Just Back from: The Women’s Travel Fest

March 21, 2017

We’re back from the Women’s Travel Fest and wow, was it a great run! For it’s fourth year, WTF Founder (and Grabr ambassador) Kelly Lewis, decided to switch things up with a new locale. Instead of hosting the two-day festival in New York or San Francisco as she has in the past, she picked a city we all know and love for its beignets, beads and beautiful landmarks: New Orleans!

Even better, our lovely Founder Daria had the chance to intro Grabr to all the amazing women at this year’s event. Scroll below for a few highlights from the fest.

Saturday was jam-packed with keynotes, panels and informational sessions, kicking off with some serious travel hacking from Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie of The Globetrotting Teacher.

A few other highlights included a talk from Cassie De Pecol–aka the fastest woman to travel to every country in the world–and an inspirational session with author and motivational speaker, Shannon Kaiser.

Grabr also made a cameo during the day’s second panel, where Courtney Scott (left) and Megan McDonough (aka me, right) spoke about our biggest travel mistakes and lessons we learned on the road. Daria was backstage during our intro and then front row during the talk. #teamwork

Meeting locals on the road is one of the best perks of travel and while most people are kind and genuine, sometimes you may find yourself in an uncomfortable situation. During our one-hour panel we talked about all sorts of tips—from taking self-defense classes to using the “buddy system” when you travel.

That said, Courtney and I still encourage solo travel; just always be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts. All women have them! 

Later in the day Daria took the stage with Deidre Mathis of Wanderlust Houston, Gillian Morris of Hitlist and Mickela Mallozzi to discuss the ups and downs of building a business in travel.

While I’ve been passionate about Grabr for over a year now, it was really inspiring to hear Daria tell her story of business, the struggles she faced (and faces) along with tips for how others can follow in her footsteps.

Daria speaks at a lot of conferences around the world but the Women’s Travel Fest really stuck out to her. “It was a great way to connect with a community of avid and beginner travelers. There were amazing and inspiring speakers who have great experience in travel and building their brand and businesses in this sphere.

I love how people who travel a lot are having a much bigger perspective on the world now, better understanding of other cultures as well as cultivate bigger tolerance towards other people. I think travel is the most important and exciting things everyone should be doing to enrich their lives and souls.

I’m happy that the conferences like this exist, that open the world of travel and enable sharing others’ experiences with those who are just aspiring travelers.”

Another fun memory from the fest was getting to re-connect with some of our travelers and ambassadors! Alyssa Ramos led a really informative workshop about how to make money on Instagram; more so, she chronicled her journey from never leaving the country to now traveling to more than 55 countries. Oh, and she also gave Grabr a nice little shout out 🙂 Remember her trip to Brazil?

Right after Alyssa’s Instagram session, another Grabr Ambassador took the stage to discuss the ins and outs of Twitter. Yes, Scott Eddy was the ONLY man to speak at the Women’s Travel Fest. As another Grabr Ambassador, Scott traveled to Vietnam with us last year and met some incredible shoppers en route.

I met two incredible women at @WomensTravelFest in New Orleans….@MyLifesATravelMovie and @1NomadicDreamer.

A post shared by Scott Eddy ✈✈✈ (@mrscotteddy) on

All in all, New Orleans proved the perfect city to connect with women from across the country (and world)! Special shoutout to our other team members who helped spread the word about Grabr throughout the conference, at our booth and during all the networking events.

A post shared by Daria Rebenok (@dariachko) on

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