The changing face of travellers

After taking STA Travel’s ‘Travel Tribe’ quiz on their Facebook page, where users can find out what kind of traveller they are, I started thinking about travelling in general and the different trips that people choose to embark on. I came out as part of the ‘Free Wheeler Tribe’, which means I like going with the flow, making new friends along the way and am not a fan of planned itineraries, preferring flexible travel and last minute choices.
Whilst this may be the definition of a typical ‘traveller’ stereotype, do we need to fall under this type of category to consider ourselves true globe-trotters?

For example, with trips to the likes of Budapest, Berlin and Barcelona available for under £150 for 3 nights, more and more people are doing their ‘travelling’ in smaller bursts. You now don’t need to take a year out of work or study, with weekend breaks handily fitting around busy schedules.

In a modern world, where employers actually look for evidence of self-improvement such as solo travelling, it’s no wonder that more and more people are flocking to the far ends of the globe. However, don’t feel daunted that you may have to spend thousands and put your current life on hold. Sometimes your bank balance, job or various other factors don’t allow for that round-the-world trip, and the idea of completely immersing yourself in a new culture (often alone) for a lengthy time, doesn’t appeal to everyone.

The results of the quiz also accommodated for people who prefer more luxury travel – yet ‘back-packers’ are often so keen to judge this preference. Your trip doesn’t have to be long and extensive, and the aim doesn’t have to be to ‘find yourself’, as some might say. A 5* ‘cheese and wine’ holiday to the south of France for example may be more palatable for some. If you prefer parasailing in Fiji to living in a hut with Thai locals, then that’s just fine too.

Travel shouldn’t be something reserved for the select few, nor have specific guidelines or criteria to meet. Many of us may feel intimidated by the many gap year stories we hear around campus, whilst wistfully wishing our bank balance would double. That all-inclusive trip you took to Barcelona with your family last year? Well you can go ahead and brag about that too. All of us are ‘tourists’ wherever we choose to go and however many places we visit – as long as we enjoy visiting various destinations and appreciating other cultures, we’re all under the ‘traveller’ category.

So however you want to travel and whatever tribe belong to, the world is an incredible place to explore, go for it!


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January 2022
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