Jou Jou Travels – Meet Jackie, a London Based Travel Blogger and Influencer

Hi! I’m Jackie.

I am a London based travel blogger. When I travel, I love to find hidden gems – the undiscovered places with pretty architecture and pops of color.

Featured in Yahoo News, TripAdvisor, Niche Pursuits, and GetYourGuide, I’ve blogging for four years and have solo-traveled to over 20 countries. In 2023, I made the leap to full-time blogging, sharing my passion for travel and unique finds with readers worldwide.

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Where does the name Jou Jou come from you might ask?

I’m Egyptian & my mom nicknamed me Jou Jou always saying Jou Jou habibti, meaning Jou Jou my love in arabic. Jou Jou My Love is the name of my jewelry company & Jou Jou Travels is where I write all my travel stories for you to enjoy.

My passion for travel

all began when I worked at Delta (as a research analyst not flight attendant!) and got to travel the world for pretty much free & in business class (which was the nicest part of it all). And a super hard perk to leave.

But I did leave one day, and I was super bummed about loss of my amazing flight benefits. However, I discovered a new way of traveling for cheap by subscribing to a newsletter called the Thrifty Traveler and finding so many cheap deals to Europe, Asia, and pretty much everywhere in the world. I went to Greece direct on Delta for $300.

I could now plan all my trips instead of my old lifestyle where I sat at the terminal hoping I’d make a flight. If I didn’t make the flight, I’d go to the next country and not plan a single thing. I would go to the country and sometimes not even have a hotel booked or know anything about the place.

My new lifestyle of booking the flight ahead of time, allowed me to plan the trips and fun things to do – it made the trip much more enjoyable. I could learn about the people, the culture, the food.

Now, I took my passion of travel to the next level. I made it my goal to move abroad so I could experience Europe’s many beautiful countries at an hour or two flight away.

My dream to move abroad

was not an easy task. It’s hard to move to Europe as an American if you want to go and work a normal job instead of some other means. You have to be sponsored and not many companies are willing to sponsor you if there are equally skilled candidates that are able to work legally already. Thankfully, I worked at CNN and could apply for another internal position at the company but in the London office. I was so excited to have this opportunity, this chance.

Here I am now, finding the best places to go and the best things to do, I want to share all of that with you as my reader and I hope you feel inspired to travel the world and if you have no one to do it with, please don’t let it stop you!

Another thing Delta taught me was to travel alone!

The catch to the flight benefits was you had to travel on stand by so traveling with someone who purchased a confirmed ticket was not ideal since you might not make the flight yourself. Finding someone at Delta to travel with was not always a guarantee. In fact, I had a trip planned to Switzerland with a co-worker. At the last minute she canceled on me. I thought, how will I use these benefits if I depend on others to go with. Instead of not going on this trip to Switzerland, I was scared to death but I said to myself I’d go alone. If I don’t make the flight, it won’t be meant to be that I go, but that day, I made the flight so I traveled alone for the first time. It was an incredible moment for me and changed me and my outlook on life.

Solo traveling the world ?

is not as weird or scary as you think. It can be a little scary at first as I mentioned but now I’m a pro & I really enjoy the time to explore, reflect, and do my own thing. And I’m not always alone, I meet lots of locals along the way and they show me around better than any tour guide.

People ask me why I travel alone some think it’s strange and I tell them that if I didn’t I would end up being at home maybe on the couch and not seeing the rest of the world. You can’t depend on others and everyone’s schedule.

What are you waiting for – go travel ?

♡ Jackie