5 Reasons Why You Won’t Travel (And How To Fix Them)

Nick Wharton Author Bio Picture

First of all, let’s clarify. These are excuses, not reasons.

For some reason, people who love to travel still claim that they simply can’t. This article will outline the excuses for such claims and also explain why they are untrue.

Almost anyone and everyone can do some sort of travelling (especially if you’re from a western country), but we put limitations on ourselves and make excuses for why “we can’t travel.”


We had the same issues before we started travelling and we have even used a few of the lines from below! But the truth is that you CAN travel… you just have to make the decision to do so.

But I Just Don’t Have The Money!

This is probably the most common excuse used today. Travel can be expensive, there is no doubt about that, but it is cheaper than staying at home, paying a mortgage and going out to bars every weekend.

No Money

When we were living in Calgary, we would spend nearly $120 every day before we even got out of bed! That’s just paying our mortgage, car payments, bills, insurance etc.

That’s DOUBLE what we spend on average travelling. If you can cut down on those bills, and not go out on weekends, which can cost $100-$200 on drinks and dinners, you’d be amazed at how much you can save.

Example: We made less than the average annual wage in Calgary, yet after one year of working very hard, we saved enough to travel for 2 years.

For more on how to save money, click here.

I Have Kids!

Wait a minute! Since when is it impossible to travel with kids?

Surely we can’t empathise fully on this matter as we’ve never taken off with little ones, but have a look at Travelling Canucks and their amazing travelling family.

Travelling with children comes with its own set of challenges, but it’s a whole new type of adventure, and certainly having toddlers is no reason to miss out on travel.

We just met a Spanish couple who were travelling for 3 weeks with a 15-month-old child in IRAN! They said they felt very safe (as everyone does) and the Iranians treated their boy as if he was their own family. People all around the world love babies and you’ll have a great conversation starter just by pushing a stroller.

I Have A Great Job, I Wouldn’t Want To Jeopardize It

Let’s look at that statement for a moment. How great is your job if taking some time off to do something you love “jeopardizes” your position there?

Jobs allow for holidays and even though 2 weeks is pretty standard in North America, you should be able to extend this if you really want to.

In many parts of Europe, 6 or 8 weeks is the norm and people frequently take a month off to travel. If you’re from North America, this may not be so easy… but it is possible.

Bank some hours. Work overtime. Work from home. Request Leave.

There are plenty of ways to take extra time off, but most people are just afraid to ask. If you have such a great job, then the company you work for should be accommodating when it comes to doing something you’re passionate about. A happy employee is a good employee.

If you work for yourself… you simply can’t use this excuse. Hire a temp to take over. Ask your partner to cover for you. Close up shop for a bit, or work remotely from your computer.

If you’re your own boss, the answer should always be yes. Otherwise… what’s the point of being self-employed?

Still scared to quit? Read how we dropped everything to travel!

I Own A Home & Pets. I Can’t Just Pack Up And Go

This is a big one, and it’s true. It’s not easy to pack up everything and leave it all behind. But we did it, and thousands of others have done it before you. If you have a mortgage on your home you have 3 options:

1. Rent out your home while you’re gone. This can also be a great source of income while on the road.

2. Hire a Trusted House / Pet Sitter here.

3. Sell your house, store or sell your stuff, leave Fido and Whiskers with your family and go.


The above three options are only necessary if you’re planning on leaving for a long trip.

If you’re just going for a month, there’s no reason to rent, sit or sell your house. Just have someone check on it every couple of days. Your pets can still be left with your friends or family and you don’t have to store or sell anything.

“Time is at once the most valuable and the most perishable of all our possessions.”

-John Randolph

We owned a home, a car and a Uhaul truckload of stuff before we packed up and left Canada.

We sold the house and car and had everything put into storage. This is not a difficult thing to do, but it’s the hardest of the above 3 options. Many people simply rent or keep their house looked after while they’re away. Owning a home and pets shouldn’t keep you from travelling.

Handcuffs House

Homes and pets may hinder, but never halt your dreams of travel.

I’m Comfortable at Home & Travel Isn’t Safe

Humans are creatures of habit and that is not always a bad thing.

Sometimes Dariece and I even enjoy a little bit of routine in our lives. But, if you’re yearning for something new (probably why you’re reading this) then try to differentiate between a routine and a rut.

Mindset Test: Are You Happy? Are You In A Routine Or A Rut?

Mind Test

At first, it’s a lot to take on. Planning for a trip, selling your things, saving money and leaving friends and family behind can be overwhelming. But, we are telling you from experience, the minute the wheels of the plane lift off and your adventure begins, a weight will be lifted that goes beyond the pressures of the planning process.

