Imagine you’ve arrived at the destination of your dreams impending the journey of a lifetime. You feel the breeze of a unique and unknown place brush across your face as you taste the air of this new area you’re yet to discover. Suddenly you’re snapped out of your wanderlust-ridden daze on hearing the voices of the varied and diverse range of tourists who came with you. You then realize that you’re not the only person who travels, but it’s ok. Here’s a list of people you’d find while globe-trotting. If you’re an extrovert, you’ll have a better chance of getting to know these people, and the (often times) insane and incredible ways their lives differ from yours. You’ll also find yourself in the company of not-so-entertaining characters on your travels, who you wish you never met. Not to worry, as this list shall cover both for your convenience. And to make the deal sweeter, let me do it in the most millennial way possible: through the realm of pop culture.
The Brady Bunch
These are the cookie-cutter, parents-and-two-kids travellers who you’ll find to be loud, obnoxious and many times extremely vocal about their tastes and preferences. Basically, the exact opposite of Jason Bourne. The wife is usually over-knowledgeable, and the husband is more or less at the whim and mercy of his two childrens’ outlandish desires. I’m not saying that every family is like this, but I can’t deny that this is normally how most nuclear family vacations look like. Oh, and not to mention the clear and undeniable presence of dad caps, road maps and fanny packs.
The Albert Einstein
These individuals are the kinda people you’ll discover mostly at historical sites or museums. They don’t seek tour guides, no… they ARE the tour guide. They’ll find any opportunity to display their Wikipedia searching skills, and pretentious knowledge that is usually inaccurate, contradicting and exhibited only to make the actual tour guide feel like an idiot. They’re essentially the pretentious nincompoops that’ll find any opportunity to seem like a know-it-all pro. I call them the Kanye West of tourists.
The Zayn Malik
These are the kind of travelers who enjoy going solo and tend to do their own thing. They avoid big groups and the cliché sightseeing paths. They don’t really hang out with other fellow travelers and just generally like their independence when journeying across different places. Indisputable characteristics include: resting brood face and gigantic, self-sufficient rucksacks.
The Elizabeth Gilbert
If you’ve read ‘Eat Pray Love’, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. These are the people looking to have a complete life-changing experience. They commonly appear in places of ‘spiritual healing’ (India, Thailand and Bhutan) and will try to “rediscover themselves while on this journey”. Whether they actually accomplish this or not, remains to be seen… but my best guess is that they came home with some mala beads, a couple of yoga books and a heavy tan.
The Kim Kardashian
These are the girls… and guys who have their phones perennially super-glued to their hand throughout the trip. They will exploit any opportunity to take selfies, selfie videos, selfie-stick videos and live streams. They are the reason you see a sudden flash in a “photography strictly prohibited” area. But on the bright side, they will be able to help you find out who’s a Gen X and who’s a Millennial, by the latter’s reaction (rolling of eyes, snickering, complaining and a clear display of annoyance means that they are extremely Gen X).
You know those aggravatingly loud and attention-commanding group of boys that annoy the hell out of you? Yup, that’s who I’m talking about. You will see them everywhere, from your hotel to all the tourist spots and more importantly, every bar/club in the immediate vicinity of those places. Their reasons for being there range from a bachelor party to a biking getaway. Either way, they’re too obnoxious, boisterous, rowdy and in-your-face at all times, whether you like it or not. However, they may not always have the aesthetically appealing looks of One Direction… so don’t have any high hopes.
The Lady Gaga
That one girl or guy that is guaranteed to be dressed in the most ostentatiously douchey way possible. It’s those girls who wear booty shorts to a temple or a fancy dress and heels to a forest safari; and those guys who wear aviators indoors or at night and have zero colour coordination skills. They try to be as fashion-forward, but in the process, set our eyesight back by a minimum one million years. Bottom Line: be comfortable when travelling. Unless you know what you’re doing, don’t be too outlandish with your choices.
The Nice Locals
Your travelling experience would be severely lacking if you didn’t find yourself interacting with at least one local. You’ll be surprised by what you learn from a friendly local who wants to teach you more about the land they love. You’ll be able to better understand their routines, culture and lifestyle.
The Not-So-Nice Locals
For every good Samaritan that exists in this world, there are always those few assholes who make you wish you never left your house… because that’s how angels and demons work, right? From rude taxi drivers to shitty tour guides, and the beloved Indian staple of bastard hawkers, there is no shortage of locals who will make you regret every decision that lead you to that interaction. They’re the King Joffrey of locals. Yup, that was a Bieber-Roast reference.
The Oprah Winfrey
These are the people who have the ability to change your life or at least the way you view it. They will make you feel glad that you’re an extrovert. They could be tourists or locals; but either way their personality, vibes, stories and lifestyle are sure to inspire you and enrich your overall travelling experience. They make your trip more worth it and memorable.
Our world is filled to the brim, even spilling, with the biggest assholes, jerks and monsters you’ve ever met. But right next to them, are the most incredible, passionate and galvanizing humans you’ll ever have the chance to interact with in your life. Our world truly has it all. And you’ll be able to familiarize yourself with these people, only through travel. That’s the beauty of it: you’ll only truly understand by doing it yourself. In all honesty, you have something to learn from every single person on this list. But it’s up to you decide whether you want to get to know them or not. So, who are you gonna start your next conversation with?