I have been a solo or a 'twin' traveller all my life. A few months back I came across this wild idea of going on a women only trip with a bunch of strangers. It was a challenge that I gave myself and I just took the plunge. To my surprise, the trip was so good that here I am writing a blog about it. You won't trust me when I say a women only trip is one thing that should definitely be on your bucket-list! And why?
Everyone knows by now that the people you travel with are just as important – if not more so – than the places you’ll go. Sure, you can jet off to countries all over the world and explore them by yourself, but let’s face it, it’s just so much more fun to have partners in crime to share your crazy adventures with and well, bail you out in the event it’s required.
Travel long enough and you’ll come to realize that there are certain types of people who seem to cross your path repeatedly, especially if you’ve chosen to join a women-only group.
To assist you in judging a book by its cover, here’s a short list of 9 types of women you’re likely to meet on your travels. Chances are, you may even be one of these yourself. I am tagged as the seasoned adventuress by many, and an Instagram addict ;)
1. The Instagram Addict
It’s not hard to spot the Instagram Addict given that they come with a phone, camera or selfie stick attached to their hand at almost all times. The thing is, they’re often more focused on taking filtered pictures of impressive surroundings than well, appreciating the impressive surroundings itself, and will most likely try to either drag you into – or away – from the frame to improve their picture. Okay, so their fanaticism may get annoying at times but it’s sorta adorable as well, plus, at the end of the day - they’re likely the ones you’ll be asking for help in getting picture-perfect shots of yourself.
2. The Seasoned Adventuress
You wish you were her. She has it all figured out – from the correct power adaptor plug to the best places to change currency. She somehow knows the best neighborhood joints and cafés with character, and the best places to shop three minutes after the plane lands. Don’t question her. Or do – she’s got the best stories to back up every answer she has. She’s been everywhere, done everything, but still, her wanderlust burns as bright as the lamp she just got you a 30% discount on, you’re welcome. Easy friend made, right there.
3. The Rookie
Prepare to feel like the Seasoned Adventuress as this lady asks you for what feels the tenth time whether or not the plane’s somehow come and gone without its passengers. Wide eyed, and excited, this first time traveller’s bursting at the seams (just like her overpacked suitcase is) with enthusiasm and hopeless, hopeless, optimism. Spend some time with her and you’re bound to catch some of her infectious zeal.
4. Charlie’s Angels
There’s nothing wrong with travelling alone, but nothing quite beats having your best friends at your side, every step, drive and flight of the way – at least these women think so. While it’s technically a cheat to club a group of women under one heading, you’ll soon recognize that these women essentially function as a unit – one’s got the suntan lotion, one’s planned out the itinerary, and one’s ordering drinks for the three of them. In all fairness, they are usually a friendly bunch and it’s always triple the fun when they’re around.
5. The Solo Traveller
Some women really value their me-time on the road. This lady is more than happy to be a part of the group and engage in socializing when needed, but is most likely to slip away from the group from time to time in search of much needed alone time. She almost always has her earphones handy and will seek opportunities to retreat into her cocoon. She is more than happy to share that packet of chips with you during a long bus ride, but as long as you do so in silence.
6. The Fusspot
The chronic complainer can be easily identified by their oft and loud complaints about just about everything, from the bathroom soaps to the lack of Indian food, the sandiness of the desert to sunsets that were not as spectacular as they imagined they would be. Generally they’re harmless if not a little irritating.
7. Lady Half-Here, Half-Home
Brace yourself, it won’t be long before she’s pulling out pictures of her pets, and telling you adorable tales about the family’s youngest member. She’s just likely a little homesick, and could use a hug now and then – and know that she’s going to be spending just as much time with her friends and family back homing talking about that nice lady (you) she met on her journey.
8. Ms. Easy Feet
For some, the idea of intense physical activity during a vacation is incomprehensible. Ms. Easy Feet runs on island time and her most enjoyable part of her days on vacation is the afternoon siesta. Her idea of sightseeing includes time at the hotel spa and long, lazy lunches. Beware of her on days with an early start – she is likely to be grumpy and will probably take two days to catch up on her beauty sleep.
9. The Partner-in-Crime
If you ever need an accomplice or a partner in crime, she is it. The energizer bunny of the group, she is up for anything and ready to do everything. If you feel like experimenting with the delicious but potentially deadly street food you saw earlier, she’s got your back. She’s going to be the first to scope volunteers to join her on that crazy bungee jump, or to order shots at the bar. One word of caution – her enthusiasm is addictive, so make sure you’ve had your share of coffee for the day.
So, you might meet one of these ladies, you might meet all, but regardless of whom, they’ll definitely make a mark on your travels. It truly doesn’t matter where you go, adventures, silly escapades, laughter and great times are always best shared.
Here are 3 travel companies that stood out for me in my research for women travel groups and I am glad I went with one of them -
1. ‘F5 Escapes’ is a Bangalore-based, alternate travel company, specializing in designing and executing all-women travel experiences. They offer all-women fixed departure tours and custom itineraries for women groups and families.
2. 'Byond Travel' believes in bringing together communities of travellers who share common interests. They organize and lead small-group journeys for like-minded travellers. Their groups range from women-only travellers to yoga, bikers to wine lovers, mom & kids and more.
3. 'Women on Clouds' is the place for women who wish to travel with their mothers, sisters, girl friends and /or in the company of other women instead of traveling alone.
I would love to have some of you join me on my next adventure :)