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Authored by Chan Komagan

We hear it every year, that now is the best time to travel. And it’s quite often true. Resources to find affordable (and even free) travel options exist these days in droves. The west is benefiting from a strong currency, oil prices are cheap, and with increasing uncertainty in some Middle Eastern and South Asian countries, the geopolitical situation of many nations could deteriorate to the point where you missed your chance to go. The best time to travel

Everything we need in order see the world can now be ours for cheaper than it ever has been before, and there has never been a better time to take time off and explore the globe. There truly are no more excuses that money is an obstacle to experiencing the world, and while it’s an overused cliche, it’s true that if you delay your travels until “someday”, it’s likely that your departure date will never come. What is the best age to travel the world?

The following are 4 reasons why now is the best time to travel.

You can hover over these (or any image) to quickly pin it!

Favorable Currency Exchange Rate

This section will only be relevant for those living in the western countries with strong currencies (ie GBP or USD). The US Dollar for example has been hitting all time highs against currencies in the developing world, and a strong dollar means higher purchasing power for westerners.

Last summer, Brazil’s Real, Colombian Peso and Indian Rupee all hit a 12 year low against USD. The main reason behind the strong dollar is the healthy employment picture combined with the prospect of FED raising the rates in the United States. What is the best time of year to travel the world?

For example, when I started my journey in Colombia in early June last year, the exchange rate was 1USD to 2500COP. By the time I left in late August it was trading at 1USD to 3100COP. It had appreciated almost 25% in just 3 months.

You see this pattern in every major currency of developing countries, though in developed countries too. A big lunch with fresh glass of juice costs $3.5 in Colombia or $2.5 in Thailand. Travel luggage that costs $49.99 from Spotlight Australia is only $37 when converted to USD. The same applies currencies such as the Euro, Swiss Franc and British Pound.

Cheap Flight Tickets

Thanks to a combination of a strong USD and the collapse in commodity prices (oil, natural gas, jet fuel etc), the price of a flight has come down quite a lot. Low cost airlines hugely benefited from the decline in oil prices. Increasing competition from other airlines also hugely drove the prices lower this year.

Take a look at the available options for cheap flights online. There are many sites and apps at your disposal (PriceScanner, Kayak and Google Flights) that will allow you to search for cheap tickets to anywhere in the world given your destination point and start date. Is it safe to travel now?

Google Flights even has a price trend map that shows the best days to book the flight tickets. Or you can utilize flight hacking companies to find the cheapest flights for you. Is international travel safe at the moment?


There is such a wide array of tools and technologies available for budding travelers to help plan and enhance their travels. Personally I use many apps to manage my travels. Check my blog post regarding the technology you should be using in your travels for a few ideas. Why travel now?

People now have the freedom to film or photograph themselves in front of exotic landscapes and landmarks with the aid of the selfie stick (while some may find them incessantly annoying, they do serve a purpose!). The GoPro 4 Hero is a great camera choice for adventure and adrenaline seeking travelers. These days you can capture moments and memories which were never possible to see on film before. Should I wait before I travel?

Google Maps,, Hostelbookers, Facebook, Whatsapp, Airbnb, XE Currency, TripIt, Google Translate – there are so many apps which now make every aspect of travel a complete breeze. There is no more need for a language barrier (there are apps for that), no more need for lugging heavy guide books (there are apps for that), and no more need to wait 2 weeks for your film to develop before you can share photographs from your trip.

The technology of today means that there has never been a better time to travel the world. Is it better to travel when you’re younger or older?

Geopolitical Situation

With increasing uncertainty in some Middle Eastern and South East Asian countries it might be better to travel to these countries NOW before the situation could get worse in the future. Why you should travel now.

What do I mean by that? In Myanmar a pro-democracy party under Suu Kyi’s (who was exiled and under house arrest the last decade) recently won the majority seats in the parliament. This could mean positive news for travelers (some would challenge me on this), which means more domestic reforms and ultimately more choices for foreign travelers. But given the country’s history I wouldn’t be surprised if there is another military coup to reclaim power.

Egypt and Turkey are fascinating destinations steeped in history and archaeological wonders, though with an increasing threat from terror groups based in the Middle East like ISIL, the safety situation in the future could be drastically different to that of today. And historic relics and landmarks could disappear. With the recent demolition of the Palmyra ruins in Syria, ISIL has demonstrated they have no interest in preserving any historic structures or cultural artifacts. This is what once stood.

To further the point, as of now, free tourist visas can be obtained for Jordan for those who enter via Israel or Saudi Arabia, but this policy could change once tourism starts to really take off. Starting this year, India allows visa on arrival for most western citizens, which is great given the lengthy process to get an Indian visa. Argentina may be better to visit now rather than later; the country has always been on the edge of bankruptcy, and a full scale default could very well occur. best time to travel is right now. Why is now the best time to travel?

At the end of the day, many things may influence your decision to travel. Though I hope given the above points, you might choose to travel now, when the situation is still favorable for most western citizens.

