If you’re looking to travel to a country that doesn’t appear on your VPN
list, you might want to consider avoiding that country all together
(especially if you’re not American!). Why? You might find that the
country you’re visiting doesn’t offer the same free speech rights as
your own. So before you go there, make sure that you’re aware of what
kind of country you’re visiting!
Luckily, the internet is a vast place. There’s an abundance of
information online that can give you an idea of what kind of
country you’re visiting (and, more importantly, whether or not you
should visit it at all!). Let’s look at how we can use Google
(specifically, the search engine) to find this information.
Step one: Enter your country of interest into the search bar. If you
don’t know the exact name of the country you’re looking for, you can
use the search bar to find the closest city or place to your
location. For example, if you’ve set your VPN to connect to the
NordVPN server network in Sweden, you might enter “Sweden” into
the search bar to find results closest to you.
Step two: Once you’ve found your country, scroll down the page and
you’ll see a list of countries (in no particular order). To the right
of each country will be a green checkmark. If you scroll down the
page, you’ll see that every country except for the USA and Canada
has a green checkmark next to it. This means that the country you’ve
visited has been verified as a free speech country by NordVPN.
So what exactly does this mean? Well, it means that you have the
same freedom of speech rights in that country that you would have in
your home country. You should be aware that this is not always the
case, so you need to research the topic carefully before you make
your travel plans (especially if you’re planning on visiting a
particular country that has a different set of free speech rights
than your own).
The Best Travel Destinations for Free Speech
Now, to the topic at hand. Where is everyone traveling
to at this moment? Let’s look at Google Trends.
The trends panel on Google Search is a great way to get a general sense of how people are searching for information about a particular country. Looking at trends right now (November 2019), we can see that people from all over the planet are heading to Brazil, Argentina, and Chile. In fact, trends for all three countries are on the rise.
What’s interesting is that people are traveling to these
countries for the very same reason: To talk freely. According to
Google Trends, people in Argentina (a non-free speech country if you don’t believe the internet) and Brazil (a free speech country if you do) search for “free speech” more than any other country. Indeed, Argentina is even declaring a state of emergency because of the amount of traffic its search engine is receiving from all over the world.
Chile is also on the rise, with people from all over the planet searching for “free speech” more than any other country. So if you want to visit one of these countries, you’re certainly welcome, but you should know what type of country you’re visiting!
Avoiding Countries That Don’t Appear On Your List
Now, let’s say you’ve traveled to one of these countries (Argentina for
example) and you want to visit another (Sweden for example). You’ll
want to avoid entering Sweden into your Argentina VPN connection
settings (and vice versa). Why? Because even though it’s a freer speech
country, you’ll still have to watch out for what you say. If you
want to travel to another country that you’ve never been to before,
it’s a great idea to learn a bit of basic orientation and language. Here’s
a short list of how you can do that:
Start by Studying The Language.
If you’re visiting a country that you don’t speak the language, it’s
a great idea to learn a simple phrase or two before you even set foot in
the country. You’ll be able to get by with a simple “hello”, “please”, and
“thank you” (or vice versa). Learning a new language is not only accommodating
to your visitor status, but it’s also a great way to break the monotony of a
visit to a new country. So if you can, pick up a lingual dictionary or
phrasebook and learn a few words before you even visit. In addition,
learning a new language will open up a world of vocabulary and
cultural insights that will add value to your travel experience. And who
knows? You might even make a new friend along the way! (On a more serious
note, if you plan on visiting a country whose language you don’t
speak, making a conscious effort to learn a new language will not only
accommodate you to the society you’re visiting, but it’ll also enable
you to access a great deal of valuable information that might be
useful to you during your travel experience.)
Make Important Calls Using Your Phone’s Data.
While we’re on the subject of phones and data, let’s also discuss
using your phone’s data when you’re traveling. Most phones
today support being used in the country that you’re visiting. So
if you can find a WiFi signal when you are in a country whose
telephone networks are compatible with that of your home country,
you’ll be able to make and receive calls without any problems. (Just
make sure that you’re not in a country where the telephone
companies are charging extra for such calls or where VOIP isn’t
allowed (for whatever reason).)