To kick start 2017 with a bang, we chose Ally as our January traveler of the month. They say dynamite comes in small packages, and this traveler pays testament to that.
30-year-old petite yet fierce Ally was born in France and co runs a record label with her partner. She is also the Artist Manager of several upcoming talented artists including South African artist Toya Delazy. What makes Ally a successful business women is her strong analytical thinking and the ability to adapt to any environment. Where ever she goes, she can spot talent a mile away and her proven business sense has helped her gained recognition in the industry.
She left her home town when she was 19 and lived in several countries including Mexico, Spain and South Africa. Currently based in London, her packed suitcase is never too far from her phone. She also loves driving; from a Ferrari in Barcelona to a tour van in Germany, Ally likes to be the captain of any journey!
Running out of pages in her passport and sharing her love of music with the world, Ally travels all over the globe organizing music tours and recently came back from a massive tour through 7 African countries. She has visited more than 25 countries and loves writing, graphic design and discovering hidden gems on Youtube.
We asked this Business Guru some questions and this is what she had to say :
- At what age did you realize that travelling was a passion of yours and what is your most memorable travel experience?
My family is quite the home-lover kind, we’d go on summer holiday every summer, in the same area (Charente Maritime), about 200 km away, mainly because the rest of my family lived there. I loved it but would cry each time we’d come back home from our holiday.
I started moving around at 18, to study, and went abroad for the first time when I was 20. I went to Swansea in Wales for an internship, that must be my most memorable trip, I had no clue you had to arrive 2 hours before checking-in, and no-one told me, so I pitched up at the airport 20 minutes before the flight, thinking I was actually early lol… the rest is history, I made it on the next flight!
Can you list the countries you have traveled to?
France, Wales, Spain, England, Ireland, Portugal, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, Poland, Croatia, South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia, Tanzania, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland, Thailand, USA, Mexico….and many more to come!
I once took my 2 South African buddies on a Europe road trip with a little Clio for 3 weeks, that was mental, but one of my best memories.
What is the biggest reward you get from travelling?
It makes me feel like I’m moving forward and going somewhere. I think I’ve got a phobia of staying in the same place, with the same people, and one day waking up thinking that I’ve missed something. Meeting new people, tasting new food, landing in a country that smells different, sitting down and looking at how other people live, that’s what I love the most, it makes one see life from a / with a different angle/ perspective. So I’d say I travel for the social and experiential aspect of things, more than the museums (that you can often visit online on Youtube anyway…)
What do you think about the common perception out there that anyone who travels long term and isn’t interested in settling down and are trying to escape life?
I think the opposite… staying in the same place is escaping life for me…why would you want to limit your circle to a few kilometers and surround yourself with people from the same culture all your life, what are you scared of?
The world is a big place, check it out, yes there are different currencies, languages, temperatures, you name it, but life’s about finding happiness in the end, and if that means travelling to hunt it, why not?
In my view, this common perception actually represents a community of people who gave up before even trying, they settle down because society tells them to, and often just let life get by. Happiness isn’t defined anywhere, it’s a very personal thing.
Do you think traveling can change a person’s preconceived ideas and discrimination they may have towards other cultures?
It depends how you travel… sitting in a bus with a group of people from the same culture might make things even worse, because you won’t actually meet anyone different. But it definitely can, especially travelling alone.
Discrimination comes from not knowing, and relying on the information given to you by your TV, friends or whatever source you want to use. Sit up, go outside, you don’t even have to go far, and force yourself to exchange something with people, even if it’s just the cashier at the store, they all have their stories, and make an idea for yourself.
In South Africa, I met many French people, living exclusively with their own little circle of French friends, and they had no clue of what the South African culture is… they have an idea of it.
What is your favorite destination and why?
Mexico, I love the way they don’t care about time.
What advice would you give to women who want to include traveling in their lifestyle?
- If you want to work and travel, get your gear on, you have to deliver! Go out with reliable and solid equipment (laptop, camera, portable chargers, hotspots), and keep it safe, so get a Cloud or a FTP server to store your data!
Follow her adventures here