Dealing with Hate When Traveling

Travelers often present the glamorous side of traveling. They offer a glimpse into awesome experiences like sipping champagne on a yacht as they watch the sun go down.

Of course, travelers write about their experiences to inspire others and they don’t want to put them. However, some bad experiences inevitably happen while traveling and being prepared to deal with them is important.

Problems you may experience while traveling

While traveling, you are outside of your comfort zones and at your most vulnerable. When you are laden with luggage and stressed about trying to catch a train or find a taxi, you can easily become a potential target for unscrupulous individuals.

In many places in the world where locals are poverty-stricken, you will be subjected to all kinds of scams and tactics to get money out of you. At worst, you may be mugged and have all your travel documents stolen.

When you get on the wrong side of officials in a foreign country, you can find yourself in a very sticky situation. If you suffer any harassment or abuse, you should not be afraid to report it.

What to do when things go wrong

When you’re traveling, especially if you’re in a foreign country, it’s difficult to know what to do when things go wrong.

Regroup

If something bad happens to you, the worst thing you can do is to panic. You need to regroup, take some deep breaths, assess the seriousness of the situation and decide what you need to do next.

Decide on your first steps

Where do you go if you want to file a police report? Is there a tourism office where you can get advice? Sitting in a café with Wi-Fi and doing some research on your mobile phone or laptop will calm you down and help you to find the necessary information. Do you need to cancel credit cards? Do you need to contact your insurance company?

If you’ve experienced something serious like police brutality, you will need to find an attorney to help you. Some police officers enjoy having a sense of power and will violate the rights of others just because they can.

Decide on your next course of action

When you experience bad things while traveling, you may have to adjust your travel plans. It’s helpful to make a list of what you need to do before making a decision to change your plans.

In most situations, you don’t have to let a bad event spoil your whole trip. Do what you have to do to address the situation and then move on. If you lose your luggage or miss a flight, it shouldn’t affect your enjoyment of the rest of your trip. However, if what happens is more serious than that and you’ve suffered actual physical harm, you will have to report it to the police and you are likely to have to change your plans.

Be prepared in advance

It helps to take certain preventative measures before you even leave for your trip. Keep an electronic copy of your passport, find out about common scams and areas to avoid, and keep important contact information on hand.

Final word

Whether you’re at home or traveling, you will have negative experiences. What makes them more difficult when traveling is that you are outside of your comfort zones. Travel is usually a wonderful experience and you should never avoid it because of the negative things that could happen to you. Prepare yourself as much as possible, avoid taking unnecessary risks and you will be able to enjoy your travels without worrying.

About the Author
Rachel Brenner is a Professor of Jewish Studies. Her research focuses on Jewish Literature and has published dozens of scholarly articles and book chapters.
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