Travelling means letting your hair down… and sometimes your pants, too. But, whether you’ve heard it from your best bud or an awkward movie, there are heaps of weird and wonderful adult travel myths out there ready to put a kink in your think. Here, we bust several of the most common 18+ travel myths. Oh and uh… adult themes ahead.
EVERYONE HOOKS UP WHILE TRAVELLING
Myth… sort of.
Your friends may fawn over all those saucy hook-up stories they heard happened to that chick you sat next to in maths class, but the reality of it is that most people don’t hook-up any more while traveling than what they would do at home. The keyword being ‘most’. To some, the traveling hook-up culture has a neat appeal: meeting lots of new people over a short period of time, being the cultured foreigner, knowing that you’ll never see that person again… But, if that’s not for you, then no one will give you smack for it. In the big, wide world of adulting, it’s each to their own.
WHEN IN ROME… YOU MUST DO AS THE ROMANS DO
The biggest issue with travelling is that when you’re abroad, you can often feel pressured into doing more hazardous things. Like smoking weed (aka marijuana) in Amsterdam. Or doing a bull run in Pamplona. Or even bungee jumping in New Zealand. Keep in mind that it’s okay to not do these things – whether for the sake of your family, your health or your wallet (yup, we went there).
If you’re faced with the looming task of confronting peer pressure about it, then let your friends know this isn’t your cup of tea. Give them a stern “no” followed with a positive statement. (Think: “No thanks, but I’ll video your courage act of swimming with those sharks!”). If all else fails, and if it’s safe to do so, remove yourself from the pressure zone. Often just a few minutes separated from your friends allows you the time to breathe and think without distractions.
If you DO wish to engage in more heart-racing activities than what you’d be privy to at home, make sure you are covered by travel insurance. That way, in the unlikely scenario that something goes amiss, you’ll be as right as rain!
TRAVEL EQUALS A FREE PASS
While most of us would cringe at the thought of cheating on our partner while studying abroad, for some it’s a real-life chance to trial the other fish in the sea (err, if you know what I mean). And while several of these peeps have their partner’s permission, the clear majority don’t. Instead, they go off the idea that travelling equals a free pass… ‘cause when the cats away, the mouse (or privates) come out to play.
The problem with assuming travel equals a free pass is it can often come back to haunt you. Few like to find out that the person they’ve just hooked up with has a partner back home. And once that person has found out, word tends to spread. Relationships you’ve built up with friends can fall apart – not to mention the person you’re cheating on can be greatly affected, too.
If you want to hook-up with people outside of your relationship while travelling overseas, then discuss the matter with your partner. Show them that you’re a responsible adult who would like the option to get physical overseas, despite being head-over-heels in love with them. How, you ask? Sit them down and raise the topic. Suggest rules to the “free pass” (like cutting off all action below the waist) and make sure you emphasise that you’ll respect their decision, no matter what it may be. Then, give them time to consider it.
CONTRACEPTIONS ARE EASILY ACCESSIBLE OVERSEAS
A visit to the pharmacist to pick out some condoms might not be at the top of your to-do list, but it might just save you some grief overseas. Cause it turns out while most western countries stock these happy hats in all sorts of convenient places (like in public toilets), there are a ton of other countries that don’t – like most African countries, for example. There, condoms can be hard to get your mits on thanks to long-running socio-political factors. And condoms aren’t the only ones you might struggle to get. A number of western countries require a prescription for birth control pills, including Australia, France, the United States and the United Kingdom (gulp!).
YOU’RE LEGAL HERE SO YOU’RE LEGAL THERE
This should come as a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how often this little titbit of information is forgotten. Forgotten, that is, until you flash your ID at the barista in the pub along with your award-winning smile… and he refuses service. Talk about awkward. To save yourself the walk of shame, make sure you check what the legal drinking age is in the countries you’re travelling to before you depart.
ANY FORM OF ID WILL DO
Well, no. This might come as a surprise, but each country – and even the states of those countries (hello, the United States) – will have their own specific form of identification laws. Some countries might just need you to whip out your driver’s licence or student card, while others might refuse service if you’re an overseas citizen carrying anything other than a passport (ahem… Australia). Be sure you check what the go is and have the right one on hand before you head out for a night on the town!