5 Travel Myths Unravelled

Following in the footsteps of leadbusters Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman (Mythbusters for the win), we’ve decided to put on our thinking caps and explore the truth surrounding some of these myths that have been around for the past decade, if not more.


Myth #1 – Travelling By Train Is Always Cheaper


Hopping on a train to your destination is definitely the cheaper alternative, says many. Well, apparently not.

Fact: It has been revealed; consumers can be paying up to three times more to travel via trains rather than planes. The truth is, with the existence of budget carriers, flying can be the cheapest way to get around. This is especially true when crisscrossing through Europe.

According to a study done by Telegraph Travel, “air fares are cheaper than rail fares on half of Britain’s 10 most popular domestic routes. Eg. A flight ticket from Glasgow to Bristol will only cost you £53, as compared to £141 for a train fare.”


Myth #2 – Always Drink From Bottled Water

H20 goodness.
H20 goodness.

Whenever you’re traveling abroad, drinking from bottled water is your safest bet. However, the NRDC may beg to differ.

Fact: According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, at least 25 percent of bottled water is made of tap water.

“NRDC conducted a four-year review of the bottled water industry and the safety standards that govern it… About 22 percent of the brands we tested contained, in at least one sample, chemical contaminants at levels above strict state health limit.”

The bottom line is, just because the water you’re drinking came from a bottle you purchased from a mart, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s any cleaner or safer than tap water. So the next time you purchase bottled water, make sure to say your prayers before consuming.

Alternatively, read Drinking Water Safety for further information on obtaining clean water abroad.


Myth #3 – No Scissors, Nail Clippers & Razors Allowed

These tools.
These tools.

The TSA regulation is as fickle as a fiddle. Due to it’s ever-changing nature, it seems like we can never be certain if scissors, nail clippers and even razors are allowed on our carry-ons. However, a majority of travellers have a common notion that the aforementioned items are a definite no-no.

Fact: The TSA has now updated the list of items that are allowed in our hand luggages, which include nail clippers, razors and scissors with blades that are no longer than 4 inches.

You can read up on the TSA’s prohibited items list here.

*Airport security varies in different countries, so you may want to stick to the safer side by checking with your airline regarding the differing rules that will apply at the foreign airports.


Myth #4 – Your Phone Will Cause The Plane To Crash


So the standard rule is, all phones must be switched off when the plane takes off. The big question is, can your cell phone really bring a plane down? A lot of mixed reviews and responses have been given thus far.

Fact: While electronic devices do emit radio signals, it does little to affect the plane’s electronic system.

John Nance, an ABC News consultant and veteran airline pilot says, “there’s little reason to worry about cell phones interfering with an airplane’s navigational equipment. An airplane’s electronic systems are all heavily shielded. That means that stray signals cannot get into those systems.”

Even though there isn’t solid proof to show that your phone can cause the plane to crash, let’s just keep our gadgets away when we’re up in the air.


Myth #5 – Duty Free Shopping Saves You Money

Shop till you drop!
Shop till you drop!

Each time we travel, we get psyched about the prospects of duty free retail therapy. Shopping while saving some moolah; it’s a win-win situation!

Fact: We hate to break it to you, but duty free items usually cost no less than items sold at your local shops. While it’s true that you can evade paying tax, you can’t run away from paying a higher baseline price for ‘em goods.

According to a research done by Generation Research, the big fragrance and cosmetics houses make more from duty free and travel retail than from many domestic markets.”

However, there are exceptions with heavily taxed items such as cigarettes and alcohol, but other than that, you won’t be saving much when buying that bottle of Ralph Lauren Romance

Main photo credit: 1

Photo credit: 1,2,3,4,5.

Christine Wong

Commonly referred to as “the hungry one’’ by those close to her, when Christine isn’t in the midst of constructing her next literal masterpiece, she can be found sampling the latest in local cuisine and planning her next holiday escapade!

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