For obvious reasons, the global tourism industry lost an estimated $1.3 trillion in 2020. But with vaccination rates on the rise, a growing number of Americans are feeling comfortable enough to once again board planes, trains, and automobiles. Now that we are finally (finally!) able to leave our homes with peace of mind, the question is… wait, how do we travel, again?
To answer this all-important question, we tapped women helming some of the top travel companies to share their summer getaway plans. Besides offering up clutch packing tips and redeye-survival hacks, they are giving us a major dose of wanderlust. Here, where they’re traveling, how they’re packing, and what they’re planning to do when they arrive at their destination.
Ruzwana Bashir, the founder and CEO of Peek.com, is going to England, then Italy.
Ruzwana Bashir spent 20-plus hours trying to book activities for a birthday trip with friends to Istanbul before realizing there had to be a better way—and if there wasn’t, she would create one herself. So, 10 years ago, the avid traveler launched Peek.com, an online platform for booking travel experiences, like food tours and hot air balloon rides, in any given destination. The goal is to make travel planning easier so that vacationers can get out and experience the robust culture of a new place. “I grew up in the UK as the child of Pakistani immigrants, so that dual heritage meant I was always fascinated with other cultures,” she says. This August, the New York City–based founder is headed back to London (where she used to live) before jetting off to Italy: Modena and Florence, to be precise.
Why England and Italy?
It’s been such a long time since I’ve seen my friends and family in the UK, so London is definitely my first stop. Italy is only a short hop away, and it’s always magical; last time I was there I was filming for a TV show with chef Massimo Bottura in Modena, which meant I was eating his delicious dishes the whole time. I can’t wait to go back and get my fill again!
Where she’s staying:
With friends in London and at Casa Maria Luigia in Modena.
What’s on her itinerary:
There are a few must-dos in London! A picnic with friends in Regent’s Park. I head to nearby Marylebone High street to pick up supplies (La Fromagerie is the best cheese shop) first, and the park has a beautiful rose garden that you can’t miss. I’m a history buff so I always squeeze in a trip to the British Museum if I can, and love the Royal Academy of Arts or the Tate for a dose of culture. Then, it’s afternoon tea at the Wolseley to feed my passion for scones. The UK also has incredible Indian and Pakistani food, so dinners at Darjeeling Express or Salloos can’t be missed. In