Travel fears and scares

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

What scares you when you travel they asked? It would have been easier to ask what doesn’t…

But that wouldn’t make much of a blog post!

Most things can worry or scare me! At home I hate the dark and being home alone. I sail yet I hate the water!  I hate walking into a room when I might not know anyone! Oh, and I’m terrified of cows and live next door to a field of them!

And then when we travel…. So much potential.  But – I’m still here, travelling, and getting braver where I visit!

Getting a rubbish seat: thank goodness for tier status and picking a seat early that isn’t in the middle… And flying upper deck business, which is a peaceful domain. I’m not so happy when the plane changes and the seats change. The worst is the middle seat with arm rest hoggers on either side. I have pointy elbows, be warned, I always win! Although the time I went to Tallinn and sat in the middle of a stag party will definitely stick in the memory…

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Missing the plane: it almost happened once, it was a flex ticket so thankfully I was able to change it. A quick call to my booker and I was on the next flight to DC! Getting to the airport early isn’t so bad with lounge access. But the amount of times (work and pleasure) when I’ve been last on either engrossed in work or in the fizz is embarrassing!…

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Falling out the sky: let’s face it with the number of nutters out there it’s a risk! Best not to dwell.

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Lost luggage: it’s never happened and I always carry a change of clothes in my hand luggage. But it would be a pain in the derrière. Sometimes things have gone missing from hold luggage and it doesn’t seem possible to claim for it. I dread to think how hard it is to prove what was in a bag that goes missing entirely? Hand luggage only on a business trip, that’s what the laundry service is for.

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Booking the hire car for the wrong day: not so far and there always seem to be  plenty of spares. But I bet they charge an arm and a leg for a last minute booking! The fact we didn’t have a MasterCard World card in Jamaica and had to pay extra insurance still stings! Fortunately our fancy account comes with one of these cards!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Booking the hotel on the wrong day: this only happens at work, which is so frustrating! I get my flights booked with my hotel and somehow they come with different dates… I still laugh about the time my EA got special permission for me to fly to Hyderabad in Pakistan… When I needed to be in India! That would have been interesting! Thankfully the right destination was on the new 787 !

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

The hotel: because finding an unbiased review is so hard these days! There’s something called unconscious bias that is all too common… And when stuff is free, a person is biased. Fact. Real service and experience comes when you aren’t the awaited guest ? Those are the essential reviews needed to find some cracking hidden gems. That and a fair bit of review-wariness!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

FOMO: not really a fear but the wretched ‘gram does not help. What if we miss that one spot that you have to get a photo at?.. No bother.  Case in point – a hidden beach in Cornwall known through family local knowledge is always going to be the most blissful and beautiful one. And really, who wants to visit the obvious! Same applies elsewhere – we put our walking boots or running shoes on, enjoy the scenery and having no itinerary or checklist! Enjoy the views first, photos second!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Meeting scary animals: more specifically snakes. I can’t stand them. Too scared to even look at a photo. We met one on our honeymoon safari, a green mamba much to my terror. He tried to get into our thathed cottage. Not going on a safari again! The pool was nice, as was the food and the safari… But the snake, not so much!!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Getting on a tram going the wrong way: in fact I worry sometimes even on the plane, that I got the wrong one! But that isn’t really possible.  On trams, trains and buses it is.  As is forgetting to validate the ticket… What is it about Europe that means they require validated tickets?! I had to get off the tram after one stop in Amsterdam on my first morning – they don’t take €50 notes or card… Thankfully Uber is easy!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Getting lost with no 3G: we almost didn’t find a prehistoric fossil forest in Greece because of patchy 3G. I had an ‘inspired’ idea to navigate from google maps in the boonies! At least 3G is free in Europe now, never again will we have a scenic night time drive ‘winging it.’ It was never even expensive so don’t ask me why we drove through Kingston in Jamaica at night with this approach!!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Being ill: the first time I went to India I did as my colleagues and ate Imodium with all food. I wasn’t ill, but didn’t feel good! The second time I was just very careful, simples! Rogue dairy is my main challenge… The good, when the chef takes the food away from me just in case… To the bad, when I am told there’s just a little cheese in the ricotta based dairy free option! Then there’s ending up in hospital ill during a trip to Ireland, a lifetime low.

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

Lack of toilets: I am not fond of squatting to spend a penny. The last time was near the top of Scafell when I HAD TO GO… I picked the moment when the summit suddenly was as busy as the M25 of course. Now I always regulate my drinks and carry spare tissues… And hope to goodness the loo isn’t a hole in the floor… Like it was in Oman (fair enough and it was roadside and not in the Chedi). And Como (where quite frankly I expected better!)

