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9 Popular Myths about Travelling – Debunked



You must have heard those scary traveling stories where the most horrifying things happen to the traveler or those myths regarding the inhabitants of a particular place. These myths and stories are common and very stubborn, they refuse to die out even when contrary evidence exists.

If you have fallen prey to these myths and put off traveling to certain locations, its time to understand what’s false and what’s real. Here are 9 travel myths, debunked:

1. All countries speak English

It is highly unlikely for all the countries of the world to speak English. With the diverse cultures and languages in the world, you can expect to face some language barriers when traveling. Although many countries are English-language-friendly, knowing a little bit of the local language will help you when asking for directions or making purchases. It is also a good way to earn bonus points with the locals and get good deals when using taxis or public transportation.

2. It’s not safe to travel

This is one travel myth that is spread by travelers, the media, and even you. First, travelers may spread such stories in a bid to paint their journeys in an audacious light. In addition to this, horrifying travel stories are more likely to make headlines all around the world, outshining peaceful and safe travel accounts. Between the “daring” travelers and the media, you can quickly hold on to this myth and even spread it.

Without a doubt, there are certain destinations you should avoid when traveling but the areas you can visit safely far outweighs these ones. You should adhere to the local rules and regulations in any location you visit. Employ safety strategies to stay safe and avoid danger.  Make sure to ask locals, hotel staff, and hostel owners for advice and guidance. Talk to fellow travelers and travel in groups when necessary.

3. You can’t work overseas

Working overseas is possible if you are flexible about work options and job functions. Numerous opportunities exist for travelers who want to work. Countries like Australia and New Zealand, you can volunteer in exchange for room and board, teach English or become an au pair. Plus, there are house-sitting jobs that can take you around the world.

Minimum wage jobs at bars, cafes, and restaurants are available or you could start a travel blog documenting your travels. Sure, the job might not be fancy or well-paying, but if your main aim is traveling, it will get you where you want to be.

4. Traveling is only for the young

Travelling has no right or ideal age, whether you are 70 or 22, you can travel wherever or whenever you want. At any age, traveling will provide you immeasurable and unforgettable experiences. Traveling in your youth will give you wisdom and build your knowledge. Traveling when you are older keeps you young at heart.

The common stereotype of young people as avid travelers has been replaced. These days, travelers from different countries, with varying experiences and from every age group exist. The only way to confirm this is by traveling yourself.

5. The air on a plane makes you sick

A couple of things can make you sick on a plane, but the air is hardly going to be one of these things. Airplane air can be dry, but it will only dry out your skin and not make you sick. The air in airplanes is pumped from the atmosphere, warmed, and filtered through numerous HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters. HEPA filters eliminate bacteria and harmful microbes in the air being pumped into the cabin. So, even when the air is recycled, you can be sure it is clean.

On the other hand, germs on shared surfaces like the lavatory handles, headrests, and tray tables can make you ill.

6. Street food is unsafe

This is a common one shared by travelers and non-travelers alike. It is okay to prefer fine-dining options with air conditioning rather than eating on the street, but this does not mean street food is bad.

The idea that food from restaurants is healthier because it is prepared in a “proper” kitchen by chefs is uncertain. This is because you are not privy to the going-ons of the kitchen and can not attest to what is being done to your meal.

Most types of street food are prepared on demand, right in front of you. Plus, street food is often subjected to very high heat through barbecuing, deep-frying, or stir-frying. The high heat will eliminate any harmful element in your meal before it gets to you.  

7. Travel insurance is not necessary

Travel insurance is a must for extended peace of mind during your trip. It is a core travel requirement. You definitely do not wish for injuries or unfortunate events during your trip but you can not see the future. Travel insurance covers hospital bills in the case of any injuries and may cover your personal belongings in the case of theft or damage. Travel insurance provides an added level of protection during travel.

8. Women shouldn’t travel alone

Traveling solo is a learning experience for everybody. You can go wherever you want, whenever you want. Women can travel alone but must take adequate precautions to keep themselves safe. Make friends with other travelers and stick together. Avoid areas deemed risky or unsafe by the local authorities. You can book a tour package so you are not wandering by yourself. This being said, traveling alone is a good opportunity to meet like-minded travelers and make friends.

9. All-inclusive means all in one price

The all-inclusive myth is more of a confusion than a myth. Many people take all-inclusive to mean one fee covers all events and activities. The only way to avoid falling prey is by reading the fine print to know what is included in the all-inclusive package, what the fee covers, and what is excluded. Don’t be so swayed by the attractive offers that you forget to focus on the details. An all-inclusive package does not mean all-encompassing. Seek advice from professionals like Malcolm Pacific for professional travel guidance.


