Traveling is about experiencing a new culture and learning unique perspectives, but there is a dominant narrative in travel and international education that is very much middle to upper middle class and white. With this free downloadable ebook, “Meaningful Travel Tips and Tales: African American Perspectives,” we want to continue promoting discussions to make meaningful travel experiences more accessible to students and travelers of all identities and backgrounds.
Accessible travel is an issue for most people who want to study, intern, teach, or volunteer abroad, but don’t have the resources to do so. Beyond just financial resources, if students don’t see themselves in the stories, articles, and blog posts written by alumni, going abroad won’t seem like a viable option. In a field centered around diversity and cultural exchange, this is an enormous shame.
To this end, our GoAbroad Diversity Squad was born, a group of contributors dedicated to sharing their personal stories and travel expertise in order to make meaningful travel accessible to more people. In this ebook about African American perspectives, our writers share their travel tips and tricks especially for African American travelers, including all the highs and lows. From interesting first-time encounters abroad to packing and beauty tips, this book covers the full-spectrum of need-to-know information for black travelers.
Realizations like this:
It didn’t take long for me to realize that I’m unmistakably and unequivocally black. Living out of the country long-term for the first time, I noticed distinct behavior that was unfamiliar to me. I found myself nodding at random black strangers I’d never seen before (for more on this, look up ‘The Nod,’ or ‘The Negro Nod,’ or ‘The Black Head Nod’). It was like an acknowledgement of ethnic solidarity.
- Karl Gourgue, Studying Abroad While Black: the Good, the Bad, the Weird.
To stories like this:
I was in Bueno Aires, Argentina for about two months for an internship and I ran out of foundation [gasp!]; I needed some badly. I generally don’t mind not wearing makeup, but I felt I was more presentable to clients on the job when I looked a bit more polished. Anyway, there’s no makeup for women of color because there are barely any women of color in Argentina, so I was out luck. But the worst was yet to come…”
- Alicia Harris, Study Abroad Beauty Tips for Black Girls
For young black travelers, students, ESL teachers, interns, volunteers, every single black traveler, this book is for you. Everyone deserves the opportunity to travel, and GoAbroad is dedicated to providing every African American student, and every student for that matter, with the tools, knowledge, and confidence they need to do so.
Note: This is an open book (pun intended). It will continue to grow as we share more stories and add more voices. If you’re an African American traveler interested in contributing to this ebook, you can fill out this form.