DANIELLE || 77 COUNTRIES & COUNTING
Meet DANIELLE, also known online as the @HotelWhisperer. Danielle resides in
New York City and is a freelance travel writer who has written for EBONY, JET, YAHOO Travel, Travel Noire and many others.
Places you’ve visited: Wow, that’s a list that could go on forever, I’ve been to 77 countries and counting so far! Does almost everywhere count as an answer? LOL.
Last Trip: Mexico.
Favorite place(s): That’s a tough one! Right now I would have to say Abu Dhabi, Zanzibar and Thailand.
Dream Destination: Mauritius! It’s my dream to review @stregismauritius
Favorite hotel: That is a tough one! I love so many! But even though I’m a St. Regis Girl at heart, my favorite hotel stay would have to be &Beyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge in Tanzania. It was so breathtaking and humbling to be that close to nature. It was like a scene straight out of The Lion King!
How often & with whom do you travel?: I probably take 2 two week long trips a year, one for my birthday and one for Christmas/NYE. In between I take advantage of long weekends and holidays to take 4-6 day long trips. I’d say 95% of the time I’m traveling solo, but I have so many friends living overseas that I’m rarely solo for long.
How do you decide where to travel next?: Because I love luxury hotels, my dream hotels usually drive my travels. Outside of that I choose where to go based on the latest travel deal, and food. I love to eat!
I can’t travel without: My Lo and Sons OG bag, my DSLR, Evian Facial Mist, Hershey Nuggets w/Toffee and Almonds, and my rosary from the Vatican that my grandma had blessed for me.
The best thing about traveling is: Uncovering new experiences..
The hardest part of traveling is: finding the money and the time!
Travel tips for others interested in budget world travel?
- Start a travel fund. Treat the fund like one of your bills…pay it every month. Before you know it you’ll have enough for a flight, hotel or even the entire vacation.
- Stalk sites like TheFlightDeal.com and Airfarewatchdog. The Flight Deal starts posting deals at 6:30am EST and I’m on it like hot cakes every day. If I see a deal I can take advantage of I’m usually able to jump on it because of my travel fund.
- Try traveling during low and shoulder seasons. It may not be popular to travel to Turkey in May, for example, but tickets can be under $600 in the Spring as opposed to $1200 during the peak summer months. Lodging is usually a bit cheaper as well.
- Play around with flights. A straight roundtrip might be expensive, but if you fly into a nearby country or city and out of your main destination, you could save a few bucks and see more than one country. A few years back I flew into Turkey and out of Dubai for $630 on Delta. I flew to Dubai for under $150 on Flydubai. The straight RT to Dubai was a little over $900.
- Don’t be afraid to barter. If you’re a travel blogger, great at graphic/web design, know how to bartend, etc, try offering your services in exchange for what you need. A small time local guide, for example, might be willing to take you on a tour for free or at a reduced rate if you offer to spruce up their website or design new business cards for them. A local restaurant might give you a free meal or two in exchange for tending bar or waiting tables. You never know until you ask!
To follow Danielle’s travelers, connect with her at @hotelwhisperer on Instagram .