Making mistakes is what travel is all about; you can't see the world properly without the odd faux-pas or missed flight.
We decided to ask around the Columbus Direct team and see what their worst-ever travel mistakes were; the responses we received surprised us. From oversleeping to undersleeping, overeating to fasting, there was no shortage of stories. Here are our favourites...
Jim from HR:
"When I went to Spain in my twenties, I was warned that the local nightclub served really strong booze, but I thought it was just a way of getting tourists in! As predicted, I drank far too much, and I awoke outside a pharmacy the next day. My friends told me I'd refused to walk any further on the journey home as I kept drunkenly talking about how I needed 'hangover medicine', and I said I wanted to sleep there 'to get in first when the shop opened'. I hadn't realised that a) sleeping on the street was painful and b) it was a Sunday. No painkillers for me."
Josh from Aquisitions:
"On my first trip to India, I got lucky with the street food, and ate from street stalls almost every day, never suffering so much as a minor stomachache. Two days before the end of the trip, I loosened my resolve to eat at a stall that the locals were studiously avoiding, and I had to endure the flight home with a case of tummy trouble. The lesson I learned was if it looks a bit ropy, it probably is."
Steph from the Underwriting Team:
"I went to Amsterdam and visited the Ice Bar there with some friends, dressed in only shorts and a t-shirt, because it was quite a warm day. We were given the capes and the gloves, but I felt the cold keenly the minute we got in there, and I was already a bit drunk when we arrived. Basically, the sudden change in temperature knocked me for six, and I passed out. I woke up covered in a mixture of vodka and orange, with my bemused friends standing over me. Embarrassing."
James from Legal:
"My wife and I chose to get married at the top of the Empire State Building. She chose to wait until the day to tell me that she was afraid of heights; all the pictures show this beaming man with a wide-eyed, nervous-looking wife. We laugh about it now, but at the time, it was a bit of a touch-and-go moment."
Danielle from Sales:
"I travelled around Italy for a few weeks when I was 26 and we visited a tomb in Rome where the walls are lined with bones - I was messing around a bit, I tripped and fell, and as I hit the floor, I'm afraid that a few bones came with me. The staff looking after the crypt rightly assumed I'd been having a laugh, and I was ejected. I've not felt shame like it since."
Stuart from Editorial:
"In the mid-noughties I travelled to Boston with my then-girlfriend, and as I wanted to appear sophisticated and charming, I didn't think it was 'cool' to use a map. We were lost for the entire day, and being an idiot, I didn't want to ask anyone for directions. We eventually ended up somewhere on the outskirts of the city, where the then-girlfriend threw a temper tantrum and asked a nearby taxi driver for directions - and to take us back to the centre of town. I'm very glad she did. We'd never have found that restaurant otherwise."
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