There has definitely been an uptick in travel related content targeted both at young millennials and Black folks at large. Bless Obama’s heart, but that was definitely one of the overlooked perks of his administration: how much more accessible traveling as an American became. Even just in the attitude of how we are received as Americans.

It makes total sense the popularity of content around traveling internationally. It looks cute, you’re experiencing new cultures and food, your Instagram pics will be so lit, I mean it is lit to travel abroad!

But as much there are ways to travel on a budget abroad, it’s still not universally accessible to every and anybody. Truth be told some of us just aren’t up for the struggle it takes to travel on a budget. We’re not backpackers and we’re not trying to stay at the Ritz. But a certain level of comforts on vacation, you are totally allowed to expect.

So while you save up the coin to make sure those comforts are being met. Or while you’re warming up to the idea of 10+ hour flights. Maybe even waiting to get your passport or on friends to level up financially or find vacation time, I have a great idea to get you on the road to traveling!

Travel domestically.

Girl, the United States of America in all it’s 48 contingent states is one of the most geographically diverse countries. If you live in Europe, you can do this within the European Union. In the US of A, there are a multitude of landscapes and cultures for you to enjoy on really good budget and it’s much easier to corral your friends along.  

Now ain’t nothing wrong with traveling solo, I do it all the time, but many of us appreciate the value of shared experiences and creating memories with friends. Doing domestic group trips can be budget friendly, super fun and a great way to learn how to travel, how you LIKE to travel and how to work out whatever various kinks can arise when traveling as a group, without the pitfalls that come when you trying to learn all this 10,000 miles away, where English is not the national language and changing your flight isn’t as simple as a $50 change fee. Boop!

This past Martin Luther King Day weekend, I went with friends to Breckenridge, Colorado for a ski trip. I didn’t actually plan this trip, it was the doing of my friend Naheem and girlfriend Erica, but I am so happy I went. It was just a good chill time and I really learned the value of traveling with friends to places I wouldn’t normally consider in the states.

First off Colorado is beautiful. Though the altitude might have you loopy. I was loopy before I even got to Colorado ’cause I booked my flight for the WRONG weekend. In order to save on rebooking I came out a day earlier, but I got to chill with Mahogany Curls and the fam. Totally worked out great.

Shout out to Mitsubishi and the Drive Shop for lending me the 2017 Mitsubishi Outlander. I live in the land of front wheel drive Texas, so I wasn’t aware of the importance of All Wheel Drive in snowy mountainous place like Colorado. All wheel drive saves lives no really, it does once I realized to turn it on! I thought it was automatic but in the Outlander there’s a button you press to activate AWD.

There were 12 of us, so duties were split up. Three of us had to take of renting the cars, another crew budgeted out the food per person, the liquor per person and games + house activities and ski resort activities, It’s very important even if you are the main organizer to get everyone involved in the vacation and having a responsibility to encourage respecting others time and monies. We took a beautiful drive through the mountains of Colorado. Breathtaking views of the Rockies! Driving through the mountains I was like an 8 year old, oh wow look over there…look at that….how puuuuurrrrty. I was also a grandma looking up in awe at the mountain thinking of the potential avalanches and driving very very carefully. Fortunately the adrenaline junkies weren’t in my car, so no one was bothered by how slow I was going on the icy roads.

We were for really real up in the mountain side but the house was so nice and comfortable with a jacuzzi, that I did not bring a bathing suit for but I improvised because while in the mountains you or at least I must be the best white womanz I can and dip in that jacuzzi with my glass of wine whilst surrounded by snow. Get that gun Betsy, we might see grizzlies.   We went snowmobiling, they went skiing that’s not my ministry cause my knees and wallet was like nope.

So yes, take advantage of living in America!,

There are the rockies in Colorado, all the natural reserves throughout the Midwest, Mount Rushmore and native american reservations in South Dakota, bomb food especially the seafood and beautiful nature in Seattle and Washington state. The Grand Canyon and plenty of other canyons in Arizona. You can be like Solange with your homegirls out in the white sands of New Mexico. San Diego California with the beach and scenic drives. Black folks and BBQ and rice dishes that harken back to our ancestors in West Africa all up and down the East Coast, especially with the Geechie in South Carolina. Charter a boat on any of the lakes from Texas to Georgia and turn up, responsibly. New Orleans can never be slept on. There are so many options beyond Las Vegas, Miami and NYC or LA, so take your pic. Don’t let anyone shame you into thinking it’s not a great way to travel.