Or do you generally play it safe? For example: would you travel to a fairly "dangerous" place , like one with an official travel warning? Would you do any sort of potentially dangerous activity on a trip ( like climb, or ski, or bungy jump) Would you leave a well paying secure but boring job to do something you want, even if you might end up broke? Would you invest money in something that might pay off a lot, or you might lose all of it? One a scale of 1-10, (1= no rik, 10= extreme risk) how much are you willing to risk?
Hi Sophia, I'd say I'm probably a 3 on your risk taking scale. Only because Mexico is on that warning list and I've gone there. I wouldn't go to some of the other places on the list because I don't know the "reality" of the risks warned about. Mexico, I do know and feel safe enough. See what I mean? When it comes to money, I wouldn't take much of a risk in most cases, except in Las Vegas. I have a couple of times bet my last gambling dollars by saying to myself, "Will I feel worse going home with nothing or by not taking the chance?" Then I make the bet. :-)
We went to Cairo a few days after the first uprising...no problems..If we want to go somewhere we will ...the terror mongerers wont win we have both been parachuting and parascending...we desert quad and we dive jobs and money are something we would never ever risk...we have too many depending on us...I dont invest or gamble...the 20 in my pocket is the 20 in my pocket Im probably a 3...he is probably a 5
Most people would say that i am a risk taker, but i always calculate risks before i take them. I don't give anything for official warnings in general. If i go somewhere that might be considerd dangorous then i use the contacts i have there to tell me about the situation. Is the crime directed towards tourists for instance or is it a local conflict they have there. Financially i don't go and gamble all my money on one horse, but i also don't save anything up. When i have some money i spend them and as i am always in ovement and never sitting still then there is always more money from some source or another.
I'm probably around a 3/4. Caution is my middle name: I have always been thus. It doesn't stop me doing some things others might consider risky (e.g. travelling as a solo female) but I always judge my own risk rather than take the advice of others. It may not be the way I want to be but it is the way I am, and I know that trying to mould my personality into what others might want simply doesn't work for me. I'd rather be happy....:-)
I have just been trekking in Nepal and i went all alone with no guide, no porter cause i really felt like some solitude after some stressful work weeks. That is generally something that is not recommended, but i am a former trekking guide and a slow and careful trekker, so i was not worried. And i have been cycling through countries like Mexico, Brazil, Cambodia, Albania, Syria and The Philippines, always all by myself with no backup, but i do my research in advance and i was never worried about being attacked on these bicycle trips. The only real risk on these trips is being run over by a bus or a truck really.
10/10 I stood amongst live crocodiles in the Gambia, some just inches away from my legs and a 8 footer walking past me less than a meter away.
Do you still have your legs?
I do and I will put the photo back up when I rebuild my Gambia pages.
Most people who know my life talk about me like I'm a nine, but I think of myself more like a five. By the time I have both feet in there is usually a plan b or c.
The perception of objective dangers and risks is subjective and rating has little significance. As already mentioned in this thread, what I deem a 5/10 can be taken as a 10/10 or a 1/10 by others. Risk assessment and preparedness is always necessary as dangers can be found just around the corner from home. It's not "what" or "where", but always "how" things are planned and performed based upon personal experience and/or advice from others, and careful research. >> how much are you willing to risk? My direct answer to this question is 9/10 except for financial stuff. My perceived rating is 5/10. I'm thirsty for the unknown and yes, I travel to "dangerous" places in "risky" situations. Rock climbing, backcountry ski and paragliding are normal activities for me as well as off-road motorcycling and cycling. As Claus said, chances to be run over by a truck are higher than having an accident on a rock climbing route. Main reason is leaving our own safety in the hands of others when the mother of idiots is always pregnant.
