TRAVELER OF THE WEEK: IBUKUNOLUWA MAJEKODUNMI
THE TRAVELER OF THE WEEK IS IB
Estimated Reading Time: 3 Minutes
I know you guys hate lengthy introductions, so we'll dive right in to the interview. If you're a woman interested in solo travel, you will want to check out our featured traveler! Please give a warm welcome to IB!!!!
I want to talk to you about solo travel! How many places have you explored solo?
I have traveled by myself in Johannesburg, Mykonos, Portugal, and London. I also did a solo day trip in Austin, TX this year.
What do you enjoy most about solo travel?
Being pretty new to solo travel, I would have to say that I most enjoy having the autonomy to do whatever I want, and plan my trip to my needs. When traveling with a group, you often have to compromise to please everyone's needs. This often requires a lot of planning and sometimes sitting through (and paying for) activities that you don't care for. When I'm by myself, I can really wake up and do whatever I feel like doing in a new city without any restrictions.
What misconceptions do you think people have about women traveling alone? What has been your experience?
Traveling by yourself is lonely - When traveling with friends, you're often focused on talking and hanging out with the friends you came with. When I'm traveling by myself, I am forced to get outside of my comfort zone and converse with other travelers and locals. These interactions are by far the most fulfilling and have given me experiences that I would have never gotten if I traveled with friends. Also, if I ever feel the loneliness bug, there are tons of different tourist groups that organize social outings, walking tours, and dining events; which is a great way to meet other solo travelers.
Traveling by yourself is dangerous - Any sketchy situations that I have been in traveling solo, would have been just as sketchy with others. It's all about being responsible for yourself and being aware of your surroundings (as you always should be).
Has there ever been a time you were alone and felt uncomfortable or in danger? What did you do to get to safety...or remove yourself from an uncomfortable situation?
In Athens, I stayed at an Airbnb for a night before my flight back to the states. In the middle of the night, I heard noises in the house and I went with by gut instinct and packed up, called the police/Airbnb, and left early for the airport. This situation could've easily happened with additional travelers, but in sketchy situations like that, I just had to be logical and use my common sense :)
My parents freak out when I travel with a group of people. I don't even want to think about how they would react if I ever decided to travel by myself lol. Has your family always supported your solo adventures? If not, how have you made them feel more comfortable over the years about traveling alone?
My parents damn-near disowned me when I booked my first solo trip to South Africa when I was fresh out of undergrad. After a while, they kinda just got over it. I always make sure to keep in touch with my family everyday through WhatsApp to alleviate their worries. I also give my mother my itinerary and lodging for my trip in case of emergencies.
Name some important safety tips for traveling solo? Anything my readers may not know.
My biggest token advice is to use your common sense and follow your gut instinct. Another random piece advice is to not depend on your phone. Phones die and break, and you should always have a written record (I carry a small notepad) with your emergency contacts, addresses, basic directions, passport number, and any other pertinent details in case of emergency.
How can my readers reach you? Blog, Instagram, Facebook, etc.?
Instagram/Twitter - @ibonitt. Fun fact, I used to have a travel blog but I just recently retired it because I was focusing too much on blog content and less about enjoying my time traveling
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