Tim Leffel’s World Worsts
Name Tim Leffel
Who? Author of The World’s Cheapest Destinations and his rants can be found on the Cheapest Destinations blog. He is also editor of the award-winning narrative webzine Perceptive Travel and runs the Practical Travel Gear blog.
Countries Visited About 45
1. Worst Bus Ride On the island of Flores, Indonesia. Apparently the locals don’t travel much and their stomachs are very weak. Every bus ride we took people were shouting “plastique!” to get a shopping bag to throw up into. If there was no plastique, the vomit went out the window, onto the floor, or onto an unfortunate seat-mate.
2. Worst Toilet Too many nasty ones to pick a definitive worst since I’ve spent a lot of time in Asia. But for my wife who was with me on my first long trip it would be the one in Nagarkot, Nepal where she had to go down two flights of steps to an outhouse, fill up a bucket to flush the squat toilet, then repeat the process all night while coping with a terrible case of the runs.
3. Worst Car Rental My recent attempt to rent from Hertz in Merida, Mexico. After looking at my reservation and taking us and all our luggage from the airport to their off-site office, they said, “We must tell you that we don’t have any cars to rent today.”
4. Worst Meal Pretty much every meal I ate in the Philippines. There’s a good reason you don’t see Philipino restaurants anywhere else.
5. Worst Train Ride One from Delhi to Bombay that was supposed to be an already grueling 24 hours. It turned into 36 hours, much of the extra 12 hours was spent stopped in a nasty station in alcohol-free Gujarat with the train fans turned off and the temperature at around 100F.