Here are 8 traits of what truly defines a world traveler.

Here are 8 traits of what truly defines a world traveler.

The term “world traveler” conjures up images of intrepid explorers, jet-setters, and travelers who have journeyed to the far corners of the globe. But what truly defines a world traveler? Is it the number of countries visited, the miles logged, or the passport stamps collected? In this blog post, I share what makes someone a world traveler, going beyond the surface to explore the heart and soul of this unique breed of adventurer.

Curiosity and Open-Mindedness:

At the core of a world traveler’s identity is an insatiable curiosity about the world and an open-minded approach to different cultures. World travelers thrive on learning and experiencing new things, embracing the unknown enthusiastically rather than in fear.


World travelers possess a remarkable ability to adapt to diverse environments, whether navigating bustling city streets, trekking through remote jungles or savoring the tranquility of a secluded beach. They can find comfort and excitement in a wide range of settings.

Appreciation of Diversity:

A true world traveler celebrates diversity, recognizing that the world is a tapestry of cultures, languages, cuisines, and landscapes. They seek to understand and respect these differences, appreciating the unique beauty in each corner of the globe.

Storytelling and Sharing:

World travelers are often natural storytellers. They relish recounting their adventures, not to boast but to inspire and connect with others. Their tales aim to ignite the spark of wanderlust in those who listen, encouraging others to explore the world.

Responsible Travel:

A world traveler is acutely aware of the impact their journeys can have on the planet and its people. They strive to travel responsibly, minimizing their ecological footprint, supporting local communities, and respecting the environment and cultures they encounter.

Seeking Authentic Experiences:

Rather than just checking off tourist hotspots, world travelers seek authentic experiences. They engage with locals, try regional dishes, and immerse themselves in the everyday life of the places they visit. They understand that authentic connections are formed through genuine interactions.

Lifelong Learning:

World travelers never stop learning. They are students of the world, continually expanding their knowledge, language skills, and cultural understanding. Travel is their classroom, and each trip offers valuable lessons.

Embracing Challenges:

Challenges are not obstacles but opportunities for growth for world travelers. They welcome the unexpected, understanding that the most memorable experiences often arise from overcoming difficulties.

Ultimately, being a world traveler is not defined by a checklist of countries visited or a passport filled with stamps. It’s about the mindset and attitude with which one approaches the world. It’s a commitment to lifelong learning, a celebration of diversity, and a dedication to responsible and authentic travel experiences. So, whether you’ve explored a dozen countries or just a few, you are indeed a world traveler if you possess these qualities. Embrace the adventure, and may your journeys continue to enrich your life and the lives of those you encounter along the way.

Why I love living in Singapore?

Why I love living in Singapore?

It’s my second time living in Singapore as an ex-pat.  I told my husband that if he ever got an opportunity to live here again, he needed to sign on the dotted line; my approval was a given.  I did not expect to be back here again, but I love living on the little red dot.  If you’ve ever thought about living in Singapore, here are a few reasons why you might find it appealing.


Singapore is a city/state and an island, also known as the little red dot.  Oddly the name was coined as an insult during the 1997 Asian financial crisis but has since been embraced by Singaporeans.  The island is about 50km or just over 31 miles from end to end.  It has a population of just over 5 million, with over 1 million non-residents or ex-pats.  It has been ranked as one of the most expensive places in the world to live.  Most people in Singapore speak English, Chinese, Malay, and Tamil.  Not speaking another language is not a deterrent to living in Singapore, as English is widely spoken here.  Additionally, Singlish, an English-based creole, is also a standard dialect and very easy to understand after a while.

Singapore and travel

The location of Singapore is great for traveling.  You can get to Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, or Vietnam within two hours.  Many flights to other parts of Asia, Australia, and Europe are also available.  It is a great place to explore all the beautiful destinations of Asia, and it has one of the best airports in the world.  Traveling to and from Singapore can be challenging with the ever-changing travel restrictions due to Covid.  Currently, travel to Singapore requires a travel pass application, and transit through Singapore is only by approved airlines.  Therefore, please do your research if you plan to travel to Singapore.