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

And obviously, I worry that our home will get burgled! I always worry that we’ll turn into the driveway and see it smashed to pieces, even though the alarm system would already have told us!

But why worry, even if something does go wrong, travel is such a blessing! And always better than the holiday blues!

Travel fears and scares - Travel with Penelope & Parker

And don’t even get me started on the weather… Thankfully us Brits are hardy and take waterproofs and umbrellas! And enjoy things like the ‘uniqueness’ of seeing the Taj Mahal in a thick fog!

With all that to worry about it’s a wonder I ever go anywhere, especially alone, and that I relax so quickly.  But I think if there wasn’t an element of excitement in a trip then it wouldn’t be fun.

Best thing I learnt from my coach? The hormone for nervous and excited is the same – that’s what I remind myself when I have a big day at work and it’s worth remembering whenever you have a fear!

Link up your post

This month we are sharing our travel fears and scares – this could be anything from missing flights to a plane engine switching off mid-air to catching a tropical disease etc… Just pop your post up over the first week of the month (the 1st – 7th August 2017), add it to the link up widget found on SilverSpoon LondonFollow Your SunshineAdventures of a London Kiwi or on the blog of our lovely guest host Maggie at Planes & Champagne from the 1st.  As ever there are no real rules – basically all we ask is that you check out some of the other cool bloggers that are involved in the months travel link up; tweet a few of the posts out to your followers that you think they will love and make a few comments here and there. It really is a great way to meet some new travel bloggers and share some blogging joy!

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  1. August 1, 2017 / 8:40 am

    Ooh you had me on the snakes….I can’t stand those slithery things! And the more I read about it, the more FOMO is real! Great post! #travellinkup

    • August 1, 2017 / 8:49 am

      I now live in the countryside and have a great worry of they or slow worms…

  2. August 1, 2017 / 9:20 am

    Green Mamba???? Eeeek I saw a yellow snake of sorts in the bathroom in Namibia when I was volunteering with wildlife, but that was enough for me!
    Ngaire recently posted…Travel Fears and ScaresMy Profile

    • August 1, 2017 / 9:22 am

      In the bathroom… Yikes, at least ours only got as far as stuck in the roof!

    • August 1, 2017 / 1:28 pm

      It’s a wonder we get on planes, must be the fizz!

  3. August 1, 2017 / 11:52 am

    Aaaall of these scare me too! There’s a healthy mix of real scares and first world problems here. Of all of them, the t word (which starts with ‘error’ and ends with ‘ists’) has got to be my biggest fear!

    Polly xx

    • August 1, 2017 / 1:32 pm

      And that was the one I didn’t dare write about! I walk across a bridge in London twice a day, have decided to ignore it (and walk fast)

  4. August 1, 2017 / 5:58 pm

    I share so many of these travel same fears, but thankfully don’t worry enough about them to let it stop me. Travel is such a blessing and I really do believe that everything happens for a reason, be it good or not-so-great.

    Kate |

    • August 1, 2017 / 7:19 pm

      Agreed, if we let stuff worry us we would never leave the house in the current world we live in

    • August 1, 2017 / 7:56 pm

      A well organised traveller by the sound of it!!

    • August 2, 2017 / 8:51 am

      It is a wonder we manage to leave our homes ??

    • August 2, 2017 / 8:52 am

      Look forward to reading yours, my train plans tomorrow night on the way home, I put it in the diary!!

  5. August 3, 2017 / 4:31 pm

    The number one thing that has always scared me on my travels is cockroaches. I will do anything to avoid them and my friends are the same way, so I will read all the reviews of places to make sure that no roaches have been sighted before I book!
    Jaillan Yehia recently posted…4 of The Best Places To Buy Avarcas In MenorcaMy Profile

    • August 3, 2017 / 5:38 pm

      Oh goodness, that isn’t something I had even thought of before… Doesn’t lavender scare them, or is that an old wives tale?!

  6. August 4, 2017 / 9:22 am

    Yes to ALL of these, especially the train one! I remember being responsible for booking all the travel to Amsterdam and cologne with my family a couple years ago and fretting that I’d booked the wrong trains for the wrong times … and making sure we would get on the right ones too. My parents are not the most useful when it comes to solving problems while travelling (they’re used to travelling with guides to sort everything out for them) so everything fell to me and I felt such immense pressure. 🙁 Luckily, John stepped up to help with the navigation, but worrying about 4 peoples’ tickets was stressful!


