How to convince my parents...

Jan 5th, 2017, 09:05 PM
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 217
Our daughter at 19 funded her own trip to Europe and Ireland for six weeks. Even though she was sensible we were worried about how she had trouble with directions (inherited DNA from me) and she sometimes would lose things( she lost her passport the night before her return to Australia). She did get lost often, and loved every minute of the trip, and resolved the passport issue herself. The trip started a love affair with travel.

Sometimes as parents you see that 19 year old as that gorgeous little child and you forget that they have grown up. Also important to remember what you as parents were doing at 19. I had just got married.

Mind you I was even more worried when at 35 invited us to watch her in her first boxing match. My response cannot be printed here.

Go and enjoy yourself and as someone suggested introduce them to Skype and suggest they meet you for a few days in France at the end of the trip. Good Luck.
cheska15 is offline  
Jan 5th, 2017, 11:20 PM
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The way I see it for MY child :

At 19 with secondary school behind you and asking yourself too many questions just get yourself a one month trip.

Who cares if you 'lose' one month or one year. Why don't you go away 2 months and ask your parents to pay for one month study in Barcelona to learn Spanish and one month backpacking - again in Spain ?

You come back with another language. Always useful.
You come back with a different experience.
WoinParis is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 01:31 AM
Join Date: Oct 2015
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Woin you're being a very responsible and caring father, but if the child is feeling confused about his choices in life and education then maybe he couldn't answer all of your questions, nor does he have a clear project in mind. Sometimes the project lays on the road and not before it. You're right about not going to France to smoke or drink away though, I hope it's not the case here.

jeje: well now the posters here have shown you what your parents might be worried about. You have a right to be confused, and to not plan every details of the trip beforehand, but assure your parents that you know yourself and your limits, that you know how to solve a difficult situation if it comes up to you in France, that it is a discover trip to understand yourself and not to wreak havoc. If you can assure that, I think they'll feel better (and it's better for you too).

About security in France, I can only say that every country has accidents of their own, and France not more than any other country.
FuryFluffy is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 03:16 AM
Join Date: Apr 2013
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Don't try to use the debating tactics displayed here to convince your parents that France is safe. They're operating on emotion, not statistics. Emotion wins that argument every time.

Instead, address how you'll respond to their safety concerns. Maybe: Have a plan to "check in" with them daily, by whatever means works for them; sketch an outline of where you plan to stay and what you plan to do -- it's just an outline.

Along those lines, maybe sketch out some broad educational goal. Examples: Learn a language, study the architecture, etc. That sells a lot better to parents than "I'm just going to bum around Europe." I'm not suggesting you lie to them; there will be some bumming around, but having a goal or theme at least shows them some structure, and will put them at ease a bit.

I implore you to carefully plan out your expenses. Most of us -- at 19 or 99 -- tend to underestimate the costs. And I think the last thing you want is, three-fourths of the way through the trip, to have to contact your parents with a "send money" message, even though they'll probably be expecting it.
vincenzo32951 is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 03:27 AM
Join Date: Oct 2015
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>> Don't try to use the debating tactics displayed here to convince your parents that France is safe.

No place is absolutely safe, vincenzo. I only said that France is not less safe than any other country. Now if my child want to go to Syrie, no amount of plan or outline could assure me. But France is another story, it's nowhere near that level, newspapers could give foreigners a false impression that we live in constant anxiety here.

And if you mentioned statistic, then no statistic says that France is a dangerous place.
FuryFluffy is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 03:30 AM
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Sorry if in my last line above, I misunderstood you vincenzo. If you meant the parents operate on emotions then I agree with you. I just felt that the parents had a right to know the reality of France, together with the child's capability.
FuryFluffy is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 07:38 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
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If you meant the parents operate on emotions then I agree with you>

exactly - same as casual travelers who hear about terrorist attacks in Paris and cancel their trips in droves - if fact they have much more chance of getting hurt or killed every day they drive at home - things get blown out of proportion.

Parents are parents no matter how old their children are.
PalenQ is offline  
Jan 6th, 2017, 10:30 PM
Join Date: Oct 2015
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I'd get some travel insurance before you go.
I'd book all lodging in advance - hostels are cheap and a good option, but check locations and reviews.
I'd map out the cities or regions you want to see and find out how to get from Point A to Point B by train. You need to purchase tickets 90 days in advance to get them cheap. This is a good website which explains everything:
You can use the same website for Spain.
I'd ask your parents for a debit or credit card to be used only in emergencies.

