Traveler’s Belly

Akaisha and Billy,

I enjoyed your essay “Confessions of a World Traveler.”

For being a world traveler, I have particularly unhelpful personal failings. For instance, I get motion sickness on buses, trains, planes, boats or in cars.

Your difficulties remind me of my concerns while traveling in an unfamiliar area: A sudden onset of traveler’s diarrhea while traveling in a  bus or boat without bathroom facilities, or while walking in an unfamiliar area where I don’t know where to find a bathroom.

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I imagine you’ve come across this problem from time to time. Your travelogues indicate you like to eat local cuisine. Do you have any advice about what foods to avoid, what medicines to take, etc.

Thank you for your help.


Hi Joan,

Thank you for taking the time to write and express your travel concerns.

Yes, it is no fun to be ill when traveling on the road. I must say that since this is our lifestyle, we don’t have the “push” or “drive” that a vacation mind set brings with it. If we are not feeling well, we can stay close to our hotel room if that is what is required. We can spend an extra day or two in a particular location until our health returns, so rarely do we find ourselves out and about frantically searching for a bathroom.

Simplify, simplify, simplify

We also do not tend to over schedule our days with activities so there is no obligation to be somewhere “or else.” If we need to cancel an outing we will do so. Again, this is our lifestyle, not a vacation with all the pressures to see and do that a vacation tends to have. We go at our own speed, which we find more pleasant.

And, I must say, that in the locations where we travel, public restrooms are not as common as in one would find in the States or Canada.

That being said, we tend to enjoy our locations fully, eating street food or food that is served in local restaurants. We don’t drink the local water but prefer bottled water instead. We do travel with Imodium but one can obtain anti-diarrhea medicine at most pharmacies world wide.  And we always travel with toilet paper. Third world countries don’t always provide toilet tissue in public restrooms so it’s prudent to carry it along with you.

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In my “Confessions” piece, it was my intent to demonstrate that even a world traveler has to overcome personal challenges. That even though I have traveled thousands of miles, it wasn’t always a piece of cake, and that I didn’t want my personal fears or concerns to keep me from seeing more and doing more with my life.

This is what I also wish for you – courage to meet the challenges you face!

All the best,

About Retire Early Lifestyle

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired three decades ago at the age of 38 and began traveling the world. As recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance and world travel, they have been interviewed about retirement issues by The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, The Motley Fool Rule Your Retirement newsletter, nationally syndicated radio talk shows and countless newspapers and TV shows nationally and worldwide. They wrote the popular books The Adventurer's Guide to Early Retirement (Your Simple Path to FIRE) and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible.
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