May was a month of extremes in travel news. Big highs, big lows and some Canadian elbows. Okay that's a stretch but it does have to do with lady parts, which are also heavily featured in one of the chosen articles of the month. If that doesn't get you excited, then try to channel your inner Candace Payne. When was the last time that you were as excited about anything the way she is about her new Chewbacca mask? Okay, that is a pretty high bar to set. But I hope you can reach that level of joy while traveling or planning your next trip, because it’s pretty great, and getting giddy every now and then makes life worth living! If you don’t want to get excited about packing though, I forgive you. Packing is a task that was made by the devil. Let’s get angry about packing! Arghhhhhhhhh! The articles this month will dance between these extremes of exciting discovery and head-banging cuckooness. Enjoy!
+ Pilot Bluetooth Earpiece Crowdfunds the dream of universal, instant, language translation
Excerpt: “Waverly Labs will sell the earpieces with language packages for English, Spanish, French and Italian included for free. Additional languages will be available for download later for an additional fee and the company is considering licensing packages to businesses in bulk as well.” Continue reading.
+ Narrowing the gap: Women in the travel industry
Some exciting stats came out this month (May 2016) that reflect what many of us already suspected - women are making most of the decisions when it comes to holiday planning, more women travel solo than men and women make up the majority in travel industry sales roles. However, despite these figures, the top brass continues to be the typical ol’ boys club.
Fortunately, efforts are being made to change this situation and this month, Travel Weekly featured one such outfit. Women in Travel (Winit) was founded two years ago to provide greater resources to women in the industry and help them to rise the ranks and change this landscape for good.
Excerpt: “Despite the large number of women who make up the travel and tourism workforce, when you look at the boardrooms and C-suites at some of the largest global travel companies, the numbers range from as low as one woman on an executive team of 25 at Las Vegas Sands (4% representation), to as high as 33% at American Airlines, where there are three women on the nine-person management team.” Continue reading.
+ Nine places where women are banned - and one where no men are allowed
Unfortunately, there were plenty of horrendous goings-on this month and it was actually tough to narrow the plethora down to just one ‘ugly’ article. However, I think I’ve found a winner because it brings together 9 different places from around the world where women are banned from entering - whether it’s because of your anti-sporting physique, inherent godlessness nature, or offensive menstruating vajayjay, you don’t belong.
However, if you’re a young female student, you’re at least wanted somewhere - in an airplane seat next to a businessman so you can beguile him with your hilarious wit and charm. From the Telegraph, we get a reminder of just how much we women suck in the eyes of the world.
Excerpt: “Since 1991 all women between the ages of 10 and 50 (at an age when they could be menstruating) have been banned from worshipping at this Hindu shrine in Kerala.” Continue Reading.
Until next month Travelhers, keep your head up and travel on. xx
Do you ever have one of those weeks where you feel like you’ve been running on a treadmill and just need to get off for a minute? This is me at the moment, metaphorically catching my breath, sweating and taking a giant gulp of water. Aren’t you glad I painted that picture for you? To give you an idea of my mindset, I went for a hike yesterday to think about the meaning of the universe and then intentionally watched a movie about death, so you may find that the collection of stories today are leaning a touch towards the philosophical. But I promise they are not at all depressing and dang if they don’t make you think!
+ In a perpetual present - Wired
As someone who quite fanatically captures travel memories in photos, blogs and videos, it is hard for me to imagine not being able to associate any of those moments to the emotion felt at the time they happened. Travel experiences are meant to be relived and I imagine doing so when I prepare to go off to my ‘happy hunting grounds’ (this is a saying I learned from my grandmother - it turns out once you turn a certain age you have free reign to mention your looming death at any time).
Excerpt: "Spend enough time with McKinnon and it’s hard to escape the creeping sense that she’s not just different - she’s lucky. Memories that would be searing to anyone else leave little impression on her." Continue reading.