You’ll start to realize that your job was putting more stress on you than you thought. You’ll understand that the drama of day-to-day life at home was draining. You’ll begin to realize that YOU ARE RICH, even more so without futile possessions. You can do what you want when you want. And most of all you will be awash with a new sense of freedom.

Conclusion… there are no excuses.

When you break it down and really look at it, you are the only thing getting in the way of your travel dreams. Just because 90% of people are working through the year, doesn’t mean you have to too.

There are a ton of ways to travel for cheap or even for free. There are easy ways to save extra money. There are even more ways to make money while you’re on the road.


Now is the time when you look at yourself and decide: “Do I want to travel?” If the answer is yes, then all you have to do is take the necessary steps towards your dream.

If you start moving in the right direction, everything will fall into place… believe me! Just make the decision and go, we can tell you from experience that you will never regret it.

Still have some excuses? Enlighten us in the comments below!

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Nick Wharton Author Bio Picture

Written by

Nick Wharton

Nick is the co-founder, editor and author of Goats On The Road. He contributes to numerous other media sites regularly and shares his expert knowledge of travel, online entrepreneurship and blogging with the world whenever he can. He has been travelling and working abroad since 2008 and has more than 10 years of experience in online business, finance, travel and entrepreneurship.

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25 thoughts on “5 Reasons Why You Won’t Travel (And How To Fix Them)”

  1. Excellent! It’s shocking how many people convince themselves that these excuses or variations thereof are valid without really examining their options. However, I have an English teaching colleague who is travelling with her husband, three kids (aged 9-16) and a dog in a campervan, homeschooling as they go. So people finding ways to do these things despite the abundance of possible excuses are out there too!

  2. You’re absolutely right, there are many, many people out there who are following their dreams of travel regardless of having children, or other responsibilities at home. I love hearing stories like you listed above! Homeschooling while on the road is definitely doable 🙂

    Thanks for the comment.

  3. Well, I *do* travel so I’m not really the target audience of this post, but these posts always assume that the person’s #1 goal is travel and many times it’s actually #2 (or 3…). That doesn’t mean the person doesn’t want to travel, it just means something else is currently a higher priority, in which case, I do believe there are legitimate reasons to not be traveling. JMHO and I agree if travel is #1 then your points are valid.

  4. Echoing what Becky said above, really, it’s all about priorities. Most people don’t prioritize travel, which is fine. But then they say things like “You’re so lucky to be able to travel” or “I can never do that”, which is annoying for us who work hard to travel. It’s not luck, people! It’s priorities and a lot of hard work.

  5. Personally, I wouldn’t want to travel with young children, but I have nothing but admiration for those who do.

    We decided travelling now before we buy a house and while my husband was at a job crossroads was the best move for us (and fortunately I was able to take an unpaid leave).

  6. Well-said and so true! We sold our home, cars, left our two dogs with my sister-in-law, and stored our belongings with family over 2 years ago. Best and hardest decision I’ve ever made in my life! I used to think I was happy before but now I know how it feels to be truly happy and free. There was definitely a big adjustment period for me when we first started traveling and I wasn’t sure if it was really for me (even though my husband was instantly at ease with it). Just had to give it time to get in the groove of long-term travel. Hope you are enjoying sunshine and margaritas in Mexico! 🙂

  7. Well-said and so true! We sold our home, cars, left our two dogs with my sister-in-law, and stored our belongings with family over 2 years ago. Best and hardest decision I’ve ever made in my life! I used to think I was happy before but now I know how it feels to be truly happy and free. There was definitely a big adjustment period for me when we first started traveling and I wasn’t sure if it was really for me (even though my husband was instantly at ease with it). Just had to give it time to get in the groove of long-term travel. Hope you are enjoying sunshine and margaritas in Mexico! 🙂

  8. Ive got a really good reason. How about a whopping big criminal record. Try travelling with one of them. I suppose there is a number of developing countries that wont ask too many questions but still!!!!!

  9. I love this post!! We have had so many people give us the same excuses when we ask them about traveling. And that’s exactly what it is, an excuse! It comes down to whether you want to do it or not. If you really do, you will find away to brush all those “reason” aside to make it happen. Its not rocket science!

  10. Exactly Becky,

    That’s how this post was meant to be written: that travel is a priority in people’s lives, but they think that because of “X” number of responsibilities it’s not possible.

    Thank you for your comment 🙂

  11. Yes!

    That’s exactly what we think as well. It’s difficult to hear people say that “they’re so jealous” of what we’re doing…when we think that it’s possible for everyone to travel, if they really want to.

    Thanks for your comment 🙂

  12. Good for you guys, that’s a great time in life to travel! Many people prefer to travel “pre” children, houses and jobs. As long as you’re happy, then it’s all good 🙂

    Thanks for commenting!

  13. Good for you guys for taking the leap! It can be a very difficult decision and I know that I was really stressed out during the whole process. However, once on the road, I knew it was for me 🙂 Glad to hear you got into the groove of long-term travel!

