In the months before leaving home for a long trip abroad, many Americans play out a familiar ritual, visiting a travel medicine specialist in order to be stuck with a series of needles and given pills that cause nightmares. But the most painful part is often the price.
I've written about how I spent the summer of 2018 chasing concerts across Europe. Here's the (heavily editorialized) setlists from many of those shows, below and also available to play on Spotify.
It's no secret that I have outdated taste in music. This summer, I indulged it.
I often check out Pollstar to see if anyone I'm interested in will be coming to town.
When I first started planning how to leave my job and take another long trip, I did the same thing in some of the first cities. I can't remember which concert I found first, but pretty soon one became a dozen. As I started looking up cities and some of my favorite artists' summer tours, things quickly snowballed. I decided that I would use concerts and music festivals to help draw my path east across Europe, to where I would finish in Finland. Since the beginning of this year, I have seen at least thirty bands perform.
I thought I'd make up some arbitrary awards for the shows I've seen. The full list of shows is at the bottom.
In September of 2001, I was just beginning my senior year of high school, still ensconced in my prep school's pastel, stained-glass world; it was a place for academics, where televisions would have ordinarily been rare but for that day.
Outspoken traveler (and inspiration for my North Korea trip) Paul Karl Lukacs explains how being a digital nomad isn't without negative dangers. While he's largely right, I will comment that your employability post-travel largely depends on overall demand for your profession. During travel, unless you're already an independent worker, good luck finding someone to let you work remotely and -- inevitably -- erratically.
Sort of an off week. Perhaps these books haven't changed the world, but they revolutionized my point of view on the world, much more so than better-known pop science books like Freakonomics or Blink.
I don't have a definitive answer, but recently I was planning a trip to New York, and came across some incredible numbers. Both BoltBus and Amtrak depart from Baltimore Penn Station, and arrive at New York's Penn Station. (The bus stop is a few blocks away from each).
The Amtrak's high-speed Acela takes two hours, fifteen minutes, and costs at least $134.
The BoltBus takes three and a half hours, costing $15.
Both of these are demand-based prices, but the ratio remains effectively the same: for an extra hour of travel time, BoltBus is one-tenth the price of Amtrak. How is this possible?
It's an odd feeling, spending July 4th outside the US.
Anywhere there's a lot of foreign tourists and local unemployment, you'll find them: local people who seem smart and speak English, yet inexplicably have nothing better to do than talk to you.
I hate to paint with a broad brush, because in every country, most of the time, I've also had fantastic experiences with locals who legitimately want to talk to you, practice their English, or make some foreign friends. But it's important to always stay aware of your surroundings, and remember that context is crucial. The stories below -- my own and others' -- are illustrative of the precautions you should take, especially in tourist hubs.