In my experience, finding the wherewithal to buy plane tickets rests squarely in your ability to put the obstacles in perspective to see how easy it actually is. There are the online travel communities and supportive road veterans, website pages with voices from the cloud always guiding your finger toward the purchase button, regaling you with tales of sunsets and sparkling Taj Mahals.
Still, with all the tools at your disposal sometimes the decision to travel comes down to that simple shift in perspective — a way to see yourself actually doing it. That’s why you need to compare it with something perhaps little closer to home, something forever attached to the traditional American vacation maybe, something like going to Disneyland.
Today here’s some proof that traveling the world is just as easy as that simple holiday pastime: a trip to Disneyland.
Chances are you don’t live in Anaheim (if you do, let me be the first to offer my condolences) and because Anaheim is also probably a decent distance away, you’re destined to fly there.
The same as an international flight, only worse because you don’t end up in an inspiring new country where the language is different, the food is unique and the money is colorful, and while there may be a shortage of roller-coasters and princesses, rest assured you’ll never be at a loss for excitement.
Sure the hours of the flight may be longer, and the price may be (a little) higher, but have confidence that whatever extra cost you pay will be directly proportionate with how much more you’re going to love the trip. I dare you to say that about any famous Southern California theme park.
These days Disneyland ain’t cheap, and while you may parry with the “international travel ain’t either, buddy”, a quick comparison will show you that Disneyland can be far more expensive than any international trip if you look at it on a daily basis.
- Admission for a family of 4 for 1 day at Disneyland: ≈ $320
- Accommodation & meals for a family of 4 for one day in Cambodia: ≈ $45
Of course you’ll likely spend more for an extended trip overseas than a quick holiday at a storied family fun park, but if you keep that in perspective (see above) you’ll see how apparent the value of international travel – you’re getting a whole lot more experience for your money. And that, my friends, is priceless.
This is a deciding factor for many people and cannot be discounted — just the idea of mental duress can make you give up the whole booking enterprise before it’s begun.
It’s necessary to bear in mind things like having your nerves tested at every turn, to always be looking out for your belongings, the frustrating miscommunications, to be subjected to tedious haggling over trivial items, the constant disorientation, and that’s before you even make it to the Disneyland parking lot!
But it’s true Disneyland does have the ironic ability to make you want to pull the heads off every Mickey Mouse doll you see. Trust me, the cheap souvenirs you’ll buy at the Great Wall of China will be so much more treasured than the jumbo plastic Icee® Freeze cup you picked up in front of the Thunder Mountain Railroad.
Hotels cost too much around Disneyland. It’s a fact. So if you’re willing to shell out $1000 (for a family of 4) for a week’s stay at a La Quinta with a broken ice machine and a dirty poo,l I’ll bet you’d be willing to spend half that to live La Dolce Vita on the beach in Thailand, or else, for a little more, a life-changing tango with macaws and spider monkeys at an eco-lodge in the Peruvian Amazon.
There may be added costs associated with lodging in expensive countries, but consider where you are: Australia, Brazil, Sweden, Japan, as opposed to Orange County.
Finally, and this is probably the best reason why Disneyland doesn’t even come close to foreign travel – no one cares about your trip to Disneyland. Really. No one.
Sure it may be kitschy to ride a rollercoaster through the inside of the Matterhorn, but I promise you, people will be far more impressed if you tell them you were actually at the Matterhorn, in Switzerland. The real one. And you’ll remember it more fondly too.
This post is meant to be used as a cause for excitement about getting out there and seeing the big wide world, if in fact you had some self-inflicted obstacles to doing so. It by no means should be taken as an eff you to one of America’s most established icons: Walt Disney’s Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
Jump start your world trip planning by clicking the red banner below, but if you just can’t deal without your obligatory Disney fix, there’s always the Lion King.