+ It turns out money can buy happiness but only if you spend it in the right way - Quartz
Somewhere along the way, some crazy hippy said something about money not being able to buy you happiness. I think we all know that is a false statement unless you are inherently unlikeable for some reason. The conspiracy theorist inside of me thinks it was an idea created by the rich and powerful to make us all subservient and ambitionless. “Money is evil everyone, let us handle it and save your souls.”
Quartz relays the latest studies that show that when you get to choose where to spend your money based on the activities you enjoy, there is a definite link between your joys and your dollah dollah bills yo. This seems pretty straightforward but hey, if you need an extra reason to take that trip - here it is.
Excerpt: "The participants took a happiness test before being given the voucher, after receiving it, after using the voucher, and after engaging in the prescribed activity for 30 minutes. And so the researchers could determine that extroverts told to spend $10 at a bar were made considerably happier than introverts given the same activity, while the reverse was true for those sent to the bookstore." Continue reading.
+ After mother’s death in road rage, she opened women-only travel firm - Hindustan Times
Sometimes ugly things happen in life and there is nothing you can do about it. The question then becomes what you do after - become bitter and afraid or strong and determined? The Hindustan Times tells us of one such crossroad faced by an Indian woman whose mother was murdered while trying to save two young girls. Wanting to help other females, she has shown amazing strength in choosing to turn the experience into a solution for female travellers to India.
Excerpt: "She had then met a Canadian woman who needed a guide. A regular at Manikaran, she offered to double up as a guide and both hit it off very well. She realised women travellers were more comfortable with a woman guide. The Canadian woman sent her friends to India and she got her first clients." Continue reading.
Thanks for reading Travelhers. Have an amazing week - keep your head up and travel on.
The clocks fell back an hour for us this week in the southern hemisphere which means I’m truly confused about what time of year it is. It feels like back-to-school shopping, Halloween and pumpkin pie but it’s actually… I don’t even know what - colder? Darker? New Zealandier? I hope you all in the north are getting some springtime fever and blooming flowers. Either way, change is-a-happening and that is why we’re featuring articles that focus on change in the travel industry. Buckle up, it’s going to be as shocking as the Panama Papers. Okay probably not, but it’s still pretty cool.
These cabin innovations from the Crystal Cabin Awards as summed up by Mashable will make you feel a sense of hope - much like when you discover your allocated plane seat is in an empty row, giving you three seats to yourself for a long haul flight. *Queue ‘the hills are alive with the sound of music’*.
Excerpt: "Rebel Aero won an award for its new Economy seat which is a departure from the norm: two seats in one. The Rebel Aero seat lets you sit as you normally would, comfortably (well, plane comfortably), or sit/standing with the seat bottom folded up.
Before you say, I don't want to fly standing up, this isn't about that. It gives passengers the option to stretch their legs, and shift position." Continue reading.
+ 8 Women Shattering the travel industry’s glass ceiling
This article is also from Mashable, but what can I say - they came out with some real gems this week. Profiling some of the top female brass in tech and travel, this article will get you thinking like a boss. Share it with your sisters, daughters, aunts, mothers - and brothers too - #gitgoingurl.
Excerpt: “We wanted to highlight a range of badass #GirlBosses in a variety of travel companies from massive corporation to startups to more intimate mom-and-pop shops in order to show there’s more than one way to be a fabulous woman working in the travel industry.” Continue reading.
Ever feel creeped out by your cab driver? Perved on during a bus ride? Harassed in a train car? Well, unfortunately you’re not the only one.
I’d like to think of them as short-term solutions to a long-term effort to address the real problem - a society that accepts men as having so-called ‘inherent’ disgusting behaviour tendencies, whilst putting the onus on women to protect themselves. Will this problem ever be truly addressed? I’m curious to your thoughts on this. Do you think sex segregation is a necessary evil or a step backward?
Thanks for reading Travelhers. Until next week, keep your head up and travel on.
