I’m writing this to you, from the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, somewhere between
Uruguay and Brazil, and I can think of few times in my life when I’ve been happier.
Women are starting to travel more now than ever before, but too many of us are held
back by fear.
I am the founder and creator of a company called Go! Girl Guides, that publishes the
world’s first series of travel guidebooks made just for women. Why, just for women, you
ask? Well, women travel much differently than men. We have more to think about—
safety, health and managing all of this in a world that can feel inherently chauvinistic,
The problem is, we’re worrying too much.
The fear of the unknown keeps us at home, where we make up justifiable excuses as to
why we aren’t traveling—our jobs, our boyfriends, the money we don’t have and the debt
that we do. All of us, as smart, strong, independent women, need to work on changing
If you have wanted to travel in your life, there is absolutely no reason as to why you
Don’t have money? Go volunteer somewhere, where your accommodation and food
are taken care of. Or, find a job that pays you to travel. I’m currently working as the
communications coordinator for the Fall 2012 voyage of Semester at Sea, hence the
reason I’m in the middle of the ocean.
Have a partner who can’t or won’t travel? Cool, they’ll be waiting for you when you get
back (or not, and maybe that’s for the better). Worried about finding a job when you get
back? I’ve left and returned to the working world a dozen times now, and each time, I
rock my interviews with stories of what I’ve been doing the past year.
I work really hard at encouraging women to travel, but too often, I meet strong, amazing
women who say to me, “Wow. I’d love to travel, but….”
Yes, traveling can be scary. There is always the fear that something wrong could happen
to you, but something could just as easily happen to you on your way to your hometown
Having now traveled to 6 of the 7 continents, including South America where I was more
or less alone, I can honestly tell you that the worst thing that’s ever happened to me while
traveling was getting a few blisters on my feet.
What is it that’s holding us back? Fear. And that’s exactly why we need to get out there
and start traveling. Prove to yourself, to your family, to your friends, to the people of
other countries, to whomever it is you feel is doubting your ability to survive in a foreign
country that you absolutely can do it, and do it quickly.
When you do, we—myself, my business and the thousands of other women who have
discovered their identities and passion for life while on the road—will be here to
welcome you into the club.