If you’re thinking about the things to collect while traveling, here are some suggestions for you. I interviewed girls from Girls Love Travel Facebook Group and here are some things they collect:
1. BAG PATCHES
“I was in law school and signed up to study abroad at the University of Montpellier so i backpacked before, during and after school ended. Then the next year I signed up again to study abroad at Leiden University in The Netherlands.Â It was for a longer period so i was able to continue to backpack that semester as well.Â I’ve been obsessed with travel ever since”
Angie Pagan has been to 25 countries since she started traveling in 2002. When she started backpacking, some travelers had patches on their book bags so she liked the idea and began doing it. Each patch is a different trip. She purchases the patches at the destinations rather than the internet because she can get much more unique designs there than online.
2. METRO TICKETS
“I find metro card more meaningful because it’s a thing that takes me from place to place at a foreign place. Finding my way using public transportation is fun, it’s how the locals get around so I get a sense of what it’s like to live in the city. Also, the way people interact/not interact are different from place to place, so I would learn something new as well”
Natalie Kwong started traveling in 2015. It was her first solo trip to Taiwan that got her wanting to collect metro cards. For her, collecting metro card is convenient because she doesn’t have to keep looking for change each time she wants to use the metro. She feels pressured whenever she looks for change to get the ticket while there are others behind her isn’t pleasant, especially knowing she’s on vacation and others have places they have to be at work. If a country does not have any metro system, she keeps the bus tickets instead.
“I admire my travel art daily and have never regretted spending the money I did on these pieces. Some prices are vastly different than others but they all represent so much and make me smile. I appreciate these pieces so much more than postcards or jewelry or edible gifts and I’m so thankful to that friend who suggested I begin this hobby in the first place. Have fun with your collection and make it your own!”
Jessica Lauther is a wannabe world traveler currently living in Tampa, FL. She’s working at the University of South Florida. Her first trip abroad was in 2009 as part of an exchange program where she studied as an international student at Middlesex University in London, England. A family friend encouraged her to collect art everywhere she went. It turned out to be the best advice because now her whole living room is dedicated to her adventures and reminds her of all the wonderful places she has been and memories she’ll treasure forever. The artworks you see in the picture are from Spain, Mexico, Greece, Italy, Amsterdam, Belgium and Paris.
4. PANDORA CHARMS
“The first travel tattoo was the compass. I had gone to Australia on a trip as a graduation present to myself after college, and while I was there I decided I wanted to get a souvenir I would never lose, something that would always remind me of that trip. So I went with a tattoo of a compass, something every traveler needs!”
Sarah Trout mentioned that the mandala tattoo is actually hand poked and was definitely the most painful. In addition, the floral sleeve/shoulder piece is a tribute to places she’s lived or traveled. Instead of filling in the map with countries she’s visited, she decided to get state and national flowers. They are her favorite because she loves flowers, and it’s something she can just keep adding on to as she continues to travel.
The Polynesian-style compass on her forearm which she got from New Zealand was done with tools, including a mallet and a board tusk blade. The skin is held taut, and and then the blade is tapped into the skin. According to her, it was also extremely painful, but totally worth it. Any sort of traditional or hand-poked tattoo is pretty rare in the US, so she feels very lucky to have 2 unique souvenirs!
“It seems my love for collecting pieces of jewelry began when I was young. As a child, I grew up going to Lake Powell and the Grand Canyon. On our way my dad would always pull over to the stands lined up along the road selling their jewelry. He would let me pick out something. I always cherished that piece of jewelry. Fast forward to traveling as an adult. I am always drawn to people selling their items. It’s always fairly easy to find items that I love. All of my pieces mean so much to me.”
Jen Quercia Glover believes that there is something so special about being in your everyday life and being able to wear a piece of places you’ve been. She has collected pieces from Italy, Mexico, Costa Rica, Canada, The Netherlands and her own country of the US.
What am I collecting?
I’m collecting portraits! I know it sounds narcissistic but I enjoy looking at these artworks while I’m working. It reminds me of my adventures and the artists I met during my travels. I began collecting since 2014. Most of them are given by my friends and others are bought from street artists I encounter while roaming around Korea.
I’m also collecting traditional clothes. I am fascinated with Korea’s traditional costume so I wear it whenever there’s a chance. In fact, I even have a “modernized hanbok” to wear if there’s a special occasion. I’m still on the process of searching for Philippine’s Filipiniana or tribal costume that suits me. In the future, I’m planning to wear Japan’s kimono, India’s sari, Vietnam’s conical hats, and many more.
What do you collect when you travel?