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Post-Graduate Travel

How to travel smartly, safely, ethically, and independently after college.

What is Mindful Travel?

Mindful travel is about being present, curious, and respectful when traveling. It is being both inwardly and outwardly mindful.

A mindful traveler is someone “who’s respectful of the culture, who’s not trying to impose their own culture, and who’s willing to view the experience through a beginner’s eyes rather than coming into it with expectations," says Diana Winston, Director of Mindfulness Education at UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center.


"Travelers' are only borrowing places from local residents.'" - Tadashi Kaneko

"The right to travel doesn’t exist" - Elizabeth Becker

Mindfulness Reading

The following readings reflect on the concept of mindful traveling:

  • How to be a Better Tourist by Bryan Lufkin, June 18, 2019, BBC
    In this article, Lufkin discusses the concept of "over-tourism" and its effects as a worldwide issue. Considering that, "places have been inundated by more tourists than they can handle," Lufkin asks, "how can you be a better tourist?"
  • 7 Mindful Travel Tips for a More Meaningful Trip by Sarah Schlichter, February 7, 2018, Smarter Travel 
    Schlichter talks about what mindfulness means and how it can be applied when traveling. According to Diana Winston, director of Mindfulness Education at UCLA's Mindful Awareness Research Center, mindfulness is, "the capacity of our mind to not be lost in the past or future, but to be more present, to be less reactive."
  • Culture and Customs Guides for Foreign Countries by Lois Friedland, June 26, 2019, Trip Savvy
    In this article by Lois Friedland discusses the importance of understanding and respecting the role of local customs while traveling. She also talks about learning the language when traveling and provides information on cultural guides books.

Guide and Phrase Book Resources

Phrase Books

  • Lonely Planet
    Lonely Planet is a travel guide book publisher. Founded in 1972, Lonely Planet has produced over 450 titles featureing colorful images, maps, and expert advice and destination information. Lonely Planet books are also published in foreign language editions and are available in both print and digital formats.
  • Eyewitness Travel Guides
    Eyewitness publishes travel guides for over 200 destinations. Their titles are highly visual and feature beautiful photographs, maps, and detailed illustrations. 

Searchable Online Phrase Books

  • Linguee
    Linguee provides users with a searchable dictionary and translator for 25 different languages. One major feature of Linguee is it allows users to see translation of of phrases by searching in quotation marks. It is also available as an app.
  • Omniglot
    Omniglot refers to itself as an, "online encyclopedia of writing systems and languages." It provides "useful foreign phrases" in over 200 languages and has features such as a multilingual phrase finder and the ability to compare translations of a single phrase among all of its languages.

Language Learning Apps

  • Duolingo
    Duolingo is a free language learning app that offers lessons in over 23 languages. Courses are available for beginners to advanced learners.
  • Babbel
    Babbel offers both free and paid subscriptions to learn a language. It uses a game-like style to teach the 13 languages it offers. The free version includes 40 classes, whereas the paid subscription ranges fro $6.95 to $12.95 a month.
  • TripLingo
    TripLingo is free language learning app that allows users to learn phrases and voice translate. 

Cultural Guidebooks

  • Culture Smart
    Culture Smart guide books, "are designed to help you have a more meaningful time abroad through a deeper understanding of the local culture, wherever you are in the world." They have over 100 country guides with new titles published each year.
  • Blue Guides
    Blue Guides are a series of travel guides that focus on the history, art, and architecture for a given city or country. They offer both print and digital formats for over 80 titles.