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Unusual Travel Words for the Speechless Nomad

Ever sought to describe an experience abroad but have found yourself quite literally lost for words? Fear not. Below you’ll find a small compendium of peculiar travel related words you’ve never heard of but wish you had. Prepare to casually slip them into conversation and feel satisfied as your friends gape at your extended vocabulary. Or just feel like a pretentious douche and immediately regret it. There’s always that.

Strikhedonia (n.) Origin, Greek.

The pleasure of being able to say ‘to hell with it.’ As in ‘to hell with it,’ as you book tour and plunge into your overdraft.

Onism (n.) Origin, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows – John Koenig.

Awareness of how little of the world you’ll experience. Seen in the glazed eyes of Warwick students as they resign themselves to the bubble.

Resfeber (n.) Origin, Swedish.

The conflicted sense of fear and excitement before a journey begins. A journey on the uniexpress to Kasbah, perhaps.

Fernweh (n.) Origin, German.

A longing to travel that surpasses a mere wanderlust – a need akin to a sickness.

Coddiwomple (n.) Origin, Old English Slang.

To travel purposely to an undetermined destination. ‘Let’s coddiwomple until we find somewhere for pres.’

Dépaysement (n.) Origin, French.

Feeling like a fish out of water whilst abroad.

Hodophile (Adj.) Origin, Greek.

Lover of roads’ or ‘lover of travel.’ Could probably be applied to Stagecoach bus drivers, who seem to enjoy extending a supposed twenty minute trip into campus to a full forty-five minutes, taking a detour that encompasses the entirety of the Warwick countryside.

Hireath (n.) Origin, Welsh

A wistful longing for a place that you can never again reach, for the lost places barred by time’s inexorable passage. A place where good grades were once an attainable feat, perhaps.

Absquatulate (v.) Origin, North American English

This one was coined in the US in the 19th century, its polysyllabic Latinate structure an attempt to make it seem older. It has a slightly mournful meaning – to leave without saying goodbye.

There you have it – nine spectacular travel words to add to your vocabulary. Get ready to attempt to inconspicuously slip them into conversation, and immediately regret it as your more knowledgeable friends tell you you’re using them incorrectly.


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