I recently caught up with a old travel buddy friend. We met for the first time on a cold street in Prague early this year, and since then I’ve avidly been watching and reading about his travels.
John Aiwone is a 23-year old travel and lifestyle blogger at Johnny’s Traventures, and has had the spotlight on him plenty of times on many event stages and seminars.
He’s worked with well-established lifestyle brands including Panasonic and Gatorade on collabs related to travelling and lifestyle.
This month, I caught up with him to celebrate Black Travellers in honour of Black History Month and below- is a few questions he answered for us.
Fay: I’ve noticed that you dont travel with other people quite often. Who or what is your Ideal travel partner?
John: It’s true. My ideal travel partner would have to be one who wants to have a great time and is willing and daring to try something new- whether it’s a cuisine they’ve never had before or an activity they’ve always wanted to do but not had the right opportunity and travelling has gifted them that. I firmly believe that’s one of the reasons why people should travel. Also, someone who is reliable and just as passionate about exploring the world as I am.
Fay: Interesting. Whats your favourite activity when your on a trip? Whats your “go-to” thing and why?
John: 100% walking tours. I like taking in a bit of the history and cultural significance of the place I’m visiting rather than seeing it for face value. Favourite walking tour to date is Dublin. The tours are a good opportunity for me to meet new people from all over the world and who are also English speaking for comfort’s sake. Plus, a bit of cardio to make up for not going gym so why not!
Fay: We all got to get that workout in, one way or another! I’m not the biggest fan of walking tours myself. I enjoy something more thrilling. Whats been your favourite food discovery?
John: Definitely a tossup between crepes and Dutch waffles – crepes if I had to pick one. I first tasted them when I first visited Amsterdam with my sports team. They were part of a breakfast I got a 15% discount on. Since my first bite of them, which was so sweet and lasting, I have always lusted for them at every sight. It’s a good memory.
Fay: Sum up Travel for you, in 3 words…
John: Educational, exciting and empowering.
The three Es right there.
Fay: Your constantly moving when I see you. You’ve got somewhere booked or are looking. Who or what has been your biggest inspiration to travel?
John: That’s a difficult question as I’ve gotten inspiration in many forms. Within me, the inspiration is the idea of learning and experiencing something new about the world. Elsewhere, it’s hearing and reading equally inspiring stories of other travellers and travel content creators and it is just as important for keeping my thirst for travel.
They always have something enticing and unique that they have experienced, and it gives me a new purpose to do what I do.
Also, the infinite number of recommendations I get from family, friends, acquaintances, work colleagues and social media of course.
Fay: What do you reckon is your most meaningful lesson you’ve learned as a passionate traveller?
John: Everyone has a travel experience or story that’s just as important as someone else’s. For instance, one’s travel story could revolve around a retreat, another person’s could revolve a road trip across a country or another living abroad. Whatever it is travelling is that one constant that has impacted them (for better or worse). It has added value to their life and we can learn from it.
Fay: So ofcourse I have to ask – In all the places you’ve been, I hope you’ve left a few for special moments. Where’s the dream destination for a romantic trip or a honeymoon if marriage is on your life agenda?
John: For a romantic trip, since Marriage isn’t close to being on my life agenda, I’ve always had Hawaii in my head. There’s the feeling of quietness, calmness and tranquillity that I get from Hawaii. Peace and quiet is certainly something most couples could do with once in a while. I won’t say much more being a hopeless romantic and all.
Fay: And to finish off this post, share with us an unconventional travel tip not many know about… Give us some secrets! I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours..
John: *Whispers* Recently found out that you’re entitled tax refunds or shop tax free of you’ve visiting most European countries and live in a non-EU country. Through a company called Global Blue. All you need is to get a hand of a Tax free form at one of the stores it is partnered up with, keep your receipts and head over to a Global Blue office, likely in airports.
Fay: Super handy. I could’ve done with that information plenty of times. Thank you for your time John.
You’ll have to keep an eye over at John’s page to see what my responses were!