These stories and myths, while some might be true are not the norm, so don’t let it put you off traveling. Now that you know better, you can start booking your flight tickets to those places you have avoided in the past. Traveling is an eye-opening experience that increases your knowledge and appreciation for other cultures and places. Remember to adhere to local regulations and obey restrictions. Safe travels.

The post 9 Popular Myths about Travelling – Debunked appeared first on Travel Experta – Family Travel Blog.

By: Shahbaz Ahmed
Title: 9 Popular Myths about Travelling – Debunked
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Published Date: Tue, 15 Sep 2020 13:33:14 +0000

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Would you dare baptism in the Devil’s Bathtub?




Close my eyes and count to three as I anticipate to dive into the deep, ice cold pool of water – The Devil’s Bathtub, located in Southwest Virginia. Jumping in is not recommended for the faint of heart. I stare into the aquamarine abyss and question the life choices that led me to this.

Deciding if I have the courage to jump into the Devil’s Bathtub. Photo by Maddie Luchsinger.

The Devil’s Bathtub is a place that no person can stay for very long – it is wicked in the way its cold can take the breath away of the people who dare to jump in. It is the type of cold that sucks the breath right out of your lungs and frightens every skin cell of your body. It is a bathtub-sized pool that is, perhaps, 25 feet deep, full of the fresh spring water falling off the mountains. You’ve hiked 2.5 miles up a mountains, crossing a river 17 times. Your muscles are sore. So jump into the Devil’s Bathtub and find out what happens when you dunk them in ice.

After I was baptized by the Devil in southwest Virginia, I felt cold for days. It was a deeply guttural coldness, like I was thawing slowly from the inside out.

Swimming in the Devil's BathtubPhoto by Maddie Luchsinger

In all the time I’ve spent exploring the world, there are only one of a handful of times I can remember being this cold – in the middle of the night, camping in the desert in North Central Mexico. I was there on a church trip, to build houses in the slums of Tijuana. This was something the church of my youth did a lot in the 1990s/2000s – took groups to do manual labor rural parts of Mexico. That year, in the desert of Baja California, El Nino brought on exceptional rains that flooded our campsite and soaked my belongings. The temperatures at night would reach just above freezing, and the lumber that kept our campfires roaring was wet and ineffective. I have this memory of huddling around the dwindling embers of a dying campfire, desperate to get warm, under a deep sea of stars. I remember feeling like I would never feel warm again.

The second time I’ve felt that cold was whitewater rafting the Upper Youghegheny River in Upper Pennsylvania in the early spring. My group spent the entire weekend camping in a pouring rainstorm, on 50 degree days, and then rafted a flood-stage river of class IV-V rapids. I fell out twice, and swam down a class IV+ rapid called the Meat Cleaver. I remember feeling cold for days after, and vowing to never go whitewater rafting again.

When I jumped into the Devil’s Bathtub, these were the memories that came flooding in. This was a uniquely painful kind of cold. And the thing that was so devilish about it – it was an enjoyable pain.

Maybe I’ve cursed myself, jumping into the Devil’s Bathtub. but in 2020, who can tell the difference?


Devil's Bathtub Trailhead Duffield VAPhoto by Maddie Luchsinger

How to find the Devil’s Bathtub

At the end of Highway 619 just outside of Duffield, Virginia. Duffield is located less than 2 hours from Knoxville, about an hour North of Kingston, Tennessee.

This is a popular hike with an established parking lot at the trailhead. Hikers can choose to go left when the trailhead splits for a 4 mile roundtrip journey to the Devil’s Bathtub, or take a right for a 7-mile loop through the mountains. The trail is clearly marked with a yellow square tag.

Plan for the trail to take an hour per mile, and wear shoes that can get wet. You have to hike across a river 17 times, and you are almost certain to get wet. There are a few areas of treacherous terrain and sharp drops, so keep an eye on young children and dogs at all times.

The hike can be found near Duffield, Virginia, about an hour north of Kingston, TN. I recommend camping at Natural Tunnel State Park, less than an hour away. NTSP has a well maintained and safe campground, good for car campers or RV tows.

Natural Tunnel is a rock formation that has naturally formed in the mountains, created a naturally carved train tunnel. The park offers a fun chairlift to the bottom, a fun activity for families or tired hikers.

Title: Would you dare baptism in the Devil’s Bathtub?
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Published Date: Wed, 23 Sep 2020 16:15:00 +0000

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Rediscover the San Juan Islands: Adventure-seekers will love this Northwest destination.




