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  1. #21
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    I see shitloads of americans backpacking in Europe, especially when I use hostels, especially during the summer months.
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  2. #22
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    I see shitloads of americans backpacking in Europe, especially when I use hostels, especially during the summer months.
    Personally I never saw it as uncommon when I was traveling; and it's been a majority of Americans in a few places I've been (Costa Rica is one).

    (It's also a reason I DON'T like staying at hostels, lol... I tend not to really enjoy the backpacking scene)
    "...On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him." - James Joyce

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  3. #23
    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    I see shitloads of americans backpacking in Europe, especially when I use hostels, especially during the summer months.
    It seems like a lot because they're all there and you notice them.

    Fact remains though that comparatively few actually end up doing that, though certain demographics tend to do it more I suppose, it's still a fraction of a fraction of a fraction.

  4. #24
    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    Well, accommodations in America are expensive and hard to come by. People are expected to be independent and goal-oriented. Not to mention that most people in America don't trust each other, and pretty much rely on their own ability to hold a job, or their parent/significant other's. It's hard to just up and leave your situation here because of how things work, with all the bureaucracy, social structure, etc. Also, backpacking is often associated with vagrancy, likely because of the Great Depression.
    This is probably a big part of it. A lot of people feel they must be tied down to their home base.

    Also there might actually be a fear of getting stranded. Even I some times forget that being in a strange place isn't necessarily the end of the world, because here if you don't have connections and a long term occupation, that means you're a bum and you're pretty much screwed. There's a good chance that nobody is going to help you, and if they do it often ends up being in a subhuman kind of way.

    So it can be hard to imagine being able to survive while mobile because here if you run out of money for example and don't have a connection to get more (e.g. a steady job) you can end up screwed.

  5. #25
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    Wow, almost every person I know in my age group has been backpacking. I guess my sample is biased, though (mostly university grads, mostly middle-ish class). I didn't realize it was less common in Americans (if it is). I haven't yet, but plan to do some travelling in a few years, whether that's backpacking or wwoofing or something similar.
    -end of thread-

  6. #26
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    I'm wondering if anyone else has noticed this and, if so, to what you attribute it?
    Americans leave home as soon as they turn 18, are expected to be independent adults, and they never go back to live with their parents. With the cost of living here, I don't see how they can financially afford do both, unless they delay their entrance into adulthood and fall behind their entire peer group (which isn't just an issue of perception, but of losing one's healthy social support system and then coming back home to a younger peer group).

    The Commonwealth nations are way more forgiving with supporting the entrance into adulthood, and I think that gives time/space/social flex to backpack.
    *You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.
    *Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason once accepted, despite your changing moods.
    C.S. Lewis

  7. #27
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Usehername View Post
    Americans leave home as soon as they turn 18, are expected to be independent adults, and they never go back to live with their parents. With the cost of living here, I don't see how they can financially afford do both, unless they delay their entrance into adulthood and fall behind their entire peer group (which isn't just an issue of perception, but of losing one's healthy social support system and then coming back home to a younger peer group).
    The whole self-sufficiency aspect of American culture prob. plays into it. I know that it was kind of engrained in me growing up, and it also definitely played into my own career path and my NOT wanting to live with my parents come age 23-25, thus I turned away from a career that would have required me to do so for several years, because I wouldn't have been able to afford my own place otherwise. (and admittedly, I also wasn't willing to live with several roommates or take on multiple jobs -so my own 'standards'/desires also limited things) And there's no question cost of living is high.

    That said, I started traveling out of the country when I was living alone AND making a 30K salary at the time; it's possible to do it on less.

    So a lot too ties into ones' priorities and budgeting abilities, and what one is willing to forgo (potentially going against cultural expectations / what most peers are doing) to be able to travel, if it's desired -- i.e. one doesn't have to be making loads of money to be able to do it; one just isn't going to be going to concerts, out to eat, or buying shoes very often .
    "...On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him." - James Joyce

    My Photography and Watercolor Fine Art Prints!!! Cascade Colors Fine Art Prints
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