Why Travel is the Greatest Investment

santorini, travel

“travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer”

It feels like every time I go on Facebook there’s someone announcing a baby, a house or an engagement. I’m 22 so most of my friends fall within the 20-25 year old age bracket. But it made me think, I couldn’t even imagine that type of commitment even at 25, let alone right now.

If you’re an avid reader of my blog and follow along on social media, you’ll know travel is, and has always been, a top priority in my life. No matter how close or how far, I have always chosen to invest my time and money in travel over almost anything else, and many people I know tend to disagree with that. They think it’s childish and immature, and they’re just waiting for me to grow out of this “phase.”

I can’t count the times in the past I’ve heard “where do you find the money and the time?” or “shouldn’t you be saving?” But then I think, isn’t the whole point of life to live; to choose your own path and focus on what makes you happy? Yes, starting to save up for a house or something permanent would probably be very safe and smart, but it wouldn’t make me any happy. It wouldn’t do anything for me other than provide comfort and keep me locked down for a very long time.

I’m just not okay with that. In fact, it kind of leaves my chest feeling a little tight.

I would rather put my money towards seeing the world.

“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.”

Travel allows you to step outside your own world and see your life from a third perspective. It puts almost all your stress at ease, and makes you realize you don’t need to worry about most of the things you usually do at home. When you’re stuck in a rut living out the same routine every day at home, you lose sight of what truly matters in life.

floral dress in santorini

It challenges you

In the short time that I have traveled, I have learned more about myself than I could have ever imagined. It pushes you to your absolute limits and challenges your mental and physical strengths. These challenges come in many different forms – from missing airplanes and being stranded on islands, to navigating foreign train stations and parachuting over mountains. Traveling isn’t all smooth sailing, the reality is there’s lots of mishaps and unexpected turns (literally going to glue my passport to my hand so I don’t lose it for the 84023987th time). Although incredibly frustrating at the time, these become invaluable life lessons. But nothing declares your independence and growth more than conquering challenges on a day to day basis. It really encourages you to come out of your shell, meet other people, and gain self confidence. You learn to think on your own two feet. When you invest in travel, you invest in yourself.

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” St. Augustine

Cultural appreciation

Travel doesn’t just make you appreciate different cultures, it makes you experience them. It allows you to embrace how the locals live. It opens your eyes to different ways of living. There is more than one way of thinking, doing and living. It’s one thing to read and learn about a city, but it’s another thing to stand foot in it, and have a local show you around. When you embrace cultural and environmental differences, you can look at those in your own community without judgement and a better appreciation.

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” – Mark Twain

Memories that last a lifetime

Words will just never do justice to some of the great travel moments I’ve experienced. Those memories are ones I’ll hold onto forever and that can make me smile even in the worst of situations. Some I can hardly believe happened and feel so surreal to think about. I would trade any material possession to relive those moments. Get lost in the medieval streets of Prague, dance until sunset in the bars of Cuba, embrace the crowds of times square, para glide over Rio, and go on a 4WD off-road adventure in the middle east… Why live an ordinary life when it is meant for so much more?

santorini travel

What are your thoughts on investing in travel? Is it a priority for you? I’d love to know why/why not!

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  • Great post gal! I’d love to travel if I could but because of studies and finances, I’m not able to. I’m going to study in the UK for a semester next year and can’t wait to go travelling while studying! x

    TOUCHOFGUCCI // BLOGLOVIN

    • Thank you!! Ooh that’s a fantastic idea. Studying abroad is always such a great way to travel and see a new city! I’m actually thinking of working abroad in the UK for a few months! xx

  • Peppermint Dolly

    Great post, you learn so much about yourself and others when you travel! Memories made for a life time :-)

    Rxx
    http://www.peppermintdolly.com

    • So so true!! You definitely learn some invaluable lessons :) xx

  • I really enjoyed this post! For all of my life I’ve used my money towards things rather than experiences. I haven’t done much traveling, but now that I’m 26 I’ve finally realized that things aren’t necessarily going to make me happy and I rather invest my money and time in travel.

