Note: I tried to find a more appropriate StackSite, such as "statistics" or "social patterns" or something, but they don't exist. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that this probably is the best fit.

I'm "poor". I use quotation marks because I do technically have a roof over my head (although I'm not living here officially, and the person who does is paying rent every month, so they don't own it either), and I still can technically get some kind of cheap, mass-produced food into my body to survive. However, I live in what I would call relative misery, and it's been like this all my life. The only way I could be considered non-poor is if you compare me to people from "poor countries", which is a huge part of this world, but that doesn't help me one bit to know. It just makes me feel even worse.

Yes, I have countless times in the past tried to "get a job", worked on countless projects of my own, spent nearly every waking moment of my adult life trying to come up with a moral, legal way to make money. It doesn't help. It doesn't work out. But this is not about me; I'm trying to paint a background to my question.

For several reasons, only one of them being that I just couldn't afford it, I have basically never been outside my country, nor even outside my "area". In many ways, this happens to align with my actual desires, but there's still something sad about it. Living (as a native) in a "Western", "industrialized" country, I'm definitely in some kind of minority in this regard. I have never heard of anyone who hasn't had at least a dozen trips to some random exotic location such as Thailand or the Spanish islands. Most appear to have also visited the US, England, France and other "standard" locations, as if it's some kind of "unwritten law".

I would like to know how common this is. Am I in a 10%, 1%, 0.1% or even 0.01% group? Even smaller? Sometimes, it feels like I'm the only person except for people with some kind of serious physical illness or other "extreme situation" who have never had the ability, nor even the desire, to go to these places.

Don't get me wrong. The idea of instantly being teleported right now to a beautiful, exotic beach, walking in the clear water and the shining, fine sand as the Asian goddesses giggle and ask me to put sunblock on their backs, does sound very tempting. I'm not gonna lie. However, since in order for this to happen, I have to first amass the money required both for the actual trip, and for spending on hotels/food/entertainment, and then I have to go get a government passport, and then I have to book the flight, and then have to inconveniently go to the airport, deal with all the harassments there (face photo scans and whatnot), and then wait for the plane, sit in the plane with tons of people who make noises and livestream me with their phones, pray that it doesn't crash and finally repeat the ordeal at the location's airport, as well as the reverse when going back again.

And all that for the extremely unlikely fantasy of getting some kind of "love adventure" which is far more likely to result in me getting scammed/robbed in some way, or, one of my biggest fears, spending 25 years in Thai prison for failing to adhere to some bizarre law which I didn't even know about. That kind of thing does happen.

Basically, it's a nightmare of inconvenience for very little reward. But even if I wanted to, I have looked up the prices many times and it's not cheap! Especially not if you select the only sensible option of going straight to the location without any "land-in-betweens", which makes me skin crawl just thinking about it.

I'm sure that there is "some seldom-talked-about" group of citizens who are in my situation, but how would I obtain this data in a clear and reliable manner?

And if such stats can be obtained, will they say anything about why they are so "stationary"? Is it because they just can't afford to go anywhere, or because they really love the place where they were born and raised? I would be very interested in being able to see how many of those who are "stuck" in one place actually are there by choice and how many would leave the instant they were given the ability.

  • The travel SE would probably be a better fit, but I haven't looked at their rules travel.stackexchange.com
    – Nosjack
    Dec 26 '19 at 13:58
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    What do you mean by area”? I live in England. But France is 35 miles away, and I can drive there for the day for £20 in supermarket vouchers. Very many people in Europe have a different country within a short drive of them.
    – Mike Scott
    Dec 26 '19 at 14:52
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    This question is not about finance. Dec 26 '19 at 14:53
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    @DJClayworth more like a Quora question.
    – RonJohn
    Dec 26 '19 at 16:08
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    A quick search reveals that 42% of US citizens hold passports.
    – mkennedy
    Dec 26 '19 at 17:27

According to this US survey, 11% have never traveled outside the state they were born in. This is fairly close to the poverty rate. https://nypost.com/2018/01/11/a-shocking-number-of-americans-never-leave-home/

I am going to guess that another 10% rarely travel, i.e., they have technically left their state, but have no interest in travel.

Financially savvy people, always consider the cost/benefit ratio. And the cost is relative to their personal situation. Never do something because everyone else is doing it. Never jeopardize your food and shelter for luxuries.

I can't travel right now due to personal issues. So, I consider what a tourist would do if they came to my area. Be sure to enjoy all your local area has to offer. Of course, some will be expensive, but many will be free or inexpensive. For example, many local parks are free.

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