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Overcoming Your Fear of Traveling

The Fear of Traveling


A word that can have many different meanings to different people. For some it may be excitement. For others it may be fear.

How does the word ‘travel’ make you feel?

Do you scroll through Pinterest to see all the beautiful places that you can’t afford, don’t have the time to go see, and wouldn’t even now where to start planning even if you wanted to? Or are you tired of living through your friends travel stories? Or is there a fear that you just can’t explain.

You would like to go on vacation so bad you can feel it in your bones but there is one thing or multiple things that are stopping you.

There are so many different variables on why you shouldn’t or can’t travel. So, to start off with, let’s get those reasons of fear out of the way.

You may have come up with more reason on, ‘why not’, if you do please send them in the comments and let me know what they are.

Fear is one of the major reasons why people don’t travel.

It’s completely natural because there are multiple reasons to be afraid. I can put ‘fear’ or ‘afraid of’ in front every reason why you shouldn’t travel.

Afraid of the unknown, afraid of having a bad experience, fear of flying, fear of traveling alone, fear of traveling during a pandemic, fear of getting injured, fear of getting robbed; I think you get the picture. Like I said, there are definitely more but let’s start with these.

fear of traveling

Overcome the Phobia or Fear of Traveling

Afraid of the Unknown or Change

Which unknown you may ask? All of them. There are many unknowns when it comes to traveling, just look at the topics in this post.

Fear of the unknown isn’t always a bad thing though.

If you knew exactly what was going to happen, every single day, what fun would that be? No one can live a life without any unknowns.

You don’t know what other people are thinking or what they will say all of the time, if or when you or your kids will get sick, or if the driver in the next lane will cut you off. The unknowns in the world help you experience and learn new things.

We learn how to communicate with others by listening and reading body language, learn how to take things as they come and go with the flow, and we learn how to be cautious drivers by paying attention.

If every day was the same as the last, life would get pretty dull. Don’t you think?

Afraid of Having a Bad Experience

I could list a bunch of bad experiences that I’ve had but the first or the second bad experience didn’t stop me from going on my third or fourth trip. I’ve been lost, no cash and my credit cards didn’t work (yes, I called the company before I left), got bedbugs.

Every now and again you will have a bad experience. It’s inevitable. Have you ever got a flat tire on the side of the road? That was a bad experience you got over, right?

There is no reason to be afraid of traveling.

Even the most experienced traveler has bad experiences from time to time because they take chances. The next time, they either know not to do it or what to do differently.

Look at bad experiences as learning experiences.

Fear of Flying

I love flying but I don’t like being cramped into small spaces and having to sit for hours on end. The one thing that gets me through a flight is thinking of the destination.

Sitting on the beach enjoying myself in the sun with drink in hand.

Some people have the fear of going through security, like me. (Even though I’m not doing anything wrong, I still have that sigh of relief once passing through TSA.)

There are online classes and audio tapes that you can listen to that help with the anxiety of flying.

One of the most successful and recommended programs is the SOAR Conquer Fear of Flying program that has been around since the ‘80s. It was developed by a pilot and licensed therapist.

If you prefer a cheaper version at home experience, check out this audio tape. It can take your anxiety of flying into a Spa-in-the-sky like experience instead. You can also apply these skills to any fear or phobia for the rest of your life.

Fly Without Fear: Guided Meditations for a Relaxin

Fear of Traveling Alone

I used to have this fear and to be honest, I still do a little. But now, I won’t let it stop me because I now know what the outcome is. Experiences and adventures! Too bad for everyone else because they are missing out.

There is no need to worry about having this fear of traveling alone, just make sure that you plan and stay safe.

How did I overcome this fear? Plan, plan, and more planning. I actually love planning trips; it gets me excited about going.

Then book the flight, once the flight is booked, there is no turning back. You have to go. Is it still scary after that?

Yes, of course. But the feel of accomplishment that you followed through is so much greater.

Fear of Getting Injured

You can fall in your kitchen, driveway, or anywhere. It doesn’t take going to a different state or country to make it happen.

This is when you take all necessary precautions by: packing a small first aid pack, knowing your surroundings, and getting travel insurance.

Here are some of the best travel insurance companies out there:

Fear of Getting Robbed


This hasn’t yet happened to me and I hope it never does. There have been times while traveling, alone and with my husband, that I’ve turned around or didn’t go a certain direction due to the crowd ahead. By crowd, I mean, a couple or group of guys that looked suspicious.

Make sure not to put yourself in dangerous types of situations.

Being aware of pickpockets. Pickpockets are extremely high in tourist areas.

Ladies make sure you always have a firm grasp on your purse. Men place your wallet in your front pocket.

Keep your cash and credit cards separate. Put some in your shoe, keep some in your wallet/purse, in multiple pockets, and don’t bring it all with you every day. Hide some in your suitcase or the hotel safe.

When I say ‘hide’, I mean ‘hide’. Even if it’s a fancy hotel, don’t trust the staff by leaving it lay around. I have heard about some horrifying stories.

Talk to the concierge or the front desk person at your hotel, they will be able to tell you areas of the city to stay away from when leaving the hotel.

Fear of Getting Lost

This has happened to me on multiple occasions. Don’t think of it as being lost, think of it as being on an adventure.

