, violence and kidnappings. While the country has had some difficult moments in the past, it has developed tremendously throughout the years and has so much more to offer than just its painful history. Instead of believing this myth just check it out for yourself.
#15. “Traveling is way too expensive – Travel Myths
Set a budget before you start planning! Know the exchange rate and how much you plan on spending before you leave. The cost of traveling can be drastically different if you don’t know what you’re getting into. Be aware of the exchange rate, how much a taxi fare is, tipping rules and more.
#16. Traveling is tiring – Travel Myths
Everyone likes to travel at different paces. Some travelers want to have a 10-day trip packed with numerous destinations and two tours a day. On the other hand, some people prefer to stay at one hotel for five nights. Plan a trip that matches your preferences and know upfront what you are signing for.
#17. Traveling is only for young people – Travel Myths
Traveling is for everyone who enjoys experiencing new destinations and new cultures. Some people ask why travel agencies offer senior discounts? That’s because people that are older still travel! As long as you are in good health, age should not be an obstacle. For many older people, they have more time and money to travel; so why not?
#18. It’s easy to find nice hotels – Travel Myths
You should always know what to expect. In some remote destinations, it’s challenging to find five-star or four-star hotels. For example, it’s hard to find highly ranked hotels in Bolivia. That’s where using a travel agency comes in handy! Expert Travel Consultants can help you locate the hotel you want for your dream vacation.
Find out more >> Recommended Hotels in South America
#19. You can use credit cards everywhere – Travel Myths
Yes, in most places you can use credit cards, but when you travel to remote destinations, it’s better to have some cash on hand. Also, if you shop in markets where there are mostly boutiques and small vendors, credit cards may not be accepted. Also keep in mind that ATMs might be not available everywhere, and small shops or restaurants may only accept cash.
#20. Every time of the year is good for travel – Travel Myths
It depends. If you want to relax on a beach in Uruguay in July that is not a good idea as it’s winter. It’s always better to ask when is the best time to travel before booking your trip. Also, if you want to save money, you can plan a trip during the low season.
Find out more >> Best Times to Travel to South America