The 13 Types of People You’ll Meet While Traveling

Brian M. Williams, JD
6 min readSep 21, 2021

In the course of traveling to more than 60 countries, I’ve met a lot of unique, insanely independent, and remarkably interesting people. That said, many of my trips have also featured plenty of stock characters, too. While I’m not for a second pretending to be offering a complete picture of anyone, I have made a list of some of the types of people that I can always count on running into in the course of any long trip.

The Where-is-McDonald’s Guy

Whether they’re in New Orleans, Hong Kong, Lima, Panag, or some other culinary capital of the world, this person will be looking for a familiar big-name chain restaurant to eat at and will do everything possible to avoid eating any of the local fare.

The Fool

I’ve met this person time and time again while traveling. They are usually some of the most happy-go-lucky people in the world. They’re friendly and easy to talk to and have a lot of crazy stories that leave you with your mouth open and wondering, “How the hell are you still alive!?” One girl I recently met said, and I quote, “I like to walk around a city until I get lost and then I just take a ride from a stranger to get back to where I’m staying.” These people prove the old adage “God looks out for children and fools.”

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Brian M. Williams, JD

IB Theory of Knowledge Teacher, Writer, Traveler, Mardi Gras DJ with a JD. Author of “Stranger in a Stranger Land: My Six Years in Korea” and “When a