2016 Travel Resolutions

A year has changed into another year. Since at this point of human evolution we have lost the ability to think for ourselves or make our own decisions, here is a list of travel-based resolutions we can pretend we’re going to achieve this year

Feature by Damien Cifelli | 31 Dec 2015

Try something you’ve never done before

What is the point of doing things more than once? Every time you start to do something ask yourself, “Have I done this before?” If the answer is yes, stop immediately.

Abroad is a great place to try new things. For example, in Vietnam you can shoot a bazooka at a cow. If you have some sort of moral objection to needlessly exploding living things you could try a fire glove massage in China. What’s more relaxing than being slapped by a man with hot gloves on?

I’ll tell you –­ shooting a cow with a bazooka.

Experience the real country

Get really involved in what the locals are doing. Maybe join a rebel group, it’s pretty easy. Just pledge your undying allegiance to whatever cause they keep going on about, pop on a long scarf (try not to worry about the heat) and you’re in.

They love posing for pictures so your Facebook cover photo will look great when you get back. It is worth checking what type of rebels they are though. Are they good ones or bad ones? This can be a bit of a grey area but if there are a lot of beheadings and random explosions you should perhaps consider whether you picked the right team.

Take a year off to see the world

After the first six months spread over four hostels in the Gold Coast, try branching out with places such as Melbourne or, for the really adventurous,­ Perth.

The crippling loneliness can be tough and has been known to cause breakdowns. It may drive you to the point where you end up loudly explaining to a toilet attendant how you’ve discovered a high-level conspiracy within the ranks of The Singing Kettle. “This is one kettle that’s reached boiling point!” you’ll say as you take off your shoes and socks and try to kick at the approaching security. “It’s all in the numbers!” you desperately appeal as you are consumed by the rough hands of the bouncers and bundled into the back of a van bearing a black kettle-shaped insignia. “This is a cover up!”

“Check the numbers!” you scream in vain to no one in particular.

This is often a good sign it’s time to come home.

Be a tourist at home

Short of money? Have a day as a tourist in your own town. You can spend all day on an open-top bus while you pretend not to see your mum coming out of Farmfoods. It’s just like the month in India you really wanted.

Write a blog

Make people well aware of all your new knowledge. Don’t let your opinions disappear. Future generations will value the fact that you think Bangkok is a ‘melting­ pot’ and ‘vibrant’ in the same way that people today value the Rosetta Stone.

What if Shakespeare had just thought all his plays and not written them down? We wouldn’t know all those old­fashionedy words, would we? Come on, do it for your grandchildren. Possible topics:­ ‘Isn’t it funny how people use different words to us?’ or ‘They’re so poor but they’re still smiling.’

(Continues below)

More from The Skinny:

 New Year's resolutions: how to be a better person in 2016

 'Fuck you, tourists' – an open letter by Damien Cifelli


Fail to build a toilet in Honduras because you possess none of the necessary skills. In doing so, rob local workers of an income and deprive a poor village of basic sanitation.

Try new cuisine

You’re on holiday so carpe diem! ­ Which literally translates as fish anus, ­a delicacy in Botswana. The world is packed full of unusual and exciting culinary opportunities. Wolf perineum goulash? Rhinoceros bacon? Panda testicle shawarma? Don’t mind if I do!

Become a more rounded human being

The new cuisine should help with that.

Travel solo

Spend most of each morning on your iPad and the rest of the time plucking up the courage to say ‘So, eh... where you from?’ to the girls two beds over. See the great sights of the world while trying not to cry and eat alone in restaurants pretending that you’re waiting for someone.

Embark on a great journey

Spend a week on the Trans-Siberian Railway looking out of a window at desolate villages and polar bear corpses while you complete the whole Game of Thrones series on your Kindle.

Find yourself

Be careful with this one. I once went on a six-week trip to India to find myself and discovered I was an incredibly racist Japanese schoolgirl. Some boxes are best left unopened.

Learn a new skill

Like how to sleep with your eyes open because the guy in the next bed has been giving you funny looks; or how to say “How long before I can eat solid foods again?” in Hindi.


Spend some time at the beach. Unwind, catch a little sun, start reading Game of Thrones again because it’s the only thing you have on your Kindle. Eventually succumb to the devastating boredom and wander into the ocean and disappear, only to be discovered in 14 years running a bar in Marbella under the pseudonym Señor Loco.

Do something that scares you

At 321 metres the Royal Gorge Bridge in Colorado is the highest bungee jump in the world. As you approach the edge consider the course your life has taken and how all your peers are more successful and happier than you. Think about how your prime years have faded away and you will most likely be alone forever. You will be confronted with the kind of overwhelming dread that usually only happens when you look at yourself in a mirror for too long. When you realise it is all too much and decide to throw yourself from the bridge you will be conveniently bounced back up, safe to dwell on those same thoughts another day.

Important note

Many elements here are subject to change due to the ever-altering nature of our planet. Sure, the changing climate may mean there are more turds floating around your ankles than before but it will also bring new opportunities for travel, so long as you haven't been roasted to death or drowned.

If most of your family has been eaten by great white sharks after the rising sea levels caused them to become the planet's dominant species, comfort yourself with thoughts of your next holiday. For example: scuba diving down to the Pyramids, a safari through the sweltering savannahs of Norway or a visit to the beautiful island of Switzerland. As more and more countries are submerged just consider all the new cruise routes that will be available. You might even be lucky enough to board an eternal cruise as everyone evacuates onto the sea in a desperate search for the remaining scraps of land.