Starting the trip around the world.
PRAGUE, Czech Republic- It’s leaving day. The second of four sessions that we’re doing in Prague between 2018-2019 is over. The next one comes at the end of February. The one after that at the end of May.
Prague is never a bad stop. There’s actually few better places to set up a base of operations in. The only downfall is the archaic internet — although it doesn’t seem as bad as Germany or Poland.
Prague is one of those cities that get better with time. It’s tough to reply make something of a big city when you try to hop of a jet for a high-pass 48 hour spiel. You just kind of sheep-in with the other tourists, spend a bunch of money while not really taking much out of the experience. Cities need to be marinated. They require time to get to know. The longer I stay in big cities the more I tend to like them.
I’m sitting in the airport in Istanbul and I become aware of the fact that I’m not really carrying any cash. I have 50 euro and 30 bucks. This makes me nervous.
While cashless has become the way to go, there is always the chance that you’re going to show up in a country and find your card blocked — sometimes the foreign transactions trigger a security hold; sometimes entire countries are blacklisted by Visa or Mastercard.
I’ve had both happen on various occasions throughout my travels — and recently in Vienna for some reason my card wouldn’t work in the ATMs. It’s never been a big deal as I’ve always had a stash of cash on me, but now I’m finding myself traveling without significant amounts of cash more and more. Sometimes I open my wallet and there isn’t anything there but a wad of small change from a dozen countries.
I also have to get a visa on arrival in Beirut. I didn’t bother to check how much it costs. Could be 20 bucks. Could be $200. Could be free. I have no idea. Do they accept cards?
I’ve become nonchalant in my travels. While this means I move through the world in a curious, relaxed manner, it also means that I could find myself in a jam due to a lack of preparation.
There isn’t much to report about the Pegasus Air flight. This is a Turkish budget airline that doesn’t build a business model on incidental fees that come from tricking or outright scamming passengers — like Wizz Air, the world’s worst airline. You buy your ticket through their site, add on baggage if needed, and that’s it.
About the Author: VBJ
I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. VBJ has written 3679 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.
VBJ is currently in: Papa Bay, Hawaii
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