Surprise! A TwentySomethingLiving article on Under30Experiences. Match made in heaven, am I right?
If you are reading this article because you know me well and are trying to be supportive, you are absolutely aware that I have an addiction to travel and adventure. I’m the annoying person you secretly hate because I’ve been to 60 countries, swam with sharks, hiked in the Himalayas, viewed Lenin’s embalmed body at his tomb. I was fortunate enough to have been raised by parents who were well-traveled and intent on making their children the same. From this, planning an adventure in a new and foreign place has always been second nature; but for most, this is not the case.
As twenty-somethings, we are a generation of dreamers – in our minds, the sky is the limit when idealizing that next vacation (though perhaps that is a dated saying, now that trips to Mars are on the horizon). So where is the disconnect? I have friends worried about cost and expenses; friends hesitant to travel alone; friends who have never left the country, or perhaps even the state; and predominantly, friends who dream big, but don’t know where to start when making that ideal trip a reality.
Cue the u30x sales pitch:
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, dogs and cats — have you ever perused a travel magazine, followed a worldly Instagram, or shamelessly stalked an adventure-seeking friend’s Facebook albums? Do you have travel fever, but are unsure of where to go, who to go with, or how to wrap your head around booking an entire action filled adventure in a new and foreign land? Follow this handy link over to Under30Experiences.com and have the Adventurers in Residence handle everything for you! Into hiking and waterfalls, laying on the beach and not moving, manual labor in rice fields? They’ve got you covered. Want to meet fellow adventure-seekers to share future explorations with? Lucky you, that’s included. Have you been everywhere, but are always down for something a little different from your norm? Yay! Join me!
Can you tell I don’t work in sales?
I recently returned from my second u30x adventure. In the airport upon return, I turned on my phone and was once again bombarded with questions about the company/experience from friends, family, acquaintances, and people I’m not positive I’ve ever met but happen to be connected with on Facebook. Hence this article. Below I’ve created an FAQ of sorts on my personal experience with u30x, questions I’ve received upon returning, and my view on the pros and cons of seeking your next adventure through the company.
How did you find Under30Experiences and decide on your first trip with them?
I spent most of last year working in Los Angeles. “Whaaatttt awesome that’s so great!” you say? No. We worked in an attic with no windows during all daylight hours. Hence, a few months into the project, I began a google search somewhere along the lines of groups who help you travel alone but with strangers for young adults and miraculously (because that’s a horrible attempt at mastering a search engine) u30x popped up about 7 or 8 lines down the first screen! Somehow, I started chatting to a friend sitting upstairs (yes, a two-story attic) about the top 3 results I was looking into – and he had a friend who signed up for a u30x trip the week before….sold! This is a word of mouth type of group, which really helps to build the ‘community’ feel. One thing lead to another and Iceland was the next trip with open slots – so BAM, off I went a few long months later.
What is your favorite thing about the Under30Experiences trips/community and what made you decide to come back for round 2 (and soon, round 3)?
Oftentimes the act of planning the trip can cause huge headaches or even thwart you from following through. While I’ve always loved putting together my own trips or sending suggestions to friends and family, I always feared I was going to miss something wonderful if I didn’t scout out every possible site or activity in a new place. With u30x, I didn’t have to think, but still came away with an awesome experience. Especially with time restraints due to careers and PTO, having a company put all of the thought into the trip really helps you relax as you should be doing on vacation! If I had 7 weeks of vacation (which is another reason I should move to another country) I would just book a flight somewhere and wander until I had to come back; but I only have days at a time, and I want to make sure those days are full of fun and exciting things – which is essentially u30x’s modus operandi.
Can you provide a brief description of what a trip actually looks like while on it?
Essentially the idea is to build your own experience within the preset plan the u30x team has created for you. Afraid of heights? Cool, then take the alternate hike, or hang out at the beach instead, or go drink while watching basketball at the closest bar. Absolutely dying to go surfing? Talk with whoever is leading your group and they’ll handle the logistics for you. You can do everything they have set up or do nothing and play video games in your bed all day if you wanted (though I don’t necessarily recommend the latter, I guess you’ve got to do what floats your boat). I did an activity-heavy ‘winter-ish’ trip in Iceland and a relaxation-heavy beach trip in Costa; both provided the same opportunity to do as much or as little as you were prepared to do.
But who am I going with? They’re all strangers…
And the best part? They tend to pick you up in a van and might even give you candy! My favorite component of travelling with this company is the concept that you can sign up alone, but come away with a group of future travel companions – and you didn’t have to do so by starting awkward conversations with strangers in a hostel (while this works for some, not everyone is built like Matt – a co-founder and Adventurer in Residence – who goes off for 2 minutes and comes back with 30 new best friends). The dynamic will be different on each trip, but that’s kind of what’s keeping me coming back for more.
Because u30x is an offshoot of sorts of Under30CEO – many of the people you’ll meet on the trips and within the community are self-starters, entrepreneurs, and basically bad ass driven people who have awesome stories to tell and make great companions on long bus rides. And that’s just the attendees. The people who run and work for Under30 are of the same variety, with the additional upside of being extremely knowledgeable of the places you’re travelling to – so you just might learn some fun facts.
Another plus? If you’re a male reader you should know there are plenty of ladiezzz on all of the trips!
Sold. Now how do I sign up or learn more?
Here’s that handy dandy link again. Find trips, dates, community meet-ups near you, contact info, etc!
Don’t be afraid to reach out directly to any of the Under30Experiences team members or to me, in the comments section below or by contacting one of our editors, if you have any detailed questions that I couldn’t get to here! For example, do you think you’re too old or too young? Already signed up and want some packing tips? Can’t decide between Bali, Machu Picchu, Iceland and Belize? Seriously – reach out! I love to travel, have had good and bad experiences – alone, with strangers, with friends, and with family, and really do recommend a trip with u30x as a great place to start or to continue a habit of exploring the world.
P.S. While this sounds like the writing of someone getting paid to sell trips with u30x; I’m actually just a big fan with no actual ties to the company 🙂[Photos via fellow u30x travelers, my personally excellent pic skills, and u30x Photographer in Residence Courtney Slade (did I make up that title, Courtney? Lo siento.)]