John, the author behind Travel Rinse Repeat juggles between maintaining his corporate job as a Management Consultant and his passion for travelling and exploring the world. His blog is a documentation of his trips around USA and to other countries.
But before you click away, check out my short interview with John.
How did you discover your passion for travelling?
“I took many trips with my family when I was growing up, but it wasn’t until I was 18 and planned my first trip with friends (and no parents) to Yellowstone National Park. For the first time, I wasn’t just following my parents wherever they went but was in charge of determining what we would do and see, where we’d stay, and what we were eating.
It seemed like a big responsibility at the time but once the trip began it was an entirely different travel experience than any I’d had before. Not because of the destination, but because of my active involvement in the planning of the trip. It gave me a much greater appreciation of travel as I had put a much larger time investment into it. I was responsible for the experiences I was having, and that was a very exciting feeling.”
What’s the most horrible experience that you’ve had on the road?
“I’ve been fortunate to not have anything too miserable affect me directly. However, when I was traveling with my sister in Japan, she came down with a mysterious illness that was affecting her vision. Any bright sunlight was absolutely miserable for her so we had to keep her indoors as much as possible in a dark room.
I would shuttle out to the streets of Tokyo to grab her food and whatever else she needed. At one point, I had to try and mime ‘eye patch’ to a pharmacy owner – that was actually a pretty humorous experience. Thankfully, it was towards the end of our trip but it made the flight back home a little more stressful.”
What’s the best travel experience that you’ve ever had?
“Rather than pick a specific destination or activity (there are too many to choose from), I’m going to say something mushy and say that meeting new friends has been my favorite travel experience. I’ve met some great friends while traveling that I still keep in regular contact with today, and I’m extremely thankful for that.”
What’s the biggest realization that you’ve got out of travelling?
“I set out on my first ever solo trip to Denmark right after college. Before leaving, I was absolutely terrified. I didn’t speak the language, didn’t know where I was going, and didn’t know anyone in the country But after the first week when I realized that the majority of my fears and concerns were unfounded and that I was capable of traveling on my own, I felt a fleeting moment of pride – until a pigeon pooped directly into my water bottle.”
What keeps you going? What keeps you motivated?
“There is an incredible level of excitement I feel when visiting a new place. I can wake up earlier, stay out later, and walk further distances when traveling than I ever can back at home. I actually talked about this feeling when I wrote about why I was visiting Santa Barbara. Traveling provides an incredible burst of energy that I crave – maybe that’s why I can’t take relaxing beach vacations….”
This is a silly and hypothetical one. If you would be given a chance to travel with a popular person or a celebrity, who would it be and why?
“Since it’s not specified whether the person has to be living or dying, I’d have to go with Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain. He was quite the traveler in his day, and I’d love to hear his thoughts on travel today.
I also think traveling with him would lead to some very interesting discussions. I know he and I disagree on some accounts, such as on the beauty of the Old State Capitol in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.”
Where’s your favourite place in this planet and why?
“I love my home state of Colorado. Spectacular natural beauty, diversity of landscapes and urban areas, a unique sub-American culture…if we had just had an ocean and some better food, there’d be little reason to leave! I think it is an amazing place and there is always so much to discover.”
What’s your best tip for newbie travellers?
“Register for your frequent flyer and hotel programs right away and put ALL your spending on points earning credit cards. I only really got into the points collecting game a year ago, and I shudder to think of all the free flights, hotel rooms, and rental cars I’ve missed out on over the years. Also, try to stick to one airline and hotel brand if you can. It’s worth paying a few dollars more to recognize the benefits of loyalty programs.”
What’s the funniest and silliest thing you’ve ever done while travelling?
“My friends and I tend to make any road trip we take a ‘spring break’ road trip, no matter the time of year or the location we’re going. For as long as I can remember, anytime we got in the car for an extended drive, we would make signs that said ‘Spring Break or Bust’, yell ‘Spring Break! Whoooo!’ out the window, and exclaim to other confused travelers how excited we were for Spring Break.”
“Travel Rinse Repeat Travel Blog was started as a way to chronicle my life on the road. I work as a management consultant and that means that I travel almost non-stop. However, I don’t get the chance to travel full time, so I have to figure out ways to see and enjoy the places I visit in the evenings or weekends since I work all day during the week. I have learned to make the most of these work-related travel opportunities, and have since turned that into my travel motto – making the most of every travel opportunity.” – John of Travel Rinse Repeat
Editor’s Note: All pics are provided by John.