    http://www.insearchofsheila.com

    • Thank you Sheila!! You never regret money spent on travel :) xx

  • Jessica Riley

    I’ve spent so much money on travel and on clothes. The difference? The money I have spent on travelling has never been regretted.

    xoxo
    jessica
    from
    The Crown Wings

    • I’m the same!! Haven’t regretted a single penny I’ve spent on travel & I’d do it all over again :) xx

  • Ashley Christabelle

    I wish people would understand my passion for traveling, and not regard it as something ‘childish’ or unrealistic. My thoughts on traveling is the same as yours and I wish and hope to explore more parts of the world!

    http://www.ashrealasitgets.blogspot.com

    • I am in the exact same boat! I don’t know why traveling is regarded as immature and childish?! I’m guessing most of those people never traveled for themselves! I’m so glad you could relate Ashley :) xx

  • I couldn’t agree more with this post! Like you, I am not ready at all to settle in a life that fits the norms of our society – meaning getting a flat/house, marry and have a baby. I’m not sure I’m even ready to commit to a full-time job haha. Travel just makes life so much richer, intense, and as you rightly said, it makes you feel freer, you worry less about the little things and it helps to take a step back when things get too much. I hope to travel for the rest of my life, and never be stuck in a routine that leaves me unsatisfied. There is so much to see out there!

    Julia x
    Last post: Photo Diary of Cefalù, Sicily | http://juliaspeaksbeauty.blogspot.fr/2016/09/holiday-diaries-discovering-cefalu-in.html

    • Oh I’m so glad you could relate Julia!! I’m really not sure if those things will ever satisfy me, at least not for a very long time. Travel makes you realize there’s different ways of doing things and your life doesn’t have to pan out to fit society. Loved your comment, thank you for sharing!! xx

  • Hannah Ison

    Love this! Travel is definitely a rich experience.

    • Thank you Hannah! So happy you agree :) xx

  • Sabina

    I feel the same way exactly, and I couldn’t agree more with everything you said! I love when I meet like-minded people that share the same passion for travel and life philosophy! This is a very inspirational read!

    Sabina | http://www.IveGotSunshine.com

    • Yes!! I always meet so many like-minded people when traveling, it’s the best :) Thanks so much for reading Sabina! xx

  • I loved this post, you write so beautifully! I am obsessed with travelling, i’m definitely in the same boat as you, majority of my facebook feed is of people getting married and having kids and I’m like…I’d like a dog and to travel the world?!?!?! There is just so much to see and people to meet! :)
    x Kenzie
    Kenzieblogslife.blogspot.com

    • Thank you so much Kenzie!! Haha yes, it’s so weird?! There’s SO much to see and do but I guess everyone has different priorities. I’m so glad you could relate :) Thanks for reading lovely xx

  • Mimoz

    great article.. i completely agree

    • Aw thank you so much!! :) xx

  • AyanaPendergrass

    What a great article! You’re so right, why live an ordinary life when there’s so much out there to discover. I remember studying abroad in Rome my junior year of college and thinking to myself, “wow this is what I’ve been missing out on?” It can sometimes be scary to go to a foreign place and not know what to expect or who you’ll come in contact with, but in the end, you’ll come out of it as a new person!!

    • SO jealous of you studying abroad in Rome!! What an incredible experience. Yes for sure, so scary but so worth it!! Thanks so much for reading gorgeous! xx

  • Deychana

    I 100% agree with your post. There are so many ways to live and enjoy life.

