Budget travelers will often choose third world countries as their destinations because of the radically different experiences they offer and the lower costs involved. It will be useful for the new traveler to take these suggestions into consideration:
1. Don’t always try to spend the least amount of money
Even if you are traveling on a low budget, it can be quite aggravating to obsess about saving every dime and penny. Not only is it a perfect way to take the fun out of your travel experience it also is a great way to demean the locals.
We’re not suggesting that you fall prey to tourist price traps or never negotiate for deals. Instead, recognize that arguing over a price difference that means little in your home currency is not often worth it. You can hold your own in good humor when faced with unscrupulous behaviors from vendors.
It feels good to pay the full price in appropriate circumstances (such as encouraging a local economy not run by multinationals).
2. Don’t show off your fortunes
Clothes and bags tell a lot about a traveler. In third world countries where large segments of the population are poor or very poor, even your less than best clothes may make you appear rich.
Lessen the gap between you and others by wearing modest clothes and carrying average bags. It will make you less intimidating to locals, less of a target for robbers and you will feel much less ridiculous.
3. Learn how to deal constructively with the poor
While it may be appropriate in some circumstances to not give so much as a glance to swarms of begging people it will significantly improve the quality of your travel if you do offer yourself the chance to connect to people in need.
It does not necessarily mean that you should offer money directly to those you encounter. But consider making a donation to a local charity or organism that works with them This money will most likely be used in a more constructive manner than if you give it directly to beggars. If you have no money to spare, volunteering with such organisms can be just as valuable.
To the people you meet directly in the street, you can offer some of your time. Talk to them, ask them questions, exchange words in your respective languages, play with kids, play with your camera, share a meal with them… there are many ways to have a positive exchange.
Tom Pattingson is interested in budget and free travel opportunities. He writes for his travel for free blog where you can find lots of free travel info.
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