Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Travel Abroad Advice for Aspiring Expats
Yes, your trip will cost some money so you should begin budgeting for travel, lodging, food, and entertainment. For you young men, you should save your money for a once a year or once every 2 years trip to a different country than you have been to before. Don't buy that new laptop, iPhone, or Blackberry. Safe the money for your exploratory trips!
For unmarried middle aged men, it is far easier for you to travel 4 times a year when you are single with no kids. Your savings and salaries are generally higher at that point in life.
Where Should You Travel
You should travel to the poorest countries that have the women you find most attractive. Even if your visit to that country ends up that you do not like that country, odds are a neighboring country to that one might suit you far better. For example, I thought I would like Bulgaria, but a visit there proved to be lackluster for me. I then took the 30 minute flight to neighboring Romania and had an absolute blast of a time!
If you stay in the capital cities first, you will find many people who speak English very well. Many of the smaller towns have English speakers in this age of the internet and cable TV programming from the US.
Strike up conversations with some hotel clerks, bartenders, waitresses, or others. Most people are very open to interacting with Americans since they likely never met one in person. These people can be valuable resources as to where to eat, stay, hang-out, and where to avoid.
Countries And Travel Plans To Avoid
My man from singleabroad.com summed it up when he wrote that you should avoid......
Pretty much all Western Europe, particularly London, Paris, Amsterdam, and other large cities.
Places that are heavily promoted in the West as vacation spots: Negril, Jamaica, Cancun, Cabo, Mexico, etc. At these places you are mostly going to meet American and European tourists and local prostitutes.
Avoid "resorts" and "cruises" ("expensive, rip off centers of cheesy boredom" is a good description I heard). "Singles cruises" and "singles trips" are the worst; you'll be spending time with spoiled aging American women looking for a quick lay or a "provider".
How You Should Dress
When traveling abroad, you should not even bring sneakers unless you like to jog regularly. Bring nice looking walking shoes that can go well with shorts in the day time, and with jeans and a blazer at night. Think Clarks or Rockport type shoes. Shoes bring the air of sophistication and women respond well to that. A cheap blazer with a t-shirt and jeans make you a possible rich man in the eyes of all the ladies. Save the oversized hip hop gear for back home or your little brother.
Don't wear rings and watches in the street at night. I do wear them but I put them on in the restroom after I arrive at clubs and bars, them remove them and place them in the blazer pockets when I leave. This deters crime and makes you less of a target for jealous local men.
Leave most of your cash, most of your credit cards, and your passport in the hotel locked in a safe or in your luggage. If you are robbed, you don't want to be left without options for money. Only walk around with a copy of your passport on your person.
If you are sick, in trouble or you lose a passport, each US Embassy has an American Citizen Services section that will help you out with loans, temporary passport documents, or hospital/jail visits if it comes to that. Always have their number handy and register online with the State Department so they can assist you in a disaster by knowing you are in country: https://travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs/ui/
Your Most Likely Enemies Abroad
Be pleasant, but trust no one, especially men, in another country. Everyone will be curious, but curious about how to dupe you. Don't get into cars with new "friends," don't flash money around, and don't ever trust a cab driver. Always insist on the fare before the cab ride or they will pump up the price without a meter. Cab drivers are the WORST.
Women who are too friendly are likely prostitutes or opportunists. Never listen to their sob stories and loan them money. Most women who are interested in you from poor countries will offer to pay for some or all of drinks, dinner, et cetera. Don't be a dupe.
When The Travel Bug Bites
After a 1 to 3 trips to different regions, you will be a pro and you will crave the time when your next trip begins. When you get a taste of being treated as an equal human being, as attractive human being from pretty women, and as the man that you are, you will have been bitten by the bug!
If You Happen To Meet The Lady Of Your Dreams
You will likely meet women you would have never dreamed of in short measure. Don't lose your head. Try to meet a plan B, a plan C, et cetera. Don't propose and don't start planning to bring her to America. Make it clear from the start that you would rather settle down there and start a family with her. Whatever you do, do not marry! It is better to shack up with a lady, have kids and live happily ever after. Marriage impedes your ability to just cut and run if you ever need to do so.
Initially you will simply be enjoying your adventure and new life experience. But your goal should be to find the place or places that you want to retire or live in (unmarried) with your young woman and any kids you might have with her. I know several men living with their women abroad who plan to do so till the very end. It's a great idea and one that I will embark upon at age 50 as soon as the pension kicks in!
Get planning and get going. There is more advice on the happierabroad.com forum from people like Winston Wu and Ladislav who legendary expat experts.