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SIT (solo independent travel)

Table of Contents

This 'quick links' Table of Contents allows you to jump back & forth between this table of contents AND each of sub-headings below.


        Topic Synopsis                     Full Text

1.   SIT Travelers anxiety:                  FULL

2.   SIT Alone vs Loneliness:             FULL

3.   SIT Country/City/Sites:               FULL

4.   SIT Research:                             FULL

5.   SIT Travel Trip Dates:                  FULL

6.   SIT Planning:                               FULL

7.   SIT free time:                               FULL

8.   SIT Itinerary:                                FULL

9.   SIT Guide’s Expertise:                 FULL

10. SIT Transportation:                      FULL

11. SIT Lodging:                                FULL

12. SIT Food-meals:                          FULL

13. SIT Limited luggage space:         FULL

14. SIT Wardrobe & Equipment:        FULL

15. SIT Video/PIKs & memories:       FULL

16) SIT Real Culture & Support:        FULL

17) SIT Perks:                                    FULL

18) SIT Eco-friendly:                          FULL

19) SIT Price & extras:                       FULL

I. Prelude 

Now, for whatever reason(s), you apparently have decided to investigate the possibility of SIT (solo independent travel) foreign travel. “Good on ya, Mate”   (Aussie term)

Anecdote: ...some SIT travelers I have met:

  1. A young woman traveling the world solo on her bike.
  2. A middle-aged woman who had traveled continuously for 10 years around the world.
  3. A young man whose litany of countries visited during his 9-month odyssey sounded like he ws reading an atlas’ index.

A. Where can SIT foreign travelers travel to?

A SIT traveler’s options are limited only by their imagination, research & planning, physical well-being, prudent judgment, some money, and initiative. SIT travelers can go almost everywhere.

    Anecdote: 1st communist Myanmar visit: While in Chaing Mai, Thailand I learned that the Mai Sai border crossing was the dictatorship of Myanmar’s only border crossing open to travelers if you paid your entry fee in US dollars which they needed for foreign trade. [ytlk: Thai: Myanmar 1st trip] Scary, at the time, but curiosity drove me.   Years later when Myanmar fully opened again,  I spent several interesting weeks traveling there. [ytlk: Myanmar 2nd trip]

B. What transport vehicles do SITs use?

SIT’s, literally use all travel modes of transport. Flight for quick long distance, trains & buses for local & city travel & less expensive long distances, taxis/Ubers & tuk tuks, motorcycle taxis, and motorcycle & bike rentals. Walking (walkabouts) dominate my local travel mode whenever reasonable. 

Quite often a mix or transportation modes is useful, particularly to remoter rural areas & sites.

    SEE Anecdote: My Argentina/Chile trip. below

C. Can I mix 3 Travel Kinds?

While I am focused on ‘solo, independent travel’, SIT, it is reasonable, easy, exciting & often most time & cost efficient to mix all 3 “SIT, tours & cruising. 

For example, cruisers may take a port-side day (tour) excursion while tour bus travelers may evening cruise Sydney Harbour. Both may SIT travel elsewhere after their cruise or bus tour. All travelers may relish a walkabout’s serendipitous freedom. Every combination is possible.

  Anecdote: My Argentina/Chile trip.  In 2007, I did a 3-month SIT jaunt thru Argentina & Chile, [YTclip] including 1) Argentina’s spectacular Iguazu Fall’s  , THEN,  after Buenos Aires’s walkabouts … several weeks of, van tours, lake cruises, & SIT walkabouts going south near Andes mountains to Ushuaia.  

THEN, a small cruise ship through Beagle Channel up Chile’s west coast to Valparaiso, [YTclip] including a Torres del Paine National Park van day-tour & hike ….. & on & on.      I am leaving out a lot. 😃. 

II. SIT (solo independent travel)


This post’s goal is to fully define, describe & evaluate ALL significant SIT’s (solo independent travel) Travel Factors” to help you make the most informed choice between SIT, touring & cruising.

SIT (solo & independent travel) is a single traveler usually driven relentlessly by an insatiable curiosity toward everything, yet, instantly, flexibly, detouring for something else of interest.                       

THIS traveler prizes their freedom most.

Independent solo travelers (SIT) are presumed to be in reasonably good physical condition, of modest finances, confident & willing to creatively & courageously confront challenges & fears of solo travel. 