Adventures are unplanned and spontaneous.

As long as you are feeling safe, take a deep breath, and enjoy the scenery. This is when the best excitement happens. The best photos are taken.

You come along something or someone that made the whole trip worth it. Relax and enjoy. You’re on vacation.

Check out google maps and never get lost again.

Afraid of the Cost

I know that a lot of people can’t afford a long luxurious vacation. Neither can I. I wish I could, but I can’t. However, there are ways around this.

Instead, you could go to a less expensive destination. Or, stay in a smaller city outside the one that you wish to visit.

The hotel stay will be cheaper, and you could take the train or bus into the city for the day.

If you can’t afford to go for a week, make it a long weekend.

Especially, if you are just graduating college, you will have all that debt. But, take the chance to travel before the career because you may not get another one.

If you would like to learn ways on how to budget for your next trip, click here and learn 50+ ways to budget, plus get two free budget timelines.

budget timeline

Don’t let the fear of traveling cost you amazing experiences.

Fear of Not Knowing the Language

There is nothing worse than being someplace where you don’t speak the native language.

I was in Portugal, trying to find the hostel that I had booked a couple of nights before. I had directions and an address; however, I was still unable to find this place. I tried to ask some locals who were very nice about the whole situation, but I was having no luck with understanding them at all.

I know a little Spanish, so I thought that would possibly help me in Portugal, but I was wrong. The directions were saying one thing and I felt like they were telling me something completely different. 

I did end up finding the hostel which was only one block behind us. Go figure.

Don’t let past experiences stop you from moving forward, overcome that phobia of traveling so you can experience more adventures.

Don’t be afraid to ask the locals. Especially the younger generations, English is usually a second language for them.

If you do ask the locals though, remember to keep an eye on your valuables. Know I’m not saying that everyone is a thief but always be cautious.

There are also language apps that can be very helpful when in a different country.

A couple free apps are:

  • Google Translate – it has visual translation and works without a data connection. It also has simultaneous speech mode, however the offline voice translation works on Android phones only.
  • For iPhone users, Yandex Translate offers offline translation of Russian, French, German, Italian, and Spanish.
  • Another great app is iTranslate that is also free to use. However, this app requires an internet connection but does convert up to 80 different languages and there’s an option to save phrases for later.

Fear of Responsibility

If you are one that just doesn’t like the responsibility of anything there is no need to worry.

You can still go on a vacation. Yes, you can. Here is what I would suggest.

Book through a travel agent.

They can book anything from your flight, car, hotel, and activities. They will do all the dirty work for you. All you need to do is sit back, follow your itinerary, and relax.

Want even less responsibility, stay at an all-inclusive hotel, go on a cruise, or do a bus tour.

All-inclusive Hotels

All-inclusive hotels are great for people who want to stay put in one location. All your meals and beverages can be consumed at the hotel with no extra cost.

A Cruise

A cruise works this way as well, however there may be extra fees for dining in certain restaurants on the ship and alcoholic beverages usually cost extra unless you get them included.

Bus Tours

I’ve been on a couple of bus tours that were both amazing experiences. All your hotels, transportation, sites, and most meals are included.

You simply get on the bus each morning; it drives you to see the different sites while a tour guide gives you information about the country and where you are going to next and drops you off at the hotel for the night. The next day, same thing all over again but you go to a different location.

This is a great way to see different places and learn about the culture from a local all at the same time.

group travel
Playing soccer on the beach in Australia with a tour group on Fraser Island.

More Tips for Coping With a Fear of Traveling

Plan Your Routes: Sit down and write out where you will be traveling to. Know where your hotel is in relation to the sites that you want to go see. Allow plenty of time to arrive early and make a backup plan in case of delays.

Learn What to Expect: Do your research and familiarize yourself with the area.

Visualize: Picture yourself walking through all the major steps in your journey. Visualizing success builds confidence and reduces stress.

Rest and Hydrate: Stay hydrated by carrying a water bottle with you and make sure to get plenty of sleep in days leading up to your trip.

Avoid Alcohol and Drugs: Self-medicating can actually make you feel worse, although I know it’s tempting to take sleeping pills or have a glass of wine. Make sure to check with your physician before doing so.

Take a Friend: A friend can help you feel calm and take care of some of the things that make you feel especially uncomfortable doing.

Travel Minimally: This will help you from getting bogged down.(Just in case you need to run) 🙂

Maybe you just don’t have enough vacation? Here are ways to travel more with a full time job.

Yosemite campfire
Hiking in Yosemite with friends I met through couch surfing.

I hope that from reading this post you are now fear free. Or at least a little less than when you started reading it.

Everyone has a fear of something, but we shouldn’t let it stop us from doing something that brings us happiness or joy. Peace or relaxation. 

Life is too short; we need to live our lives to the fullest. Give ourselves meaning.

Move on from the phobia of traveling.

You have made it this far. That is one more step closer than you were yesterday.

Dare to travel and conquer your fears.

Overcome your phobia or fear of traveling.

Even if that travel means not traveling too far from home. Check out 25 Amazing ideas on how to travel the world without leaving home or need some inspiration to travel, read 14 Inspiring reasons to travel.

fear of traveling
fear of traveling

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