8 ways to support women while travelling

Travelling for a long term opens you to a lot of new facts that is probably unknown or just ignored in the race of day to day life. The issues being faced by the world come out in open. Factors like global warming, rivers dying and farmer crisis can only be observed when you are left in such a scenario.

During my travels in India, Nepal, Thailand and Bhutan, I have realized that as a responsible traveller, how important it is to support women who are an important part of the country’s economy but their contribution is being ignored due to a reason or other.

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As a responsible traveller with a heart, you can support women in a number of ways. I am trying to do that and I hope these tips will help you figure out what else can be done.


Support local homestays

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Local homestays are family owned homes that offer stay for the tourists in an authentic way. They are way cheaper than hotels and often provide a way to build relations with locals for a long term. Women are mostly the incharge of the homes and they manage everything. When you stay here, the money you pay directly goes in the hands of the women running the place and they are able to work towards making their and their children’s life better.

Travel with women operated travel companies

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While this is a matter of preference and most of the women operated travel companies provide tours to women only, but many others also design custom trips for families. The Wander girls, WOW Club and Jugni are a few that are operating in India. If you are a female then you’ll also find a safe and secure way of travelling with other like-minded travellers.

Shop at women owned businesses         

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Tourist spots in India and Nepal have a plenty of local shops that are owned or run by women. It is easy to find one at Jaisalmer, Leh, Pondicherry, Kathmandu, and Pokhara. In Bhutan, women owned businesses are visible in a greater number because the country encourages it. By shopping at such places you encourage them to continue working there.

Buy women made handicrafts directly from their workshops

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Everyone buys souvenirs and handcrafts while travelling to a new place. In most of the cases, it is the women who work and create these beautiful designs. Even if they are not the one designing it overall, they are still a part of the design process in a way or another. Supporting women made handicrafts and directly buying from their workshops will eliminate the chances of the involvement of the middlemen and they’ll get to enjoy more profit.

Donate at women associations

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It is very easy to find a women association in tourist destinations of Nepal and India. These associations work in the favour of women involved in business and encourage others to show involvement to become an active earner at their households. They also regulate the market so that every woman is able to equally and fairly earn. These associations need donations to operate smoothly because they are mostly a non profit organization. Helping them will keep them going and they’ll be able to work in a better way to improve the life of their fellow comrades.

Eat at women owned food joints

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It is easy to find women owned restaurants in Leh Ladakh and North Eastern part of India. There are a plenty of such eateries in Goa, Kolkata, and various tourist spots of Nepal and Bhutan. In many cases, windows and single mothers run these places in order to support their families. A local eating joint will get you an authentic taste and will bring you closer to the local life.

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Encourage female guides and book tours with the companies that employ them

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Female guides and travel representatives are employed in plenty in many South East Asian countries while there are a few ventures in India that employ female guides. Hiring a female guide will help you find a different perspective of the place, at the same time you’ll be encouraging more companies to make women parts of their company in an active role.

Supporting women at tourist destinations helps them in a lot of wonderful ways. You may be ensuring education and upbringing of a child who will grow up to have a better life. Next time when you come across such an establishment in this scenario, make sure that your contribution is noticed.

What are the other ways in which you support women entrepreneurs. Share in comments.

Leave a Reply

This Post Has 38 Comments

  1. Different gate

    Your topic ways to support women while travelling are really awesome..I like your concept..awesome Blog…Keep sharing post like this

    1. ansh997x

      Thanks a lot for the complements. Hope you follow upon some of my ideas in future.

  2. Mindy Silva

    I loved this blog. Such a great idea. I’m in!

  3. I love this idea. There are so many countries around the world where women are still seen as second-class citizens. I appreciate this post you took the time to create and that’s it’s something I hadn’t really thought about. Great job!

    1. ansh997x

      You are right. I have felt that in India and I am pretty sure that there are other countries despite that they have a great role in their country’s economy which goes unnoticed.

  4. josypheen

    Great post!

    There are so many ways to support local people when you travel (rather than faceless corporations that own massive hotel chains.) I am always happy to support women when I can. In Morocco, we visited argon oil production cooperatives that were run by women. They told us that having that income had really helped their position in the village and give them more of a say in the way the village was run. A teeny bit of economic power goes a long way!

