Skip Navigation

I'm writing an article about backpacking..... Please comment

Travel Forums General Talk I'm writing an article about backpacking..... Please comment

1. Posted by beckyxe (Budding Member 19 posts) 6y

Hello all,

I am currently in the process of writing an article based on parents reactions to their offspring backpacking around the world. The main point being... Do they need to worry so much?

Of course they do I hear you cry... any parent who didn't worry would need a stern talking to. But overall, it seems there is a total lack of awareness for some parents of what backpacking actually involves. Most of it from the media...

I would like you guys to tell me what YOUR parents said when you told them the news...

Tell me what there reservations where, what were they most afraid of...

And did any of your parents actually STOP you from going...

And to the older people here who may be ardent travellers and now have offspring of your own, what is/will be your reaction to your 18 year old jetting off for a 6 month trek round Asia?

Any opinions appreciated :)

I myself am 24, spent a year in Asia and Australia from 2008/2009. And am planning a two year round the world trip for late next year. Mostly overland.... we hope!

2. Posted by jambo101 (Respected Member 414 posts) 6y

My daughter is doing a 2 month walkabout in Asia this summer and i'm happy she's doing it as every one needs adventure in their life,My personal walkabout lasted 3 years way back when i was her age.However as her parent and therefore the person who has protected her through life up to this point its hard to let go as my imagination can conjure up so many hypothetical problems she could run into andfor the first time in her life theres not much i can do to help her out of any problems she gets into, guess its a feeling you can only experience when you have kids of your own and they take that first big step out of the nest to soar on their own wings.

[ Edit: Edited on 20-Mar-2010, at 03:17 by jambo101 ]

3. Posted by fabyomama (Respected Member 560 posts) 6y

Traveling for extended periods is a luxury only a tiny minority of parents can afford for their children. I would assume, if they are paying for it, then they go with their blessing? An alternative for many who want to see the world is joining the forces where the parental worry is far greater, but where the decision lies solely with the child. Just my thoughts.

[ Edit: Edited on 20-Mar-2010, at 04:19 by fabyomama ]

4. Posted by beckyxe (Budding Member 19 posts) 6y

fabyomama - I'm not saying you are wrong. But i do believe this is another misconception about the type of people who go travelling.

I have not come across many people who have had their trips paid for by their parents. I certainly didn't. And the 8 people I was travelling with didn't either.
Our idea of backpacking came from stories of inspiration from older people we met when we were growing up who told us about getting several jobs, and working all the hours god send in order to save up. I was always under the impression that this part of the adventure.
I worked incredibly hard to go travelling, and didn't rely on any financial help from my parents.

I think it's actually the minority nowadays that has their trip handed to them on plate.

But then that comes back to my question, if a parent is willing to pay for them to go, then as you say, they are not fearful for them going. But when young uns, like i was, decide to get a job, scrimp and save, the option is taken away from the parents and is then forced on them..... what parent would say no?

5. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 875 posts) 6y

Quoting fabyomama

Traveling for extended periods is a luxury only a tiny minority of parents can afford for their children. I would assume, if they are paying for it, then they go with their blessing? An alternative for many who want to see the world is joining the forces where the parental worry is far greater, but where the decision lies solely with the child. Just my thoughts.

Not always true. I was 18 and had about 100 pounds to my name when I told my parents in the UK that I was packing a backpack to go see my brother in america for a 2 week holiday. I had no intention of coming back, but I didnt want to worry them. That was 28 years ago, and I don't think i've spend more than 18 months in the UK since then. My Dad left for NZ when he was 16, so i think he understood. My mother to this day still asks when Im going to stop all this larking around and come home. A year after I left, my Grandmother on my Dads side sent me a wonderful letter just before she died, telling me I was doing the best thing ever and to keep going and see the world.

When I left I remember being at Heathrow and watching Americans dumping out their British money at the currency exchange to change back into dollars and thinking, "christ they have more change than I have travel money" An English guy befriended me and walked me up to the check in counter where he got us seats together at the back of the plane so he could smoke! yeah it was that long ago! Turns out he was some famous guy from a band called the Animals!

6. Posted by fabyomama (Respected Member 560 posts) 6y

At the risk of getting another reaction it would be interesting to know how many travelers who worked to save up are living at home for free, or at least very cheaply? This is often something just not possible in many poorer households and as good as money in the bank for those who can. No shame in it though, so please don't take it personally. And would that beg the question that extended world travel is largely a pastime for better off families?

Interested to know what the article for? Hope you don't mind me asking, but you didn't say.

7. Posted by fabyomama (Respected Member 560 posts) 6y

Dodger - Not always true, but your story especially is very rare. Sounds a good one too. ;)

8. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 875 posts) 6y

Quoting fabyomama

Dodger - Not always true, but your story especially is very rare. Sounds a good one too. ;)

Not that rare my friend. I constantly meet young people, traveling on the opposite side of the globe from where they live, that are down to their last hundred dollars or so, but holding out to find some job to get them by. In the old days back in the eighties, that's how I was traveling and you'd be amazed at the opportunity's you can create when you really need to.

I think a benefit of being young, is you do some crazy shit without thinking and sometimes that's what it takes. If you think too much you'll never do anything.

9. Posted by fabyomama (Respected Member 560 posts) 6y

Quoting Dodger

...I think a benefit of being young, is you do some crazy shit without thinking...

Don't need to be young for that. There's flashbacks, mid-life crisis, Alzheimer's. ;)