Blogger and travel connoisseur Oneika Raymond, who popularly goes by Oneika The Traveller, stopped by The Huffington Post Black Voices’ bi-weekly talk show the “BV Breakdown” ― a Facebook Live show that discusses hot topics, current events and self-care tips ― on Thursday to share some of her travel savvy.
Black Voices’ Senior Editor Lilly Workneh and Associate Editor Taryn Finley sat down with Oneika, who was also joined by financial educator and author Tiff The Budgetnista, to share her knowledge on the most affordable travel destinations as well as the best countries for black Americans to visit.
Below are some of the essential travel gems Oneika ― who has traveled to 95 countries so far ― dropped during the episode:
1. Don’t Be Afraid To Venture Solo
Sometimes waiting around for everyone’s schedule to free up can cause you to miss out on some promising ventures. But if you’re hesitant to journey out on your own, Oneika suggests at least spending a weekend by yourself and working your way up towards a full excursion.
“I think we build it up in our minds to make it so much bigger than it is. And that’s why I would recommend people to do really short trips,” she said. “Spend a Saturday by yourself. Go on a staycation. Go an hour away and do a weekend trip there and build up to traveling by yourself.”
2. Go Where Your Budget Guides You
One of the best pieces of travel advice Oneika said she’s received is “chase the deal, not the destination.” So while you may not be able to afford a Parisian trip just yet, Oneika said there are a number of places that allow for more affordable travel like Bolivia, Canada, Russia and Nepal.
3. There Are Some Pretty Great Destinations For Black Travelers
During the segment, Oneika championed a few countries that she said embrace and celebrate the African Diaspora. She mentioned Thailand, Colombia, Dubai, South Africa and Brazil among some of the best destinations for black travelers.
4. Try Not To Write Off Countries Because Of Their Race Relations
While you should certainly make it a point to visit countries that are celebratory of black culture and be conscious of those that don’t, Oneika said you shouldn’t always write off a travel destination because of the area’s race relations.
“If you use [racism] as a basis to not travel, you wouldn’t go no place,” she said.
5. Travel = Self-Care
The wondrously refreshing nature of travel serves as the ultimate form of self-care and Oneika says to drop any inhibitions and treat yoursel.