    • Thank you so much!! So happy that you agree :) xx

  • Trish Kozlak

    Absolutely love this, and have never met someone that expresses it the exact same way I feel!! Xo

    • Aw Trish!! Thank you so much, that’s so sweet of you to say. You’re definitely not alone :) xx

  • Love this! I don’t also fit the box of getting married, having kids, etc. Although, I travel with my boyfriend all the time. We love our lifestyle right now and we wouldn’t trade it for anything else but I always get pressured to be married and having kids already. BUT I just can’t! I just won’t have this time again in my life and the freedom that I have now.

    http://www.christinelovestotravel.com

    • Yes!!! So with you there, Christine. You guys sound like me and my boyfriend!! We love the freedom of traveling and not sure if we’d ever “settle” into another lifestyle. Live the life that makes you happiest!! :) xx

  • Marty

    Totally agree with you & I was feeling / saying the same things as you since I was a teen. Traveling either solo or w/friends (& significant others, at times) has been in my blood since I was 19. I, too, could have been saving for a home which would have been paid off by now.
    Instead, I traveled the world (and I hope I’m not done yet). I don’t regret one dime spent on that and the memories are still unforgettable even decades later.
    I eventually did buy a home (decorated with some of my favorite purchases from my travels!). I have had to cut back on traveling because of that, but no regrets.
    You have to answer to no one but yourself. Life is short and you should continue to grab ever my chance at happiness, in whatever form!

    • Thank you SO much for your comment Marty, I admire you! I love the last quote “you have to answer to no one but yourself” – very true :)
      investing in travel is the one thing that makes me value life so much more, so why not continue! xx

  • I completely agree with all of your points! I love to travel, I’ve been exploring my country as often as I can and I will do more travels as I can as I grow older. This is a very great read, keep up the good work! xx

    http://www.itsrenalexis.com

    • Aw thank you Renee!! Being a tourist in your own country is always fun :) where are you from lovely? xx

  • Babak V

    You have great ideas and point of view…I really enjoyed that! I think one of the first things to consider for those who wants to travel and learn among it, is to be open to their situation they are about to see… No judging and see how people around the world found a way to stay happy.

    Cupoftrip.com

    • Thank you so much! I’m so happy you agree. And yes!! Absolutely. So incredible to experience how others live xx

  • Loved this post. Couldn’t agree more with you have written. Keep travelling!
    http://www.thevagabondwayfarer.com

    • Thank you so much! So sweet of you to say :) I definitely will!! xx

  • Lost in the right direction

    Thanks for this article, its really cool. I’m leaving for my second big trip in 9 days to south america and I am scared in some way but way more excited and everything points to the direction I need to do this. I sold almost all my stuff, quit my job and saved up a bunch. People keep asking me what my plan is but the only thing I know is that I’d really like to volunteer/workaway to experience countries outside of the backpacking scene, so for now that is what I will be doing! I think the thing that both scares me and that I both love the most is not knowing what I will be doing exactly in a new place that I’ve never experienced before. So thanks again, this article came at the exact right moment for me :D!

    http://www.iamlostintherightdirection.wordpress.com

    • Thank you, so sweet of you to say!! That is amazing!!! It’s going to be incredible. So jealous, DYING to visit South America. How long are you traveling for? Enjoy every moment, definitely the experience of a lifetime :) xx

  • Liz Norment

    so well said. thank you for sharing this! it’s given me a bit more confidence when faced with constant questions as to why i’m concentrating on traveling rather than settling down. <3L. http://www.brooklynimtrying.com

    • Aw you’re welcome Liz!! Don’t ever settle for less than what makes you happy :) Thank you so much for reading lovely xx

  • Rikke

    I never got to travel the world at your age, but try to make up for it now by dragging my kids along.. at age 9 they have visited France, Italy, Spain, Singapore, Dubai/Oman, Iceland, Florida/Bahamas, Germany, Sweden and Austria. Next up is Thailand.

    Settling down with job, house and husband first didn’t mean I never got to travel. I just make smaller trips and I get to share my travels with my family – which is also awesome! So go explore.. but don’t be afraid to put down roots. If you make it a priority you can still travel. You only get stuck if you choose to.

