Aqua & Ink’s top 10 travel tips for women

Aqua & Ink’s top 10 travel tips for women

For the first of our Wanderers blogs, we caught up with blogger and Instagram super-babe Katrina Luder of Aqua & Ink who’s in Thailand, to get her top 10 travel tips for rad women.

First, a little Q&A.

Aria: WHY did you start travelling?

Katrina Luder: Ever since I was little, I’ve had a hunger to travel. I always knew I wanted to take a year out of normality and explore. I’m lucky enough to come from a country where free travel is so easy and there aren’t many complications with visas or currencies; so I absolutely HAD to travel as much as possible whenever possible.

Aria: And when?

KL: I first got a desire to be living and travelling abroad when I did my first worker season in Ibiza. The laid back lifestyle, ‘no worries’ attitude and experiences I had started to make my mind wonder what else I could do and where else I could go.

Then in October 2014, I packed a bag, booked a one way flight to Thailand – and 2.5 years later, I’m still living my own dream.

Aria: How did starting a travel blog change the way you travel?

KL: To be honest, when I was travelling without my blog, I felt my brain wasn’t being used for anything. I had pent up creativity and productivity that was being used for NOTHING.

So now obviously I have work to do along the way, I travel with my laptop and camera gear instead of packing light, I often have to pitch to hotels and spend a lot of hours glued to my screen. But in all honesty, my blog inspires me to keep travelling. It stops me from letting myself spiral into the whole, ‘Should I be settling down and buying a house?’ Bullshit. I look back on all my awesome memories and it makes me so excited to see something new, blog about something new and share something new with my readers.

Aria: Where did the name Aqua & Ink come from?

KL: The name came about because of two things I love and am passionate about. Firstly ‘Aqua’ represents my love for the sea, water, hydration, scuba diving, being by the ocean (#beachlife)… ‘Ink’ comes from my love of creative and informative writing! So yeah… bit of an abstract name for a travel blog but I guess I kinda like abstract. 

And now, Aqua & Ink’s top 10 travel tips for women

1) Trust your instincts

This may seem pretty vague and like ‘duhhh’! But honestly, when you’re a solo female traveller, you have to be in touch with what your gut is telling you… and you have to listen.

The reason I haven’t had any major travel fails or horrible experiences over the last few years is because I’ve stuck to my instincts and used common sense. If in doubt, play it safe… you can’t go wrong.

2) Get off your phone

I get it, Instagram is hella addictive. But if you’re a solo chick, you’ve gotta look friendly and open to conversation. If you’ve got your head stuck in your phone, people aren’t gonna strike a conversation with you. Put your phone down and trust me, you’ll have a bunch of pals before you know it.

3) Be respectful of other cultures

This goes for anyone – not just women. Research the country you’re going, learn about their beliefs and act/dress appropriately.

4) Travelling alone doesn’t always mean that you’ll BE alone

My most asked question is: but how do you cope being on your own the whole time?

In all honesty, when you travel alone, unless you REALLY shut yourself off from society… chances are, you’ll never actually be alone. In fact, I find myself craving alone time just to have a breather. There’s something about being alone that attracts others to you. You honestly form the biggest groups in no time at all. 

5) Always carry your Aria Kit

I have been on a LOT of planes. I hate them, they suck. You get dry skin, you feel dehydrated, your breath stinks and you can’t get any sleep.


Honestly, my flight-life has been changed by my Aria kit. Gone are the days of post-flight pimples and bad breath. I’m so passionate about my kit, I tell the strangers on the plane and new roomies in the hostels all about it and give them a walking tour of the contents, ha.

I’m never without my vital carry on essentials anymore.

I say ALWAYS carry your kit because they’re great for hotels, hostels, buses, taxis… anywhere! I even brought my trusty kit to the Taj Mahal… hey, a girl’s gotta stay moisturised.

6) Don’t just take someone’s word for it

Too many times in the past, I’ve met fellow nomads who have tried their best to put me off travelling to a country or exploring a new city because of a bad experience they had. Make your own mind up, follow those instincts I told you about… and don’t let someone else’s bad experiences define your trip.

7) iPhone notes are your best friend

When you’re sat chatting to people about countries they’ve been and unforgettable memories they’ve had, WRITE THEM DOWN. Nothing worse than getting to Vietnam and forgetting that incredible view point you should check out, or the name of those bungalows you should stay. Keep a track in your iPhone notes so you can whip them out when you need them.

8) Always tell someone your travel plans

Whether it’s a quick WhatsApp to home or someone you have met in the hostel, tell SOMEONE what you’re doing that day. If you’re going off grid, make sure you’ve told someone or you have a way of getting immediate help. You know, just in case!

9) Confidence is key

Remember that when you travel, you can be whoever you want to be. Even if back home you’re the shy girl who doesn’t really engage in too much conversation – this doesn’t have to define who you are on your travels. Be confident, challenge yourself, start a conversation and act like you know what you’re doing.

10) Book on a group tour

This might be a bit ‘taboo’ for all you strong, independent females, but booking a group tour for the first week of your travels can really help to take the edge off. You’ll have a whole group of friends, organised travel and you can purely enjoy yourself without worrying about how to book the next bus or which hostel to stay in.

Check out the awesome Aqua and Ink blog, including Katrina’s guide to everything you need to know about visiting the Taj Mahal, and definitely follow her on Insta to see some of the best travel pics out there.

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