2018 Travel Recap

This year, I traveled to 30 cities and 3 countries. Some of my travel was for work and some of it was personal. All of it was an adventure and worth every moment of my time. I also moved from Houston, TX to Greenville, SC in May. This was a year of change and discovery.  Since I began traveling more in 2014, I realized that experiences are more memorable than any gift I've received. Since then, I've made it my mission to travel more and have unforgettable experiences. In this blog, I'm sharing my 2018 favorites: favorite experience, favorite city, favorite country, and favorite hotel!This year I traveled to:

Greenville, SC (Before I moved to here!)

San Francisco, CA

Nashville, TN

Austin (3x's)

Edmond, OK

Bentonville, AR (2x's)

Houston, TX (2x's since moving away)

Dallas, TX

Fort Worth, TX

New York, NY

Chicago, IL

Omaha, NE

Ellisville, MO

Knoxville, TN

Woodbridge, VA

Columbia, SC

Las Vegas, NV

Temecula, CA

Mesa, AZ

Mid City, OK

Birmingham, AL

Atlanta, GA (7xs)

Columbia, SC

Charolette, NC

Asheville, NC

San Antonio, TXMontgomery, ALNew Orleans, LAColumbus, MSPanama City, FLCountries: 

Havana, Cuba

Progreso, MexicoAddis Ababa, Ethiopia

Favorite Experience: Legacy Museum  and National Memorial for Peace and JusticeI went to the opening weekend for EJI's Legacy Museum and the National Memorial for Peace and Justice.  This was my first time to Alabama. Montgomery is a small town but we all know about Montgomery, AL because it's known to be the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement. I learned a lot of new things and mainly I was moved to tears. We as black people have overcome and endured a lot. Grateful for the ancestors who have gone before me, I won't let their fight for equality be in vain.

Favorite City: New YorkI booked this trip on a whim with my friend Sharon and her cousin Catherine. We decided to hang out in NYC for her birthday and we loved it. This was my second time to NYC and I got to visit a few places I hadn't been to before. We went to the top of the One World Trade Center. Ate Pizza at Roberta's (TWICE!). The second time we went to Roberta's we ubered and walked two blocks in the snow-- just so we could eat this pizza again. It was that good. We Brunched at Le Barricou which is this delightful French Bistro with an amazing Brunch Menu. We ordered way too much food but enjoyed every bite! We got our nails done at Local Honey, this was a cute chic place and all of the employees were super kind. We visited the Museum of Modern Art's Charles White Exhibit, drank Coffee at Manhattanville Coffee, got some healthy drinks at Grass Roots Juicery, and ate Lunch at KAFFE 1668 with an old friend!  We also went to a host of thrift stores around the city. It was truly a memorable trip.

Favorite Country: EthiopiaI went to Ethiopia for work. I had REAL macchiato's NOT the Starbucks version and my life was changed. The coffee was delicious- I had more macchiato's a day than I'd like to admit. I shopped in Addis and purchased genuine leather purses for cheap. The people are so kind, welcoming, and friendly. I had a life changing conversation with one of our partners there and our talk has stayed with me all year. This is a beautiful country. I hope more people visit Ethiopia!
Favorite Hotel: Springhill Suites By Marriott I am in love with the remodeled Marriott Suite hotels. Y'all I remember when suite rooms were boring, lacking functionality, and a "last" option hotel. Now, I will book a Springhill/Courtyard Marriott Suite hotel in a heartbeat! I stayed in about 7 of their locations around the country and I have no complaints. The staff was friendly.  The accommodations were incredible, beds comfortable, and they all had complimentary breakfast and a social hour. If you are looking for a place to stay, check them out!sh-main-0001-hor-feat.jpg Happy Traveling and Cheers to the New Year!

Faitth, where are you going to next?

