• How travel brings people together

    2014-07-22

    Frequent travelers know that the benefits of a good trip include more than a bunch of photos to show off and the chance to take time off work. Travel can expand your mind and give you a new perspective on the world and the people with which you share it. As The Boston Globe reported, Robert Roosevelt shared that sentiment, judging from a letter that he once sent to his brother, Theodore Roosevelt Sr., the father of former President Theodore Roosevelt.

    Meeting of minds
    As Robert told his brother, the point of a journey is not only to see things that you couldn't see at home, but to encounter people that you wouldn't have otherwise met.

    "To enlarge your mind, which will never be enlarged by looking at a large hill, but by conversing with, and seeing the bent of the minds of other people," Roosevelt wrote was the real reason to travel, according to the source.

    The news source highlighted recent research that seemed to confirm Roosevelt's beliefs. In one study, a team of psychologists found that people who travel more have a greater trust in humanity, while another showed that young travelers were more likely to be agreeable and accepting of the unfamiliar after their trips.

    Youth on the move
    You don't need to be actively seeking out mind-expanding experiences on vacation to receive their benefits, according to Yahoo. The news source spoke to Malaka Hilton, owner of Admiral Travel, and Matthew Upchurch, CEO of travel agency Virtuoso. Both are well acquainted with the ins and outs of family travel, having taken their own children on a number of vacations starting from a very young age. According to the experts, it's easy to see the impact that travel has on people's worldview, even at a young age.

    "They are more aware of the world and more accepting of race, religion, and culture," Hilton told the source of her children, who had seen Asia, Africa and Europe before even becoming teenagers. "They also recognize that they are extremely fortunate to have the lives they have here."

    Though such broad travel may be seen as an unattainable luxury, both anecdotes and research suggest that it may play a positive role in personal development. In addition to fostering compassion and perspective, Upchurch said that travel could prepare children for an increasingly connected future. As culture becomes more globalized, the chances of regularly interacting with people from around the world increase. Kids exposed to more people and ways of life may be better equipped to participate in cultural exchange.

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