A SIT traveler accepts all responsibility for their trip’s success. All pre-trip research, education & planning, all transportation, lodging, food etc logistics, and all decisions, problems & mistakes they make. 

SIT travelers tend to be confident, but prudent;    self-reliant, but does her research AND seeks other’s critical guidance/assistance;    busy & active, yet will pause to contemplate; slaved to their personal itinerary, but leaps on interesting detours;    seemingly introverted, but keenly aware of people & activities around them;   self-driven & firm, but not selfish or insensitive.

B. CONFIDENT, but prudent:

SIT solo travelers exude a quiet, confidence ...  absent any hint of braggadocio because they seek no approval, but their own. They know with risk comes occasional failure that they alone must overcome. 

    Anecdote: Argentina's lost main rolling bag: I stored my rolling luggage at a bus station while I day trip – detoured south to an archaeological site,  returning later in the day to pick up bag and move on. But alas, the returning bus apparently bypassed the original bus station, and I, my bus station & my bag were ALL "lost."

Fortunately, a young man I met with his father at the archaeological site offered to drive me with their car until we found my bag which we did. Whew!! ... that was scary

Often, in their regular lives, they have weathered many trials & survived them, accepted sole responsibility for their missteps AND their solutions, .… which, in turn, …  elevated their confidence, self-worth & self-esteem even further. 

He may push his own ‘comfort’ boundaries to keep validating his self-worth, knowing each experience is a risk that toughens & enriches his character.

        Anecdote: crossing Saigon's scooter–jammed main streets: A very old Vietnamese lady taught me how:    
    1) when a brief break, step resolutely off the curb into traffic, &
    2) DO NOT STOP or change speed or direction. Scooter drivers are very skilled relying on your predictable direction and speed. OR, very safe alternative, walk downstream of an old lady who is crossing. 🥴   K6 pik need new one 4 Jarom

       Anecdote: SIT solo Alaska backpack & Yukon kayak to Dawson City: On my 1st Alaska road trip. I gave a ride to 2 girls who with friends had just canoed Lake LeBarge & some of Yukon River.  Later, I researched, planned, trained, and learned to Kayak, then,  backpacked Alaska's Chilkot Trail into Canada's NW Territories to solo kayak 450 miles down to Dawson City's 1897 gold rush town.

A SIT traveler avoids unnecessary risks and manages her fears with researched planning & knowledge, quality equipment, and growing experience. Never too foolishly proud to accept help or ask directions. 

      Anecdote: Slovakia Eastern Europe 'lost':  En route to Bojnice Castle, I tried to flexibly alter my well-researched train schedule, and chose a different train.  I asked the RR's platform officer if this was the train I needed.   He confirmed.   Wrong!!

A few stops later I asked the Conductor to confirm my ticket's destination. Moments later, she returned, looked at TIK again & advised "wrong train."  But where was I ???

Panicked, (yeah, I do that too) I jumped off, direct to Station tciket clerk (who spoke NO English), BUT no trains going back for a while, but where. She called a taxi & off we went in search of my original station so I could start over. But we never did find the station I had left from.  Am I having fun yet? Ha Ha.

Finally,  I was totally lost!   My frustrated taxi driver finally stopped, pointed at a bus stop across the street, and left.   I was angry thinking he had duped me and was just  dumping me -- this was NOT a train station and certainly not the station I had left from.

I searched the maze of bus schedules but saw nothing that made sense. Dragged my bags to a nearby University in search of an English speaker who gave me directions to ‘nowhere’, until I stopped a carload of police, who finally put me in their car & drove me back to the same taxi driver's ‘bus stop.” I thanked them, (“You don’t question good-intentioned police).

I then began a much closer examination of bus schedules blizzarding the bus stop board. Eventually, I discovered my city, confirmed with other folks at the bus stop, and several hours later I arrived by bus at my castle town.

During the above, my emotions ranged in great spikes from ‘confidence’ to “panic” to ‘resolute’ to “relief’ to ‘frustrated futility‘ to ‘hopeful confidence’, ultimately to ‘elation’ on arrival. While not normal, such rapid, unforeseen crisis are frequent enough to always be in my mind’s forward-searching eye.

Lessons Learned:
    1) Sometimes, you will make wrong decisions,
    2) panic instead of 'closely examining bus stop schedules,
    3) But, how bad could it have been? Take a taxi to any hostel & spend time figuring it out again & leave the next day. 
Panic is a natural response ....but,  must learn to quickly control.


