Reasons to be a Backpacker
Over the past 40-50 years, being a backpacker has become a global trademark of a sort. The backpack has rapidly become a universal and unmistakable symbol for someone who is out to explore what the world has to offer. Backpackers come in many shapes, sizes, colors, nationalities, and creeds. People generally go backpacking for different reasons, each person having their own. If you need a little encouragement, here are a few fun reasons to be a backpacker. Happy Backpacking!
1.) You meet amazing people from around the world. One of the most rewarding things for me when I travel is not the places that I go, or the things that I do, it is the people who I met. I think it’s the most rewarding thing about traveling and definitely a great reason to be a backpacker.
2.) Backpacks are more economical. Not only are backpacks multi-functional, but they are also economical. Backpacks have lots of cool little compartments to put your things in and likely won’t have to be checked at the airport because of the fact that they are malleable. They can be squeezed into overhead compartments, and things can be easily accessed if you have to dump weight.
3.) You get to sample exotic things. Another great benefit of traveling is you get to sample exotic and ‘foreign’ things you definitely cannot find at your neighborhood grocery store. Food, drinks, bugs, animals, there are all out there somewhere.
4.) Backpacks are typically lighter than hauling around suitcases. Even if they aren’t particularly lighter, they make you more weight-conscious because you have to carry what you bring. So, therefore you end up bringing fewer useless items.
5.) Your backpack doubles over as a great pillow. I’ve had to use my backpack as a pillow several times over the years. You never know whether you’re in a train station or stuck waiting somewhere a backpack is a handy nap aid. I’ve had to go there a few times 🙂
6.) You get to see sunsets like this. Being a backpacker gives you some unprecedented free time that gives you an opportunity to do whatever you want to do when you want. From sunsets to sunrises, you’ll get to experience them first-hand.
7.) Respect. Being a backpacker is like being a student. People feel your pain, they know you don’t have a lot of money, and they are more willing to help you along the way.
8.) You end up in some random places. Seriously, have you ever heard some of the stories that backpackers come up with? No self-respecting tourist could ever end up in the same places and situations that most backpackers do. No plans, no worries, just experiencing things as they come. Life’s good.
9.) You feel like your on an adventure. Let’s face it, backpacks are the universal sign of adventure. Every time I strap on my backpack and give it a good fasten I cannot help but smile fore I know that an adventure is coming my way.
10.) You don’t have to worry about those funny rolling suitcases. Do you remember the days when you, as a backpacker, ran through the airport with a rolling suitcase? I do too… it was kinda weak. Now, your backpack is strapped to you for optimal performance.
11.) You learn that all you really need is a backpack (or yourself). One thing that backpacking has taught me is that I really need very little in life to be happy. I do not need a lot of material things or a stockpile of clothes. When I travel via backpack I am perfectly content with just the clothes on my back. When you backpack, you realize that your home can fit in a small bag.
12.) You’ll be challenged. This may not be a perk of backpacking for everyone, but for me it is. One of my major reasons for traveling is to be challenged. Challenges and obstacles in life are what help us to grow, without them we will likely never reach the bare minimum of our potential. Backpacking is not always easy, sometimes it is easier than others, but overall it will likely challenge who you are in more ways than one.
13.) You’ll have experiences that no tourist will. I am not going to argue about the difference between tourists and travelers in this article, but (with much explanation) I think that there is one. It is more in the mindset of the experience that I find the difference to exist. People travel for different reasons, and that is fine. However, backpacking will bring you to experiences that you won’t find in any tourist brochures: the real world, up close and personal.
14.) FREEDOOMMM – Backpacking can be a very liberating experience. Whether it is the fact that you have little plans or just ‘go with the flow’ backpacking gives you an opportunity to be open to change and have new experiences. Skydiving anyone?
15.) As a backpacker you’ll understand this evolution of the backpacker. Do you?
What are your thoughts?
What is your list of reasons to be a backpacker? What are your reasons to go backpacking?
**Tags: reasons why tourists backpack, reasons to backpack **
Thanks for stopping by! – Andy
Another great article Andy and I love the sunset picture.
With a backpack you are also likely to keep fit with carrying all that weight around and as you run for your train/plane/boat.
That is one of my favorite sunsets as well! You raise a great point that I forgot to include, backpacking definitely keeps you fit. True story. Definitely got your emphasis on as you Run for your… << The life of a backpacker.
I’ve never backpacked across Europe or Asia or anywhere ‘abroad’ – just my home province of Alberta a bit when I was a teen. 5, 8, & 14 are the ones I noticed most from my little Albertan adventure 🙂
Backpacking at home can be a great experience as well Kirsten. I think that number 14 is one of the best aspects of backpacking. Freedom is a great feeling. Thanks for stopping by, I like your site!
I definitely agree with some of your points, for example the fact that you do meet great people when backpacking is trues, and the fact that is more convenient is also true, in fact this may be one of the main reasons people backpack in the first place, I doubt people would go backpacking if you they could afford top luxury hotel, but you also say things like “you get to try exotic fruit?” Mhhhhh, does that mean that if you are not backpacking you don’t? But anyway, the other points you make are valid. Cheers
You definitely meet some great people when backpacking, but you’d be surprised. I have actually met wealthy people that preferred backpacking-style traveling to a top luxury hotel. In regards to what you say about “get to try exotic fruit” I didn’t mean to imply that you don’t if you travel differently just that you are more likely to encounter these things when not on a set plan.
Thanks for stopping by!
I can totally relate to #8. Being a backpacker present in the moment can take you to random places depending who you meet on your journey. That’s what makes the experience an adventure of a lifetime!
Definitely Mig! Same for me, I love the randomness of travel, it keeps it more than interesting.
Hadn’t thought about there being a difference between being a tourist and a traveler, but I like the idea that there is one (and I agree, too)! Would love to hear more of your thoughts on that:)
merrystuber recently posted…French word of the day: escarpins / stilettos
Hey! I believe that there is one, but I have been called names before for saying so. I will eventually complete my post on the difference between a tourist and a traveler. It has been done before, but I´d like to put in my 2 cents.
Backpacking is the only time a feel like a genuine free spirit – not a worry in the world and just going with the flow!
It is an incredible feeling Craig!