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Is traveling and being exposed to other people and cultures important and why?

skotmorrison 4 June 22

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It's the most important and effective education you can receive.


Yes because once you travel you realise theres more alike than different. Most people everywhere, in their own little lives are trying just to get by and to make things better for their kids

Amisja Level 8 June 22, 2018

It is not important. You can live a truly educated and meaningful life without traveling. Of course, traveling can be an enriching experience, adding perspective to one's life, but travel is NOT a prerequisite to wisdom or empathy. I know people who have never traveled, and are compassionate, intelligent people. I know people who travel all the time, and are insufferable morons. Like anything else, it is what you make of it.

Great comment. I agree.


A chance to see how other people live. To see that my life and the culture I come from are not the only way to do things.


We have a whole nation of people who have never been exposed to people different than they are, and look where it has gotten us. I'm very proud of having lived so many different places. Japan was amazing for a 19 year old wild child that I was. Traveling makes you question your assumptions and learn that "normal" is imaginary.


Yes, because can improve a lot your life experience, open your mind and can give you the ideas at which you never have thought.


Just got back from Ukraine. Not what I expected at all. The people are just like us other than a few cultural differences. Everytime I go abroad my world view is radically altered. I think traveling to other countries and cultures is good for the mind and character. It helps cut through media propaganda and prejudice.

Aren't there some sections of the Ukraine that are fascist now? I read about some streets being renamed in honour of famous fascists.


@Ellatynemouth I'll ask my Ukrainian friend and get back to you.

@Ellatynemouth I was only in Kiev. I saw no signs of fascism but that doesn't mean it isn't there. My jewish local companion didn't have anything to say about it so I'm leaning toward no.

@Ellatynemouth correction: She says Fascism IS on the rise in the west end of the country. But not in Kiev.


“The insight of a man certainly slows down his anger, and it is beauty on his part to pass over transgression.”​—Proverbs 19:11.
It's from the Bible. The book has a few gems in it.
Going to other countries helps you understand why they do things differently. My situation was different from an American learning new values abroad - I was an Irishman in America trying to understand why Americans did things the way they do. I think two things are needed - time and an open mind. I don't think a short vacation will cut it.


I think so. Especially for us Americans. We are so insulated and ignorant of difference, and often afraid of it.

It has also been true for some time now that international travel does not have to be that much more costly than domestic travel -- so that's no excuse.

I've had the privilege of visiting 8 foreign countries (not counting the ones I passed through in transit) including Vietnam and Turkey as well as Europe and North America -- some more than once. It has been enriching.

I so agree! I was fortunate that my father was military and traveled a lot. You learn how lucky you are and how so many things are the same but with just a different flair! My dad made us live in the culture...eating the foods, learning the language, etc. Glad he did...shrunk the world for me and got me interested in global politics and finance.Did you like Turkey? I lived in Ankara but Istanbul was my favorite...and the beaches on the Med!

@thinktwice We liked Turkey very much. We were there 3 weeks, based in Istanbul with a week side trip to Cappadocia.

It was a few months after the Taksim Square uprising and Erdogan was about where Trump is today. I wonder if where Erdogan is now is a harbinger of things to come in the US. I hope not. Doesn't look good to me though.


Absolutely, and what had been happening in America the last two years is a prime example why. Experiencing other cultures - even if it is as a tourist - helps break down the fear and build empathy.

GwenC Level 7 June 22, 2018

Has anyone ever noticed that Europeans travel all over the world, no matter there social or economic status

This is incorrect. There are some in Britain who cannot afford the train fare that many take for granted.

I have friends in Europe who can not afford to visit me, and I can not afford to visit them.


Travel is not a bad thing but until it ceases being prohibitively expensive it's a privilege and a luxury, and cannot be a necessity.

Sure there are ways of doing so that appear inexpensive but it all adds up to a total that most people, especially Americans, can't afford.


Yes because you learn people are very much alike and different than one might guess. You learn their culture the way they think and see the beauty of other places and how they are cared for.

Marine Level 8 June 22, 2018

I think the Antony Bourdains of this world, who hop from country to country, staying in luxury hotels are not experiencing the culture. They are on safari.

Likewise any tourist who is insulated against what most of the locals have to live with, are not really experiencing the culture.

A friend of mine once went to the Gambia. Outside of the hotel he was struck by the poverty. The hotel did not represent Gambia's culture. Outside of the hotel did.

One would need to live in a country for a while and to speak the language to feel the culture authentically.

Had a similar experience in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The hotel was an insulated compound and immediately outside its walls was a ghetto. Was only there briefly and didn't get to see nearly as much as I would've liked.


It probably is important. Once you know about another people and their culture it puts a human connection on the issues that plague the world. I think it would affect foreign policy in the sense that the people of a country would be less willing to support a government that wants to harm other people in other countries when it comes to economic strategy etc. Leaders of certain governments probably wouldn't give a shit either way though.


I think it is. When people are exposed to different cultures you learn new ays toi look at the world, which leads to innovation and progress. Learning about different perspectives or ways of looking at things unlocks a greater human potential.


Yes, so long as one stays in the culture long enough to be truly immersed in it. That immerson gives one the experience which enables the person to see their own culture without blinders on.




Yes very definitely to learn about other people, places and cultures. Helps to get out and see what else is in the vast world.


It isn’t just important, in my opinion it is essential. I fear for the future when so many barriers which had come down at great cost, and much bloodshed, are now being raised again. The fear of “the other”, and the resurgence of extreme nationalism is beyond worrying, it is terrifying! The best way to eliminate fear of strangers is to see them in their own natural then become the “stranger in a strange land”. By wearing the other person’s shoes, and being a “foreigner “ for a change can give us some humility and make us realise that we humans are all the same under the skin. We are all born and die in the same manner, it’s just a pure accident of birth which part of the world it happens to be.


I agree with all of You

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