FAQ: After our RTW trip
Wondering what to pack, what things cost, or where to go and when? The answer may be on this page. If it’s not, we’d love to answer your question. Just ask your question in a comment below, and we’ll answer you on this page.
Don’t forget to check out the FAQ from before our RTW trip too.
- Where did you go on your round-the-world-trip?
- Aw, c’mon, you haven’t looked at any of the site, have you? Admit it! Go check out our nifty map and well-documented route.
- What was your favorite place?
- Asking us this question is like asking Carol Brady which of the bunch is her favorite. Everyone knows the answer is Greg.
- Ok, fine, forget favorite. Which place surprised you the most?
- That’s a better question. We were getting worried about you. You’re still not going to like our answer. Todd says it best: “There are so many places, such as Vietnam and China, that I didn’t know what to expect. It was all surprising. It was all new.”
- The job market’s terrible. Anything I can do to help you two travelers?
- All said and done, we fared ok after coming back into a recession job market. That said, Lauren’s a consultant so drop her a line if you know of a good project. If you want to contribute to our burrito fund, click on our ads and buy something, or buy some of Todd’s travel-inspired art or commission him to make art that shows your travels.
- Did you have culture shock when you came back?
- Culture shock wasn’t much of an issue — China and South Korea are both very modern, so we had access to almost whatever we wanted, and many things we didn’t want. So, we didn’t suffer the typical culture shock moment of the first walk though a mega mall, marveling at the selection and, perhaps, the gluttony. We did notice a few surprising things since our return:
- What did you do to our economy while we were gone? Jeez.
- Magazines and newspapers are anorexic versions of their former selves. It’s as if Adbusters took over the advertising industry.
- A lot of our friends broke up while we were gone — at least nine couples — and it’s changed the social dynamic at home in San Francisco.
- Our television is useless.
- After one too many non-export quality Laotian coffees, Lauren kicked her caffeine habit. Yet somehow, Todd became a frequent coffee drinker.
We now get overwhelmed after a few hours of socializing and need to be anti-social for a while. This is very, very unusual. We’ll get over it.We got over it.
- Even mainstream music in the U.S. is better than 95% of the music we heard on our trip.
- What did you miss the most from home?
- Before we left, we figured it would be cheese, burritos, our family, and our friends — not in that order. While we traveled, we hit a lot of homesickness walls. Of course, we missed our friends and family a lot. We didn’t expect to miss California wine, beer with flavor (you cannot imagine the monotony of Asian beer), classic rock music, savory beans (not that sweetened red beans aren’t the bomb diggity), sleeping late without guilt, and mustard, particularly a good grainy mustard or a tart Dijon.
- How did your apartment sublet work out?
- Perfectly. Our subletters took care of our place and our furnishings, and since our stuff was stored in the apartment, moving back in and unpacking was easy. So easy in fact, that we had our first overnight guests — a couple and their cute toddler — our second night back home. Yes, we have issues.
- What did your trip cost?
- Over the year, including all the clothes, books, and gadgets we needed, plus our on-the-road costs — like food, hotels, sites, and flights — cost about $40,000 for the both of us. We got mighty screwed by the falling dollar in Fall 2008 and the recession.
- How much did you spend per day in ________?
How much did you spend on food in _________?
- That really depends on how you like to travel, what kind of hotel you want to stay in, and where you want to eat. Unless we know these things, our advice will be off base. Just drop us a note with your trip details if you want our thoughts.
- After your round-the-world year, were you sick of traveling?
- We have no regrets about taking a year to travel, but it’s not a length of time we’d do for a second go. It was worth it, but as a one-time treat. While we were on the global road, sometimes all we wanted was two weeks at home to rest up, do some laundry, see some friends, and then we’d get back to traveling. We were so wrong. It was, in fact, three weeks at home before Lauren had an urge to travel again. She stayed put in San Francisco, but wanderlust is only fed by a trip like ours.