In 2017, you would not believe the things you can get paid to do. From creating PowerPoint presentations to shopping for someone else — you can literally get paid for anything! One ingenious entrepreneur, Rachel Hill, has managed to turn her love for world travel into a booming brand. She can literally do what she loves, travel the world and share her experiences via RachelTravels.com along the way. We sat down with her to find out how she turned her passion for travel into a paycheck.
How did you discover your passion for travel?
When I was a little girl, I loved reading. I loved how each book would take me to different places and times around the world and through history. I always promised myself, when I had the opportunity, I would see all of the wonderful places I’d read about in children’s books.
When I got to high school, I was accepted into an international studies magnet program. This program allowed me to travel to China and Italy. From then on, I was officially hooked and have not stopped traveling since!
What’s the biggest lesson traveling has taught you personally?
Personally, travel has taught me to become my own woman, from my own ideas, thoughts and perceptions. Through travel, I’ve experienced so many things I would never have dreamed of and met people, the most amazing people, who have challenged and helped shape my perspective on the world.
It also taught me I am not limited to anything I desire.
What’s the biggest lesson it’s taught you professionally?
To listen very carefully and not to immediately react.
Again, it goes back to perspective.
The way I think, believe, and perceive ideas on a professional level, do not necessarily translate the same for others when it comes to careers, business practices, contracts, etc.
Travel taught me to not take anything personally and just listen.
How were you able to monetize your passion?
Soon after starting my travel blog, I realized there was a need in the market for Black travelers. Through market research (asking my audience, social listening on social media, etc), I developed several products and services, including courses, a subscription service, consulting, and brand partnerships.
What was so amazing about this, is that I found a way to help people travel the world more (without breaking the bank) and was also able to create a thriving business.
Why is it important for Black women (especially) to travel the world?
Unfortunately, there are these preconceived perceptions and notions about Black women. While we, as Black women, know this is a huge generalization, it’s important for us to be seen and represented around the world. If all people see and hear about Black women are represented from music videos, rap music, and alternative facts via the media; then it’s our duty to display differently.
We can only do this by traveling the world and interacting with those who are curious.
What advice can you offer to someone who’s scared to travel alone?
Just do it. I can guarantee you’ve done scarier s— in your life. If [traveling] internationally is too much, take a solo domestic trip for a weekend and work your way up. Do some research online and find super safe destinations [with a] simple Google search.
The world is big and beautiful. There’s so much to see and experience and you’re wasting time by allowing fear to keep you from changing your life and perspective.