5 Practical Things I Miss While Shoestring Traveling

Written by Marco Morawec

Topics: Featured, Travel Advice

Long-term shoestring traveling means giving up comforts from back home. Being without those comforts is exactly the point of traveling long-term. You don’t want all those silly comforts of modern civilization, have all the distractions and simply live in the moment. Because only when you strip yourself free of all comforts can you feel free to move  and wander the world without as much of a thought in your mind as: “where do I go next?”

It’s a great space of mind to be in, however, every once in a while you are reminded of those comforts and realize that you are missing them indeed. Even though it’s hard to admit and I’ve been traveling for many years now, at times I do miss certain comforts of home too. So here you go, my 5 practical things I miss the most when traveling long-term.


I love to read books and I do a ton of reading while I travel. But when I’m on the road in foreign countries I usually don’t have a great Library close by. I used to make a real effort looking for libraries in bigger cities. But my luck with foreign libraries usually runs out when I realize that there are no English or German books, all the Spanish books I’d like to read are checked out, and I couldn’t even get a guest library card to take a single book with me. So after being burnt and leaving foreign libraries empty handed way to many times I kind of gave up finding great libraries when traveling on a shoestring.

Not having great libraries available abroad is another reason Why Traveling with The Amazon Kindle Rocks. So rather than looking for libraries I surf the web and buy all my favorite books on my Amazon Kindle.


I don’t know what it is with me and fridges, but one of my favorite things to do is come home and open the fridge. After striping off my shoes, the first things I do is  see what’s inside the fridge. It’s not necessarily that I’m hungry, but I just love seeing a full fridge. Don’t ask me why. I don’t know, but I think it’s me dreaming up my next home cooked meal.

So when I’m on the road, I usually don’t have my own fridge to open up and look inside. Or if there is a fridge, it’s in a backpackers kitchen stuffed to the brims with grocery bags and a foul smell from forgotten leftovers. Not the kind I want to open up and peek inside.


Cooking and preparing food is like meditation to me. If I stand at the kitchen counter chopping away onions and tomatoes or preparing dough for home made fresh pasta my mind completely unwinds. I feel so relaxed and happy in that moment that I don’t even care about all the dishes I have to wash afterwards. But what I need to cook is a somewhat well equipped kitchen. And that’s hard to find on the road. Yes, there are many kitchens in backpackers around the world, but often times the knifes are dull and the cutting boards are non-existent. That’s why one of the first things I do when I’m back home is going into the kitchen, big smile on my face and happily cooking whatever I can find in the fridge.

Public Swimming Pool

I’m an Oceans lover. I love to surf, spearfish and play in the Ocean. The next best thing after being in the Ocean is jumping into a swimming pool. But that’s the problem when you are traveling in many parts of the world, there are no public swimming pools and the few private ones you can find are budget-busting expensive. And that’s exactly the moment when being a Shoestring Traveler sucks. Can I really justify spending as much for 2 hours in a swimming pool as two full meals would cost me? You decide for yourself, but I usually opt for a cold shower instead.

Solid Internet

Finding internet is usually not a problem while traveling. However, you’d be surprised how many times I was surfing in Indonesia without any internet around the touristy areas. Just take the center of Kuta in Bali for example. In the entire Poopies Two Street there are only two hotels who include free Wi-Fi. The remaining 14 Hotels don’t have any internet at all. Luckily there is a great place close by that comes with free Wi-Fi if you’re drinking one of their delicious Avocado shakes.

Now it’s your turn, what do you miss the most from home when traveling?



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