It might seem like something of an ambiguous question but the answer is a lot more straight-forward than you’d think.
It is not the number of places you have been to or length of time you spend away from home that makes you a traveller. What makes you a traveller is your lust and hunger for travel. The need to see so much more than what you know. It’s about refusing to be complacent and recognising your potential to be “more”. Wanting to find out more, to do more, to experience more.
Contrary to popular opinion, visiting a large number of countries and increasing the tally of sights seen doesn’t automatically make you a traveller. No matter how much we all obsess about it, increasing that tally of countries visited has more to do with opportunity, and perhaps even wealth, than it does to do with being a ‘true’ traveller. The tally of countries visited is part of it in a way, yes, but all that does in the first instance is make you an observer – someone who was there.
The thing that makes you a true traveller is the partaking and immersing yourself in whatever part of the world you find yourself in. The traveller are the people who eat the local foods, are always thirsty to see the sights, meet the people and always come back home thirsty for more. It’s that thirst and hunger that really defines you as a traveller, not the opportunity you have had to see all the places you want to.