Many people who travel abroad commonly experience “culture shock”, which can make them uneasy or uncomfortable. General symptoms of culture shock include feeling isolated or disconnected from others, a strong longing for your home and familiar surroundings, having trouble sleeping, feeling sadness or hopelessness, etc.

You might think getting travel insurance is the only requirement for a smooth and fun trip. However, even with travel insurance cover, culture shock can significantly ruin your travel experience. But do not worry!! This article will discuss some essential and effective steps to deal with cultural shocks during international travel.

Tips to Deal With Culture Shock While Travelling Overseas

Here’s how you can tackle cultural differences during international travel.

Accept the Existence of Cultural Differences

The most essential and basic way to deal with cultural differences while travelling overseas is to accept that people around the world have different ways of living. This is because people around the world have different beliefs, traditions, cultures, and histories.

For example, in the UK, not giving tips to waiters is entirely acceptable and normal. Hence, in the UK, tipping is considered a bonus but not a right. However, the tipping standards are completely different in the US. In the US, not tipping the waiters is considered rude behaviour, making it almost mandatory to tip while eating out.

Before travelling overseas, you should be able to accept the fact that these kinds of cultural differences exist in different countries.

Familiarise Yourself With the Culture Beforehand

Before travelling abroad, it is advisable to research and study the lifestyle patterns of people living in the country you plan to visit. This will help you understand and cope with the cultural differences.

For instance, in Saudi Arabia, women dressing modestly while in public places is considered a cultural norm and a sign of respect for local values. These cultural values exist in different countries.

Thus, search for videos, articles and blogs about the place you plan to visit beforehand. You can also talk to and learn from the experiences of people who have already visited the same place.

Master the Basics of the Local Dialect

It would help if you learned the basics of the local dialect spoken in the place you plan to visit. This may take time and effort, but it ensures a smoother travel experience.

Learn to translate some basic words like “Thank You,” “Goodbye,” and “Hello” and some basic phrases that will help you communicate with the local people of the place you are visiting.

Keep an Open Mind

Once you finally reach your destination, you must stay alert and open-minded. Since you are in a foreign country now, you have to be open-minded enough to embrace the cultural differences of the place you are in. Embracing and respecting your destination’s different cultural norms and values can help you make your travel experience even more enjoyable.

Socialise With the Local Community

Talking to and getting involved with the local community is a very effective way to understand and embrace the cultural differences of a foreign land. Small talks with shop owners or the hotel staff are an excellent way to start communicating and engaging with the locals. This will help you gain invaluable travel experiences and help you make new friends in a foreign country.

Communicate With your Friends and Family Back Home

Constantly staying in contact with your friends and family back home can help you feel less alone in a foreign place and is a great way to overcome homesickness.

With the availability of advanced technologies, you can also video chat to communicate with your friends and family. Video calling is a great way to express your feelings about dealing with cultural differences while travelling abroad.

To Wrap It Up

To ensure you have a good time while travelling abroad without being negatively affected by cultural differences, consider the tips mentioned above. To further ensure a smooth travel experience, several travel experts consider getting travel insurance as one of the best decisions before planning a trip.

You can buy travel insurance for specific criteria, such as overseas travel insurance, family travel insurance, senior citizen travel insurance, and more. An iInternational travel insurance plan provides financial coverage against any travel-related risks, including medical treatments while travelling.

Thus, besides preparing yourself for the culture shock, you should buy international travel insurance while planning your trip.


By Kay