[edgtf_dropcaps type=”normal” color=”#3f6557″ background_color=””]S[/edgtf_dropcaps]upport LGBT couple operated travel businesses around the world! There sure are many travel blogs out there, some of them are really well written and reliable travel recourses with valuable information about the location. But we all know, that LGBT travelers have some additional needs for their travel planning, especially when it comes to how gay-friendly, open-minded, and save a travel destination actually is. The niche of LGBT travel recourses, including our own gay travel blog, is still quite a niche but they are existing.
One of them is the gay travel blog The Globetrotter Guys by the gay couple Sion and Ben from the UK. While focusing on LGBT events, circuit parties, and gay cruises, the married guys are really fun to hang out with. We met them in Chicago while attending Chicago Pride in 2019 and are in regular contact ever since. For our blog series “Support LGBT Couples Businesses“, we interviewed the globetrotting guys about their story. Enjoy our story of Sion and Ben from The Globetrotter Guys on Couple of Men and learn more about how the gay couple from the UK is facing the challenge of the Corona crisis together.
Love at first sight in a gay bar
The gay capital of the UK, that’s how the two guys, Sion and Ben, are calling their first chosen home, Manchester, in the UK together. The married couple met over 12 years ago which is, talking in gay-terms, a little eternity. Now, they settled down in Halifax, West Yorkshire.
“We are Sion and Ben, a gay married couple from the UK. Since January 2018 we have been running The Globetrotter Guys together – our gay travel and lifestyle blog, as well as establishing ourselves as social media influencers and content creators. We have been together for 12 years and married for three. Sion is originally from North Wales, and Ben is from West Yorkshire, but we met whilst Sion was studying at university in Manchester.”
Their gay couple love story begins, similar to ours with a meeting in a local LGBT Etablissement and the rest is history.
“In fact, we actually met in a gay nightclub on Ben’s first-ever gay night out! It was quite literally a case of eyes meeting across a crowded dancefloor, and the rest, as they say, is history! We have been together ever since! After a couple of years of traveling back and forth on the train to see each other, it wasn’t long before we decided to move into our first place together, and settle down permanently in Manchester. What better place for our first home together than the gay capital of the UK!”
Like so many others, the two married guys fell in love with traveling together after their first trips together, in their case to the other side of the world…
“Bens’ whole career has been spent in the travel industry. He started as a high street travel agent apprentice when he was just 17 years old, eventually becoming a store manager for STA Travel, one of the most well-known worldwide companies specializing in round-the-world travel. Without a doubt this fuelled his ambition to see as much of the world as possible! Whilst Sion was at university, we made the most of his breaks by going on as many holidays as possible – city breaks, beach holidays even trips within the United Kingdom. It was always a given that once Sion had finished university we would venture further afield and really travel together, and so in 2011 we set off on our first big trip to Australia and the southeast Asian countries.”
Sion and Ben feel very fortunate that traveling is something that they both are truly passionate about but are also aware that their relationship wouldn’t have lasted for so long if one of them would not have been interested in traveling.
“This definitely gave us both the traveling bug and so it was only a matter of time before we went again. In January 2018, we both packed up our full-time jobs and left the UK on a one-way flight, with no plans to return anytime soon. Prior to leaving we had seen a huge rise in the popularity of travel blogs, and social media influencers creating travel-related content and in fact used a number of these to assist in planning our own trip. But delving a little deeper we noticed the number of specific LGBTQ+ travel writers and content creators was a lot lower, in particular around the destinations of Central and South America which is where our trip started. And so feeling inspired by the work of others, as well as driven by wanting to share our own experiences and provide additional resources to other LGBTQ+ travelers, The Globetrotter Guys was born and continues growing to this very day.”
LGBT owned businesses are more likely to face difficulties not only due to the financial challenges of entrepreneurship but also additional problems regarding their sexuality, gender, and gender identity. With our blog series, we introduce you to LGBT couple operated businesses that need our support, now more than ever!