    1. ansh997x

      Really nice to learn about this initiative in Morocco. This is happening in some parts of Myanmar too.

      Women run most of the homestays in Himalayas because their husbands are out rearing livestock and farming. Staying at their place will give a different perspective of that place

  5. travelwithviz

    A thoughtful post. I am completely in favour of supporting locals rather than big businesses.

    1. ansh997x

      Glad to learn that you have already started it.

  6. Nia DeLaTorre

    I think it’s great that you donate and support women owned businesses!

    1. ansh997x

      If they are doing something positive for local tourism then it makes sense to donate them.

  7. Sanjota Purohit

    This concept is unique and useful to many women who are struggling to earn bread and butter.

  8. floridforest

    Have you done the local homestays yourself?

    1. ansh997x

      Hey, I have done local homestays because most of the Himalayan regions have less hotels and more homestays. It is also a great way to learn about local culture and food in an authentic way.

  9. carolcolborn

    Great things you are doing for women! I would pgotograph them in the different ways they enhance life!!!

  10. Jeremy

    I am open to donating to women support groups, opting for local homestays for more authentic local food.
    But, I don’t see how choosing to shop from women own businesses can be a good cause (if it means potentially hurting other men own businesses).
    Between buying a local souvenir made by local women Vs made in China, of course I’ll go for the one locally made.
    But, if it is between a local woman and another local man, both selling the same food, I’ll choose whoever makes it better, not because of gender.
    Equality works both ways ! =)

    1. ansh997x

      I agree with you point and this is the only place where I guess you will have to choose. I am not asking anyone to do all the shopping and stays with women owned businesses but when you are doing a 10 day trip, you can allocated 2 days to visit women owned initiatives. Is that a wrong idea?

  11. Thanks for so many great ideas to support women when traveling! I wasn’t aware of the women-run travel groups operating in India and I plan to visit there in the future so that is great to know about! I think that it would definitely increase safety and make me feel more comfortable when in a new place. I also like the idea about the homestays I think that would be an amazing way to really experience the local culture vs. a hotel.

    1. ansh997x

      Women in India often choose women only travel groups because of safety and to learn cultural perspective of a place. Hotels fail to provide that, commercial trek companies also fail to provide that. At-least you should experience it once in lifetime.

  12. travelgirlto

    This is a great post and has inspired me to do this on my upcoming trip to Indonesia. Thank you for bringing attention to this important issue!

  13. Luna S

    These are always wonderful ways to show support! I always enjoy as much as I can when I can so these will be great tips to keep in mind.

  14. Yara

    I’m truly surprised that this has never crossed my mind. What a great set of tips & ideas to support women while traveling. Just simple tricks, with minimal effort to support locals and women. Love it!

  15. Evan Petzer

    The homestays is a great way of supporting them. I too would love to experience this authentic way of accommodation.

  16. Jackline A

    Such a great topic. Supporting women can change a whole community. Thank you for this post.

  17. Adventures with Shelby

    I really would love to do a local homestay! These are great suggestions

  18. The Travel Bunny

    I prefer not being biased when it comes to genders. After all, feminism is about equality. I’d like to support locals, in general, whenever my budget allows it (considering beyond buying food made with local produce)

    1. ansh997x

      That’s okay. Supporting local economy direcly is also a great way to support local women

  19. yeah!! I love to travel, yes, a typical travel lover, almost more than 3 times in a year, just love your captures in this sharing. Thanks for this awesome sharing, very useful informative. cheers, siennylovesdrawing

  20. Francisco

    This is a really good idea, thanks for sharing!

  21. Sophie

    Every time I read your post, it brings a smile on my face. What a beautiful read.

  22. Martin

    Powerful post, as a man i agree its so important to help empower the ladies of the world. Thanks so much for sharing

  23. Yes too true here, when you travel to places less fortunate than you, you often see women just trying to carve out a daily living – kudos to them and will do what we can to help.

  24. Binge on Basics

    I also prefer homestays and buying items directly from the workshop. Nice and useful tips

  25. Blair villanueva

    I havent tried travelling solo, and I undertand how much we so to travel safely. Staying at the local and reputable is a safe place.