The Art of Keeping in Touch While You’re Abroad
Traveling to a new place hits you with a gust of excitement and endless views, scents, and tastes to stimulate your senses. However, while you’re eating tredlnik in Prague‘s Old Town Square or hiking into the Irish clouds, your friends and family at home continue to live their daily lives. Adventure sometimes makes it easy to let communication with folks back home fall by the wayside. It isn’t difficult to lose touch with close friends and family members especially while on a long trip, but it does not need to be inevitable. Here are a few of my tips that will hopefully help you maintain friendships with your besties back home while you’re living the dream on a beach in Thailand or backpacking through the hidden gems of Austria.
Add fun stationery to your packing list
After discovering A Beautiful Mess’s monthly Happy Mail, I have fallen in love with sending notes to my friends and family just to remind them that I’m thinking of them. I also pack Thank You cards to leave for anyone along the way who is particularly kind to me during my travels. There’s something extremely special and personal about receiving a handwritten note. Compile all the mailing addresses of loved ones you think you’ll want to send something back to before you leave.
I go so far as to set reminders in my phone to pop up and tell me to text my parents while I’m away. It’s not because I don’t care about them, but sometimes I get whisked away walking around a new city for 7 hours immediately after an 8 hour flight only to leave them wondering if I’m alive or trying to stay afloat in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. It doesn’t matter how old you are, your parents want to know that you’re alive. My favorite app for reminding me of my to-do list is Todoist.
A friend a day
I’m a huge fan of making lists. I’m not kidding, I get a huge thrill out of it. Write out a list of people who you want to keep in touch with regularly while you’re away and reach out to one person on the list every day. A simple hello text or message goes a long way! I find this particularly helpful for long trips, like my four months spent in London or seven weeks in Europe.
It is no secret that connecting to friends and family is much easier these days in the age of new technology. My boyfriend and I set up Skype dates with each other because texting gets old and sometimes you need face-to-face interaction. After months away from home, seeing the face of the one you love is like a breath of fresh air.
Sometimes life gets in the way, but your best friends and family will always love you even if you’re constantly blowing up their Instagram feeds with envy-inducing photos of your safari. Return the love and remind them that even though you are on the other side of the world having the time of your life, home is where your heart is.