What about the Couple’s travel plans for 2020?
Their year 2020 started promising, also for the passionate travelers Sion and Ben. Even our home town Amsterdam was on their bucket list followed by Italy. But then, we all know what happened to our plans for 2020…
“Sadly, we have had a number of trips canceled already as a result of the Corona crisis, one of which was a trip to Amsterdam to celebrate our third wedding anniversary. Following this we were due to visit Portugal to celebrate a long-time friend’s wedding, and attend the IGLTA conference in Milan, both of which were understandably canceled. We spent the last two summers attending various pride events across Europe – mainly focusing on pride events we hadn’t previously experienced – and had intended to follow the tradition this summer! Unfortunately, this isn’t going to happen, so we are now on a countdown to Pride Month 2021!”
Why we still need LGBT and gay pride events? Well, as long as people getting bullied at school, having to face hatred and bullying, and, in some countries, even having to face the death penalty, gay pride and LGBT events are necessary to fight for equality, support the ones in need and to show that being who you are is a human right.
And then, Corona hit the world…
From travel bloggers to gay lifestyle influencers: The Globetrotter Guys are shifting their focus to creating content around their current lockdown situation while experience almost business as usual in terms of being together 24 hours a day…
“Fundamentally it’s hard to create new and inspirational travel content when travel is impossible! Whereas a lot of our time and efforts are usually focused on creating partnerships with various tour operators, tourism boards, and other affiliated travel companies, since the coronavirus we have had to rethink our plan for the rest of the year. Previously The Globetrotter Guys were almost exclusively travel-focused, but since corona we have expanded into what we view as ‘LGBT lifestyle’. We have been using the time that would otherwise have been spent traveling to create content relevant to the fact that people are being urged to stay home, such as the best LGBTQ TV shows on Netflix, as well as social media content around recommended grooming products, and gay fashion, etc. In terms of how it affected us working together, we’re together 24/7 traveling anyway so being stuck in lockdown together and spending so much time together is nothing new!”
How to beat the Corona Crisis? Together!
#1 Try to take some ‘Me-Time’
“Living, working, and traveling together can be full-on. Spending so much time together can put a little bit of a strain on a relationship, so for us it’s important to take some ‘me-time’ as and when is needed.”
#2 Try to stay save when traveling again
“When traveling as an LGBT couple it’s important to consider your environment, especially from a safety aspect. Do your research beforehand, for example by reading on LGBT travel blogs about the current situation of a country or city, and be aware.”
#3 Try to leave work as work and together time as together time
“This one is important for the current crisis time but also for traveling: Leave work as work and together time as together time! When you work full time together, the line can become blurred, so it’s important to set aside the time to enjoy each other’s company, in particular when traveling.”
#4 Try to support small business
“All we ask is that our readers stay with us. Whilst our focus may have changed slightly as a result of the corona crisis, please stay with, carry on reading our posts, following along with what we are doing on social media, share us with your friends and family, and when the day comes that we are back on a flight out of the UK, keep engaging with us when we are back on the road!”
Gay Travel Blogger of The Globetrotter Guys – UK
“We are always keen to visit new destinations, and we do often try to time our visit around LGBT events such as Pride celebrations, circuit festivals, gay cruises, etc. But even if there are no events on at the time of our visit, we like to visit destinations renowned for being LGBTQ+ friendly and welcoming, such as Madrid, and we ALWAYS seek out the local gay scene! We do have a trip to Croatia that is still booked for the beginning of August, which is an all-gay sailing trip with a number of other guests, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that this can still go ahead. It is very touching and goes at the moment!”
“As soon as social distancing is lifted, we can’t wait to take a trip back to our old hometown of Manchester and have a long overdue catch up with all of our friends. We will be sure to visit the gay hotspot of Canal Street! As we mentioned, our anniversary trip to Amsterdam was canceled, so this is a trip we plan on rescheduling ASAP.”