Interesting question, Sophia. Antonello's quite right: perception of 'risk' is highly subjective and depends on the individual and the society in which they operate. Risk in a society such as South Africa which has a limited social welfare system and encourages entrepreneurial activity is not perceived in the same way as risk is in a conservative country such as Germany, so a 4 in South Africa would probably equate to a 9 in Germany. I would probably rate myself a 7 or an 8, but I suspect that others (including my very conservative family) would put me higher up the scale. I wouldn't participate in most extreme sports - though I have climbed, skiied and done whitewater rafting - but more because it really doesn't interest me much. And now that I have a family, I probably wouldn't sign up for an activity that would invalidate my insurance policies. Both my husband and I at various times have resigned from comfortable, well paid jobs to follow more interesting opportunities which offered much less security. However, this has always been a considered joint decision, and with only one of us taking the 'leap into the unknown' at a time. At the moment, I have the corporate job that brings in the steady income and offers important benefits like medical aid cover, life insurance, pension plan and paid leave, and he is self employed, which gives us access to the significant tax breaks that are offered to small businesses in this country to promote job creation. Financially we spread the risk with our investments and probably consider alternatives (such as international bonds) that others would consider too risky. However, we never put all our eggs in one basket and would never invest in a higher risk prospect if we didn't think that we could afford to lose the money (although obviously that wouldn't be something that we'd like to do). We have also become partners in a number of small businesses over the years, mostly to do with some form of agric/aquaculture, and whilst these have yet to make us rich, one day hopefully we'll crack the big one!
Great comments! I have come to the conclusion that each person has a different idea of what "risk" is, and what sort of things they are willing to risk. It does seem very subjective. I used to think I was a risk taker, but not so sure now. I think I just see "risk" in different things from other people, and they don't match statistics, lol! Flying across the Atlantic to me feels like a much bigger risk, than skiing down a mountain at 50 mph, or driving on I-95 which is probably the most actual dangerous thing we do regularly. I am willing to take some risks if the payoff is large enough ( I will get on a plane, if I really want to go somewhere) but overall, I don't take that many risk. I would like to have a completely different job, but it would be a huge risk, so I stay where I am at. I don't gamble with money either.
10/10 I stood amongst live crocodiles in the Gambia, some just inches away from my legs and a 8 footer walking past me less than a meter away>>> Now, those types of "risks" I might do also. We have tipped over canoes right next to 10 ft+ gators more than once, and I regularly go swimming in what appears to be shark infested waters at the beach here, and we've come across bears while hiking Somehow wildlife does not scare me as much as transportation!
Trffic is by far the biggest danger when you travel. If some statistic was made it would show that too. But it's not as alien to people as many other things so they fear it less.
I agree with comments above about risk being subjective. I've travelled to a few places and in situations that some would consider risky (camping alone in an area with wolves and bears, for example), and have tried sky diving and similar things, but it's always a calculated risk with precautions taken. So to me I'm maybe 3-4, although to hear some people talk about it, I'd be 8-9. (I think those people need to get out more.) I don't take many risks with money, partly because I don't have much, and partly because pure gambling doesn't appeal. My investments are meant to be long term. I have walked out of jobs before, though. I've driven in India and in Boston, so pretty sure traffic won't get me. I will NOT be risking limbs anywhere near crocodiles or aligators, though, or hippos, thanks!