Of course, SIT solo travelers visit internationally renowned sites often exploring much longer than most tourists, searching & probing for nuances, questioning the curious & contemplating the intriguing. SIT travelers are usually keen observers of both the nuanced & obvious because they are focused in-the-moment; insatiably curious, poking deeper & deeper into what fascinates their curiosity.

But, perhaps even more important to SITs are less popular or remote sites & activities. independent solo travelers pre-trip research intentionally ferrets out obscure, remote sites and experiences, because these rural back roads & small villages often expose a culture’s unique, authentic lifestyles & perhaps equally important, avoid the increasingly onerous cacophony & chaos of major site’s tourist hordes.

SITs seek, unique sites & experiences, eating.& sleeping local, walking non-tourist neighborhoods, using local transportation, and searching out remote villages.

    Anecdote: Laos' interior solo motorcycle trips:   Several 3 days OVN (overnight) Laos solo motorcycle loops in N Laos backcountry to see seldom visited temples & historical sites.

    Anecdote: Lijiashan Village, China: is an extant village of homes carved into rock hillsides & faced with elaborated carved wooden open work. Its inhabitants still working the surrounding steep hills.        ??? [ytlk: China: rural villages]

C. BUSY, yet we'll pause & detour:

Guided by my Personal Travel Itinerary, I may always seem busy, … constantly on a mission, on the move, … hunting the next interesting or novel ‘thing/experience’ around-the-next-corner.        

My video camera records the curious;   zooming in to a painting's fine brush strokes high on a wall, a Thai temple’s ornate gold steeple top, to very top of an Andes snow capped volcano. Verbally recording my reflections & questions at those moments.

I meticulously follow my itinerary’s walking tour so I won’t miss what I researched so diligently & sought so much to experience, …

yet, I’ll instantly pause or detour for a new-found attraction: 

    Anecdote: Cairo’s dark narrow street: Walking along a main street. I looked down at what was a dark, & to me, an ominous-looking street with high buildings that cloaked the narrow street in dark shadow.  

I strongly debated. walking down it, but I did, & it was a great experience seeing the underbelly of Cairo and chatting with a group of Egyptian men after I said hello in Arabic to them.  "Salam alaykum."


D. Extroverted, yet frank & honest

A SIT solo traveler may seem introverted & silent because so deeply focused, yet her extroverted-self explodes with friendliness when awakened.

Avoids time wasting distractions that don’t add value to her journey. Discarding from her life people who ridicule, disrespect or subverting her ambitions … as mere distracting obstacles

SIT (solo independent travel)

Travel Factors

1. SIT travel anxiety:

I suggest that all travelers, both domestic and foreign, suffer ‘travel anxiety’ to some degree because they leave the comfortable, confident security of their home environment for a foreign culture; sometimes radically so. different roads, laws, foods, etc.                                                                      

SIT travelers may be prey to even more ‘travel anxiety’ because they are ‘solo & independent ' in a foreign culture which varies radically from USA culture and more so, between other foreign countries. 

Ironically, it is EXACTLY this anxious uncertainty that provieds SIT's unique, unexpected experiences, not only testing ourselves, but providing novel, rich experiences. Yet, always have a back door — an escape strategy.

I combat anxiety levels (fear) with exhaustive, pre-trip research & planning melded into my own Personal Guidebook-like itinerary. The more you know about a country’s culture the less ‘travel anxiety.’     I can almost guarantee. 

18. Eco-friendly: (full)

1. SIT travel anxiety: (full)



2. 2. SIT’s Alone vs Loneliness: (full)SIT’s Alone vs Loneliness: SITs by definition are ‘alone’, BUT probably NOT ‘lonely.’ which simply means “no one is nearby.”      I prize being alone; it’s solitude & privacy. I am a contented introvert or extrovert when it pleases me.      

 2. SIT’s Alone vs Loneliness: (full)                                              




3. SIT Country/City/Sights & activities:

SITs have maximum freedom & flexibility to visit their most desired mix of countries, cities, & sites anywhere from most popular to remote & obscure …. limited only by their imagination, research & planning, physical well-being, prudent judgment, and initiative.

Travel Buds: Like tiny rose buds under fresh spring snow,  I discovered my ‘Travel Bud’ sites & activities from a lifetime of education, media, and intense pre-trip research.

