Travel safety is important to all. It’s essential that we, the LGBTQ+ community, can travel safely and in absence of harm or threat. Unfortunately, there are still a lot of countries that don’t accept queer love and queer relationships. This poses a travel safety issue of which we mustn’t ignore. Even if you aren’t a member of the LGBTQ+ community yourself, you should be aware of these issues too. Rest assured, there are many countries with thriving LGBTQ+ communities where their acceptance and love reigns and creates safe spaces for us to travel to.
A list of the places you can travel safely and freely as an LGBTQ+ person:
- French Polynesia
- New Zealand
- South Africa
Whilst some LGBTQ+ people will steer clear of countries outside of this list, there are many of us that will explore more of the world, regardless. We can all make our own decisions but it’s important to be informed before travelling. We must always be understanding of our community and the decisions we make, no matter what. Even when travelling to the countries listed above, you may still be subjected to homophobic stigma. We mustn’t let this stop us from traveling, but it’s crucial that we’re all aware of the risks we may be taking in visiting certain countries or regions. Travel agents, holiday representatives and tour operators are there to help and may be able to offer advice about the local LGBTQ+ scenes.
Preparing to travel as an LGBTQ+ person:
- Buy a guidebook that specialises in LGBTQ+ travel from authors that know best.
- Read online articles and blog posts.
- Look at social media platforms, such as TikTok, YouTube and Instagram, that specialise in LGBTQ+ travel.
- Look at ILGA World Maps which explicitly shows you where it’s safe to travel. It also highlights potentially dangerous countries and regions.
- Ask your local travel agent or tour operator about the local LGBTQ+ scene. Ask them where’s popular and use them a port of call if anything negative occurs.
- Research LGBTQ+ laws and legislations before booking your holiday. You can check the government’s ‘Local Laws and Customs’ section of the country travel advice page here.
Staying safe as a LGBTQ+ person during your travels:
- In some countries, consensual homosexual acts and relations are illegal. Whilst I don’t promote hiding your identity, there may be severe penalties to pay if you ignore these laws.
- Remember that stigma still exists despite countries being advertised and promoted as accepting homosexuality and the LGBTQ+ community.
- Research the country or region you want to travel to so you can determine their local laws, tolerance and overall attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community.
- In some countries, entrapment campaigns may target the LGBTQ+ community through mediums such as dating apps. It’s important to take precautions when making arrangements with people you’ve never met before. Advisably it’s best to stick with who you know, rather than going out of your way to meet with new people.
- If you are in a country that accepts the LGBTQ+ community and still experience discrimination, then leave the situation immediately. Also, report it to the local authorities if you feel comfortable in doing so.
- Local LGBTQ+ charities, organisations and travel agents exist to help and support you should you need their assistance whilst you’re abroad.
I know it can feel frustrating and laborious to focus on safety and the prevention of danger and discrimination. Whilst this is very important, we want to know how to have an amazing time travelling the world. Below is a list of some of the best LGBTQ+ travel blogs and content creation out there. Make the most of you trip; read and watch away!
LGBTQ+ travel bloggers and social media accounts you can check out:
- Travels of Adam – travel blogger
- Black Queer Travel Guide– Instagram account
- Once Upon a Journey – travel bloggers
- The Globetrotter Guys – travel bloggers, TikTokers and YouTubers
- Out with Ryan – activist, travel writer and YouTuber
- A Couple of Men– travel bloggers
- Nomadic Boys– travel bloggers, TikTokers and YouTubers
- Gastro Gays– travel bloggers, TikTokers and YouTubers
- Indefinite Adventure– travel blogger
- Two Bad Tourists– travel bloggers, TikTokers and YouTubers
- Wolfyy– travel blogger
- Dopes on the Road– travel blogger
For further safety information regarding travelling as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, please read the government’s advice here. Always contact the British Embassy, high commission or consulate, should you experience any difficulties whilst travelling. They can be found for each country here.
Happy summer and stay safe!