Greetings Travelhers, we hope you’ve had a fab week and avoided any humiliating April Fools shenanigans. Equally, we hope you’ve managed to pull off some epic pranks yourself. This one from Expedia about a new airline for redheads is my personal favourite. Besides the jokes, this week has brought up some less than funny realities about gender inequality. Don’t worry though, my cat has just snuggled next to me and these articles are all about progress so by the end you’ll definitely feel warm and fuzzy inside (and probably a touch worried about my cat obsession).
+ The Lenny Interview: Melinda Gates
This week’s good article award goes to an interview from Lenny - the feminist newsletter created by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner. If you’ve not yet subscribed to this letter, let me just say that reading it makes me feel as good as it does when my cat jumps up and rubs against me on her own free will . Pretty amazing stuff.
Excerpt: “We start with an economic approach. We look at what are the greatest causes of death in the developing world, and what causes the largest amount of disability, which would prevent you from getting a job. We go down that list of deaths and say: Where could we intervene? What new tools, what new research, science, medicines, and vaccines or tools like a bed net, could actually affect the disease and bring the deaths down?” Continue reading.
+ 10 of the most inspiring contemporary female adventurers [via The Guardian]
Badass female adventurers may not grace our cinemas or television screens very often, but fear not: they exist.
Excerpt: “She’s a runner, skydiver, bungee jumper, climber, cyclist and world traveller… and a former banker. In 2013 she swapped the rat race for marathons and other gruelling challenges and is currently training for the world’s toughest footrace, the 200-mile Marathon des Sables across the Sahara.” Continue reading.
This is actually an excellent article: what’s ugly is that women still have to go to extreme lengths to get paid what they’re worth. And by extreme lengths, we don’t mean an awkward conversation with your boss. This week, several members of the USA national women’s soccer team filed a federal complaint against U.S. Soccer Federation, accusing it of wage discrimination. As this article from the Boston Globe explains, the age old argument of men earning more revenue is proved false and the girls tried every other avenue to be heard first only to be ignored.
Thanks for reading Travelhers, we hope you have an amazing week. Until next time, keep your head up and travel on!
Ahoy hoy Travelhers, I hope you had a lovely Easter break wherever you are. Whether you were visiting the fam jam, jetting off to a new location or hosting out of towners, I’m sure you had a taste of the absolute madness of what it’s like to travel during public holidays. Let’s just say we want everyone to travel and travel hard, but it would be great if it wasn’t at the exact same time, you know what I’m saying? New Zealand is on the mellow side but you can definitely feel the frenzied “I’M FREE” vibe in the air. Anywho, I’m on the road for one more day and therefore writing to you from Starbucks and sucking back a dark mocha frappuccino with whip cream to squeeze the last drop of glorious sugary sweetness from this mini holiday. My head is still in camping, sun, and swimming mode so bear with me as all of my metaphors will be outdoors related.
+ 2 hour lines at the Airport? Brutal - and a security risk, experts say [via Reveal]
If you’ve ever travelled in the United States, you know the intense security situation and the unpleasantness of waiting for what can sometimes be hours in various lines to finally at long last get to your gate at the airport (and then promptly get in another line to board the plane). It’s kind of like sand all up in your business after spending a day at the beach. You know this is a necessary part of the equation if you’re going to enjoy the fruits of the glorious waves, sun and fun but it doesn’t stop you from trying desperately to avoid letting those little grains of irritation into your life and figuring out how it happens despite your best efforts to shake it off, shake it off. This article from Andrew Becker gives excellent insight as to why why why those lines happen. Whilst there is no solution in sight, I feel a little better knowing the behind the scenes chaos so I can calm the f down and I think you will too. Continue reading.