Singapore is safe

If you ask anyone about living in Singapore, safety will be one of their top answers.  I loved raising my children here in Singapore because it was so safe.  They could get in a taxi or public transportation without worries or concerns.  I even left my wallet in a taxi years ago, and it was delivered back to me with an apology.  Be aware that Singapore is considered safe because it has very strict and harsh laws against even minor crimes like spitting or shoplifting.  Visitors need to be very careful as things you might not consider in your country can land you in jail in Singapore.  However, low crime means no crime, so awareness is always helpful.

Singapore food

Singapore has some of the most diverse and delicious foods, and there is something to meet everyone’s taste.  Malaysian, Indian, and Chinese food is plentiful.  But Korean, Japanese, American, and European food choices are also readily available.  Although Singapore is expensive, you can find great food at the many Hawker centers throughout the island.  Here you will find many cheap food stalls with great food and something to fit every budget.  One of my favorites is the Newton Hawker center famously portrayed in the movie “Crazy Rich Asians” as it is within walking distance from me.  I often have an Indian feast here on the weekends.

I could go on about why I love Singapore, but I like to keep it short and sweet, so I’ll leave the rest for later.  Have you ever visited Singapore?  Would you like to?  Please drop me a comment and let me know.

Travel during the Christmas holidays.

Travel during the Christmas holidays.

Travel during the Christmas holidays can be stressful with extra crowds and often densely packed airplanes.  With COVID, holiday travel takes on an even more stressed environment. However, it’s also a chance to visit family and friends, and maybe spend the holiday in a new destination.  The holidays are celebrated worldwide, and they may not be as meaningful in some destinations. However, foreign travel allows travelers to experience Christmas celebrations shared across the globe.  Here are a few tips that may help you navigate traveling during the holidays with less stress.

Pre-trip planning

Plan accordingly and know your flight times. In addition, prepare for extra airport crowds.  Most airlines advise getting to the airport 2 hours before a domestic flight and three hours before an international trip.  Typical airport rush hour times are between 5 am to 7 am and 4 pm to 6 pm.  If you plan on traveling around those times, adding some extra airport travel time would be wise.

TSA Pre-check/Clear

Another way to plan for holiday travel is to pre-register for many travel programs that help the travel process go more smoothly.  TSA Pre-check helps to expedite screening at the airport.  It sure helps not to have to remove shoes, belts, laptops, or light-wear jackets as you go through security.  Clear is another program that can help expedite the screening process.  Unlike TSA Pre-check, verification is done through eyes or face, making for a touchless process.

Travel registration

Many foreign destinations now offer travel registration.  Part of any travel research is the know before you go tips available on many country websites.  This research helps travelers know of any visa requirements, but in this time of COVID, it is beneficial also to be aware of any health travel guidelines for your destination.

Travel insurance

As with any travel you purchase, travel insurance is vital for any unexpected travel delays or interruptions.  Now more than ever, it’s essential that your travel insurance include COVID medical insurance.  Travel insurance not only protects the traveler in the event of a COVID infection, but many foreign destinations now require it before allowing entry into the country.

Embassy registration

Many travelers are unaware of the protections they can receive from their government when issues arise in a foreign country. US citizens can find helpful safety and general information about foreign destinations on STEP, The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.  It also helps the embassy, friends, and family contact you more easily in an emergency.

These travel tips can be helpful all year round, but especially during the travel holidays, it’s essential to be well prepared. Are you planning on traveling this holiday season? Are you prepared and ready? I’d like to know.

Traveling to Thailand-The Thailand Pass

Traveling to Thailand-The Thailand Pass

COVID has created many changes in traveling, and I’m happy that many countries have started to open their borders to travelers.  As I’ve mentioned before, now more than ever, traveling takes planning.  As of November 1, 2021, Thailand has reopened to travelers with a no-quarantine option.  Here are a few tips if you plan to travel to Thailand.

No quarantine.