My Approach: 1) make a list, 2) search your memory, 3) travel shows, 4) travel blogs, 5) Google Search, & finally, 6) your tentative host country’s guidebook.

SIT ’Shop-steered” visits:  SIT solo travelers can avoid cuz control their itinerary. 


3. SIT Country/City/Sites (full):


4. SIT Research

SIT travelers are completely responsible for ‘research — the SIT’s foundation that uncovers a host country's goldmine of sites & experiences required for a successful, smooth SIT.

4 “How to’ elements of my search: 1) guidebook, 2) skim quickly, 3) slice, dice & remove, & 4) scour balance.               Sometime during research, you’ll begin to rough out your Travel Itinerary.                                         [pkl:   ] 

4. A SIT Research (full)


5. SIT Travel Trip Dates: 

A SIT traveler’s choice of seasons & travel dates is usually personal based on several possible preferences: vacation time, school opening/closing or seasonal events.

Three useful guidelines: 1) desired ideal weather, 2) avoiding high-season congestion, chaos & inflated prices, & 3) off-season closures.

Avoidance tactics.

     1) Popular Tier 1 sites: 1) off-season travel, & 2) Early or late arrival.

     2) All sites: arrive before the site opens, sometimes an hour or more.

5. SIT Travel Trip Dates (full)


6. SIT Planning:

If SIT traveler’s research is foundational… then, planning is the organization of your research AND your itinerary is your personalized “How To Manual’s.” itinerary. 

I am an obsessive, paranoid planner 😃 because I don’t want to miss anything in a country I’ll visit only once.; … Too many other countries.

      MY SIT Travel Planning PROCESS:       [pplk: Resource>Itinearieies]

At least a month of 6 hr, 6-7 days /week for each travel month researching for every place & activity that interests me because...  I am never going back.

6. SIT Planning (full):


7. Free Time:  “Hidden gold mine”:       [LINK. ft ]

In theory, your Free Time is ‘your entire trip’s time’ LESS the time you allocate to visiting sites/activities, meals & sleep. SIT travelers control 100% of that "free time” compared to bus tour travelers & cruisers's little control over ‘real’ travel.

SIT traveler’s ‘free time' is: 1) time with NOTHING intentionally planned, & 2) surplus time intentionally ‘hidden’ in each on-site visit time allocation. 

SIT traveler’s ‘free time’ is their ‘chocolate syrup on top of chocolate ice cream.’ (I am a chocolate addict.😢. Her ‘free time’ is THE unexpected SIT treat.

6. SIT Planning (full):


8. SIT Itinerary:

A travel document is an itinerary of a ‘simple’ route or journey.

Initially, I relied JUST on a guidebook &/or a simple paper list of cities, sites & activities experiences I would visit.

However, the more I traveled, I realized I was a foolishly inefficient & unwise traveler because I was wasting time, missing sites, and getting confused for 5 reasons:
    1) not enough on-site time,
    2) not enough ‘planned flexible 'free time’,
    3) wasted travel time researching when literally traveling,
    4) unnecessarily retracing my earlier routes to sites I had missed, &
    5) dragging my bag around town looking for a vacant hostel bed.

My Travel Itinerary is my Personal Guidebook, super condensed to JUST critically needed info for easily navigating my 2 to 3-month trip smoothly … without missing anything, yet, with 'free time’s flexibility built-in.

My detailed Travel Itinerary was useful for several reasons:
    1) I traveled more easily, confidently, & less anxious, because I had a Plan. and
    2) I had more travel time for 4 ??? reasons.    

  2. more available ACTUAL travel time because:
        a) less wasted unnecessary route duplication, 
        b) less ‘on-the-fly’ wasted time researching trans~, hostels & sites.
       c) easier to alter or fix with ‘unforeseen’ itinerary changes or mistakes.
       d) less likely to ‘miss’ a desired site or experience.

Simplify my Travel Itinerary to fit your travel style.

      a.  My Standard Itinerary Outline Structure:

              1) TRANS: transportation in and out,       [jlk:    ].   
              2) ACCM: accommodation/lodging.        [jlk:    ]
              3) FOOD:                                                 [jlk:    ]
              4) Sites & Experiences or TODOs:        [jlk:    ]

      b. My ‘time’ allocation:

Most SIT foreign travel is for a specific, limited time. In my early travels, I had either had too little or too much time on-site wasting time or ‘missing’ sites or ‘unforeseen’ opportunities that popped up. 

