Before the internet opened up the world of travel, LGBTQ travelers had few options to explore on their terms. Men should get their hands on the big guys Spartacus guide and I hope all establishments listed were still there on arrival. The Damron Ladies Traveler was one of the options available to lesbians. (Just hide the book in a magazine and hope no one notices.) Since then, however, LGBTQ travel has become a much richer experience across the world.
Take Seoul, South Korea: In the mid-1990s, gay places were mostly clustered near the municipal landfill in downtown Chongno. Since then, Homo Hill in the Itaewon district of the city has thrived for more than a quarter of a century. And no need to lug around those clunky guides (which were heavy and are largely exhausted anyway): whether you’re in Seoul, SÃ£o Paulo, or Sofia, it’s easy to know where to go out by looking online – that is – that is, if the apps have not contributed to the decline of this establishment.
So while it’s easier than ever to control LGBTQ-friendly accommodations and places, that doesn’t mean exploring multiple time zones is risk-free.
Take, for example, what happened a few months ago at a boutique hotel in Sacramento, California. Two black women who were affectionate in a swimming pool were harassed by a group of white women who found these romantic moments “offensive”. Fortunately, their terrible story had a more positive end, as the rest of the crowd surrounding the pool supported the couple; furthermore, the security team called in to evict the two women insteadâ¦ escorted the homophobic crew who had started making unnecessary fuss in the first place.
Evidence suggests, however, that LGBTQ travel is not always smooth. Research a travel portal suggested that more than half of LGBTQ travelers reported having had uncomfortable or downright negative travel experiences at a property they had stayed at. Half of them also said they had been discriminated against when traveling. This is on top of the annoyances that can turn into micro-aggressions, like asking couples if they should book separate rooms, the pressure to change behavior or appearance, or having those awkward looks in a room. hotel dining room or restaurant.
Bottom line: Holidays are too rare and sometimes you just want to be with your own people. Or, you want your temporary hosts to be people who understand and have learned to go about their own business.
To this end, since its inception in 2014, Mr. B&B has become a leading LGBTQ travel platform in recent years and is worth a visit or two, if not more. At first, the site was a skeleton version of Airbnb, limited to hosting, and with few guarantees. This could lead to uncomfortable conversations like âcan you just pay cash on arrivalâ and difficult situations where potential hosts end up hitting travelers on Grindr. Well, in fairness, the latter is always a random possibility.
No, MisterB & B is no longer a slippery slope that can quickly turn into a dating site. It’s a lot more than that now, a lot more sophisticated and offers a lot more services.
Yes, accommodation remains the driving force behind bread and breakfast at MisterB & B. At last count, the site claims more than 100,000 LGBTQ-friendly hotel rooms, more than 300,000 guests and the ability to make a solid travel decision based on more than 270,000 reviews. It is also the responsibility of hosts and guests to be checked in, a fairly rigorous series of steps that can help avoid any annoying arrivals after a 10-hour flight. Nodding to the reality of the pandemic, there is also a process that drives hosts to ensure they have followed rigorous cleaning protocols.
Online LGBTQ travel guides are available for the most popular travel destinations, there is a pride calendar as well as listings for other events, and yes, one can even sign up for one. rewards program, for which you can collect points with MisterB & B or partners like Adidas, Sephora, Spotify and Starbucks. In addition to the WiFi filter (doesn’t everyone check it?), There are options for both pet and child friendly hosts. If sleeping in a tent is your thing, this is also an option.
Oh, and in a nutshell, if you’re looking to avoid the prying eyes of the office affair, there is also – sigh – discreet billing.
Bottom line: If you’re looking for a different experience when you’re on the road, check out MisterB & B. Like Zillow, it can turn into a rabbit hole to explore faraway homes, only the prices are much more affordable, and you can actually stay a night or two.
Image credit: Stanley Dai /Unsplash