Updated: Oct 30, 2020
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If you've landed here you're probably a traveler yourself or maybe you'd like to travel more post-COVID-19. Intrigued by the all-around importance of travel, I've interviewed 27 fellow travel gurus from 9 different countries & all different backgrounds. Here's what I found...
“You're off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, So... get on your way!”
1. Improves your Health
Traveling after/during a pandemic could cause worry. Maybe others are itching to scratch their travel bug… wherever you are on the spectrum traveling has many benefits for your mind, body & soul.
According to the Framingham Heart Study, men & women who traveled annually were less likely to suffer from a heart attack or develop heart disease. Men, specifically, who did not vacation for several years were 30% more likely to suffer a heart attack.
Annette White from California, U.S. owner of The Bucket List Journey states, “It is simply a time to re-energize your batteries or disconnect from the stresses at home.”
& Andrea Chase from Chicago, U.S. & singer in Chase&Park agrees, “Traveling is an excuse to relax! Also, usually traveling means spending more time outdoors, which is a great way for us to experience nature especially if you live in a concrete jungle.”
Not only does traveling relieve stress but some parts of the world actually have natural healing properties. Yes, you heard that right.
According to the Daily Sabah, “The medical miracles of hot water springs in central Turkey heal dozens every day. The springs in the Kozaklı ...have treated rheumatism, muscle and joint pain, and even psychological disorders...”
2. Cultural Sensitivity
Cultural sensitivity is the ability to have empathy & understanding of other backgrounds different from your own. This quality is especially vital in business & to be a well- rounded human being. In recent news on the Black Lives Matter movement, brands like Elf Cosmetics who is matching all donations to the cause, Nike's 'For once, Don't Do It' campaign, or Airbnb's Project Lighthouse initiative show their support in being culturally aware & responsive.
Vegan Enthusiasts & owners of Alternative Travelers, Sam Anthony, from New York & Veren Ferrera, from California, U.S. explain, "We strongly feel that it's important to make an effort to learn and understand why different cultures do things a certain way, and why others might hold certain attitudes and mindsets. Being exposed to differing viewpoints can help travelers become global citizens, engaged in bettering the world for all."
Traveling is important because one is able to understand there's more than one way to do any one thing. For example, David Castonguay & Tara Kranics from Canada state “We always say how the more we travel, the more we realize that there aren’t right or wrong ways to do things- just different. Like for example, if something in a “developing country” takes longer (like doing laundry by hand), it’s not wrong, just different. And in its own way, it is exactly perfect.”
Juliana Costa from Brazil & owner of Remotely, agrees, “physically moving to a different location makes confronting different realities a daily practice. Something as simple as shopping for groceries in a new location can be challenging, or at least make us go "huh, didn't know it could be done that way."
Immersing yourself in what a different culture finds important could be the key to connections & a deeper understanding. Monica K., a passionate tea lover from Boston, U.S. says, “Wanting to see more than what’s sitting in the palm of your hand, trying new things! I found this through tea - it’s given me a way to participate in local cultures and traditions and sparked incredible conversations with those working and living in the places I visit!”
Breaking the Stereotype
It is said that 55% of Americans don't have a passport & the numbers are said to be much higher for the Black Community. Chanice Williams aka "Queenie" from New York, U.S. a creative storyteller & owner of Fly With Queenie, exclaims, "it’s especially important for black people to travel because we do not exercise our right to travel by getting a passport and exploring places beyond our backyards."
If you're still not convinced to get your passport & start traveling, check out, "10 Reasons Black Americans Need a Passport." or get inspired by Jessica Nabongo; the first black woman to travel to 195 countries, #blackgirlmagic.
"I think it is important to travel because, in America, you can easily see that a significant amount of Americans aren’t cultured. People from different ethnicities and belief systems are constantly being stereotyped."
3. Networking Opportunities & Relationships
Travel is important because not only do you meet people from different walks of life that will potentially become business partners, forever friends, or even a future spouse...relationships with your loved ones at home are tested for strength & commitment.
Take Jasmine Langloisa a Virtual Assistant from North Carolina, the U.S for example, "So far I’ve traveled to 26 countries and along the way I’ve met so many amazing people I would have never met otherwise; some of which became my mentors, closest friends, and even my husband."
"We are so close-minded oftentimes to people around us in places we don’t expect. So many amazing people & cultures in th