TIPS & EXPERTS
"My Girlfriends Are Boring!"
If your posse doesn't want to travel, then either ditch 'em and go alone--or find women more your style.
When an engine blew on a flight over the Andes, Teresa Rodriguez Williamson vowed to empower other women to travel--if she survived. Three years later, she's written a book, Fly Solo: The 50 Best Places on Earth for a Girl to Travel Alone, and launched a website where you can find travel companions and dish about your trips (tangodiva.com, $15 annually). For more inspiration, pick up Beth Whitman's new Wanderlust and Lipstick: The Essential Guide for Women Traveling Solo, which combines practical info with anecdotes and interviews.
At Hermail.net, you can get insider advice from over 10,000 volunteers around the world, who have also been known to show visiting women around for the day. Sister site journeywoman.com has more than 100 articles on travel health, solo travel, spa destinations, and more.
Ever since 1990, writer Diane Redfern has been producing a bimonthly newsletter, Connecting: Solo Travel News, with classifieds posted by those seeking lodging and partners. The $30 online subscription includes the downloadable Single-Friendly Travel Directory, with more than 270 companies and organizations; a list of more than 400 reader-recommended lodgings is free (cstn.org). The 2,000 members of the Women's Travel Club, the largest group of its kind in the U.S., find companions, female-friendly accommodations, and advice via a bulletin board and monthly newsletter (womenstravelclub.com, $35 annually). Tours are available to over 40 destinations, with at least half the participants booking as singles. Contact info distributed before departure allows everyone to find a roommate and discuss trip extensions.
Companies that run trips for women: