"My Feet Were Raw, And Blood Was Seeping Through": 13 Travelers Shared The Biggest Mistakes They Made Their First Time Out Of The US

"My Feet Were Raw, And Blood Was Seeping Through": 13 Travelers Shared The Biggest Mistakes They Made Their First Time Out Of The US

Recently, I asked my fellow American tourists of the BuzzFeed Community about the worst mistakes they made the first time they traveled abroad.

Here are 13 of their top responses:

1."I accidentally booked a 12-hour stopover for an already 8-hour flight, thinking that a stopover (for whatever reason) was over the ocean."

A person is seen lying facedown on a bed in a cluttered room with a dresser, clothes, and pillows visible. The setting suggests a relaxed, personal environment

2."We came across the Friendship Bridge into Canada but got sent back because my wife had pepper spray."

Annie from Community sprays pepper spray while running

3."Not getting travel insurance. I never thought about it before, but it can become a necessity. While I was on a 12-day Mediterranean cruise. I was on an excursion when a woman on the same cruise fell and broke her ankle. She had to be airlifted to the closest hospital. Some of her relatives, who remained on the cruise, said that, after the airlift and first three days in the hospital, it was already $10,000 US dollars."

Kristin Wigg dressed as an elderly lady in bright outfit, covering her mouth in shock

4."When I was 15, my paternal grandfather found out his first wife was alive in our home country of Yugoslavia. A few months later, I was 16, and my father took me overseas to meet my grandmother and see relatives I only met a few times. After a few weeks in Europe, I started smoking."

Ben Affleck stands on a balcony, leaning on the railing with a cigarette in his hand, looking at the distance

5."When using Apple GPS to find stores, I accidentally walked into a corporate office."

The Weeknd, wearing a stylish jacket, appears to be walking through a brightly lit, bustling modern setting. The image has a motion blur effect

6."My group procrastinated on planning and then decided to forego the only thing we had all agreed on — Day 1 Decompression Spa Day. We just abandoned our only plan pre-flight and planned our itinerary once we arrived. BAD IDEA."

Sarah Sherman as a stressed traveler in a sleeveless crop top and ripped jeans gestures dramatically on a travel-themed set of SNL.

7."When I was in the Marines, I was stationed in Iwakuni, Japan. We were not allowed to leave the base for the first three days after arrival. On the fourth day, we were taken on a trip around Iwakuni and Hiroshima. I have no idea what possessed me to wear brand-new leather slides. By the time we arrived back at base, my feet were raw, and blood was seeping through the designs on the leather."

A woman in sparkly dress cools her feet in ice buckets in a restaurant kitchen, while a waiter looks on with a tray of food

8."Flew to Paris and didn't read the hotel directions clearly, so we got lost."

Emily from "Emily in Paris" looking slightly confused

9."We were stationed in Germany in the '70s. We had been there about two weeks when we went to a department store. I spoke very little German (please, thank you, and 'Do you speak English?' was about it) and hadn't yet started German lessons. I asked the clerk if she spoke English, to which she replied with a curt, 'Nein.' There was no way she could have known that I had just arrived, and it was a great lesson."

A store clerk in a boutique making a face

10."Please stop telling people the state you're from instead of the country when people ask where you are from in a foreign country."

A hand points to a map of the United States, with caption, "America, explain!"

11."We traveled to Paris. I didn't put my faith (or tips) in the hands of the concierge soon enough. He knew all the out-of-the-way places for dinner that were amazing!"

Kumail Nanjiani as a hotel concierge in a sketch

12."In Europe, getting a reservation ON the train does not guarantee a seat!!!"

Chris Hemsworth dressed as Thor stands in a crowded subway car among other passengers
Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

13.And finally: "This past spring break, I went on a trip for school with teachers and admin. At one point, our group (about eight) had to take a city bus a short distance to our next touring spot. Mind you, this tiny bus maybe could fit 20 people. Not me, but someone in our group was just talking and talking about life when a local rider, seeming friendly, asked, 'Excuse me, where are you from?' and the woman in our group said, 'Texas.' The local said, 'Well, they say everything's bigger in Texas — that means your voice too? Why are you so loud? Nobody wants to listen to your entire conversation!' Talk about embarrassing."

Awkwafina and Simu Liu seated on a bus, having a conversation

"As I learned quickly, people on public transport like quiet rides. They're NOT on vacation."


Marvel Studios / Via Disney+

What's the worst mistake you made the first time you traveled abroad? Share your experiences in the comments!

Note: Some responses have been edited for length/clarity.