Reclaiming ‘Hussy’ for the Traveling Woman

If you’re a woman who likes to travel, congratulations: You’re a Hussy!


Now, you probably haven’t heard anyone under the age of 70 use this term, so here’s a definition:

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Coming from the word ‘housewife,’ the label ‘hussy’ stands in for any woman who fails to conform to that role. Working in the home is valuable labor, however, the traditional notion of a housewife brings with it outdated gender roles and sexism.

If you assume a woman’s place is only in her home, then you exclude her from public spaces. And if a woman cannot act as a free agent in her own community, how can she ever hope to travel?

For those women who have pushed past these restrictions and allied themselves with other women, the rewards have been tremendous.


In Gloria Steinem‘s memoir, My Life on the Road, she hopes to inspire women to travel as much as they possibly can. She reminds us that “[s]tatistically speaking, home is an even more dangerous place for women than the road. Perhaps the most revolutionary act for a woman will be a self-willed journey–and to be welcomed when she comes home.”

So if you’re ready to reclaim ‘Hussy’ for traveling women, join the conversation! Read Tangerine Jones’ article “Let’s Reclaim ‘Hussy’” for Bust magazine and visit for updates from Travel Hussies all over the world. is more than a blog, it’s network of women who live and travel all over the world. Travel Hussies know the best places to visit and how to travel smart and safe.


At a live taping of Call Your Girlfriend (a podcast for long distance besties everywhere), a young woman asked journalist Ann Friedman and tech specialist Aminatou Sow what advice they would give to young women who want to travel safely.

Friedman and Sow emphasized the importance of reaching out to your extended network of female friends. Connect with other women who have traveled to or who live in the place you want to visit. You’ll gain valuable insight into what you do and do not need to focus on as you prepare to travel.

The word ‘travel’ comes from the French ‘travail,’ which means ‘to work.’ Are you ready to get to work Travel Hussies?

If you would like to share your Travel Hussy story, email Adrienne at


Travel on, Hussies!

– Adrienne



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