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Traveling Alone or Family Travel Whether you want to travel alone, or travel with the kids, parents, or granny, this forum is for you!

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Old 08-17-2005, 02:05 PM   #1
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After alot of research and reading everyone's advice, I'm hoping friend's that I've asked to go with me don't want to go!

Realistically, I don't think I'll have a travel buddy anyway. The problem is my parents. I am 23, female, and they DO NOT want me to go alone (I think the Natalee Hollaway tragedy has scared them a bit). I know numerous people have asked this same question but I think my parents are alot more hesitant!
I'm going to do what some of you suggested-keep them informed on my intinerary and what i'm planning to do, and I think I will print off some reassurances from the message boards and show them! I will probably do Busabout just because it seems to be safer and fits with my travelling plans.

BUT-I don't think this will be enough! I'm scared they won't even read what I show them! What else can I do to assure them!? (I'm going in June-so I have a few months to convince them)
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Old 08-17-2005, 02:15 PM   #2
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Sorry, the Busabout might have given it away-but I forgot to mention I'm planning on going to Europe. Starting in Athens, then going back up the Eastern Route to Paris.
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Old 08-17-2005, 02:17 PM   #3
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Hollz - You will never be able to convince your parents that travelling is safe. If they don't believe then they probably never will. I found that it's more about getting your parents to a point where you travelling is the norm. I got my parents to that point just be constantly being gone around the country. Though even my mother said that she would feel better when I would post on my travel site that I hooked up with someone or a group for a bit. Meeting people in hostels is always a great time and they are generally very tpunkish which makes them cooler than anyone back home.

So step forward and go, send her a postcard and tell em that you met some friends and never let your parents feelings get you down!
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Old 08-17-2005, 02:22 PM   #4
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Sorry-I forgot to say where I was going! (although Busabout probably gave it away). I'm planning on starting in the Greek Islands, then up to Rome, and going the Eastern Route to Paris, and flying out of London.
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Old 08-17-2005, 04:07 PM   #5
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There are tons of books in the travel writing section of book stores about women traveling alone - I'm sure they'd contain convincing arguments.

As far as that Holloway chick goes, she was a high school chick who made a bad judgement taking off with some guys at a club. Sure, whatever the guys did was wrong, but lack of savvy always triggers disasters. Your chances of being kidnapped/disappearing are miniscule.
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Old 08-17-2005, 04:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by omisan@Aug 17 2005, 10:07 PM
Your chances of being kidnapped/disappearing are miniscule.
[snapback]73837[/snapback]
Yep. They're about as good as getting kidnapped/disappearing in the U.S. Hell, ALL of the shit that "could" happen to you over there is a risk that you're taking every single day just by being alive. Plus you're 23-- while I understand the desire to please your parents, they truly don't have a say over it when all is said and done. Unless you have something else going on there that gives them power over you, that is.
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Old 08-17-2005, 04:53 PM   #7
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Yeah since Im kinda a big guy, Ill be sporting the "Fat People are Hard to Kidnap" T-shirt, while Im about in europe
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Old 08-17-2005, 05:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
"Fat People are Hard to Kidnap"
That rules!!!1!!1
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Old 08-17-2005, 06:18 PM   #9
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But seriously, dont put yourself in those kind of situations and you should be fine. Ive trained in Jhu Jhitsu and Muy Thai for off and on 7 years,Ive been in fights, Ive been shot at several times, been stabbed and have been attacked by dogs (love my work), I would hate to have it happen while I was on Vacation! Ive walked the scariest streets of Hunters Point, EPA, and East Oakland and never had a problem. Being street smart also has alot to do with it. I admit it Im scared of traveling to foreign countries by myself and not know any of the language but Im not going to put myself at risk or any travel companions at risk either. I would do what everyone is saying on here travel together from bars when you can, dont be out early mornings, and keep aware of surroundings. Other then that, party it up! Just a question?? Is pepper spray Legal In europe, like the small key chain ones??
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Old 08-17-2005, 06:22 PM   #10
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EPA and East Oakland I have no problems with, but man, I've recently been to Bayview/Hunter's Point in the daytime and felt uneasy.

