TabiTori Character 2

Spontaneous Travel

Do you ever think that sometimes travel can be over-planned? Sometimes the best experiences just happen without any planning.

By relying on traditional travel apps you always end up going to the same places everybody else has, and the bias is always towards what other foreigners think, so the end result is that some of the best experiences you can have are missed. Do we really want to go where everyone else does, just because it seems to be the "safe" choice?

Iwakan (違和感)

Iwakan is defined as an uncomfortable feelingfeeling out of place or a general sense of discomfort. I think we all feel this from time to time when we travel, but more so in a place like Japan where the culture has a strong focus on politeness, appropriateness of behavior, shrouded in a set of complex, unwritten rules. 

Iwakan can be felt by either party - for example the service staff at a restaurant, or the guest. Iwakan is contagious as well - the discomfort of either one will spread to the other. Some people have the natural ability to minimize these feelings regardless of linguistic gap; sadly most of us are not so gifted and the avoidance of this feeling can cause us to bypass unique experiences, especially in places that are less visited by mainstream tourism.

Introducing Tabitori Travel Network

Tabitori Travel Network is a curated affiliation of service providers (restaurants, lodging, events, attractions, etc.) that are certified "foreigner friendly". Members of the network will have been selected as welcoming to foreign guests. Both service providers and guests will also have materials that are designed to reduce cultural friction, such as standardized menu translations, use guides and cultural tips. Guests can understand what are the unique local and regional aspects of of their experience are, and the proper etiquette of being a polite guest. Service providers will also understand the unique feelings of foreign guests and what to expect.