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How was it? 10 better questions to ask a traveller

It’s sort of like being asked the dreaded “How was school?”. But unlike your day spent behind a desk or in a cubicle, there’s at least one interesting, exciting or terrifying story you could share about your trip. But “how was it?” encourages a one word response.

Yes, how was India? How was living in the United States for six months? How was France, Italy, Greece and Turkey?

Great?

Good?

Amazing?

Well, some days it was really exciting, other days I was lost most of the time. There were a few times I was scared, upset, surprised and absolutely blown away, but this boring question really only wants a one-word response.

It’s often asked with good intentions, if not slightly lazy ones. Rather than ask a bland question that has been asked a thousand times before, ask something that encourages an interesting answer. You’ll probably learn something interesting and the person you’re asking will be able to relive something meaningful from their travels.

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10 better questions to ask a traveller

  1. What was your favourite city?

  2. What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?

  3. How long did it take to pick up some of the language?

  4. What was the scariest moment?

  5. What were the locals you met like?

  6. Did you find any sights or activities a bit off the beaten track? Beyond the tourist traps?

  7. What was your favourite meal?

  8. What was the strangest thing you ate?

  9. What was the funniest/strangest/most insightful thing a local said?

  10. Where would you revisit? Would you ever move to any of those cities?

And that is just scratching the surface!

What are other good questions to ask a traveller? What do you love to ask, or be asked? 

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  • I agree that those are much better questions. I recently got back from a month-long road trip and my family asked “How was your trip?” and all I could answer with was a one word answer… I love the questions you proposed! Great post!

    • Thanks Paige! Even when people mean well and it’s a natural question, it’s hard to answer well! Hopefully these questions get some more interesting travel conversations going!

  • If you could only re-live five minutes of the trip, which five minutes would it be?

    • Ooh, I love that question! I will definitely be asking that of my travelling friends. Thanks Sue!

      • You are most welcome. Great idea for a post!

  • i could NOT agree with this more. when i got back from my 6 weeks in SE asia. the biggest two questions i got where, how was it? and why would i ever want to do a thing like spend 6 weeks in aisa? my answers were usually, oh it was awesome, and umm because i wanted too. it’s so hard to sum up a long trip and especially when life is so different over there than it is here. parts of my travels were breath taking, gorgeous, amazing, but other parts, i spent on a bus getting from place to place, and i was bored out of my mind, and the bus stop was really sketchy and janky. haha. how was it is such an unfair question to ask a traveler.

    • Thanks Carrie! I totally agree, it’s so hard to sum up a big trip with so many highs and lows with one little word!