terça-feira, 15 de março de 2016

Women travelling alone

For all the years that I have this blog, I've been recieving e-mails and comments of women asking how I have the courage to travel alone. I actually never thought I'd have to have courage, just the desire to explore new places and a destination, and that was what I always did.

But I understand that for many people decide to travel all alone is a challange, that's why I decide to sit and talk with six woman from different countries and ages about this subject that can be controversial: Being a woman and travel alone.

Check out the result of the chats I had down bellow.

Don't have time to read? Go to the end of this post and whatch the video or click here.

Jana is a young 23 year-old German that has lived with the dream of visiting Brazil since third grade. Now, thanks to the fact that she has finished college and her friends are still studying, she is being able to realize her dream her own way.

This is the first time Jana travels alone, even though she spent a year in the United States when she was a teenager, the travel was organized by an agency and she had all the support, so that's really the first time she is on the road all by herself.

To Jana travelling alone makes her more open to met new people and make more conections with other traveles "If you're with someone you already have a set plan for the day, if you're alone you became much more flexible".

To her the most difficult part of this trip is the communication, because she doesn't speak any Spanish or Portuguese she spent three days a little bit isolated for being in a place where no one spoke English.

When asked is she ever feel lonely travelling alone her answer is sharp "No, there's always so many other travelers around, even on the days I'm completely alone, for exemple, I went to on a hiking and met some people on the way and we did it together, so no, it's very difficult to feel lonely".

The only difficult situation  that she went so far, was when she was in a not very nice area in Rio de Janeiro and almost got robbed, in that moment she says she would like to have someone with her.

Alicia is a 27 year-old Londoner who has been alone to eight countries.

Alicia says that she prefers to travel alone because she has much more freedom to do what she wants "When you're travelling with someone you have to follow their plans, and I like to do what I like to do, I don't have to wait for anyone, for me is easier to travel alone".

To her one of the best things about travelling alone is the passion that she has for discovering new cultures, new countries and specially trying new food. The fact of not being responsible for anyone else other than herself is a big positive point to her as well.

The possibility of being alone on her room reading all the time, or in a hostel that don't have many people there or yet, if you had an experience that you'd like to share with someone that you know are appointed by Alicia as the worst parts of travelling alone, but she likes to have some time  to herself, so she says that's not too bad.

Feeling lonely is something that can happen but Alicia knows how to handle the situation "If I feel lonely I'll give my mom a call back home, chat with her or I'll chat with my friends on Whatsapp or Facebook, it happens but is easy to deal with".

Alicia went through a situation when she wanted to be with someone when she was in Malasia, she spent one day with very bad headache and pain in her neck and she didn't know what to do, but she spent the whole day sleeping and slept through the night, and was fine on the next morning "It was a difficult situation, but was just one day, so it's was not so bad".

The message she has to women who are thinking about traveling alone and don't have enough courage yet is that there's no reason to be afraid and staying in hostels is always a good choice "There's  always people who have done the same rout as you and will give you advice, and people that work in hostels are always much more helpful than people that work in hotels".

Fernanda is a 23 year-old Brazilian that started travelling alone just a few months ago.

Her first experience started when she was on a beach with some friends, and when they decided to leave she decided to stay because she had made new friends, and that encouraged her to make another trip alone, this time to Sao Paulo.

To Fernanda the best part of travelling alone is the freedom on doing what she wants to do, it could be going out and explore the city or staying in and having long conversations with other people.

To her the negative part of travelling alone is the feeling of insecurity that can hit you in some situations "Do things alone but being at least a bit cautious".

When asked if she ever fell lonely she aswers "Yes, but not in a bad way, sometimes is good to be alone and think about life".

To those who are thinking about travelling alone Fernanda says that you should start with small and short trips.

Sara is a 30 year-old Spanish that decided to travel alone initially for two months, and is on the road for eight monts, she has visited a total of 13 countries in Central and South Americas.

Take the decison of traveling alone was not easy to Sara, her family didn't support her and just a friend gave her the support she needed.

Sara decided start travelling because she was in a moment of her life she didn't like, her job was good but not at her field, the plan was to spend a month in Cuba and a month in Mexico but she never stopped travelling.

To Sara the best thing about travelling alone is the fact of you being responsible for all the decisions "You decide what to do at every moment, you change your plans, is an incredible felling of freedom".

On the other hand travelling alone can be a little bit to much work "You're the one who have to look for timetables, hostels, look for what to do in the city, everything is your responsibility".

Sara says that she feel lonely sometimes during her trip, but that started to happen around the middle of the period that she's been travelling, but she says that chatting with her friends through internet always helps.

Sara consideres herself very lucky for having always bumped into incredible poeple and says that she was never in a situation where she wanted to have someone that she knew for a longer time because she met people that she considers her family.

To those who are gathering courage to start to travel alone she understands the feeling "It's complicated, I went through the same, I thought about doing it for months" and she concludes "Start with some small trips, of a week or so, in your country where you feel more comfortable. I'd encourage them because this is one of the best experiences of my life".

Yessica is a 25 year-old Dutch that travels alone since she was 18.

To Yessica the best part of travelling alone is the freedom to meet people and make conections "I don't think I'll do this forever, but I think this is the best age and circunmstance and I love it".

Yessica doesn't see many negative sides on travelling alone, to her the only negative side can be that if you get ill or sick and can't take care of yourself "But I've always running into people who were willing to help me whenever I felt like that".

To her, feeling lonely is not something that happens "The most important thing is that you have to be a good friend to yourself, if you're good friends to yourself, you're never lonely".

Yessica considers herself not a very shy person and very sociable and for that reason she says she was never is a situation where she wanted company of others "There's always nice people around if I fell like being sociable".

For women who are thinking abou travelling alone Yessica says "everyone needs to try basically everything in order to know whether they like it or not. There's obviously people who don't like to travel by themselves, but you can not know if you haven't tried".

Giulia is a 32 year-old Italian that started travelling alone one year 
ago and has already been to Greece, walked the Camino de Santiago de Compostella in Spain, and visited United States and Canada, all by herself. And now she is in South America, the first country she's visiting is Brazil.

To Giulia travelling alone is "A great way the discover the world and meet new people".

Giulia considers the best part of travelling alone the fact that there are no compromises "I can change my mind whenever I want, just go with the flow and that usually works very well".

To Giulia the worst part of travelling alone is security "Sometimes you can feel a little unsafe, I've never been in a  dangerous situation, but you have to be careful".

About feeling lonely Giulia says that's something that can happen "There are moments where you feel lonely, and sad, and you feel like going back home, but that's part of the game that you chose to play, and if you go through this moments you get stronger".

Giulia  went throug a difficult moment this trip, she was not completely alone but at that moment she wanted to have someone that she knew besides her.

For those who are thinking about travelling alone Giulia says "Stop thinking and start whit something small. It can look scary at first but that's just because you're not used to it, but that's something everyone can do. Start whit something small, try it and you'll love".

The video has subtitles in Portuguese and English starting at 38 seconds

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