Reasons Why Latinas Should NEVER Solo Travel…According to Everyone Else
As a First Gen Latina, looking through the lens of how many of us are raised, I can’t think of a single reason why any of us would venture out into the world alone. After all, some of our parents raised us in very sheltered and controlled environments, taught us to place family first, to sacrifice our own desires for the benefit of the family, to stay in the company of others for anything deemed mildly dangerous, and to live in more traditional gender roles.
Many Latinas in previous generations would say, “who needs the stress and exposure to the dangers of solo travel when you can have the comfort of your own home?”; “Solo Travel, eso pa’ que??”
Women are typically discouraged from traveling solo or living their dreams mainly because of safety issues, “belonging safely at home,” family or societal expectations, lack of resources, and language barriers.
What if I told you there are many reasons Latinas should travel solo? That’s right! I’m here to debunk the myths and show you why solo travel can be the ultimate adventure for any Latina that needs that final push to go for it! If you are a Latina looking to break free from tradition and live your ancestor’s wildest dreams, read on.
For those of us itching to grow and to break generational cycles, think about the stereotypes surrounding us Latinas. For example, we’re stereotyped as hot-headed, emotional, and overly attached to our families, right? Well, guess what? Solo travel can help break those stereotypes, like a piñata at a birthday party.
Let’s talk about some of the most common and harmful myths about Latinas traveling solo:
Traveling alone is selfish.
How often have we heard our parents or other family members say, “Quien te dio permiso?” “Women shouldn’t travel alone” “What would you do if something bad happens to you?” And while yes, our family and friends think that any and all imaginable bad things can happen to us while solo traveling, we can also understand that they are coming from a place of love and fear of anything negative happening to us (their loved one).
I know that many Latinas are all about family. Still, sometimes we must break free and do our own thing, even when some of us are expected to prioritize our families over our desires. Doing something that lights your soul on fire does not make you selfish. On the contrary, we can be just as adventurous and independent as anyone else. And solo travel is the perfect way to prove to ourselves that we can do lo que nos da la gana!
Solo travel gives us a chance to discover our own independence and strength. We may be used to taking care of everyone else, but when we’re out there on our own, we learn how to take care of ourselves too.
So listen up Mujer! Give yourself permission to see the world, and do not hold back on your dreams and passions. If traveling the world is your life’s passion, do not think twice about going on your first journey.
By debunking this myth, we can show that Latinas can pursue our own passions and goals. Family and personal aspirations are not mutually exclusive for Latinas wanting to travel solo.
Latinas are not adventurous or brave enough to travel solo.
Some Latinas are stereotyped as timid or risk-averse. Solo travel requires a level of bravery or resilience that some consider we may not possess.
Amiga, once you decide to embark on your first solo travel, you will see the infinity of adventures that await! Trying new foods, meeting new people, and exploring new places – that’s what life is all about, am I right?
Solo travel allows us to reflect on our lives and determine how we want to live moving forward. Solo travel is an adventure and a personal journey of self-discovery. Even though travel is never a replacement for therapy, it can play a part in our healing journeys.
By venturing out on our own, we show ourselves that we’re independent, strong, and capable of taking care of ourselves. In addition, it gives us a chance to break away from those traditional gender roles that many have placed on us. Who says women can’t travel alone? And who says we can’t travel just as much as our male counterparts?
Speaking of which, have you noticed there isn’t enough representation of Latinas traveling and seeing the world? It’s time to change that, mi gente. By traveling through different parts of the world, we’re expanding our horizons and representing our culture and community. Let’s be honest. We need more Latinx / Latine representation out there. Who knows who we may inspire to travel too!
You shouldn’t travel because you will face discrimination or harassment.
This stereotype perpetuates the idea that we are vulnerable or weak and that we should be afraid to explore the world on our own. But in reality, Latinas can travel confidently to any destination we choose. Remember that the world is full of diversity, and not everyone will have the same perspective or experiences.
While it is true that discrimination and harassment can occur while traveling, it is essential to remember that these issues are not unique to travel. Discrimination and harassment can and do happen anywhere. Therefore, it is up to each individual to take the necessary precautions to stay safe and protect themselves. This may include researching your destination, being aware of cultural norms, dressing appropriately, and avoiding unsafe areas.
By letting fear or stereotypes stop you from traveling, you limit your potential and miss out on incredible opportunities. Instead, choose to embrace your dreams and pursue them with confidence and courage. You are capable of exploring the world on your own terms, and no one should stand in the way of your travel dreams.
By challenging this myth, we can show that Latinas are strong, resilient, and capable of navigating the world as we wish.
You are putting your life at risk.
Now, I know what you’re thinking – ‘but what about safety?’ Don’t worry, mija, we got this. With a bit of planning and street smarts, we can make sure we stay safe and have a blast at the same time.
To address your valid concerns, Latinas do not inherently put their lives at additional risk by solo traveling. However, women generally face safety risks while traveling solo, such as sexual harassment or assault, theft, or violence.
Luckily, many resources and strategies are available to help mitigate these risks, such as staying in safe accommodations, dressing appropriately, avoiding unsafe areas, and being aware of cultural norms and customs. Other concerns are related to cultural or linguistic barriers, racism or discrimination, and navigating unfamiliar customs or traditions. However, these concerns can be addressed and overcome with proper planning and research. For more safety tips, check out this article.
Solo travel is expensive.
Many people assume that traveling solo is expensive and cannot be affordable. However, with careful planning and budgeting, solo travel can be an affordable option for anyone. Many resources are available to help travelers find reasonable accommodations, flights, and activities.
Some resources that can be researched include budget-friendly accommodations, volunteering in exchange for room and board, house/pet sitting, transportation discounts, travel hacking, and many more. If you want it bad enough, you will find a way to prioritize travel.
Solo travel as a Latina may come with challenges, but let me tell you, it’s so worth it! So let’s shake off those old-school beliefs that tell us we can’t or shouldn’t travel alone and go out there and show the world what we’re made of! Now that we have debunked all those cuentos viejos, we can plan that first trip. Click here for the next article in the ultimate guide to help you get on your way.
We’re Latinas, and we can do anything we set our minds to. ¡Dale, que tú puedes!