Downsides of Traveling

Emily Facciolo headshot
Emily Facciolo
April 15, 2024
Prater Amusement Park

As my last month was quickly approaching, I realized that there were still some places in Europe that I’d like to visit while being abroad (even though this list is more accurately endless). I wanted to spend most of my weekends in Ireland, which I’m really grateful I did, but I also wanted to be here for the semester so that I could explore some other things too. 

On the first weekend of April, I went to Vienna, Austria with one of my friends. However, I had to fly alone because we were unable to get the flight. I’ve done this before, and it’s usually always fine; for some reason, this journey was terrible. It was the weekend of Storm Kathleen, so it was just pure chaos in the airport, almost cinematically. It got delayed by about two hours, which I did not find out until after security, when I was stressing out about making my flight at all. Furthermore, the screens displaying the departure times were saying a completely different gate than the gate on my Ryanair app, which was basically at the opposite end of the airport. 

Getting to my hostel in Vienna was honestly terrible. I was feeling fine once I finally landed in Austria but then there were no trains running that late into the night, so I decided to take a taxi instead. A 25-minute ride ending up costing $72, something that completely shocked me, but it was too late at that point to do anything about it. I also was just not able to find the hostel when I got there, because it was above an Ikea. It was too confusing and too late to not feel fed up with traveling at this point. 

Yes, this was a major pain to deal with all by myself, but I would do it all over again if it meant experiencing a new beautiful city for the first time. Vienna is one of the most amazing places I’ve ever been to, and I was able to do so many memorable and exciting things that were special to Vienna/Austria. Everything I went through to get there was all worth it.

The next weekend, I went to Amsterdam, which has presented other frustrating experiences. We booked tickets to the Keukenhof tulip festival that included transportation there and back. It was definitely convenient, but there were some issues on our bus ride. There were a long line of people waiting to get on a bus, but the employees asked if anyone was willing to stand up on the bus rather than just getting a seat. My friends and I were pretty far back in line, so we thought it would be worth it to stand for a little so we could get there sooner. However, we soon discovered it was a 40-minute bus ride… where we had to stand for the entirety of it. But it got worse. The traffic was so bad to the point where we were at a standstill for a little while. Being packed in there like sardines, it got extremely hot extremely fast, and there was absolutely no air conditioning. It was maybe an hour and 15 minutes in these terrible conditions, but we got through it. 

The Netherlands was such an amazing experience and I learned so much about the city, as well as just appreciating its beauty. This was also certainly worth the frustration of traveling. Although, I am typing this at the Amsterdam airport because our flight just got delayed over three hours, something that we did not know until after security…again. This was just really frustrating knowing we could have spent more time in the city rather than just waiting in the airport.

Travel days can be so grueling and terrible at times, but they can also be some of the most memorable parts of the journey, especially because I am learning all of this at a young age. In a way I am glad to have experiences like these, even though it might not seem like it at the moment. It allows me to grow and be more flexible and less uptight, which I would say is necessary. I know that it will end up working out in the end and I’ll be back in Dublin soon, and for the last time. 

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Emily Facciolo

Hi! My name is Emily and I am currently a sophomore business major at the University of Pittsburgh, but I am from Delaware County, PA. Before going to Dublin, I have been to six other countries. My biggest passions are reading and traveling. 

2024 Spring
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