Facing Our Travel Fears

facing travel fears in a balloon above water night

OK. We’re getting excited. But, there are some travel fears. And in all honesty, fears that I’m excited to explore and conquer, but fears and questions none the less. In no particular order, here are the random fears floating through our heads as we start planning our long-term travel adventures.. and this is just what we’ve thought of so far! This is by no means an exhaustive list. 😉


  • Health insurance – is travelers insurance good? (I hear it is) We need to research the most practical options.
  • What if we get sick or hurt? Having insurance will help, but we have no idea what to expect in another country. What if we can’t communicate what is wrong?
  • Contacts – how am I going to replace my contacts while traveling? Will my subscription be easy to fill overseas?
  • Visas – What will we need for what country? And how easy will they be to get as we need them? Europe has a 3 month tourist visa, but what if we want to stay longer?  (and we most likely will.. post coming about that development!)
  • Vaccines – Some countries require them to enter and you have to show proof that you have them. Sometimes you even need to show proof that they were done up to 6 months in advance.
  • Lodging – While we plan to stay in free or reduced rate places, like house sitting, volunteering, hostels, or AirBnB, what if it doesn’t work out?  What if we agree to a long-term house sit, and it’s nothing like we were told, but we’re still stuck there for a month?
  • Packing – What all do we really need?  What can we do without?
  • Storing Stuff– We may need to lighten our packs for a time, can we find a place to store our surplus belongings?
  • Travel Logistics – Should we get an around the world ticket to cover our air travel? Or should we just play it by ear to keep our travel direction more open?
  • Staying connected.. and Football – OK this is lower on the “concerns” list, but still something we want to figure out. If we can’t get ESPN or NFL websites, can we set up a VPN to access our favorite websites in areas that restrict them.
  • FOMO – Or Fear of Missing Out. As excited as we are for this adventure, there is also the knowledge that we will be missing out on some pretty big life events for our friends and family. And that just sucks.
  • And I’m just going to put this one out there.. driving on the opposite side of the road! I’ve managed to avoid it in all my travels, but I know that driving will open up so many opportunities. It still terrifies me.

While we are tackling each of these fears, we are open to any solutions you may have found! Any resources, tips, guides, magic stones, please feel free to send our way!


What fears have you overcome for travel?


  • We got travel insurance and already got our money out in less than 5 months: Brecht got dengue fever and was in the hospital for 5 days in Vietnam (although there was a language barrier, he survived), I broke a piece of my tooth and needed a filling in Australia.
    Definitely pack a scarf (doubles as blanket for cold nights or cold public transport) and sarong (doubles as blanket and dress), or buy a cheap one when you’re starting your travels in SE Asia. Don’t pack to much! You need less than you think.
    We always buy a local SIM card to stay connected at all times, but most accommodations we’ve stayed at had decent WiFi as well. Except for camping sites in Australia.
    I have a serious case of FOMO, Brecht not so much. I’m for example missing out on a lot of babies being born, but honestly, it’s not as hard as I thought. Thanks to this wonderful thing called “the internet”, I stay in touch (sometimes daily) through Facebook and Skype. The babies will be just a little older babies when we return home.
    We’ve been driving on the wrong side of the road for a couple of weeks now, in Australia. It’s not as hard as we thought, we only start the windshield wiper (is that the correct English word?) instead of the turn signal, because that’s on the wrong side as well… Oh, and we have a campervan with automatic gear of course, because that would be hell to do with our left instead of right hand.

    • Danielle says:

      Hi Birthe! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences! 5 days in the hospital sounds terrifying in another country with a language barrier. So happy to hear it worked out OK! A campervan to drive around Australia sound so amazing. Excited to follow your adventures!

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