Part-time traveller, Full-Time Brummie

Traveller? Tourist? Or a bit of both?

I always feel something of a fraud when describing myself as a travel blogger.  After all, my experience of visiting Asia was a luxury honeymoon in the Maldives, I have never stayed in a hostel (indeed I baulk at the idea of sharing a bathroom, never mind my sleeping space), and generally never travel without at least 20kg of unnecessary clothing stuffed into a wheeled suitcase.  I’ve never travelled solo, unless you count a flight to Tenerife to stay with a cousin who subsequently returned to the UK before I did.  I’ve never even picked up a rucksack, much less trekked across the globe with one.  I regularly get messages from people who want to discuss my “travelling” lifestyle, and I have to confess that I spend much more of my time thinking about travelling than actually travelling.

So am I a fraud?  I read tales of those with a nomadic lifestyle with envy, and wonder how people can hold down a full-time job, fly to the other side of the world on a Friday and still be back in time for the office on Monday morning.  Despite the fun of planning a road trip, or negotiating how to get from A to B, I still like to fall back occasionally on an all-inclusive package holiday, when I don’t have to make any difficult decisions other than what cocktail to drink or which bikini to wear.  Even when we organise our own travels – which we have done in Europe and in the States – we stay safe, focus on the must-see sights and largely remain in touristy areas.  If we do go off the beaten path, it’s usually because I’ve done a little research beforehand and I know where is “tourist-friendly”.

A recent infographic gave a very slanted view of the tourist and traveller debate.  The gist was this:

Do you:

Then you are a tourist.  Ah, sometimes I’m a tourist then.

Or do you:

Then you are a traveller. Ah, sometimes I’m a traveller then.  See how hard it is define?  I like to sleep in a comfy hotel with running water and electricity, but that’s a relief after spending the day outdoors.  I like to make plans and do research, but not to the point where I’m inflexible.  And yes, I like to take selfies (not with a selfie stick though…) but that’s cos Mr Fletche takes all the beautiful professional-level shots, and someone needs to capture us being silly in front of the Atomium or the Golden Gate Bridge with a point-and-click.

I wish I could travel more.  I wish I could abandon family and financial responsibilities, sell my house and car and see the world without stopping.  But until then, I will remain a sometimes traveller, sometimes tourist, but full time travel dreamer.

Are you a tourist or a traveller?  Or are you, like me, a bit of both?


14 responses to “Traveller? Tourist? Or a bit of both?”

  1. […] blogs, so you can find Boston, Budapest and Salzburg in January.  I also pondered whether I was A Traveller or a Tourist (and concluded I was a bit of both), took a lighthearted look at my Recurring Travel Habits and […]

  2. I really don’t like the label of either one. Whatever you are doing, you got out of your routine and saw something new. It’s like reading. If you are reading a magazine, you are still reading. You don’t have to be reading the classics!

  3. josypheen says:

    I’m the same. Sometimes I’m a tourist, sometimes I’m a traveller and a few times I have moved abroad (so i am not even sure what that counts as!? an intergrater!?)

    I think your flexible approach sounds best. 😀

  4. I like to think a traveller is one who connects with the locals and the culture more and stays longer in one place a slow traveller and a tourist is more a sees the better parts, a fast mover and also concentrates on seeing the highlights of a country?

    • emfletche says:

      That’s a great definition; sometimes I think it’s more about the mindset than where you go or what you see 🙂

      • Yes, you have certainly got me thinking. Some people believe if you have not visited India you have not travelled at all! I have not been to India, obviously the person who said it, had been. 🙂

        • emfletche says:

          I think it’s almost used to infer superiority…”oh you haven’t backpacked across Asia? Then you can’t possibly be a traveller…” If I ever backpacked across Asia (highly unlikely) then I’d do it with a selfie stick and wearing an “I Heart Asia” hoodie 😀

          • I am now laughing LOL Gawd I will not own a selfie stick just out of principle. Not to mention the tacky hoodie. Hey, each to their own, though it can be fun to stir things up now and again 🙂 Yes, long gone are the days of uncomfortable beds and other things that live in them 🙂

          • emfletche says:

            What about Mickey Mouse ears Suzanne? Please tell me I can still wear Mickey Mouse ears 😀

  5. Ruth Daly says:

    Definitely a bit of both! It’s hard to choose one over the other because each has its advantages 🙂

  6. You can wear them, just 5 steps behind me LOL 🙂 Thanks for the laugh 🙂 x

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