Hmmm...would I travel to a place with an official travel warning? Yes, and I have done several times. The first was in 2000, to SE Turkey during Nowruz festival when the British government said don't go to Diyarbakir or points east. Apart from jumping about three feet in the air when someone let off a firecracker right behind me in a dark street shortly after arrival, and being escorted around by police in one town, it was an uneventful trip. Then I moved to Yemen, a country on the "No Go" list due to kidnappings. Then it was Sudan, where I lived in a region with a "small war" going on not far from my town, again with a travel warning from my government. Lastly, Iraq in 2010...I stuck to the Kurdish-controlled area in the north which didn't have a travel warning posted, but did pass close to two cities considered dangerous enough to warrant an extreme warning. In all cases, I'd done my homework before travelling, spending hours trying to find out what the risks were, talking to people who had been recently, talking to people there, etc. (Apart from Sudan, as the warning level actually went up while I was living there, unbeknown to me at the time!). The people who told me not to go to these places were generally my friends and family who had never been themselves. If recent travellers or people living there told me not to go, I would be more inclined to take their advice. I've read accounts about travellers talking their way onto planes heading to Baghdad or Mogadishu, and that to me is just ridiculous. Not only are they putting themsleves at risk but also people around them, those assigned to look after them during their stay. On my trips to "risky" destinations, I don't think I put anyone else at risk by being there. Activities...well skiing, yes, but that doesn't seem to be such a risk. Bungee jumping I'd always said I'd like to do one day, but having discovered recently that I'm not an enormous fan of standing on the edge of a long drop and looking down, I'd probably pass on it if given the chance now. Money...I just don't have enough of it at the moment to gamble or invest. Out of 10, my Mum would probably give me a 10 as she tends to worry when she hears words like Iraq or Yemen (hence why I don't always tell her!), but I'd say I'm around a 4 or a 5.
This type of question always puts me at risk of sounding pedantic. If that bothers you, skip reading this response. Since risk is relative, there is no such thing as playing it safe. You could say that you try to play it "safer", but there is always risk. The problem with official travel warnings as with unofficial fears, is often the unspecified or unknown denominator. For example, one risk of skiing is breaking a leg (another might be running into a tree and dieing) but the issue is both the severity of the danger and the frequency. Also it would seem obvious that an experienced, cautious skier on a safer ski slope would be at lower risk than a inexperienced or over-confident skier alone in the wilderness. Timing is also important. Breaking a leg at the beginning of a one month trip, has more severe consequences than breaking it on the last days. When you travel you sometimes have alternatives. For example, a safer airlines versus an airlines with a poor record. Even when you face this choice, there may be other considerations such as cost and schedule. Since cost has a big impact on my travel plans, you can guess what my choice may be. Other times especially in third world travel, you have to choose a risky way because the risk of an alternative is even greater. For example, my impression has been that boat travel in overloaded and poorly maintained ferries across dangerous crocodile waters is dangerous, but swimming does not seem to be an alternative. Taking a major land detour might be even more dangerous. At some point, the risks may get beyond reasonable risk taking and become foolishness. Visiting a war zone for a vacation would qualify as foolishness in my book. I take the same approach when investing money. I consider the chances of losing and the consequences of the loss, versus the chances of winning. I do not gamble in the sense of betting on odds that mean that I will lose in the long run. As far as changing jobs: "If you never try, you will never know." For me the possibility of happiness in a secure job you do not like is zero, unless the job is a means to a rewarding end. I can be bought, especially if it will allow me to travel.
Bob, beautifully put - I wish I'd said that!
Yes Bob, well stated! I would add to one point you made. You said, "The problem with official travel warnings as with unofficial fears, is often the unspecified or unknown denominator." This is very true for the most part. Specifically, regarding the "official travel warnings," which generally are made not only because of the dangers of cultural clashes, war or criminal activity in a country, but also because the tourist's own government will be able to offer little or No help if the tourist runs into any kind of trouble. I don't know if this is the same for citizens of all countries, but it is true for the USA. Most American's don't seem to realize the implications of this aspect. Okay, some just don't care either. :-)
Great comments! I guess I think I am a good enough skier to NOT break a leg,but I know it could happen. I have generally more confidence in my own abilities than that of unknown other people. For example, when I drive myself, all I have to do is avoid other bad drivers from crashing into me. I have at least SOME control over the outcome. I also have a choice of what vehicle I drive. When I fly somewhere, or take a bus, or a train, I have NO control over who's driving. Might be someone that is sick, or crazy, or not paying attention. The mechanic of the plane might have had a bad day and not paid attention, the stupid airport security might have let the real terrorist through while strip searching the 5 year old girl. Whatever, my point is that I think I will take more risk if I feel like I am in control of the risk, and I will take less risk if someone else is in control.
I love to take risks . I have taken my life as a adventure . According to your scale I would mark 8 .