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Diversity in Travel

Friday, November 10, 2017   (0 Comments)
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Diversity in Travel

by Peter Kovacs

As AIESECers we love to travel and have had the privilege of doing so at an early age. For some of us, who have immigrated during our childhood, it may even be a way of life.  However, it’s not as easy for everyone.  Recently I had the opportunity to meet someone who is working to change that for people of color.  

My professional life as a serial entrepreneur in tech has kept me busy as I have built four startups over the last 13 years.  However, I never lost my passion for travel and cultures.

In 2011, I created Accents are Sexy as a Meetup group when I was missing the AIESEC spirit, and I felt the burning desire to travel but was unable to do so due to commitments with my startup. I sought to bring international experiences to me – meeting people from different countries and learning about their cultures – instead of traveling to it.

The project has since evolved into an experiential travel guide where we break down cultural barriers by providing tools and tips to help travelers enjoy a deeper and more meaningful cultural experience.

I share my passion for travel with my wife, who is African American. She is the one who introduced me to the Nomadness Travel Tribe. Feeling a void and a sense that her community -   young millennials of color - were underserved, Evita was inspired to create the Nomadness Travel Tribe.  I love the openness and inclusiveness of the group, which reminds me of AIESEC.

Nomadness Travel Tribe was organizing a trip to Hungary and had a lot of difficulties communicating with vendors.   Google Translate is no match for the Hungarian language! It was by accident that one of the organizers noticed that I was Hungarian and asked for my help. I ended up joining the group on their trip to Hungary and met several members in person, including the founder Evita. Spending time with the group and having conversations with many of its members provided me with an insight into what it is like to be a traveler of color.

In six years, the group has grown to over 17,000 members. It has been the catalyst for what is now known as the black/urban travel movement.

Her recent TED Talk provides a good sense of the challenges, risks, and history of black travelers as well as Evita’s passion and inspiration for serving her community.

She now serves as a keynote/seminar speaker, TED Resident, consultant for Destination Marketing Organizations, and continues her love of seeing the world while writing her first book. Evita’s genuine openness, deep care for her community as well her strong leadership is very inspiring.

Is your community underserved in some way? As seen by Evita’s inspiring example, it is possible to make a change and fill a void. To learn more about Evita and the Nomadness Travel Tribe check out her website, this interview in Inc magazine or the Nomadness Travel Tribe website.

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