I would welcome your comments and reaction to this article and provide other useful tips that might help to influence more people travel the world.


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Chan is an avid traveler and a tech enthusiast who has traveled to 5 continents and 40 countries in his lifetime. He quit his job last December to pursue his dream of traveling to the far corners of the world.

Based in New York, while traveling he does stock trading and blogging at You can connect with Chan on Facebook and Twitter. You can read more of his guest posts on this blog on his author page.

Photo credits: Ruins of Palmyra in order of appearance by James FilipiVerity Cridland & Gavin.


  1. I agree. Nowadays, traveling has become easier, a lot more convenient, and most of all accessible to everyone. We are currently in Ecuador and despite the inflation in some items, things are still relatively cheap and good value for the dollar. There are places that I would love to visit now before the political situation worsens.

    • Hi Anna – Thanks for reading my post. Yea a strong USD didn’t help much in a couple of countries like Jordan for instance. I mostly traveled to those countries where the currencies were depreciating by a lot against USD.

  2. All great reasons why the best time to travel the world is now, Chan and Meg! We could easily add the fact that tomorrow never comes as #5.

    • Good point Howard. Many people put away their savings towards future without enjoying the presence. But tomorrow might be very different from today.

  3. Yes! I always say that now is always the best time to travel or to start travelling for those that are reluctant to do so.

    And you’re very much right. Currency is very favourable these days but it’s not only about that. We live in a time where everything is SO much easier than it used to be not even long ago.

    All sorts of tools exist to make our travel easier and potentially more affordable. We just need to say yes!

    • That’s it Hugo! I’ve found that making that first step and saying “Yes” is the hardest part! Once you overcome the decision to make travel happen, everyting gets easier and easier from there! And people then often wonder why they didn’t start sooner :D

  4. Not to mention its easier than ever to research and plan your trip! Unfortunately not living in a major US city my flight prices are still quite high to many destinations.

    • Absolutely re the research – so many tools at our disposal these days! I have quite a lot of friends in small towns throughout the US who usually bus it or train it into the big cities so skip the domestic connection. Usually saves them a reasonable amount in extra flight fees :)

      Happy travels!

  5. It’s all so true! As an almost 30 American we’ve never really had a strong dollar before, not when I’ve had any to spend before. When I studied abroad the Euro was $1.75. It’s exciting (for us Americans at the very least) to be able to get around the world a little easier right now.

    • Hi Megan – Thanks for reading my article.

      I remember when I first traveled to Europe (France) Euro was 0.86 against USD but then it quickly appreciated a lot (thanks to our growing account deficit, imbalance and debt etc etc) and now years later we are looking to go on par with Euro again :)


  6. Hey Meg & Chan!!
    I´m from Brazil, where the currency is crap right now, but even with the financial crisis working against us, I still believe Today is the day to travel!! Not only because of the reasons you have lined up on the post, but also because we are living in a moment of changes. The world is changing so fast and so harsh, today we have the opportunity to experience cultures, food, meet people that soon won´t exists anymore. And I rather learn about a new culture and people visiting a place than going to museum in the future!
    Happy travels,

    • Hi Natalie – Thanks for reading my blog post.

      Yes sorry the Brazilian Real is not doing so great at the moment. But like you mentioned it shouldn’t be a show stopper. I have met many Brazilians in my travel.

      Happy travels to you too:)

  7. All great suggestions and I love the shopping for cheap flights. SO many great resources to choose from and with flexibility, I like the option of just choosing the location based on the best deal myself.

    • Absolutely Melody :) Glad you enjoyed the post. happy travels!

  8. So true! Now is definitely the best time to travel for all of these reasons you listed–when people keep putting it off, it seems like it never happens, so it’s great to have these reminders! We’ve been super happy about the exchange rate being so great for USD–it made traveling to Japan much cheaper for us this past year!

    • Thanks for your comment Jenna..Japan is next on my list.

      Yes USD has appreciated quite a bit against JPY almost 50% in the last 3 years.

  9. It’s always a great time to travel! Hopefully people do take advantage of these 4 reasons. So many Americans don’t even have passports! But I think younger generations are starting to realize the importance of travel and its many benefits.

    • I know I think the passport rate of ownership in America is something shocking like 20%. I think you’re right though that the younger generation is starting to realize there’s a lot more out there in the world and that they’re the only ones losing out for not jumping on a plane to explore!

  10. Agree 100%! The time is now and I may have little time left! Last year I went to 17 countries and 10 states. This year I will be gone for 8 months!!!C

    • Sounds wonderful Carol! Looking forward to following your travels this year!

  11. It is definitely a good time to travel. We went to Japan last year and the exchange rate was awesome. Made our holiday very affordable. It is also so easy to find and book cheap flights and hotels. Great post

    • Happy to hear you had a wonderful time in Japan – the exchange rate being good is definitely something to take advantage of while you can!

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