But yeah, street smarts (and general awareness) is what's going to keep you alive, no matter where you are. And as an American traveling in Europe, you're even less likely to have problems. See, their economy is doing better than ours, so holding a Yank for ransom would be pointless with our exchange rate
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Old 08-17-2005, 07:54 PM   #11
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True, true. I figured I could take my family in their raggedist clothing to the worst trailer park I could find and take a pollaroid of them and carry it with me. That way in case I do get kiddnapped they could see I was broke and let me go! Yep used to live/work in Hunters Point 3rd & Fitzgerald (GHETTO) for two years. Really hard being the only white person in 6 square miles! Omi what part of the bay do you live?
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Old 08-18-2005, 01:48 AM   #12
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I live in SF (Alamo Square) and work in San Jose (next to Santana Row) - how bout you?
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Old 08-18-2005, 03:06 AM   #13
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there are plenty of females on these boards that have tralled alone, me included and im only 2 years older than you. Parents always will be concerned about their kids travelling whether they are in groups or travelling alone, there is nothing that we can do but just get out there and go! Your 23 now start living your life for yourself and not for other people
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Old 08-18-2005, 08:15 AM   #14
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Hey, thanks for the advice.
Just a heads up-had a chat with my mom yesterday due to her concern over a Volunteer Abroad brochure I got in the mail. She still doesn't like the idea of me traveling alone, but I think she's realized that she can't stop me anyway.
So far so good I guess!
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Old 08-18-2005, 10:54 AM   #15
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Quote:
I think she's realized that she can't stop me anyway.
If'n they ain't a-payin' your bills, you ain't gotta listen to 'em

Actually, I prefer to respect my parents' wishes and desires to some extent, but hey, you're a grown-up and can make your own decisions, right?

There was some other member here who, in a bid to convince her parents she could do it, took a trip to San Diego with her dad, but did the whole hostel/budget thing to prove that it's safe and do-able. You might wanna give that a shot if you encounter further resistance...
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Old 08-18-2005, 12:55 PM   #16
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Thats cool, a mini trip to calm the parents nerves. It sounds like your mom is the one worried most. How does your dad feel about it?
Hey Omi, Im back living in Santa Clara, but I work all over from SF down to Salinas. Geez your commute must be hell!
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Old 08-18-2005, 04:26 PM   #17
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Nah.. 280 to San Jose in the morning is a reverse commute. And scenic. And very few cops

Hollz - take your mom on a mini-trip to show you can handle things. And if anything gets a bit hairy, don't let her step in and show that you can handle it.
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Old 08-20-2005, 03:17 PM   #18
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Hey Hollz I took my first trip to Europe when i was 23 for two months alone. My parents were a little worried, but it was ok. I think a big thing that made my mom feel better was travel punk
Before I left home i had meet a few of the members on the boards and had become good friends with a lot. So my mom didn't worry because when ever I needed help with anything I had someone here to fall back on. You can try to explain to your mom maybe a little about us. Also even though you are traveling alone if you are staying in hostels you are never really alone. I made a lot of friends in the hostels ( it is hard not to) and went places with them also. So with travel punk and hostels you are never going to really be alone
Pluse you are going to have the time of your life!!!
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Old 08-21-2005, 12:59 PM   #19
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Hey Hollz, I'm just finishing my 7 1/2 week backpacking trip to Europe as a SEVENTEEN year old female solo, and while I have heard stories of other travellers encountering trouble, usually it's because of stupid things that they have done which have led them in the way of danger. As long as you know how to take care of yourself in sticky situations and know when to stick with other backpackers (particularily in shadier places at nighttime) you should be fine.

As you're starting your trip in Athens, the men you encounter should get progressively better (minus Paris). I found the greek men (particularily in athens) to be the worst I encountered because you get used to dirty old men and just men in general hitting on you in europe, but usually you can just ignore them and keep walking. Athens was the only place where the men actually tried stuff. I definitely left Athens the most disgusted I have been with the men I've encountered...and I was only there for a day. For the most part though, really it's fine. You meet so many people in the hostels you're never really alone, unless you want to be. My parents were really against me going to europe solo as well, but it wasn't really their decision. I'm can be very head strong when I need to be and this was something I knew I had to do for myself. Good luck! If you need any more adbvice just PM me,

-Laura
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Old 08-27-2005, 02:22 PM   #20
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hey hollz --

bear in mind that "solo traveller" is kindof a misnomer:

it just means that YOU make the decisions where to go and when to move on, where to stay & where to visit (without compromise).

if you're staying in hostels (and i presume the same for this 'busabout' scenario), you are gonna meet tons of ALSO-solo travellers. sometimes you meet people you really dig that are heading in the same direction & maybe you'll ride some rail together, or whatever. "solo traveller" just means when you get sick of others (or them u), or your road-mate wants to head to naples while you're dead-set on venice, you don't have to have a blowout, end a friendship, or worse --give up something you wanna do for something you don't.

it's not like you're gonna spend 3 months in europe ALONE (unless that's what you're after). tell your parents there are like-minded people all over the world who's parents are similarly nervous about THEIR little "solo traveller" being in europe...

trust me. i've been doing it for 11 years with nary an incident.

but your parents love you, dude. give 'em a big hug & kiss for me...

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