Calling Albert Podell ‘well traveled’ would be an understatement. 78-year-old Podell, a former Playboy editor, can truly say that he’s seen it all, after spending half a century visiting every country in the world.
Podell was bitten by the travel bug at a very young age. When he was six he began collecting postage stamps and he remembers always wanting to have at least one stamp from every country in the world. “Getting a passport stamp from every one may have been inspired by that,” he says.
“Those little coloured bits of perforated paper also instilled in me a fascination with travel because I wanted to see the lands where all the objects, people, and places depicted on those stamps came from.”
Traveling to every one of the 196 officially recognized countries hasn’t been easy, especially on an accommodation budget of about $10 per night, and Podell admits he has been through some tough situations, like being unable to prove that he was not CIA to the Cuban secret police or nearly lynched in East Pakistan where he was mistaken for an Indian spy, but this kind of moments only added excitement to his epic journey around the world.