Discover How You Can Travel Like a Local
It is like a motto for travellers nowadays that do what the locals do. Travelling is all about getting outside your comfort zone, testing yourself and engage in a local culture that is different from your own. Therefore, if all you intend to do on your next international trip is move as a group with other foreigners and stick to eating junk foods, you are missing out. Next time you travel abroad, step off the beaten path and use your time living like a local. Here is how you can travel like a local.
Escape from the isolated planet. When you depend on a guidebook for your local travel, it only sends a message that you do not know what you are doing, and this also compels you to go to places where everyone else is. You need to inquire from the locals about their best restaurants, parks and clubs. You can try a mixture of high society and down-home alternatives for you to comprehend class dynamics. If you like the idea, you can as well create your guide book.
Make sure you try the local food. Local dishes might seem intimidating; however, if you try out something that you do not like, you will have a story to tell. Find out from the locals about their favorite restaurants, market stores and dishes. Make sure you try at least one of them. Oftentimes, local cuisine will be better than any western food found in the market. Aside from that, local food is also cheaper. Additionally, irrespective of how much you miss food from your motherland, it will never be the same abroad.
Travelling like a local means that you use local transport. As opposed to the usual mass tourist transit, you can ask around the best local way to travel. It could be using a motorbike, maxi taxi or subway, among others. When you have your transport, this not only enables you to explore the local life but also prevents you from dealing with hawkers and unscrupulous guides that may try to defraud you. You might be afraid to move around on your own, but are you will overcome this within time.
Show respect to the local culture. Make sure you learn the customs and cultures of the places that you are travelling to before you go. Religions, beliefs and traditions vary in different countries. It is also worth noting that economic status varies across the globe. Do not stare if another person’s situation appears to be bad according to your standards. Most people are proud of what they have, and they do not need your pity.
Look for ways that you can connect. You can initiate friendships with locals, similar to how you would have done it at home by showing interest in people and their lives. You can find out the things that are dear to them, i.e. their family, faith, food, and what they do during their free time. You also need to be ready to answer this question when it is your turn. What is it that you can share with them from your culture?