Meet travel extraordinaire Brittany Floyd aka Britta!
She is a flight attendant and the owner of GoSomePlaceNow.
GoSomePlaceNow is a website aimed at first-time and seasoned travelers offering a host of tips on places to go, things to do, and useful information to make a trip memorable. I got the opportunity to pick Brittas brain about her travel adventures, check out my interview below.
Me: How did you get started traveling?
Britta: I got started when I was 15. My high school choir got the chance to compete at an international competition in Verona, Italy. I was able to spend one week performing and sightseeing around Northern Italy. As the plane’s wheels touched the ground at Detroit Metro Airport, I immediately started crying; that was the moment when I changed.
Me: How many countries have you visited?
Britta: I’ve visited 33 countries in counting. I’ve been to every continent but Antarctica, but I would like to one day!
Me: Where would you say the best place you have visited is?
Britta: The best!? There isn’t really a best, but there are a few places that are notable. After all the travel I do, I still want to revisit Finland, Brazil, South Africa, Morocco, and Thailand over and over again.
Britta at the Tiger Kingdom in Thailand
Me: Where do you want to go that you have not gone to yet?
Britta: Besides Antarctica, I really want to get to West Africa. I’ve been to North, East, and South, but I’m longing to get where it all began for me and my distant relatives.
Me: What is your favorite thing about traveling?
Britta: I’m the most creative when I’m traveling, not just artistically, but also I become this inspired, problem solving, fearless person, that I wasn’t used to being at home. It has helped me gain confidence in my real life to be the best self I can be home and on the road. Outside of the more personal aspect, I love being introduced new perspectives, trying new foods, and searching for a better understanding of the world that I wouldn’t be able to get on the news or in books.
Britta in Santiago, Chile
Me: What is the most frustrating thing about traveling?
Britta: Trying to find a balance of being a responsible tourist. It’s important to see sites and things, but it’s also very important to see how locals live and be apart of the experience as best as possible. In some places, the tourism industry has been oversaturated and it’s hard to find a real experience, and sometimes it’s not the safest thing to do, if you don’t already have a connection. I’ve been a victim, and I’ve seen it many times with other people, if you do things the most touristy way, you can spend an entire vacation only interacting with locals when they are serving you. It’s important to use your vacations not only as a way to get tipsy on the beach, but also to learn more about the local customs, music, food, and listen to their stories.
Britta in Thailand
What advice do you have for someone who may want to travel internationally but are afraid?
Britta: First things first, it’s possible! Find someone you know who has traveled abroad, and take them out for coffee and pick their brain. If you don’t know someone, the internet is an amazing resource. If you don’t want to spend hours upon hours looking at reviews, get a travel agent. When you start the planning process, you must ask yourself where you want to go, who would go with you, what is your budget. Look up costs of flights, hotels, and major activities. Check to see if you need a visa or immunizations to visit the country. There will may obstacles, but if you prioritize travel, it will come to fruition.
Me: Being a black traveler have you ever faced any issues of discrimination in other countries? If so how did you handle it?
Britta: Honestly, I haven’t faced many issues of discrimination, but I have faced discrimination because of where I’m from; the United States of America. The US has done a range of good and bad things around the world, and depending on where you are, the attitudes will change. I have heard of Black travelers being discriminated against, but I haven’t experienced it. I have experienced curiosity about Black people in general, also the bewilderment people get when they try to ask you what country in Africa you are from, but you tell then you are from the US, and they don’t get it. Black American’s have a very unique experience of being Blacks that don’t know anything beyond where in the South their families were raised. Blacks that I’ve met in the diaspora have roots beyond where they live and can tell the country and tribe they come from, even if they are first or second generation and beyond.
Me: What has been the most interesting item of food you’ve tasted?
Britta: One time I was in Spain at this bar that brings out mystery tapas every time you ordered a drink, and they brought out bull. My friend asked him in Spanish, what is this meat, and he said ‘Toro’, even with my mediocre spanish I knew what that meant.
Me: What has been the most useful travel item you’ve brought?
Britta: My cell phone! It can be used as a camera, GPS, calculator, translator, bank, TV, and notepad. If I had to leave right now and go abroad without packing, I would take my passport and my smart phone.
Me: What’s the longest you’ve spent in another country? What country was it?
Britta: I spent 1 year living in Derby, England. I studied abroad through my university. It was incredible and I really got to live the local experience, whilst also traveling around Western Europe and North Africa.
Me: Would you rather see a lot of places or get to know one really well?
Britta: I want my cake and eat it too! I want to see all the places and know they really well. When I first started traveling I cared about how many places I visited, once I got to 30 countries, I decide to take it easy. I like taking my time in a place, but it’s not always possible with work and life and responsibilities. The happy balance for me is choosing one or two places to really get to know each year, but to never stop going to new places.
Me: Do you prefer hot, or cold places?
Britta: I don’t have a preference, as long as you have the appropriate wear for the temperature you can have a good time. I once spent two weeks in Scandinavia during the winter. At first, it was reallllly cold and dark, but then my friends mom gave me a warmer coat and some hand woven socks and I was set the rest of the time. I learned how to ski that trip and spent a lot of time outside. I like to mix it up, after a while all the beaches start feeling the same.
Me: What is your dream traveling experience?
Britta: I have a dream of taking the Tran Siberian Train from Moscow to Beijing. It takes about 15 days and you stop off in Eurasian countries like Mongolia and everything between Russia and China.
Me: Do you have issues with communication barriers? If so how do you overcome them?
Britta: I’ve visited many places where English is not widely spoken, and it used to scare me; now it just feels like a fun challenge. About 93% of communication is nonverbal, that leaves a lot of room for charades like exchanges. Thankfully now there are many widely accessible language translating apps like Google Translate. Language barriers should not keep anyone from traveling somewhere, but you will need to pack your patience.
Me: What has surprised you about yourself throughout your travels?
Britta: Before I started traveling I wasn’t as assertive and confident. But now, when I travel, I do the things I want to do, say the things I want to say, and meet whoever I want to meet. I have this bold confidence that has crept into my personality and has changed the way I behave, home and abroad. It’s probably the best thing that could have happened to me in my twenties. There is nothing a confident and brave woman can’t accomplish.
Follow Britta on Instagram @ https://www.instagram.com/gosomeplacenow/?hl=en
Connect with her on Facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/gosomeplacenow/
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