What is travel FOMO and how to avoid it

Have you ever heard of FOMO before? If you’re unfamiliar with the acronym, it stands for Fear Of Missing Out, and means pretty much exactly what it says. No-one wants to miss out on something fun and exciting, especially if other people they know are doing it. FOMO can be applied to most experiences, and that includes traveling. If you’ve ever worried about not being able to do something on vacation or stressed that there’s something more fun that you could’ve done, then you’ve experienced FOMO. It’s a horrible feeling, and it’s hard to overcome, but there are some ways that you can deal with it.


This may not sound like a great help, but sometimes you just have to accept that you’re going to miss out on something. Consider how big the world is. You could never see it all in your lifetime. Who has that kind of money to throw around? Even one country is still too big for you to explore all at once. At some point, you have to accept that there’s not enough time to see everything. Otherwise, the fear will eat you up.

Even if you do manage to find just enough time to see it all, how much of each thing will you get to experience? Is it better to spend a day enjoying something, or spend 10 minutes seeing it on a whistle-stop tour? You’re more likely to go home feeling satisfied if you took your time and visited a select few spots, rather than rushing around trying to see everything. At least that way, you can cross those experiences off the list and do something different next time you visit the area.

Here and now

How much of your travels do you spend thinking about where you’re going next? Although vacations are supposed to be relaxing, they can be pretty stressful at times. What’s the point of going away if you’re going to be stressed all the time? It’s important to focus on the here and now, no matter where you are, rather than on the future. It helps if you don’t try and cram too much into your travels (you can’t do everything, remember) so that you have less to worry about.

Don’t be afraid to go somewhere and spend your whole day there. It might throw your routine off and stop you from seeing something, but it will remind you to enjoy what’s around you. If you’re not going to appreciate the experiences you go through, there’s no reason to go abroad. You may as well stay at home and take a week or two off work.

Be unique

How many times have you experienced FOMO because you didn’t do something that was in a guidebook or on a list of things that you “have” to do in the country? Other people’s experiences are not your own, which means you need to make your vacation ideal to you. FOMO most often happens because we compare ourselves to others. Just because someone managed to fit x, y and z into their travels, it doesn’t mean that they appreciated any of them. If you can’t enjoy a vacation your way, then you’re not going to enjoy it in any way.

Hopefully, this has made you feel a little less stressed about your upcoming travels. It’s important that you enjoy your vacation, no matter where you go. Although there will be some things that don’t go to plan, you can’t be the thing that stops yourself from having a good time.