Then, I'd go.
fuzzbucket is offline  
Jan 7th, 2017, 01:55 PM
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I'd map out the cities or regions you want to see and find out how to get from Point A to Point B by train. You need to purchase tickets 90 days in advance to get them cheap>

but those discounted ducats are train-specific and the cheapest cannot be changed nor refunded I believe. So you lose all flexibility if you want to change your plans once there for some reason.

If you are sure to go say from Paris to south of France to start your trip yes then do the train-specific discounted ticket route.

But otherwise if you are just in the south of France and moving short distances you may save very little or nothing by booking regional trains in advance and now there are regional buses that cost just a few euros.

If under 28 check out the Carte Jeunes card for discounts on rail travel -could be your best bet - even get discounts for traveling to neighboring countries sometimes:
PalenQ is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 11:06 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
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45+ years ago I had two bad experiences back-packing and hitch-hiking on my own in France. Perhaps I was just unlucky but I can't imagine it is any safer to hitch-hike now.

Don't hitch alone. Otherwise go and have a great time. Buses are incredibly cheap along the côte d'azur and trains not much more, if you travel off-peak hours and days.

Go for it!
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 12:07 PM
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You are of legal age, you have the money, you don't need your parents permission to go.
suze is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 02:44 PM
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 624

All people are different, all parents are different, and they have different reasons for worrying -- some of them based on misinformation, which you can correct with facts -- some based on their own past experiences or some based your past behavior.

Without knowing your parents' side of the conversation it's not likely anyone can help you find words to ease their minds. My only suggestion is that you continute to listen to them and converse with them. Most people worry about others when others are traveling. Doesn't everybody say "Safe travels!" to those they love? So if you keep talking together, perhaps things will get clearer and easier.

You asked about solo traveling for young females. I did it when I was your age and you do need to be aware that your youthful openness and your interest in learning about the people you meet needs to be tempered with some caution. You will, I'm sure read the standard advice about not accepting drinks from stranges, not drinking too much, always know where you are going, take taxis at night if need be -- but also -- even if it feels a bit unnatural and limiting -- be a bit skimpy with personal info about yourself and your plans with strangers, be a bit skeptical about new people who take an interest in you.

That is not fun advice to give to a young person, but I do think it's necessary and it needn't cut into your enjoyment of travel much if you take it in the right spirit.

Safe travels!
frencharmoire is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 03:24 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4,270's not safe to hitchhike at all, now or 45 years ago!
denisea is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 04:39 PM
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OP apparently left on his trip January 5. I hope he comes back and gives us an update, and I hope he doesn't hitchhike...
sundriedtopepo is offline  
Jan 11th, 2017, 07:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
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"College" in Canada is not university. There are large differences between the two. Colleges do not confer Bachelor degrees. I don't know where you get your info from, nyt, but it is quite incorrect.
muskoka is offline  
Jan 12th, 2017, 08:24 AM
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semantics - college - university to Americans if not Canucks is the same - in general of course.

college student is a universal term in U.S. for any post high school studies.

much ado bout nothing.
PalenQ is offline  
Jan 12th, 2017, 08:48 AM
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The term collège is most definitely a faux ami between the French and English languages. Collège comes between elementary school and lycée in France -- in other words, it is junior high.

So depending on to whom you are speaking, be careful when you use such terms. It is always best to use an unequivocal term with "international" speakers. "University" is not at all ambiguous, just as "correct" is better than "right" or "spicy" is better than "hot."
kerouac is online now  
Jan 12th, 2017, 09:34 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
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I agree, Europeans do not interchange the words college and university.

Being from the States, I felt awkward and somewhat pretentious at first saying "university" when discussing my education. Now back in the States, I've reverted to "college."
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Jan 12th, 2017, 10:36 AM
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Well that part is true. Especially when you are alone in a foreign country. There are all kinds of things you will learn, every day.
suze is offline  
Jan 12th, 2017, 11:29 AM
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It used to be the U.S. had a lot more colleges than universities - the latter distinguished from a college by offering graduate studies and degrees.

The term university though now has been applied to many of what should be colleges - basically undergrad school offering a graduate degree and thus calling themselves universities.

Business schools here are now often universities because they offer some fluky online graduate course, etc.

Going off the college and college students apply to both however.

We don't say 'he's off to university as much as off to college-or college kids more than university kids.

Let's don't get into Britain's public schools vs our public schools!
PalenQ is offline  

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