Which Type of Traveller Are You?

1. The Flashpacker

Mascara? Check. Hairdryer? Check. Fake tan? Check (Just for those behind the bikini white bits that the sun can’t get to.) Boy oh Boy. Backpacking just ain’t what it used to be. Gone are the days of travelling with one pair of dirty shorts and a scruffy vest you wash in the stream once a week! The ‘flashpackers’ are a new breed of travellers who don’t like to compromise on home comforts one iota along their journey. From mountain top to shore, they seek luxury wherever they go. Cockroach infested dorm room? Er I don’t think so.

The Flashpacker
The Flashpacker looks good wherever she is!

2. The Beer Guzzler / Party Animal

BeerLao, Tiger, Singha, Saigon, Angkor, not to mention the infamous Samsung… If sampling the local liquor’s what travelling’s all about then this disorientated backpacker gets top marks. Pale faced through lack of daylight, the beer guzzler is commonly spotted at the local Irish bar, donning a ‘SAME SAME’ T-shirt or occasionally an ‘In the Tubing’ T-shirt, proof that they did actually make it off the Khao San road! This nocturnal animal is seeing the world from the bottom of a beer glass and is having a blast meeting different people along the way to share a bevvy with. Who needs temples, museums and culture when all you could possibly need is right there in a bucket for 200 baht?

Beer Guzzler
Will this beer guzzler make it off the Khao San Road?

3. The Hard-Corer

Leeches, cockroaches, six foot Komodo dragons. Give me what you’ve got. Nothing vexes this Bear Grills wannabee. Constantly striving to get off the beaten track, this explorer’s essential items include a compass, a pair of Lowe Alpine waterproofs that detach above the knee and a roll of toilet paper for those caught short in the wild moments. White water rafting, jungle treks, bungee jumping, hell, even that dreaded slide at the fourth bar ‘Tubing’, this adventurer is up for anything. Preferring to go it alone rather than in packs, this backpacker is the rarest to spot of all the species.

The HardcorerThe hard corer goes where no man has gone before!

 4. The Soul Searcher

“I’m going to travel the world to find myself!” were the parting words on the lips of this bewildered wanderer as they fled the safety of the nest in search of deeper meaning in life. Sporting tie-dye fisherman pants, Henna tattoos, necklaces made out of vegetables, Hindu spots on their foreheads and Buddha bracelet’s round their wrists, this type of traveller is likely to enroll on meditation retreats and yoga courses in pursuit of their quest. You’ll find them traveller lingering at temples, loitering on mountain tops or occasionally trying to converse with a very bemused beer guzzler in a bar.

The spiritual seeker
The spiritual seeker on a journey to ‘find themselves’…

5. Culture Vulture

Their itinerary reads like an expertly planned military expedition. Up and out at 6am, two museums before breakfast, followed by a tour of four historical monuments, a temple or three over lunchtime, a route march through a local market in the afternoon, stopping for precisely ten minutes at four ancient houses, two art galleries and a zoo, and finish the day with just one more museum, a botanical garden and a spot of local dancing before retiring. Often spotted with a guide book or map in hand, dragging around a young rookie backpacker they met on the bus who has been naively accosted into the mission. Whatever else you can say about this backpacker, you certainly can’t say that they don’t make the most out of their day. But alas, the joys of just sitting in a café with a beer, people watching are unknown to this busy bee. What’s the rush?

Culture Vulture
The Culture Vulture exploring Manila’s Intramuros

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27 thoughts on “Which Type of Traveller Are You?

  1. AnneCha says:

    I travel to see culture, nature, new people, read and enquire about them all.
    I like my comfort but can trek around in tough conditions.
    I like to have a beer and a party once in while.
    I always find myself pondering about life and make plans for my own when travelling, as being in a different environment is conducive to a reflective state of mind (well at least in my case).
    I do without the mascara and fake tan on most travelling days, but I always pack a bit of makeup in case it’s handy 😀

    What does that make me, as a traveler ?

  2. JuhaV says:

    I think I am bit of Culture Vulture, The Soul Searcher and bit of The Hard-Corer. It really depends where I am relly.

  3. budget jan says:

    B.H. and I are love children of a mixed alliance. Father is the Culture Vulture and Co-conspirator Mother is The Soul Searcher. Together we discover the best of both.

  4. Max Neumegen says:

    35 years ago, I was a young idealistic traveller setting out to walk the length of Africa for Peace. Now it’s time to return to give back something, travel gave to me.
    “The overland traveller goes around the corner to see whom there is to meet around the next corner.” -Max.

    an overland traveller fits into every box, and no box at the a same time.

  5. Poi says:

    haha very true post! I’ve always seen different types of backpackers everywhere or even a combo of different types!

    Culture Vulture/Beer Guzzler/Hard-Corer here! I guess there’s a little side in each one of us though 😀

    great post Nikki. and timeless.

  6. Jeff @ Digital Nomad Journey says:

    It’s amusing to hear all these sub-genres of backpacker, but they hold some truth!

    I fall around the Soul Searcher/Beer Guzzler (yeah, a weird combination).
    Have a great 2012!

  7. Never left the House says:

    “Often spotted with a guide book or map in hand, dragging around a young rookie backpacker they met on the bus who has been naively accosted into the mission”

    haha, that’s such a great line… seen it many a time

    i’d probably be a beer guzzler but still very interested in activities and culture

    my only mission isn’t getting drunk but it is fun

  8. Letysia says:

    I am a Culture Vulture. What a interesting backpacker trip which I spend a lot of time to learn somewhere culture and talk with native.

  9. Ju_B says:

    ha! LOVE this post Nikki. Simple but hits the nail on the head and the touch of ‘tongue in cheek’ makes it funny. In my ideal world I’d be The Hard-Corer!!!!! yeahhhrrr!!!! woohoo! but PositiveWorldTravel is right, I guess we have a touch of them all in us somewhere..

    cheers! 🙂

  10. Ren says:

    I thought “flashpacker” just referred to a backpacker who’s still connected to the outside world by bringing an iPod/iPhone/netbook, I would have classified myself as that, but using this blog’s description of a flashpacker, then I don’t qualify because I don’t mind the “discomforts” of backpacking.

    I think I’m a cross between a Culture Vulture and a Beer Guzzler… but not as intense as this entry makes them out to be. 😛


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