So this year is coming to a close. I planned to document this epic year of travel in real time and discuss my travels and the places I went but that did not happen. So I plan to blog about it in past tense but hey, better late (like a year late) than never, right? I went places I only dreamed of going and I even went to Paris without a boo! Y'all I really wanted to go to Paris and I waited a few years because *maybe* I could save my first trip to Paris for me and someone special. But I decided to go for my 27th birthday because it was time for me to go on my dream trip and I don't have time to wait for a man to experience life and travel. I will gladly return to any country I've already visited ;)Okay, I digress.So lately, most people ask me the following questions: Where do you live? Where do you work? Are you still in school? etc. Because I travel so much I understand why people are asking me all of these questions, you never know what part of the world you'll find me in. So I am going to answer a few questions I get asked frequently.Where do I live? Houston, TX. I moved back to Houston from Austin in June of 2016 but I traveled so much the last 6 months of the year that I didn't feel like I "lived" in Houston until the beginning of 2017.Where do I work? I am the Communication and Programming Director for Legacy Collective. Best job ever. If you want to give monthly and help us impact local and global communities, join us! *Shameless plug but you won't regret joining us*Am I still in school? YES, I am two semesters away from finishing my Master's degree in Social Work.Hows Auntie Life? It's the best. I am so glad my brother and sister-in-law had a child. All my baby fever is gone. I will love, spoil, and kiss his little cheeks and give him back to his parents. Glory, Hallelujah.Do I plan to travel in 2018? YES. I do plan to travel in 2018. In fact, I am already planning my trips! I do not plan to travel nearly as much as I did in 2017 but I do hope I get to travel out of the country at least 3 times. The rest will be domestic travel!How do I find travel deals? I follow travel pages like secret flying, escape Houston, and Houston flight deals. I try to outline the places I want to go before the year begins and then look for those flight deals throughout the year. Also, SAVE, SAVE, SAVE. The more I travel, the more disciplined I'm learning to become with saving and planning for the unexpected. Traveling is wonderful and can be expensive so you really want to make sure you have a financial plan when you choose to travel. Here's the thing. Don't let finances hinder you from traveling. There are some really good deals out there. If you can afford to buy several pairs of $200 shoes you can afford to travel. Like I said before, SAVE. Start exploring the US, go on a cruise, and work your way out of the country. I'll be posting deals as I find them on my travel FB page, FaitthB: Travel, Write, Repeat.Say yes to adventure this year, its worth the investment.

Houston to San Francisco Tickets STARTING at $136

Are you trying to get to Cali in May? Well, there are some great deals I found on priceline.com and Momondo.com.  Just input the dates below to retrieve the prices I found. Keep in mind that prices change frequently.May 2-9, $136 on Frontier Airlinesscreen-shot-2017-03-21-at-12-28-04-am.png May 2-6. $167 Frontier Airlines screen-shot-2017-03-21-at-12-29-30-am.pngMay 9-13, $151 Frontier Airlinesscreen-shot-2017-03-21-at-12-34-04-am.pngMay 9-16, $159 on Frontier AirlinesScreen Shot 2017-03-21 at 12.16.29 AMMay 23-30, the price jumps up to $192screen-shot-2017-03-21-at-12-36-23-am.png If this was helpful, follow my blog to keep up with my updates on great travel deals. Feel free to Like, comment, or repost!

Travel on a Budget

[gallery ids="1252,1027" type="rectangular"]I love traveling. I find so much thrill and enjoyment from jumping on a plane and finding myself in a different city or country. Several of you have asked how I get these said deals and I am writing this blog to tell you about the tricks I have learned. Mind you, there is so much I am still learning.

  1. Follow Travel Blogs and Travel Bloggers
    • Blogs like Secret Flying, Escape Houston, Travel Pirates, etc. have great deals listed daily. When you see a deal input the dates listed for that price range in a search engine, then decide of you will bite the bullet and pay for the ticket. Most deals do NOT last longer than 24 hours. If you miss it, then that is it! Also remember that millions of people are trying to travel too and oftentimes these deals go quickly.
    • If you really want to get a flight deal you need to be checking these websites constantly and be prepared to buy an airline ticket without having everything lined up. If the deal is killer, you can figure out a hotel and rental car later.
  2. Use websites like Airfordable
    • Airfordable allows customers to take a picture of the reservation they want and put a down payment on the airline ticket which will hold the price. Then the customer makes a series of payments before the departure of the flight. So if you do not have the money on hand consider Airfordable to help you experience the trip of your dreams.
  3. Find a side hustle
    • If you want to travel more, you need a side hustle to help you make extra money. If you do not have supplemental income that can be used for leisure, then it may not be time for you to travel, yet.

There are so many travel websites and blogs you can follow. Remember to decide on the place you want to visit and then begin looking for deals and sales for that destination. If you have anymore questions, comment or reach out to me on my facebook page and I will be happy to help!xoxoFaitthB