Travel is an outstanding way to get out of your daily grind and enrich your life. At Nice Avocado we are always looking for ways to encourage women to do it – we want you out there exploring! Women who talk about traveling out loud are met with a variety of responses – “OMG you’re going where? Don’t you know how dangerous that is?” or “You’re seriously thinking about traveling ALONE?” Real talk? These naysayers irk us, but they’re not wrong. Traveling while female can be stressful and dangerous. You should still do it. We’re going to give you some tips on how to maximize your fun and stay safe while heeding the call of the wild.
Nice Avocado Co-Founder Cricky and her partner Deb have taken travel a step further. In September 2012, they made the decision to detach from their abode in Tampa, Florida and live a location-free lifestyle. First stop – a goat dairy farm in North Florida, followed by five years of lifestyle traveling including destinations like Texas, New York, Canada, Mexico, the Virgin Islands, Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Azores, mainland Portugal, Scotland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, United Kingdom and Ireland. Dizzy yet?Here are Crick and Deb’s 19 Tips for Traveling while Female:
- Research the culture of the place you’re visiting & be respectful of it. Try to dress like at least somewhat like a local- you’ll make friends and you’ll be less likely to be targeted by robbers and other nefarious creatures.
- Keep your wits about you - if a place/situation would skeeve you out if it happened at home, avoid it on the road, too.
- Let people know where you’ll be and when-ish. Keep regular contact with a few people back home that you trust- if you disappear for a while, they’ll realize it and know where you last were/intended to go.
- Honor your strength & independence. Trust yourself. You’ve survived this long.
- Be aware but not suspicious.
- Be open to new experiences but don’t ignore your intuition or your head.
- Stay hydrated ALWAYS. Carry water purification tabs if clean water might be an issue.
- Motion sickness pills or wrist bands or both – have them.
- Always carry snacks.
- Diva cup + THINX panties for your monthly hell, iron supplements if you need them.
- Learn a few words and key phrases of the language and show the locals you’re trying.
- Get good sleep & rest, don’t burn-out.
- Take only what’s absolutely necessary- carrying extra sh*t becomes a huge pain in, like, 2.5 minutes...bring a couple of outfits you can mix and match, darker colors and natural fabrics so you can get away with not washing them after every wear. You’re also less likely to be robbed if you’re traveling light and don’t look like a clueless tourist.
- Try to avoid that “deer in headlights” look at all times.
- Know your embassy’s location and emergency numbers.
- Keep copies of ID & Travel Docs in a safe place in case your originals get stolen or misplaced. We generally stash our passports and walk around with just a copy of our photo passport page. Take pictures of all your IDs and travel docs and upload them to a secure site like DropBox or Google Drive or iCloud that you can access from any computer.
- If you’re American, register with the U.S. Dept of State - they’ll notify you if the shit hits the fan at home or in the place you’ve traveled to.
- There are slash-proof/ theft-deterrent bags out there - use them.
- Try to make female local friends - they’ll clue you in to where to go, what to do, and what to avoid.
So, go out there, get after it – and share your experiences with other women to encourage them to do the same.
Keep an eye on the blog for our next installment of empowerment-focused musings by Nice Avocado’s founders. Go forth and slay!