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What was your first holiday without your parents?

What was your first holiday without your parents?

Old Jul 26, 19, 10:14 am
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I was 17 and traveled to the Netherlands with my parents (from the US) and did a two week trip to Paris by myself.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 11:19 am
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Would have been my sophomore year of college, when I drove up with a friend to Montreal for about three days. Went up with no real plan or anything booked, found and checked into a motel by the highway in Brossard (first time I ever booked a hotel myself), parked downtown and just wandered around.

At the time I had no idea that Montreal and Quebec were actually French-speaking. I thought it would be like New Orleans, with a historic French link that has nothing at all to do with everyday life. When we crossed the border, English disappeared from the signs, and the radio turned entirely to French, I was pretty damn surprised.

I wish I could say I got into mischief, but we didn't even go to a bar, as far as I can recall. I think we just wandered around downtown and Old Montreal; not even sure we took the Metro or went to the Plateau (which is my home away from home there now.) The things 19-year-old me should have done...
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Old Jul 26, 19, 11:41 am
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On a summer-long family trip to Europe in 1967 (at age 12), my parents allowed me and my 7 yo brother to roam freely in Paris for most of a day. I'd been studying french for several years, and I'd committed the map of Paris to memory. No cell phones, no recourse if we got lost. But all went well, and we met up with our parents as planned at 5pm at the Cafe de la Paix, Place de l'Opera. It was a grand experience.
My parents really believed in travel, and it certainly rubbed off on me.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 2:07 pm
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Boring compared to others, 16 or 17 back in 89', trip with the school to MCO via DEN (Stapleton). Spent the night in the airport because of a massive blizzard that shut everything down, with a new flight to Tampa 28 hours later. Good times and we made the best of it. Don't think anyone slept that night, as we had too much fun.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 2:16 pm
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Summer of '73. I was 16 and I went from a town outside Baltimore to Muncie Indiana for a 2 week journalism workshop @ Ball State U.. On a Greyhound through Pittsburgh. By myself. I am now, and was at the time, not sure if they wanted me to get permanently lost. My first airplane vacation was a 6 week, all expense paid vacation at Lackland AFB, San Antonio a few years later.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 2:30 pm
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Not a true vacation, but I went on an university exchange program to Korea five years ago right when I turned 21. I did have my first vacation without my parents that same year, as I stopped in Japan for a few days right before I returned home.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 7:09 pm
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$10 PSA weekend red-eyes from LAX-SFO while in high school. We’d hitchhike into Berkeley with our backpacks and visible paper map, both advertisements that we were just passing through and needed a place to crash for a couple days while attending outdoor concerts and getting to know the locals. Always made it back in time for Monday morning classes.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 8:26 pm
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OK - so from the title I thought this thread would be about your first holiday (Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc.) after both your parents had died!

Glad to see it’s a happier topic.

Mine was a road trip the summer after my freshman year of college with my brother and a friend of ours (both of whom had just graduated from high school) and our friend’s brother (who was 13). We went to a Major League ball game one night and spent the next day at an amusement park.
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Old Jul 26, 19, 11:41 pm
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School trips aside, mine was a ski trip to the Red Mountain in the interior of British Columbia. My travel buddy had recently taken a job as a travel agent so all I had to do was show up.
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Old Jul 27, 19, 2:02 am
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Not including school trips, my first holiday without my parents was the summer when I was 17. I told them I was going to the South West coast of England to work in a bar and restaurant. I actually dumped my bags in a friend’s cupboard then hitchhiked with two friends from Manchester to Fontainebleau. I spent five weeks sleeping in the forest at night and bouldering during the day. I somehow lived on about £10 per week. I only ended up telling my mum what I really did three years ago at the age of 37.

It was one of the best times of my life. I especially remember how people generous would be to us, like when four Austrian climbers let us sleep in their gite during a two day rainstorm and shared their beer and “cigarettes” with us, and how the local climbers would drive us to interesting areas of the forest to expand our horizons a bit. It was the first and only time I ever climbed Font 7C and the feeling of elation as I topped out is still burned into my brain.
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Old Jul 28, 19, 8:55 am
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Age 22 with a friend from college. We had never been out of the country (well, I had been to a couple of Caribbean islands with my parents) so we got a student fare to London and spent 10 days on a trip around England and Scotland. I still remember the fare from STA Travel was $425 and I loved flying Virgin Atlantic. The moment we came up out of the Tube in central London and the first thing I saw were the 4-5 story limestone buildings was magical.
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Old Jul 28, 19, 9:25 am
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Camping in the New Forest with some (still) very good friends of mine around age 16.
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Old Jul 28, 19, 1:18 pm
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My first trips without my parents were ski trips. First one was at the age of 15 via a travel agency one of my school teachers had. Mainly for organising language trips in the summer but the year he was my teacher, he started offering ski trips. Half of my class joined making it an enjoyable trip.

First solo trip was 9 days to the US when I was 24. Road trip NY - Philly - Washington - Gettysburg - Niagara Falls - NY
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Old Jul 28, 19, 8:20 pm
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Had a school trip to DC at age 12, but after that my first real trip without my parents was when I was 19, I went to Montreal with my younger sister (17 at the time). Took the train up from NYC, and stayed at the Montreal YWCA. I carried a letter from my parents stating my sister was OK to travel with me and not running away, just in case. DIdn't do anything that could get me in trouble but enjoyed the sightseeing and being in a different country (my first time out of the US). My first air trip was to London when I was 22, among seeing the sights, I randomly stumbled upon seeing Prince Charles and Princess Diana leave the hospital with newborn Prince Harry!
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Old Jul 28, 19, 8:56 pm
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When I was 15 (I turned 16 during that trip), I did a summer English class/holiday in Toronto for two months and I had flown on my own with my high school friend at the time. Stayed with a host family in Scarborough and had to commute to downtown by a combination of foot, bus and subway. Toronto was the first city that I've ever visited in North America and so it still holds a lot of sentimental value to me.

The next time I set foot there, it had been 11 years since that summer and I had way more control over my life and a green card. So every time I visit YYZ, I reminisce about how different everything was back then before smartphones and Google Maps and the like.
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