No quarantine entry does not genuinely mean quarantine-free.  Thailand is happy to accept fully vaccinated travelers under three programs. Test and go, Sandbox, and Alternative quarantine.  In any program, travelers must complete at least a one-day quarantine.  With the Test and Go program, travelers must stay at least one night in an approved hotel and wait for their pre-paid COVID test results to return as negative.  Only a negative result will allow the traveler to move around inside Thailand.  With the Sandbox program, travelers must stay in a sandbox destination within Thailand for seven days before moving through other parts of Thailand after a negative COVID test result.  With the Alternative program, travelers must stay for 7 to 10 days in an approved hotel and test negative before being free to leave the hotel.

Thailand pass

The Thailand pass is required for all travelers to Thailand, both citizens, and foreigners.  It ensures that travelers meet all the entry requirements before arrival in Thailand.  It is free to apply for the Thailand Pass, but the system is rather cumbersome and rigorous. Some service providers can complete the process for travelers for a fee, and I highly recommend it for those who do not want the stress.  The response time is from 3 to 7 days to get a response, so I highly recommend preparing well in advance.

Thailand Pass requirements.

The requirements for the Thailand pass include 

  • Passport
  • Proof of a WHO-approved vaccination
  • Proof of at least $50,000 U.S. of COVID insurance
  • Payment confirmation of one night’s stay at an approved hotel
  • Copy of flight booking
  • Copy of visa, if required

Travel requirements

  • To be able to travel to Thailand, travelers will also need,
  • A negative PCR test to be taken at least 72 hours before departure
  • Payment confirmation of the PCR test you will take after arriving in Thailand
  • Thailand’s MorChana App to record the results of your rapid test
  • Cannot have visited any of the countries not on the approved list within the past 21 days.

In short, travel to Thailand is not as easy as it once was.  The new Thailand Pass online registration system is not very easy to navigate.  I found that some credentials had to be formatted correctly for the system to accept them. For example, some documents could be PDF, but others needed to be in Jpeg format.  Even though I am an experienced traveler, it took me three tries before I could complete the process, in addition to two phone calls with over an hour of holding time.  

Post-COVID travel has proven to be a bit daunting. Has it stopped you from traveling? I’d like to know.

Singapore revisited.

Singapore revisited.

I spent twenty-three years in the airline industry as a flight attendant. In many of those first years, I was often the only person of color on the crew. Therefore, my experiences in being looked at differently have been more than eye-opening.   Being back here in Singapore has once again opened my eyes to the possibilities of a multicultural society.

Singapore is a multicultural society.  Chinese, Malay, Indian, and others (CMIO).  Here in Singapore, I am other, and my color is not as noticeable as in the US. Here I am simply different.  Different in the kind of way that’s the same but different.  Here the racial harmony that’s supposed to exist is reflected in the many cultures that co-exist.  

Singapore became a sovereign nation in 1965.  The following year the four racial groups CMIO were expected to be treated separately but equally, and there was to be no discrimination or favoritism of any race.  In Singapore, all races, religious practices, customs, and traditions are accepted. As I came to understand it, the Singaporean way is reflected in the appearance of social harmony.

In Singapore, I see co-existence but not people that intermix with each other.  Here race is downplayed yet elevated at the same time.  As a black ex-pat, I often get mistaken for African descent, and the distinction is a relatively common occurrence here.  When I go into public spaces, I’m seen as other.  When I speak, the recognition of my racial identity becomes apparent in the subsequent interactions I have.

I have experienced many acts of travel bias and microaggression.  My experience here in Singapore is much the same but different.  Often, my experiences have left me with a less than pleasant travel experience.  Multiculturalism is embraced here in Singapore, and the diversity I see here tends to be an aspect of Singapore I simply love about Singapore.

My first excursion in Singapore to end my quarantine was with a taxi driver. A typical Singaporean whose first attempt at conversation is not unlike many I experience. “Where are you from” I’m often asked? As an immigrant, my answer can be as deep or varied as I decide. I’m from an island like this. I’m from the Caribbean. I’m an American.  All are true, just as with the many aspects of Singaporean culture I experience— Chinese, Malay, Indian, Singaporean, ex-pat.  My story is unique and varied.

We’re all different, yet the same. A friend once told me to see the human race, not black people, not old people, not Asians, not fat people, not old people.  I choose to do that, and here in Singapore, that is ok.

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