    Thanks for the comment & Happy Travels to you guys.

  14. Thanks for the comment Nicole,

    Glad to hear we’re not the only ones hearing excuses from people who really want to travel. Just like you said, if they really wanted to travel, they would brush aside any “reasons” for not being able to.

  15. Hi,

    Great webiste! I’ve been following you for a while now and it is the most interesting travel blog I ever read. It’s been in my head for a long time to travel for a long period, but Indeed I have some excuses; Great job (although very stressful) and a boyfriend who’s not eager to go and travel for so long( he needs this “security” feeling more than I do). Although I am sure he would love it. So we make one “big” travel once a year for 3 weeks. Offcourse it is not enough. We have a mortgage aswell.. But my biggest fear is what if you come back? Especially financially? Travel changes you so much, I don’t think I could ever adapt again to the stressy life because off course it is better when you are travelling. But to come back with no house would scare me.. You guys never had that feeling?

  16. Hello Liz,

    Valid fears indeed. When we came back to Canada after 13 months in SE Asia and India, we were both in shock and depressed to be back home. For some people, they can go away and come back to a “normal” life quite easily. For us, travel changed us and sparked something inside of us and we knew we had to continue with that kind of lifestyle.

    We made sure to have a nest egg in the bank and worked really hard for one more year in Canada before taking off – we haven’t lived there since the beginning of 2011. I’m sure you would find a job if you went back, I’m sure you’d find somewhere to rent, or buy later on.

    For us personally, we just know that everything will work out for us and that we’re doing what we’re meant to be doing – if you’re happy in life, then you’re on the right track and everything will just fall into place. There are also many, many jobs you can do on the road to make some money.

    Or, if you’re too freaked out to sell your house, you could rent it out or have someone house sit for you? Not everyone wants to sell like we did, that’s for sure!

    Let me know if you have any other thoughts or questions 🙂 Thanks so much for following Liz!

  17. I know lots of people who have tonnes of money, time and yet – they don’t travel. Some people hate traveling or, they’re afraid? Or both?
    It’s weird how somehow those who could afford it better choose not to travel. But they find traveling complicated or “hard to attain” or “too expensive” and they never try…
    Anyway, it’s not compulsory to travel. It’s not like everyone in the World should.
    We travelers know why we’re doing it and I think there’s an emotional and mindset thing behind our desire. And perhaps there’s even more…

  18. Why would someone leave the pets behind? They are a serious responsibility, i found that suggestion almost offensive. There’s no need to be so selfish. It’s ok, you want to enjoy yor life, but, why abandon the pets that love you so much? One thing is leaving them for a couple of weeks but leving them behind for a log term trip its just disgusting.

  19. Hi Poppy,

    Many people take off on one month trips, upwards of 6 months and leave their pets behind with trustworthy house and pet sitters. We are part of a program called Trusted House Sitters, it’s a great way for people to be able to travel, while knowing that their pets are left in safe hands, in their own home and are being looked after.

    Thousands of people do this and although it would be hard to say goodbye to a pet for a month or so, it shouldn’t stop people from travelling if they want to.

  20. Hi again, I had to leave behind 4 dogs & a cat last April, when I went traveling for 3+ months. I didn’t find homes for 2 of the dogs until my last couple of days. When I returned, one dog had disappeared or died, another wasn’t happy at my neighbors house, even tho he had 4 of his own, so my English friends took her + the cat, and have decided to keep them permanently, which I am ok with.me. Also my home had been burgled & ransacked, which I half thought might happen, as it’s fairly remote. But it hasn’t stopped me from planning my next trip:-).
    How long are you in Bulgaria for, as I live in Varna, having moved from the village. I would surely like to meet up, if possible. Also, I have a bedroom I don’t use much, which you would be welcome to use. All very modern & Jaccuci bath, very relaxing.:-)
    Keep smiling, Richard

  21. Hi Richard,

    Thanks for your message. You should have hired a house sitter! Next time 🙂

    We are in Bulgaria just for a couple more days, heading to Sofia and then over to Macedonia. Thank you for the offer though.


  22. Love this! It is so true that you meet so many people who will make a million excuses about why they can’t travel. I managed to save as a student! It is possible to make enough for a trip especially if you are going to developing countries with lower costs of living. And anyone who uses the travel is not safe excuse is insane. Coming from London I feel no safer there than I do here in Asia. In fact, people are far more welcoming and friendly in this part of the world. No stiff upper lip!
    While, I cannot comment on traveling with children I would agree with what you state. I’ve been shocked by how many people we have met traveling with young children. We met a couple with 8 month old twins who were concluding a four month stint around Thailand and Malaysia. If you set your mind to it travel is entirely possible. The only thing stopping you is you!

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