So I started estimating how much time to travel to & visit each site or activity ... being purposely ‘overgenerous. Then, I sequenced my daily walkabouts like a Fed EX or UPS driver.  In addition, I scheduled 1 free day for every 7 travel days.  Each SIT day was fulfilling.       [pplk: Resource: ITIN example]

Student -led free CITY Tours: Many cities offer college student-led, free city tours once or twice a day giving you an informative walkabout that orients you to the most culturally & historically interesting part of the original Old Town.

Free Tours by Foot:

VIDEO: I almost always take these tours and then immediately follow them up the next day with my video camera spending deep time inside the sites.

8. SIT Itinerary (full):




9. SIT Guide’s Expertise:

YOU are the guide!   SIT Irony!

My ‘guide’ expertise was a mix of pre-trip & night-before research & onsite interpretative material so I could truly appreciate what I was visiting without wasting time dawdling on-site with my cell.

There are SIT traveler;’s alternatives: 1) Day Tour Guides, and 2) Private Guide’s 3 sub-categories: a) Site’s private guides, b) Informal Local Site Guides, and c) and local ‘sneaky’ site private guides.

I usually avoid private guides because 1) too Distracting, 2) can’t determine skill level beforehand, & 3) not always correct. 

9. SIT Guide’s Expertise (full):


10. SIT Transportation:

Transportation pervades all SIT travel utilizing all vehicle forms., but is complex particularly ‘on the fly.’

    A. My purpose: How to research transportation options research and effectively store in a Personal Travel itinerary so your travel visits are fluid and time efficient. 

Navigating large cities is relatively easy, if pre-trip research ‘where you're going & how to get there’ is quickly accessible in your re-trip prepared Personal Itinerary.  Fortunately, online research sites are easily accessible for multiple transportation options, details & booking. .               [pplk: Safety: Airport to Town]

    B. My research PROCESS:  define “departure” AND “destination’ points, THEN plug them into an online transportation resource (railroad/bus company online sites). THEN, choose best of many options & book, if you wish. That’s it. Several decades ago a travel agent might take days.  [jlk; Safe:Airport]

    C.Your Itinerary’s Transportation Sections:                                    [plk” Itineary]

        1. International Flight Arrival: My personal itinerary includes all info relevant for ALL flights, layover intervals, flight’s “duration, gate & seat numbers, AND Airport to MY city hostel’s transportation, 

        2. Local city Transportation options & my choice criteria: speed, price, site location & fun[pplk; Safe:City/Country]

        3. Long Distance TRANS-IN & TRANS-OUT for each new city: [pplk; Safe: City/Country]

10. SIT Transportation (full):


11. SIT Lodging:                                                                                                          [jlk; lodging]

SIT lodging/hostel's two categories: 1) availability & 2) quality.

    1) Predictable availability varies between 
        a) my 1st pre-booked night after flights from USA when I want a hostel bed waiting to rapidly reduce my anxiety & jet lag, recover & quickly orient myself.                                                                 

        b) availability as I move to next new city or town searching lodging options.

    2) Hostel Quality is dependent on city, town or rural village offerings -- not always a given.

My strategies when moving from one city to next city are: a) pre-book if availability doubts, OR.  b) take my chances if not sure of my schedule, my final destination, or if sparse online availability. NOTE: as SIT travel has dramatically increased, early pre-booking may be necessary to avoid frantic searches.

Key Hostel Amenities: If multiple hostel options, I pre-trip screen all hostels for my most desired amenities, particularly for multi-day stays, ultimately choosing & retaining in my itinerary the 4-5 most ideal.      I book when timing becomes predictable.

11. SIT Lodging (full):


12. SIT food:                                                                                                                 PIK: different 

Sit food options range from snacks & DIY pasta ‘gut-bombs’ to expensive 5-star restaurant spreads,  if available. If a passionate foreign cuisine’ foodie’, scour guidebooks, and English restaurant reviews, and ask hostel staff & locals.                                                                                                                            Not a ‘foodie’, so my ideal is either a hostel kitchen or an authentic, non-tourist, local restaurant with a dish I can enjoy night after night. Easily pleased bachelor.😄 Occasionally I discover a dish I can’t live without: Hiroshoma’s Okonomiaki.                                                                                                    

TIP: Ask desk clerk where their family eats out, 2) seek busy restaurants filled with loyal locals.