+ Gloria Steinem on How Female Flight Attendants Fought Sexism in the Skies [via Conde Nast]
Whilst sexism in the workplace is alive and well, there is no doubt that strides have been made in certain industries and specific areas of the planet. One of these is definitely above the clouds where requirements to be employed once upon a time were youth, unattachment and of course, physical attractiveness. Okay, this may not sound very different from some of the current establishments out there – whether it be restaurants, retail or even airlines, but I promise you it is. Gloria Steinhem beautifully recounts her experience of watching the industry change over the years, a transformation which could be best illustrated by the campaign slogans of the times. “I’m Sandy, Fly me” back in the 70s led eventually to some strong badass bitches fighting the fight and ultimately wearing buttons with sayings like “I’M LINDA, FLY YOURSELF”. It’s a fascinating read that will get your feminist blood pumping. Continue reading.
+ How Hotels Are Capitalising on Women’s Fears of Travelling Alone [via Broadly]
Okay, this is actually a really good article about the travel industry’s realisation that there is growing opportunity in catering to the female traveller. Why the headline has to make women sound fearful to get people to click on it makes me feel the same way I do when trying to stuff a sleeping bag into an obviously too-small sac – very annoyed and so very very sad. Despite this questionable introduction, author Kat Lister does a great job covering some of the demands of the solo female demographic and the regions and businesses who are answering the call. If you are heading to London for example, you may find hotels that are taking convenienceand safety to exceptional levels. Small-sized slippers that actually fit your feet anyone? How about a female escort to walk you to your room? Acknowledging that some of these attempts are weak gimmicks, there is also the very practical additions that could provide that extra layer of comfort and attention that men having been getting since before sleeping bags and their sacs were even invented. Continue reading.
Until next time, keep your head up and travel on.
Another week has come and gone, which means another week of publishers battling for your scroll stopping attention. Don’t worry, while you have been recovering from your St. Patrick’s Day stupors and having questionably long daydreams about Easter chocolate (melted chocolate too, you naughty girl), we have been scouring the news to separate the chickens from the eggs. It got pretty hairy there for a minute and we all feel a little bit dirtier having subjected ourselves to it. But, dear Travelhers, we do it for you.
+ Trying to scare women away from travelling won’t keep them safe [via Quartz]
It’s not travel that’s a threat to female safety; it’s the rapists, abusers, murderers, psychopaths and other sociopaths that are found in every corner of the planet – at home or abroad. Let’s stop worrying about travel and start worrying about them. Jessa calls for a more balanced approach to reporting about violence against women in the media. We’re with her all the way.
Excerpt: “I would never argue that the world is a safe place for women. Women face a disproportionate amount of physical, sexual, and political violence throughout the world. But how we choose to write about that violence matters.” Continue reading.
– Jessa, can we be friends? In the meantime, we’ll just follow you on Twitter (you can do so too here).
In the throes of her divorce (this is a throwback to her pre Eat Pray Love days), Liz flees to an isolated island, locks herself away in a small hut and spends her days crying alone. This threatens to take a morbid turn when Liz falls ill and doesn’t emerge from her hut for her daily walk. Turns out, Liz wasn’t as alone as she’d originally thought; a kind local woman had been looking out for her, and gave her food, water and love at a time of great need. It’s a beautiful, uplifting, goose-bumpy, faith-in-humanity-restoring read. And it’ll make you want to book your next trip, pronto.
Excerpt: “This stranger had seen my need, and she offered fellowship. In so doing, she not only healed me but taught me these lessons: Be not solitary, and be not proud. See others, and allow yourself to be seen. Help others, and allow yourself to be helped. Make contact, and be open to kindness.” Continue reading.
- Liz Gilbert manages to captivate our attention yet again. Warm fuzzies included.
+ Is travelling as a solo woman dangerous?
Usually when an article is titled with a yes or no question like this, it means you should run for the hills.
Thou shalt not link to articles that make us cringe, so please just heed this week’s example of a click bait headline to avoid, and be on your merry way.
- Until we meet again, keep your head up, enjoy that confectionery buffet of Easter delights and travel on.