Seriously! This pandemic has been raging for so long that my wanderlust withdrawal symptoms have become second nature to my existence. Relatable? If you fancy yourself a travel addict in the same sense as I do, then the answer is an unequivocal yes. After earning more than 20 passport stamps in one year to zero in the last year and a half stings something fierce. What’s my secret to coping with this withdrawal? Allow me to share with you a few tricks on how to survive a pandemic as a travel addict.
As an adventure travel blogger, this past year was brutal on my wanderlust. From continent hopping to watching old youtube videos of my travels was sad – for lack of a better descriptive word. I only doddle momentarily, however, as finding the positives in situations is also second nature to me.
Here are a few suggestions for managing your travel downtime instead.
Get creative with your travel addiction
When withdrawal and restlessness set in, reminding ourselves that adventure is all around us can be easier said than done. But it’s the purest reality there is. Especially living through a pandemic where nothing is certain. Even going to the supermarket some days was an adventure in itself, am I right?
Try managing your wanderlust by doing the following travel-based activities:
- Watch YouTube vlogs: Study up on travel destinations that ignite joy when it comes to mind. Dig deep into the cultural aspects of the destination, learn as many details as possible about logistics, strategic routes, community-based businesses in addition to the sites and restaurants that are popular in that destination.
- Attempt a new language: Try downloading Duo Lingo, a language learning application, and learn a few key phrases in the language of the country on the top of the ever-growing “when-this-is-all-over” list.
- Game on: Create or purchase more than a few wanderlust-based activities like world map scratch-offs, coloring books of world flags, or even puzzles with a global theme.
If those suggestions don’t motivate you, try this.
Reminisce & reconnect
Although looking at your blissed-out face in an old travel photograph may stir more unsettling emotions, I encourage you to do it anyway. It’s a tangible reminder of your privilege and refortifies the true reasons behind the desire to travel. It can serve as a light in the darkest days of wanderlust withdrawal knowing that one-day tourism will be back stronger than ever.
Remembering the moments that bonded relationships during travel can also warm the icy chill of extended border closures. But more importantly, it can inspire connection. Reach out to that travel buddy you exchanged Instagram handles with and check in on how they’re coping. Rekindle that connection by sharing the memories of that trip together. Heck, loop them in on the new travel bucket list, too.
The friendships I’ve been fortunate enough to make (and keep) over the last handful of adventurous years reminds me just how interconnected the love of travel is worldwide, and how profound the travel community can be.
Embrace the slowdown
The break from consistently being on-the-go has not been all bad. For example, self-care routines have seen a huge uptick as have simple actions such as dining in. People have gotten excited about all of the material objects long forgotten in the hallway closet or in discovering/creating a new recipe to share with friends/family. There’s more time available to the majority of us for almost anything: reading, painting, crafting, you name it.
Personally, I created an entire daily self-care routine and as long as I executed them during the day, I was more than satisfied with my accomplishments. Often I would be jazzed simply by the compilation of an epically layered veggie sandwich (don’t judge me, I had A LOT of time on my hands).
For those of us currently living abroad during the pandemic, adopting a slow traveling mentality can be another useful tool for how to survive a pandemic as a travel addict. Exploring new avenues within the neighborhood, getting lost on purpose, even picnicking solo are all healthy behaviors to adopt during a pandemic. For those in countries that grant mobility, try exploring a neighboring town to seek adventure. Remember supporting local businesses supports sustainable tourism.
Now that you have a blueprint of a survival guide for your wanderlust, what are you waiting for? Get creative with this downtime and find inspiration in the simplest of activities or places directly around you. Be grateful for what and who is in your life by remembering what’s important; relationships. Embracing the immediate surroundings and supporting local businesses can provide respite during this ongoing pandemic in unforeseen ways.
Now that you know how to survive a pandemic as a travel addict, don’t forget to apply these methods to what’s left of these uncertain times. Don’t worry, you can thank me later for the tips and tricks. In the meantime, save and support that wanderlust; the time for travel approaches.