The journey starts with either a ferry or a floatplane—there are no bridges to the San Juans Islands. Leave stress behind as you board in Anacortes and set sail on the marine segment of the San Juan Islands Scenic Byway. You can relax, you’re on island time now.

The San Juan archipelago in Washington State is nestled between three great cities for visitors – Seattle, Vancouver B.C., and Victoria B.C., surrounded by the Salish Sea. Of the 172 named islands in the San Juans, three of them – Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan – have accommodations, attractions, and amenities for visitors.

The archipelago is blessed with a temperate marine climate and life in the “rain shadow” of the Olympic Mountains means an average of 247 days with sunshine annually and about half the rainfall of the Seattle area. San Juan County has more than 400 miles of shoreline punctuated by rocks, bluffs and beaches.

The arts, historic preservation and environmental stewardship flourish in the Islands. San Juan County is considered an “Arts Hot Spot” by the Washington State Arts Commission for the number of artists and galleries in the islands. It is also the first county in the USA to be designated a voluntary “Leave No Trace” area. Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, the archipelago’s only incorporated town, was named a Destination of Distinction by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

No matter your style of vacation, you’re bound to find it in the San Juan Islands. For nature enthusiasts, there’s world-class wildlife watching including orcas, humpback whales, bald eagles, Steller sea lions, and red foxes. And there’s a variety of ways to see it: along a network of waterfront hiking trails, from shoreline parks, from tour boats and private vessels.

For adventure seekers, beautiful landscapes and a calm inland sea make the San Juans a prime sea kayaking spot. Paddle your own kayak or set out with one of the many knowledgeable kayaking outfitters on San Juan, Orcas, or Lopez Island for three-hour to three-day tours.

For foodies, find quality local products, and experience the sense of community shared by island chefs, growers, winemakers, distillers, brewers, and other agricultural artisans. Some local farms even offer stays for guests who want to get up close and personal to the islands’ bounty.

If art’s your thing, you’ll find a gem in the San Juan Islands Museum of Art, with three to four first class exhibitions a year. The San Juan Islands Sculpture Park at 20-acres is one of the largest outdoor sculpture parks in the Pacific Northwest.

Humpback calf ‘Slate’ breaching by Jeff Friedman

Find variety, beauty, serenity … day after amazing day.

As we navigate the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, we are following the guidelines set by the Washington State Department of Health and Governor Inslee’s office. San Juan County is currently in a modified Phase 2 of Inslee’s “Safe Start” plan. Accommodations are open at 100%, and restaurants vary between curbside pickup, delivery, and limited indoor and outdoor seating. Face coverings are required to enter all businesses and public spaces.

Editor’s Note: we are working with local tourism boards to highlight destinations that are ready for tourists. Given the ever-evolving situation on COVID-19, please make sure you check the tourism website for the most up-to-date planning information.

From Nature to Nurture the San Juan Islands provide inspiration for the senses (

Title: Rediscover the San Juan Islands: Adventure-seekers will love this Northwest destination.
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Published Date: Tue, 22 Sep 2020 15:18:00 +0000

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This interactive map shows where you can (or can’t) travel in the US




In an effort to make traveling easier, United Airlines has developed an interactive map tool that allows customers to filter and view destinations’ COVID-19-related travel restrictions in the US. The Destination Travel Guide provides a color-coded map to highlight if a destination is closed, partially open or fully open for travel, and notes if tests or self-quarantining are required for travel.

The guide currently highlights travel restrictions and leisure offerings in the US by state, and will expand to include all international destinations the airline serves in the coming weeks. Users can click on each state to view local regulations and travel guidances, and there is also the option to filter the map by state to view specific information on each destination. This information includes the medical certificate needed, such as a negative COVID-19 test, physical distancing measures and whether wearing a mask in public is required. It also outlines the visitor accommodation, restaurants, bars and cafés, museum and heritage sites and non-essential shops that are open.

The interactive map tool that allows customers to filter and view destinations © United Airlines

“We know it’s a challenge to keep up with the ever-changing list of travel restrictions, policies and regulations so we are offering a simple, easy tool that helps customers decide where to travel next,” said Linda Jojo, executive vice president for technology and chief digital officer. “By providing the most up-to-date information on the destinations we serve, customers can compare and shop for travel with greater confidence and help them find the destinations that best fit their preferences.

Check out the new interactive map tool on here or on the United mobile app.

Lockdowns are easing globally as the planet adjusts to a new normal. Find out how COVID-19 is changing travel.

Title: This interactive map shows where you can (or can’t) travel in the US
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Published Date: Thu, 10 Sep 2020 15:36:58 +0000

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