    • August 4, 2017 / 10:47 am

      Sam is so much better than me at the old ‘travel on the continent’ thing, I don’t know why we can’t just use oyster or wave and pay everywhere! But google maps is now great for train instructions – it got me round Zurich and Amsterdam!

  7. August 5, 2017 / 8:43 pm

    A few of my travel fears in here too – though creature wise it’s always spiders that get me rather than snakes. Being ill is my biggest travel fear and I’m always slightly nervous eating out in case some rogue gluten’s crept in somewhere!
    Lucy recently posted…The first-timers guide to visiting the Cinque TerreMy Profile

    • August 5, 2017 / 9:06 pm

      I didn’t realise you were a gluten sufferer, it is so hard as rarely to people realise what a horror it is when it goes wrong

  8. August 6, 2017 / 4:19 pm

    I thought one of my biggest travel fears had come true when I reached the check in desk for a flight to Spain. I had been invited to Girona by Toyota to Instagram their new Prius Hybrid Plugin and was overjoyed at the prospect. When I pulled at my passport my heart started racing and my stomach did a back flip as I saw one corner was cut off. I’d brought my out of date passport. The minutes that followed turning out my bags were awful as I went into a blind panic. Thankfully I had my current passport too, made the flight and had a fabulous weekend. the only downside was having to give the car back at the end.
    Kathryn @BoutiqueTravelBlog recently posted…Where to find some of the best coffee in the worldMy Profile

    • August 6, 2017 / 8:37 pm

      Oh goodness, I always used to keep my old passports with my current one, this could so easily happen! Thank goodness you had both!!

    • August 7, 2017 / 12:30 am

      I was with Kathryn that day and I can vouch for those few panicky minutes…even MY stomach lurched slightly and I wasn’t the one at risk of missing their flight! It all turned out fine in the end though, as Kathryn says!

      • August 7, 2017 / 7:13 am

        I suspect you will check her passport on every trip now!

  9. August 7, 2017 / 12:36 am

    The one that resonates with me is the illness thing – having caught pneumonia in Irkutsk, Siberia a few years back, I know how worrying that can be. In my case, I had no phone I could use and my poor family were in a right state not knowing if I was even still alive! The other issue which I get nervous about, is dodgy officials – it’s sometimes tough to read a situation and work out if they’re allies or foes!
    Sara @ Travel Continuum recently posted…Summertime Bees and Blooms – A Wildflower Meadow in HampshireMy Profile

    • August 7, 2017 / 7:14 am

      No phone must have been tough. I haven’t really come across dodgy officials but I have heard stories, they seem to exist everywhere

  10. August 7, 2017 / 2:59 pm

    So many things to be scared of… but you keep going anyway and you should be so proud about that!! I am also scared of getting lost with no 3G, I always make sure to have maps downloaded just in case, even if I’m just in the UK!

    • August 7, 2017 / 9:25 pm

      Haha, we have the Crete map downloaded this week just in case!

  11. August 8, 2017 / 1:59 pm

    I nearly missed a flight this summer. One lot of roadworks set me back by 45 mins and then an accident on the M25 put another 50 minutes on my journey. I made the gate with 10 minutes to spare. That’s what worries me most about travelling – not being able to!

    • August 8, 2017 / 2:39 pm

      Ouch, that’s cutting it fine, so glad you made it on time!

  12. August 15, 2017 / 2:06 am

    I can relate to most of your fears, especially the snakes. The last flight I missed was a connection to India and what a nighmare it turned out to be. 3hours trying to get a bus at JFK to a nearby hotel for the night in a blizzard and my cute little ballet flats! It was an experience I never want to repeat.
    alison abbott recently posted…Coastal Stay 250 Main Hotel in Rockland MaineMy Profile

    • August 15, 2017 / 7:04 am

      I didn’t put weather on my list… But it causes so many issues, especially snow at airports when you want to get somewhere hot!

  13. August 18, 2017 / 5:03 pm

    Lots to worry about but yes – travel is a blessing and privilege overall! That said, I did genuinely nearly give myself a heart attack recently when I realised I was at the wrong gate and my flight was on final call… always a big concern!
    Jessi (Two Feet, One World) recently posted…Crocodiles & Canyons in Chiapas, MexicoMy Profile

    • August 18, 2017 / 5:26 pm

      That’s when you were hopefully dressed with trainers and a rucksack and made your flight with a hop and a skip!!

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