As a personal policy of sorts, I try not to dwell on regrets. I just don’t think it’s healthy nor do I think it’s productive, and I like to live (or at least strive to live) a healthy and productive life. So regrets aren’t something I think about regularly.
That said, I do think about regrets once in awhile, but mostly in the context of asking myself, “What would I regret more - doing something or not doing something?” Often times that gives me the push I need to do something and not chicken out. The reason I ask myself that question is because I didn’t always do that, and I would sometimes let fear or ambivalence or straight laziness rule my decision making, and I regret that.
And then there are the situations in which I needed to ask myself another question: “Is this a good idea?” Answer: Probably not. All this to say I, like many others, have regrets in life, but for the purpose of this blog, I’m going to focus on some of my travel-related regrets, which honestly aren’t that many. But, here they are in no particular order:
1. Not studying abroad even more in college
Mind you, I studied abroad not once but twice in college, but I genuinely wished I had studied abroad even more because I LOVED my study abroad experiences. I spent the spring semester of my junior year in Accra, Ghana, followed by the summer between my junior and senior years in Paris, France. Both were amazing, and if I could have had more time, I would have studied abroad at least another semester or two.
2. Not trying harder to stay in London longer
I go back and forth on whether I truly regret this, but I think I do. After my year in London for grad school, I stayed an extra two months to try and see if I could find a job in the UK. But, to be honest, the opportunities I was coming across were dismal, and I had just added to the amount of student loans under my name. I knew I had to be practical and go where I had the opportunity to, quite frankly, make a better living. That said, I do wonder if I had been more aggressive or stayed longer, would I have been able to find something? Because now I'd love to go back to work in London, but that goal is more difficult to pursue than it was when I was living there.
3. Being too cheap to buy what I wanted (within reason)
I'll always remember I saw this beautiful blanket in Morocco that I absolutely loved during my visit there. And so I tried to bargain, but the man selling the blanket would not go as low as he wanted me to (which was pretty low because I was feeling stingy). I got so caught up in the bargaining part of it, and the fact that he wasn't going as low as I'd like, that I forgot how much I wanted the blanket and figured I would get it for a better price elsewhere later on in the trip. Well, I never saw anything like it again, and I wish I had just gotten it :::shakes head at own self:::
4. Sacrificing convenience and/or safety for cost savings
I'm sensing a money-related theme here. Anyway, it's true. In my 20s, I would plan a trip and think to myself, Oh no, it doesn't matter that my flight lands at 11:30 at night. I'm not taking a taxi, I'll find a bus. Yeah, that's not a good idea. I remember during my first visit to London, I got on the night bus thinking I knew how to make my way back to where I was staying and it was a much cheaper option than taking a black cab. Well, turns out I had no idea where I was going and it was verrry late. Fortunately, the warning bells in my head kicked in and basically said to me: "Tausha, don't be a fool. Get off the night bus, spend the money on the cab and get your butt home." And so I did.
5. Not traveling even more in my 20s
It's greedy, I know, because I did a lot of traveling in my 20s. And I'm doing even more traveling in my 30s, but I do regret not traveling even more in my 20s. They're your more carefree days when you have less responsibilities and can be more impulsive, though I've never been a particularly impulsive person. My practical, planning tendencies always find a way to prevail, but I do sometimes wish I had ventured out even more a decade ago and met more people along the way. Regardless, I'm always grateful for everything I've had the opportunity to experience so far.
Do you have any travel regrets?