1. My ability to avoid creeps improves drastically.
I can lie by the pool without 17 different creeper men throwing out the ever-general pick up questions like, “Haven’t I seen you before?” No, you haven’t. Have you met my man-friend with huge muscles and a black belt?
Other favorites include, “Wow, girl, you look just like (insert obscure b-list celebrity here)” and, “Your drink is looking far too low for happy hour!”
2. I can reduce my dependency on public transportation.
With a male travelbro, I can take a cab without having an impromptu internal “how-am-I-going-to-avoid-abduction” crisis. It’s much less likely that a taxi driver in Bangkok is going to divert his route to an abandoned warehouse somewhere when I’m with a guy.
3. I can save money.
I can haggle with vendors without being taken advantage of just because I’m a woman and I “probably like overpriced shiny things.” There have been countless times where I’ll walk up to a street vendor with some interesting jewelry and, the minute I touch something, it’s as if they assume I’m going to buy the whole table and maybe the umbrella.
4. Going to bars becomes more fun and less cripplingly terrifying.
With a male travel companion, I can order drinks confidently knowing there have been at least four eyes on the bartender’s handiwork. Or, we just drink open-ourselves beer, like men.
5. I can participate in public blame games.
Don’t pretend like you haven’t done this. I’ll fart in public and blame it on him (because girls obviously don’t do that).
6. I can wander unknown streets late at night.
A late-night stroll no longer gives me carpal tunnel due to clutching my keys between my fingers in preparation to go Wolverine on any sudden movements or shadows.
7. Two words: couples massage.
What’s better than a super-cheap, super-relaxing massage after a long day of sightseeing? A massage with a friend. Couples massages are the best. They’ll often give you a two-for-one deal and are more inclined to break out the fancy stuff if you pretend to be so madly in love you can’t possibly fathom doing anything without each other.
8. We can capitalize on faux-honeymoon upgrades.
Right in line with couples massages, putting on the “we-just-got-married” act no doubt at least gets you a free breakfast or some kind of deal at the spa. If there’s one thing hotels love, it’s newlyweds. They’re excited to be there, they’re probably going to spend money, and if you treat them well, you’ll get a killer review out of it.
Traveling with a man friend has gotten me a sea view with a private pool many a time.
9. We have double the muscle power.
When getting lost in a new, unfamiliar city, I can breathe easier knowing eye contact with aggressive strangers is no real cause for concern because, between the two of us, we can most likely take them. Also, hoisting my backpack up onto the top bunk at the hostel is increasingly easier with a man around.
10. I can relax and simply savor the experience.
Most importantly, traveling with a man puts my fears (including all of the above) at least a little bit at ease so I can enjoy more things I might not be able to by myself or with another woman.