Travel Stories People Don’t Like to Tell

Travelling the world can be enchanting and enriching to one’s soul. But as any experienced traveller will tell you, it’s not always the beautiful sights and sounds you take away from the place. You can get mugged, see abject poverty and be scammed by locals. Travellers recount some negative instances they’ve encountered which they choose to leave out from their stories.

1. Scammed in Istanbul

I was scammed at a night club in Istanbul. I met some other travellers and I joined their private table for most of the night. At the end, I was left with a 4000 USD bill. In reality, the cost should have been in the 400 USD range….and I was prepared to contribute to the bill. The whole club was full of people in on the scam. So when the bill came, the place cleared out and I was escorted to the ATM machine. My life threatened along the way. The ATM denied me so I was forced to call my credit card company…they denied raising my credit limit to pay the club. At the end of the day, I convinced them I had another credit card at my hotel. They escorted me to the hotel, I told the front desk what was up and they locked the doors and called the cops. Turns out the group that had me was recently busted with large amounts of money, drugs and weapons. [HereIsYourBankersBox]

2. Robbed in Barcelona

Got robbed in Barcelona. Last night there, got back to the apartment, which was locked, and every valuable was gone, but they left our passports and USD. They even took my suitcase.

I still think it was a set up from the people renting us the apartment. Police could do nothing. Funny thing was, that whoever stole our stuff resold it because a picture of two spanish people showed up on our cloud storage from the the tablet. Also my mom had her wedding ring stolen. The one day in her life she decided to wear a different ring. [Riotboy423]

3. Teenage Oliver Twists in Rome

The train stations in Rome are filled with teenage pickpockets. Two different groups made attempts at us in 5 minutes. It was actually fun to watch once we realized their strategy. [hpresent]

4. Fake Customer Service in Italy

For me, there were people pretending to be “customer service.” They stood outside the TrenItalia booth and answered questions.

Rome’s Termine is pretty huge. I needed to know which platform to go to. I approached the booth and a “helper” came over. Not fishy yet- this is a legit practice in NYC.

The helper takes me and my party to the platform (binario.) It was all the way across the station and a huge help.

I have the guy 3€ (like $5). He told me he wanted at least 20€ per person. Immediately, I knew something was up. I told the guy the money was a courtesy – not a fee.

He was menacing – and refused to leave us. He would say things like, “I know where you’re going.” Finally, Carabinieri made their way to our platform and he ran away.

I later found out it is a major problem there.

TL;DR- Don’t accept unsolicited help at the train stations. Wait for a proper “in the booth” agent. [_TheConsumer_]

5. Old People Asking You to “Fook Off”

The sheer number of elderly people on scooters telling me to “get out the fookin way!” in Scarborough, North Yorkshire. [FyllingenOy]

6. Aggressive Stray Dogs in Peru

There’s a lot of stray dogs in Peru. I’ve heard that stray dogs are kind of the norm in Latin American countries, and most of the ones I encountered didn’t want anything to do with anyone passing by. However, there was one stray that I passed frequently while walking to a project I was working at and he was extremely aggressive, to the point that I started carrying rocks in my bag in case he chased me. He would follow me for blocks, remaining hidden in a yard until I passed by. He’d bare his teeth and growl, he also slobbered a lot. I didn’t think it was rabies, but I’m also not 100% convinced it’s not rabies. [honeynut-queerios]

7. Dog Carcasses in Guatemala

I lived in various parts of Guatemala for a few years and it was the same there. Once in a while the police would set aside a certain day or days to cull the problem because they couldnt deal with the sheer number of dogs out there. They’d make an announcement to keep your dogs indoors and then roll up on all the strays and shoot them. I walked by a police truck once with a bed filled with dog carcasses and swarming with flies. That wasnt even the worst thing I saw in Guatemala by a long shot. [purpleshirted]

8. Kid Gangs in Latin America

I used to play basketball with some members of MS13 in this neighborhood called San Rafael. They were cool to me, but they were not what you would call “good people.” One day they were supposed to initiate a 14 year old kid into the gang, but his mom told him he wasnt allowed to join, so he went to their spot and told them what his mom had said. I wasnt there when this happened, but I showed up 2-3 minutes after. The kid started walking away and they shot him 4 times in the back. When I got there he was laying face down in the middle of the street. The worst part to me was that no one seemed to care that the kid was dead, it was more like something to see.

Another time I saw a guy who sliced his wrists sitting on the curb under a street lamp just crying as he watched two puddles of blood growing around his feet.

Also saw a man sell his 8 year old daughter to a pedophile because he didnt have money to keep her fed. He figured it would be better for her to be with this 56 year old fuckhat because despite the abuse, he knew she would be fed. I didnt understand what was going on until someone explained it to me later. To this day it bothers me that I was too stupid to pick up on what was happening and wasnt smart enough to do anything about it. The girl was someone we were teaching, sweetest little thing Ive ever meet in my life. She had the brightest, happiest eyes Ive ever seen. I can’t imagine that light survived for very long in that arrangement. [purpleshirted]

9. The Homeless in Hawaii

The amount of homeless people sitting along Kalakaua ave in those little pergola areas in Waikiki, Hawaii. [TimberBucket]

10. Young Boys Sexually Exploited in Afghanistan

Afghanistan. In the ethnically Pashtun areas especially, young boys are prized for their beauty and are sexually exploited by older men in a bizzare form of apprenticeship. It’s very widespread and it is not only socially accepted, is a kind of social status symbol for the men who engage in these relationships. Most boys end up married off to a woman in the abusers extended family, or enter into the mans business when they hit puberty. Relationships stop when a boy starts to get facial hair, because that makes it homosexual.

It’s really hard to talk about, because most Americans have a hard time believing it. There is a fascinating essay written about the phenomenon by a female American PhD sociologist, who traveled around the country for a while with the USMC. [anauthor]

11. Hookers Fighting in Prague

Hookers almost getting into a fistfight over the price of a blowjob they were both offering. Saturday night in Prague, Czech Republic. [robogo]

12. Overflowing Trash in Bosnia

Bosnia is full of trash. I love that country, but damn, is it littered. If you’re hiking in the countryside and you see a small lovely path, don’t take it, it leads to a dump. Almost every village has one. [usthcd]

13. People Sleeping on the Streets in Mumbai

The sheer number of people sleeping on the street, on footpaths, under bridges in Mumbai & Pune, India. Whole families. I just got back and am still thinking about it. There was a lot to love about India, but we saw some heartbreaking things too. [theredfroglives]

14. Chinese Military Police

When my father came back from a business trip in China, he had a broken leg. He told us that he had slipped on some stairs.

It was only many years later that I found out the Chinese military police had thrown him off a bridge and left him for dead.

He was part of an arbitration team that had been brought in on a legal case against the government for negligence. I don’t know why he kept it secret from us for so long, but it certainly changed the way I saw China. [Hellknightx]

15. Being Offered Underage Sex in South-East Asia

I was offered underage sex in SE Asia. Way underage. Turns out It’s depressingly common, and many N. American and European pedophiles come here for that reason. [afellowinfidel]

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