Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Life > Experiences

An Introduction To The World Of Travel

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

In December 2023 I would be absolutely shocked to know that I have been on a plane ride outside of the country. Or that I have two more trips planned. It is insane what less than a year can do in terms of your confidence and knowledge. I’ve learned that traveling is not as simple as it seems and there is a whole new world of tips and tricks. Now that I feel more well-versed in the world of travel, I have a few key moments of reflection I want to share. 

Travel Photo
Original photo by Chloe E. Hummel

You can travel whenever you are ready.

I have constantly thought that my life full of adventure and unyielding experiences would all start post-grad. In my mind, I just wasn’t the type of student who could take a weekend off or go crazy over spring break. Because in total honesty: It’s a privilege. I recognize that more than anything. However, if you truly want to explore the world, you can definitely find a way. It takes more sacrifice and hard work than the average person but it is never impossible. As long as you are willing to put the time and effort into planning, you will figure it out!

I never thought that I would study abroad. I knew an entire semester was out of the question for me due to my work commitments. I spoke with my Experiential Global Learning (EGL) advisors at UConn and found a summer opportunity that worked perfectly for me. I worked so hard to make sure I found that once-in-a-lifetime program. It worked so well that I was able to go right from school to traveling and made it back home to start my internship. I was able to find scholarships through my college and made my dream a reality. It is not a fairytale ending but a feasible goal.

Traveling alone is normal

I think a huge turn-off of traveling is the idea that you need a partner or a friend to do everything with. Learning to be alone is a difficult task to complete in college. I know that can translate over to the idea of traveling alone. However, not every travel plan needs a huge group chat of people willing to go.

I also understand that the component of safety is always the number one priority. Am I unable to travel due to safety concerns? Am I going to a place where I need another person to keep myself safe? Or am I unwilling to travel because it seems lonely to do things by myself? If you are in the latter group, then definitely reconsider. You can still have an amazing experience even if you are going alone. There is no negative connotation to being alone. You can find group activities that keep you in contact with others to lessen that burden. For example, use social media or activity apps like Viator.

Research is key

I always had the notion that it was extremely expensive to fly. I thought that a single flight to Europe would cost thousands of dollars. I had no idea how much anything should cost. One Google search proved me completely wrong. I was able to book roundtrip tickets to London for under $450. If you are looking and willing to be flexible on timing and dates, there is definitely a cheaper alternative available. 

It’s true that when you want to do something, you need to be willing to put the time and effort into it. I recommend spending at least three to four hours researching the exact locations, the right timing, and the specifics of the trips. Not everyone is a plan-to-the-minute-girly, and that is totally okay. But if you want to find the best deal, that means finding out what isn’t.  

Research will also provide opportunities for students. The official college student motto is “Never pay full price!” As students, there are thousands of discounts that exist. It’s our job to make sure to find them before submitting payment. Kayak has a whole webpage dedicated to cheap flights for students. 

Consider your Energy Level

This whole time, I thought that when you go somewhere new, you need to be in the mindset of exploration. I assumed that you need to explore every inch of the famous locations in the morning and follow up with an insane night-out itinerary. Going somewhere new is about balance. If you need to rot in bed all day to go out at night — take the time. Visiting and sightseeing is tiring and takes a toll on your energy. It cannot be recharged faster solely due to the fact that you are somewhere new. Being in a brand new city, state, or country cannot change who you are. You are still the same person you were before. Think of what you can generally accomplish before you begin feeling disappointed.

This isn’t a comprehensive list of what I’ve learned, but the highlights. This is exactly what I needed to hear two years ago so I could escape my comfort zone. Now I hope this advice helps the next person on their journey! 

Naiiya Patel

U Conn '25

Naiiya Patel is a writer for HerCampus UConn. She loves writing environmental, health & wellness, and overall feel good pieces! Naiiya hopes to write more pieces of environmental activism and how to get involved at UConn. Beyond Her Campus, Naiiya works as the Business Manager of the Daily Campus (UConn's student run newspaper). She oversees circulation of the physical paper, advertising, and the financial aspect the organization! Naiiya also works a Residential Assistant on campus in the Honors community! Naiiya is a junior studying Accounting with a minor in Philosophy and Social Responsibility & Impact in Business. Naiiya hopes to work as an Accountant before heading to law school! In her free time, Naiiya enjoys debating philosophy, getting boba, and reading! She is proficient at crocheting and hopes to learn knitting next. Naiiya loves to spend time with friends, focus on her studies, or work on creative projects.