    BTW you missed my favorite quote on travelling: “To travel is to live” Hans Christian Andersen (1855)

    • OH I am so jealous of your kids, haha! How lucky to have seen so much of the world already. Thank you for your comment, I love that you still chose to make travel a priority – that’s awesome :) I do feel like some people who settle into a routine get stuck or can’t afford to step out of it though, you are very lucky! And I LOVE that quote! xx

  • Travelling was the best thing I ever did! You only ever regret not doing it

    http://www.beachcow.co.uk

    • I couldn’t agree more with you, Terry!! Thanks for reading :) xx

  • rchiariello

    “isn’t the whole point of life to live” Yes!! I hate when people make me feel guilty for not having kids. I would be miserable if I lived a “normal” ordinary life. I wouldn’t get to do half of the things I do now if I had children. One of my favorite quotes is by Belle in Beauty and the Beast… “There must be more than this provincial life.”

    • Exactly!!! Everyone is different & the same things aren’t going to satisfy us all. Most people feel fulfilled settling down with kids & a family, which is very acceptable, but it should also be accepted if that’s not for you. Nothing wrong to live a life different than those before you :) Love that quote!! xx

  • Ana P. Wildgust

    People always ask “why travel?” I say, “Why not?!” We have to realize that life and this globe
    is much bigger than the bubble we live in. We MUST explore it, learn from it. Travel changes you because like you said, it’s challenging at times, exciting at others. How else can we learn if we are not exposed to new concepts and things? #TravelIsLife

    • YES! Love that, Ana! It reminds me of that quote, “the world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” I couldn’t imagine my life in only one place! Thanks so much for reading & commenting :) xx

  • At this point in my life, travel is a non-negotiable. After 40 days in Europe this summer I am simply hooked and love finding out more about myself and the world

    • Ahh I know how you feel! Europe got me too. <3 xx

  • Hayley Rubery

    Girl; I’m so, so, so glad that I stumbled across your blog – I adore your content!! <3 I couldn't agree more with this post; travel is such an important factor in my life and not one that I would be in a hurry to change for anything right now. Exploring new places, immersing myself into new cultures and meeting friends for life… how can you put a price on that?! I feel you lady!

    Hayley xo
    http://www.frockmeimfamous.com

    • Aw that is so sweet of you to say!! Thank you Hayley <3 Loveee your comment. All the experiences & memories I've made are priceless. I'm so glad you agree! :) xx

  • Carla Valpeoz

    Hey there, I came across your blog post looking for others who love the adventure of travelling, and reading it got the travel bug in me again. I also have had some great travel experiences and absolutely feel it’s a great investment. you can read about my adventures at carlasvisionlessadventures.com I just recently started a blog and you will have the opportunity to follow my future travels as well as look to my past. Come check me out!

  • Megan Mclean

    I absolutely love this post and I’m completely the same. I’m always looking to get away and I love travelling more than anything. I’ve just gotten back from an Interrail trip around Europe and I’m planning my net one. I can’t think of anything I would rather spend my money on. Great Post!!

    Megan xx
    http://www.missmeganmclean.com

  • AJMoneyMatters

    “When you’re stuck in a rut living out the same routine every day at home, you lose sight of what truly matters in life.” – This could not be more true! Every time I come back from overseas I always have a fresh new perspective but then slowly get stuck back into my old routine with the stresses of work. But when you’re traveling it’s like you have a lightbulb moment and you realize that exploring, adventure and just living is what truely matters. I think travel but also relationships (with family and friends) are the best investments you can give yourself :) xx

  • Kristy Laws

    What an incredible post! And oh so refreshing to hear there are like-minded people out there! I always get “wow, you are going away again?” or “I am so jealous” and it infuriates me. Everyone can do this if they put their minds to it. You just have to make travel a priority in your life and that’s what it has always been for me. I know I am very fortunate to have seen so much of the world but I also know I have worked my butt off and taken risks to do so and have NEVER had one regret!
    Thanks again for your inspiring words ❤
    xox
    http://www.thegirlswhowander.com