An Interview with Nicky Stefanidou
Meet Nicky Stefanidou!
I first met Nicky through her Instagram page and just loved her colorful images from around the world. She's proven to be friendly as well as kind, she's been supportive of our Wander More mission from the beginning and readily agreed to do a guest interview for the blog. I am so happy to introduce our readers to Nicky and help you get to know her.
Where are you from and what got you into traveling?
I'm from Thessaloniki, Greece and I'm 25 years old. The traveling bug got me when I went for 6 months for Erasmus studies in Spain! Back then I was 20 years old and I realized that 'I have to explore the whole world!' About 2 years later I got introduced to the biggest VIP Travel Club in the world and I jumped in immediately.
How many countries have you been to?
I have been to 13 countries so far! Spain, Turkey, Portugal, Netherlands, Italy, UK, Bulgaria, FYROM (the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia), Serbia, Germany, USA (Florida, Texas), Cyprus and Hungary.
What is your favorite travel destination and why?
It's difficult to choose only one! I'm in love with Granada, Spain and Miami, Florida!
Do you have a favorite travel story/experience you can share with us?
I could tell travel stories for hours! One of my favorite is the story of Seville, Spain. I went there with my best friend having no idea what to expect. So we rented bikes and we saw the whole city in one day! At the end of the day we rested on the cost of Guadalquivir with a bottle of wine and many tapas! It was the first time that I felt the magic of letting yourself be free to experience the unknown!
The number one question I get asked, and I’m sure you do to, is how does someone afford to travel the world? Can you tell us a little bit about how you have managed to travel to so many places? How do you make it work financially?
I'm representative of the biggest travel club in the world! So I take advantage of the special offers that my membership to the club allows me to have and at the same time I have the opportunity to get paid because of my profession!
(I can get into more details if someone wants to know more)
What is the best piece of advice you’ve gotten about traveling?
Let yourself get involved with each place's native people! It's the best way to experience the culture of each place. Furthermore they can tell you the best "secret" places you have to visit.
What advice would you give to someone just starting to travel?
Travel is sexy and romantic but in order to experience it perfectly, you have to be well organised! So my suggestion is to do good research about the place you're about to visit. It will help you avoid bad experiences.
Do you travel on your own or with a companion? What are the advantages and disadvantages of either?
I've only made some short trips alone. They all gave me the opportunity to learn more about my self! However for a 25 year old girl, traveling alone can be quite challenging, so I have to be careful.
Most of my long trips were made with company. Traveling with others is fun most of the time. Sometimes if the people you travel with have different expectations from the journey than the ones that you have, it can provoke contentions.
Any favorite apps or other resource you use while traveling?
The Dreamtrips app (follow me up for access information) and TripAdvisor. I trust them both 100%
When traveling do you stay in hotels, hostels or an airbnb type accommodations?
I prefer hotels and villas but occasionally I've stayed in hostels and apartments!
Are there places you feel are underrated that people should see?
People tend to visit the capital of one country. However my experience has proved to me that smaller cities have a lot to offer to a traveler and can bring him/her closer to the culture of one country.