12. SIT food: (full)




13. SIT limited luggage space:

SIT solo travelers opt for high mobility, low volume & weight luggage because they have to lug it in a variety of vehicles & conditions. Redundancy is avoided, fashion is superfluous,     PIK: my day pak

  Efficient packing is equally critical depending on nature & length of trip. My rolling luggage & day pack combo

served well; my day pack was used alone on OVN (overnight) side trips from a base city.

My exhaustive Inventory List [pplk: Resources: INV] detailed each item, quantity & location in luggage compartments. It provided several benefits:  

1) exactly where each item was, 2) easily add/subtract items, & 3) amend for each future trip, 4) special OVN (overnight) Inventory List

13. SIT’s limited luggage space: (full)


14. SIT Wardrobe & Equipment

My SIT solo wardrobe was dictated by 8 practical factors: a. cultural acceptability, b. necessity, c. comfort, d. washing ease & quick drying, e) safety, f. all-around utility, g. anticipated weather conditions, & h. anticipated activities. PIK: Trekking poles

Specialty Equipment: SIT travelers often create their own adventures requiring specialized equipment usually for ‘life-dependent’ activities: e.g. scuba breathing apparatus) or technical climbing. If so, perhaps, take your own.   [pplk: Wardrobe] 

The more & wiser you travel, the more you whittle down your ‘stuff’ to bare essentials. 

14. SIT Wardrobe & Equipment: (full)




15. SIT video/photos & memories:

30+ years ago, I began videoing all my hikes & trips. My sole original purpose then & now of reliving my domestic & foreign, authentic, ‘in-the-dirt’ travels in my immobile ‘rocking chair’ old age days. Now (cancer.)! 

I was never satisfied with snapshots revealing little description, context, or detail unless it was obvious: ex. pyramids. I wanted video’s visual & audio flowing story-line of my in-the-moment commentary & questions

Even now, at 84, when editing, I'm surprised by sites and experiences I had completely forgotten about, but can now relive AND answer the questions I asked …  lo those many years ago on the video.

15. SIT video/photos & memories: (full)


16. SIT Local Culture & Economy Support

    A. Local Cultural Experiences: The closer-to-the-dirt (walking, small rural village home-stays, family restaurants, small farm visit) the the closer you are to that culture. 

SIT travelers can INTENTIONALLY seek authentic cultural “experiences’ through their choice of sites, experiences, hostel & restaurants. PIK: Lijiashan Village’s ‘home’ sleeping on a stone ‘kang’l

    B. Financially Supporting Local Economy:

Supporting a local economy means spending your traveler’s money so that it benefits the local economy rather than non-local corporate-like businesses (hotels or retail chains) or corrupt government businesses like Myanmar’s Junta Military-owned hotels, travel agencies etc.

SIT traveler’s may have to investigate closely to navigate this good & bad range.  Ask ‘local’ hostel staff.

16. SIT Real Culture & ECON Support: (full)


17. SIT Perks:

SITs independent perception of a perk is whatever ‘indulgence’ price they wish to pay for: more expensive hostel’s single room, a classy restaurant dinner, or a 1st class long-distance bus seat. 

17. SIT Perks: (full)


18. Eco-friendly:

Eco-friendly means practices having little or no damaging effect on the environment, or better yet, improving EarthSITs are in a Catch-22 dilemma.  OTOH, flying carbon-spewing jet aircraft, BUT yet, STILL, can seek to mitigate our negative environmental impacts.

SIT travelers, while unlikely to alter a culture’s practices, can subtly do what is right. Japanese carry their litter back home.

18. Eco-friendly: (full)




19. Price & extras: 

SIT travelers span the gamut of prices.  

Some want full-on luxury in SIT mode, others seek the least expensive dorm bed while I am somewhere in between, but intentionally tending to ‘low end.’ because, IMO,  the more you spend, the farther away you get from the culture’s walking or tuk-tuk experience.             

OTOH, being the hypocrite I am, I rode China & India’s 4th Class ‘hard seat’ once for experience, but thereafter my bony butt wanted padding of 2nd or 1st class seat. Same with long-distance bus rides: 1st class seat definitely most comfortably sleep-worthy.

Currency fluency: SIT travelers must skillfully & quickly learn to determine USD value of an item priced in the host country’s local currency so you can quickly determine it's worth to you relative to USD$1 or $10. [pplk: Resource: Soft:  ]

19. Price & extras: (full)



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