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Are You a Perpetual Traveler or World Citizen?

F. Daniel Harbecke, a writer with Brave New Traveler wrote the following article, Would You Be A Perpetual Traveler Or World Citizen?, which was his response to the question posed in the original article by Joel Falconer at LifeHack [2]. Both are very interesting articles — very thought-provoking!

As a travel writer, you may consider yourself to be a perpetual traveler, rather than a citizen of the world. In the extreme, you may even have quit your job and sold all of your possessions to travel. But, you probably still have citizenship in your country. Unless, of course, you’ve renounced your citizenship.

The point of the article is to examine your perspective on how — and why — you travel, and what impact (if any) you have on the rest of the world. To start thinking in broader terms.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

…”Both roles reject borders, but the difference between them is subtle.

A perpetual traveler discards the sense of home – often to avoid paying taxes, or for a more profound sense of privacy or non-affiliation. The world citizen sees the entire planet as home, and one’s citizenship as only a historic formality.”

I believe that there’s another point – beyond where your sense of “home” resides……it’s where does your sense of “community” reside? There is no right or wrong answer here, it’s simply something to think about. It has to do with why you’re going somewhere – is it just to “see” what’s there? Or can you contribute to something that stays behind in a positive way, like The Traveling Poet [3]? Or maybe you want to experience a deeper interaction with the places that you visit and people that you meet, like Andy at RideEarth.org [4], who rode his bicycle from England to Nepal.

No matter which you consider yourself to be – a perpetual traveler or a world citizen, make sure you’re respectful to a country and it’s people. When you leave, they will still be there. Do what you can to leave a lighter footprint and a good impression on those you’ve encountered, respect the culture (even if you do not agree with it), and learn what you can. Who knows, you may come back a changed person.

~ Rebecca

As a travel writer, do you consider yourself a perpetual traveler or world citizen?